If you visit Hyderabad, the first entry on your checklist is the Ramoji Film City. It is one of the most famous tourist attractions of the state and also one of the dream locations for all movie lovers in the country. Ramoji is the largest film city in the world and the proof is in the form of a Guinness World Record certificate painted on one of their walls. There is no reason you would miss visiting this awesome place, except that it takes almost a full day.
You can majorly divide the tour into three divisions: the Bus Tour, Movie Magic, and Sahas Adventures. This will take a minimum of 6 hours and a maximum of 9 hours, depending on you. However, it will not be wrong to say that every minute spent here is worth it.
I took a bus and it dropped me inside the Film City, at the place called New Parking, which is next to Eureka. Eureka is where you get into a unique red color vintage bus to start the film city tour. The buses will be at bus stops 1 and 2, and it is advised that you take the bus from the 2nd bus stop. These unique buses have ‘eureekaaa eureekaa’ playing all over to make you understand that you are at the right place.
In this red bus, there is a guide who takes you through the film city sets, gardens and roads and tells you about the significance of each place. They introduce every set in a humorous way, amusing you with the facts about movies that were shot at those places (you must know that Baahubali was shot there for 600 days). The buses also halt at sets to let you take a tour inside them and if you are lucky enough, you get to see a live shooting with film stars. These red buses take you to the point where the movie sets end, and gardens and bird sanctuaries begin.
There is enough flora and fauna in the 1440 acres of Ramoji Land, but there are also sanctuaries with different species of birds and butterflies for you to see. There are ostriches and their eggs. You'd also find many kinds of ducks, peacocks, pigeons and parrots, living in a limited space. There are gardens full of different kinds of flowers and bonsai trees. There are also a few shops for you to take souvenirs back home. After this tour, you can take a bus back to Eureka.
There are many restaurants and a drive-in near Eureka, where you can eat to regain your energy for the next tour. After lunch comes Movie Magic. Here you get to see the movie making process, a magic show and a trip into space. You can even volunteer to be a part of the movie-making process, fulfilling your dream of being in a movie. By the end of this, if it is not 14.30 yet, you still have time go to the massage parlor near Eureka, for a foot and calf massage. It will only cost you 50 bucks.
The Sahas Adventures start at 14.30 sharp, and the sooner you reach here, the more accessible all the activities would be. The most highly rated adventures are Bungee Ejection, Zip Lining, High Rope Course, and Net Course. You can buy your individual tickets at the Sahas Adventures entry counter if you have not taken it with your entry tickets. There are many other fun activities at Sahas including ATV (all-terrain vehicle) rides, archery, shooting, paintball, mountain biking, etc.
After having your dose of adrenaline, you can come back to Eureka to roam about the sets or enjoy rides in the main area. Snacks available everywhere, all the time, so if the activities get you hungry, you can always grab a bite. There are many rides and even a park for kids near Eureka. This majorly covers your Ramoji city trip, however, they have special shows and events happening as per the season. You can check them out at the entrance or on BookMyShow. There is also a very famous stunt show performed for the audience, which is a must watch.
To say that I had a blast at the Ramoji Film City would not be exaggerated at all. It is the largest film city, very clean and well maintained. You are bound to have a great time here!
Which Ticket to Buy:
There are three main kinds of tickets. The general one is INR 1100, and only includes the tour. The INR 2200 ticket includes an AC bus tour, an express entry to rides and a buffet lunch. The third ticket, for INR 1600, includes three SAHAS activities on the price of two. Buying tickets is completely dependent on the weather because the main difference in the tickets is the AC bus (food costs INR 260 at the buffet). I recommend the INR 1600 ticket, because you will be getting off the AC bus every 10 minutes to check out a new place, and the heat will make it worse.
People who are visiting Hyderabad can stay at the hotels in Ramoji. Tara and Sitara have good reviews online, and would not disappoint you.
How to Reach the Film City?
You can take a bus from your nearest bus stand, which will drop you at Film City between 09.00 to 10.00 hrs, depending on the traffic. The good part of the bus drive is that you reach on time to start the tour, with a minimum crowd. But you also have to leave with the bus in the evening at 18.00 hrs. This will make you miss some of the evening's special shows (if you are interested). You can also go by a private vehicle at your own convenience.
Best Sequence to Cover Things:
– Start with sightseeing as soon as you enter the film city. It will save you from the afternoon heat, as you will finish before 12.00 hrs.
– Eat at the lunch buffet at Dil Se or any other restaurant.
– You can next go and watch the filmmaking techniques in Movie Magic and finish the Space Yatra before 14.00 hrs.
– Next, you can visit Sahas Adventures. It starts from 14.30 hrs and doesn't attract crowds till 15.30 hrs.
– After Sahas, you can go back to Eureka and get a foot and calf massage, enjoy some fun rides, and the park.
Things to Keep In Mind:
– If you do not want to waste time in queues, reach Ramoji Film City by 09.00 hrs.
– If possible, buy your tickets in advance.
– Make sure you wear comfortable shoes, as you will need to walk on different terrains.
– Wear casual and comfortable clothes, fit for adventure activities. Avoid black due to the heat.
– Have breakfast before you leave for Ramoji, as the venue will only serve patties, chips, and popcorn during the tour.
– Carry a bottle of water to keep yourself hydrated, and a pair of shades in case your eyes are sun-sensitive.