Golconda Fort, Hyderabad

This fort was constructed on a hill which was once the territory of Kakatiya Kings of Warangal in 1143 A.D. During the Kingdom of Raja Pratap Rudra Dev, a shepherd sugggested to him the desirability of constructing a fort on this hill, the Raja welcomed this idea and constructed a "Kucha" bulwark calling it after the name of the shepherd "Golconda" (Golla means shepered and Konda means Hill, thus Shepherd's Hill), as the capital of the Rajas was Warangal. Raja Krishna Dev of Warangal handed over the fort to Mohammed Shah on of Bahmani dynasty under a pact Mohammed Shah called the fort Mohammadnagar. This name can be found in Governments record even today. Initial building wasn't as strong as we see today, its later when Sultan Mohd Quli Qutaub Shah (fifth King)  built it further to its fullest. He is also the founder of Mecca Masji Hyd and the Hyderabad city itself. Seven kings of Qutub Shahi dynasty ruled over Golconda and first three kings constructed the Golconda fort in a period of 62 years, the fifth king Mohd Quli Qutaub Shah laid a city Bhagnagar after the name of his beloved Bhagmati, it is the city which is now called Hyederabad.


I started off from Hitec City to Kondapur then to Golconda Road (45 mins by auto), from there we have direct auto to Golconda (15mins). The first pic above is taken just after the entrance gate. The right one here is from outside the fort boundry.

Ticket is around 10 Rs and soon after/near the entrance you will greeted with plenty of tour guides both locals and authorized one demanding Rs 250 (official rate) for showing the fort. Well I thought its more prudent to see around by myself, took pics and then google its history back home (but if you are with family/friends etc, its worth having the guide).


This is the entrance gate called "Balahissar", and opposite to this is a wall called "Curtain Wall" is built so that enemy don't get enough space in front to attack like using elephants etc to break the gate. This Balahissor gate has a oil hole from top through which they pour hot oil over the enemies entering the gate. Just after this gate is one notable construction, there is one particular square built on floor standing on which if you clap, the vibration generated through that propagates towards the top of the fort several feet away. Interestingly if you clap away from that square the vibration is not generated. 

You require 2-3 hours to look around the whole area, you start from your right side path, goes to the top to Baradari Place (General Assembly Hall) and came back from other side back to entrance gate. There are 360 steps (usually called Baradari Steps) which leads to this hall, I am not sure if this count is one sided or total from start to end (back to entrance)



This is Qutub Shahi Mosque. This is built by Sultan Ibrahim Qutub Shah and is believed to be very old construction in this fort. This lies on the way of Baradari Place (Assembly Hall). The steps will tire you up but then forts are all like this. There is one temple of Maa Durga (Hindu Goddess) past this tomb on right side. A fair is held every Ashsd month where pilgrims come here in thousands from twin cities of Hyderabad and Secundrabad. 
Also few steps away from this mosque on your left side (down stairs), there you will see a room where RamDas (Tahsildar of Bhadrachalam during the rule of Abul Hasan Tana Shah), he was a founder of Ram Mandir (Ram=> Hindu God, Mandir=>Temple) He was kept at this jail and one can find the hand drawn idols of Hindu Gods on walls inside. A great fare takes place at Bhadrachalam were pilgrims comes to see idols at the time of Ram Navami.

On the top of the fort is the Baradari Place. This is two storied building with open terrace on the top, where Qutub Shahi Kings used to enjoy the surrounding view of the country side. There is an audience hall and open space fo the erection of pandal. An opening is said to be the mouth of an underground secret passage to Goshamahal at the distance of 8 km was used by the Qutub Shahi Kings on occasions of emergency and danger.

On ground floor is the canteen with some refreshments.
Country side view from this place.





Each evening Admins organize a laser show in the downhall (ticket Rs 50), I didn't waited that long to see it but hope its worth watching as it will brief you the history of this fort in audible way. You can see the light equipments mounted on the walls.






Most of the fort walls are ruined now, where admins are trying to reconstruct some of them. We are now the other side of the steps and this side contains few other ruined palace and buildings where arms and ammunition were kept, security lines, water storage blocks etc. Body gaurd line is shown in the pic on right side which you will find while getting down from Baradari Place. Baradari Place is in top in the pic (right)




Passing this and the place where laser shows are held will lead you to Taramati Palace, in front of this building is big garden and a path which will lead you back to the entrance gate. There few others (in fact plenty) of buildings to see but then you know without guide you are on you own, as already burned out, I decided to head back. This is just on the entrance gate and right to this is from where you start and left to this is where you end up after seeing the fort.





See complete pics at  
http://www.flickr.com/photos/shekharstravel/sets/72157622759434640/


2 comments:

Srikanth

Great job Rajshekar. The photographs are superb and narrative is excellent.
It would have been better if you had given the distance, entry fees, etc to help tourists better.

Also, how about an article on Tirumala???

R Shekhar

Thanks for the comments. I will definitely additional thing like distance, fees etc in my upcoming trip blogs.

For Tirumala, I will post the same after the trip soon.

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