Sufi Night & Dinner at Chowmahalla Palace

Date: Wednesday, 24 September 2014 (after the Iconic Hyderabad Tour)| 18.30 hrs to 21.30 hrs

Description: Optional Social Event. A perfect ending to a busy day. After a packed morning at the Colloquium, an energetic climb to the top of Golconda Fort, and a stroll through the busy bylanes of the Charminar area, and the exotic Laad Baazar, this magical evening unfolds...

Includes: Guided tour of Chowmahalla Palace | Qawwali recital | interpretation of Sufism by a Sufi scholar | followed by a resplendent repast of Hyderabadi cuisine. 

Chowmahalla Palace

Description: We will take you on a guided tour of the Chowmahalla palace, which was the seat of the Nizams of the Asaf Jahi dynasty. This will be followed by a Qawaali  recital by a well-known troupe of local artistes on the front lawns of  the illuminated grand Chowmahalla Palace. 

The roots of Qawwali can be traced back to 8th century Persia. It is a form of Sufi devotional music that blends Persian and South Asian influences, and was made internationally popular by the famous Pakistani musician (the late) Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. Sufism was introduced to Western audiences largely through the writings of Sufi poets and philosophers such as Rumi

Hyderabad’s tryst with Sufism long predates the arrival of its Muslim rulers. One of the most revered Sufi saints came to this region during the rule of the Hindu Kakatiya rulers. In the 14th century, with the coming of the Muslim rulers of the Bahamani and the Qutab Shahi dynasties, Sufi saints played the role of spiritual and moral advisors to the kings. This tradition was also continued by the Nizams under whose patronage several Sufi saints left behind their mark on this region.

Interspersed with the Qawwali recital, we will listen to a well-known Sufi scholar who will help us understand the basic concepts of Sufism. He will also interpret the meaning behind some of the lyrics of the songs and provide a deeper understanding of the connection between the music and Sufi thoughts. 

This mesmerizing performance will be followed by a buffet dinner featuring some of the famous kebabs, Biryani and breads that this region is famous for. 

Rates: 50 US$ per person (not included in the registration fee; tickets may be purchased online at the time of registration for Colloquium delegates and accompanying persons).  

Dress: Smart casual (This event follows the afternoon tour and you will not have an opportunity to return to your hotels after the tour to change).

Transport: Complimentary shuttle services will take you back to your hotels after dinner.


  • Online booking for this event closes along with registration on 1 September 2014. No on-site tickets will be available.
  • Cancellation before 1 September 2014: no charge; After 1 September: 10% of fee. After 8 September, 2014: full retention.
  • If you do not wish to attend the Iconic Hyderabad Tour, you may still purchase tickets for this evening online. However, you will have to find your own transport to the Chowmahalla Palace, or inform Royal Travels.
  • This evening is put together for your enchantment by Jonty Rajagopalan and her team at Detours India.
  • In case of rain that prevents us from holding this event out-doors at the Chowmahalla Palace, we will endevour to find an alternate venue for this event.