Travelling across a state can be chaotic. In a bid to cover all the bases, you often nick time off the duration you spend at each city. As I backpacked through Telangana, my itinerary was jam-packed, often leaving me no time to myself. While Hyderabad was the most important city to discover due to its cultural and economic significance, as well as its magnitude, I did not have much time to spare in the city. This muddle lead to me devising an all-encompassing one-day trip to the capital of Telangana. Follow through to know how to spend quality time with the city.
Minerva Coffee Shop
Don’t begin your day chock-full of activities on an empty stomach. In fact, use the opportunity to explore some popular eateries in the city. Try out a simple yet hearty South Indian breakfast at Minerva Coffee Shop (Himayat Nagar, Ameerpet, Madhapur, Jubilee Hills). The place serves vegetarian breakfast items; preferred dishes include idli and vada, paper dosa and even a heavy thali. Do not miss your chance to try their delicious coffee.
After a filling breakfast, get ready to engage with the main attractions of Hyderabad. The first place to lead a newcomer in Hyderabad is obviously the Charminar. Built by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah (the 5th sultan of the Qutb Shahi dynasty), the monument is a grand presence amidst the buzzing streets of the city. As the name suggests, the mosque is a structure identified by its four towering pillars (minars). Ornate and intricate, the interiors of the landmark are truly a visual treat, reflecting the architecture popular during the Mughal rule.
Post a visit to the iconic landmark, you can indulge in some shopping at the surrounding bazaars. The crowd-favourite Laad bazaar is a jewellery mecca, especially for those who enjoy bangles. The vivid colours and vibrant rumble in the bazaar is certainly enticing. For those who flaunt a more subtle sense of aesthetic, Pathar Gatti might be the right choice, a market that is famous for its pearls. It is in these bazaars that the city comes alive, giving way to the bustle in the people of Hyderabad.
Now for the moment that had you drooling all day. Hyderabadi Biryani. There is no visit complete in the city without a large serving of the famous biryani. An irresistible combination of rice, meat, spices and garnishes cooked in a high-pressure vessel, it is only appropriate to indulge in the dish every chance you get. Just as Karim’s is to Delhi and Haji Ali is to Mumbai, Paradise is the number one recommendation for biryani. While some say the food is hyped and not up to the mark, no one can deny the popularity it holds. Another recommendation we have for a perfect plate of biryani is Bawarchi’s. Both places also offer vegetarian options for those who do not wish to partake in the traditional meat recipe.
The palace where Nizams of Hyderabad lived for generations, Chowmahalla Palace has still maintained its elegance and grandeur through decades. A visit to this iconic location not only lets one enjoy the sophisticated architecture and the construction overall, but also gives the visitor a look into the history of the city and its previous rulers. The property still belongs to Barkat Ali Khan Mukarram Jah, the heir of the Nizams. Various courtyards, the clock tower, the council hall and Roshan Bangla; all unfold cultural and political ambitions of the Nizams. The name Chowmahalla itself means four palaces.
Nimrah Cafe and Bakery
A tea break is essential after a tiring day. Visit Nimrah Cafe and Bakery for a delicious selection of goodies. Break into the delectable Osmania biscuits and Anjeer rolls for a special treat. The humble setting is comforting, keeping you close to the city. Do not miss out on their Irani chai while hogging on the confectionary. Many stalls in the city also offer mulberry malai and falooda for a chilled snack.
Hussain Sagar Lake
After following the gruelling schedule, we would suggest a more relaxing activity for sundown. Opt for a serene view at the Hussain Sagar lake and watch the sea dip in the still waters. A large statue of Gautam Buddha dominates the centre of the lake. Built across a tributary of the River Musi, the lake is lit up at night, providing a tranquil way, perfect to end the day.
For those whose nights don’t end so soon, Hyderabad nightlife is a scene to experience. Bars and clubs such as 10 Downing street, Block 22 club and Coco’s are open for your service. Dance and party through the night to end the trip in an epic fashion.
Bonus: Ramoji Film city
For those who have more than mere 24 hours to space in the magnificent city, Ramoji Film City is a must-visit tourist attraction. You can take the tour across the film city and witness various sets and locations that were featured in major Tollywood and Bollywood movies. Additionally there are many creative features for tourists, including themed events, adventure activities, amusement parks, and eco-zones. With restaurants and accommodations, you can truly immerse yourself in the experience.