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Things to do in Charminar-  A complete travel guide

Explore the Charminar: A Glimpse into India’s Rich Heritage Charminar symbolizes India’s rich cultural history with its intricate…
Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Explore the Charminar: A Glimpse into India’s Rich Heritage

Charminar symbolizes India’s rich cultural history with its intricate carvings and towering minarets. This historic monument in Hyderabad captures the essence of the old city and its charm. While modern development surrounds it, Charminar offers a window into the past.

Renting a car is a convenient and comfortable option to experience Charminar and other historical sites in Hyderabad fully. This way, you can easily explore the city’s wonders at your own pace. Visit Charminar and see why its detailed architecture and four majestic minarets attract visitors from around the world.

About Charminar

Discover the Charminar: Hyderabad’s Historic Gem

Built-in 1591 by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, the fifth ruler of the Qutb Shahi dynasty, Charminar is an iconic monument in Hyderabad. It features four minarets, each standing 56 meters (184 feet) tall, with intricate carvings and stucco work that reflect its historical era. From the top of these minarets, you can enjoy stunning city views. Surrounding Charminar is a lively market famous for its bangles and traditional items, adding to the charm of this historic site.

History about Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

The Story Behind Charminar: Hyderabad’s Iconic Monument

Many historic structures have strong reasons behind their creation. Charminar is no different. In the late 16th century, Hyderabad faced a devastating plague epidemic. Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, the ruler of Hyderabad, prayed for the end of the plague and vowed to build a monument if his prayers were answered. When the plague ended, he built Charminar in 1591 in the heart of the old city.

Today, Charminar is an iconic symbol of Hyderabad, reflecting the city’s rich culture and heritage. Its stunning architecture and the bustling market around it draw thousands of tourists from all over the world.

Architecture of Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Charminar: A Masterpiece of Qutb Shahi Architecture

The Qutb Shahi style blends Persian and Indian architectural styles, and Charminar is its finest example. Built with granite and lime mortar, common materials for monuments at the time, Charminar features four 56-meter tall minarets and a square base measuring 20 meters on each side. It also has four ornamental arches facing east, west, north, and south. These arches are 11 meters wide and 20 meters high, with gates that open into a courtyard.

  • East Gate: Known as Kali Kaman, or the Black Gate, this entrance was used by the Royal Family.
  • West Gate: This was called the Makkah Gate because it opened towards the holy city of Mecca.
  • North Gate: This led to the mosque located on the top floor of the Charminar.
  • South Gate: This led to Char Kaman, a junction of four roads.

The artisans who worked on Charminar displayed remarkable skill, evident in the intricate carvings and stucco work adorning the minarets. These features include geometric patterns, calligraphy, and floral designs.

Beyond its aesthetic appeal, Charminar is also an impressive engineering feat. The minarets serve as ventilation shafts, aiding air circulation within the monument. Additionally, it boasts functional drainage and water supply systems.

Facts about Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Discover Some Fascinating Facts About Charminar:

  • The four minarets’ names are inspired by the first four Khalifs of Islam: Ali, Hasan, Hussain, and Muawiya.
  • At the top of Charminar, a mosque is reached by climbing 149 winding steps.
  • In addition to Indo-Islamic and Persian styles, Charminar also incorporates influences from South Indian architectural styles.
  • Legend has it that Charminar was built in just one year, with over a thousand workers laboring day and night.
  • The Charminar market, dating back to the Qutb Shahi era, is the oldest in Hyderabad.

According to local stories, Charminar is said to have a secret underground tunnel leading to Golconda Fort. However, its existence has not been confirmed, as it remains a legend.

Comprehensive guide to cover Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Visiting Charminar lets you soak in Hyderabad’s vibrant culture. Explore the bustling Charminar market, savor local delicacies, and discover other historical landmarks. Wrap up your day with a peaceful walk along the Musi River for a fulfilling experience.

Things to do in Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Here’s a brief guide to help you make the most of your visit to Charminar:

  • Architecture and Design: When you arrive at Charminar, you’ll first notice its distinctive architectural style. It combines Indian, Islamic, and Persian influences, typical of structures from its time. Take a moment to admire the detailed designs and carvings on the arches, bases, and minarets from the outside.
  • Staircase: Once you’ve explored the monument from outside, enter through the central arch and ascend the winding staircase. This architectural marvel includes 149 steps that lead to the mosque at the top, offering panoramic views of the city.
  • Mosque: At the top of the monument is a small square structure. The walls and ceilings are adorned inside the mosque with detailed stucco work, floral patterns, and calligraphy. The intricate carvings showcase the artisans’ skill. The Arabic calligraphy includes verses from the Quran and other religious texts and phrases, adding to its cultural significance.
  • Clock: Originally, Charminar did not have clocks. In the early 20th century, the Nizams of Hyderabad installed clocks on each minaret. Crafted by an English clockmaker, these clocks are now integral to Charminar’s distinctive appeal and historical charm.
  • Charminar Bazaar: If India is known for its bustling markets, then Charminar Bazaar exemplifies this spirit. Also called Choodi Bazaar or Laad Bazaar, it’s famous for shopping bangles, jewelry, and more. With narrow lanes, vibrant shops, bargaining customers, and a lively ambiance, it embodies the quintessential Indian bazaar experience.
  • Food: Hyderabad’s cuisine blends Turkish, Mughal, and Telugu flavors. A food tour around Charminar is necessary to savor various dishes and delight your taste buds.

Places to visit near Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Charminar ranks among India’s top tourist destinations, offering diverse experiences like historical monuments, shopping, wildlife, and delightful local cuisine. Here are some must-visit places in Charminar:

1. Qutub Shahi Tombs: Located one kilometer north of Golconda Fort and about nine kilometers from Charminar, the Qutub Shahi Tombs are among Hyderabad’s oldest monuments. These magnificent mausoleums house the tombs of the Golconda rulers, featuring impressive architecture and beautiful gardens. You can reach the tombs from Charminar by bus or taxi. The entry fee is Rs.10 for adults, Rs.5 for children, and Rs.20 for a still camera.

2. Mecca Masjid: One of India’s largest mosques, Mecca Masjid can accommodate about 10,000 people. Renowned for its architecture and housing relics, the central arch’s bricks were crafted from Mecca’s soil, hence its name. It’s conveniently located near Charminar and has no entry fee.

3. Chowmahalla Palace:  Chowmahalla Palace, constructed about 200 years ago, reflects the grandeur of the Nizam era and is reminiscent of the Shah Palace in Tehran, Iran. It is open from 10 am to 5 pm every day except Fridays. The palace is a short 10-minute walk from Charminar. Entry fees are Rs.50 for Indian adults, Rs.10 for Indian children below 12 years, Rs.200 for foreign tourists, Rs.50 for still cameras, and Rs.100 for video cameras.

4. Nehru Zoological Park: Nehru Zoological Park, sprawling across 380 acres and home to over 1500 species of birds, reptiles, and mammals, is near the historic Mir Alam Tank, one of the world’s oldest masonry dams. It’s approximately 5 km from Charminar, accessible by bus or cab in 15-20 minutes. Entry fees are as follows:

  • Weekdays: The entry fees are Rs.60 for adults, Rs.40 for children aged 3-10 years, Rs.120 for a still camera, and Rs.600 for a video camera.
  • Weekends and Holidays: The entry fees are Rs.75 for adults, Rs.50 for children aged 3-10 years, Rs.120 for a still camera, and Rs.600 for a video camera.
  • Toy Train: The entry fee is Rs.20 for adults and Rs.10 for children under 10.
  • Lion and Tiger Safari: The entry fee is Rs.50 for adults and Rs.30 for children under 10.
  • Buggy or Battery Operated Vehicle: The entry fee is Rs.60 for adults and Rs.40 for children under 10.
  • Fish Aquarium: The entry fee is Rs.10 per person.
  • Nocturnal Animal House: The entry fee is Rs.20 for adults and Rs.10 for children under 10.
  • Film Shooting: The charges are Rs.8,500 per day for shooting, Rs.1,500 per day for generator trucks, and Rs.1,000 per day for a car or jeep.

How to plan a trip to Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Visiting Charminar is a must for history and architecture enthusiasts. Hyderabad offers a wealth of cultural and historical experiences around this iconic monument. It’s wise to plan your trip, especially because Charminar attracts many tourists, particularly on weekends and holidays. Opting for a weekday visit and avoiding Fridays and evenings can help avoid crowds. Check the weather beforehand and dress accordingly for a comfortable experience.

How to reach Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

By Train

The nearest railway station to Charminar is Hyderabad Deccan Railway Station (HYB), also known as Nampally Railway Station. It’s about 5-6 km away from the monument. You can easily reach Charminar in about 20 minutes by taxi from HYB. The station offers direct connections to major cities across India, with daily train services. It’s advisable to check the train schedule, as availability may vary depending on the season.

By Road

Charminar is situated in Hyderabad and is accessible from various parts of India via well-connected roads and highways. You can reach the monument by taking NH44, which links major cities nationwide. It’s approximately 5 km from Hyderabad city center. If traveling from Bangalore to Charminar by road, NH44 provides a route that takes about 9-10 hours. You can hire a taxi from Savaari in Hyderabad and enjoy the scenic landscapes of Karnataka and Telangana.

By Flight

The nearest airport to Charminar is Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Shamshabad, Hyderabad, located about 18 km away from the monument. You can easily travel from the airport to Charminar by hiring a taxi, which takes approximately 40-45 minutes. The airport offers connections to major cities across India and several international destinations, making it easily accessible for travelers.

The best time to visit Charminar

Summers in Hyderabad are extremely hot, making outdoor activities challenging. Monsoons can be unpredictable, adding to the difficulty of planning trips. Therefore, the best time to visit Charminar is between October and March. The weather is pleasant during these months, with temperatures below 30 degrees Celsius. It’s an ideal time to explore the city and its vibrant bazaars without the discomfort of extreme heat.

Travel tips for visiting Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

If you plan to visit and explore Charminar and its surroundings, our travel tips will offer valuable information to ensure your visit is enjoyable and memorable.

  • Plan your visit early in the morning for a peaceful and crowd-free experience at Charminar. The mosque and surroundings will be calm and serene.
  • In Hyderabad, the Bonalu festival, dedicated to Goddess Mahakali, is celebrated annually from July to August. The entire area is adorned with decorations, and the vibrant festivities provide visitors with a unique and exciting experience. It’s worth planning your visit to Charminar during this period to join in these lively celebrations.
  • Charminar and its neighboring monuments are steeped in rich history and fascinating stories. While you can read about them beforehand, hiring a local guide is wise. Ensure the guide is registered and well-informed for a more insightful tour.
  • Don’t forget to try the renowned Hyderabadi Biryani and Irani Chai at the nearby eateries near Charminar. Explore the food choices available and discover the city’s diverse flavors.
  • Be cautious of pickpockets when walking or shopping at Charminar Bazaar. Some thieves exploit the crowds to steal valuables from tourists.
  • If renting a local auto rickshaw, compare rates and pay accordingly. Alternatively, consider hiring a cab from Savaari for competitive rates.
  • Elderly individuals or those with joint issues may find climbing the narrow, steep stairs leading to the mosque challenging.
  • There is no car parking available.

Charminar timings and entry fee

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Charminar is open to tourists every day from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm.

The entry fee is Rs.5 per person for Indian nationals and Rs.100 per person for foreigners.

Hotels and restaurants near Charminar

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide

Here’s a quick overview of accommodation options near Charminar, including resorts and hotels.

Hotel NameAddressContact Number
Hotel Tara International15-2-399, Siddiamber Bazar Rd, Siddiamber Bazar, Kishan Gunj, Jam Bagh, Hyderabad+91 40 6673 5573
Hotel Rajdhani15-1-503, Siddiamber Bazar Rd, Siddiamber Bazar, Begum Bazar, Feelkhana, Hyderabad+91 40 2474 0650
FabHotel TanishaD.No, 8-3-945/A/6/1, Srinagar Colony Main Rd, Nagarjuna Nagar colony, Ameerpet, Hyderabad70424 24242
Treebo Trend Destination Inn20, 6-3-349, Alpha Business Centre, lower ground floor Nagarjuna Circle, 2A, Rd Number 1, Banjara Hills, Hyderabad93228 00100
Hotel Haridwar4-6-464 Esamia Bazar, Koti Near Womens College, Hyderabad (Sultan Bazar)+91 40 2465 6711

Why visiting Charminar should be on your next travel list

Explore Charminar’s intricate carvings, towering minarets, and rich cultural heritage for a unique and captivating experience. For a hassle-free visit, consider using the Savaari car rental app. Booking a Savaari taxi is simple and ensures a comfortable journey to Charminar and nearby attractions. Plan your trip to travel at your own pace and fully immerse yourself in exploring the surroundings.

Things To Do In Charminar-  A Complete Travel Guide


Charminar, with its majestic architecture and rich historical significance, offers many experiences for travelers. From exploring its intricate carvings and minarets to indulging in the vibrant bazaars and savoring local delicacies, there’s something for everyone. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a food lover, or simply seeking cultural immersion, Charminar won’t disappoint.

To make the most of your visit, consider starting early to avoid crowds and experience the serene atmosphere of the mosque. Hiring a knowledgeable local guide can provide deeper insights into the monument’s stories and history. Don’t miss out on tasting the famous Hyderabadi Biryani and Irani Chai at the nearby eateries, and explore the bustling markets for traditional souvenirs.

Plan your visit between October and March for pleasant weather, which is ideal for exploring the city and its surroundings. Whether you’re captivated by architecture, history, or local culture, Charminar promises an unforgettable journey through India’s cultural heritage.


Q1: When is the best time to visit Charminar?

Ans: The best time to visit Charminar is between October and March, when the weather is pleasant and suitable for exploring the monument and its surroundings.

Q2: What are the entry fees for visiting Charminar?

Ans: Entry fees are Rs.5 per person for Indian nationals and Rs.100 per person for foreigners.

Q3: Are there any accommodation options near Charminar?

Ans: Yes, there are resorts and hotels located near Charminar that offer convenient stays for visitors.

Q4: What are the nearby attractions to explore besides Charminar?

Ans: Nearby attractions include Mecca Masjid, Laad Bazaar, Chowmahalla Palace, and the Salar Jung Museum, offering a rich blend of history, culture, and architecture.

Q5: How can I reach Charminar from Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Airport?

Ans: Depending on traffic conditions, you can reach Charminar from the airport by hiring a taxi, which takes approximately 40-45 minutes.

Q6: What should I be cautious of when visiting Charminar?

Ans: Be cautious of pickpockets in crowded areas, especially around Charminar Bazaar. It’s advisable to keep your belongings secure.

Ans: Hiring a registered and knowledgeable local guide can enhance your experience by providing insights into the monument’s history and significance.

Q8: What are some must-try local foods near Charminar?

Ans: Don’t miss trying Hyderabadi Biryani and Irani Chai at the local eateries near Charminar. These dishes offer authentic regional flavors.

Q9: What are Charminar’s visiting hours?

Ans: Charminar is open to tourists daily from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm, allowing ample time to explore its architecture and surroundings.

Q10: Is it possible to climb to the top of Charminar?

Ans: Yes, visitors can climb the narrow and steep stairs to reach the top of Charminar, offering panoramic views of Hyderabad.

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