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Mantralayam, Andhra Pradesh Travel Guide

For the devotees of Sri Raghavendra Swami Mantralayam stands as a ?must visit? destination. Mantralayam is a small city mainly known for the Math of Sri Raghavendra Swami. The city lies on the banks of Tungabhadra River in the Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh. The city can be approached via Karnataka State (Bellary, Raichur) since the city is very close to the Karnataka border. It is well connected by rail and road. There are frequent bus services from all over Karnataka, almost direct buses. If you are travelling by train then get down at the Mantralayam Road station which is just 16 km away. Trains going to Bangalore from Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai halt at this station. You can hire taxis from that point to reach the abode of Raghavendra Swami. Sri Raghavendra Swami, a much revered spiritual Guru belonging to the Madhwa community (a community of Vashnavaites) had lived here for many years. He is said to have attracted devotees from all sectors of Hinduism. He is said to be the incarnation of Bhakth Prahlad. He lived around 16th century. He is said to have cured diseases, ailments, is said to have done many miracles and is said to have struck a chord even among some Muslim rulers. He travelled the southern part of India as a part of advocating the ?Dvaita? philosophy. Raghavendra Swamy?s devotees have spread all across the country. He was great scholar, poet and a humanitarian. In 2009 the whole city was submerged under water due to heavy flood. Since then the city is being renovated and the flow of devotees has not decreased. The city is mainly a religious place. Majority of people who visit the city include the devotees of Swami. So, Raghavendra Math happens to be the destination for all. The Math complex consists of the ?Brindavan? (Samadhi) of Raghavendra Swami who is believed to be residing there still. The Math will be crowded during the ?Aradhana Mahotsav? that takes place every year in the month of Shravan. The math conducts daily pujas along with other special ?sevas?. Devotees take early morning dips at the river Tungabhadra and come for the Darshan of the Swami. Outside the Math complex there are several tiny shops selling articles belonging to puja. If time permits you can make a trip to Hampi, a historical site belonging to the Vijayanagara Empire. You can take the shortest route from Mantralayam to Hampi that comes up to 108 km distance to reach Hampi.

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