Hyderabad city tour   Leave a comment

I’m a bad guy, I skipped the last day of conference to go and see the indian city of Hyderabad. There is not much to see, but the city fort is worth to see. On the map, it appears close to our hotel, but indian cities are huge: after 45 scary minutes on the rickshaw, we reach the ancient fortified city, on the top of a hill, and finally the royal palace. This palace is famous for its acoustic properties, as our tour guide explains. There are arches which amplify the sound and make echoes, but only if you stand right in the middle. There are other arches with four pillars as in a square: if one person is standing at each pillar, can talk to the one at the opposite pillar without being heard by the two next to him. The most impressive acoustic wonder is that a hand clap at the entrance is perfectly heard on the other side of the fort: this was used as a telephone to tell to shut all the doors and load the cannons, in case an enemy was arriving.

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Rickshaw, its driver and Camilla The Golconda Fort

IMG_0214Then we decided to visit the Charminar, which is also close to the main bazaar (=market) of the city and to one of the biggest mosques in India. After a short walk in the bazaar, and the first real experience in bargaining for some bracelets, we realise it is not the best moment to visit the area. Basically, Hyderabad is the city with the highest percentage of muslim people, so the mosques are usually crowded. It’s also the period of ramadan, the muslim festival. In addition, it’s Friday, holiday for muslims. On the top of that, it’s 2 o’clock, so just after the end of the one-hour-long pray that starts at one. What we find is so many people that is difficult to walk. If you also consider that most of them are trying to sell us something, you are still far away from understanding the situation. Unless you have been to India. We decide to head to one of the few shops which look safe: it’s a jewelry. We are decided in buying some pearls (for which Hyderabad is famous), but the bargaining is not succesful and we go to the next shop. This time we leave with some stuff. Back in the street, the mess is still too much to stand, so we head back to the hotel to get ready for the night. This thime the rickshaw driver is really crazy, and the fact that we are driving through very narrow and poor streets doesn’t help us. But once again, safe at the hotel.

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The Charminar square Camilla bargaining for pearls
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Posted September 28, 2007 by mtcerio in Uncategorized

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