Located to the east of Nallamala Hills, Mahanandi is a picturesque village surrounded by thick forest. Within 15 km radius from Mahanandi, there are nine Nandis (Bulls) known as Nava Nandis. Mahanandi is famous for the Mahanandiswara Temple and foremost shrines of Nava Nandis. The nine Nandi temples are Mahanandi, Shivanandi, Vinayakanandi, Somanandi, Prathamanandi, Garudanandi, Suryanandi, Krishnanandi and Naganandi.


The 7th century Mahanandiswara Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is very famous and sacred place. Though the initial structure was built by Chalukyas in 7th century, several additions were done in 10th and 15th centuries. The gopuram over central sanctum is built in Badami Chalukyan style of architecture and other structures in the temple are in Vijayanagara style. According to the legend, the local kings known as Nandas ruled here in the 10th century AD and they built a number of temples and worshipped their ancestral deity the Nandi, hence the name Mahanandi.


The remarkable feature here is the crystal clear water in Pushkarini which flows throughout the year. The water is so clear and pure that even a needle at the bottom can be seen clearly. There are nearly three pools in Mahanandi Temple. Two pools lie outside the temple. The third pool which lies within temple premises has uninterrupted water flow which originates from the basement of Garbha Gruha where main deity (Shiva Ling) is placed. This 60 square feet tank has a Mandapam at its middle and the inlet and outlets of tank are built in such away, the water level always remains at five feet high. Thus devotees can have a dip in this holy tank. Here devotees are allowed to offer prayers to Shiva Ling and touch the water underneath the Lingam in the main Sanctum Sanctorum. There is a huge Nandi statue outside the Mahanandiswara Temple.


How to Reach

The nearest airport is Bengaluru Airport, which is 306 kms from Mahanandi

The nearest railway station is Nandyal railway station which is 19 km far from Ahobilam

There are a number of buses plying to Mahanandi.


Panchamathas: Srisailam came into prominence as a Shaivite centre with the rise of mutts.

Srisailam Dam: Constructed across the Krishna River, the Srisailam Dam is one of the largest dams and second largest working hydroelectric power station in the country.

Sikhareswaram: The highest point of Srisailam is home to a temple dedicated to Sikhareswara Swamy.

Pathala Ganga: About 1km from the Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple is Pathala Ganga the sacred spot where devotees can take a dip in the Krishna River.

Sakshi Ganapathi (3km): It is believed that Lord Ganesha in this temple maintains an account of all the pilgrims that visit him.

Paladhara Panchadhara (4km): Two natural springs that are believed to have originated from Shiva's forehead form a waterfall here. It is said that Adi Shankara composed the famous devotional poem Sivanandalahari at the very spot.

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