There are two well-laid, all-weather, asphalt ghat roads between Tirupati and Tirumala.
The old ghat road was laid in 1944, and is for vehicles returning from Tirumala. It is 19 km in length. The new ghat road, which was opened in 1974, is for vehicles proceeding towards Tirumala.
The Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) runs a regular bus service between Tirupati and Tirumala, from 0300 hrs to 2400 hrs, with a frequency of just two minutes. Bus fares are:
You can save time by buying your Tirumala-Tirupati return tickets at Tirupati itself. These tickets are valid for three days from the date of purchase and ticket-holders can board any of the APSRTC buses returning to Tirupati within these three days .
- Express - Rs. 15.00 per head
- Ordinary - Rs. 11.00 per head
During Brahmotsavam and on important occasions like New Year's Day, buses ply round the clock with a frequency of one bus every minute.
For the convenience of pilgrims arriving in groups, APSRTC provides contract carriages. Each carriage or bus can be hired for Rs. 900.00. It seats 45 persons.
The bus can either be booked then and there, or reserved in advance.
At Tirupati there are four bus-stations located in different corners of the town.
For a safe journey to Tirumala, it is recommended that you travel by APSRTC buses only. APSRTC uses well-maintained vehicles that are fitted with power steering equipment, and driven by experienced drivers. Safety inspectors ensure that driving rules are followed.
- Sri Venkateswara Bus Station (SVBS): Pilgrims arriving by train can use SVBS, which is located just opposite the Tirupati Railway Station. Whenever trains arrive, buses are stationed right in front of the main gate of the railway station, for the convenience of pilgrims.
- Balaji Link Bus Station (BLBS): For the convenience of pilgrims arriving from Bangalore, BLBS is situated at Alipiri, at the foot of the hills. Here, there is ample space for parking tourist buses and vans.
- Sapthagiri Link Bus Station (SLBS): SLBS serves pilgrims who arrive from Chennai, Hyderabad and Vijayawada sectors. SLBS is located in the Central Bus Station Complex.
- Sri Padmavathi Bus Station (SPBS): SPBS is located at the rear of the Tirupati Railway Station, and caters mainly to the needs of pilgrims arriving in tourist buses.
However, if you are using your own vehicle, do negotiate the hair-pin bends on the ghat roads carefully.
|For those of you who would like to climb the hills to Tirumala to fulfil a vow, there are two well-laid stone footpaths leading to Tirumala. These paths are called sopanamargas.
The more ancient of the two sopanamargas which starts from Alipiri at the foot of the hills, is about 11 km in length, and is the commonly-used route.
The other sopanamarga from Chandragiri, though only about 6 km in length, is a more difficult route. It is mainly used by the local people and traders.
TTD provides several facilities to piligrims who walk up the hills to Tirumala.
APSRTC runs two free buses from the Tirupati Railway station to Alipiri, with a frequency of 30 minutes. Pilgrims who intend to walk up the hills to Tirumala can use these buses.