Situated along the banks of the Musi River, Hyderabad was established in 1591 by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, and remained under the rule of the Qutb Shahi dynasty for almost a century before the Mughals occupied the region. It is also called the, “City of Pearls”, as it was known as a pearl and diamond trading centre. It is a city with many shades and is a melting pot of cultures, old traditions and modernity. On one hand it is home to some of India’s most impressive Islamic influenced architectures while on the other hand it is teeming with malls, pubs and sleek restaurants.The city is a treat for the ardent lovers of history and architecture. It flaunts the amalgamation of both tradition and modernity immaculately. For the first time travelers to this city, here are the top 5 must visit places which you can’t afford to skip.
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This fort is one of the most impressive and spectacular forts of India. The name Golconda is believed to be inspired from “Golla Konda” which means “Shepherd’s Hill.” It is listed as an archaeological treasure on the official “List of Monuments” by the Archaeological Survey of India. It consists of four distinct forts with a 10 km long outer wall with 87 semi-circular bastions some of them which are still mounted with cannons, eight gateways, and four drawbridges, with a number of royal apartments, temples, mosques, stables, etc. inside. The fort is a work of outstanding artistry and workmanship. The fort at one point of time was home to some of the precious diamonds such as the Hope diamond, Nassak diamond and the Koh-i-Noor diamond which was considered to be one of India’s most precious gems. Surely a place not to be missed.
The Charminar or the “Four Minarets” is truly a global icon of Hyderabad. It was constructed in 1591 and is basically a monument and an Iconic Mosque. It was built to commemorate the end of the plague. It was constructed of granite and limestone and is an architectural marvel known for its plenitude of stucco decorations and arrangement of its balustrades and balconies.The structure is a good example of Indo-Islamic architecture with a lot of Persian influences. It is undoubtedly one of the major tourist attractions of Hyderabad. For the foodies, this is also one of the ideal places to visit, to satiate their appetite as one gets the best of Hyderabad street food near Charminar.
Hussain Sagar Lake
Hussain Sagar is a necklace shaped lake which was built by Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah, and named after Hussain Shah Wali. A large monolithic statue of Gautama Buddha was erected in 1992, which stands on Gibraltar Rock in the middle of the lake. It also separates Hyderabad from its twin city Secunderabad. Though it is an artificial lake, it was declared as the ‘Heart of the World’ by UNWTO on 27 September 2012, on the occasion of World Tourism Day, for being the World’s largest Heart Shaped Mark. One can also enjoy boating and parasailing activities and the view of the lake is spell binding at night.
Qutb Shahi Tombs
The Qutb Shahi Tombs are located in the Ibrahim Bagh, close to the famous Golconda Fort. It is one of the most historical places and contains the tombs of all the seven rulers of Qutub Shahi Dynasty. There are a total of 21 magnificent granite tombs which are domed structures built on a square base surrounded by pointed arches, an exclusive style that blends Persian, Pashtun and Hindu forms. Amongst the finest is that of Mohammed Quli, the founder of Hyderabad. These tombs are surrounded by landscaped gardens which add to the charm of the surrounding areas. Do visit the tombs to pay a tribute to the Emperors of Golconda.
Salar Jung Museum
The Salar Jung Museum is an art museum and one of the three National Museums of India.It is named after the Salar Jung family, a noble family of erstwhile Hyderabad state. Salar Jung was an adventurer who traveled all over the world in the 19th and 20th century collecting souvenirs of his travels. This museum is home to his accumulation of relics. It has a collections of sculptures, paintings, manuscripts, carvings, artefacts, etc., from different parts of the world. It is located at Dar-ul-Shifa, on the southern bank of the Musi River in the city of Hyderabad and is one of the largest museums in the world. The museum is semi- circular in shape with 38 galleries, spread on two floors. Each gallery is huge and has many artefacts on display including ones dating back to the 4th century. It also contains famous Quran collection, from all over the world in different fonts and designs.
Hyderabad has an unadulterated charm of its own. I think it is now time for you to pack your bags and head towards this beautiful city and get soaked in its charm.
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