The city of Hyderabad is famous for irani chai, Charminar, spicy biriyani and pearls.
I love this quaint city with its old world charm and slow paced lifestyle which makes visitors feel at home. So when I was given the task of showing K around ,I decided to take him to these places that I felt captured the essence of this city so well.
1. Charminar :
All tourism posters of Hyderabad show this lovely monument located in the old city. Interestingly it was erected as a token of gratitude to the gods after the plague affecting the city had come to an end in 1591.
Surrounded by bazaars and thronged by people on almost all days I thought K deserved to see this place when it was quieter in the wee hours of the morning. So the two of us woke up early and admired the Charminar as It stood like a sentinel watching the residents stir awake as the sun rose. Visitors are allowed in between : 9am -5:30 pm and can climb up to 1 floor to be able to Get a panoramic view of the surrounding marketplace, the mecca masjid a few feet away and the hustle bustle below.
2. Govind bhai’s dosa:
Come Sunday my friends and I would head out for breakfast to Govind bhai’s food stall. It was located in ghanzi bazaar opposite Agra sweets just around the corner to Charminar. Since K and I were already in the area and were famished we went over and we patted ourselves on the back for the good decision. His tawa idlis and butter dosas were to die for. The stall opens at 6:30 am and closes at 1 pm. He has an outlet in Banjara hills as well on road no 14. Off late other dosa places around Hyderabad have started emulating his style of cooking, however I personally felt that his dosas are unparalleled.
3. Laad bazaar:
A trip to Charminar and Hyderabad is considered incomplete if you don’t venture into Laad bazaar. The bazaar stretches across.. And K surprisingly insisted that he wanted to go shopping in Laad bazaar . The sheer variety of wares being sold there took me by surprise. Semi precious stones, dress materials, sarees, bangles, bindis, jewellery, kolhapuri chappals, decorations, dry fruits, pearls and all kind of food. The best way of exploring the bazaar is ofcourse on foot so you can take a look at all the stores, just make sure you strike a good bargain.
4. Birla mandir :
This temple of marble has been built by the birlas and is located on hill fort road. The best time to visit is early morning to catch the sunrise or just before The sun sets. The main shrine is dedicated to lord venkateshwara and goddess padmavati,however there are shrines for the Buddha, lakshmi,ganesha,shakti ,shiva.
5.Bhongiri fort :
Tribhuvanagiri as it was originally called, was built in the 11th century by the chalukhyan ruler Tribhuvanamalla vikramaditya the sixth. The fort is built on a monolith rock which was recently discovered to be a batholith(which is a large igneous rock formed beneath the surface of the earth due to the intrusion and cooling of magma). Apart from being steeped in history this monument also offers adventure lovers an opportunity to try activities such as rock climbing and rapelling thanks to the rock climbing school located at the base.
6.Tank bund :
Hussain sagar or tank bund as its locally referred to, is a huge man made lake in the center of the city. There is a statue of the Buddha in the middle of tank bund and government boats ferry visitors across to the statue. The Buddha statue is said to be the largest monolith in Asia. There are 33 bronze statues of famous people who have played instrumental roles in their respective fields on the tank bund road. In the evenings the entire road around tank bund is lit up in lights and appears like a necklace, lending it the name necklace road.
Located near Golconda fort this place was built especially for Taramati who was the favorite courtesan of Abdullah qutub shah. The hall has been designed in such a way that her voice could be heard clearly while she sang all the way to Golconda fort Located 2 km away. The pavilion has 12 doorways that allowed for cross ventilation and also kept the hall cool during the summers. Present day it has been converted into an auditorium.
Located on the southern bank of the Musi river,this is a lovely museum to visit especially on a hot day when you would rather be indoors. The salar jung museum is believed to be the largest one man collection to be known and had many notable artifacts from all over the world. My all time favorites are the veiled Rebecca, the double statue of Mephistopheles and Margareta and the cuckoo clock at the center. The museum is the perfect place to spend hours marveling at the elegance and the creativity of the human mind and is sure to take the fancy of many a dreamer.
Have you been to Hyderabad? I would love to hear about which place you hold close to your heart,do write in.