Gujarat’s rich history and culture come alive till date through the many historical monuments and sites that the state has. The beauty of Gujarat lies in its rich past. Fascinating tales and historical incidents from yesteryear make Gujarat an interesting state to visit. Many of the historical sites that Gujarat has dates back to the times of the Vedas or are as old as Indus Valley civilization. The historical places of Gujarat offer a brilliant revival of history with some amazing inputs from modernity.
The top historical places of Gujarat may be listed as follows:
Champaner-Pavagadh, also jointly referred to as an archaeological park, has been recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites. The history and culture of these two places are as old as civilization itself. These two ancient historic cities were the nerve centres of civilization for many years but gradually faded in importance and got lost to the ages. Today the cities bear a vivid testimony to many historical eras such as the Vedic period, Rajput age, Maratha period, Mughal era and the British era. The cities are dotted with numerous ornate monuments which reflect a fusion of Hindu and Islamic architectures. A visit to Champaner-Pavagadh historic cities will let you walk back in time and explore the past.
Sabarmati ashram in Ahmedabad is a much-revered place for Gandhian and passionate country-lovers. Gandhi resided in this ashram and spearheaded the Indian struggle for freedom from this renowned political epicentre. The ashram stands along the Sabarmati River and is also differently referred to as Satyagraha ashram and Harijan ashram.
Dholavira, a part of the 4500 years old Indus Valley Civilization is an important excavation site. Dholavira offers enchanting glimpses into the ancient civilization of the past. Many archaeological marvels excavated at Dholavira will offer you an idea about the enormous development that the civilization underwent during its times. Kutch desert wildlife sanctuary lies in close proximity to Dholavira and is one of the prime tourist attractions.
Lothal is an archaeological site as well as an old city lying about 87kms away from the business hub of Ahmedabad. Lothal had been a part of the Harappan civilization. Full-fledged, well-developed settlements were present in Lothal during the Harappan age. Today you can catch a glimpse of one of the most ancient cultures of the world; i.e. the Harappan culture at Lothal. The culture though now in total ruins still speaks aloud the tale of a glorious civilization of antiquity. The age of the site may be traced back to 2nd millennium BC. Lothal archaeological site falls within Gujarat’s Ahmedabad district in the village of Sarajwala.
Mahabat Maqbara is an important historical monument located in Gujarat’s Junagadh city. The Maqbara came into being in the year 1892 and was used by the Junagadh Nawabs as their presidential palace.
Kirti Toran in Gujarat’s Vadnagar is also differently referred to as Kirti Stambha. It is an ornate temple arch of semi-religious or community import. It is a beautiful testimony to the architectural splendour of the Solanki era.
Bhujiyo Kotho is the five-storied ancient watch tower situated along Jamnagar’s Lakhota lake. The tower has a beautiful peacock-shaped water tank atop it. The tower was used for protection purpose in the historic times. The walls of the tower’s first floor have holes on them. These holes were used for shooting enemies down in the ancient times. One could catch panoramic views of the entire city of Jamnagar from the tower top.
Kandla port is one of the most important ports of India. The port stands on Kandla stream. This port was a joint venture between British Government and Maharaj Shri Khengarji- III around the 19th century. The port has a capacity of treating 24000 metric tonnes of dry Cargo per day.
Rani ki Vav
Rani Ki Vav is an architectural masterpiece constructed by queen Udayamati in the memory and honour of King Bhimdev I. It is a step well-constructed around 1063 AD. Waters from River Saraswati flowing beside the well was used to fill this well once upon a time. Now the well has gone dry as the river has gone dry too. This iconic historical site of Gujarat is situated in Patan. The walls of the step well are adorned with intricate sculptures that portray marvellous artistry and rich history. Maru-Gurjara architectural style has been employed to build the step well that exhibits real complex techniques and smart engineering.
Laxmi Vilas Palace
Laxmi Vilas Palace is a royal and opulent structure situated in Gujarat’s Vadodara town. This luxurious palatial building with ornate carvings came into being in the year 1980 under the initiative of Maharaja Sayaji Rao III. 60 Lakhs was spent to build this monument around the 19th century. Indo Saracenic architectural style is reflected through the architecture of this monument. Darbar hall of this palace will leave you thoroughly mesmerized. Today this hall is often hired by my music companies or movie production houses for concerts or shooting respectively.
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