Discovering the Land of Nawabs: Hyderabad
Today, I am taking you on a journey with me to the Land of Kebabs … oops … Land of Nawabs – Hyderabad. Come to think of it, Hyderabad is famous for kebabs and Nawabs alike. Having traveled most of India’s must-visit places, Hyderabad was the last on the list that I ticked off in November last year. I packed my bags and booked a flight to Hyderabad. After landing in this beautiful city, I availed a convenient Hyderabad airport cab service to my hotel.
The City of Hyderabad
Let’s try this as an exercise – imagine a crowded marketplace … barely any place to walk … tea stalls with no place to stand … colorful rickshaws with blaring music … imperial-style buildings in a semi-dilapidated condition. Do you have the picture in your mind? Well, that’s Hyderabad – not all of it though but the first impression I had when I reached there on November 20, 2019.
Hyderabad is a city steeped in culture and heritage. The city can be divided into two distinct parts – the Old City on Musi River’s south side, and the New City on the river’s northern banks. During my short stay there, I realized that it was impossible to travel more than 4-5 km in the Old City without coming across a place having some historical significance. Being new to the place, I decided to book a cab in Hyderabad with a driver to explore the city.
Built in 1591, the Charminar represents Hyderabad the way the Taj Mahal represents Agra. It epitomizes the city and has stucco decorations along with arrangements of balconies and balustrades. It is a great example of the fusion of the Mughal and Hindu styles of architecture.
Another landmark that defines Hyderabad, the Golconda Fort is an architectural marvel from the medieval Deccan period and has a three-tiered fortification protected by a moat and eight entrance gates.
If you are traveling with a woman who likes Indian jewelry, then you cannot skip a trip to the Laad bazaar near the Charminar. This market has an endless variety of lacquer bangles (laad bangles). From semi-precious jewelry to embroidery and zari work, you can find it all here. Just be prepared for a lot of activity and noise.
KBR National Park
For the nature aficionados, the KBR National Park offers more than 100 species of birds and 15 species of butterflies along with some fascinating flora. An amazing place to spend your day watching nature in action or clicking pictures.
Moula Ali Dargah
The Moula Ali Dargah is a place of pilgrimage for Muslims and has been accepted as a heritage site by the Heritage Conservation Committee. It was built in the memory of Hazrat Ali, the son-in-law of Prophet Muhammad. One needs to climb 400 stairs to reach the Dargah.
The New City has the usual attractions of urban life with cafés, shopping malls, and fine-dine restaurants, etc. However, in my opinion, exploring the City of Nawabs requires one to stay in the Old City and absorb its charms. If this is your first visit here, then I would recommend that you book a local cab with a driver who knows the history of the city well. It can make a huge difference in your experience. Safe Travels.