Charminar is probably the most distinguished icon in the city of Hyderabad. The word Charminar is derived from two words char (four in Urdu) and minar (tower in Urdu). Charminar basically means four towers.
Location: Near Telephone Exchange, Pathergatti Road, Hyderabad
Timings: 9.30 AM to 5.30 PM, Open all days
Entry fee: Rs 15 for Indians, Rs 200 for foreigners. Free below 15 years.
Camera fee: Rs 25
It situated in the middle of a present road and the way leading to it for very busy. Both sides of the road are packed with shops and even the footpath are packed with vendors or hawkers doing business. There is a police station besides Charminar. One word of caution, do not be tempted to park your vehicle there. I saw policemen and women shouting to remove the vehicles or they will be fined. One can do shopping for ethnic Indian items like bangles etc.
I was there in the late afternoon. After getting my entry ticket, climbed few steps to reach the elevated plain on which Charminar is situated. The large doors are nicely designed in persian style. The dome located at the middle of the four towers has windows to view from top. At the center below the dome is a fountain. Then I climbed through one of the towers to reach the top. From here one can get a bird’s eye view of the area. From here I could see one of the four doorways of Char Kaman clearly. Char Kaman is a structure of wall and four majestic gateways besides Charminar. We went through one of the gateways to reach the Charminar. From the other side I could see the famed Makkah masjid or Jama masjid. It is the first royal mosque built by the then ruler Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah in 1598. I suggest to visit Charminar in the evening to enjoy the view in another hue altogether.
Charminar was built by Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah in 1591. It is said the sultan’s capital city was ravaged by plague. He prayed to god, that his city be cured of plague and he will build a mosque exactly where he prayed.