Date of visit: 18/03/2011
Golkonda fort was the capital of the kingdom of Golkonda in the medieval Deccan. It is located at a distance of 11 km from Hyderabad. Timings are from: 9.00 am – 5.30 pm (Open all days) Entry Fee: Rs. 5 for Indian Nationals, Rs. 100 for Foreign Nationals and Video camera charge is: Rs. 25. I found this information written in a board inside the Golkonda fort:
Golkonda derives it’s name from the telugu word “Golla Konda” which means a shephard’s hill. Initially the fort was under the control of Kakatiyas but passed into the hands of Bahamanis in AD 1363. After their downfall it was made capital in AD 1518 by Sultan Quli, the founder of the Qutub Shahi kingdom. He was succeeded by Jamshid (1543-1550), Ibrahim Qutub Shah (1550-1580), Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah (1580-1612), Sultan Muhammad Qutub Shah (1612-1626) Abdullah Qutub Shah (1626-1672), Abul Hasan Tana Shah (1672-1687). Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah (1580-1612) was a great patron of telugu literature and a pioneer of Decanni literature. He bulit Charminar and founded the city of Hyderabad. Abul Hasan Tana Shah, the last sultan patronized a form of dance drama which subsequently became popular as Kuchipudi. In 1687, Aurangzeb annexed the kingdom to his mughal empire and appointed Asif Jah who proclaimed independence as Nizam-ul-mulk. In AD 1713 his successors are known as Nizams and ruled Hyderabad till 1948.
The massive fort with three tier fortification protected by a moat and eight entrance gates played a remarkable role in the medieval Deccan. The Golkonda fort with it’s inpregnable citadel is characterized by armories, magazines, granaries, reservoirs, mosques and well planned township and above all an immaculate water supply system. Some of the important structures of Golkonda include Balahissar, clapping portico, mortuary bath, Silai khana, Nagina bath, Taramati mosque, Guard lines, Akkanna-Madanna offices, Ramadas jail, Durbar hall, Ambar khana, Ibrahim mosque, and baradari on the summit.