This was my first visit to Hyderabad and I had chosen to see Golconda fort over Ramoji film city. I had so chosen because, Ramoji film city is mainly about extravagant sets and at Golconda fort I can revisit history. Forts are typically mysterious and it is an adventure to be there.
In Hyderabad I was staying at Golidoddy near Gachibowli. In the morning around 9 AM we left for Golconda fort. The distance is about 15 km via Osman Sagar road. The area around the fort are owned by the Indian army. I kept reading the name of various regiments and departments, till we reached the gate of Golconda fort. One might experience little traffic once inside the fort gates.
Timings: 9 AM to 5. 30 PM (open all days)
Entry fees: Rs 5 for Indian, Rs 100 for foreigners
Camera fees: Rs 25
Toilet available: Yes
At the dome entrance, it is said if one claps it can be heard from the hilltop pavilion. This acoustic design really make people wonder.
The present fort can be traced back to a mud fort built by the then Rajah of Warangal in the 12th century AD. Between 14th and 16th the mud fort was rebuilt with stone by the Bhamani sultanate and Qutub Shahi dynasty. It is said Golconda is derived from two Telugu words Golla and Konda meaning shepherd’s hill. The bright days of Golconda came to an end in 1687 after it was conquered by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.
After dome entrance, one can find shops to buy gold drinks, water and light snacks. Just beside there is a 3 story building with numerous windows which be placed symmetrically. All the windows on the ground floor has iron curtains, the 1st floor has iron curtains on two windows on the extreme side and the 2nd floor has none. It got me little curious but had leave it there. Walked little further and was able to see the fort walls. The fort is mainly made of granite stones.
Little further we passed through a door which led us to an open space which resembled like a small town square. It had a fountain at the center. Here I felt that time has taken its toll on the fort and its crumbling. After this area, the climb to the top pavillion starts. The climb is easy and should not be more than 150 steps. But at some places the steps has broken. So be careful specially if you are trekking with children and elders. I can assure you that the climb to the top is worth it. You will be able to see all of Hyderabad with a Bird’s eye view. The hill at the top has plateaued and the top pavillion rises from here. Also, we found a goddess Kali temple at the top. It is called Jagadamba Mahakali Temple. It said a shepherd found an idol on this hill during the Kakatiya dynasty rule and the king built a mud fort.
Golconda fort is well maintained. Outside the fort there is small bazaar on the road side. Here, one can look for bangles, old coins (check for authenticity) etc.
The fort also showcases a sound and light show which can be enjoyed for a fees. Plan your visit in the afternoon so that you can see the fort during daylight and subsequently enjoy the sound and light show in the evening.