Done visiting the Golconda Fort, the Charminar, Zoo and other attractions in Hyderabad? Shopped all the pearls and enjoyed the biryani? Wait there’s more…beautiful temples, storied forts and amazing outdoors, although just a little away from the city. So don’t check out of your FabHotel in the City of Nizams just yet; instead, go discover the top 10 most beautiful places to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km. We got your list done and ready, right here!
1. Nagarjuna Sagar
Ruled by the mighty Satvahanas and the Ikshvakus, an important Buddhist center of learning and propagation, and the site of one of the largest dams in India, Nagarjuna Sagar is full of surprises. One of the best places to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km, Nagarjuna Sagar has enough to keep you joyfully busy: go tiger spotting at the Nagarjunasagar – Srisailam Tiger Reserve, spend a day at the Nagarjuna Konda Museum marveling at rare Buddhist archaeological relics or get frisky at the Ethipothala Waterfalls, one of the tallest in the world. The best time to visit this place is monsoon season when the gates of the dam are opened and water gushes through its 26 gates!
- Distance from Hyderabad: 150 Km
Warangal was the capital of the ancient kingdom of the Kakatiyas, a 12th-century dynasty that ruled the area and over their reign, the Kakatiya kings built forts, temples and public structures. While here, look out for the stunning Bhadrakali Temple, the imposing stone gateways called the Kakatiya Toranas at the Warangal Fort, the Swayambhu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, and the Ramappa temple situated near Ramappa Lake. All these ancient structures will transport you back to historical times. You can also spend some time spotting wildlife at the well-maintained Eturnagaram Wildlife Sanctuary on the banks of the river Godavari, in the area.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 145 Km
Bidar isn’t going to be a day-trip because there is so much to see here – from the Bidar Fort – one of the biggest in India – to the many palaces like the Gagan Mahal and Rangeen Mahal, historic buildings like the Solah Khamba Mosque, the Gurudwara Nanak Jhira Sahib and temples like Paapnaash Shiva Temple. While here, visit the beautifully constructed domed tombs of the Bahmani and Barid Shahi rulers and don’t leave without buying some samples of the distinct black and silver bidriware made of the unique black mud inlaid with silver or metal.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 145 Km
Even though it looks like any other urban area today with cotton ginning and rice mills being the main industries, legend has it that the area near Mahbubnagar is where the famous Golconda diamonds (including the super famed Koh-I-Noor) were mined from. What’s more exciting is that the Geological Survey of India says there may be more mines in the area!
Feel like going on a diamond hunt? Head to Mahbubnagar, one of the best places to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km and try your luck! Even if you don’t find any diamonds, you will still come back richer having visited Mahbubnagar’s many attractions like the 2nd century Umamaheshwaram, the Brahma temples in Alampur, the Jurala Reservoir, the 700-year-old Banyan tree at Pillalamari, and the 18th-century Srirangapur temple. You could spend quality time with family and friends at the Mallela Teertham Waterfalls or the Kolisagar Dam, a popular picnic spot.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 105 Km
5. Ananthagiri Hills
With a beautiful temple, an expansive lake and thick forests perfect for trekking, Ananthagiri Hills tops the list of places to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km. The destination is easily accessible and offers you a relaxing day with a visit to the Anantha Padmanabha Swamy Temple, dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The banks of the tranquil Kotipally Reservoir make a great picnic spot and two trekking trails into the forest (both starting at the temple) give you the inside view of wide-range of flora and fauna.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 80 Km
Srisailam counts among the few hill stations in the region and with its many attractions, earns a spot on our list of places to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km. Hemmed to the side of the Krishna River, Srisailam is home to one of the 12 Jyotirlingas at the Mallikarjun Temple which was probably constructed in the 2nd century by the ruling Satvahana Kings. Other attractions in the area include a Tiger reserve, the Akkamahadevi Caves and a dam in the Nallamalai forest range. With easy connectivity via road or train, Srisailam is a great option for a weekend excursion from Hyderabad.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 215 Km
Built by the Padmanayaka king, Anapotanayaka, in the 14th century, the Rachakonda Fort is an awesome place to visit near Hyderabad for a day’s excursion. The fort is adorned with stunning examples of Kakaktiya art and is a good place to spend a day with friends or family. Do carry water and plenty of food with you as there are no restaurants or eateries around the place.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 60 Km
Nalgonda is a vibrant blend of traditions and diverse cultures leading to an eclectic mix of city attractions. Home to many great dynasties like the Ikshvakus, Chalukyas and the Rashtrakutas as well as the Bahmani sultans, Nalgonda boasts of several beautiful temples like Yadagri Gutta Temple, Chaya Someshwara Temple, and Kolanpaku Jain Temple. A good place to visit near Hyderabad that lies within a 200 km radius, Nalgonda also has a museum for the historically inclined and the Bhuvanagiri Fort built by Tribhuvanmalla Vikramaditya VI for the thrill seekers and the historic Jan Pahad Saidulla Dargah.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 100 Km
If you have a weekend or a little longer, opt for a trip to Khammam (or Khammamett) situated on the banks of the beautiful Munneru River, a tributary of the mighty Krishna. A very popular place to visit near Hyderabad, Khammam is famous for its Narsimhaswami temple that sees visitors come from far and wide. Kinnerasani Wildlife Park is another attraction; built around the Kinnerasani Dam Project over the Godavari, the area boasts of deer, monkeys, and a suspected crocodile population. You can spend a few enjoyable hours here or try the Khammam Fort, built in 950 AD by the Musunuri Kamma Kings for its solid architecture that spells impregnable (think thick bastions and ramparts, artillery-ready windows and balconies and canon-fortified gates), the huge rainwater well called the Zafar Well and explore its many secret tunnels.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 195 Km
10. Pakhal Lake and Wildlife Sanctuary
A stunning artificial lake, Pakhal is believed to have been constructed by the Kakatiya King Ganapati Deva sometime in the 13th century and covers an area more than 30 sq.km. It was most likely constructed to irrigate farmland but is now a popular picnic spot with boat rides on the lake and picnics on its banks. The lake is also croc-breeding center and you will need to plan your trips to avoid the season.
Yoked to the lake is the expansive Pakhal Wildlife Sanctuary that plays host to a wide variety of animals like leopards, boars, monitor lizards, the 4-horned antelope – the chausingha, panthers, hyenas, and blackbuck among others. The forest is thick with deciduous fauna like Cordifolia, Bridelia Retusa and some evergreens like Mallotus Phillipensis. The area is worth exploring (albeit with a trained guide) and is a perfect weekend getaway.
- Distance from Hyderabad: 200 Km
If we had listed them all, there would have been more than 10 places to visit near Hyderabad that lie within a 200 km radius, but our recommended top 10 are the above mentioned. Other places worthy of your time and exploration are:
- The 10th-century Bhongir Fort built by the Chalukyas in the Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district. At a distance of 100 Km approx., this is an intriguing fortress that changed hands many times over the centuries with each occupier leaving behind their stamp on it.
- The 13th-century Khilla Ghanpur, another fort that has witnessed the change of rulers and the many dynasties of the region first-hand. Built by King Gona Ganapa Reddy, the fort is still in good condition and you can even see the ancient cannons that were once used in the wars. Also, watch out for the beautiful water-bodies that once supplied water to the garrisoned forces here.
- The Kollapur Palace in Kollapur built by the Nizams in 1871 is another good place to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km. Situated in the town of Kollapur about 178 Km from Hyderabad, the palace is worth a visit for its magnificent architecture, the many royal buildings held within the palace complex and its decorated arches and doorways.
Got your own list of places to visit near Hyderabad within 200 km? Share it with us in comments below and we could come with a sequel to this post!