Hyderabad is the capital city and most populous city of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. The city of Hyderabad has an estimated population of around 4.8 million.Hyderabad is known for its rich history, culture and architecture representing its unique character as a meeting point for North and South India, and also its multilingual culture, both geographically and culturally.
Hyderabad has become a preferred conference venue in India as well as in Asia, with many conferences and meetings taking place in the city. The city is home to the world's largest film studio, the Ramoji Film City as well as the second largest film industry in the country, the Telugu Film Industry known popularly as Tollywood. The city is also known to be a sporting destination with many national and international games conducted here. The city is regarded as a blend of traditionality with modernity.
Hyderabad's history dates back to 500 BC, as proved by the discovery of numerous Iron Age sites belonging to that era.
Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, a ruler of the Qutb Shahi dynasty the ruling family of the Golconda, previously a feudatory of Bahmani sultanate that declared independence in 1512, founded the city of Hyderabad on the banks of the Musi River in 1591; to relieve a water shortage the dynasty had experienced at their old headquarters at Golconda. He also ordered the construction of the Charminar, the iconic monument of the city, in 1591, reportedly in gratitude to the Almighty for arresting the plague epidemic before it did irreversible damage to his new city.
Mughal emperor Aurangzeb captured Hyderabad in 1687 and during this short Mughal rule. But the Mughal-appointed governors of the city soon gained autonomy. In 1724, Asaf Jah I, who was granted the title Nizam-ul-Mulk by the Mughal emperor, defeated a rival official to establish control over Hyderabad. Thus began the Asaf Jahi dynasty that ruled Hyderabad until a year after India's independence from Britain. Asaf Jah's successors ruled as the Nizams of Hyderabad. The rule of the seven Nizams saw the growth of Hyderabad both culturally and economically. Hyderabad became the formal capital of the kingdom and Golconda was almost abandoned. Huge reservoirs, like the Nizam Sagar, Tungabhadra, Osman Sagar, Himayat Sagar, and others were built. Survey work on Nagarjuna Sagar had also begun during this time; the actual work was completed by the Government of India in 1969.
After the Indian independence in 1947, under the terms of independence from the British, the Nizam wanted to either remain independent or accede to Pakistan. India, then, implemented an economic blockade and forced Hyderabad state to sign a Standstill Agreement with the Indian Union. On September 17, 1948, more than a year after India had gained independence, the Nizam signed the Instrument of Accession to the Indian Union in the aftermath of Operation Polo.
Hyderabad has a tropical wet and dry climate with hot summers from late February to early June, the monsoon season from late June to early October and a warm winter from late October to early February. The highest temperature ever recorded was 42 o C while the lowest recorded temperature was 10 o C
Charminar - the major landmark in Hyderabad with four graceful minarets located in the old city.
Falaknuma Palace - Built by an Italian architect through one of the Paigah nobles, Nawab Viqar al-Umra', complete in Italian marble. It's a beautiful and stunning piece of architecture with Louis XIV-style decor, a lavish Mughal ambience, Italian marble staircases and ornate fountains.
Golconda Fort - located on the outskirts of the city, Golconda Fort is one of the most magnificent fortress complexes in India.
Chowmahalla Palace- It was the seat of Asaf Jahi dynasty, where the Nizam entertained his official guests and royal visitors. Initiated in 1750 by Nizam Salabat Jung and designed along the lines of the Shah's palace in Isfahan, this actually consists of a group of palaces each used as a Durbar Hall.
Salar Jung Museum - The museum houses the largest one-man collection of antiques in the world. Collections include "The Veiled Rebecca" and other huge collection of artifacts dating back to a few centuries. A mere day isn't enough to cover the whole museum.
Taramati Baradari - It is Located near Golconda, built by a Qutb Shahi sultan.
Mecca Masjid - a stone-built mosque, which lies immediate southwest of Charminar. Remarkable for its architecture, size and its royal splendour, this is one of the most beautiful mosques in Hyderabad.
Birla Mandir - a Hindu temple made of white marble located on top of a hill overlooking the city.
Birla Science Museum - The science centre is another beautiful structure, reflecting the advances made in science and technology. The interior dcor matches the architectural exterior of the centre built over 10,000 sq ft (930 m2). The centre is host to a number of divisions such as the Planetarium, the Science Museum, and the centre for Applied Mathematics and Computer Sciences.
Birla Planetarium - The Planetarium is another magnificent building with a big dome resembling that of the Gol Gumbaz in Bijapur and some of the earliest government structures in New Delhi. A special attraction are the shows which unveil the mysteries of the cosmos and the origins of the universe, comets, eclipses, unidentified flying objects and the clash of titans. The latest addition is the Dinosrium, which houses a collection of dinosaur egg fossils. The highlight of the museum is a mounted Kotasaurus yamanpalliensis, the remains of a 160 million old dinosaur.
Purani Haveli - The official residence of the Nizam.
King Kothi Palace - The last Nizam, Mir Osman Ali Khan lived here.
Qutb Shahi Tombs - Home to various Tombs dedicated to Rulers of Qutb Shahi dynasty, located at Shaikpet, near Golconda Fort.
Lumbini Park - This is one of the popular parks in the city. The main attraction of this park was the Musical fountain. It is now replaced by the 1500 seater Laserium, the first of its kind in the state. Boat rides take you across the lake to give you a closer glimpse of the Buddha.
Hussain Sagar - It is a man-made lake is also famous for the 19-metre tall Buddha statue on a platform island called "Rock of Gibraltar" in the middle of the lake, and for the Tank Bund which consists of beautiful gardens and statues of famous personalities. Boating and water sports are a regular feature here.
Nehru Zoological Park - This zoo is among the largest in India, houses a large variety of animals, birds, nocturnal species, aquatic and amphibian species etc. Located close to this is the Mir Alam lake, which is proposed to be converted into an Aquarium along the lines of Sentosa, Singapore.
Botanical Gardens - These gardens are spread across a sprawling area of 130 acres (0.53 km2), housing different varieties of herbs, plants, trees etc. These gardens provide a complete visual treat to the eyes with water bodies, meadows, and rich grasslands - nature at its best.
Chilkur Balaji - It is the temple of Lord Sri Venkateshwara. Located around 23 km from Mehdipatnam.