Nalgonda is a town and a municipality in Nalgonda district in the Indian state of Telangana. Its name is derived from two Telugu words Nalla and Konda. Nalgonda in the past is referred to as Nilagiri. During the period of Bahamani kingdom, it had been renamed as Nallagonda. Later in Nizam rule, during the later kings rule the name has been transformed into Nalgonda.
Nalgonda or Nilagiri is a place of residence from ancient times. In old city center, there is an Ashoka Pillar. The panagal village was actually the city center in Kakatiya period where exquisite and highly artful temple of emerald someswara, chaya someswara temple, and a Venkateswara temple are found.
The sculpture of emerald someswara temple is par excellence and highly skillfully carved pillars demonstrate the artisans mastery as well as devotion. It is said that the temple is called as emerald someswara temple, as it was endowed with an emerald which filled the entire temple with light reflected from it in day and night. Its structure follows trikuta architecture style with Main sanctum of Siva, and sanctum of Parvati placed opposite, and sanctorum of skanda placed on the right of main sanctum.
The temple for some time was in ruins with many villagers pilfering some of the stone carvings carting away to their huts / residences. Archeological society of India, however, later on tried to protect the Temple by a fence, and the Temple stands in its glory with its pillars in-tact.
Similarly the Chaya someswara temple is an architectural wonder, where any time in day or night a column of shadow is seen exactly on the deity siva without any change throughout the year. Also, the temple main deity is always rests in water skillfully drawn from a nearby lake called panagal cheruvu.
The whole construction and water circulating arrangement is as thought the deity is endowed with cool environs. The lake is also said to be very old with a silasashana giving its origin. Main interesting feature of the stone carvings is that the script on it is Brahmi script indicating its very ancient origin.
Nilagiri is also endowed with two hills, where on one ill there is a fort, and another hill of huge rock of gnaite where a temple is seen. This hill on its one side has a huge rock of smooth surface embellished with rectangular indentures for help walking on it to reach the temple. Another interesting feature of this hill is there is large reservoir of water inside a hollow of the rock on another side with small opening to be seen as if water is stored by some-one in a pot of giant size. At all times of the year it is filled to the brim.
The hill with the fort is called as kapurala ( family residential ) gutta indicating that the families of the rulers were kept safe as this hill is very steep on all sides. This fort also has a very deep well as if to supply water for the residents for a long time.
However, the govt and local administration has shown little interest in developing and maintaining these historical places which have huge tourist potential as well as cultural importance. There is also no interest in recording the history about these places and bringout awareness with many people even from the district unaware of the importance of such great historical monuments. It is time that Govt wakes up and develops and maintains and bring to light such monuments.
There are 5 Revenue Divisions in Nalgonda District
There are 59 Mandals in Nalgonda District
Tourist attractions in Nalgonda
Some of the Places for catching the attention of Tourists in the District are:
Yadagiri Gutta, which is the most devotional place in Nalgonda is located near Bhuvanagiri Town. It is close to Hyderabad, the capital city and the APSRTC runs many buses to the temple town from Mahatma Gandhi Bus Station. The temple draws huge crowds, especially during vacations and on weekends. This is the Place of worship of Lord Laxmi Narasimha Swami.
The fort dates back to the period between late 13th century and 14th century. Devarakonda fort adorned the then prosperous kingdom established by the Padma Nayaka Veluma Rajas. The fort was ruled only by the Padma Nayaka Kings from the year 1287 to 1482 AD who made this as their palace.
World’s largest masonry dam This is famous Dam in south India with 26 gates and a Hydroelectric plant. The place also hosts waterfalls called ‘Ethipothala’ and Gowthama Buddha Museum.
Bhuvanangiri Fort was built by Tribhuvanamalla Vikramaditya VI on an isolated rock. The Bala Hisar or citadel on the top of the hill gives a bird’s eye view of the neighbouring area. The fort is associated with the herioc queen Rudramadevi and her grandson Prataparudra’s rule.
PillalaMarri is one of the oldest Lord Shiva temples which is considered to be 1000 years old. Pillalamarri, being the birthplace of the famous Telugu poet Pillamarri Pina Virabhadrudu, is not only historically but also culturally and religiously significant.
One of the famous devotional places in Telangana is also in Nalgonda dist. The Yogananda Narasimha Swami temple is located here.
Sri Jain Mandir, Kolanupaka
The Jain Shrine at Kolanupaka village, near Aler town is more than 2000 years old. This holy temple has three holy idols of Lord Adinath, Lord Neminath and ord Mahaveera and 21 other “Theerthankaras”. It is very recently renovated by more than 150 artisans from Gujarat and Rajasthan.
A small village on the banks of the Krishna River where several Buddhist structures like monasteries and pillared halls were unearthed and preserved in a museum of the Archaeological Survey of India.
A village near Nalgonda. There are several ancient temples built under the reign of the Kakatiya, Reddy and Velama kings. There is an archeological museum which has several interesting artifacts.
This village is about 18 km South of Suryapet, on banks of the Musi river, famous for its temples. There are two Ancient temples (Trilingeswara Aalayam (Shivalayam) and Veerabhadreswara Aalayam) in this village, founded by the “Reddy Rajas” in the Kakatiya’s era…They got the amazing art and beautiful sculptures carved on the black stone….These two temples are similar to the Warangal’s “Thousand pillar temple”…and Pillalamarri Temple. These templeas are famous for Every year SHIVARATHRI ‘Jatara’ too.