Golconda: The Fort that Stands Aloof!

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After half an hour’s drive, we stood in awe in front of the medieval marvel, which withstood the foray of humans and natural elements for centuries. This mud fort located on a granite hill and was the alcazar of the Qutab Shahi dynasty and the earlier reigns of the Yadavas and Kakatiyas. The Golconda Fort is a mini city in itself and even today after almost 800 years it still stands as one of the Hyderabad’s greatest architectural wonders, a testimony to its glorious past. It was once prominent for its flourishing trade in diamonds and now a legend of the past. As we entered the inner donjon through the outermost enclosure called the Fateh Darwaza (victory gate), the first thing we encountered was the amused visitors experimenting with the eerie acoustics, by clapping their hands under the dome entrance, which reverberates almost 1 km away clearly at the hilltop pavilion “Balahisar”. Sailasree takes us through the mystery of Golconda Fort, in the regular column, exclusively for Different Truths.

I am one of those who is mesmerised by the stories of love, valor, and treachery, which project the beauty and the hidden mystery of our history. The Golconda Fort is a living example of the same. Out of the countless New Year resolutions that I made, I am trying to stick to the one that gives me immense happiness i.e. to explore and travel.

My friend had been persistent in his efforts to convince me to accompany him to visit the Golconda fort. I had to give in one fine day as I had a day off from my work. I decided to join my friend in exploring this architectural pride of Hyderabad located in Telangana, India. We set out by a cab that afternoon as we planned to see the musical light show late in the evening. We did not confront any heavy traffic on our way and to add to it, I had the company of my crazy friend who shared the same passion for travelling and exploring. With a good friend for company and a treasure trove of history to look forward too, what more can I ask for?

After half an hour’s drive, I stood in awe in front of the medieval marvel, which withstood the foray of humans and natural elements for centuries. This mud fort located on a granite hill and was the alcazar of the Qutab Shahi dynasty and the earlier reigns of the Yadavas and Kakatiyas.

The Golconda Fort is a mini city in itself and even today after almost 800 years it still stands as one of the Hyderabad’s greatest architectural wonders, a testimony to its glorious past. It was once prominent for its flourishing trade in diamonds and now a legend of the past.

As we entered the inner donjon through the outermost enclosure called the Fateh Darwaza (victory gate), the first thing we encountered was the amused visitors experimenting with the eerie acoustics, by clapping their hands under the dome entrance which reverberates almost 1 km away clearly at the hilltop pavilion “Balahisar”. I was flabbergasted by the advanced technology and engineering which the fort portrayed. I could visualise the soldiers using this astonishing acoustics to alert the troops garrisoned in the fortress….Hats off to the wireless technology of those days!

Once inside the citadel gate, walking paths lead us through gardens, minor buildings, dungeons, mosques, temples, archways, halls, domes, rooms and walls which projected the perfect fusion of Hindu and Islamic architectural styles. We were wonderstruck by the intricacies of the construction. The other buildings found inside the fort were Habshi Kamans, Ashlah Khana, Taramati mosque, camel stable, private chambers, mortuary bath, Nangina bagh, Ramadas kotha, Darbur hall, Ambar khana, etc.

As we walked among the ruins, we had chilling thoughts about the people and the incidents that made history right here. Right now, we were walking the same pathways where once the armored soldiers would have patrolled, or may be the royalty would have taken walks. We could not help but imagine the scenes of the glorious period of the fort.

We were excited to race to the top of the pavilion “Baladari” to test our physical endurance by threading around 380 stairs to unravel the history part by part. Off course! I didn’t win the race. So, I had to treat my friend to some refreshments available at the top, which was the need of the hour as the climb was very exhausting and the refreshments welcoming/rejuvenating. Following some steep and narrow stairways the view opens to the terrace of . This is the highest point of the fort. All the physical work was worth it!! The 360-degree view of the city was breathtaking and the sunset added drama to the panoramic view. This was my Kodak moment and I would cherish it forever. The skyline of the city was in sheer contrast with the fort, a convergence of the past and the present which was astounding.

We strolled around the fort’s grounds exploring the ruins, stone arches and tried to cover every nook and corner of the fort. It’s disheartening to see many portions of the fort in need of some urgent repair, while some walls had collapsed and some portions were inaccessible.

It was getting dark and we did not want to miss out on the sound and light show, which was scheduled at 6.30. During the sound and light show, one can see the transformation of the fortress into a stage as stories are told by famous Indian artistes highlighting its glorious past. How I wish the bricks of the fort could tell their own saga…..every brick would have its own tale to narrate. Looking at this splendid structure lit in the night under the blanket of stars was an unforgettable moment that left me amazed.

Taramati mosque lit in the night

It was an adventure of a kind and my memorable rendezvous with history. Before exiting, I looked up at the majestic façade that humbled me, the architecture that astonished me and the archeological edifice that unfolded over centuries of splendor.

©Sailasree Potay

Photos by the author.

#Travelogue #GolcondaFort #QutubShahiDynesty #Diamons #Hydrabad #HydrabadTouristPlace #DifferentTruths

Sailasree Potay is an educationist. She loves travelling and adventure with friends. Loves to read and meet people to understand their struggles and successes, which she truly cherishes. It helps her to better herself. Above all blessed to be a woman, a mother of two loving children and a partner to a loving man, who dares to show her the mirror.