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Destination of the Month

Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh

I still remember the day when I as a 10 year old boy had accompanied my parents to a museum where I had seen a veiled lady carved in spotlessly white marble, truly majestic and mesmerizing. That sight is still embedded in the lanes of my childhood memory.

This was the sculpture of Rebecca made by Giovanni Maria Benzoni in the 19th century. A truly timeless classic well preserved in the Salar Jung Museum at Hyderabad.

Andhra Pradesh, known as the "Rice Granary of India" is the favourable tourist state in India, which has a coastline of 1000 km with eight of its 23 districts having direct access to the sea. Located in South India, Andhra Pradesh is bounded by Tamil Nadu in the south, Maharashtra in the North and North-West, Madhya Pradesh in the North-East, Karnataka in the West, and by the Bay of Bengal in the East. The medieval city of Hyderabad is its capital. The main languages that are spoken in Andhra are Telugu, English, Urdu and Hindi.

It uniquely combines history, beaches and mountains into a great travel destination. The state of Andhra Pradesh is recognized variously-for its legendary dynasties; for its most revered temple, Tirupati; for its beautiful language, Telugu; for its lacquer toys and beautiful weaves; rich literature and the vibrant Kuchipudi. The Places to see in Andhra Pradesh are Sri Venkateswara temple at Tirupati, Charminar, Salar Jung Museum, Golconda Fort in Hyderabad and Buddhist viharas at Nagarjunasagar. Andhra Pradesh had been an important seat of rich Buddhist heritage. Andhra Pradesh has also the largest IT Park and largest Film City in Asia.

Hyderabad, the capital city of Andhra Pradesh offers an enriching travel experience with a blend of architectural wonders and rich cultural heritage. Many dynasties ruled over Hyderabad and many forts, palaces and other monuments were constructed under their rule. However, the city flourished under the reign of Qutub Shah and Asaf Jahi dynasties. Hyderabad is known as the City of Pearls as it contains the largest market of pearl jewellery in India. Hyderabad is well connected by Air with the nearest airport being in Hyderabad. The climate is generally hot and humid, with summer temperatures varying between 20 degrees to 40 degrees Celsius, while winters witness a temperature between 13 degrees and 32 degrees Celsius.

Golconda Fort is one of the most magnificent forts of India and is located on a hill about 400 ft. above the surrounding plains. The fort was built during the reign of Kakatiya Kings of Warangal, but it got glory during the Qutub Shahi dynasty. The fort was famous for its diamond trade and the priceless 'Kohinoor' diamond is said to have been discovered here. One of the most interesting aspects of this fort is its system of acoustics. The sound of hands clapped at the entrance gate can be heard clearly at Bala Hissar, the highest point, a kilometre away.

Qutub Shahi Tomb is located in the close proximities of Golconda Fort. It represents one of the most authentic and majestic display of the architecture of Qutub Shahi dynasty. The grandeur of the tombs lies amidst the beautiful and picturesque landscape and gardens of Ibrahim Bagh. The tombs are dedicated to the seven Qutub Shahi kings who ruled Golconda for nearly 170 years.

Salar Jung Museum is amongst the largest museums in the country, it boasts of having the largest antique collection. The museum was founded in 1951 by Mir Yousuf Khan (Salar Jung III). The museum displays the personal collections Salar Jung III. The museum is famous as the "biggest private collection" of Mir Yousuf Khan.

Hyderabad is synonymous with Char Minar, which is an exceptional blend of the Indo-Islamic architecture and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Hyderabad. This square-shaped structure is 56 metres high and 30 metres wide. It was built during the Qutub Shahi dynasty. Four minarets stand on the four corners of Char Minar and each minaret has double balconies and have bulbous dome at the top. Mecca Masjid situated near Char Minar is the largest mosque in Hyderabad. Legends say that the construction was initiated by Mohammad QuliQutub Shah, while the construction was finished in 1694 by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. The mosque accommodates 10,000 people at a time.

One of the oldest markets of Hyderabad Laad bazaar is famous for Bangles. The market is located in the vicinity of Char Minar and offers colourful collection of bangles, semi-precious stones, pearls, sarees and jewelry. This market has been operational since the era of the Qutib Shahis and the Nizams. It is one of the Hyderabad's most persistent and ancient legacies. The Nizam's Museum showcases the gifts and mementos presented to the last Nizam on the occasion of the silver jubilee celebrations in 1936. A 1930 Rolls Royce, Packard and a Mark V Jaguar are among the vintage cars displayed here which belonged to the royal family.

Another major attraction here is the Chowmahalla Palace, one of the heritage buildings of Hyderabad. This building belonged to the Nizams of the state, and was used to host ceremonial functions including accessions, receptions of the British generals, etc., during their reign. Built over 200 years ago, Chowmahalla is renowned for its unique style and elegance. Not to forget the grandeur it carries forward as legacy.

Just about 25Kms from Hyderabad, is located Ramoji Film City which is the largest film studio complex in the world. It is said that you can walk in with a script and make a complete movie here. All pre and post production work can also be done here. There are many sets – Japanese gardens, Hollywood sign, London Street, hospital, airport, etc. It is a dream destination for entertainment and relaxation.

Hyderabad offers a variety of accommodation for its visitors to suit the budget of one and all.

What are we waiting for? Let's not spoil the vacation simply trying to decide on the destination…Come to Hyderabad and experience its timeless charm!!!