The innocuous door opened to disclose a secret passage that led to a sq. with 4 properties going through one another. The place one confirmed a colonial contact, one other showcased the native artwork. The third displayed a contact of Persia and the fourth stood vibrant with its Maratha designs. Distinct cultures intertwined, variations merged. Such was the unity in range that I witnessed via this beautiful Ahmedabad heritage stroll.
The heritage stroll in Ahmedabad isn’t nearly seeing what makes it a UNESCO world heritage metropolis. It’s about discovering the amalgamation of various cultures. This Ahmedabad heritage metropolis tour isn’t concerning the previous however about what started again then and continues to thrive even at the moment.
The two km stroll known as the Mandir to Masjid stroll, allowed me to witness the dwelling and respiration heritage of Ahmedabad via the varied pols, the homes inside, landmark heritage websites and locations of worship. It was via this path that I skilled the true essence of this metropolis and that’s the reason I extremely suggest it – even in case you simply have at some point in Ahmedabad.
With this digital Ahmedabad heritage stroll, I hope to familiarize you with the important thing landmarks and sights en route. I shall additionally, be sharing vital suggestions and knowledge that can enable you to plan and ebook your individual tour of the outdated metropolis of Ahmedabad. Nonetheless, earlier than we get began, let’s re-live the historical past of Ahmedabad.
Historical past of Ahmedabad
Ashaval was the identify that this metropolis was referred to as within the 11th century. It got here to be referred to as Karnavati after the Solanki King Karna received it from its Bhil rulers. Karnavati was developed additional and remained with the Solankis until the 13th century after which the Vaghelas took over. It was within the 14th century that Muzaffar Shah of the Delhi Sultanate took over the place. Later, his grandson – Ahmad Shah I modified the identify from Karnavati to Ahmedabad after his personal identify. Ahmad Shah was the one who fortified town partitions, constructed the Bhadra fort and developed this place additional as his capital.
The Muzaffarid dynasty continued their stronghold on Ahmedabad as their capital till the Mughals – particularly Akbar took over the place. Through the Mughal reign, town thrived with its textiles commerce and exports to Europe. It was solely within the 18th century that the rule shifted from the Mughals to the Marathas. The third Anglo-Maratha warfare had the British take over town. They then, made it part of the Bombay presidency. Owing to the booming commerce right here, town acquired quite a lot of significance from the British and got here to be referred to as the Manchester of the East.
Ahmedabad was the middle of many independence actions together with the well-known Dandi march by Gandhiji. Submit-independence, it was chosen because the capital of Gujarat and since then, has develop into of the important thing cities of India. It has had its share of pure calamities just like the 2001 earthquake and varied communal riots just like the post-partition and the 2002 debacle. Regardless of that, it has bounced again and grown – to be voted because the third finest metropolis to stay in in 2020.
With such a colourful historical past, it’s not stunning that the outdated metropolis of Ahmedabad was given the UNESCO World Heritage tag in 2017. One can find that the heritage stroll in Ahmedabad is an ideal testomony to this!
What’s one of the best ways to succeed in Ahmedabad?
Ahmedabad has a world airport, making it very simple to get right here. There are quite a few flights connecting all the most important cities of India. Apart from air journey, you will get right here by street or rail. As soon as in Ahmedabad, for the heritage stroll, get into a neighborhood bus for Kalupur or rent an auto or cab to succeed in the Swaminarayan temple. That is the beginning level of the heritage stroll.
What are the various kinds of heritage walks in Ahmedabad?
There are literally two main heritage walks in Ahmedabad. These are as follows –
– The Morning heritage stroll . Additionally, known as the Mandir to Masjid stroll. It consists of 22 factors of curiosity and begins from the Kalupur Swaminarayan temple. It ends on the Jama Masjid
– Night time heritage stroll in Ahmedabad – This consists of 16 factors and begins on the Siddi Saiyyed mosque. It terminates on the Chandla Ol.
These walks are carried out by the Heritage stroll Ahmedabad with the assist of AMC (Ahmedabad Municipal Company). They’re popularly referred to as AMC heritage walks. Along with the identical, the Heritage walks Ahmedabad workforce additionally, affords one other stroll known as the Jain Amdavad Heritage Stroll. This stroll contains 11 websites. It begins on the Ashtapadji Deraser and finishes on the Shantinath Deraser.
One other common stroll via the outdated metropolis is the Home of MG Ahmedabad Heritage stroll. They’ve two walks – the morning breakfast one which begins at Mangaldas ni Haveli and ends on the Home of MG and the evening stroll from the Home of MG to Manek Chowk. Each these are shorter in period as in comparison with the AMC stroll however do cowl some main websites within the outdated metropolis.
The way to ebook an Ahmedabad heritage stroll?
For the AMC walks, you possibly can ebook on-line utilizing this specific hyperlink. Alternately, you possibly can mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to order your spot. Listed below are the contact numbers, in case you want to name and get extra particulars
Toll Free Quantity – 1800 233 9008
Different numbers – +91 98250 91049, +91 98251 25920
There are two packages out there for reserving. The luxurious bundle features a meal whereas the usual bundle is simply the stroll.
For the Home of MG heritage stroll, you possibly can mail the lodge on email@example.com or name them on +91 79 25506946
What’s the value of a heritage stroll in Ahmedabad?
The AMC heritage walks are charged as under
Customary bundle fee per particular person – INR 200 for Indians and INR 300 for Foreigners
Luxurious bundle charges per particular person – INR 350 for Indians and INR 450 for Foreigners
There isn’t a digital camera cost
The Jain heritage stroll is charged INR 500 per particular person.
How lengthy are the heritage walks Ahmedabad?
Each the AMC walks – morning and evening – are round 2 hours 30 minutes when it comes to period. They each stretch for round 2 km within the outdated metropolis.
The Ahmedabad heritage walks by Home of MG are shorter in period and distance. The morning one is round 2 hours for 1.5 km whereas the evening heritage stroll covers lower than 1 km and takes round 1 hour.
The map of Ahmedabad heritage stroll & the important thing sightseeing factors
The Mandir to Masjid path that I did contains 22 factors – all of which you’ll be able to hint on this Ahmedabad heritage stroll map. We began at 7:30 from the Swaminarayan Mandir and accomplished the stroll round 10:30 on the Jama Masjid. Although the tempo was fairly respectable, (not too quick nor too sluggish), the sheer variety of issues to see at every level ended up creating the standard frenzy that I really feel at heritage locations. Simply so that you just don’t get frenzied, I shall be stating the important thing sights via this digital Ahmedabad heritage metropolis tour. That manner, you’ll know what to anticipate whenever you embark by yourself journey.
Begin of our Heritage stroll Ahmedabad – Swaminarayan temple in Kalupur
Kalupur Swaminarayan temple is the proper begin to a really partaking Ahmedabad outdated metropolis tour. This temple is not going to solely interact you with its tales and rituals however can also be, a delight from an architectural perspective. The gate itself is a medley of architectural kinds. One can find the British contact with its lamps in entrance of it. The carvings on the Gujarati girl on the highest and the Rajasthani and Maratha males alongside its arched doorway give it that very native really feel. The arch itself is Mughal model – thus including one other cultural aspect to the entire theme.
This Swaminarayan temple is the primary of many around the globe and was established within the 1800s by Swaminarayan ji himself. He was given a land grant by the British Imperial Authorities to construct this temple. The temple premises consists of the primary temple together with a Haveli for the primary Acharya and dwelling lodging for the Sankya Yogini (girls who’ve taken the celibacy vow). Along with that, there may be lodging for the devotees and a well being clinic as nicely.
The Nar-Narayana temple is open from 6 am to 7 pm each day. As you enter it, you’ll be stunned by the colourful Burma teak wooden pillars, arches and cornices. Floral designs cowl the monocolored ceilings that offset its coloured environment.
Fairly like the opposite Krishna temples around the globe, there are quite a few darshans and poojas carried out all through the day. The place is handled as his palace – fairly like what you noticed within the Dwarkadhish temple and the Udupi Sri Krishna temple Thus, relying on the hour of the day, he’s dressed for a job and that turns into the darshan of that hour. After I visited the Swaminarayan temple Kalupur, it was Shringar darshan, whereby the Lord was getting dressed to begin his day.
Kavi Dalpatram Chowk
A considerate poet sitting on his Otla (patio) staring into area!
That is undoubtedly how Kavi Dalpatram should have been when composing his well-known poems. The scene has been frozen in time via a really elaborate statue of him, proper close to his home. The home not exists however has been re-created on a wall as a memorial. The statue – nicely, that could be a piece of artwork that you could observe.
From his intense expression to his method of sitting with one barefoot crossed and the opposite on the bottom – the bronze statue is sort of life-like. Additionally, observe his garments – the artist has recreated the everyday Gujarati designs (Kathiawadi to be exact) on his scarf.
Kavi Dalpatram is famend for his promotion of Gujarati as a language. Therefore, this memorial is very revered and even at the moment, the place celebrates his contribution to Gujarati literature by the use of stay performances and recitations of his poems.
This attraction was closed for renovation once we did our stroll. The information, nonetheless, did pause right here to inform us the importance of it. The place marks a heritage Calico mill arrange within the 1960s. The dome was impressed by the designs of Buckminster Fuller.
Previous the Calico dome begins the precise spotlight of the heritage stroll Ahmedabad – the maze of Pols. Pols in Ahmedabad could be finest defined as heritage housing communities. In fashionable parlance, they are often in comparison with the up to date gated housing societies besides – on this case, every pol consisted of households of the identical caste or faith and even occupation. Every pol is self-contained with its personal group nicely, a chabutara (chook feeder) and a spot of worship. The central chowk of every pol performs the position of a group middle – doubling up as a taking part in area for the youngsters, a gossip nook for the ladies and a gathering place for the elders.
This a part of the stroll acquired me actually nostalgic. Strolling previous these delas (giant wood gates and doorways) I recalled my very own visits as a baby. Again then, all the things appeared like a lifestyle – these cows meandering close to the wells by my ancestral house, taking part in kho-kho within the sq. and distributors coming in to promote sarees beneath the massive tree within the courtyard. I simply assumed that what how life was in all places. Nonetheless, the Ahmedabad heritage stroll made me see all this with new eyes. All of a sudden, I spotted I used to be part of this very dwelling and respiration heritage and in some unspecified time in the future in my life, had truly lived. It’s superb how you are taking these small issues without any consideration solely to later notice how unique and epic they’re.
The pols are proper subsequent to one another, separated by tiny sheri (lanes) and secret passages. All the format is a beautiful instance of how there could be unity in range. Proper subsequent to a Hindu pol, you will see a Muslim one after which a Jain one – seamless but distinct in their very own method. Sharing my favourite elements from the varied pols I noticed.
Haja Patel Ni Pol – Kala Ramji Mandir
Kala Ramji Mandir is a house temple on this Maratha pol. The temple is over 400 years outdated and is devoted to Lord Ram. The shrine accommodates the idols of Lord Ram, Sita and Lakshman. All of them are manufactured from Kasauti stone which is black in colour. This stone is normally used to verify the purity of gold. Owing to this materials of building and its black colour, the temple is named Kala Ramji temple – Kala referring to the black colour.
The temple idols are stated to have been discovered buried by a resident known as Hariprasad. It’s believed these idols signify the exile interval of Lord Ram. The one factor that you just can not miss right here is the carved wood pillars of the temple. They did transport me again to the Newari artwork that I noticed on the varied durbar squares of Nepal.
Shantinath Ni Pol
Proper earlier than you enter this pol, you’ll spot this tall wind vane construction – besides that it isn’t one. The construction is a air flow pipe that represents the course wherein the sewage pipes within the pols are positioned. Stroll previous this and also you enter a really picturesque sq. with an elaborate chabutara and fashionable wall artwork.
Across the pol sq., you possibly can admire the standard heritage properties. Most of them are made utilizing wooden and have intricately carved doorways, home windows, pillars and brackets. The wood buildings had been a saving grace through the 2001 earthquake. Evidently owing to the style of building and the selection of fabric aka wooden, this space didn’t endure a lot harm.
An vital landmark right here is the stunning Shantinathji Mandir. It is a Jain temple with beautiful wood interiors. Sadly, it was a spot that I needed to rush previous. I spend an excessive amount of time within the sq. capturing the sights and missed my flip to click on the temple. 🙁 However that could be a cause sufficient for me to return and determine all of it out.
From this pol to the subsequent, you need to journey via a secret passage. These passages are frequent between the pols and function a protected exit for the residents in case of assaults. The passages are hidden behind regular-looking doorways and therefore, are fairly tough to search out.
Kuvavalo Khancho – my favourite a part of the Ahmedabad heritage stroll
As you emerge from the key passage and switch left, you’ll come throughout a really distinctive area. This was considered one of my favorites on this Ahmedabad heritage metropolis tour. Known as the Kuvavalo Khancho (means passage subsequent to a nicely), this tiny area has 4 properties with distinct architectural influences going through one another. The one with crimson bricks and colonial arches displays British affect whereas the one going through it has intricately carved Persian brackets.
Search for a house with photographs of a Gujarati girl and a British soldier above its door. This specific house is an ideal fusion of Gujarati and the British model of structure. This displays on its doorways and home windows as nicely.
The ultimate house is a vibrantly painted home of a Maratha household. Right here too, above the door is the face of its Maratha proprietor. This sq. is an ideal reflection of the united spirit of Ahmedabad. From right here, as you progress to the subsequent Pol, you’ll cross via lanes with properties which have holes on their partitions. These are known as Parrot holes and had been intentionally left for the birds to make their nest, given the absence of bushes round them.
Doshivada Ni Pol & Ashtapadji Deraser
This specific space has some actually stunning mansions. Stained glass home windows and carved teak wooden brackets with colourful doorways – each beckons you to come back and pose in entrance of them. The European affect is fairly apparent right here. These properties belong to the jeweler and goldsmith group (Zaveri). Fairly just a few of them had been locked and deserted. These acquired me considering of the deserted mansions of Chettinad and the Havelis of Bikaner.
One vital cease on this pol is the Ashtapadji Deraser (Jain temple). That is the one place in the whole heritage stroll of Ahmedabad that doesn’t permit any images. The attractive marble temple felt like a mini model of the Ranakpur Jain temple with its beautiful carvings. You will notice quite a few dancing women and musicians etched on its ceiling and pillars. The temple was made within the 1850s by a wealthy Jain service provider – Sheth Maganlal Karamchand. The temple additionally has a rainwater harvesting system that your information will probably be completely satisfied to indicate you.
Harkunvar Shethani Ni Haveli
This Haveli bowled me over with its intricate doorways and lengthy balconies. Apparently, this specific haveli has 60 odd rooms and one of many longest carved wood brackets in Ahmedabad. The carvings on it are influenced by Chinese language designs. The haveli is over 180 years outdated.
From this level on, as one walks in direction of Fernandez bridge, you’ll come throughout a brand new set of layouts – the Ols.
Thus far the pols had been solely about house and residential necessities. The Ols include each residential and industrial buildings. In reality, these are only one above the opposite. On the bottom flooring, you will notice retailers and places of work whereas the higher flooring are residences of the homeowners. As our information stated – “The Work from Residence idea isn’t new. It has been in apply for hundreds of years within the Ahmedabad Ols”.
Outstanding in these Ols are two main areas – one is the Fernandez bridge the place you will see bookstores sharing outdated and new books and the second is the Chandla Ol. The latter is the place you will see quite a few retailers promoting pooja gadgets.
Ahmedabad Inventory Trade
The 2nd oldest inventory alternate of India falls nicely on this path of Ahmedabad heritage stroll. The constructing sports activities a picture of King George proper on the highest. One take a look at it and you’ll simply establish its British architectural model. The constructing is not used and has been categorised as an vital heritage website of Ahmedabad.
Reverse to this constructing is the doorway to 1 extra pol – the Muharat Pol. Muharat means an auspicious second or starting. This pol is the primary and the oldest pol in Ahmedabad, constructed within the late 1400s. The Jain group settled into this one however presently, there are not any main residences right here. At present, it has over 100 jewellery retailers.
Vegetable market within the morning, jewellery market by the day and a meals road at evening – Manek chowk is one well-known sq. of Ahmedabad. Belief me after I say that when you’ve got visited this through the day after which later come again at evening, you received’t even know you might be in the identical place.
It isn’t simply this that makes it an vital attraction on this heritage stroll in Ahmedabad. Additionally it is, its historical past. There’s a temple devoted to a Hindu saint – Manek baba, after whom this space was named. It was this saint who helped Ahmed Shah I to construct the Bhadra Fort and fortify Ahmedabad. Later, he took samadhi (attained divination) and that’s the place a small temple was constructed. Even at the moment, on Vijaydashmi, there’s a flag hoisted on this temple. The temple is near Fernandez bridge.
Badshah no Haziro
Badshah no Haziro is the final resting place of the founding father of Ahmedabad – Ahmed Shah I. The beautiful lattice-windowed constructing is house to not simply him however his son and grandson too. Since girls aren’t allowed contained in the vault, I might solely stand on the grand door and take a peek. Even from the doorway, I might see a powerful ceiling and the enchanting play of sunshine and shadows from the lattice home windows. I’m fairly certain, if I had been to go inside, I might have discovered different treasures.
Near the Badshah’s resting place, there may be one for his queens. That is known as Rani no Haziro. I consider, this too is price visiting on account of its Indo Islamic structure. Sadly, time was not sufficient for me to get there and see it.
Finish of our heritage stroll in Ahmedabad – Jama Masjid
The Jumma Masjid or Jama Masjid gave a excessive observe to the tip of my heritage stroll Ahmedabad. It’s a place that wants a little bit extra time than what I might spare. Constructed-in 1424 by Ahmed Shah I, this was the biggest mosque in India in these days. It was initially constructed just for his household however later, was opened to the general public. The Indo-Saracenic model of this mosque is what led to a brand new structure that’s termed Gujarati structure.
The mosque is constructed utilizing yellow sandstone and sports activities a number of Hindu and Jain motifs alongside its partitions and pillars. Initially, I assumed that just like the Qutub Minar advanced, this mosque too may need been constructed from items of destroyed Hindu and Jain temples. Nonetheless, my information on this tour clarified that these designs had been deliberate and made particularly for the mosque.
Standing in entrance of the three main arches of the prayer corridor, I might spot the everyday Hindu Kalash (pot) and the sacred Ashoka tree carved onto its partitions. Stroll into its pillared corridor and you’ll be amazed by the intricately designed ceilings. If in case you have ever been to a few of the Jain temples just like the Ranakpur one and even the Ashtapadi Deraser on this Ahmedabad heritage stroll, it is possible for you to to simply see the inspiration that results in these ceilings.
Speaking of pillars, there are 260 of them within the Jama Masjid. This itself is uncommon as typical mosques don’t even have pillars. Pay particular consideration to the 2 which are proper close to the doorway of the mosque. The pair are actually known as “Shaking minarets” after they misplaced their peak through the earthquakes in Gujarat.
The prayer corridor of Jami Masjid is roofed with 15 domes, with the central one being the most important. It has 5 mihrabs (semi round stones on the wall that face the course of Mecca). I couldn’t get inside to see them as girls aren’t allowed past a degree – however I’m informed that the lattice home windows round it add to the wonder inside.
All the courtyard is made with white marble and proper within the middle is a beautiful ablution tank. There are beautiful arched passages across the courtyard the place you will see Arabic calligraphy on the partitions. I’m certain, if I had stayed a little bit longer, I may need discovered some extra fascinating points to this mosque.
By now, you possibly can fairly relate to my preliminary assertion of how this Ahmedabad heritage stroll brings out the fantastic thing about range within the metropolis. It’s this range and the seamless amalgamation of cultures that’s the true essence of this metropolis. Additionally, you will, notice how frenzied you will get with the main points – a part of which I’ve tried to resolve by stating the highlights to deal with. So, don’t get misplaced, and ensure you ebook your self for this tour – even in case you simply have at some point in Ahmedabad.
Journey and Images suggestions
- Comfy and flat footwear are an absolute should on this stroll. Attempt to put on easy-to-remove footwear as you may need to take them off at varied non secular spots.
- Please put on one thing that covers your shoulders or maintain a shawl useful for a similar. Males ought to keep away from shorts. It is a norm to go to the quite a few locations of worship alongside the heritage stroll Ahmedabad
- Be sure you attain your assembly place on the reporting time.
- It’s best to maintain your prime lens or wide-angle lens loaded onto your digital camera. The lanes are fairly slender and it’s a little arduous to seize all of it and on the similar time sustain with the information. I might have like to compose just a few of those in a different way however needed to let go with a purpose to keep tempo with the information.
- Images is allowed in all of the temples besides the Ashtapadji Deraser. There isn’t a further cost for a similar.
- Not one of the points of interest on the stroll are ticketed.
- There are useful signal boards at every of the pols, normally close to the doorway of the pol. They provide you a little bit temporary of the place.
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P.S: I visited Ahmedabad on invite by India Tourism, Mumbai and Gujarat Tourism
Popularly known as a Stressed Ball of Vitality. My Mother refuses to entertain my complaints about my equally stressed daughter & assures my husband that I used to be born with a journey bug.
I’m a Submit-Graduate in Advertising and marketing by qualification and a journey blogger by ardour. Apart from journey, I take pleasure in images and in case you don’t discover me at my desk, I might be out taking part in badminton or swimming or simply working. I consider in planning for each lengthy weekend via the yr. And after I can not journey bodily, I journey nearly via this journey weblog. My journey tales have additionally, acquired revealed on varied web sites and magazines together with BBC Journey, Lonely Planet India and Jetwings. I’ve not too long ago revealed my first ebook – When Locations Come Alive – a set of tales which are primarily based on legends, landscapes, artwork and tradition of a spot which is out there in each book and paperback format.