MONUMENTS OF ANDHRA PRADESH
The Charminar is as much the signature of Hyderabad as the Taj Mahal of Agra or the Eiffel Tower of Paris. Mohammed Quli Qutub Shah, the founder of Hyderabad, builds Charminar in 1951 at the center of the original city layout. Legend has it that it was build as charm to; ward off a deadly epidemic raging at that time. Four graceful minarets soar to height of 180 feet., above the ground Charminar has 45 prayer spaces and a mosque in it. It stands guard like a sentinel to entry point of the main bazaar, which makes Hyderabad the shopper’s paradise. The minar is an imitation of structure (tazia) representing the tomb of Imam Hussain, paraded at the Muharram Festival. Four roads radiate from it. The Charminar had rooms, which were used as Madarsah or Schools and a Masjid or hall of prayer. Adjoining the four towers, there was Charsu-ka-hauz (cistern of four roads) encircled by four arches, From the balcony erected here, the kind used to witness the maneuvers of his troops and give audience to the public. Here too are the fabulous market places for pearls, bangles, crystals glass and the markets for attar, handicrafts, toys, sarees and textiles. The gateway, also described as the ‘Arcade Triumph’ of the East was built as a memorial to the victims of the plague that almost wiped out the entire population.
How to reach?
- City Local Bus Route No. 8 Secunderabad - Charminar (Route: Patny, Paradise, Ranigunj, DBR Mills, Tank Bund, Secretariat, Birla Mandir, Assembly Hall, Nampally, Gandhi Bhavan, MJ Market, Begumbazar, Afzalgunj, Madina, Charminar)
- City Local Bus Other Route Nos. available: 8, 8C, 8D, 2, 2C, 2U.
Constructing a dam on the river Musi in the year 1920 by H.E.H. Mir Osman Ali Khan, planned by Bharath Ratna Sir. Mokshagundam Visweswarayya for the water supply to Hyderabad city, formed this beautiful lake. The catchments area of the lake is 46 sq.km. It is the main drinking water source for the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad. The place offers an excellent picnic spot with well-laid gardens. It is popularly known as Gandipet. Andhra Pradesh Tourism has a guesthouse called "Sagar Mahal", which was the summer resort of the then Nizam. It has 5 double rooms with the adjoining ‘Vishranthi’ guesthouse providing 6 double rooms. 20 km’s away from the city. On the way to Gandipet, you can visit two theme amusement parks for kids, Elles World and Ocean Park. While Elles World, the first park of its kind, offers several fun rides for kids, Ocean Park has attractions like a kiddies pool, a 60-ft high ride, the Slam Bomb, bumping cars and dry rides for people of all ages. Entry into the park, at Rs. 100 per person, is expensive, though.
How to reach?
- HYDERABAD CITY Bus: Route No.5 - Secunderabad-Mehdipatnam (Route: Patny, Paradise, Ranigunj, Tankbund, Lakdikapul, Golconda Hotel, S.D.Eye Hospital, Mehdipatnam).
- Other Route Nos.Available up to Mehdipatnam: 5C, 5K, 5L, 5M, 5S, 5T, 5R.
- From Mehdipatnam there are several shuttle services provided by APSRTC. Route Nos. From Mehidipatnam to Osmansagar: Bus No 120 (Covering Areas - Lungarhouz, Imbrahiimbagh, Osmansagar)
Golconda Fort, Hyderabad:
Before the city of Hyderabad was founded the Kakatiya’s ruled the Deccan from Golconda fort Founded originally in the 13th century the existing structure was expanded by the Qutub Shahi kings into a massive fort of granite with walls and ramparts extending some 5km in circumference. The fortress city within the walls was famous for the diamond is said to have come from here. The historic Golconda fort lies 11km west of the city. The name originates from the Telugu words "Golla" and "Konda" sphephered’s hill. Later the fort was taken over by the Bahamani kings, subsequently passing to the Qutub Shahi’s who held it from 1512 to 1687 AD. The first three Qutub Shahi kings rebuilt Golconda over a span of 62 years. Famous features of Golconda include its system of acoustics, palaces, factories, water supply system and the famous Rahban cannon, one of those used during the last seize of Golconda by Aurangazeb, to whom the fort ultimately fell. A.P. Tourism’s sound and light show in the evening reenacts the glory and grandeur of the Qutub Shahi dynasty.
Sound and Light Show at Golconda Fort:
- 1st show English All days Nov-Feb 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm, March-October: 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
- 2nd Show English Monday Nov-Feb 7:45 pm - 8:45 pm, March-Oct 8:15 pm - 9:15 pm
- 2nd show Telugu Tue, Thu, Saturday Nov-Feb 7:45 pm - 8:45 pm, March - Oct 8:15 pm t-9:15 pm
- 2nd show Hindi Wed, Fri, Sunday Nov - Feb 7:45 pm - 8:45 pm, March-Oct 8:15 pm - 9:15 pm
- Tariff: Adults Rs.25/, Child Rs.15/
- Special show: Rs.7, 500/- for 400 members
How to reach?
- HYDERABAD CITY Bus : Route No.5 Secunderabd-Charminar (Route: Patny, Paradise, Ranigunj, Tank Bund, Lakdikapul, Golconda Hotel, S.D.Eye Hospital, Mehdipatnam).
- From Mehdipatnam there are several shuttle services provided by APSRTC.
- Other Route Nos. available upto Mehdipatnam : 5K, 5L, 5M, 5S, 5T, 5R.
- Route Nos. 119, 142 : Nampally - Golconda Fort.
- Other Transportation: Taxis, Auto rickshaws.
Hussain Sagar, Hyderabad:
Mohammad Quli Qutub Shah founded Hyderabad in 1591 on the banks of Musi River. The city has a glorious tradition of tanks and lakes. Hussain sagar links Hyderabad with Secunderabad with a bund, known as the Tank Bund, which is 2.5 Km long. The Hussain Sagar Lake which links twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad was constructed in 1562 A.D. The bund was built even before the founding of the city Hyderabad and the Charminar. The excavation of the lake was carried out in 3 years, 7 months and 19 days from the date of commencement. Sultan Ibrahim Qutub Shah-II asked his son-in-law Hazarath Hussain Shah Wali, who was a great Engineer of that time to construct a Palace, a Mosque, a Garden and a Tank. The people of the city called this water body Hussain Saab Cheruvu.
Subsequently on completion of the tank, the Sultan named it after his son-in-law Hussain Sagar. The characteristic features of this bund were its stone masonry construction, its architectural design and shape ,its butterfly sluices with provision for automatic outflow of surplus water. The first source of water supply to Hyderabad is Hussain Sagar Lake. The Lake was constructed in 1562 AD on the Tributary of Musi.
It covers an area of 8 Square Km. In 1891 a Slow sand filter was setup in Narayanaguda and the lake was used to provide Drinking Water. The water of Hussain Sagar Lake was sufficient for the people of Hyderabad then. The first piped protected water supply to the city was started from the Lake. The old water pipe lines are still functional.
The water of this lake was used for irrigation as well as drinking purpose for over 350 years.The area of this lake in the past was about 1664 hectares. This area has progressively decreased to 350 to 400 hectares. It is a treasure and heritage water body which connects Hyderabad and Secunderabad cities. That’s why they are called as twin cities. One cannot think of twin cities without Hussain Sagar Lake. The lake is an ecological asset to the twin cities as its water spreads not only caters to the water needs of the twin city people but also charges ground water in the areas around it. The water of this lake served the drinking water needs up to around 1930. The water was reasonably good up to 1976 with rich aquatic life. Birds from Europe used to halt in the lake in the winter season during their migration to the southern region.
Later 33 statues of historical personage of Andhra Desha were placed along the bund of the lake. The well laid out Lumbini park located in the Buddha Purnima project has a musical fountain.
Buddha Purnima Project:
As a part of the Buddha Purnima Project on Tank bund, a magnificent 18lm high, 350 tones monolithic statue of Lord Buddha has been erected on the ‘Rock of Gibraltar’ in the middle of the lake. The project is a great tourist draw.
Note: Summer Season Plaza (Sunday Tamasha) - every Sunday in summer season traffic will be stopped from 6 p.m - 8 p.m.
Free Traffic Zone from 5.30 a.m - 7.30 a.m. (It is useful for morning walkers)
How to reach?
- Bus : Route No. 8 Secunderabad - Charminar (Covering Areas: Patny, Paradise, Ranigunj, DBR Mills, Tankbund, Secretariat, Birla Mandir)
Ramappa situated in Palampet village 70 kms from Warangal town in Andhra Pradesh is a magnificent monument dating back to 1213 A.D. It is also called by Ramalingeswara temple. It documents the glory and grandeur of the Kakatiya kingdom. Among the important and exquite monuments of the State, the temple of Palampet, popularly known as Ramappa Temple, is an archeological wonder. The Kakatiya kings reigned over Andhra Pradesh for about 200 years between the 10th and 12th centuries AD. They were great builders and patrons of art. An inscription at the temple premises reads that the temple of Ramappa was built on behalf of the king, Kakati Ganapathi Deva by his chief commander Rudra Samani at a place called Ranakude in Atukaru province. The inscription conveys that there were three temples Kateswara, Kameshwara and Rudreswara-all dedicated to their chief deity Shiva. Today, except for the main edifice of Rudreswara which is more or less intact, the other two shrines are in a totally ruined state. The temple is a Shivalaya and stands majestically on a six feet high star-shaped platform in a spacious compound amidst picturesque surroundings dotted with countless date palm trees. On the western side is the idyllic Ramappa lake constructed during the same period as the temple. The building of a temple and an irrigation tank side by side was the tradition of the Kakatiya rulers. Kakti Ganapati Deva was a great patron of art and learning and Ramappa temple was his best contribution to the world of South Indian temple architecture.
How to reach Ramappa Temple?
- Rail: Trains are available from Secunderabad Railway station.
- Bus: Buses available from Jubilee Bus station (Secunderabad) and Mahatma Gandhi memorial bus station(Gawliguda)
- Mahatma Gandhi Memorial bus station (Gawliguda): Reservation 4734158; Enquiries 4618685, 4614406; Alighting Point 4601919
- Jubilee Bus Station: Enquiries & Reservations: 7802203
Visakhapatnam Historical Places:
Borra Caves discovered by William King George from the Geological Survey of India in 1807. Caves are located at 43km from Srungavarapukota, 90-95 km from Vishakhapatnam.
Pavuralakonda or 'the hill of the pigeons' is a hillock lying to the west of Bhimli, at about 24 km from Vizag,where a Buddist site identified.
Medak is endowed with archaeological treasures. In ancient times it was a teeming metropolis of Buddhist culture as revealed by several archaeological excavations. The main landmark of Medak is the church. Standing firm and awe inspiringly tall amidst sylvan surroundings, the church dominates the skyline beckoning the faithful.
The Mogalarajapuram caves are another site of interest. These have three cave temples, dating back to the 5th century A.D., one of which is well preserved. It contains the idols of Lord Nataraja, Vinayaka and others. The Ardhana-reeshwara Murthy found here is considered the only one of its kind in South India.
Warangal is the mighty capital of the Kakatiya Kingdom. Just about 157 kms from Hyderabad, lies the legendary city of Warangal, which has found its way into Mareo Plo's travel diaries! Cross the threshold through the impressive huge stone gateways, A Kakaitya King Ganapathi Deva and his daughter, Rani Rudrama, built the Waragal Fort in the 13th century, the once impregnable fort combines geometrical intricacies and beautifully carved arches.