Kazan Cathedral, Saint Petersburg

Saturday, 24 September 2016


Google Maps: Charminar, Hyderabad, India
  • Hyderabad is a crowded city. Most important roads lead to Charminar and are perennially congested. Most of the good hotels are in Banjara Hills area.
  • Charminar, Chowmahalla Palace, Mecca Masjid and central market are all stone throw to each other. One can spend full day exploring these and trying hyderabadi delicacies around.
  • Paradise Hotel famous for the Hyderabadi Biryani is nearby. So is Karachi Bakery, famous for the fruit cookies.

Charminar is a charming relic of rich old Hyderabad. The imposing tower sits at the centre of city at a cross-road that is perennially crowded. We reached simultaneously at around 4 PM, one coming from periphery of the city, other from the airport. It was the most apt place to meet in Hyderabad. Quickly we submitted our heavy bags at a nearby cloak room as bags are not allowed inside Charminar. It made movement easy.

Charminar, Hyderabad

The structure is built on four levels, three of which are blocked for public. The stairs take you to the fourth level which is open, round and airy. Here the carved minars are closer and imposing. The market downwards looks like a beehive. In the evening, Mecca Masjid occupies a large part of setting landscape.

We came down and decided to explore the area further. Chowmahalla Palace is half mile away and we took the walk through the crowd. The palace is one of its kind. Located at the heart of Hyderabad, the palace expands to acres of land, all well planned for a King's stay. Divided into three sections, the first one is for audience with general public. Galleries on left and right end at a lawn that overlooks a palatial complex where the King sits.

The second section is where the King lives. Beyond is the third section that holds some of the most expensive cars that early twentieth century witnessed. There is a Buick and a Ghost Rolls Royce. It took us half hour to come back to Charminar and another half to come back to real world.

We were hungry and settled for street food - dosas, idlis and a hyderabadi speciality. It was getting dark and our plans for night included drinks at Hard Rock Hyderabad. Before that we had to search for a good hotel and book a room.