The Sri Gowthami Regional Library was started by poet and social reformer Nalam Krishna Rao as Gowthami Grandhalayam in 1898. Initially named Sri Veeresalingam library, since it was backed by the nationalist Kandukuri Veeresalingam Pantulu, it was housed in Nalam Choultry in Innispeta with a very small collection. Around the same time Addanki Satyanarayana established the Vasuraya Library. Gradually, the two merged and were jointly registered in 1920 under the Societies Registration Act. With the increase in collections the library moved to the Town Hall in Rajahmundry. Later land was bought at Lakshmivarapupeta and a rich landlord Kanchumarti Seetaramachandra Rao constructed a building in memory of his daughter Babayamma (one of the first women to complete matriculation in Rajahmundry) who died young. The Babayamma Hall, served as the library building until the 1970s and still exists, behind the new building.
With a good collection of both Telugu and English classics, including old editions of Shakespeare, the library was first managed by a committee elected by select lifetime members; in 1979, the government took over.
The biggest attraction in Rajahmundry is the river Godavari. The three bridges over the river are the longest bridges found in Andhra Pradesh. There are many beautiful ghats and parks on the river banks. Sir Arthur Cotton had great plans for Rajahmundry, he decided to build a anicut (dam) in Dowlaiswaram due to its proximity to a hill that suited his purpose. The dam consisted of four divisions: Dowlaiswaram Division, Ryali Branch Division, Madduru division and Vijjeswaram division. This was in all 900 yards (800 m) long and 9 feet (3 m) high. Asia's largest rail-cum-road bridge on the river Godavari linking Kovvur and Rajahmundry is considered to be an engineering feat. The First Godavari Rail Bridge was built in the year 1897, under the supervision of Er. Walton, a British Engineer, across the River Godavari connecting East Godavari with West Godavari. Stretching for three kilometres, constructed with stone masonry and steel girders, this bridge served the trains plying between Madras (Chennai) and Howrah. With increased traffic in the freight and passenger sectors, a rail-cum-road bridge was built a quarter century ago across the downstream of the river. A third railway bridge was built recently[when?] as the bridge built in 1897 was found not suitable for railway traffic. The Dhowleswaram bridge across the Godavari is seven kilometres south of Rajahmundry. Rallabandi SubbaRao museum has a collection of artifacts including coins, sculpture, pottery, inscriptions and palm-leaf manuscripts.
It is also one of the Hindu pilgrimage sites. There are a number of temples here like the Kotilingalu (10 million Sivalingas) temple on the bank of the river Godavari. The city hosts holy congregations called the Pushkaram  that takes place only once in every 12 years, which brings together millions of people from all over the country to take a holy dip in the river. The festival lasts for 12 days and people offer prayers and make offerings to their departed family members. It was celebrated last on August 2003. It was estimated that about 3.4 crores people took a holy dip here in Rajahmundry. In the time of Pushkaram, it is believed that if you take a holy dip you will get rid of all your sins and get blessing from God. A huge Krishna temple has been constructed by the ISKCON foundation on the banks of Godavari. Popularly called as Gowthami Ghat, it is a major attraction for young people as a recreational center. Place for many historic events
Papi kondalu and its surroundings located near Rajahmundry is a visual treat to the spectators because of its beautiful waterfalls at Perantala Palli. A boat cruise on the river Godavari to Papikondalu is a major attraction of this city. Another spot is Pattiseema. Pattiseema is known for its natural beauty. Much Tollywood (Telugu Film Industry) movie filming is done here. Pedapatnam Lanka is another beautiful place. It is called Konaseema because it is lush with greenery. Many sites in Konaseema are rich sources of oil and natural gas.
A very famous sweet in coastal Andhra Pradesh, Pootareku is made in Atreyapuram, a village near Rajahmundry. Rajahmundry is also known for rare breed of Pulasa Fish, which is available only once in a year that is during Monsoon season.
- Sri Kandukuri Veeresalingam (1848–1919), a renowned social reformer, is widely considered as the man who first brought about a renaissance in the Telugu people and Telugu literature. He worked for the upliftment of women.
- Julia Maitland, a campaigner for "native" education, founded a multilingual school and reading room in the town in 1837.
- Vundavalli Aruna Kumar, Member of Parliament
- Jaya Prada, actress and Member of Parliament
- Sundeep Nallamilli, Ethical Hacker
- Gorantla buthciah chowdary ,architect of modern rajahmundryex minister and senior politician
- Adikavi' Nannayya of the 11th century
- Sri Chilakamarti Lakshmi Narasimha Pantulu
- Vaddadi Subbaraya kavi
- 'Kavisarvabhowma' Sripada Krishnamurthi Sastry
- Nedunuri Gangadhram
- Sri Madhunapantula Satyanarayana Sastry
- Mallampalli Sarabheswara Sarma
- Puranapanda Radha Krishna Murty
- Bulusu Venkata Rama Murthy
- Madhira Krishna Murty Sastry
- R.M. Challa
- Jonnalagadda Mrityunjaya Rao
- Gadepalli Kukkuteswara Rao
- Pothukuchi Surya Narayana Murty
- Padala Rama Rao
- Viswanadha Gopala Krishna
Famous Poets And Pandits,Writers of 21th century
- Kottapalli Satya Srimannarayana
- Vadrevu China Veerabhadrudu
- Dr.Ravula Suryanarayana Murty
- Dr. Karri Rama Reddy
- Muppidi Prabhakar Rao
- Sannidhanam Narasimha Sarma
- Tallavajjula Patanjali Sastry ( Famous Environment Writer & Story Writer)
- Yendluri Sudhakar ( Famous Poet )
- Puranapanda Srinivas ( Sri Saila Deavasthanams Chief Advisor & Famous Writer)
- 'Hindi Astavadhani' Dr. Chebolu Seshagiri Rao
- Ommi Ramesh Babu ( ETV )
- Karri Nagarjuna Sri
- Bhaskarabhatla Ravi kumar ( Famous Film Writer )
- Pulagam Chinnarayana ( Famous Film Journalist )
- Tulli Raja Gopal ( Famous Journalist )
HospitalsThe District HQ Hospital of EG Dt is located in Rajahmundry. Over the last 3 decades, the number of hospitals and practicing doctors has gone up by leaps and bounds. Due to its strategic location, Rajahmundry is accessible to both districts of Godavari, Khammam Dt, parts of Visakha and Krishna Dts and to parts of Chattisgarh and Orissa state. Other prominent hospitals in and around Rajahmundry are:
- Alert Emergency Hospital
- Apex Hospitals
- Adarsh hospitals
- G.S.L General Hospital & Medical College
- G.S.L. Trust (Cancer Hospital)
- Gowthami Nursing Home
- Godavari Nursing Home
- Life Emergency Hospital
- Susrutha Nursing Home
- Swatantra Insttute of Medical Sciences (SIMS)
- Swatantra Trauma & Emergency Services
Clothing and gold businessesRajahmundry is known for its clothes market. In and around Rajahmundry, there are many cooperative handloom houses where one can get fine quality of Sarees with different designs and borders, suiting and shirting in large varieties of cloths from cotton to silk.
Rajahmundry is also coming up with many branded readymade stores. Recently Alok Industries Limited has opened its large format store H&A in Rajahmundry which is largest in India. One can find good variety of Mens formals and casuals there. Its first of its kind to offer western style Womens Garments and Kids garments in the city. There are other stores like Lee, Cotton County, Levis Etc.
Industrial developmentBesides natural beauty, Rajahmundry has equipoise development of Industrial sector. Rajahmundry also hosts a few corporates and multinationals as part of its industrial development, such as
- ITC Limited, ILTD Division,
- GlaxoSmithKline (Horlicks Factory)
- Andhra Pradesh Paper Mills and few more paper mills like The Coastal Paper Mills (P) limited, Kadiyam Paper Mills etc. in and around Rajahmundry.
- GVK Power Plant- Jegurupadu nearby Rajahmundry by GVK Industries Ltd.
- Multiple gas based Power Plants by GMR Group, as GMR Rajahmundry Limited.
- The Central Tobacco Research Institute(CTRI) has its Research and Development center in Rajahmundry. Its operations run in association with Indian Leaf Tobacco Division(ILTD).
- Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC).
- Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL)
- Rajahmundry is the head-quarters of ONGC's Krishna Godavari basin and which is now regarded as crux of ONGC's operations.
- Besides the above there are few Spinning Mills and pharmaceutical companies in and around Rajahmundry
- Schlumberger is the world's leading supplier of technology, integrated project management and information solutions to customers working in the oil and gas.
- Bharat Petroleum
- Sarva raya sugars ( coco cola bottling unit )