With its elaborate architecture and lavish gardens, fountains, and courtyards, the expansive Chowmahalla palace is a step back in time and a glimpse into the lives of India's 18th-century elite. Commissioned by the royal Nizam family in 1750, the palace took more than 100 years to build; thanks to this long span of construction, the architectural influences of Persian, Rajasthani, and European cultures are all evident. Chowmahalla translates to "four palaces"—chow means four and mahal means palace. All four palaces are located in the Southern courtyard, which is the oldest section of the grounds. Here, the period rooms feature the Nizams' extravagant furniture, clothing, and antique cars. Head to the northern courtyard next, where you can gawk at the opulent ceremonial hall.