Fuller Minds

Minds that are not always empty

SalarJung Museum

Google maps are reliable only so far in Hyderabad. It does not show on the maps if roads are closed for construction. While I have been to this end of the city, I have never driven to Old City. Could never remember the directions if my life was depended on it! Google maps worked for about 80% of the way. And thanks to the traffic police and the kind pedestrians of the Old City, I reached my destination without sweating much. 😊

I would advise people to take metro, if you plan to visit SalarJung Museum. If you do choose to come by your own vehicle, the premises have parking facility for both cars and bikes. The website says the entry ticket is INR 500 per person, but they are charging INR 50 at the counter and another INR 50 per camera phone or camera. Best to leave additional mobiles in your vehicle or they have locker rooms to store them.

The entire tour of museum will take about 3 hours if you maintain a good pace. This museum is much bigger than the Birla Museum and has much more art pieces on display. I went prepared with chips and fruit juices this time to keep up my energy. The museum also has a cafeteria. But it was a Saturday and the place was packed with tourists and school kids. And the place was smelly! One downside of SalarJung Museum is – it is not very well kept as Birla Museum. Unlike Birla Museum, this place has chairs in every room and in the halls to relax if we are too tired from walking.

The entry ticket has the floor maps of the museum to guide us. I will only mention the art I liked the most to keep this post short. Well, as short as I can😅 . Most pieces are standard museum art: Spice boxes, goblets from 18th & 19th Century, Miniature arts, Huge Vases, fancy Nawabi jugs, Filigree art, war equipment, ivory carvings, wooden furniture, wooden carvings, Wooden screens used for changing clothes.

The carpets display was worst smelling room apart from washrooms! That could be because the carpets go through treatment to keep them in good condition. Even though we have seen horses and elephants with jewellery in period drama movies, it was funny looking at just the jewellery without the horses and elephants. There were few tadipatralu in Sanskrit on display – extracts from Bhagavat Gita and Ramayana. I liked the tapestries in Egyptian and Syrian gallery. I loved the cute little dice pieces in the Jade gallery. And the floor to ceiling ornate mirrors in the European glass gallery! European Clock gallery had hundreds of clocks in all shapes and sizes. Some of them reminded me of Cogsworth from the movie – Beauty and the Beast.

Art pieces I loved the most: cigar stand in the shape of old train engine, prototype of olden day’s car carriage, the crowd pleaser – veiled Rebecca. This sculpture was a beautiful mystery. How the artist could have made the face and veil on the face with marble is a wonder! Ivory chess pieces of Rajasthan, Wooden carving of Garuda – this took me back to Tirupati. Loved the silver Candelabra stands – they were tiny and cute! And the porcelain letter box in Utility Ware gallery. The second crowd pleaser: Double statute of a man in the front and a woman in back – depicting and a German drama.

Overall, the tour was part educational and part entertainment for me. I recommend this place for history geeks.

Saudhamini Mylaram

HR by profession. Reading has always been one of my favorite things to do apart from gardening, cooking and driving.

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