We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Not a pleasant experience at all....”
Review of Tirumala Temple

Tirumala Temple
Reviewed April 8, 2013

I guess the title says it all.

We walked up starting from Alipiri. My two daughters were with me. My co brother too chose to walk up with us. There are 3550 steps to climb and let me tell you that it wasn't difficult at all; in fact, the children enjoyed it very much (though we adults were puffing a little at times). Every 50 steps the number is engraved on the step so you know how many more you need to negotiate.

We started at 10.30 am and reached the top at 3.25 pm, in just under 5 hours.

All along the way up, the entire path is paved and completely covered overhead so we were not bothered by the sun. There are lots of shops along the way selling mineral water, spiced buttermilk, chocolates, aerated drinks, tea, coffee etc. You need not carry anything at all. We did carry waterbottles in a back pack and regretted having done so as it slows down your climbing. We drank the water quickly to reduce the load on our back.

There are reverse osmosis water purifiers in a couple of places. Normal drinking water taps are present every few hundred steps.

All along the path there are signboards urging you to call such and such numbers in case of an emergency but the mobiles don't work except for around a km and a half when you are walking on the road. There are no landlines installed by TTD! You would think that it is such a simple solution in any area of poor cell phone coverage to have landline phones, but TTD, like God, moves in mysterious ways. Before climbing up just pray that you don't come across any emergency because there is no way you can summon help in a hurry.

Half way up you come across hundreds of deer. The children were thrilled.

We had booked our darshan for the 4 pm to 6 pm slot.

And we reached the queue at 3.45 pm and started moving along but were suddenly stopped 5 minutes later by the TTD staff in uniform and were told that we can not proceed further as they received orders from the higher ups to stop the queue at once. We were told that some seva was going on on behalf of a VIP (the curse of this nation) and we would be allowed to proceed only at 7 or 7.30 pm! No amount of arguing and trying to reason with them would move them.

You can imagine our plight.....we had been trudging uphill for 5 hours and the children were now really tired. We had not eaten anything except for some groundnuts and some buttermilk along the way. And now we could not leave our place in the queue to go and eat something though now we had so much time on our hands. One of us went and got some biscuits and juice for the children.

Then we waited. And waited.

7 pm... nothing happened. 7.30 pm ......still nothing. 8 pm.....nothing. 8.30 pm ........no movement and no TTD staff to tell you what is going on. By the way, the TTD staff are trained to speak only in Telugu and no other language. They do not understand Hindi, English, Tamil or Kannada (or they pretend that they do not understand any language other than Telugu). In a pilgrimage place teeming with people from all over the country and indeed from all over the world there is not one staff who can say something that can be understood by people from other states. Again, TTD moves in its own mysterious ways.

Oh, yes, and the staff are extremely and I mean EXTREMELY rude. This includes staff at the cloak room (written all over Tirumala as CLOCK room,btw) too.

Finally, at 8.45 pm they opened the gate and we started moving. The movement was more or less orderly till we reached the main entrance of the temple. Then we went inside and were stopped for a few minutes before the dwajastambam so that those who had finished their darshan can come out.

While waiting here I noticed that there were 2 more queues converging from other directions and waiting like us. Our queue consisted of people who had purchased 300 Rs tickets and 50 Rs tickets. The other queues were of free darshan and senior citizens/physically handicapped persons.

I was amazed to see that they let all of loose at the same time from all the 3 lines! Can you imagine the crush and the stampede! We all had to squeeze through doorways that are about 6 feet wide and one gentleman elbowed my 10 year old daughter in the face so hard so that he could surge forward for a glimpse of the lord. Old people and handicapped people were being crushed in the melee and there was nothing we could do about it.

I was really glad that my aged parents were not with us.

And we were allowed a glimpse of the Lord from a distance of nearly 30-40 feet for a couple of seconds. You blink and you miss Him. For reasons unknown the Lord is in a dark room that is lit only by oil lamps so you can hardly see him. If you try to linger you are unceremoniously dragged and pushed out by the ubiquitous TTD staff.

The last few yards of the queue can be managed more humanely and more intelligently than how they do now. You really feel like herded cattle in this place.

If you truly believe that God is ubiquitous and omnipresent you would think long and hard before going here.

You won't catch me queuing up in Tirumala for a darshan again in a hurry.

Having said that I'll also say that I will climb up by walk (if I ever make up mind to go there again) and catch a taxi and immediately come down to Tirupati.


9  Thank Srikanth H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (2,034)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
  • More languages

1,844 - 1,848 of 2,034 reviews

Reviewed April 4, 2013

Frequent busses available from tirupati to tirumala even in the night. Rooms are available in plenty from 6:00 AM to 11:00 PM. Also there are many locker rooms near bus stand and at the main entrance.

One advice for all, never go on a weekend. It took us around 6-7 hours for actual darshan(while we were standing in special darshanam que) and I personally feel that the management of the crowd could be better. But when you finally got to see the GOD all your complain are gone.

4  Thank Aman_traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2013

It is popular & hence super crowded! If you manage to get darshan with special sevas you are good! It is sure commercial! It's quite a wait..but, I promise you will forget it all once you enter the main temple.. Toatlly divine experience... A place where you will experience great energy! Something totally special about this place you will surrender!

5  Thank NeeVas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 3, 2013

The line this time looked a little bit longer than usual...the temple was resplendent as always. The town itself is a beauty and maybe a lesson for the town planners and how to manage large crowds.

5  Thank SUBODI4R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 2, 2013

There is a common belief among peoples that If you visit Titupathi Temple so many good thing will happen in your life.This faith attracts lakhs of people to this Hill temple and made Tirupathi as one of the richest temple in the earth. The seven hills temple brings average 50000 to 75000 peoples every day.

This is my fourth visit to this temple. Peoples are going to the temple to relieve from their worldy burdens. But man made operating system created much more horible experience to everybody who wish to visit this temple. We will not come back again. This is the words from younger generation.The old generations are accepting this hardship to get the blessing of God. When I visited the temple 30 years ago , it was very easy to enter the temple within an hour. But I went to the temple on march 29/13 . I have to stand on the 300 rupees Q system for 10 hours. Peoples have to wait in Free darshan Q for 24 hours. we have to stand on Q out side the Q complex for 4 hours under the torching sun.

The Q complex system is very worst. They have lots of Ups and downs and so many turnings. The older people and ladies with children have to suffer lot. There is lots of loop holes to malpractise this Q system . In case of emergency you can not come out.You have to die without any first ID. There is no emergency phone system. You can not call anybody. Because electronic devices are deposited at the temple counter. You can not call anybody for help. I do not see any worst Q system anywhere in the world like Titupathi.

I would like to requst political leaders and high level government officials to stand on this Q and visit this temple. Then only, they will come to know the hardships faced by the ordinary people. But our system is like that. They have some VIP entrace to visit the temple.I could say, this is man made horrible experience. I entered the Q in the morning at about 10am and had the chance to worship the God at night 8pm. I got little sambar rice at a disposable plate to survive .If the TTD faisl to act atonce, there is a danger of human disaster.Then can have advance online reservation system to enter certain number of peoples to visit the temple every day. This old Q complex should be demolished. They have to construct underground Q system with airconditioning and emergency exit in every 100 feets and toilets. They have to provide medical center in every 500 feet.The TDD have enough money to create any kind of world class facility.

I would like to appreciate some facilities. Transport system is good. They have some fool proof security system to screen the passengers.It will cost only 40 rupees to reach the hill. The Laddu distributing system is fine. But removing the chappel in one -place and find it it after the darshan is a difficult job. All the accomdations facilities are maintained by TTD. But you have to reserve it at least three months in advance. if you visit there during weekend or holdidays, it is very difficult move around. but you will have some satisfaction after worshiping the God.

I would like to give some tips. It is better to start from Keel Tirupathi an early morning bus betweet 4am to 5 am from Tirupathi. You can reach within 1 hour to 1.15 hrs at the hills. Have lots of juice and water in your hand. Take some emergency medicine with you.Deposit your electronic items and chappel in a right place before enter into Q..But you have to stand on bare feet for so many hours. The current toilet facilities are not enough to handle this crowds.So little care should be taken to watch your stomach.Before going to hill temple, visit the Padmavathi thayar temple at keel Tirupathi. It is 5 km from central bus stand. It will cost only 6 rupees to reach the temple from central bus stand. The auto will cost 100 to 150 rupees. They have enough bus facility.. if you take the 100 ripees entrance ticket you can worship the Goddess within an hour.They have lots of good Hotel around tirupathi bus stand and railway station. it is advisable to make advance reservation. Food is not expensive in tirupathi. there is no liquor or non vegetarian food in tirumalai.Avoid week ends. You need two days hotel accomdation to visit this temple.

5  Thank Aathi3154
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Tirumala Temple also viewed

Tirupati, Chittoor District
Tirupati, Chittoor District
Tirupati, Chittoor District

Been to Tirumala Temple? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing