Bhadra and Teen Darwaza, Jama Masjid, Tombs
of Ahmed Shah and His Queens, Ahmed Shah's Mosque, Sidi Saiyad's Mosque,
Rani Rupmati's Mosque, Rani Sipri's Mosque, Sabarmati Ashram, Museums etc.
Best Time To Visit :
October to March
the political hub of Gujarat is also one of the major industrial cities of
India. Due to its a number of textile industries, Ahmedabad has also been
called the 'Manchester of the East.' An old city, Ahmedabad had witnessed a
number of periods of grandeur followed by decline. Originally founded by
Ahmed Shah in 1411, in the 17th century the city was thought to be one of
the finest cities in India. In 1615 AD, Sir Thomas Roe, the renowned English
ambassador, judged Ahmedabad 'a goodly city as large as London.' However in
the 18th century the city went through a period of decline. Later the city's
industrial strength once again raised it up and from 1915 it became famous
due to Mahatma Gandhi. Today the city sports a cosmopolitan look and has a
number of modern as well as old attractions for travellers. In the city you
will see some of the finest examples of Islamic architecture in India and a
number of other interesting buildings both religious and secular. Ahmedabad
is also one of the finest places to get a close look of the Indo-Saracenic
Style, a blend of Hindu and Islamic architectural styles. Besides, the
swanky multiplexes, beautifully-lit shopping malls, upmarket entertainment,
fitness clubs, convention centres, bowling alleys and numerous eating
joints, offering a wonderful vacationing experience to tourists. So, visit
this historic city of Gujarat for getting a close look of ancient
architectural patters and several other new attractions and return you home
some never before experiences.
How to Reach Ahmedabad
: Ahmedabad airport is 10 km north of the downtown
Eliis Bridge/Ashram Road area and it has both the domestic and international
terminals. Flights of Indian Airlines, Jet Airways and Air Deccan connect
Ahmedabad to the major cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore,
Hyderabad etc. A number of flights of Air India and other airlines go to the
Gulf countries and to other destinations via Ahmedabad. From the airport you
can take a pre-paid taxi or auto-rickshaw to the city centre.
By Train :
Ahmedabad railway station is connected with
important parts of the country through several express and superfast trains.
From Delhi Rajdhani Express, Ashram Express and Delhi Mail run to Ahmedabad.
Shatabdi and Gujarat Mail ply to Ahmedabad from Mumbai.
By Bus :
Ahmedabad is connected by national highways with
other cities of the state and the neighbouring state. Regular buses are
available to Ahmedabad from major cities of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya
Pradesh and Rajasthan. From Ahmedabad the Government and Private operators
have buses for Jamnagar, Rajkot, Mumbai, Udaipur, Jaipur and Nathdwara.
Local Tranport :
For local transport private tourist
taxis and metered auto-rickshaws are available. Taxi and auto fares are
negotiable and you can hire them from airport, railway station or any other
place in the city.
Places Where You Can Stay
Ahmedabad is dotted with a variety of hotels ranging from five star deluxe
to standard hotels. Hotels in Ahmedabad are equipped with all the modern
amenities and they offer pleasant stay to guests. In fact, when you stay in
the hotels of the city you will feel yourself at home. Here is a list of
some of the hotels that a located in Ahmedabad.
Deluxe Hotels :
Le Meridien (Khanpur), Hotel Taj
Residency Ummed (Hansol), Hotel Cama Park Plaza (Khanpur) and Fortune Hotel
Landmark by Welcomgroup (Ashram Road).
Standard Hotels :
Hotel Comfort Inn Sunset (Hansol),
Inder Residency (Ellisbridge), Quality Inn Rivera (Khanpur), The Chambers
(Ellisbridge), The Westend (Ellisbridge), Hotel Fortune.
Tourist Attractions in Ahmedabad
Bhadra and Teen Darwaza :
An ancient citadel, Bhadra was
built in 1411 AD by Ahmed Shah and later is was named after Bhadra, an
incarnation of Goddess Kali. Just infront of the citadel is the Teen Darwaza
or Triple Gateway, from where the sultans used to watch the processions from
the palace to the Jama Masjid. Nowadays this citadel is used for government
offices and is not of much interest.
Jama Masjid :
Jama Masjid is situated at a short distance
from Teen Darwaza, beside Gandhi Road. One of the biggest and oldest mosques
in India, Jama Masjid was built by Ahmed Shah in 1424. Jama Masjid is a
built in the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture, a blend of Hindu and
Islamic styles. You can see the Hindu style of architecture on the walls and
the niches of the mosque. In early days most of the mosque building was made
from items salvaged from demolished Hindu and Jain temples. It is believed
that a massive black slab by the main arch is actually the base of a Jain
idol, buried upside down.
Tombs of Ahmed Shah and His Queens :
Just outside the
east gate of the Jama Masjid lies the tomb of Ahmed Shah, the founder of the
city. The cenotaphs of his son and grandson also lies in this tomb with
perforated stone windows. Women are not allowed to enter into the central
chamber. Across the street is the tomb of his queens on a raised platform.
Shah's Mosque :
Built in the year 1414 AD, this was one of the earliest
mosques in Ahmedabad. It is believed that this mosque was erected on the
site of a Hindu temple and the parts of the temple were used in the
construction of this mosque.
Sidi Saiyad's Mosque :
A small mosque, Sidi Saiyad's
mosque once formed part of the city wall and is located close to the river
end of Relief Road. Built by Sidi Saiyid, a slave of Ahmed Shah the mosque
is known for its beautiful carved stone windows. Here the branches of a tree
are intricately intertwined to form the complete window.
Rani Rupmati's Mosque :
Built in between 1430 AD and 1440
AD , this mosque was named after the Sultan's Hindu wife Rani Rapmati. Like
other mosques of Ahmedabad this mosque displays elements of Hindu and Islami
design (Indo-Saracenic style). Due to disastrous earthquake of 1819 the
minarets of the mosque were partially brought down.
Rani Sipri's Mosque :
A little south of the city centre
is the Rani Sipri's Mosque built in the year 1514 AD. Rani Sipri's mosque is
another excellent example of the blending of the Hindu and Islamic
architectural styles. Due to its beautiful and well executed design, this
mosque is also known as the Masjid-e-Nagira or 'Jewel of a mosque'. Rani
Sipri's mosque is said to have been constructed by a a wife of Sultan
Mehmood Begada after he executed their son for some minor misdemeanour.
Sidi Bashir's Mosque :
Sidi Bashir Mosque is south of the
railway station and is famous for its Jhula Minar or shaking minarets. When
one minaret is shaken the other rocks in response to vibrations, this was
believed to be a protection against damage from earthquake.
Raj Bari's Mosque :
Like Sidi Bashir's Mosque, this
mosque also has shaking minarets, one of which was demolished by an
Englishman in an unsuccessful attempt to find out how it worked.
Hathee Singh Temple
: A Jain Temple, Hathee Singh Temple
is located just outside the Delhi Gate, to the north of the old city. Built
in 1848 AD, this temple is dedicated to Dharamanath, the 15th Jina or Jain
Step Well of Dada Hari :
Step wells or Baolis are a
unique creation of Gujarat and this in one of the best. Built in 1499 the
depths of well were remaining cool even on the hottest day of the summer
season. Now this step well is almost neglected but it is still an
interesting place with galleries above the well and a small portico at
Kankaria Lake :
Kankaria Lake is an artificial lake and
it was constructed in the year 1451. The lake has 34 sides, each 60 mts long
and it is now a picnic spot. Close to the lake are the zoo and the
children's park. The Ghattamendal pavilion in the centre houses an aquarium.
Sabarmati Ashram :
Just 6 kms from the city centre lies
the Sabramati Ashram. Situated on the west bank of the Sabarmati river,
Sabarmati Ashram was Mahatma Gandhi's headquarters during his struggle for
India's freedom. Founded in 1918 the Ashram still produces handicrafts, hand
made paper and spinning wheels. From Sabarmati Ashram Mahatma Gandhi began
his popular 'Dandi March' to the sea to protest against the Salt Tax imposed
by the British. Mahatma Gandhi's spartan living quarters are preserved as a
small museum and there is a photo exhibition of the major events in his
life. A Sound and Light show is organised here on Sundays, Tuesdays,
Thursdays and Saturday evening at 8.15 pm.
Ahmedabad is home to a number of museums,
including the Calico Museum of Textiles. Considered as one of the finest
museums of the world, this museum has a fine collection of antique and
modern textiles including rare tapestries, wall hangings and costumes and
old weaving machines. Another museum, the N C Mehta Museum of Miniatures is
located at Sanskar Kendra, Paldi and it has an excellent exhibit of of the
various schools of Indian miniature paintings. Shreyas Folk Museum has the
exhibits of folk arts and crafts of Gujarat. Other noted museums are the
National Institute of Design, the Tribal Research and Training Institute
Museum and a Philatelic Museum.
Tourist Attractions Around Ahmedabad
Located 10 kms south-east of Ahmedabad, Batwa has
tombs of a renowned Muslim saint and his son. Here you will also see an
Adalaj Vav :
One of the finest Gujarati step wells,
Adalaj Vav lies 19 km north of Ahmedabad and it has carvings depicting
delicate motifs of flowers and birds. Constructed by Queen Rudabai in 1499,
this well provided a cool and secluded retreat during the summer season.
Nalsarovar Bird Sanctuary :
Located around 54 km from
Ahmedabad, the Nalsarovar Bird Sanctuary is home to huge numbers of
flamingoes and other avian species. Here you may hire a boat to watch the
birds and to reach the lake islands for picnic.
: A site of great interest for archaeologists, Lothal is located about 80 km
south of Ahmedabad and is. The citadel of Lothal represent an example of
Harappan town planning which stood here 4,500 years ago. You will see an
acropolis with paved baths, a lowed town with humble homes, coppersmiths
workshops, pottery sheds and bead factories.
Cambay, the old sea port of Ahmedabad is
situated 92 kms south end of the city, at the northern end of the Gulf of
Cambay. During the height of Muslim power in Gujarat the entire region was
called as Cambay. Later in 1583, the first ambassadors arrived from Britain
and they bore letters from Queen Elizabeth addresses to Akbar, the 'King of
Built by King Bhimdev I in the 11th century,
the Sun Temple of Modhera is mostly in ruins. The temple has some
relationship with the later and famously known, Sun Temple of Konark in the
state of Orissa.
Situated close to Mehsana, Unjha is famous for
the marriage customs of the Kadwakanbis who live in this region.
Located about 120 km north-west of Ahmedabad,
Patan was an ancient Hindu capital before being sacked by Mahmud Ghazni in
1024 AD. Now Patan is a centre for the manufacture of beautifully designed
Patola silk sarees.
Shopping in Ahmedabad
For shopper's Ahmedabad is a paradise, the city has a number of shopping
centres where you will find everything from A to Z. Visit the famous markets
Rani no Haziro, Dani Limda and Manek Chowk for antiques, beadwork,
brassware, spice trays, silver, wood carvings and traditional textiles.
Ratanpole is also a famous market for jewellery and silverware. For
handicraft shopping visit Gurjari Emporium and Khadi Bhandar on Ashram Road
or head for the handicraft shops of the Kamdhenu Complex near Ambawadi or
the pavement bazaar along Law Garden where artisans work on embroidery. Law
Garden Night Market is a perfect place for those who want some fun alongwith
shopping in the evening. Here you will find stalls selling wares brought
from Kutch and Saurashtra. In the market there are several rows of
traditional garment on display like cholis, skirts, embroidered wall
hangings and costume jewellery. Adani's Hypermarket is the new attraction
for shoppers and it is every urban householder's dream shop. Located at
Mithakali near the city centre, the two-storeyed hypermarket has everything
except footwear and apparel.