Tourist spots include Buddhist sites at Salihundam and Danthapuram, and pilgrim centres at Srikurmam and Arasavilli
Several tourist spots in Srikakulam district are being neglected although the district has a huge potential for tourism. The tourist spots include Buddhist locations at Salihundam and Danthapuram, pilgrim centres like Srikurmam, Srimukhalingam, Arasavilli and Ravivalasa.
Beaches at Baruva and Kalingapatnam can be converted as major tourism destinations. Thousands of people visit Srikakulam to have darshan of Lord Srisuryanarayana Swamy at Arasavilli and Srikurmanantha at Srikurmam. They are returning immediately with the lack of proper transportation to areas like Kalingapatnam which is located only 25 km from Arasavilli.
Located on the banks of the Vamsadhara, Srimukhalingam temple is also known for its elegant sculptures. Salihundam village shot into prominence when excavations revealed the existence of ancient Buddhist settlements. A maha stupa, votive stupas, chaityas, platforms and viharas have been unearthed in the village with inscriptions dating back to the 2nd century A.D.
Telineelapuram and Telukunchi are well-known bird resorts. Telineelapuram is located 65 km from Srikakulam and seven km from Tekkali while Telukunchi is at a distance of 115 km from Srikakulam. Painted storks and pelicans from Siberia migrate to these sanctuaries every year to nest and breed. Despite the district being on the tourist circuit map of the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation, the tourism transport services are limited to Visakhapatnam district. Srikakulam is not a part of in the tourism package being offered to those who visit Visakhapatnam.
The corporation has recently constructed a few cottages in Kalingapatnam and Arasavilli but they are not able to cater to the needs of tourists. “The pilgrims who come to Arasavilli are interested to see other places. But there is no proper package and guidance for them,” said J. Kalyanbabu, a resident of East Godavari district. The officials say that the budget hotel is being constructed near Arasavilli and it was likely to be completed very soon. “The budget hotel will be sure to take care of tourists. Tourism packages will be introduced when it begins functioning,” said an official of tourism department.