Sunday, August 14, 2016

Road trip to Bidar (from Hyderabad)

Day – 31st July 2016

Bidar, situated in the north eastern part of Karnataka lies close to the Telangana-Karnataka border and is famous for the grand Bidar Fort. The place is around 130 km from Hyderabad and is a very good option for a one-day road trip.
Bidar Fort
It was a cloudy Sunday. We started at 8:00 am in the morning from Gachibowli, Hyderabad. We had hired an Innova cab and used google maps to get the route. There were some renovations happening but overall a good drive. It took us around three and a half hours to reach Bidar which included a 45-minute stop for breakfast. There is a good stretch of greenery along the way that makes the drive even more refreshing.

Directions –

We travelled via Lingampally and then it’s NH65 till Zaheerabad, where you take a right turn on SH14 to Bidar. Once in Bidar, you take a right on the Fateh Darwaza Road towards the Chaubara (clock tower). See below map for help.

There are quite a few places to explore inside the fort, that surely impresses you by its grandeur and scale. Major attractions being the remains of Diwan-i-am and Diwan-i-khaas, Solah Khamba Mosque, Rangin Mahal and Bidar Fort Museum. Authorities mostly keep Rangin Mahal locked to keep it away from the reach of rogues who generally scribble on the walls. You can still ask the guard there to show you around in his presence.

The weather actually added to the beauty of the place. Amidst light drizzles, the remains appeared mystical under the cloudy skies. 

Solah Khamba Mosque

After spending a fairly good amount of time in the fort, we went to see the remains of the Bahmani Tombs. The tombs are situated nearby, in Ashtoor which is just a 10-minute drive from the fort.

Remains of Bahmani Tombs
Remains of Bahmani Tombs
Gurudwara, Bidar was the last stop of our trip. The clock ticked 3:30 pm by the time we reached Gurudwara premises. There are a few dhabas (eating joints) on the street just before the gurudwara entrance. We had a nice lunch at one of the dhabas (Rinku Restaurant, if I recollect the name properly). The food quality and taste exceeded our expectations. I would surely recommend this place.
After devouring our meal, we went to the Gurudwara. The shrine is dedicated to Guru Nanak Dev and is very clean and peaceful. Just being there gave a very calm and soothing feeling. We spent some time in the garden before starting our journey back home.
Park at Guru Nanak Jhira Sahib
Guru Nanak Jhira Sahib

Some Considerations and what to see

  • When to go - Weather plays a major role in making or marring your experience of the fort. It’s definitely not a place to go on a hot sunny day since exploring the fort involves a good amount of walking in the open. Rainy season or winters is an ideal time to go to Bidar.
  • When to start and leave - Start early so that you can explore the fort before the sun is at its strongest in the afternoon. Also, prefer to leave well before dark. We left for Hyderabad at around 5:30 pm and found it a little difficult to drive in the dark with trucks also moving on the road.
  • What to see –

    • Bidar Fort and Guru Nanak Jhira Sahib are the two must visit places.
    • The Bahmani Tombs present some really beautiful architecture however, since the place is un-guarded with no presence from administration, it was flocked by groups of uncouth youth. Certainly not a place to go with family.
    • Narasimha Jharni a popular cave temple is also situated in Bidar. One has to walk through an excavated cave filled with water upto chest level to have a glimpse of the deity. The shrine was closed for renovation during our visit. You can check once prior to going there.

Happy Travelling!

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