In this list, we take you through a step-by-step guide of everything you must experience if you are in the city of pearls. From food places to things you should do, the list has all the must do things in Hyderabad. Read on and hey, make sure the list is more than just a bookmark on your internet browser.
1. Have Biryani at Café Bahaar
How can one be in Hyderabad and not have Biryani? It is quintessential for every Hyderabadi to dig into the piping hot biryani at café Bahaar, Basheerbagh or you run the risk of losing your Hyderabadi citizenship. (No, really)
2. Chai, Samosa and art at Lamakaan
Lamakaan, the open cultural space in Banjara Hills has become THE center for any sort of art form in the city. With regular plays, auditions and comedy events happening every day, this is a must visit for every Hyderabadi. And while you are there mesmerized in art, do not forget to take a sip of their delicious Orissa-style chai and their delicious yet tiny samosas.
3. Take a heritage walk
If you’re tired of walking in the dense urban forest of the city and want to take a walk that’s more than just from your couch to your fridge, Heritage walks are where you should be. A group named Hyderabad trails takes a few people every weekend for a walk through Hyderabad’s heritage sites while one person narrates the important events that took place there in the past.
4. Watch a movie on the IMAX big screen
In other cities, when they say big screen, it just means a movie theater. But in Hyderabad when we say the big screen, we mean it is the BIG screen. There is no better joy for movie lovers to put on those 3D glasses and watch a film in one of the largest screen in the country, that too on IMAX projection.
5. Spend an evening at Falaknuma Palace
If your pockets are very deep and if being a king (or something like that) is on your priority list, Falaknuma Palace is the place to be. Right from the Tonga ride at the entry to the royal interior decors and service, this palace stays true to its name.
6. Get closer to Buddha
No this doesn’t mean go to a monastery and meditate. We mean get closer to Buddha, literally. Take the boat from Lumbini park to the little man-made island in the middle of Hussain Sagar and say hi to the founder of Buddhism. Note: It smells funny out there.
7. Go shopping at Laad Bazar
Your girlfriend likes shopping and you are tired of sitting on those mall benches? Do something different, take here to Laad Bazar in Old city. While it would be something different for the both of you’ll, there will be no hole in your pocket when you get back home. How good is that for a deal?
8. Top floor, Birla temple
Although most of us Hyderabadis go to Birla temple only when we have relatives visiting us from other cities, there is no denying that the view from the top is breath-taking. This place is Hyderabad’s finest sun set viewing point but it comes at the cost of possibly losing your footwear.
9. Sunrise at Osmansagar
Osmansagar, the place we know from newspapers when the rains fail, is the city’s main water reservoir. And apart from giving us all drinking water, the place also gives those willing to travel till there a breath-taking view of the sunrise.
10. Late-night shawarma at Tolichowki
Meat cravings at 2 am? No problem, Hyderabad’s got it covered. Just hop on your bike and ride out to Tolichowki to dig into the Arabian delight called Shawarma. At a modest 70 bucks, there shawarma is available in chicken, mutton and ahem *Banned*.
11. Late night chai at Prince Hotel
Someone once said there is no bad time for some good chai and that someone also happens to be the author of this article. Located in Mehdipatnam, Prince Hotel shuts down at 11 pm officially but carries on the noble work of serving tea to people through its back door through the night.
12. Go-karting at the airport
Not really a late night food hunter? How about some go-karting at the airport. Open till around 3 am, the go-kart track at the RGIA is one of the top things you need to do as a Hyderabadi. This comes with an added perk of the long drive to the airport, unless you fell for one of those advertisements that sold houses with a tagline ‘just 10 minutes away from the airport’.
13. Visit Charminar on a Friday
We know it sounds like a stereotypical tourist thing to do, but there is no better sight in the city than Charminar and its neighbor Mecca Masjid in full flow during the Friday evening prayers.
14. Go trekking at Narsapur
Located just 40 odd kilometers from the city, the Narsapur forest reserve is a must-visit for every Hyderabadi. Populated by an extra ordinary number of monkeys and a road that goes through (almost) dense forest, you can park your bike and head off on a random trail.
15. Go clubbing at Klub Trinity
Even though the name sounds like a spelling mistake, we can assure you there is no better place to go clubbing in Hyderabad than Klub Trinity. Strict dress codes, cream of the city and top ratings, all these things just point to one thing – let’s go PARTYY!!
16. Check out the music show at Golconda
There is nothing special about the Golconda fort to a Hyderabadi. But that is only until you realize there is pretty cool musical show every evening there which most of us haven’t heard of. It is a must-visit for every Hyderabadi and while you are at it, carry some mosquito repellant with you.
17. Check out the deer park
One of the most under-rated places of the city, the Mahavir Harina Vanasthali Deer park is a delight to visit. Located very close to Vanasthalipuram, it is the largest green lung space in the city and makes for a great outing.
18. Adventure sports at Deccan Trails
At the edge of the Anathagiri Hills in Vikarabad, Deccan Trails is one hell of a adventure theme resort. The entire set up is eco friendly with tents for rooms, no plastic in the vicinity, bio degradable toilets, lots of adventure sports and a night trek. This place should be on the top of your to-do list if you’re an adventurist.
19. Karaoke nights at 10D
We all have a bathroom singer in us. And most of the times this bathroom singer emerges when a few shots of alcohol go in. 10 D knows this and offers that inside bathroom singer of yours a platform to sing until …. 11.30 pm. Because that’s when the cops come and shut the place down.
20. A visit to the planetarium
No matter how old we grow, there is one thing that always will keep fascinating us, space. And a visit to the planetarium is the closest we come to getting an informative yet intriguing experience of what might be up there, unless we have relatives working in NASA.
21. Rock climbing at Khajaguda
Located close to Lanco Hills, this is the place to be for rock climbing enthusiasts. Although you won’t scale the peaks of Everest here, it is a fun activity and organizations like Greater Hyderabad Adventure Club (GHAC) make sure it’s a smooth ride.
22. Kayaking at Hussain Sagar
If smells isn’t something that bothers you, Kayaking at Hussain Sagar is something you should experience for sure. Organized by the Boats Club, this is your one stop shop for anything related to kayaking at Hussain Sagar.
23. Talk in Hyderabadi Hindi at Old city
There are few languages in the world that can match the swagger of Hyderabadi Hindi and there is no better joy than dropping it on the locals in the old city and making them believe you’re one of their own.
24. Experience the art at Gallery Café
Located in Banjara Hills, the café is exactly what the name suggests it is. A café which has a gallery attached to it. The place is a perfect ‘blend’ of good coffee and fine paintings and also has regular art related events almost every day.
25. Romancing at Necklace Road
Necklace road is a hotbed for love birds. Love is in the air every evening as couples from almost everywhere are found chilling in the cool evening breeze with arms around each other while chewing on some terribly made pop corn. Yes, the pop corn sold here a terrible. You’re welcome.
26. Rappelling at Bhongir
We’ve all grown up seeing action movies in which the hero rappels down a building, in through a window to save the love of his life. And we’ve all dreamt of doing that at some point. Rappelling at Bhongir can make one part of it come true, rappelling down the hill and that’s still pretty exciting.
27. Long drive at ORR
The idea of a long drive has always hit us all. But the potholes, reckless drivers and narrow roads of the city made sure that the idea never materialized. Not anymore. Take your car, fill the fuel and head out to Outer Ring Road to enjoy a peaceful, uninterrupted long drive.
28. Attend a play at Ravindra Bharati
For years, Ravindra Bharati has been a pillar of art and culture in the city. A visit to this place to watch a play or a music concert is exactly the kind of experience you need to get glimpses of what the old Hyderabad used to be.
29. The Rajasthan experience at Dhola Ri Dhani
If you want to go to Jaipur but cannot because of – leaves, work, family commitments or budget issues – let Jaipur come to you at Dhola Ri Dhani. With authentic Rajasthani food, a little Rajasthani village inside, puppet shows and a tiny train ride, this is a must-visit place for every Hyderabadi.
30. Indoor football at Hot-Fut
Indian grounds aren’t really ideal for playing football. And even if you manage to play on these, a sliding Arjen Robben celebration will take you straight to the hospital with all sorts of injuries. But you can avoid all that by playing on the Astroturf at HotFut, an indoor football arena.
31. Shooting bullets at HCU
As misleading as the headline is, we do not mean shoot the protesting students of the university. We mean head to the RAAP shooting range inside the University of Hyderabad and fire some air rifle pellets at targets to blow off some steam.
32. Have a ‘Dialogue in the Dark’
This place is a one-of-a-kind theme restaurant located inside Inorbit Mall and offers its customers an experience of dining in complete darkness. The place is like a candle light dinner sans the candles and you can’t even see the food you are eating.
33. Visit the state central Library, Chikkadpally
For all the book worms out there, the state central library is one place you have to visit. The place is run by the government, requires no membership to enter and charges just Rs 5 for entry. You can carry no books from their vast collection outside without membership, but sitting there and reading them is an experience you’ll want more of.
34. Laser tag at SVM mall
Contra was one of the most popular 8-bit video games in the 90s and the 2000s and as kids, we all dreamt of being one of the characters on it shooting lasers at the enemies. Laser tag at SVM mall comes very close to being inside the game with laser guns and equipment and will transport you to the fond memories of playing that game.
35. A walk at KBR Park
KBR park is located right in the middle of the top flight areas of Hyderabad. But what’s so special about a walk in this park? For starters, it is a beautiful park but to back this up, you stand a chance of running into your favourite Tollywood stars as this is where most of them come for a jog.
36. Midnight dosa at Ram Ki Bandi
Ram Ki Bandi, outside Mozamjahi market has a reputation of making delicious pizza like dosas like no one else in the city. The place opens at 3 am and has so much demand that all its food is done by 5 am. Generally very crowded, you better go with an MLA’s recommendation to get some good dosa here.
37. Spend an evening at Numaish
India’s largest industrial Exhibition, Numaish, happens every year at Hyderabad. Although the long-term Hyderabadis know all about this extravaganza, the ones who have recently moved here have no clue about this chaotic yet magical place. It is an experience exclusive to Hyderabad and an opportunity to go here must not be passed on.
38. Watch a cricket match at RGICS
For a nation full of cricket maniacs, Hyderabad is lucky to have a full fledged cricket stadium that hosts all sorts of matches – from IPL to international and even local Ranji matches. And as a proud cricket fan, watching a cricket match here, live, should be on the top of your priority list.
39. Boating at Durgam Cheruvu
This place is an amazing place to go paddle boating because of the kind of view it offers. On one side you see the heights of Inorbit mall, on the other you see the heights of an uninhabited lush green hill.
You read that right. Procrastination is exclusive to India and yet, we’ve managed to take the top spot on the list. So feel free to delay your work and take some time out to do absolutely nothing; and if someone asks, just say ‘lite lelo miyaan’ with the Hyderabadi swag. And the day you do this, an imaginary authority stamps your forehead with an invisible sign that read ‘Pakka Hyderabadi’. Welcome to the club.