In & Around Hyderabad :

Holy Places >>

Ashtalakshmi Temple

Ashtalakshmi Temple is a popular Hindu temple of Goddesses Ashtalakshmi in Hyderabad, India. This magnificent temple dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi stands distinctly on the outskirts of the city. Amidst the varied Islamic architectural monuments in the area, this temple has a different style — a touch of south Indian architecture.

Among the Hindu pantheon, the Goddess of wealth, Lakshmi, finds a special place in the hearts of the people for she brings prosperity and happiness as well as salvation. But very few temples have Goddess Lakshmi in her eight splendorous forms.

Built under the auspices of the Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam, the temple was consecrated in April 1996. It is one of its kind in the state of Andhra Pradesh. This temple is located between Dilsukh Nagar and LB Nagar, in Vasavi Colony near Kothapet (NH 9).

The design and architecture of the Ashtalakshmi temple was borrowed from the one at Chennai (formerly called Madras). However, several modifications were made while the construction was initiated. The Ashtalakshmi temple is a fine example of a collective endeavor. People from many quarters came forward to donate liberally. It took five years of non-stop work and a total expenditure of Rs 10 million for the magnificent Ashtalakshmi temple to take its present form.

The well-known architect, Padmashri S.M. Ganapati Sthapathi, and M. Mathiyalagan Sthapathi conceived the structure and design. About 134 vigrahams (idols) of lesser-known gods adorn the mahagopuram.

Although built of sand and cement, the Ashtalakshmi temple reveals the remarkable dexterity of the artists. Installed inside are idols of Adilakshmi, Aishwaryalakshmi, Santanalakshmi, Dhanalakshmi, Dhanyalakshmi, Gajalakshmi, Vijayalakshmi and Varalakshmi. Depicting these eight postures, the idols are adorned with gold and kasula Peru necklace and other necklaces. If one is all praise for the richly ornamented idols inside the temple, one is equally agog to see the intricately carved designs on the temple gopuram.

The nightly illumination of this enchanting temple is spectacular. Viewed from a distance, it looks like it's made from marble. And on approaching the temple entrance, one is captivated by the tranquility of the surroundings and the all-pervading sweet fragrance of the incense.

Birla Mandir

The temple manifests a blend of South Indian Rajasthani and Utkala temple architectures. In its entirety, it is made of 2000 tons of pure Rajasthani white marble.

The granite of the presiding deity is about 11 ft (3.4 m) tall and a carved lotus forms an umbrella on the roof. The consorts of Lord Venkateswara, Padmavati and Andal are housed in separate shrines. There is a brass flagstaff in the temple premises which rises to a height of 42 ft (13 m).

The temple is built on a 280 feet (85 m) high hillock called the Naubath Pahad on a 13 acres (53,000 m2) plot. The construction took 10 years and was consecrated in 1976 by Swami Ranganathananda of Ramakrishna Mission. The temple does not have traditional bells, as Swamiji wished that the temple atmosphere should be conducive for meditation.This temple is one of the most important religious places in India.

Though the chief deity is Lord Venkateshwara, the temple has pan-Hindu character with deities of Shiva, Shakti, Ganesh, Hanuman, Brahma, Saraswati, Lakshmi and Saibaba. The selected teachings of holy men and Gurbani are engraved on temple walls.

Birla temples are open to all, as identified by Mahatma Gandhi and other Hindu leaders as one of the major social evil that was to be reformed in modern India as part of Freedom struggle.

Birla Mandir is well connected by APSRTC buses or an MMTS Train. Distance from Secunderabad railway station is about 7 km (4.3 mi). Distance from Hyderabad (Nampally) railway station is about 3 km (1.9 mi). Distance from Kacheguda Railway Station is about 5 km (3.1 mi). Distance from Begumpet airport is about 6 km (3.7 mi). Nearest MMTS station is Lakdi-ka-pul and Lakdi-ka-pul bus stop also.

Sanghi Temple

Sanghi Temple, located at Sanghi Nagar in Andhra Pradesh in India, is about 35 km from Hyderabad city.The sacred Raja Gopuram, which is very tall, can be seen from several kilometers away.

The temple complex is located on the top of Paramanand Giri hill, which attracts a number of devotees who seek the gods' blessings. The beauty of the slope around the temple is a popular view among its visitors. As you approach the Paramanand Giri, the gateway, or Maha Dwaram, welcomes the visitors. As you further proceed, the stone elephant is seen at the stairway. There are three Gopurams seen at the foot of the hillock which are so tall and seem as if touching the heavens. On the top of the temple complex, one can see the shrine of Lord Anjaneya, the son of Anjana devi and Wind God, who is believed to shower his blessings to his devotees.

The temple is constructed in South Indian style of temple architecture and houses all important Hindu God idols. It is a favorite getaway point for the Hyderabadis as well as a popular tourist spot. The idol of Venkateshwara inside the sanctum sanctorum is 9-½ ft tall.

There are small temples inside the complex dedicated to Padmavati, Shiva, Rama, Anjaneya, Ganesha, Navagrahas, Goddess Ashtalakshimi, Durga and Kartikeya. There is also a Pavitra Vanam, or holy garden, in the temple complex where special leaves and flowers are grown for performing poojas. The temple opens at 5.00 a.m. For one hour, Suprabhatam is recited, followed by Archana to the deities from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. General darshan for the devotees is allowed from 8.30 a.m. to 10.30 a.m. and again from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Poojas and Sevas are held between 6 p.m. and 8 pm. The temple remains closed between 12 p.m. and 4 p.m. and after 8 p.m. Weekly Abhishekam is performed to the deities between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. (Sri Ramalingeshwara (Mondays), Sri Hanuman (Tuesdays), Sri Venkateshwara, Ashtalakshmi, Parvathi, Padmavathi and Rama(Fridays).

Timings of Sanghi Temple 08.00 a.m. to 08.00 p.m.,break b/w 1pm to 4pm on all days except notified public holidays.
Other attractions of Sanghi Temple cultural Film shows on all weekends in the afternoon.


Chilkur Balaji Temple

Chilkur Balaji Temple popularly known as Visa Balaji Temple or Visa God is an ancient Hindu temple of Lord Balaji on the banks of Osman Sagar Lake near Hyderabad, India. It is 17 km from Mehedipatnam. It is one of the oldest temples in Hyderabad built during the time of Madanna and Akkanna, the uncles of Bhakta Ramadas.

The shrine is instrumental for the temple's popularity as Visa God.

It is also the only temple in India that does not accept any money, does not have a hundi, from the devotees, no green channel or privileges for VVIPs, and it fought and won the right to stay out of government control.

From the style, structure and appearance, it can be inferred that the temple was built half a millennium ago. Set in sylvan surroundings, Chilkur Balaji Temple attracts millions of pilgrims every year and is an ideal place for sequestered retreat and meditation. It enjoyed in the past, great days of pomp and glory.

The temple is one of the oldest in Hyderabad, having been built during the time of Akkanna and Madanna, the uncles of Bhakta Ramdas. According to tradition, a devotee who used to visit Tirupati every year could not do so on one occasion owing to serious ill health. Lord Venkateshwara appeared in his dream and said, "I am right here in the jungle nearby. You don't have to worry." The devotee at once moved to the place indicated by the Lord in the dream and saw a molehill there, which he dug up. Accidentally, the axe struck Lord Balaji's idol (covered by the molehill) below the chin and on the chest. Surprisingly blood started flowing profusely from the "wounds", flooding the ground and turning it scarlet. The devotee could not believe his eyes. He could not believe his ears when he heard a voice from the air saying, "Flood the molehill with cow's milk." When the devotee did so, a Swayambhu idol of Lord Balaji accompanied by Sridevi and Bhoodevi (a rare combination) was found, and this idol was installed with the due rites and a temple built for it.

Sri Balaji Venkateshwara, the Pratyaksha Daiva in Kaliyuga, is thus available at Chilkur to shower blessings on His devotees who for any reason are unable to go to Tirupati. Many devout worshippers flock to the temple to receive the blessings of the Lord and his consorts throughout the year particularly during Poolangi, Annakota and Brahmothsavams. With the earnest desire to revive the former glory and importance of the temple, the idol of Ammavaru was installed in 1963, the year after the Sino-Indian War. After the unilateral withdrawal of Chinese troops, Ammavaru was given the name of Rajya Lakshmi, signifying this welcome event. The unique feature of this idol is that lotus flowers are held in three hands and the fourth hand is in a position towards the lotus feet which signifies the doctrine of Saranagathi.

The temple has been visited by great Acharyas from time to time. A visit to the temple is a must for the Jeer of Sri Ahobila Mutt every time he visits the twin cities, and in the temple is installed the idol of the first Jeer. The Tilakayaths of Sri Vallabhacharya Sampradaya have been regularly visiting the shrine. Jagadguru Sri Sankaracharya of Sringeri Mutt and his disciple graced the efforts of the trustees in improving the temple.

During a visit the devotee goes through the usual rituals of prayer, including 11 circumambulations of the inner shrine, and makes a vow. Once the wish is fulfilled devotees then walk 108 times around the sanctum sanctorum. The majority of wishes by devotees are visa related, thus Chilkur Balaji is also referred to as 'Visa' Balaji.

The temple is located on the banks of Osmansagar Lake with serene environs with lush green trees and small rocks in a village called as Chilkur.The Balaji Temple is located at Chilkur in the Hyderabad district. It is 33 km away from Mehedipatnam. Approximately 75,000 to 1,00,000 devotees visit in a week. Generally temple gets heavy rush on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Bus service is available to Chilkur Balaji Temple from Mehdipatnam, Hyderabad with APSRTC (Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation) bus bearing service number 288D every 15 minutes, with 40-minute drive through Langer House, Artillery Centre, Maisamma Temple, Police Academy. A few other services are available from APSRTC Bus Service. Double lane highway from Mehdipatnam.

Mecca Masjid

Mecca Masjid also Makkah Masjid, is one of the oldest mosques in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India, And it is one of the largest Mosques in India. Makkah Masjid is a listed heritage building in the old city of Hyderabad, close to the historic landmarks of Chowmahalla Palace, Laad Bazaar, and Charminar.

Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, the fifth ruler of the Qutb Shahi dynasty, commissioned bricks to be made from the soil brought from Mecca, the holiest site of Islam, and used them in the construction of the central arch of the mosque, thus giving the mosque its name. It formed the centerpiece around which the city was planned by Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah.

Makkah Masjid was built during the reign of Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, the 6th Qutb Shahi Sultan of Golconda (now Hyderabad). The three arched facades have been carved from a single piece of granite, which took five years to quarry. More than 8,000 workers were employed to build the mosque. Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah personally laid the foundation stone. The construction was later completed by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb after conquering Hyderabad.

The main hall of the mosque is 75 feet high, 220 feet wide and 180 feet long, enough to accommodate 10,000 worshipers at a time. Fifteen arches support the roof of the main hall, five on each of the three sides. A wall rises on the fourth side to provide Mihrab.

At the peak of the minarets flanking the mosque is an arched gallery, and above that a smallish dome and a spire. Inscriptions from the Qur'an adorn many of the arches and doors. The main structure of the mosque is sandwiched between two massive octagonal columns made out of a single piece of granite. The cornices running around the entire mosque structure and the floral motifs and friezes over the arches remind the tourist of the great attention paid to detail in Qutub Shahi architecture. They have a close resemblance to the arches at Charminar and Golkonda Fort.

On the four sides of the roof on the main mosque, the ramparts are made of granite planks in the shape of inverted conches perched on pedestals. From the cornice of the mosque, its minarets are not as high as the minarets on the mazaar (Nizams tombs) haven from their cornice. The octagonal columns have arched balconies on level with the roof of the mosque with an awning for a canopy, above which the column continues upwards till it is crowned by a dome and spire.

The entrance courtyard of the mosque, a rectangular, arched and canopied building houses the marble graves of Asaf Jahi rulers. This structure came up during the rule of the Asaf Jah rulers. It contains the tombs of the Nizams and their family.
At both ends of this resting place for the Asaf Jahs and very much a part of it, are two rectangular blocks with four minarets each. These minarets have elegant and circular balconies with low ornamental walls and arches. Above them is an octagonal inverted platter from which the rest of the minaret soars till it is arrested by a dome and a spire.

Chote Hazrat Ki Dargah

One of the famous religious places of Muslims in Hyderabad is Chote Hazrat Ki Dargah Masjid which located inside the Devan Devadi in Hyderabad. Chote Hazrat Ki Dargah Masjid became sanctified pilgrimage center not only for Muslims within the twin cities but also for Muslims coming for other parts of the country. Your search for prominent Dargah in Hyderabad city ends at Chote Hazrat Ki Dargah Masjid.

Monuments >>


The Charminar, built in 1591 CE, is a monument and mosque located in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India. The landmark has become a global icon of Hyderabad, listed among the most recognized structures of India.The Charminar is on the east bank of Musi river.To the northeast lies the Laad Bazaar and in the west end lies the granite-made richly ornamented Makkah Masjid.

The English name is a transliteration and combination of the Urdu words Char and Minar, translating to "Four Towers"; the eponymous towers are ornate minarets attached and supported by four grand arches.

Early in the 1580's the 5th ruler of Golconda Sultanate, Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah planned to shift his capital 5 miles (8.0 km) away from Golkonda and commissioned a new capital city to be constructed by Raja Ram Jagirdar,on the south-west banks of the Musi River. Shortly after Qutb Shah had shifted his capital from Golkonda to what is now known as Hyderabad, the Charminar is the first structure to be constructed. Though the Charminar lacks a foundation inscription and date of its construction is specifically unknown, multiple myths had been recorded by the historical travellers, academic scholars and historians.

The Charminar was constructed by Qutb Shah, who had also laid its foundation, The monument was intended to serve as a Mosque and Madraasa. Mir Momin Astarabadi, the prime minister of Qutb Shah played a leading role to prepare the layout plan for the Charminar along with the new capital city (Hyderabad), the additional eminent architects from Persia were also invited to develop the city plan. The structure is of Indo-Islamic architecture style, incorporating Persian architectural elements in the structure.

The entire city of Hyderabad was designed around the Charminar, which was constructed on the old trade route that connects the markets of the Golconda with the port city of Masulipatnam. Constructed at the core of the old Hyderabad, standing on the intersection of the two main historical trade routes, towards the north is the four gateways constructed in the cardinal directions. The city was spread around the Charminar in four different quadrants and chambers, seggregated according to the established settelment.

A thriving market exists around the Charminar: Laad Baazar is known for jewellery, especially exquisite bangles, and the Pather Gatti is famous for pearls. In its heyday, the Charminar market had some 14,000 shops.

Golconda Fort

Golkonda also known as Golla konda (shepherd's hill) a ruined city of south India and capital of ancient Kingdom of Golkonda (c.1518–1687), is situated 11 km west of Hyderabad. It is also a mandal of Hyderabad District. The region is universally famous for the mines that have produced the world's most famous and coveted gems, including The Hope Diamond, Idol's Eye, The Koh-i-Noor and Darya-i-Noor.

The most important builder of Golkonda was Ibrahim Quli Qutub Shah Wali, the fourth Qutub king of the Qutub Shahi Dynasty. Ibrahim was following in the spirit of his ancestors, the Qutub Shahi kings, a great family of builders who had ruled the kingdom of Golkonda from 1512. Their first capital, the fortress citadel of Golkonda, was rebuilt for defense from invading Mughals from the north. They ruled over most of present day Andhra Pradesh before the British Raj. After transferring Northern Circars to British, they ruled the Telangana region and some parts of present day Karnataka and Maharashtra.

Golkonda's splendid monuments, now in ruins, and designed a perfect acoustical system by which a hand clap sounded at the fort's main gates, the grand portico, was heard at the top of the citadel, situated on a 300-foot (91 m)-high granite hill. This is one of the fascinating features of the fort.

Falaknuma Palace

Falaknuma Palace is one of the finest palaces in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India. It belonged to Paigah Hyderabad State, and it was later owned by the Nizams. It is on a 32-acre (13 ha) area in Falaknuma, 5 km from Charminar. It was built by Nawab Vikar-ul-Umra, the then-prime minister of Hyderabad and the uncle and brother-in-law of H.H. The Nizam VI, Nawab Mir Mahboob Ali Khan Bahadur. Falak-numa means "Like the Sky" or "Mirror of the Sky" in Urdu.

An English architect designed this palace. The foundation for the construction was laid by H.E. Sir Vicar Ul Umra Bahadur on March 3, 1884. He was the great grandson of Khuddus, a famous scientist who was a best friend of Sir Charles Darwin. It took nine years to complete the construction and furnish the palace. Sir Vicar moved into the Gol Bangla and Zanana Mahel of the Falaknuma Palace in December 1889 and closely monitored the finishing work at the Mardana portion. It is made completely with Italian marble and covers an area of 93,971 square meters.

The palace was built in the shape of a scorpion with two stings spread out as wings in the north. The middle part is occupied by the main building and the kitchen, Gol Bangla, Zenana Mehal, and harem quarters stretch to the south. The Nawab was an avid traveler, and his influences show in the architecture.

The Falaknuma palace is a rare blend of Italian and Tudor architecture. Its stained glass windows throw a spectrum of colour into the rooms.

One of the highlights of the palace is the state reception room, whose ceiling is decorated with frescoes and gilded reliefs. The ballroom contains a two-ton manually operated organ said to be the only one of its kind in the world.

The palace has as many as 220 lavishly decorated rooms and 22 spacious halls. It has some of the finest treasures collections of the Nizam. Falaknuma houses a large collection of rare treasures including paintings, statues, furniture, manuscripts and books.

Asman Garh

Asman Garh Palace is a palace located in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India. The name meaning, Asman for Sky, and Garh for home, since the palace was located so high on a hillock. It is located on the road from Malakpet and Dilsukhnagar.The palace presently hosts a museum displaying archaeological relics. The palace presently is converted into a school (St Joseph's Public School, Asman Garh Palace branch)

It was designed personally and built by the erstwhile Prime Minister of Hyderabad state Sir Asman Jah in 1885 on a hillock for leisure. He belonged to the Paigah family. He fulfilled his dream of building a home close to the sky. His real name was Mohammed Mazharuddin Khan, he was the grandson of the second Nizam, Sikander Jah.

Its based on Gothic architecture and is in the shape of a European medieval castle. The granite turrets and arched windows of Asman Garh palace stand out.

Purani Haveli

Just 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”.

Originally, the place was supposed to be the residence of Mir Momen, the Prime Minister of Mohammed Quli Qutub Shah, ruler of Hyderabad during the Qutub Shahi dynasty in the late 16th century. When the 18th century rolled in, the place was renovated by the second Nizam, Asaf Jah II, with the intention of giving it to his son and successor, Sikandar Jah, the third Nizam of Hyderabad. However, when the latter assumed the mantle, he decided to transfer residency to the Khilwat complex in Chowmahalla. The building became known as Purani Haveli, and was relegated to the sidelines. When Nawab Mir Mahboob Ali Khan Siddiqi, the sixth Nizam, made it his official residence in the 19th century, the palace regained most of its former glory.

The complex itself is U-shaped, with a central single storeyed building, the royal palace, constructed with the facade of 18th century European architecture. The courtyard, however, is distinctly Indian, forming a comfortable amalgamation of aesthetics between the two. The central palace is flanked by two parallel double storeyed oblong wings, nearly 1000 feet long; the western wing, in particular, has what is said to be the world’s longest wardrobe. It is built in two levels, with a hand-cranked wooden elevator in place. Both wings have extremely well-proportioned courtyards that are surrounded by many rooms and verandas with semicircular European arches. Certain rooms still have their tiled walls and mosaic flooring intact, while their multiple colors still recall the old glory of the palace.

Purani Haveli also houses the Nizam’s museum, which showcases the artifacts of the last Nizam of the state of Hyderabad. Included in the collection are souvenirs, gifts, and mementos given by the different dignitaries of the world to the last Nizam. There are also vintage cars on display, including a 1930 Rolls-Royce, a Packard, and a Jaguar Mark V.
The place is open to the general public every day except on Fridays, from 10:30 AM to 5 PM.

Legislative Assembly

Enclosed 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.

The building was raised by the people, in a way; the citizens of the Princely State of Hyderabad raised funds in order to build the edifice in order to mark the 40th birthday of the sixth Nizam of Hyderabad, Nizam Mis Mahboob Ali Khan in 1905. It took eight years to finish, and in 1913, it became the state’s Town Hall. The architects who were commissioned to design the whole building were specially selected, and they opted for an all white scheme, for that aesthetic, classical look. The architects also fused two styles in coming up with its design: Persian and Rajasthani. The over-all look is one of grandeur that is befitting of a building where power is made. In 1980, the New Assembly Building was constructed adjoining the Old Assembly, in order to accommodate the legislative offices of the ministers and political parties. The new building was made to have the same architecture as the original one and it so resembled the old building that it was difficult to distinguish between the two.

The whole structure is surrounded by lush green lawns, giving the whole place a beautiful panoramic view. A 22-foot tall statue of Mahatma Gandhi in a meditating position stands at the entrance of the Assembly, atop a six-foot pedestal, where the words “My Life is My Message” are etched. The statue was erected to remind legislators to follow Mahatma Gandhi’s ideals.

Paigah Tombs

One 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”.

The Paigah nobility was founded by Abdul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung while in service to the second Nizam, Salabat Jang. For his dedication and efforts, the Nizam conferred to him the hereditary titles of Shams-ul-Doula, Sahams-ul-Mulk, and Shams-ul-Umara, the latter meaning “the sun among the nobles or masses” and the Paigahs were tasked to take care of the defence and security of the state. The Paigah nobles were very close to the Nizams and the bond was even more strengthened when Abdul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung’s son Fakhruddin Khan was married to the daughter of the second Nizam of Hyderabad in 1797. Since then, Fakhruddin Khan’s descendants married daughters of other Nizams. By protocol, the Paigahs were considered next only to the Nizams.

The Paigahs, great patrons of the arts and commanding the respect of the other nobles and the people, extended their unparalleled grace and elegance even to their tombs. The Paigah Tombs are among the wonders of Hyderabad and their marvelous artistry and are shown in their inlaid mosaic tilework.

Located at the Pisal Banda suburns in Hyderabad, the Paigah Tombs are delicately carved and enclosed in pierced marble facades. They are regarded as the finest examples of Indo-Islamic architecture, melding both features of the Asaf jah and Rajputani style of architecture. A majestic, double-storeyed gateway structure greets the visitor at the beginning.

The mausoleums themselves feature differing designs but all have exemplary craftsmaship, utilizing elaborate canopies and marble fences done in trellis-work that are made up of geometric and floral designs. Arches fringed by smaller semi-circular arches–a feature unique to India–are also employed. Each of the Pagiah noble’s tomb feature something unique different and part of the wonder is discovering each of the difference. All of these are housed by walls that are intricately designed by a wealth of lattice work and exotic designs. It is indeed a wonder it took a long time before these beautiful and awe-inspiring tombs were discovered.

Raymond Tomb

Back 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.

Raymond eventually became a general in the Nizam’s army, where he became popularly known as Monsieur Raymond. He also became a close friend to Nizam Ali Khan, the second Asaf Jahi, and won the trust of the local people. George Bruce Malleson said of him: “No European of mark who followed him in India ever succeeded in gaining, to such an extent, the love, the esteem, and the admiration of the natives of the country.”

When Raymond died in 1798, a tomb made of black granite was erected in Saroornagar, about 10 kilometers away from Hyderabad. The place is on top of a hillock in Mussa Ram Bagh, Malakpet. It is about 60 meters long, 30 meters wide, and 10 meters high. The initials “JR” are carved into it. The tomb has long been a symbol of great respect from the people and the dynasty and until now, people from all over the city still pay their respects for the great Frenchman on his death anniversary by lighting incense sticks near the tomb. Another attraction that can also be found near the tomb is the French Garden, located less than a kilometer away. It is the place where Raymond and his men were stationed. Now, it is a beautifully laid out lawn with green grass and flowers. There are also remnants of the military barracks stationed there during Raymond’s time.

In October 2001, the monument collapsed due to heavy rain, and also, lack of maintenance. The state government had it renovated, however, and given a facelift, as well as a brand new pavilion. On April 14, 2003, it was again showcased to senior officials of the tourism and archaeology departments. The renovation cost an estimated Rs 500,000, a small price to pay for the continued existence of one of Hyderabad’s enduring attractions.

Qutub Shahi Tombs

Located 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. The style of the tombs are varied, displaying Hindu, Persian, and Pathan forms–Indo-Persian architectures that are influenced by Deccani structural ideas. As a result, a distinct Qutub Shari school of architecture marked by liberal use of minarets, arches, domes, and columns was born.

The tombs differ in size but all are comparable to each other in architectural grandeur and beauty. Ironically, one of the most modest of these tombs belong to the Qutub Shahi dynasty founder, Sultan Quli Qutub-ul-Mulk. He built his tomb himself and it is just marked by simplicity and design symmetry, standing on a platform 30 meters on each side. From the plinth, the walls and the dome measure 12 meters while the ramparts have four Bahmani-style bouquets on each side of the tomb. Inside, the shape is octagonal with each side having a width of as much as 10 meters. Quli Qutub-ul-Mulk’s son’s tomb, Sultan Jamsheed Quli Qutub Shah, is also quite modest although extremely imposing, as it is standing on a high quadrangular platform. Among all the royal tombs, it is the only one that does not use black basalt in its construction.

Easily the most impressive, though, is the tomb of Hyderabad’s founder, Muhammed Quli Qutub Shah. It rises to a height of 42.5 meters, topped by a large dome. 28 open arches are located on each side. The tomb was constructed on a two-tiered terrace designed to look like a captivating gallery, complete with false openings and two central pillars. Minarets and rich ornamental parapets complete the Islamic architecture.

There are also tombs that belong to non-ruling members of the royal families. For example, there is the tomb of the sister of Muhammed Qutub Shah, Fatima Sultan. The tomb of the sufi saint Husain Wali, the man who built Husain Sagar which bridges Hyderabad and Secunderabad is also found there. While not as impressive as the tombs of the seven main rulers, they are still awe-inspiring in their own right.

Despite continued assault by man and the elements across the centuries, the tombs still maintain their original glory, a testament to the craftsmanship and engineering expertise of the Qutub Shari artisans and builders.

Amusement Parks >>

Treasure Island

For anyone who wants to get away from the stress of everyday living, then Treasure Island is a top choice for a great getaway. The park is laid out over 60 acres of great landscape and has many rides and activities that will keep the family busy and happy the whole day through. Horse riding, go-karts, billiards, and dancing are all in the fun menu for anyone to enjoy.

Speaking of dancing, Treasure Island has three main dance floors to strut anyone’s dancing skills. Dancers and party goers can lounge in Ecstasy, a lounge-cum-disc, which has recently been renovated in order to add a bigger bar. Another popular place is Karma, where a popular DJ can sometimes guest play for anyone’s party whims. Outside parties, however, are the cream of the crop, complete with a massive stage and dance floor, as well as a giant TV that shows the dancing area to the people sitting by the sides.

At its core, however, Treasure Island is known more as a family hangout joint and in that aspect it delivers fun and entertainment for everyone, regardless of age.


Jal Vihar

Jalavihar Park, located right in the middle of the road. It is a family-oriented park, equipped with a swimming pool, water slides, and other amusement park-type games. It also has a restaurant where anyone who’s tired from all the day’s activities can rest and recharge.

Ocean Park

Ocean Park is open seven days a week, from 11 in the morning to 8 in the evening. It is one of the first theme parks built in either Hyderabad or Secunderabad and it is also set up to international standards, both in safety and in pure variety of rides and fun; it has been tested by the most respected experts of the field. By this alone, Ocean Park should be heads and shoulders above other amusement parks in the region.

Ocean Park, as the name suggests, is a veritable mini-ocean built through the miracles of modern technology and state-of-the-art engineering. It has 20 acres of great greenery and crystal blue waters that make visitors feel like they’re in the high seas, without the actual danger of being in one.
The park has two main sections: the water section and the amusement section where one can get into the regular amusement park rides and games. Among the most popular rides are trains and ships that make full and half circles in the air, giant tea cups that circulate high above, and rides that plunge the rider at a height of 60 feet in water. The most popular zone in the whole park is the wave pool, where artificial waves are created using the latest in technology.
There are distinct sections for kids and adults. Kids can enjoy wading pools and fountains while adults can take part in decidedly mature activities like jet skiing. There is also a guesthouse where food and lodging services are offered. To insure that the water is disease-free and totally healthy, it is regularly passed through a filtration plant. The popular rides include Floating Bridge, Mushroom Umbrella, and Duck Jets.

Ramoji Film City

If 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.

The facility’s creation was spearheaded in 1996 by film producer Ramoji Rao, the media mogul and head of the Ramoji Group. It was made at an expense of hundreds of crores of rupees (in India, a crore is equivalent to 100 lakh, or 10,000,000), evident by the sheer magnitude of all the equipment, manpower, and resources for filmmaking available in it. Everything that goes into making a film, whether it be an art film or a summer blockbuster, is available at the mere mention: raw films, cameras, processing labs, editing consoles, and even traveling arrangements and past-times. Such is its resources that, at any given, twenty international films and forty Indian films can be made simultaneously in it.
As a tourist attraction, Ramoji Film City takes in revenues amounting billions of rupees. Sites tourists can visit include a Japanese garden, an accurate reproduction of an airport terminal, artifical waterfalls, chruches, mosques and temples, palace interiors, and a winding highway, among others. Tourists can also go to the Hawa Mahal, which is based along the lines of the Golconda Fort, on top of a hilltop. From there, visitors can see a bird’s eye view of the whole studio.

Film City coaches can also take visitors on a tour of the whole facility; each tour will give the tourists a chance to get in close with the locales, among which are sets of various blockbuster films and gardens where famous Indian song sequences were choreographed. There is also a prop shop, Parade, where the costumes worn by actors as shown in various films can be ordered, as well as a nursery called Shangrila, where the visitors can take exotic plants back with them. Various restaurants are also available for those who may want to satiate their hungry stomachs.

Ramoji Film City is located 35 kilometers away from Hyderabad, towards Vijayawada, on National Highway 9. Local transport can be used to get to the facility.

Museum >>

National History Museum

When one thinks of a museum in Hyderabad, the ones that immediately spring to mind are those that highlight the city’s rich past, such as the Salar Jung Museum or the AP State Museum. Both are very impressive and has received a lot of press and attention mainly because they are important and wonderful windows to Hyderabad’s intricate and interesting past. However, there is another side of Hyderabad that visitors — not just tourists — should see, and this is the living, primal Hyderabad. Hyderabad is not just the sum of its people’s history and culture, it is also a city that is made alive by the creatures and animals that have made India and, by association, Hyderabad their world. That is why it is important that everyone who visits Hyderabad as well as the Hyderabadis themselves take the time to visit museums that showcase such creatures. Fortunately, there is one that is worth checking out.

The National History Museum in Hyderabad may not be as big or as diverse as the National Museum of Natural History in New Delhi, but for those who just want to walk among the animals in history in a short time will more than appreciate it. Located inside one of the biggest zoos in Asia, the Nehru Zoological park, the National History Museum offers insights into the lives of animals both extinct and still living. It does this by displaying stuffed dummies that are so lifelike, they might as well be there in all their living glory. There are also artifacts on display that are related to these animals, so people — especially children — will have a more thorough understanding of these great and exotic creatures.

What’s even better about the National History Museum is that it’s within the confines of arguably India’s best zoo, which makes the experience even more striking and personal. One moment the visitor sees a stuffed extinct variety of a tiger and then, moments later, see its real, breathing cousin. The experience really drives the point across, which is that the animals on display are creatures that once breathed and walked the continent. Children will particularly the museum, especially since it focuses on exotic animals.

Birla Planetarium

Nestled 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.

The Birla Planetarium offers students the chance to study and learn about the cosmos via daily sky shows that are offered both in English and Tegulu. The mysteries of the Universe, the comets, eclipses, the recent clash of the Titans, and even Unidentified Flying Objects or UFOs are all presented in a totally immersing and breathtaking manner courtesy of the newest advancements of display technology. In ace of the shows, the dome and ceiling are transformed into the great expanse of the galaxy, with stars and other heavenly bodies looking down at the visitors. The feeling of excitement and wonder is even more compounded by convincing background music and sound effects, all delivered in wonderful, fully digital glory.

Aside from the Planetarium itself, there are other interesting places to check as well. The Science Museum was the second phase of the Center and was formally opened in 1990. It is Hyderabad’s only museum dedicated solely to science. The whole facility includes a Participatory Science Museum and an Archaeology and Fine Arts section. It essentially showcases the advancements of science India has made so far.

The Dinosaurium, on the other hand, was the third phase of the Center and its centerpiece is the rare and magnificent fossil of the 160 million-year-old Kotasaurus Yamanpalliensis, which was excavated in the Adilabad district of Andhra Pradesh. It is considered to be one of the finest fossil specimens in the world. The Dinosaurium is the best place in India for a budding paleontologist or student to learn about the lives of these wonderful and awesome creatures of the past.
The Birla Planetarium holds shows every day except the last Thursday of each month. There are different time slots for the different languages. Food is not allowed is not allowed inside the planetarium but those who are hungry can check out the wide range of offerings in the rooftop restaurant of the building.

The Nizam's Museum

Almost every tourist who visits Hyderabad makes it a point to visit the Salar Jung museum, or the Andhra Pradesh State Museum. However, not many go to another less known, but definitely not the least, museum in Hyderabad: the Nizam’s Museum. The reason for this is simple; since the tourism development corporation of Andhra Pradesh has not included this museum until recently in their itinerary for conducted tours, most tourists are not even aware of its existence. It is a shame, too, as the Nizam’s Museum offers a glimpse of the treasures and life of the last Nizam of Hyderabad.

Considered by many to be the richest man in the world during his time, Osman Ali Khan Bahadur, Asaf Jah VII, was the last Nizam of the Princely State of Hyderabad until it was invaded and annexed by India in 1948. As Nizam, his fortune was reportedly US$2 billion in the early 1940s. Until his death in 1967, he was widely believed to still hold that title, although his fortunes fell to US$1 billion by then. Adjusting for inflation today, he ranks fifth in the list of richest people in the history of the world, with a fortune that, at its height, amounted to US$225 billion in today’s dollars.

During his reign, he acquired many artifacts, mainly souvenirs, gifts, and mementos from the different dignitaries around the world, specifically during the silver jubilee celebration of his reign in 1936. These artifacts are now kept in the Nizam’s Museum in Purani Haveli, one of the palaces the Nizams have during their reign.

Among the many historical memoirs that the newly-renovated museum has are silver models of all the landmark buildings found in Hyderabad, a golden wooden throne used by the Nizam during the last silver jubilee celebration, glass inlay painting of Nizam Osman Ali Khan, and a wooden writing box studded with diamonds, mother-of-pearls as well as gold-studded daggers, caskets, and silver perfume containers. The latter were presented by the Raja of Palvancha. Automobile enthusiasts will also have a field day admiring the vintage cars that the last Nizam had for display. These include a 1930 Rolls-Royce, a Jaguar Mark V, and a Packard.

The museum was opened to the general public on February 19, 2000. Now, it is open daily (except on Fridays) from 10 AM to 5 PM, with an entrance fee of Rs. 65 for adults and Rs. 15 for children.

State Archaeology Museum

AP State Archeology Museum or Hyderabad Museum is a museum located in Hyderabad, India. Archeologist Henry Cousens first explored the site in the beginning of the 19th century, and around 1940 the mound was excavated under the supervision of Nizam of Hyderabad. The excavated items were place in a museum built on the ancient site. In 1952, the museum's contents were moved to the current build, under the administrative control of Archaeological Survey of India.

In 1930, the State Museum was installed inside a palace constructed in 1864, within the Public Gardens, Nampally. The Nizam had built the palace for one of his daughters, and it was called the "Doll's House". However, due to a superstition, the daughter did not occupy the palace. The AP State Archeology Museum is the only museum in the country with reproductions of the Ajanta paintings. Its manuscript section includes a copy of the Quran bearing the seal of Emperor Shah Jahan.

This museum's main attraction is its Egyptian mummy, which was brought to Hyderabad by the son-in-law of VI Nizam Mahbub Ali Khan, and donated it to the last Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan. He reportedly brought it for a paltry sum of 1000 pounds.

There is a huge gallery on Buddha dating back to last century. The museum has wide variety of archaeological artifacts from the Nizam, Kakatiya dynasty.

Purani Haveli

Just 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”.

Originally, the place was supposed to be the residence of Mir Momen, the Prime Minister of Mohammed Quli Qutub Shah, ruler of Hyderabad during the Qutub Shahi dynasty in the late 16th century. When the 18th century rolled in, the place was renovated by the second Nizam, Asaf Jah II, with the intention of giving it to his son and successor, Sikandar Jah, the third Nizam of Hyderabad. However, when the latter assumed the mantle, he decided to transfer residency to the Khilwat complex in Chowmahalla. The building became known as Purani Haveli, and was relegated to the sidelines. When Nawab Mir Mahboob Ali Khan Siddiqi, the sixth Nizam, made it his official residence in the 19th century, the palace regained most of its former glory.

The complex itself is U-shaped, with a central single storeyed building, the royal palace, constructed with the facade of 18th century European architecture. The courtyard, however, is distinctly Indian, forming a comfortable amalgamation of aesthetics between the two. The central palace is flanked by two parallel double storeyed oblong wings, nearly 1000 feet long; the western wing, in particular, has what is said to be the world’s longest wardrobe. It is built in two levels, with a hand-cranked wooden elevator in place. Both wings have extremely well-proportioned courtyards that are surrounded by many rooms and verandas with semicircular European arches. Certain rooms still have their tiled walls and mosaic flooring intact, while their multiple colors still recall the old glory of the palace.

Purani Haveli also houses the Nizam’s museum, which showcases the artifacts of the last Nizam of the state of Hyderabad. Included in the collection are souvenirs, gifts, and mementos given by the different dignitaries of the world to the last Nizam. There are also vintage cars on display, including a 1930 Rolls-Royce, a Packard, and a Jaguar Mark V.
The place is open to the general public every day except on Fridays, from 10:30 AM to 5 PM.

Salar Jung Museum

Touted as having the largest one-man antique collection in the world, the Salar Jung Museum, located in the southern bank of the Musi river, is widely known in India for its immense collection of antiques from different civilizations, some of which date back to the first century. With over 43,000 objects of art, 47,000 printed books, and 9,000 manuscripts, the museum is a veritable paradise to scholars and artifact connoisseurs. The museum is a testament to what one man can do in pursuit of cultural beauty and elegance.

The museum’s collection was the fruit of Nawab Mir Yousuf Ali Khan’s passion for historical antiques and the arts. More popularly known as Salar Jung III, Mir Yousuf Ali Khan was the Prime Minister of the seventh Nizam of Hyderabad in 1912. Two and a half years later, he resigned from the post and focused all his attention to collecting arts and antiques from around the world. Originally, the antiques and artworks were housed in his ancestral palace, Diwan Deodi, and exhibited there as a private museum. It was finally opened to the public on December 16, 1951 and, in 1968, the collection was finally transferred to its present location today. In 1961, the government passed the Salar Jung Museum Act where the museum was declared as an “institution of National Importance”.

The wonderful collection of the Salar Jung Museum covers the art heritage of many places around the world, including India, Middle East, Asia, and Europe. Persian carpets coexist with Japanese lacquerware and Chinese porcelain, showing just how diverse Salar Jung III’s collection is. India’s heritage also takes center stage, with Aurangzeb’s sword, daggers belonging to emperors Jehangir and Shah Jahan, and the turbans of Tippu Sultan on display. There is also a bewildering array of clock collections that greet the visitors in the aptly called clock room. There, one can virtually trace the development of the watch, from the ancient sundials to the modern 20th century timepieces.

Other collections of interest include the Jade gallery where items that espouse the elegance of jade are located. Since there is no jade found naturally in India, it is believed to be introduced during the Mughal rule. The designs and handiwork, though, are decidedly Indian. There is also a gallery devoted entirely to the family of the Salar Jungs, including a children’s section, a library, and a section devoted to rare and ancient manuscripts of Persian and Arabic origins.
Visitors can view all these priceless works of art history everyday, except Fridays. The museum is open from 10 AM to 5 PM.

Gardens >>

NTR Garden

NTR Gardens is a small, but popular, public, urban park of 55 acres (0.22 km2; 0.086 sq mi) adjacent to Hussain Sagar lake in Hyderabad, India. Constructed in several phases since 1999, the area that is predominantly a park is geographically located in the centre of the city, and is close to other tourist attractions such as Birla Mandir, Necklace Road and Lumbini Park. It is presently being maintained by the Buddha Purnima Project Authority that functions under the directives of the Government of Andhra Pradesh.


Public Garden

Public Gardens also known as Bagh-e-Aam is a historic park located in the heart of the city of Hyderabad, India. It was built during the period of the Nizams.

A visit to the Andhra Pradesh State Archaeological Museum is a delight for art lovers. Located in the picturesque Public Gardens, the museum boasts of one of the richest repositories of antiques and art objects in the country. Built in 1920 by the Nizam VII, the museum building itself is a fine example of Indo-Saracenic architecture. The museum contains a Buddhist gallery, Brahmanical & Jain gallery, Bronze gallery, Arms & Armour gallery, Numismatics gallery, Ajanta gallery and more. Adjacent to the State Museum is the Contemporary Art Museum. Public Gardens: Hyderabad has several beautiful gardens, one of the most popular being the Public Gardens, which also encloses the State Legislature, State Archaeological Museum, Jubilee Hall, Jawahar Bal Bhavan and Telugu Lalita Kala Thoranam, an open-air theatre.

Botanical Garden

Avid 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.

The Hyderabad Botanical Garden is situated along the Gachipoli-Miyapor highway, some 3 kilometers from Madhapur, and some 16 kilometers away from the Hyderabad Railway station. The garden is divided in 19 sectors, or ‘vanams’. There are sections for medicinal plants, fruits trees, ornamental plants, timber trees, aquatic plants, and so on. Aside from being an eco-tourism project by the government, it is also utilized as a storehouse for plants that are used for scientific and research purposes. It is also aimed to generate public awareness regarding plant conservation.

There are over 600 species of plants in the Garden and the entire place is dotted thick with them, except for the paced areas where visitors walk. The whole place was also designed to have large bodies of water, rolling meadows, and exquisite rock formations; everything is similar to a dry forest with rock formations, much like the Deccan plateau. The place also attracts birds and insects, enhancing the already heavy organic feel. For those who are hesitant at going at it alone, the garden management also regularly organizes nature camps, which include a guided tour, some nature walking, bird viewing, and other interactive sessions.

The place has modern facilities such as parking, cafeteria, drinking fountains and toilets. Entrance fee is Rs 10 for adults, while half that for children, although one can get a premium Rs 1000 that already includes picnic spots. Those who want to buy ornamental plants can get them for Rs 10 and upwards.

Kidwai Garden

An aesthetically designed garden offering retreat from the daily vigors of life, Kidwai Garden is a tastefully laid garden located at Rajendra Nagar on the outskirts of Hyderabad. Well visited by the people of all age groups, this pleasant -of aromatic flowers and blooming trees. One of the most delightful picnic spots in the city of Hyderabad, the Kidwai Garden remains flooded with picnickers, couples and families on weekends and national holidays. Open daily from 6 AM to 7:30 PM, the entry into this park is free of cost.

Getaways >>


Vijayawada is the commercial city of Andhra Pradesh and the third largest after Hyderabad and Visakhapatnam, with an area of 261.88 km. The city has a population of 1,021,860 (2011 Census), while the population of the metropolitan area is 1,491,202. The name Vijayawada, meaning "Land of Victory", is derived from the presiding deity, Kanaka Durga, also called Vijaya.It is also believed that rulers of orissa after conquering the land named it as "vijay bahuda",depicting "return after victory" .The city is also popularly known by its historic name Bezawada, which is used by the Indian Railways in assigning its railway station code "BZA".

The city has originated on the northern bank of the river Krishna. It was ruled by different dynasties from time to time, including the Gajapathis of Orissa, Eastern Chalukyas and the great ruler Krishna Deva Raya. By the time of construction of anicut over the river Krishna in 1885 AD, it took shape as small settlement on the eastern side of the Indrakiladri hills. In late 19th century the Gajapathis of orissa were settled in a small village named vurimi (krishna dist).

Today, the city is home to many of the most well-recognized educational institutions in Andhra Pradesh and mother of the corporate education. It is well connected to other regions by road, air and rail, and has the second biggest railway junction in India. As the commercial capital of Andhra Pradesh, Vijayawada is politically active, sociologically dominant, agriculturally rich, and is an industrial transportation hub. Vijayawada has been recognised as a Global City of the Future by McKinsey Quarterly. It is also India's one of the most promising cities for the future, and 159th fastest developing city in the world.


Bhadrachalam , is a Pilgrimage town of importance and a Municipality in Khammam district, in the state of Andhra Pradesh, India. It is located 312 kilometres (194 mi) east of state capital, Hyderabad. It is situated on the banks of the river Godavari, is an important site of pilgrimage for Hindus.The town is famous for it's temple where the presiding deity is Lord Rama.

Bhadrachalam is considered as a sacred place and the second famous Lord Rama Kshetra after Ayodhya in India Sri Lakshmana Sametha Seeta Ramachandra Swamy, Bhadrachalam.It is the best pilgrim centre in Andhra Pradesh after Tirupati. The speciality of this temple is the main Deity faces westside towards river Godavari. The temple at Bhadrachalam is located on a small hillock. The main Deity (moolaviraat) of Lord Rama has distinctive features here. He is in the Padmasana pose with four hands, holding the bow and arrow in the front two hands, and Conch(Shankam) and Wheel(Chakram) in the rear hands. The Sankha is held in the right hand and the Chakra in the left. To the left of Sri Rama is Sita and Lakshmana is on her left, he is also known as "Vaikuntha Rama".There are many site seeing places in and around Bhadrachalam.


Srisailam is a holy town and mandal, situated in Nallamala Hills of Kurnool district, Andhra Pradesh, India. It is on the banks of River Krishna, about 212 km south of Hyderabad.
Bhramaramba Mallikarjunaswamy Temple dedicated to Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy (a form of Shiva) and Devi Bhramaramba (a form of Parvathi) is located here and it is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. Srisailam Dam, located about 212 km from Hyderabad and 132 km from Nandyal, is a multipurpose dam built across River Krishna and caters to the irrigation and power needs of the state.

The origins of this temple have been lost in antiquity. The Skanda Purana has a chapter called Srisaila Kandam dedicated to it, which points to the ancient origin. This is confirmed by the fact that saints of the past millennia have sung its praises. It is said that Adi Sankara visited this temple and at that time he composed his Sivananda Lahiri.

It is one of the 274 shiva temples[Paadal petra sthalam], sung in Thevaram by Thirugnangasampandar, Thriunavukkarasar and Sundarar. It is addressed as 'Thiruparupatham' in Thevaram hymns.

Parkhal Wildlife Sanctuary

Pakhal Lake, situated amidst undulating forest land hills and dales is a popular retreat for the tourists. The lake, constructed around 1213 A.D. by Kakatiyan Ruler, Ganapathidev and spread over an area of 30 km., provides a beautiful site. Set around the shores of this lake is the Pakhal Wild Life Sanctuary with an area of 839 km2. It is a dense forest shelter for a variety of fauna.

If, one is lucky, one can spot a tiger or a leopard or a bear and one can find a herd of deer roaming about freely in the wild. The sanctuary is also harbouring Mammals like panthers, hyenas, wolves, wild dogs, jackals, sloth bear, nilgal, porcupine, langoor, Reptiles like python, cobra, common krait, monitor lizard and Crocodiles.

Pakhal is situaled about 50 km east of Warangal and it is well connected by road passing through the east while taluk headquarters of Narsampet which about 12 km away.


Alampur is a temple-town situated in Mahbubnagar district, in the state of Andhra Pradesh, India. It is located at about 90 KM from Mahabubnagar, 27 km From Kurnool and 200 km from Hyderabad. Alampur is the meeting point of the sacred rivers Tungabhadra and Krishna and is referred to as Dakshina Kashi(also known as Navabrahmeshwara Theertha) and the Western Gateway of Srisailam, the famous Shaivite (Shaivism) pilgrim centre. The principal deities at Alampur are Brahmeshwara and Jogulamba. It is surrounded by the Nallamala hills. Alampur is situated on the left bank of the Tungabhadra river. Alampur is also the hometown of Lakshmi Kantamma, a former member of parliament.

Alampur was under the rule of Shatavahana Ishvakus of Nagarjunakonda, Badami Chalukyas, Rashtrakutas, Kalyani Chalukyas, Kakatiyas, Vijayanagara Empire and Qutb Shahis of Golconda. Alampur was previously Known as Halampuram, Hamalapuram And Alampuram. Name of this place as Hatampura, mentioned in the inscription dated AD 1101 belongs to Western Chalukya Tribhuvanamalla Vikramaditya VI. The Alampur Navabhrama Temples are historically important and reflect remarkable architectural skills.

Nagarjuna Konda

Nagarjunakonda is a historical Buddhist town, now an island located near Nagarjuna Sagar in Nalgonda district, in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. It is 150 km south east of the capital, Hyderabad. It was formed when a hill was submerged in the waters of the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam, constructed in the 1960s. It is one of India's richest Buddhist sites, known in the ancient times as Sri Parvata. It now lies almost entirely under the Nagarjunasagar Dam. It is named after Nagarjuna, a southern Indian master of Mahayana Buddhism who lived in the 2nd century AD, who is believed to have been responsible for the Buddhist activity in the area. The site was once the location of many Buddhist universities and monasteries, attracting students from as far as China, Gandhara, Bengal and Sri Lanka. The Buddhist archaeological sites there were submerged, and had to later be dug up and transferred to higher land on the hill, which had become an island.

Located between the cities of Nalgonda and Hyderabad, it is accessible on the State Highway, with the nearest train station being at Macherla, 29 km away. It is connected by a ferry to the mainland.

The area is also known for panoramic views of the valley from a viewing area near the dam, and is also the site of natural waterfalls, Ethipothala Falls which cascade down 22m into a blue lagoon that is also a breeding centre for crocodiles. The nearby Srisailam wildlife sanctuary, a Project Tiger reserve and refuge for diverse reptiles, birds and animals. Srisailam, which sits on the shore of Krishna in the Nallamala Hills is a site of immense historical and religious significance, including a Shiva temple that is one of the 12 sacred Jyotirlingas.

Parks >>

Indira Park

Located in the lower Tank Bund of Hyderabad, by the Hussain Sagar lake, Indira Park’s main attractions are its rare beautiful trees, the musical fountains, and the katta Maisama Temple. It got its name from the former prime minister of India, Indira Gandhi. Construction for the park formally started in 1975, when then President of India, Late Faqruddin Ahmed, laid the foundation stone. It was finally opened to the public in 1978.

The characteristic that sets Indira Park apart from other parks is the way it was designed, namely, in a novel manner that does not disturb the natural elements already present in the park such as the sandalwood trees, the wild date palms and the keuvda plantations. It is also a good place for a picnic. There are several stalls that serve food and drinks for anyone who’s hungry.

Lumbini Park

Constructed in 1994 and opened in the same year, Lumbini Park is a 7.5 acre public park located 3 kilometers from Hyderabad, just adjacent to Hussain Sagar Lake. It attracts many visitors a year, owing in part to its close proximity to other tourist attractions such as the Birla Mandir, and its geographical location; it is located in the center of the city. Some of its attractions include a Floral Clock, man-made waterfalls, and the musical dancing fountains. There’s a show of the fountains organized daily at 6:30 pm where the fountains dance to the tune of several Bollywood films, accompanied by light shows.

Sanjeevaiah Park

Named after the former President of India, Dr. Neelam Sanjeev Reddy, Sanjeevaiah Park is located near Hussain Sagar Lake. It was neglected for some time but has since been given a much-needed face-lift. Due to its popularity with the young couples who come for long walks there, it has gained the nickname “Lovers Park”. Exclusive, multi-colored breeds of roses are also found, as well as a Rock Garden that has many different shapes and sizes of rocks.

Wildlife >>

Nehru Zoological Park

The Nehru Zoological Park (also known as Nehru Zoo) is a wildlife sanctuary situated 16 kilometers from Hyderabad, in the Bahadurpur area. It has an area of about 300 acres and it houses about 1,500 species of birds, animals, and reptiles. There is also the option of going to a jeep safari for the more adventurous tourist. The park also has a Natural History museum that educates the young kids about the importance or the animals to the world.

Mrigavani National Park

In a world where technology and modernism are demanding more and more of the Earth’s space and resources, it seems that national parks are fast becoming the last places of refuge for indigenous species of animals and plants in the world. Governments around the world are also starting to realize the importance of preserving these last bastions of wildlife sanctuary, and as such, have declared them off-limits to human and civilization encroachment. It is a very good decision, as national parks are also among a country’s prime tourist attractions.

Mrugavani National Park in Hyderabad is one such example of a national park turned prime tourist attraction and, in a land steeped with exotic and great natural resources such as India, that is a great achievement. Located at Chilkur in Moinabad, some 25 kilometers from Hyderabad, Mruvagani National Park is sprawled over 3.5 square kilometers of pure, untamed land. It was made a wildlife sanctuary by the Indian government in 1994 and has been home to about 600 species of plant and animal life since. Like most national parks, human intervention and interaction is strongly monitored in order to ensure that all the creatures remain undisturbed in their natural habitat.

The park has a topography composed of the rocky exposures characteristic of Deccan formation, while the vegetation is one that is decidedly tropical as expected of dry forests interspersed with woodlands and grasslands. The plant life found in Nrugavani National Park include shrubs and herbs while the tree life is populated by Teak, Sandalwood, and bamboos, among others. The fauna, on the other hand, is as varied as they come. Wild boars, foxes, black-naped hares, as well as Indian vipers can be found for the curious citizen. For the avid birdwatchers, the park is also home to more than 100 species of birds, including warblers, peacocks, lapwings, and flower peckers.

The visitors can choose several acitivities that will heighten their experience in the park. Safari rides are available for those who want to get up close and personal with several of the park’s denizens. One can also take nature walks with guides, checking out the hidden beauty of the park. For accommodations, visitors can have their choice among tents, cottages, and dormitories, with price varying between each accommodation. Transportation to the park is not a problem either as there are direct bus services available from Hyderabad.

Mahavir Harina Vanasthali

In this day and age of technological advancement and modern civilization, one of the more pressing serious trade-offs man has to make in exchange for progress is the rapid decline of forests and the countryside. As a result, several species of wildlife are facing extinction and rarity. In the face of this alarming concern, governments around the world have started to save what they can in order to preserve the beauty and balance of nature and the ecosystem. Thus, wildlife reserves and national parks are born. They are declared and owned by a country’s national government and are protected from urban development and pollution. They are, in a sense, the last sanctuary for Mother Nature.

The Mahavir Harina Vanasthali National Park in Hyderabad is one such attraction. Named after the holy Jain saint Lord Mahavir, the park is located in Vanasthalipuram, a residential suburb 15 kilometers from Hyderabad. It is particularly well-known for being the home of the endangered Black Buck deer. The deer, also known as Krishna Jinka in Telugu language, is Andhra Pradesh’s state animal and was the most hunted animal in all of India during the 18th, 19th, and the first half od the 20th century. Fortunately, the declaration of the Mahavir Harina Vanasthali as a national park helped in saving it from certain extinction.

Aside from the deer, there are also other animals that make the national park their home. Cheetahs, wild board, monitor lizards, porcupines, and several variety of snakes can be found roaming in the park’s 14.59 square kilometer area. There are also several species of birds such as quails, cormorants, pond herons and egrets available for the avid bird watchers. Of note is the Short-toed Eagle, a rare variety of the bird species, which can be found in this area.

Visitors can view the animals via sheds and viewing towers. Vans are also provided to take the visitors on a safari ride within the park premises to watch the animals close. The rides are scheduled between 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM, with the requisite entry fee needed for entrance. There is also an exhibition hall where one can learn about wildlife conservation.

KBR National Park

Hyderabad is a city that has seen a surge of progress and growth in the past ten or so years. Thanks in part to the decision of the Andhra Pradesh government to make Hyderabad the next cybercity of the new millennium, Hyderabad has become a progressive jungle of concrete and steel, steadily climbing the ladder of global recognition. What’s even more surprising is the fact within this jungle of noise and buildings and modernization, there lies another jungle that is the complete antithesis of the megacity: one that is teeming with life that is more primal and uncivilized and yet, exotically beautiful. This place is called the Kasu Brahmananda Reddy National Park, or commonly abbreviated as KBR National Park, and no tourist of Hyderabad should ever visit the city without checking the park out.

Established in 1994 in order to protect the biodiversity and richness of the area it is on, the Kasu Brhamananda Reddy National Park covers about 156 hectares of land right smack in Hyderabad’s Jubilee Hills. The park is named after Andhra Pradesh’s former prime minister Kasu Brahmananda Reddy, and it is a rather unique park in its own way. Aside from being picturesque and teeming with flora and fauna life like most national parks, it also has the magnificent Chitan Palace by the former Nizam of Hyderabad as well as other historic structures.

The park is home to a wide variety of plant and animal life. There are over 600 species of plants and trees one can find within its vicinity, ranging from shrubs, herbs, to climbers and creepers, not to mention several pteridophytes and xerophytes. As for the fauna, the park is home to approximately 113 species of birds, 20 species of reptiles, 20 species of mammals, 15 species of butterflies, and a wide variety of invertebrates. While there are no large mammals present in KBR National Park, palm civets and small jungle cats can be found.

The dense trees and foliage inside the park will most times cause a drop of temperature once one enters the park premises. It is a wonderful feeling of freshness and coolness that cannot be found in the humid and sweaty environment of the city. Most of all, good infrastructure of toilets, dustbins and benches backed by an able group of park custodians and maintenance crew assures that the park is clean and well-maintained throughout, preserving its beauty and grandeur for generations to come.

Srisailam Sanctuary

Nagarunsagar-Srisailam Tiger Reserve is the largest Tiger reserve in India and the only Tiger Reserve in Andhra Pradesh state. The reserve spreads over five districts, Nalgonda District, Mahbubnagar district, Kurnool District, Prakasam District and Guntur District. The total area of the tiger reserve is 3,568 km (1,378 sq mi). The core area of this reserve is 1,200 km (460 sq mi). The reservoirs and temples of Srisailam are major attraction for many tourists and pilgrims.

This reserve is located between Longitude: 78°30' to 79°28' East and Latitude: 15°53' to 16°43' North. Elevation varies from 100 m (330 ft) to 917 m (3,009 ft) above mean sea level Average annual rainfall is 1,000 mm (39 in) The multipurpose reservoirs, Srisailam and Nagarjunasagar, are located in the reserve.

The area consists mostly of the Nallamala Hills but varies from plains to precipitous cliffs. More than 80 per cent of the area is gently rolling to hilly. High hills, deep valleys and gorges are characteristic features. The hill ranges contain number of plateau of which Amrabad, Srisailam, Peddacheruvu, Sivapuram, Nekkanti are note worthy.

Nagarjunasagar receives rains from the southwest monsoon which is active from second half of June to the end of September. After a dry spell of one month during October, the northeast monsoon becomes active. The wildlife is generally confined to plateaues during monsoon and in valleys during summer.

The perennial water sources are generally located in the valleys and the plateaus suffer from acute scarcity for water during summer. The Krishna river cuts its basin almost 200 m (660 ft) deep over a distance of 130 km (81 mi) through the reserve. There are several waterfalls in the reserve such as the Ethipothala Falls, Pedda Dukudu, Gundam and Chaleswaram.

He Nagarjunasagar-Srisailam Sanctuary was notified in 1978 and came under the protection of Project Tiger in 1983. The Reserve was renamed as Rajiv Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary in 1992. Before Indian independence in 1947, the southern half of the reserve was under control of the British in India while the northern half was controlled by the rulers of the princely State of Hyderabad, who maintained it as a hunting reserve for royalty and their guests.

In 1983 there were 40 tigers in the reserve. The habitat suffered severely due to high frequency of poaching, grazing, fires and exploitation of trees and bamboo. Improvements in water resources, check dams, artificial troughs, new fire lines, salt licks and better protection has helped restore the habitat. In 1989 the tiger numbers were put at 94 an increase of 130% in 6 years. There was no other census till 1993 due to extremist interference in the area.

Lakes >>

Hussain Sagar Lake

Hussain Sagar is a lake in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India, built by Hazrat Hussain Shah Wali in 1562, during the rule of Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah. It was 5.7 square kilometres built on a tributary of the River Musi to meet the water and irrigation needs of the city. There is a large monolithic statue of the Gautam Buddha in the middle of the lake which was erected in 1992. At the end of the Hussain Sagar one can find the Masjid and Dargah of Sayedani Maa Tomb.

Osman Sagar Lake

Osman sagar was created by damming the Musi River in 1920, for providing drinking water source for Hyderabad, and also saving the city from floods, on the lines of which Hyderabad suffered in 1908. It was during the reign of The Last Nizam of Hyderabad, Osman Ali Khan, hence the name.
A princely guest house called Sagar Mahal, overlooking the lake, now a heritage building, was built as a summer resort of the last Nizam. It is located on the banks and has the best view of the lake. Andhra Pradesh Tourism Department, currently, runs the place as a resort. The breeze of the lake is very pleasant, and has been popular with the locals since The Nizam's time.

It is a popular tourist destination, especially after the rainy season when the reservoir is full, and its parks, resorts, amusement park are a major attraction. This lake had served drinking water for Hyderabad city but due to increase in population it is not sufficient for water supply to Hyderabad city and so now it is used for public recreation.

Himayat Sagar

Himayat Sagar is an artificial lake located about 20 km from Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh, India. It lies parallel to another artificial lake Osman Sagar and it is smaller in size among both. The storage capacity of the reservoir is about 3.0 TMC.

The construction of reservoir on Esi a tributary of Musi River was completed in 1927, for providing drinking water source for Hyderabad, and also saving the city from floods, which Hyderabad suffered in 1908. It was built during the reign of The Last Nizam of Hyderabad, Nizam VII and so it is named after his youngest son Himayat Ali Khan.

The Himayat Sagar and Osman Sagar reservoirs provided continuous water supply to the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad until recent but due to growth in population it was not sufficient for water supply to Hyderabad city. The Enigneer at the time of construction was Late Khaja Mohinuddin S/O Mohammed Hussein, Madri.

The grassy area adjoining the lake is an ideal picnic and recreation spot. The road atop the bund is popular for a good road drive.

Shamirpet Lake

Shamirpet Lake is an artificial lake near Hyderabad, India, about 24 kilometers north of Secunderabad. It was built during the Nizam reign.

The lake attracts many birds, making it a good birdwatching spot. A resort run by the Government of Andhra Pradesh is located near the lake. The Outer Ring Road will pass close to the lake.There are many resorts and Private Dhabas around the lake. The famous Celebrity Club and the 4 star Alankrita Resort are not very far from the lake. The Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani Hyderabad campus is also situated near the lake. It can also be seen from the lake.

There is a Jawahar Deer Park, which contains many deer, peacocks and different Birds, is also near to the lake. The Deer park is maintained by the Government of Andhra Pradesh.

Many people come there for a picnic or a get together. Many Telugu Films were shot there.

The Shamirpet Police takes care of the lake as there were many cases regarding drowning of people in this lake. There are many Warning Boards around the lake erected by the Authorities.

The Nalsar University of Law is also situated near the lake, which is one of the top Law schools of India.

Secret Lake

Durgam Cheruvu is a freshwater lake located in Rangareddy district, Andhra Pradesh, India. The lake, which is spread over 83 acres (34 ha), is located near the city of Hyderabad. The lake is also known as Secret Lake because it is hidden between the localities of Jubilee Hills and Madhapur.

In 2001, the tourism department of the local government initiated steps to promote the lake as a tourist destination. As a part of this, five boats were to be deployed at the lake.
In 2002, the lake started to become a destination for people who go for fishing as a pastime. Few citizens from the nearby city of Hyderabad travel to this lake on the weekends to relax and enjoy fishing. To capitalise on the visitors, the local agencies expanded their tourism plans by turning the lake into a fishing zone. As a part of the various beautification steps, the area surrounding the lake was illuminated, artificial waterfalls, a rock garden and a floating fountain were added. In addition to this, proper seating arrangements, a 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) walkway and restaurants were established.

Adventure activities like rock climbing, trekking, rappelling, an art gallery and a sculptor park for artists were also introduced as attractions. An amphitheater, with a capacity to hold 1,500 people at a time, was also added for public access. The entire exercise was completed at a cost of 20 million (US$370,000).

Mir Alam Tank

Mir Alam Tank is a lake in Hyderabad, India, located adjacent to Nehru Zoological Park on the Hyderabad-Bangalore Highway. It has provided drinking water to Hyderabad people for 125 years before the Osman Sagar and Himayat Sagar were built.

Mir Alam laid the foundation for the tank on July 20, 1804, as a plaque still lying in a corner shows. It was completed in about two years on June 8, 1806.

It was named after Mir Alam Bahadur (Syed Abdul Khasim), the then Prime Minister (1804 - 1808) of Hyderabad state during the reign of Mir Akbar Ali Khan Sikander Jah, Asaf Jah III, the third Nizam of Hyderabad state.

Mir Alam was among those who led the Nizam's forces in the battle against Tipu Sultan. It was from the share of the treasure he got from Srirangapatnam that he built the tank. AP Tourism operates boats on the lake, for which one has to enter through the zoo.