Destinations Ditch The Charminar & Explore These 3 Hidden Gems Of Hyderabad, Instead

Ditch The Charminar & Explore These 3 Hidden Gems Of Hyderabad, Instead

Here are three incredibly interesting hidden gems of Hyderabad that offer glimpses into the city’s rich history.


By Irfan Quader Published on Feb 16, 2021, 01:00 PM

Ditch The Charminar & Explore These 3 Hidden Gems Of Hyderabad, Instead
Photo Courtesy: Shutterstock

#DiscoverTheUndiscovered: Here are three hidden gems of Hyderabad that offer glimpses into the city’s rich history. By Irfan Quader

Hyderabad may be known for its pearls, Biryani, and the Charminar; but the city has more to offer. Here are three hidden gems of Hyderabad.

1. Hatiyan ka Jhad (elephant tree)


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Hatiyan ka Jhad is a massive tree tucked away in a corner of Naya Qila at Golconda Fort’s outer walls. Native to Africa, this ancient baobab is one of the few existing in India. They say it was planted by holy men from Africa 500 to 800 years ago. Today, the giant tree is still going strong, with its huge 25 metres segmented trunk. It also has a hollow space—supposedly a bandits’ hideout at one point—that can only be entered from the top. Although the trunk is surrounded by a fence to prevent vandals, security guards sometimes let people in.

Getting there

To reach Naya Qila and Hatiyan ka Jhad, turn left from the fort’s Banjara Darwaza gate, and follow the road till it curves right to reach Naya Qila Darwaza on the left. Enter the gate (tell the security guard you want to see the tree), turn right at the fork, and keep going until the path ends. The tree is on your left.

2. Fateh Rahbar Cannon


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Another hidden gem on the fort’s outer walls is a huge cannon called Fateh Rahbar (guide to victory). Believed to be 16-feet long and 16.5 tons in weight, the cannon is made of black-bronze alloy. It is intricately embossed with floral patterns and calligraphy. Supposedly used by Emperor Aurangzeb during his second siege of Golconda, the cannon even has dents made by cannonballs.

The cannon is mounted on the crumbling Petla Burj (belly-shaped bastion) far away from the fort’s usual sights. Besides the cannon, the bastion also offers great views of the Qutb Shahi tombs.

Getting there

To get to Petla Burj and Fateh Rahbar, enter through the fort’s Banjara Darwaza gate and keep going. Turn right at the T-junction, and continue till the road ends. Follow the path leading the wall, turn right at the fork, and continue till you get to the bastion.

3. Paigah Tombs


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Tucked away in the bylanes of the Old City, the Paigah Tombs are small but stunning remnants of the city’s past. The Paigah family were the foremost nobles under the ruling Nizams, and five generations of its more prominent members are buried here.

The architecture is a fusion of Persian, Rajasthani, Mughal, Deccani and even Greek elements. The tombs and their enclosures are intricately decorated with delicate stone, wood, and metal latticework on the walls and doors. In fact, the gravestone of Hussain un-Nissa here is said to be an exact replica of Mumtaz Mahal’s in the Taj Mahal.

Getting there

Finding the Paigah Tombs is tricky. Cross the river via Chaderghat bridge, turn left at the circle, take the flyover, and follow the main road. At the fork, turn right. At the large circle, turn right again onto Nagarjuna Sagar road. Take the fifth lane to the right, turn right at the fork, and, finally, take the third right to reach your destination.

Related: Revisiting Hyderabad: From The Land Of Nizams To The Startup Hub Of Today

Written By

Irfan Quader

Irfan Quader

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