Places to visit in Hyderabad on weekends

Tripoto
25th Jan 2014

Laad Bazaar: Street Vendor

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Laad Bazaar: Street full of colours

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Laad Bazaar Street View

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Laad Bazaar: Colourful Choodi collection

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Hussain Sagar Lake night view

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Golconda Fort: Top of Golconda FOrt

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Golconda Fort: City View from Golconda fort

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Chowmahalla Palace: Palace full of Chandelier

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Chowmahalla Palace: An old Chair of Nizams

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Chowmahalla Palace: Interior view

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Chowmahalla Palace

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Charminar at night

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Charminar: Tall minarets gazing into the sky

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Mecca Masjid: Tombs at Mecca Masjid

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Mecca Masjid: Open areas

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Charminar: Street view

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Hakeem Baba dargah: Night view from Jubilee H

Photo of Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Hyderabad has its own culture and I have found that most people in Hyderabad are very humble and hospitable. As they say "light lo yaro" (if literally translated in English, it means 'chill dude'), one can observe that people are quite relaxed and there is absolutely no rush in Hyderbadis' life. Culture and city of Hyderabad are a reflection of Nizam's dynasty. I always wanted to explore the city, see old palaces, meet Hyderabadi's and learn about the Nizam culture. Fortunately I started my first job at Hyderabad city and it gave me the opportunity to explore the city, monuments and culture.

My cousin and I decided to explore Hyderabad old city and culture. We made a list of old places to visit in Hyderabad on weekend. Idea was to do a budgeted tour of all old monuments on my bike and capture them in my DSLR. In two days, i.e. on a weekend (From Jan 25 to January 26, 2014), we managed to visit places like Charminar, Laad Bazaar, Chowmahalla Palace (Nizam's Residence), Mecca Masjid, Hussain Sagar lake, Golconda Fort and Jubilee Hills. I have shared a small itinerary for two days and would recommend to start your tour early morning:

Day 1: Places near Charminar

Transport cost (Own Bike): Rs 100 (Petrol/Gas)

Chowmahallah Palace (Nizam's Residence) - Cost: Rs 30 (Entry ticket Rs 20 and parking ticket Rs 10) | Time: 10 am to 5 PM

Charminar - Cost: Rs 200 (Entry ticket Rs 5 and rest food) | Time: 10 am to 5 PM

Mecca Masjid Cost: Rs 0 (No entry fee) | Time: 10 am to 8 PM (not restricted, morning and evening)

Laad bazaar or Choodi Bazaar Cost: Rs 0 (No entry fee) | Time: (not restricted, evening)

Day 2: Places near Golconda Fort

Transport cost (Own Bike): Rs 100 (Petrol/Gas)

Golconda Fort - Cost: Rs 60 (Entry tickets Rs and Street food Rs 45) | Time: 10 am to 5 PM (There is a an evening light show also)

Qutub Shahi Tombs- Cost: Rs 10 (Entry tickets) | Time: 10 am to 5 PM

Hussain Sagar Lake - Cost: Rs 100 (Food Court) | Time: 24/7 (More close to near Charminar)

Jubilee Hills (Hakeem Baba dargah) - Cost: Rs 0 | Time: 24/7

We captured amazing pics in DSLR Camera and it felt so great to prove that it is possible to visit these places on weekend. Travel bug can take you to so many places and in fact I made many early weekend morning trips to Lotus Pond (Jubilee Hills), KBR national park (Jubilee Hills), Botanical Garden (Kondapur), Zoo, Falaknuma Palace, Ameenpur Lake, Butterfly and Dear park. You can also visit Salarjung museum and several other lakes. There are ample of places to visit in Hyderabad on weekend. All you need to do is get up and explore.

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We started our journey from Tolichowki (Hyderabad) to Charminar Road and parked our bike inside Chowmahalla parking lot. There is ticket counter to buy ticket, cloak room to keep your belongings and a cafeteria to have snacks. Chowmahalla Palace or Nizam's Residence was official residence of Nizam family. It has four palaces and is worth visiting. It is said that Nizams were considered to be the richest people on earth during their time. Once you visit the palace you will find that all the furnitures, cutleries, chandeliers, vintage cars like Rolls Royce, fountain, arms and weapons, Chariots, libraries, dresses and paintings are very well preserved. The main durbar has huge Chandeliers and other rooms have colourful chandeliers. It just felt like Nizams were fond of chandeliers and created a palace full of chandeliers. Two to three hour is good enough to explore the whole palace. There is a watch tower which will help you find this place from a distance.

Photo of Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

We left Chowmahallah and parked our bike in one of the lanes near Charminar. After buying tickets we climbed entwined staircases via one of the minarets to reach first floor of Charminar. Charminar has four minarets and we found that it is not just a monument but also a Masjid and has Persian architecture with nice verses of Quran engraved on the walls and edges. It is located at the center of old city and is considered global icon of Hyderabad. The walls have been ruined by cupid graffiti however you can see entire area including all four gates build around Charminar, Mecca Masjid and Laad Bazaar from the top. Somehow we managed to come downstairs, it as bit scary and dark inside minarets. There are lots of theories behind why and how Charminar was build centuries ago however it was worth climbing those stairs. Charminar is symmetrical and only one entrance is open for public visit. Charminar looks stunning during night and you can enjoy Hyderabadi biryani and irani chai in nearby restaurants.

Photo of Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Mecca masjid is a walking distance from Charminar. It is one of the oldest and largest mosques in India. Mosque has many verses of Quran engraved on walls in calligraphy. Architecture of mosque is finest example of Qutub shahi architecture and follows typical Islamic architecture. Mecca Masjid was created during Asaf Jah rulers. Along with the main prayer area there are tombs of Nizam and their family.

Photo of Mecca Masjid, Ghansi Bazaar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Mecca Masjid, Ghansi Bazaar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

In the evening we walked inside Laad bazaar which is located opposite to one of the gates of Charminar and adjacent to Mecca Masjid. Women visit Laad bazaar to essentially buy colourful bangles (choodi) made of laad, handmade jewelry, local wedding items and traditional Indian dresses like Sari and salwars. Laad Bazaar is quite colourful and well lit. Do not spend too much on shopping because items are quite cheap and may not be authentic but don't forget to buy souvenirs. It is a heaven for photographer like me.

Photo of Laad Bazaar Road, Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Laad Bazaar Road, Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Laad Bazaar Road, Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Laad Bazaar Road, Charminar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

We started day 2 from Tolichowki again and reached Golconda fort. There is a cloak room and restaurants like Cafe Coffee Day near main entrance. Fort was first build by Kakatiya centuries ago and was extend by Nizams. Golconda was famous for diamond mines and served as fort for many dynasties who ruled Golconda until Nizams were asked to surrender by Indian Govt. There are stairs which will take you to the top of the fort and give you full view of the old and new Hyderabad. It is typical fort with three layers of security and eight gates. Golconda fort is famous for magical acoustic system. It is big fort with almost everything like cellar, darbar, stable, mosque, temples, tombs, secret tunnel, cannon posts, chambers, etc. and it is impossible to explore every nook and corner of Golconda fort in a day. May be Wikipedia page can help you learn more about Golconda fort or hire a guide. We left the Golconda fort for Qutub Shahi tomb which is located nearby.

Photo of Golconda Fort, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
Photo of Golconda Fort, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

Qutub Shahi tombs are quite well maintained. Qutub Shahi tombs were built for seven Qutub Shahi Sultans and have distinct architecture of Persian style. There is a masjid and well maintained garden inside the compound. It is heaven for photographers who want to try their hands at architecture photography.

Photo of Qutub Shahi Tombs, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

In the evening we went to Hussain Sagar Lake which is located near necklace road and beautifully decorated with lights and fountain. Hussain Sagar is an artificial lake build by Hussain Shah and there is a canal which drains water into the lake. Since it was night, we want to capture the lights and colourful statute of Buddha located at the center of the lake. During the day ferries and jet boats are available for leisure and water sport inside Lumbini Park. There is a food court and couple of other good restaurants around Hussain Sagar lake like 1857 and Tansen by Ohri's. Try to book your tables in advance for restaurant or else you can eat at food court.

Photo of Hussain Sagar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir

To wind up our two days tour we found a nice place at Jubilee hills to capture city light. From Hakeem Baba dargah one can see entire city including Golconda fort. There is a Lotus pond and KBR national park located nearby which can be visited during specific morning and evening hours. Jubilee hill is a posh area in Hyderabad after Banjara hills.

Photo of Hakeem Baba Dargah, Film Nagar, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Aamir
12 Comment(s)
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thnks for this. i am shifting to hyderabad soon. much needed info for me. i have visite hyd before but found sm nice places frm ur blog
Sat 06 17 17, 02:54 · Reply · Report
Whats unique with Hakeem Baba dargah
Sun 05 28 17, 03:26 · Reply (1) · Report
The view from the edge of the hill. You can see the entire city, Golconda fort and other monuments.
Sun 05 28 17, 10:04 · Report
A great many places to go in Hyderabad in two days. Thanks for the info. Could you suggest any place where I can take a bike on hire for the purpose? I'm here on a visit so don't have my own transportation.
Sun 01 10 16, 19:43 · Reply · Report
You have done a marvelous job covering this rich and glorious city of Hyderabad. Next please do a write-up on some places near Hyderabad that one can visit for a weekend or a short holiday.
Sun 01 10 16, 12:58 · Reply · Report
Golconda fort is a must visit place near Hyderabad. I was very taken up with the way it is still well maintained. So much better than some of the forts I've been to in Delhi which are in a sorry state.
Sun 01 10 16, 11:55 · Reply · Report
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