What is more exciting than a weekend getaway? A New Year getaway! If you’re from Hyderabad and want to end this year detached from the madding crowd and loud parties and start 2019 with some self-indulgent travel, here are the places near Hyderabad you should be looking at. By Shubhanjana Das

1. Hampi:

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Coracle ride anyone? . . Coracles in Hampi are being used since the time of Vijayanagara empire. The primary usage of coracles is for fishing. However, this has now become a means of ride to enjoy the swirling waters of River Tungabhadra 🙂 . . Location 📌 ➡ Hampi . Dates 🗓 ➡ 21st Dec, 30th Dec . . Credit 📸 ➡ @mobi_shots . DM @plantheunplanned for more details of the event 😊 . . Use #plantheunplanned to get featured . . . . #oneplus6 #hemakutahill #hampi #karnataka #travelkarnataka #karnataka_focus #karnatakastreets #karnatakatourism #kannadanadu_ #storiesofindia #_coi #oph #indianphotos #indiapictures #tripotocommunity #indiaview #_woi #natgeoindia #inspiroindia #indianphotography #YourShotPhotographer #mypixeldiary #india_everyday #igersofindia #NGTIndia #india_undiscovered #igramming_india #lonelyplanetindia #_instaindia_

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Perhaps the most heard-of destination near Hyderabad in this list, Hampi is a history lover’s paradise. The place is stuck in time with the remains of the Vijaynagar Empire still intact. The Tungabhadra river divides Hampi into two parts, the ‘touristy’ and the ‘hippie’ part. There are an endless number and a crazy variety of activities you can indulge in. For instance, besides exploring the many ruins of Hampi, visit the sacred Virupaksha temple during the aarti, climb to the birthplace of Hanuman to witness a glorious sunrise, try cliff-jumping and bouldering.  

Distance from Hyderabad: 377.4 KM 

How to reach: You can either drive to Hampi or take an overnight Volvo bus. 

Cost (for 3 days): Rs. 25, 000 per person. 

2. Warangal:

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#Ramappa #Temple also known as the Ramalingeswara temple, is located 77 km from #Warangal, the ancient capital of the #Kakatiya dynasty, 157 km from Hyderabad in the state of #Telangana in southern India. It lies in a valley at Palampet village of Venkatapur Mandal, in erstwhile Mulug Taluq of Jayashankar Bhupalpally district, a tiny village long past its days of glory in the 13th and 14th centuries. An inscription in the temple dates it to the year 1213 AD and says it was built by a General Recherla Rudra, during the period of the Kakatiya ruler #Ganapati Deva. The temple is a Shivalaya, where Lord Ramalingeswara is worshipped. It stands majestically on a 6 ft high star-shaped platform. The hall in front of the sanctum has numerous carved pillars that have been positioned to create an effect that combines light and space wonderfully. The temple is named after the sculptor Ramappa, who built it, and is perhaps the only temple in India to be named after a craftsman who built it. History says that it took 40 years to build this temple. The main structure is in a reddish sandstone, but the columns round the outside have large brackets of black basalt. These are carved as mythical animals or female dancers or musicians, and are "the masterpieces of Kakatiya art, notable for their delicate carving, #sensuous postures and elongated bodies and heads". The roof (garbhalayam) of the temple is built with bricks, which are so light that they are able to float on water. There are two small Shiva shrines on either side of the main temple. The enormous Nandi within, facing the shrine of #Shiva, remains in good condition. Nataraja Ramakrishna revived #Perini Shivatandavam (Perini Dance), by seeing the sculptures in this temple. The dance poses, written in Nritta Rathnavalid by Jayapa Senaani, also appear in these sculptures. The temple remained intact even after repeated wars, plunder and destruction during wars and natural disasters. There was a major earthquake during the 17th century which caused some damage. Many of the smaller structures were neglected and are in ruins. The #Archaeological Survey of India has taken charge of it. #upsc #generalknowledge #tspsc #ips

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Another historical haven tucked in the heart of Andhra Pradesh is Warangal. Kakatiya Dynasty’s capital, Warangal has managed to preserve the architectural remains of the era, which can be witnessed at the Warangal Fort. The Thousand Pillar Temple, Bhadrakali Temple, Kakatiya Zoological Park, and the Pakhal Lake and Wildlife Sanctuary are only a few of the many gems Warangal boasts of. 

Distance from Hyderabad: 145 KM 

How to reach: You can either drive to Warangal or take the train that takes you straight from Hyderabad to Warangal. There are also regular buses that ply between these places. 

Cost (for 2 days): Rs. 15,000 per person 

3. Pochampally:

If you’re in a sartorially experimental mood, we recommend you visit the Weavers’ Village, Pochampally, located awfully close to Hyderabad. Not only can you shop at Pochampally Handloom Park but also witness ‘ikat like designs being woven on cotton and silk on mechanised and loom pits at Raj Kumar Handlooms. You can also explore the Vinobha Bhave Nagarjuna’s temple, a Spartan museum, and Chenethkala Kendram, among other places. 

Distance from Hyderabad: 42 KM 

How to reach: Regular buses ply from Hyderabad to Pochampally at short intervals. You can also drive by yourself or hire a taxi from Hyderabad. 

Cost (for 3 days): Rs. 10,000 per person 

4. Nagarjuna Sagar Dam:

Built on the Krishna River, the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam is the world’s largest stone masonry dam. The dam is built on what used to be the site of Buddhist teachings in South India. In the middle of the reservoir is the island Nagarjunakonda, which has managed to preserve its past with the help of a Buddhist museum that has excavations dating far back to the 3rd century. The lake created by the dam is the third largest in the world and the dam is itself one of the tallest, which means you can witness uninterrupted panoramic views of the place. The picturesque Ethipotha Falls is a stone’s throw away. 

Distance from Hyderabad: 153 KM 

How to reach: An easy drive from Hyderabad will take you to Nagarjuna Sagar. If you’re not too keen on that, you can avail the bus or taxi services easily. 

Cost (for 2 days): Rs. 5,000 per person.  

5. Vizag:

Vizag or Vishakhapatnam is undoubtedly one of the favourite travel destinations for the Hyderabadis. The Yarada Beach, Borra Caves, Submarine Museum, Kailasgiri, and VUDA Park are major attractions, which make a new years’ trip to Vizag from Hyderabad worth every penny. You can sip on the freshly brewed coffee grown on the Eastern Ghats of Andhra Pradesh and do some shopping at the tribal haats in Araku Valley. If you’re in the mood to do nothing at all, just sit back, relax, and stare into the infinity of the sea.  

Distance from Hyderabad: 618 Km 

How to reach: Flights, buses, and trains ply from Hyderabad to Vizag on a daily basis. 

Cost (for 2 days): Rs. 20,000 per person 

Related: The Beautiful Murals in Hyderabad’s Maqtha Art District That We Didn’t Know Existed!