Saturday, December 8, 2012

Hyderabad - The Old City

Today we were fortunate to be able to visit the Old City of Hyderabad.  There had been some recent safety concerns in that area and we were all recommended to stay away through 8am this morning.  Luckily, that left us one full day to take in what is the central, high volume area of the city.

We started out with a visit to Birla Mandir Temple.  This temple is primarily dedicated to Lord Venkateshwara and his two wives; however, it also has shrines for a number of other Gods like Shiva, Ganesh, and Lakshmi.  The temple is built entirely out of white marble and is located at the top of a hill.  You're not allowed to take a camera inside the temple, so I don't have any of my own shots.  Here's one I grabbed from Google Images:


Our second stop of the day was Salar Jung Museum.  This is a museum that was created by the last Nizam monarch, Nawab Mir Yousuf Ali Khan Salar Jung III.  The Museum name comes directly from the name of the kings of the Nizam dynasty.  These guys were a 7 king dynasty that began in 1724 and ended in 1949.  Here's a shot from the outside of the museum:

With all the folks that are packed in to the Old City and our lack of time, we simply drove past Charminar.  When you see Charminar you're reminded of the big arches you see in European cities like Paris and Rome.  Things like the Arc de Triomphe, etc.  Charminar wasn't built to celebrate a military victory however; it was built to celebrate the end of a plague.

I would have liked to spend a little time looking at it; however, we had other things to move on to, namely Chowmahalla Palace, the home of the Nizams.  To me, this is a pretty amazing palace.  Some of our hosts felt like India had a lot more to offer with respect to beautiful palaces.  For me, I love walking around places like this that are still significant, but have seen better days.  I find it fun to imagine what once was.

We had a lot of fun here, particularly with all the school children who were touring the castle on field trips.  If they weren't shaking our hands and asking where we were from, they were trying to get their pictures with us.  It was a lot of fun.  Here are some of my pictures from Chowmahalla:

Main building


Beautiful ceiling and pillar of the main building

Court area of the main building

Ram, Krishna, and Vikas

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