A Visit to the Splendid Paigah Tombs in Hyderabad, India

(Last Updated On: September 23, 2017)

Nestled in a labyrinth of houses of a quiet neighborhood away from the bustling Charminar are the beautiful tombs of Paigah. These tombs that give a feel of being desolate don’t easily fall on the radar of Hyderabad tourist places. Though the structures not as massive as the Qutub Shahi tombs the work of art and sculpture at the Paigah tombs are unparalleled in term of its fine craftsmanship.

The noble families of Paigah were the most influential and powerful families considered next only to Nizams. The founder of Paigah clan was Abdul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung who served the second Nizam, Salabat Jang, during the 18th century on the highest position of Commander in Chief. Paigah nobles were ardent loyalists of the Nizams and have served them for generations. The daughters of Paigah were married to Nizams and had the right to maintain their own court.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

After visiting the Purani Haveli we hired a taxi which maneuvered through a maze of narrow alleys to the Paigah tombs. We walked in through a massive whitewashed double-storeyed gateway structure into the tomb complex. On both side of the paved path were tombs scattered in an arched compound open to the sky. The place around looked deserted with no one around, no tourists or even a local.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

Chhavi was sleeping and the sun was scorching hot. We clicked some pictures of the structures and were wondering which way to proceed next when we heard a voice. An old man waved and ushered us towards him into the shade of the building. The old man introduced himself as the caretaker of the Paigah tomb complex. The caretaker was keen on walking us through the place guiding us through each of the mausoleums taking pride in showing us the details of the architectural masterpiece. He even showed us different vantage points to get best shots of the remarkable artwork at the tombs complex.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad Paigah Tombs

Paigah Tombs Hyderabad India

The Paigahs are said to be great patrons of art and architecture which is very well evident from the tombs. The 200 years old Paigah Tombs also known as the Maqhbara Shams al-Umara are a fine example of Indo-Islamic architecture featuring different architectural styles from Mughal, Persian, Rajasthani, and Deccan architecture. Each of the mausoleums built of lime and mortar is decorated in a style different from the other incorporating an array of designs and artwork on inlaid marble carvings. The marvelous artwork at the tombs is a wonder to behold which makes it a must-visit place on a Hyderabad tour.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

The tombs are enclosed in walls embellished with rich stucco work and elegantly designed motifs. Some of the tombs have carved marble canopy while others are open to the sky. The screens used in the walls and to separate two tomb enclosures have intricately designed latticework in meticulously designed patterns.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad Paigah Tombs

The first tomb of the complex is that of the founder Abdul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung who was laid to rest here in 1786. The tomb architecture is resplendent with impressive latticework with a canopy of rich silk material. This location came to be known as Paigah tombs was later the resting place for other family members and generations of Paigah nobles. The tomb of Abdul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung is observed with great reverence and for the same reason, we refrained from clicking its pictures.

The pillars, arches and the railings surrounding the tombs are gracefully designed for aesthetic appeal. The names of the Paigah families are engraved on the epitaphs and the canopies of the tombs.

Paigah Tombs Hyderabad India

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad Paigah Tombs

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

The architrave above the doors has elaborate intricate designs as well with lattice work on wooden doors and the window sections.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

Paigah Tombs Hyderabad India

The most breathtaking part of the tomb art is the latticework. The latticework or the ‘Jali’ work have been used in numerous places like railings, fences, and screens. The latticework has unique designs of in geometrical and floral patterns. Some of the tombs also have colorful inlaid mosaic work in elaborate patterns.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad Paigah Tombs

Paigah Tombs Hyderabad India

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad Paigah Tombs

The roof of the building is yet another sight for exemplary artwork. While the balustrades have complex designs of floral and vines similar to the interior the roofs are dotted with interesting pineapple shaped stucco work which is unique and unusual but marvelous to behold.

Paigah Tombs Hyderabad India

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad Paigah Tombs

There is a mosque at one end of the complex beyond a huge tank. The mosque with two minarets is said to be as old as the tomb complex.

Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad the Paigah Tombs

We were awestruck with the sublime artwork at the beautiful tombs of Paigah but were a bit disappointed with the conservation work. Though the complex was very cleanly maintained the lattice work was broken at several places and the plaster of pillars had fallen off which made us wonder if the heritage would be passed onto our next generation to marvel at. Paigah tombs definitely make to the top of the Hyderabad points of interest and are one of the unmissable tourist places in Hyderabad City. The tombs are open on all days except on Fridays from 10 am to 5 pm.

Would you like to pin this post?

10 thoughts on “A Visit to the Splendid Paigah Tombs in Hyderabad, India

  • September 12, 2017 at 6:01 pm
    Permalink

    That architecture is amazing! I love how intricate all of the archways are. It’s definitely a bummer that they’re not doing more in the way of conservation, but I guess people have to pick and choose where to spend their efforts, right?

    Reply
  • September 13, 2017 at 4:15 am
    Permalink

    I had been to Hyderabad so many times but had missed tombs of Paigah. I did not even know about it till I read this blog. The designs are impressive and aesthetic. Government should promote this in their heritage walks.

    Reply
  • September 13, 2017 at 1:15 pm
    Permalink

    You’re very right about the stunning latticework in these tombs, incredible! I can’t believe no one else was there, how lucky you were to have it to yourself. I will remember this place if I ever visit India 🙂

    Reply
  • September 14, 2017 at 4:31 am
    Permalink

    I lived in Hyderabad for couple of years and never knew of this place. Paigah tombs are having stunning architecture with Indo-Islamic style of intricate works. Those pillars are wonderful and even the courtyard. The latticework or jali pattern is incredible. Good you have covered the unknown destination so beautifully.

    Reply
  • September 14, 2017 at 12:36 pm
    Permalink

    stunning place indeed. I never heard of this place before or town, but I always love learning about new hidden places on this blog. Stunning architecture and such beautiful photos too.

    Reply
  • September 14, 2017 at 2:17 pm
    Permalink

    I’m a sucker for architecture, and this is absolutely stunning! The latticework reminds me a lot of what you would find in Moorish architecture. I would love to see a photo of the caretaker that showed you around 🙂

    Reply
  • September 14, 2017 at 2:32 pm
    Permalink

    I’ve never even heard of these tombs! India seems to be a country full of hidden gems. The architecture is breathtaking and it’s a shame more people don’t know about places like this as, like you said, maybe they would do more conservation on it. I’d love to go back to India and explore the secret places like this, and the Taj Mahal etc 🙂

    Reply
  • September 14, 2017 at 9:02 pm
    Permalink

    I have been to Hyderabad 2-3 times now but didnt even know of this place till date. Such an architectural gem and such intricate design! Loved this post of yours.

    Reply
  • September 16, 2017 at 11:28 am
    Permalink

    I dint even know about Paigah tombs but yes I have not explored Hyderabad much except for a 1 day visit. Indian architectural glory is hidden in these gems. Such intricate work of art impresses us even now, I wonder what would these be like in their hey days. I wish it is refurbished to keep our heritage going.

    Reply
  • September 27, 2017 at 1:26 am
    Permalink

    The structure that houses the Paigah tombs is is quite astounding edifice. Yet it is a regular cemetery the tombs are are opened to the elements. What is held in two two stories of the building?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: