Indian Journey Part III: Introduction to Hyderabad

June 23, 2010 in India, Travel by pacejmiller

Hyderabad is located in the mid-southern part of India.  I had heard very little about the place myself other than from my friend who was getting married there, and had originally thought of it as some little country town in the middle of nowhere.  Shows how much I know.

Hyderabad has apparently become quite a hub of activity in India in recent years, largely thanks to the IT boom.  Now Hyderabad is the IT capital of India (not that you’d be able to tell walking on its streets).

The city itself doesn’t feel very big, even though it took us around 45 minutes to get from the airport to our hotel on SD road called the Taj Tristar (a 3-star hotel that prides itself by being “more than a three star, a Tristar!”.  Lame but funny motto.).

Obviously, we would have preferred a 5-star experience but my friend and his family were kind enough to pay for our accommodation, so no complaints from us.  Sure there were a few unsightly stains on the sofas, but the room was very spacious and it was no worse than some of the 3-star hotels we stayed in in Europe.  Besides, my friend told us it was extremely close to the wedding venue.  A five minute walk, he said.

Well, let me tell you something about my friend’s five minutes (aka the “Indian Five Minutes”) and “walking” in Hyderabad.  From about 15 years of experience, I know my friend’s “5 minutes” translates to at least 20.  Using his perspective of time he’ll be alive for more than 400 years.

Realistically, the hotel is about a 5-minute auto ride away, which translates to about a 20 minute walk on a flat road with nothing on it.  But walking in Hyderabad (and I assume most of India) is no ordinary walk.  As I mentioned in my previous post about traffic, it’s crazy out there.  A simple task such as crossing the road becomes a life-and-death experience.  You just have to patient, follow the crowd, and hope for the best.

Needless to say, we caught autos to the venue every single time (taxis were at least 20 times more expensive for the same distance).