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Charminar: The Arc de Triomphe of the East - Features

Charminar: The Arc de Triomphe of the East

Charminar:  The Arc de Triomphe of the East Located in the Old City on the east bank of the Musi River, the Charminar is the most famous historical landmark in Hyderabad. The monument’s four fluted minarets built into the main structure have become a synonym for the city, much like ‘Eiffel Tower’ and ‘Big Ben’ are for Paris and London, respectively.

The English name is a translation and combination of the Urdu words chār and minar or meenar, meaning ‘Four Pillars’; the eponymous towers are ornate minarets connected and supported by four massive arches. It is listed as an archaeological and architectural treasure on the official ‘List of Monuments’ compiled by the Archaeological Survey of India. It has been added to the ‘tentative list’ of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in its current state.

Genesis and Relevance
Since its construction by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah of the Golkonda dynasty in 1591 AD, the Charminar has been a symbol of Hyderabad’s culture, standing as a reminder of the glorious days of the past era. It is a massive structure with four minarets on each of its four sides, which many consider to represent the first four ‘khalifas’ (prophets) of Islam.

Majestic Architecture
The Charminar is an exemplary structure of Indo-Islamic architecture with Persian influences. The arches and domes of the monument are indicative of Islamic architecture, while the minarets reveal the Persian influence. The balconies and exterior walls are adorned with delicate stucco floral ornaments on the ceiling, demonstrating the Hindu architectural influence.

Other Activities
The area surrounding the Charminar is also known by the same name and is home to the city’s most popular market. It is famous for its bangles, pearls, jewelry, semi-precious stones, silverware, Kalamkari paintings, sarees, silk fabrics, gold-embroidered fabrics, lacquered bangles, ittars, and traditional Khara dupattas. The area is also renowned for its traditional and delectable food items, which is the pride of Hyderabadi cuisine.

Visitors are Welcome
Visitor hours end at 5:30 PM, but the illuminated Charminar from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM is mesmerizing. It is situated 5 kilometers from the Hyderabad Bus Station. APSRTC (Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation) operates regular buses from every part of the city. Auto rickshaws and taxis are also an option. It takes around an hour to drive from the HITEX Exhibition Center via NH44, Sant Sri Keshava Swamy Maharaj Marg, or NH65. Additionally, buses are accessible from Hitex-Hitech City and Kondapur.

Distance from HITEX
22 Km
Travel Time
45-55 min
Time of Visit
9:00 AM - 5:30 PM