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Hyderabad Sightseeing Guide - Visit notable attractions and landmarks

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Most of the city's attractions are tucked away in its old quarters. Although the multitude of glass-fronted modern buildings reflects attention away from the historic Old Town, they do nothing to taint the city's undeniable charm.

Hyderabad combines modern, traditional and natural elements with ease, and this blend adds to the city's tourist appeal. Visitors can wander the streets of the charismatic Old City, where the architectural style of the houses, tenements and gardens hint at a deep-rooted history. Mosques, minarets and bazaars are set amongst a cityscape softened by hills, bridges and waterways, adding further character and charm to the scene.

Charminar is not only a masterpiece, but an icon of the city. The four towers soar above the busy thoroughfare below, providing a fantastic view over the city. The nearby Chowmahall Palace was once the seat of the Asaf Jahi Dynasty and the imposing Golconda Fort was the first capital of the Qutbi Shahi Kingdom.

Other attractions in Hyderabad include the AP State Museum with its collection of ancient artifacts and there are a number of other excellent museums in the city. Hussein Sagar Lake, built in 1562, is a historical landmark, while Mecca Masjid is one of the oldest and largest mosques in the city.

Charminar

An iconic symbol of Hyderabad, Charminar was constructed on the spot where Quli Qtub Shali prayed for the plague epidemic to end. There is a mosque inside and the minarets provide a bird's eye view over the city. The building is located on a busy junction but a pedestrian walkway is under construction.

Chowmahall Palace

The Nazim used this complex of palaces for entertaining official visitors and royal guests. It was recently refurbished and is now used for large conferences and events.

Golconda Fort

This massive complex is one of the most impressive fortresses in India. Golconda Fort's location and design makes it one of the sturdiest forts in the world. The surrounding wall is 10kms in length, and visitors should allow a few hours to explore the compound in detail. The hour-long light and sound show is very informative and well worth hanging around for. The fort is 11kms west of Hyderabad, so taking a taxi is the best option.

Mecca Masjid

Hyderabad's largest mosque can hold up to 10,000 worshippers at a time. The massive granite structure features bricks made from Mecca's earth, which explains the mosque's name. Building began in 1617 and was completed in 1694. The site is very close to Charminar and can be reached on foot. 

AP State Museum

The AP State Museum houses an impressive display of items dating back to ancient civilizations, as well as pieces from more recent periods. Artifacts on show range from lotus medallions from the 1st century, to beautiful bedspreads that once belonged to Nizams. The museum is located in the city's public gardens and can be reached on foot.

Hussein Sagar Lake

More than just a navigation point, this body of water has its own place in the city's history. The lake was formed in 1562, during the reign of Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah, by damming the River Musi. The lake is surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens. Located at the heart of the city, Hussein Sagar Lake can be reached on foot. 

Birla Mandir

Following their long standing tradition, the Birlas constructed this white marble temple on top of Naubat Pahad. The structure is dedicated to the Hindu god, Lord Ventkateswara. Steps provide access to the temple. Alternatively, it is possible to drive to the top of the mountain. 

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