Vijayawada, the city of victory and the land of Goddess Mahishasura Mardini, Lord Shiva and Arjuna is the commercial capital of the state of Andhra Pradesh and one of the most burgeoning metropolises of this part of Southern India. Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and English are the commonly spoken languages of Vijayawada and the chief cuisine of the city comprises of the typical South Indian food items such as Idli, Dosa, Pesarattu, Upma, Wada, Sambar, Chutney, Rice, Rasam, Pappu, Papadum, Curry, Pulusu, Pachadi, Podi, Pulihora, Kaaram Petti Koora, Vepudu, Majjiga, Yogurt, Poornalu, Laddu, Bhakshalu, Khaja, Payasam, Boondi, Palathalikalu, Telangana Sakinalu, and so on.
Geographically adjacent to three of the celebrated towns of Indian peninsula namely Kuchipudi, Mangalagiri and Kondapalli acclaimed for dance, temple and handicrafts respectively, the ethnicity of Vijayawada also demonstrates the impact of these cultural aspects of Andhra on it. Noted in all quarters for its rich historical, religious, cultural and mythological endowment and commended for its flourishing tourism industry Vijayawada is also renowned for its artistic rural product; the Kondapalli Toys. Reckoned as ‘Kondapalli Bommalu’ in Telugu, these toys framed in various shapes like mythological figures, men, women, animals and so on, are crafted from light white wood and painted in lively bright colors. This handcrafted product of Kondapalli has earned this town an international repute.
The economy of Vijayawada is mainly supported by agriculture and the chief crops produced here include Rice, Mango and Sugarcane. Other than agriculture, Vijayawada is also well-known for its diverse industries like automobile body building, iron and hardware, textile and other small scale industries. The Jawaharlal Nehru Auto Nagar Industrial Estate of Vijayawada happens to be one of the biggest hubs of automobile industry in the entire Asia continent. The city owns over 1500 automobile accessory units where more than 1, 00,000 workers are employed. The main market of Vijayawada is located in the old city and at the Besant Road where daily turnover in the garments business is reported to be around 10 crores. Some of the wholesale businesses of the city include iron, metal, garments, fancy items, pulses, cereals, mango, other edible products, fertilizers, pharmacy products and so on.
Vijayawada is hailed for its Krishna Pushkaran Festival that is celebrated on the banks of the river Krishna once in every 12 years. At the time of the Krishna Pushkaran Festival pilgrims from far and wide alight here and take the holy dip into the sin cleansing waters of the river Krishna. Many cultural programs as well as Krishna Pushkaran Fair are organized here and the terrain is bustling with the shops selling food, clothes, knick knacks, jewellery, toys, and handicrafts and so on.
Navaratri and Dussera are the most remarkable festivals of Vijayawada celebrated with incomparable pomp and enthusiasm at the Kanaka Durga Temple every year. During the ten days of Navaratri and Dussera Festival, the Goddess Kanaka Durga is decorated in 10 different forms viz. Swarna Kavachalankruta Kanaka Durga, Balatripura Sundari, Gayatri, Annapoorna Devi, Lalitha Tripura Sundari Devi, Sri Maha Lakshmi, Sri Maha Saraswathi, Durga, Mahishasura Mardini And Sri Rajarajeswari. Goddess Kanaka Durga is served with different ceremonial Poojas and devotees from all over the state pay a visit to this temple during the ten days of Navaratri. Other important festivals celebrated at Vijayawada consist of Deccan Festival and Lumbini Festival. Deccan Festival is celebrated for five days in the month of February while Lumbini Festival is celebrated in the month of December.
Vijayawada also recognized as ‘Vidyala Wada’ i.e. the land of education and ‘The Education Sahara’ is teeming with a number of prestigious schools, colleges, universities and other educational institutions of the Andhra Pradesh State. The specialty of the residents of Vijayawada is that they are fun loving and have an unsurpassed craze for movies and movie stars. Regional film stars have fanatical fans in Vijayawada and the city is brimming with over 50 cinema halls where all kinds of regional movies are screened.