Once upon a time pearl traders used to spread their wares by the roadside and hawk them the way you'd find green vegetables peddled today. The city has gotten a lot more tech-savvy since then, but it still retains quite a bit of the charm of the Shahi and the Nawabi days.
While you find a younger crowd that is at once cosmo and geeky, you also find a lot of the old world aura about it. Fondly called the 'city of Nawabs' Hyderabad offers a captivating combination of tradition and trend to tourists and travellers.
The fifth largest metropolis of India, state capital of Andhra Pradesh, known for its rich history and culture with monuments, mosques, temples, a rich and varied heritage in arts, crafts and dance. With a 400-year history, Hyderabad and its twin city Secunderabad are a heady mixture of heritage, traditional hospitality and a thriving software revolution - revolution that has already attracted Microsoft to set its only overseas base here.
Hyderabad is famous world over for its fabulous diamond and pearl markets, glass embedded bangles and the delectable cuisine such as their Hyderbadi biriyani.
Some must-see tourist visits include Lad Bazar, Charminar, Golconda Fort, Hussain Sagar Lake, Salar Jung Museum, Ramoji Film City, Mecca Masjid, Birla Mandir, Nehru Zoological Park, Qutb Shahi Tombs, Church of Our Lady of Health, Holy Trinity Church and the Spanish Mosque.
Getting to Hyderabad
If you are travelling by air, you will arrive at the Rajiv Gandhi airport, Begumpet. The airport is centrally located, being within easy reach of both Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
If you are travelling by train, you will alight at one of the following railway stations: Secunderabad, Hyderabad (at Nampally), Begumpet or Kachiguda. If you arrive by long distance bus, you will alight at the Jubilee Bus Station, Secunderabad, or at the Hyderabad Bus Terminal at Gowliguda. Buses are actually pretty flexible and stop at quite a few places along the way.
If you are travelling by local transport: At the airport, you can hire prepaid taxis, private cars or auto-rickshaws. If you have room reservations at one of the bigger hotels, they will send transport to collect you. But if nobody is coming to receive you, and if you look new to town, there are a whole lot of chaps out there who would try to rip you off. And if you are a foreigner (or basically look like one), they'll just pounce on you! The general impression is that you are pretty gullible and loaded and can pay 10 times the actual fare, if not more.