Today being the last day of the navratri related to Durga ma's festivities, there is little crowd on the way up to this temple. It is a situated on a small low scrub hill in the centre of the city.
The legend is that Durga Matha rested her feet on this small hill before heading over to Indrakiladhri where the much more famous and larger temple is present. This is said to be her abode and people from all over the state visit the temple at Indrakiladhri.
This lesser known temple offers a panoramic view of the whole city of Vijayawada.
The way up is through a maze of lanes where the locals reside. You have to figure out the way up to the smaller temple. There are around 3-4 ways up to the smaller Ganesh temple. It is said that you have to first pray to Lord Ganesha as he is the one person who is said to be the vanquisher of obstacles. We can pay our respects at this quaint temple and go on forth for the next climb.
There is a gentle slope onward from the Ganesh temple before which you'll see bright yellow coloured steps painted with the kumkum coloured spots. Here you can see a lot of locals enjoying the view.
On the way, you see the nine avatara's of the Durga Maa at every turn you take. They are colorfully decorated and each one has atleast a few coconuts and bananas offered in respect and devotion. This "naivedhyam" also helps the poor and the needy who hang around most of the temples. There are a lot of monkeys too. There are a few benches where you can catch your breath if the slope is too much.
After the last and most ferocious avatar - Mahishasuramardhini, there is a short climb to where we can leave our chappals. Here a young boy keeps track of your footwear for a couple of rupees. There is also a typical icy lollipop made of milk or some crushed fruits which are home-made. They taste refreshing after your climb.
The Pujari garu here invoked the blessings of Durga Mata for each family blessing us with health, wealth and a long life to enjoy it. The kumkum and turmeric that was used for Pooja in the last 9 days was distributed to the devotees along with bangles.
Following the darshan in the gathering darkness amid the festive lights, the relaxing households, the playing children we climbed down.
If you are not an avid bhakth you can just go there for the view that the city has to offer.
If you visit in the early hours of the morning between 7:30 and 11:30 you can see the shri-chakra of the Durga Matha which is an auspicious symbol. You can appreciate the vast and tingling interior of the temple. There is a platform where the devotees gather for the bhajans.