“He who owns this diamond will own the world, but will also know all its misfortunes. Only God, or a woman, can wear it with impunity.”, reads the curse of Koh-i-Noor.
Clap inside the portico under the dome at the entrance of the fort and the sound will reach the person who is sitting in a strategic spot at a distance of more than a km. The system worked as an ‘instant messaging service’ for the army. The mobile towers don’t work as much, but fret not because you can talk through the walls here. The fort is replete with tunnels, sophisticated water systems & air conditioning.
A feat in engineering, Golconda has brilliant acoustics that should put the fort on a travellers’ itinerary. And the stories linked to the fort are a traveller’s treasure. Much like the ‘Koh-i-Noor’ which belonged to the fort (ages ago), the fort is shaped like a diamond – asymmetrical and rough – waiting to be discovered and shaped!
Golconda in the rough:
Golconda was initially a mud fort. It’s only when the Bahamanis came, they began organizing the mud and built a massive crystal like, lattice structure that became the fort that it is today.
The fort stood the test of time, heat and pressure and came out shining even more; the Qutb Shahi dynasty expanded this granite structure even further and Golconda rose to fame. Meanwhile, the region produced the best diamonds of the world & they mined the Hope and Koh-i-Noor from Golconda.
Cutting, Shaping and Polishing the Golconda fort:
Like a gem, Golconda was discovered and built over from a mud fort to an acoustic marvel where you clap at one place and it is heard at another. The engineers from that time must have a knack for the gems for they cut the granite, stone and rocks and constructed a building with air-cool walls. The walls pressure the hot air in ways that it’s temperature goes down by degrees when it enters the fort.
In some of the rooms, you can even stand in a corner and talk to your friend through a wall. Yes, I am not kidding. The walls transmit sound waves from one corner to another.
Before Aurangzeb sieged & mutilated the fort, it was a lively place. The buildings that are mostly ruins now were lively rooms that stood bejeweled and shone brighter than the Sun.
You enter the fort with curiosity but come out feeling astonished, surprised with myriad other emotions just like a ray of light that when falls on a crystalline object, comes out as a colorful spectrum from the other end.
Centuries has passed but Golconda has still maintained its charm. The neglect and abandonment has dampened its sheen but it bounces back every evening brighter and shinier when they organize a show & tell its tales.
I believe it won’t be incorrect to say that “Golconda fort is forever”!
Open – All days
Time – 9:00 am to 5:30 pm
Guide – Absoluetly, without fail! Ours charged INR 1000 for the long tour. Takes about 90 mins. and the money was totally worth it
Camera – allowed (at a nominal fee)
Tip – The fort area is quite huge and you would have to take a lot of steps. So, wear shoes or comfortable flats.
You may also want to watch the one hour light and sound show that is organized in the fort every evening. From November to February the first show starts at 06:30 PM and second show at 07:45 PM and from March to October the first show starts at 07:00 PM and second show at 08:15 PM.