After another gourmet breakfast at the Taj Krishna we set off with a driver and guide to the Chowmahalla Palace.
Chowmahallat means “four palaces” in Dakhini Urdu and is the palace of the former Nizams of Hyderabad. The history of this palace is fascinating, not just because of the building of the palace but the financial wrangling between the heirs that was the downfall of this palace.
At one point in the seventies there were 476 legal heirs to this Estate.
Finally in 2005 Princess Esra (the first wife of Prince Mukkaram Jah) decided to start renovations. Prince Mukkaram Jah fled to Perth in the seventies and lived on a sheep farm in the Australian Outback. He married four more times after Princess Esra. I’ve included a few links to this post as there is so much more interesting history to read.
In front of the palace
Waiting to start our tour
Top: Ladies sweeping the grass
Middle: Through one of the ornate window frames
Bottom: Ornamental pond in front of the palace
Top: Prince Mukkaram Jah with his father
Middle and Bottom: The magnificent crystal chandeliers made of Belgian glass
Top: One of the beautiful corridors inside the palace
Middle: Palace Courtyard
Bottom: The clocktower above the main gate – Khilwat Clock, which has been ticking for 251 years and is wound weekly by expert clock repairers
We practically had the whole place to ourselves and had a fantastic tour around the palace. No visit to Hyderabad would be complete without a visit here!
Charminar was our next stop but not before we had some lunch. I must say I was a bit wary about what we would eat, knowing it would probably me far too hot for Maddy and me! But not to worry as our driver took us to a great little restaurant called Masqati Nizam Hotel. This was such a friendly restaurant with westerners and locals alike. We had a delicious biryani and we were both able to eat it.
This was on the wall depicting a time many decades before!
And then it was out onto the street to explore the market in all its glory! After the peace and tranquility of the Palace it was a great shock to the senses. Not for Anthony though as these are places he thrives in.
It was impossible to just stroll around as all the roads were dug up in various places for no reason I could see whatsoever. Piles and piles of rubble to stumble over or around.
Maddy and I picked up some lovely scarves, after the requisite bartering of course.
Charminar Monument built in 1591, this is also a Mosque
The monument is located in the heart of old city and it is believed that Hyderabad was measured in four directions from Charminar for administrative purposes.
Anthony in his element! Market and street scenes
So many to choose from!
Dates, pineapples and bananas
Pomegranates and grapes
A quick stop at the Nizam Palace Museum to see all the beautiful silver and artefacts and then back to the hotel for a quick freshen up before dinner.
What a very interesting day it was, more places for your itinerary for Hyderabad.