The capital city of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India. An eclectic confluence of rich culture and heritage, Hyderabad, along with its twin city Secunderabad, is a 400-year old city, which is much famed as the former seat of the extremely wealthy as well as influential Nizams.
Located on the Deccan Plateau, Hyderabad presents a varied landscape comprising majestic hills, lush green forests, sparkling lakes, and amazing rock formations. According to records, Hyderabad was founded by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah in the 16th century. However, the city has now evolved into a hi-tech city, with a thriving software as well as tourism industry.
Attractions in Hyderabad range from historical monuments consisting of prehistoric cairns and Buddhist, Hindu and Jain temples to interesting museums and exotic parks and gardens. One of the major landmarks of the city is Charminar, built during the 16th century by Sultan Mohammed Quli Qutub Shahi, in order to commemorate the end of the epidemic plaque in the city. The focal point of this 56 mt high building is its fantastic minarets. A small mosque, galleries, and arches can also be found within the building.
Another prime attraction is Hussain Sagar Lake, a beautiful monument erected in 1562 by Hazrat Hussain Shah Wali. A specialty of this lake is an enormous statue of Buddha found in its center. Further, this lake separates the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. A visit to Hyderabad is never complete without taking a tour to the much favored Golconda Fort, from where the world-famous Kohinoor diamond was extracted.
Equally fascinating are the fabulous mosques as well as some rare Islamic structure and tombs of the place. Perhaps most popular among them is Mecca Masjid, located adjacent to Charminar. One of the oldest as well as biggest mosques in the city, its construction was started by Abdullah Qutub Shahi in 1617 and completed by the Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb in 1693. Also, a great example of Islamic architecture is Falaknuma Palace – the residence of the last Nizam, which now houses a unique display of antiques, carpets, architectural gems, and diamonds.
A magnificent blend of Indian and Persian architecture, Qutub Shahi tomb is another great Islamic monument, which is also a symbol of the glorious past of the city. Additionally, the exquisite Paigah tombs are a fine example of Islamic monument in Hyderabad.
Apart from these, don’t forget to take a visit to the fascinating museums of the place, each of them throwing light on the interesting history of the place. Most significant among the city’s museums is Salar Jung Museum, which holds the distinction of being one of the world’s biggest one-man collections of antiques.
Showcased here are a rich variety of South Indian art, textile art, and Indian Miniature paintings. Included in the textile gallery collection are some amazing superb as well as rare displays like Kashmiri shawls and curtains dating back to the Mughal period. The painting gallery within the museum boasts of paintings of such renowned painters as Raja Ravi Varma and Chughtai. Attractions in museum also cover the sculptures carved out by Benzoni – a renowned Italian sculptor. There is also a section exclusively for kids. The Nizam’s museum, Health Museum, Birla Planetarium, State Archeological Museum, and Khajana Building Museum are the other worth visiting museums in the city.
Further, the city’s highlights also cover Birla Mandir, Birla Planetarium, Chote Hazrat ki Dargah, Nehru Zoological Park, Raymond’s tomb, St Joseph Cathedral, and St Mary’s Church, and Public Gardens. With a coastline stretching up to 1000 km, Hyderabad is also much sought after for its beaches nearby. Above all, while your stay at Hyderabad take an excursion to places like Golconda with mines boasting of some of the most famed diamond in the world; Warangal whose focal point is thousand-pillar temple; and Bidar – a destination with a splendid array of mosques, palaces, and tombs.
Along with other activities like sightseeing, Hyderabad offers superb options for shopping. No shopping in Hyderabad is complete without taking a shopping trip to amazing pearl bazaars of the city. Perhaps for this reason, Hyderabad is sometimes referred to as the ‘Pearl City of India.’ Dining options are also superb in Hyderabad, with a variety of world-class restaurants serving scrumptious cuisines.
Above all, Hyderabad’s accommodation options are also superb. No matter you want budget or luxury accommodation, the city has hotels and resorts to cater every type of vacationer. Many of them are located within the heart of the city, and hence are within the proximity to all world-class tourist attractions.
All of the accommodation choices, especially, luxury ones, are replete with most sophisticated facilities. Further, some of the top-rated hotels and resorts also render services in the form of packages inclusive of accommodation, traveling within the place, and food. Nowadays, many of the hotels, both budget and luxury accommodation, have their own sites on the web, which in turn enables the visitors to check price and room as well as make bookings in advance.