Tourist Attractions in Hyderabad

Hyderabad is the capital and largest city of the South Indian state of Telangana. It was ruled by the Qutub Shahis, Mughals and the Nizams which shaped up its history. The city is noted for its monuments which includes the masterpiece of Charminar and the fort of Golconda. There are multitude of masjids, temples, churches and bazaars in the city. Tourism industry forms an important role in the economy of Hyderabad. Tourism-related fairs are held regularly in the city. In 2010, the city was listed among the Gamma+ World City by the global city index produced by GaWC, and in 2011 the city was rated nineteenth in the world by The New York Times in The list of 41 Places to Go in 2011. It was ranked 3rd Best City to Travel in 2013 by Lonely Planet As of 2011, The tourism promotion budget for the city was increased to INR520 million. Andhra Pradesh, which is India's top domestic tourist destination, receives up to 157 million visits, and reached 1.5 million international tourists, which generated US$23 million in revenue. The city houses famous historical sites including Charminar, UNESCO Asia Pacific Heritage site of the Chowmahalla Palace, Salar Jung Museum (among the world largest private collection museum) as well as art galleries, libraries, sports complexes, museums and theatres.

Hyderabad Tourism                                                                                                            

Historical Monuments in Hyderabad                                                                                    


Falaknuma Palace | Chowmahalla Palace | Asman Garh Palace | Taramati Baradari  | Purani Haveli | King Kothi Palace | Bella Vista

Religious places      in Hyderabad                                                                                                

Makkah Masjid Charminar |Shahi MasjidAnanda Buddha Vihara | Birla Mandir | Sanghi Temple | Chilkur Balaji Temple | Jagannath Temple | Ratnalayam Temple | Sri Lakshminarasimha Swamy Temple Yadagiri Gutta| Wargal Saraswati Temple 

Museums and Planetarium    in Hyderabad                                                                                

Salar Jung Museum | City Museum, Hyderabad | AP State Archaeology Museum | Surendrapuri | Birla Science Museum | Birla Planetarium | KiDiHOU Children's Play Museum |

Lakes of Hyderabad                                                                                                

Hussain Sagar | Osman Sagar | Durgam Cheruvu | Himayat Sagar | Shamirpet Lake | Rukn ud Daula Lake | Mir Alam Tank | Saroornagar Lake | Gandipet Lake

Parks and Gardens     in Hyderabad                                                                                                   

NTR Gardens | Indira Park | Kotla Vijayabhaskara Reddy Botanical Gardens | Lumbini Park | Lotus Pond | Ramoji Film City |  Ocean Park | Mount Opera| Dhola-ri-Dhani | Dream Valley Park| Jal Vihar Park 

Wildlife  in Hyderabad                                                                                                                           

Others     in Hyderabad                                                                                                                          

Ravindra Bharati | Necklace road | Laad Bazaar  | Hyderabad Pearls | Shilparamam | Keesara | Rachakonda 


Golkonda FortGolconda (sometimes spelled as Golkonda) Fort was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Golconda which flourished in the 14th to 16th century. It is situated 11 kilometers from Hyderabad, the capital of the state of Andhra Pradesh. With walls ranging from 17 to 34 feet broken by 87 semi-circular bastions, some reaching 60 feet in height, and built on a granite hill that is 400 feet high, it remains one of India’s most magnificent fortress complexes. 


Golkonda FortNo visit to Hyderabad should be undertaken without visiting the grand and majestic centerpiece of the city that is Charminar. Translated roughly as “Four Towers” or “Mosque of the Four Minarets”, the Charminar is also called by some as the Arc de Triomphe of the East and is one of the most important monuments of Hyderabad. 


Qutub Shahi TombsLocated about a kilometer north from Golconda Fort, the Qutub Shahi tombs represent the most authentic and majestic display of the Qutub Shahi dynasty architectural traditions today. The grandeur of the tombs is ensconced amidst the beautiful and picturesque landscape and gardens of Ibrahim Bagh, and the tombs themselves are dedicated to the seven Qutub Shahi kings who ruled Golconda for nearly 170 years. 


Yadagirigutta TempleLegend has it that a sage named Yadavarishi, the son of the great sage Rishyasrunga, did penance and meditation in a cave and asked for the blessings of Lord Narasimha, an incarnation of the Hindu deity Lord Vishnu. So pleased was Lord Narasimha to Yadavarishi that he appeared to him in five different forms: Jwala, Yogananda, Lakshminarasimha, Gandabherunda, and Ugra. The legend goes that the first form was too intense and fiery (it was Lord Narasimha as a fire) that it was too much for the yogi, so Narasimha adopted the second, more peaceful, form (Lord Narasimha in a Yoga posture with open palms on the knees). This still didn’t satisfy the yogi though and wanted to see him with his counterpart, the goddess Lakshmi, so Narasimha appeared with the goddess on his lap. The place where all this was supposed to have taken place was a natural cavern atop a hill. The temple was then built in the same area.


Ramoji Film CityIf the United States has Universal Studios, then India has Ramoji Film City, the world’s largest integrated film studio complex. Spread over 2,000 acres of land studded with hills and lakes, it is India’s filmmakers’ first choice when it comes to making their films as it is essentially an unlimited area of creativity for any major or minor film production. Every facility a filmmaker could ever want can already be found there: 50 studio floors, support systems, high-tech laboratories, outdoor locations, up-to-date technology, greenery, and the wonderful hillscapes. 


Paigah TombsOne of the more influential and powerful families of the Hyderabad State aristocracy during the 18th century are the noble families of Paigah. Claiming to have descended from Hazrath Omar bin Al-Khattab, the second caliph of Islam, the Paigah nobles tend to be richer than the average Indian Maharajah and they alone hold exclusive rights to maintain their own court, their own palaces, and their own private armies that often numbered to the thousands. The word Paigah is Farsi for “footstool” of which an English equivalent would be “right-hand man”.


HITEC CityAt the heart of Hyderabad’s technological progress juggernaut is the cybercity called HITEC City. The name stands for Hyderabad Information Technology Engineering Consultancy City and it provides a stark contrast to the historically-laden monuments and sites present in Hyderabad. The formation and birth of the HITEC City is the consummation of a state’s vision of becoming a contender in the information technology boom, largely reminiscent of Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah’s dreams when he started building Hyderabad itself. 


Dhola Ri DhaniIn the case of Dhola-Ri-Dhani, the experience offered is that of a genuine ethnic Rajasthani culture, with a dash of fantasy. Located in Kompally, in the Medchal highway in Hyderabad (and about 11 kilometers from Secunderabad), the place offers tourists and visitors the chance to see an amalgamation of two cultures. Its design and style allows the visitors to experience the culture of Rajasthan without having to leave Hyderabad. 


ShilparamamHyderabad is grooming up to be India’s hi-tech cybercity thanks to the various IT/ITES companies coming in in the city’s cyberparks and complexes. In spite of the influx of modern technology however, the city still has one of its feet planted squarely in the grounds of tradition and culture. This is never more evident than in the construction of Shilparamam, an arts and crafts village an hour or so away from Hyderabad. 


Birla PlanetariumNestled on top of the panoramic hillock of Naubat Pahad right in the heart of Hyderabad, the Birla Planetarium is a testament and tribute to the advances man has made in understanding the heavens and the stars since the dawn of civilization. This dome-shaped architectural masterpiece was inaugurated on September 8, 1985, by Late Sri N.T. Rama Rao, being the first phase of B.M. Birla Science Center. Recognized both as an institution of higher learning and a research and development institute, the Science Center is one of the most prestigious institutions in India. It is instrumental in both the dissemination and popularization of science in the country, as well as formal and non-formal education and research. 


HITEC Citythe Mir Alam Tank has contributed incessantly to the city for the past 200-odd years since it was built; it has provided drinking water to the people of Hyderabad for 125 years before both Osman Sagar and Himayat Sagar reservoirs were finally built. During that time, waters coming from Mir Alam Tank were said to be so sweet and pure that people who have tasted it were said to have carried containers of it whenever they went out of Hyderabad. 


Laad BazaarIn Hyderabad, the place to go whenever a visitor needs to buy something that is uniquely Hyderabadi is, without a doubt, Laad Bazaar. The name is most probably derived from the word “laad” which means lacquer, the main material used to make one of their most popular items, the bangles. The market is located along one of the four main roads that shoot out from another historic tourist attraction, Charminar, and it is very old, becoming popular across the ages for selling bangles and other uniquely Indian stuff. In fact, any visit to Andhra Pradesh and Hyderabad is considered incomplete unless this market is visited.


Nagarjuna Sagar DamThe Nagarjuna Sagar dam currently holds the record of being the tallest masonry dam (that is, a dam made by way of masonry and is of either gravity or arch type) in the world. Standing at a height of 124 meters, a length of 1 kilometer, and holding back 11,742 million cubic liters of Krishna River water, it is not really surprising if one starts to feel a rush of sheer awe and insignificance when standing before such a massive marvel of architecture and engineering. It also happens to have created the world’s third largest man-made lake, creating a reservoir that plays a very vital role in the irrigation of vast tracts of land in the surrounding region. 


Osmania UniversityIn all of India, few universities are perhaps as well-known or as highly venerated as Osmania University, one of the oldest “modern” universities in India. It is the seventh oldest institution of higher learning in all of India, and the first in Hyderabad back when it was a princely state. It has ten faculties, 52 departments, and with more than 500 constituent campuses and affiliated colleges that offer almost all courses at all levels, ranging from diploma to post-doctoral degrees. It is also considered to have one of the best management institutions under the university system. All in all, it is one of the largest university systems in the Indian subcontinent. 


Raymond TombBack in 1775, a Frenchman by the name of Michel Joachim Marie Raymond left France for Pondicherry, India. His excuse to his father was that he’ll become a merchant; instead, he became a soldier. In 1786, he joined the army of the ruling Nizam of Hyderabad as an ordinary soldier but eventually he was given a 300-strong army under his command. He was appointed as the Amar-e-Jinsi or the Appointer of Ordinance in 1796 and under this title, he established several cannon and cannonball factories. During his tenure as Appointer, cannons and ammunitions were forged, as well as several foundries; Gunfoundry near Fathe Maidan was the most famous of the remaining foundries today. 


Hyderabad Places of WorshipHyderabad is primarily a fusion of two cultures: Hindu and Islam, and this fusion is never more apparent than the places of worship that dot this historical and beautiful city. What’s more, these religious sanctuaries hold their own in terms of aesthetic appeal as well, with some becoming architectural wonders that evoke more than religious feelings of wonder. Most of these structures have withstood the tests of time and the elements, holding out the example of peaceful co-existence of cultures then, now, and in the future generations. Visitors should visit the following religious places regardless of their culture and religion. 


Hyderabad LakesAside from the historical monuments found in Hyderabad, there are also several lakes that are considered must-visits for tourists who go there. Some of these lakes also have historical values attached to them, while most are just beautiful bodies of water where people can unwind away from the hustle and stressful day at work. During weekends, the lakes are a favourite spot for families to hold their picnics and outdoor activities. 


Chilkur Balaji TempleAbout 25 to 30 kilometers from Hyderabad is Chilkur, a sleepy, unassuming village that is pretty much like any other rural village in the region. However, it has become one of the more important pilgrimage sites in the state of Andhra Pradesh. This is because Chilkur is the site of one of the more popular temples in Hyderabad, the Chilkur Balaji temple. It is also known as the Visa Balaji temple because it is particularly popular with devotees who want to get visas for going overseas. It is not uncommon to see a lot of young people paying their respects to the temple.


Gandipet Amusement ParksThere is a reason that makes Gandipet unique from the other popular lakes in Hyderabad: the inclusion of amusement parks. Gandipet has amusement parks that are considered among its main attractions. These parks are a hit especially among kids as the rides they offer are comparable to other popular amusement parks in the country. 


Snow WorldRecognized as India’s first snow-themed park, Snow World was developed and conceptualized by Ocean Park Multi Tech Limited (OPML), the same company that developed Hyderabad’s famous Ocean Park Theme Resort. It also has the distinction of being the world’s biggest snow-themed park, covering a total area of 17,000 square feet. It is located in the Lower Tank Bund Road, right behind Indira Park. 


Mount OperaThe state of Andhra Pradesh may have many resorts to its name, but arguably none is as famous or as luxurious as Mount Opera. Backed by the well-respected Sreemitra Estate Pvt. Ltd., a company that is a pioneer when it comes to entertainment-based themes, Mount Opera is a multi-themed park resort that is not just known within the city of Hyderabad, but also on a global scale, when it comes to wholesome entertainment and relaxation. 


Birla Science MuseumThe Birla Science Museum is the second phase of the B.M. Birla Science Center, one of India’s most prestigious institutions for dissemination and promotion of science to the public. Together with the Birla Planetarium and the Birla Dinosaurium, the Birla Science Museum was created to educate the masses about the fundamentals of science in a manner that is interactive, exciting, and fresh — a far cry from just reading about it in textbooks and journals. 


King Kothi PalaceKing Kothi Palace, a sprawling complex of mixed architectural style that was the home of the seventh Nizam, Osman Ali Khan, otherwise known as Asaf Jah VII. The complex is located in Hyderabad, and like most of the palaces and buildings built by the prolific Nizams during their glorious reign, it has a hint of fusion between European traditions with Islamic and Hindu motifs and architecture. The result is one that is uniquely Hyderabadi, and is aesthetically pleasing to lovers of both architectural styles. 


Chowmahalla PalaceIf something has the distinction of being the center of a rich, historically established city, then chances are high that that something is breathtaking and grand. Such is the case of the magnificent Chowmahalla Palace, the former seat of the Asaf Jahi dynasty and where the Nizams used to entertain their royal visitors and high-ranking guests. Built more than 200 years ago, in the 18th century, the Chowmahalla Palace has long been known for its unique style and elegance. “Chow” means four in Urdu and “Mahalat”, the plural of “Mahalel” means palaces. Literally, the name means “Four Palaces”. It has now been meticulously restored by the government so it has gotten back much of its former glory. 


Legislative AssemblyEnclosed in the Public Garden at the heart of Hyderabad City, the Legislative Assembly of Hyderabad is the seat of the state legislature of Andhra Pradesh. It can be considered the heart and soul of Hyderabad as it is where the power of the state’s laws and legislation are made and passed. Aside from the important function it serves, the Legislative Assembly also happens to be one of Hyderabad’s most majestic buildings, outside of the actual palaces of the Nizams. As such, it is easily one of the most imposing building in the city, and is becoming a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. 


Botanical GardenAvid horticulturists and tourists with natural green thumbs will be glad to know that when they decide to visit Hyderabad, they will already have a place waiting for them. The Hyderabad Botanical Garden is a 120-acre area of land in the Kothaguda Reserve Forest especially allotted to preserve different varieties of plants and trees, both to be enjoyed by future generations and also to educate the people. It is developed by the Forest Department is being groomed by the Tourism Department to be a major tourist attraction. 


Taramati BaradariNear Gandipet Lake, in Hyderabad, there stands a structure that is a king’s ode to one of his favourite subjects. The story goes that the seventh sultan of Golconda, Abdullah Qutub Shah, had two ravishing dancing girls and courtesans, Taramati and Premamati, who would often dance on ropes tied between their pavilion and the sultan’s balcony. Among the two, Abdullah Qutub Shah’s favorite was Taramati, much like how his grandfather, the founder of Hyderabad, had Bhagmati as his favored courtesan. 


Bhongir FortThe fort is built upon a single rocky hill in Bhongir, a town in Andhra Pradesh, located in the Nalgonda district of the state. It is located some 48 kilometers away from Hyderabad. The Western Chalukya ruler, Tri-bhuvana-malla Vikram-aditya VI, built the fort from one single monolithic rock in the 12th century; as a result, the fort was originally named Tribhuvanagiri, after him. Gradually, across the centuries, the name metamorphosed into Bhuvanagiri (or Bhuvana’s Hill), and eventually, into Bhongir, its present name. The hill upon which the fort itself is built is about 500 feet high, and spread to about 40 acres of land. 


Purani HaveliJust southeast of Afzal Gunj Bridge near Dewandevdi in Hyderabad lies one of the many palaces of Hyderabad’s Nizam, the Purana Haveli Palace. Built more than 200 years ago, the Palace, while not as grand as the other palaces built by the Nizams across their dynasty, is still a very fine example of the melding of two culture’s architectural styles. Even now, it still stands as a wonderful edifice that is representative of India’s rich and diverse history. Purani Haveli is literally translated as “Old Quarters”. 


Hyderabad NumaishIn Urdu, “Numaish” means exhibition, and the Numaish in Hyderabad is precisely just that; it is an open-air exhibition to display all the ingenious products and goods that the city of Hyderabad produces. Held annually since 1938 during the ruling period of Hyderabad’s Nizams, the fair gets about 2.5 million people each year, with up to 2600 stalls set up for the perusal of the buying public. To say that it is a massive event is pretty much an understatement. 


Falaknuma PalaceAbout 5 kilometers or so from historic Charminar, another grand masterpiece of architecture can be found. It is called Falaknuma Palace, which literally means “Star of Heaven” in Urdu. 


Secunderabad AttractionsWhile much of the city developed under British rule, resulting in different cultural fusion, it still holds very good spots for those who want to immerse themselves in Indian culture. The atmosphere in this city is also much more serene than Hyderabad, making it a prime place for those who want to enjoy everything in relative peace and tranquility. 


Ravindra BharathiIn Hyderabad, the most popular cultural center is arguably the Ravindra Bharathi, named after the famous Indian poet and mystic Rabindranath Tagore, who was Asia’s first Nobel laureate in 1913. The center has an auditorium and theatre that is the site of cultural as well as popular performances, as well as a gallery and a large conference hall. The Ravindra Bharati has long been the venue of many historical and pop cultural events, having been built by the government of Andhra Pradesh in 1964. 


Shilpakala VedikaWhen Shilpakala Vedika was unveiled in 2002 amidst a lot of fanfare (including a glittering cultural show complete with classical and tribal dances and a lot of dignitaries), there were concerns that Hyderabad’s other, more enduring cultural center, the Ravindra Bharathi, would be put out of business and completely overshadowed. While Ravindra Bharathi is still up today (and still going strong), the fears shared by those people then were not totally unfounded: Shilpakala Vedika is touted as the best convention center in the country and, with its facilities and pedigree, it might as well be.


Necklace RoadA wonderful place to unwind and just plain relax in Hyderabad is the long strip of boulevard popularly known as Necklace Road. The name comes from the fact that the whole road, along with Hyderabad’s Tank Bund, resembles a beautiful necklace when seen from the sky. This long stretch of road connects NTR Gardens and Lumbini Park in Hyderabad to Sanjeevaiah Park in Secunderabad. This is how the whole thing is connected: the road from Sanjeevaiah Park connects to the Tank Bund Road which, in turn, is connected to the NTR Gardens, forming a circle. 

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