Visakhapatnam was named after the god of valor, Vaishaka, as per Hindu
mythology. During 260 BC, it was a small fishing village and part of the Kalinga Empire under Ashoka
. Later, it was ruled by various Andhra kings and passed on to Vengi, to the Pallavas
and Gangas. The antiquity of the region is proved by its mention in the Ramayana
and the Mahabharata
. Before the British transformed it into a port town, it formed part of the
. It has now been completely transformed into a bustling industrial and commercial region.
The headquarters Visakhapatnam is popularly known as Vizag. The biggest shipbuilding yard in India and the headquarters of the Eastern Naval Command are located here. At a height of 358 m stands the most famous landmark, the Dolphin's Nose, a rocky cape in the port.
Toys made at the village
Etikoppaka are popular throughout India. Several flourishing industries include oil refineries, fertilizers, steel plants, and sugar refining and jute industries.
The best season to visit Vizag is December-March. Famous tourist spots are the Ramakrishna Beach on the east coast, Lawson's Beach, Rishikonda Beach,
Bheemunipatnam Beach, Kondakarla Bird Sanctuary, Dutch Tombs, Visakhapatnam Fort, VUDA Park and Borra Caves. Visakhapatnam has an airport. There are regular flights to Visakhapatnam daily from
Kolkata, Hyderabad and Chennai.
National Highway 5 (Howrah to Chennai) passes through Visakhapatnam District.