A vibrant and colorful city, there are innumerable places to visit in Hyderabad that are sure to captivate the minds of the tourists and visitors. It has superb instances of culture and traditions in the modern society. The city is full of fascinating and scintillating sights that provide an opportunity to the spectators to have a glimpse of the luxurious lives of the erstwhile rulers of our country.
Hyderabad, the city that was once well known for its opulence and grandeur, has become a heritage site today with its mosques and palaces that remind the people of its rich history. From colorful bazaars for an amazing shopping experience, to interesting historic monuments, from mouth-watering cuisines to intriguing pieces and examples of art and sculpture, Hyderabad is a bag full of surprises that mesmerizes the tourists. Due to the warmth and hospitality of the people, the city has rightfully been nicknamed the city of smiles. Hyderabad has a tropical climate. Hence, winter season is the ideal time to visit the city as the weather is quite pleasant. Out of the numerous places of interest in Hyderabad, the most popular destinations and places to visit in Hyderabad can be listed as follows:
Nizam’s Museum or the Purani Haveli:
The Purani Haveli was the residence of Mahbub Ali Pasha, the sixth Nizam. The enormity and the details of the neo-classical building built in the 19th century demonstrate the lavishness of the former ruler and fill the spectator with awe. It houses the massive 786 sq- ft wardrobe of the Nizam divided into many number of closets and containing a mechanical elevator for easier access. A well-circulated story goes by saying that the Nizam had once purchased the whole stock of a Scottish factory consisting of 75 similar tweed suits just because he was very much impressed with its design. Purani Haveli is also a storehouse of rare pieces of art and objects of china and silver.
Another museum, containing more than 40000 eclectic pieces of art, was once a residence of Salarjung III, ruler of Hyderabad between late 18th century and early 19th century. The museum contains fascinating sculptures of stone and bronze, Islamic manuscripts, objects of ivory and marvelous Mughal jade collection. There is a 13th century Koran containing signatures of 3 Mughal rulers. It also contains some European oil paintings belonging to the 19th century including a Canaletto, a Landseer and a Guardi. The awe-inspiring collection is highly revered by art lovers.
The Badshahi Ashurkhana or the Royal House of Mourning was built by Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah, the 5th Qutb Shahi Ruler in 1595. The purpose of the building was to serve as a worshippers’ hall for the Shia Muslims during the month of Muharram. The walls of the building are studded with a breathtaking variety of gems and precious stones. It also contains ‘alams’ made of gold and silver that are carried in the Muharram procession.
Charminar is the most famous tourist destination in Hyderabad. Built by Emperor Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah in 1591, it has four minarets that soar to 177 feet high. The top floor of the Charminar has the oldest mosque of the city. There are many stories regarding the reason it was built. Some say that it was the place, where the emperor saw his lover, a Hindu dancer Bhagmati, for the first time. While a lot of people believe that, it was built as a token of thanksgiving when the plague epidemic ended. Located near Charminar, Lad Bazaar is the favorite shopping destination for bangles, embroidery, herbal products, and bridal trousseau. One can also visit Jami Masjid that is situated in the vicinity of the same. It is the second oldest mosque in Hyderabad.
The Mecca Masjid
at Hyderabad is located very near from Charminar. This mosque was established by Sultan Mohd. Qutub Shah in 1614 and its construction was completed by the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in 1694. It is famous as the biggest mosque in South India. It is also known for the arch of the mosque which has been built by the bricks brought from the sacred city of Mecca. There are tombs of Asaf Jahi rulers in the abutting chamber of the mosque.
Regarded as the most beautiful constructions in the entire city, was built in 1671 as a rare and exquisite piece of Qutb Shahi architecture. Recognized for its grandeur and intricate design, the Toli Masjid stands proudly, marked by its minarets of 20 meters high each, leading the captivated and curious visitors inside to its arched hallways and holy rooms. Feel the power of the Toli Masjid embrace you with its outstanding beauty and prominent prayer hall that holds a touching inscription for all who grace the building with their presence.
Built in 1872, Falaknuma Palace is one of the most striking examples of the richness and affluence of the Nizams of Hyderabad. The portico is constructed in Palladian fashion whereas the back portion is a mix of indo-saracenic domes and cupolas. A substantial amount of money was spent on the interior decoration by the designers of Florence. The French tapestries and furniture along with Italian marbles lent a splendid look to the palace. The most memorable guest who stayed here was King George V.
Nehru Zoological Park:
Among the many places to visit in Hyderabad, Nehru Zoological Park is a must-visit destination for nature and animal lovers. The biggest zoo in India, it is a home to more than 250 species of birds and animals. The excellent facilities and well-maintained condition of the park never fails to impress the visitors.
The illuminated sight of the Birla Mandir in the evening is a breathtaking sight which no visitor can easily forget. The captivating structure is built on the ‘kala pahad’, a hillock. It is made up of marble from Rajasthan and devoted to Lord Venkateshwara.
Constructed in 1925, Osmania Hospital is a magnificent stone building with high-rising domes that was built after a disastrous flood in 1908 during the reign of the 7th Nizam. It is an interesting blend of western design and Islamic detailing and one of the touristic places to visit in Hyderabad.
Asman Garh Palace:
Sir Osman Jah, who was once the Prime Minister of the State and a Royal belonging to the Paigah family, built this structure. Currently converted to an archaeological museum, it is located near the TV tower of Hyderabad and is well known for its granite towers and dome-shaped windows.
Snow World is one of the most unique, intriguing and captivating attractions in the entire city of Hyderabad. This creative destination is a beloved favourite among all visitors, and offers a splendid opportunity and experience to all. With the warm, summer atmosphere of Hyderabad, no one would expect to stumble across an amusement park that allows it to snow! As the biggest snow park in the entire world, this is truly a great place to capture memories in. Enjoy the pleasures of tobogganing, skating and snow ball fights all arranged here at Snow World in Hyderabad.
Moula Ali Dargah
The warm presence of Moula Ali Dargah has made this beloved attraction one of the top destinations in the city. Built in loving dedication to Hazrat Ali, the son-in-law of the famous Prophet Mohammad, the Moula Ali Dargah is regarded as having great powers and riveting tales surrounding it. The 400 step climb is a refreshing, eye-opening experience for the thousands of travelers that come from far and near to witness this peaceful, serene and mystical destination. Enjoy the Moula Ali Dargah and all it has to offer. You will truly feel a calmness wash over you when reaching the destination, after a self-discovering adventure.
The first Botanical Gardens in Andhra Pradesh, spread over 120 acres, when completed will have 19 sections (Vanams). Already open to public is the first phase, with the completion of 5 sections. The sections include medicinal plants, timber trees, fruit trees, ornamental plants, aquatic plants, bamboos and so on. The Park has been designed to have large water bodies, rolling meadows, natural forests, rich grasslands and exquisite rock formations – all providing visitors an unforgettable experience.
St. Josephs Cathedral
St. Josephs Cathedral is known worldwide for its splendour and stunning, impressive qualities. Recognized as one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the city, the five giant bells situated at the top of the church simply add to its exquisite reform. The regal and royal presence of the St Josephs Cathedral makes it one of the highest regarded attractions in the city. Witness these famous bells in all of their glory. Brought all the way from Italy in 1892, the legendary bells of the St Josephs Cathedral has been constant in drawing in visitors due to their ancient appeal. It is said that the blessing of the bells drives all negative energy and evil spirits away from each person who enters the cathedral.
Chowmahalla Palace is near the Charminar. It comprises of four palaces. The Asif Jahi dynasty made this palace as their seat. The official guests as well as royal visitors were entertained here. The heart of the Chowmahalla Palace is called Khilwat Mubarak, and houses the Clock Tower, Council Hall and Roshan Bungalow. Roshan Bungalow was named after the sixth Nizam’s mother, Roshan Begum. The palace was restored and opened to public in January 2005. After five years of documentation and restoration work, the first courtyard regained its former glory.
The ISKCON Temple
The ISKCON Temple of Hyderabad is one of the famous of the group of temples contributed by the ISKCON organization. With so much recognition and appreciation for this stunning piece of inspiration, the ISKCON Temple is generally a thriving and active place to be. Attracting devoted worshippers from all over the world, as well as curious visitors and eager learners, the ISKCON Temple takes pride in its large gatherings and exciting programmes. Visit today and join in on the touching, insightful celebrations surrounded by art and a great variety of company.
Situated in the western sector of Hyderabad city is the Golconda Fort about 8.5 km away from the Hussein Sagar Lake. The outer fort consists of 3 square km area and is 4.8 km in length built around an old settlement. It was built on a hill in 1143. During 14th and 17th century, this fort was enlarged and strengthened by the Qutab Shah dynasty and became the capital. The fort contains ruins of palaces, mosques and a hill top pavilion. It also served as the king’s stronghold, administrative center and market place.
Another attraction at Madhapur besides Hi-tec city in Hyderabad is the 30-acre village, which showcases arts and crafts of the country. India is an ocean of various arts and crafts but the talent of most of the artisans and artists goes unrecognized. To encourage them and give the necessary boost to their art, the crafts village hosts annual bazaars, where artists and artisans from all over the country exhibit their talent.
Hussain Sagar Lake
Excavated in 1562 A.D. by Hussain Shah Wali during the time of Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah, the lake has a promenade that is a busy thoroughfare today. Boating and water sports are a regular feature in the Hussainsagar. One of the World’s tallest monolithic statues of the Buddha stands on the ‘Rock of Gibraltar’, in the middle of the lake. Added to all these, AP Tourism has additional boating facilities like speed boats, motor boats, 48 seater launch etc. Starlit dinner on-board and private parties also can be arranged on the Launch.
Taramati Baradari is located at Ibrahimbagh, on the Osman Sagar (Gandipet) Road, close to Golconda. The complex is spread over a sprawling 7-acre area amidst lush green environs with the backdrop of the famed Golconda Fort. The heritage monument built by the Seventh Sultan of Golconda is accessed from the complex. With two fully equipped theatres, Taramati Baradari Culture Village is the perfect venue for music concerts, performing arts, social events etc. The Baradari illuminated in dynamic lighting forms the backdrop of all activities.
Ramoji Film City
The world’s largest film production complex, Ramoji, is situated on the outskirts of the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. Located 35 km. from Hyderabad, it is spread over 2,000 acres of land studded with hills, vales and lakes, has few parallels as both a tourist attraction and major film-making facility.
KBR National Park
One of the largest parks within the city KBR National Park is a Southern tropical deciduous forest and the last vestigial representative of the endemic flora of Hyderabad region, with over 100 species of birds, 20 species of reptiles and 15 species of butterflies.
Qutub Shahi Tomb:
The tombs of the legendary Qutub Shahi kings lie about a kilometre away from Banjara Darwaza of the Golconda Fort. Planned and built by the Qutub Shahi is themselves, these tombs are said to be the oldest historical monuments in Hyderabad. They form a large group and stand on a raised platform. The tombs are built in Persian, Pathan and Hindu architectural styles using grey granite, with stucco ornamentation, the only one of its kind in the world where an entire dynasty has been buried at one place.
The Tank Bund is the dam constructed on Hussein Sagar Lake and acts as a link between the two cities of Hyderabad and Sikandarabad. Cool breeze caresses one’s temples and is very welcoming. Thirty three elegant statues of eminent historic personalities like Nannayya, Tikkana, Errana, Rudramma, Molla, Sri Sri, Jashua, Annamayya, Tyagayya, Vemana and Pingali Venkaiah greet one when one over looks the water body. This tank bund was built by Hazrat Hussein Shah and has always been a major tourist attraction. To add more attraction to it, a monolithic statue of Buddha is situated on the heart of the lake making it a very beckoning place to visit.
This is famous, colourful shopping centre of the old city, tucked away in one of the streets leading off from Charminar. Bridal wear, Pearls and the traditional Hyderabadi glass and stone studded bangles are sold here.