The Stunning Charminar in Hyderabad, India

Known as the ‘Arc de Triomphe of the East’, Charminar in Hyderabad, India, stands as a testament to the city’s history and architectural splendour. This iconic monument is not just a physical structure but a symbol of Hyderabad’s rich heritage as well and here’s more on what you need to know before a visit.


Charminar rises above the cityscape in the heart of the city making it easy to access. Travellers can take a taxi here from properties like Oakwood Residence Kapil Hyderabad or other well-placed pet-friendly hotels near Hyderabad. Alternatively, one can catch a bus to the stop at nearby Makkah Masjid or take a train to the Hyderabad Deccan Railway Station which is around 4 km away.

This site is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. throughout the week, though look to avoid Fridays due to there being more crowds since it’s a prayer day for Muslims.

A Bit of History

Completed in 1591 under the patronage of Muḥammad Quli Quṭb Shah during the Quṭb Shahi Dynasty, Charminar (or “Four Minarets”) has a fascinating origin story; interestingly, there are varied accounts as to the purpose of its creation.

Some believe it was constructed to commemorate the end of a deadly plague that ravaged the city and give thanks to Allah; however, others speculate that it served to honour Bhagmati, his wife or was built to celebrate the beginning of the second Islamic millennium. Regardless of its origin, Charminar has stood the test of time, witnessing centuries of history unfold before its majestic arches.

Distinctive Architecture

Charminar Hyderabad – Image via Flickr

A key allure of this attraction in Hyderabad made with limestone, mortar, marble, and granite, lies in its Indo-Saracenic style, a fusion of Indian and Islamic architectural elements. Its four grand arches, towering minarets, and elaborate stucco that adorn the exterior create a visual spectacle that will mesmerise visitors be it the day or when lit up at night.

Ascend to the top floor, where an ancient mosque (the oldest in the city) awaits, offering a serene space for reflection and prayer. From here, you can also take in panoramic views of Hyderabad, a sight that encapsulates the city’s past and present.

Nearby Attractions

Charminar’s appeal extends beyond its elegant structure and amongst the best things to do in Hyderabad is to also explore the area that surrounds this monument. Ensure you visit the Laad Bazaar, a bustling market where you will find traditional crafts, jewellery, spices, perfumes, and delicious street food.

Also within easy reach is Makkah Masjid, a grand mosque which showcases stunning architecture and is a place of spiritual significance. Additionally, Char Kaman, a series of four arches, adds to the historical charm of the area and serves as a captivating backdrop for photographs.