Some places in our own cities only get visited/revisited when friends or relatives come over. The same happened to me last week and we went to the Golconda fort in the south-western outskirts of Hyderabad.
After a heavy breakfast of alu parathas, we reached the fort at 12 pm. Luckily, the day turned out to be cloudy.
Managing to avoid the guides offering to share the secrets of the fort with us, we entered the main gate. As we slowly began our climb towards the peak, we came across the magnificent view of the entire structure.
I always find forts mesmerizing. They seem to signify simple yet mysterious times, when hiding behind huge walls on a mountain protected you from the enemy. Even if the enemy was successful in entering, you could always escape through the various secret routes.
Some background – built nearly a millennium ago on a circular shaped granite rock, this fort changed hands multiple times starting with the Kakatiya dynasty and ending with the Nizam. The Qutb Shahi kings expanded the fort to its current size.
Many famous diamonds are linked to this fort, especially the Kohinoor.
For those interested in historical engineering marvels, there are 3 to be noted:
- You clap under a dome at the main gate and someone can hear it at the top-most point. This mechanism alerted the royals about an attack.
- The building at the peak is built in a way that you feel air conditioned. (Not for us, but for the kings who stayed there.)
- Water was provided at all levels of fort through a complex supply system.
We roamed the fort for 2 hours. Sadly, many parts seem poorly maintained. Also, there are so many love inscriptions on the walls, that instead of feeling the love of those lovers, we feel the pain of the monuments.
Even though it was a Thursday, there were many tourists, ‘selfie-ing’ away. There were a few romantic couples too, who probably couldn’t find solitude in their homes and had to climb the fort to find some. 🙂
The view from the top is actually breath-taking. On one side are the new glass buildings of the IT industry near the ORR, and on the other the congested ones of Mehdipatnam and Tolichowki.
There is supposed to be an underground tunnel which connects the Golkonda fort to the Charminar, roughly 15 kms away. But I wouldn’t suggest you trying it, looking at the condition of the fort. 🙂
Reaching the gate once again, we headed back to the city and modern times.