Museums and Forts of Gujarat Tour
9 Nights / 10 Days
Destination Covered : Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar, Bhuj, Jamnagar, Junagadh, Porbandar, Rajkot, Vadodara (Baroda), Gondal, Palitana, Lothal, Champaner
Tour Activities : Heritage
Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar and Bhuj Tour Itinerary
Ahmedabad and Gujarat are proud to have one of the best textile museums which is also ranked as one of the best specialized textile museums in India. Established in 1949, this Museum housed in the Sarabhai family premises in Shahibaug, is regarded as one of the finest textile museums in the world. The museum displays a magnificent collection of the finest fabrics spun, woven, printed and painted in different parts of India, dating back to the 17th century. It also houses a collection of marble, sandstone and bronze icons, busts and excellent reference library on textiles It attracts a large no. Of tourists both Indian and foreign throughout the year. A part of it is housed in a Haveli - setting adding the old word glamour to the surroundings.
Today morning we drive to Vadodara enroute visiting the world heritage site at Champaner.
Champaner is an ancient fort located at the foothills of Pavagadh. The town derives its name from the Champa tree or from Champaraj - founder of the town, a contemporary of King Vanraj Chavda of Anhilwada. The famous Muslim king of Gujarat, Muhammad Begda captured the fort in late 15th century after a long siege against the Khichi Chauhan Rajputs.
Muhammad Begda decided to establish the new capital of Gujarat at this place in 1484 AD and changed the name of the town to Muhammadabad. It took 23 years to built the town and had a meteoric rise and attained glory as a great town of western India. Many edifices were constructed during these years : bazaars, town squares, royal gardens and water structures, including mosques. It also became a major trading center producing fine silk, woven and dyed textile and sword manufacturing.
Baroda Museum and Art Gallery : The Baroda Museum and Art Gallery also known as the Global Centre of Civilization is widely recognized for its rich collection of sculptures, antiques, paintings and manuscripts. The museum has galleries foused on specific eras and regions around the world, including one for the State of Baroda. The Picture gallery houses more than 1190 paintings European masters, most of them from the private collection of Sayajirao III. Two wings exhibit modern Indian paintings. Sections of the museum display Indian musical instruments and exhibits related to the earth sciences and natural history. One of the major attractions is the 2300 - year - old Egyptian mummy of a princess believed to noteworthy is the 22 m long, blue - whale skeleton, found in 1972 at the mouth of River Mahi. The whale is believed to have been washed ashore in a storm. The Museum Library has a collection of nearly 23,000 books and periodicals on a range of topic. Open 10:30 - 17:00. Entry Indian Rs. 10, Foreigner Rs. 200.
Overnight at Vadodara.
Today we drive to Bhavnagar enroute visiting Lothal.
Lothal : A perfect place to get an insight of the Indus Valley civilization. The most dominating site at Lothal is the massive dockyard spanning an area of 37 meters by 22 meters perhaps the greatest work of Maritime Architecture. Lothal was also famous for its arterial streets, microbes of gold, ivory and coppersmiths' workshops, potteries and underground sanitary drainage. It is located at a distance of 78kms from Ahmedabad. MUSEUM REMAINS CLOSED ON FRIDAYS.
Overnight at Bhavnagar.
Early morning we leave Bhavnagar to Palitana, climb Shetrunjaya hills and later in afternoon drive to Gondal.
Palitana : A 56kms. Drive from Bhavnagar. Palitana lies at the foot of the Shetrunjaya hill, with the Shetrunjaya river flowing to its south. The savred hill rises in a crescendo of magnificent temples - 863 in all - that soar in marble splendour to the top of the hill. The temples were built over an impressive span of 900 years with each generation of pilgrims making its contribution to the shrines of Shetrunjaya. The 600 - metre climb to Shetrunjaya is usually made on foot. Dolis or lift - chairs are also available for the ascent.
Gondal : The Riverside palace at Gondal, a govt. of India classified heritage hotel, and the Orchard Palace in the same town, are two mansion guest houses opened as heritage hotels. The interiors of these properties are appointed with period furniture, antiques and artefacts remniscent of the days of the Raj. The highlight of staying at these properties is that guests can see the royal garages, housing vintage and classic cars, and the Naulakha Palace, which is a festival of stone carvings and houses royal memorabilia including toys of the late 19th and early 20th century, silver caskets that carried messages and gifts for the Maharajah, elephant howdahs and royal portaits. It has an royal saloon suite, which has its own drawing, dining, bedroom and bathroom in a converted railway carriage.
Vintage Car Museum : The Vintage Car Museum, the second of its kind in Gujarat has 32 cars from the world's most reputed brands, such as Ford and Mercedes, dating from 1915 to the 1970s. Open 09:00 - 12:00 and 15:00 - 18:00, daily. Entry Orchard Palace Rs. 20, Royal Rail Saloon Rs. 10 and Vintage Car Museum Indian Rs. 60, Foreigner Rs. 210.
Overnight at Gondal.
Today we drive to Junagadh.
Darbar Hall Museum : Also known as Kacheri Hall, this was the court of the Nawabs. It consists of a palanquin room and galleries displaying pictures, textiles and arms. Open 09:00 - 12:15 and 14:45 - 18:00. Closed Wed, the 2nd 4th Sat of the month and public holidays. Entry Indian Rs. 5, Foreigner Rs. 50.
Uparkot Fort : Famous in bygone times for its virtual inaccessibility, the Upar Kot or Upper Fort is girdled by a wall that is, in some places, over 20m. high. An ornate entrance gateway leads to the ruins. A mosque still stand in a state of preservation. A Nilamtope (canon) was acquired by the Nawab of Junagadh from a Turkish Sultan. There are also two step - wells, Jami Masjid and Buddhist caves in the fort premises.
Ashoka Rock Edicts : On the way to Girnar, fourteen Rock Edicts of the Emperor Ashoka can be seen inscribed on a great boulder. The inscriptions carry Brahmi script in Pali language and dates back to 250BC. On the same rock are inscriptions in Sanskrit.
Maqbara : The mausolea of the Nawabs, the traditional rulers of Junagadh.
Overnight at Junagadh.
Today we drive to Porbandar and visit Kirti Mandir the birth place of Mahatma Gandhi and later we drive to Jamnagar.
Lakhota Lake and Museum : Lakhota in the centre of town, the lake is busy in the evenings, when people come to the surrounding promenade to enjoy the breeze and shop at the come to the surrounding promenade to enjoy the breeze and shop at the impromptu stalls. Parks and gardens, a night market for vegetables, chaat vendors, and a small zoo surround the lake. In the middle is a fort - like structure called Lakhota Tower, connected to the bank by two causeways. Built in the 19th c. As a drought - relief project, the tower now contains the Lakhota Museum.
The Lakhota Museum collection includes a number of 18th c. Artifacts and some stunning specimens salvaged from medieval monuments. A photograph collection from the 1930 s highlights the city's major monuments, putting its faded splendour into perspective. Also on display are coins from various eras that circulated in Jamnagar as well as Jam Vibhaji's elaborate turban. Open 10:30 - 14:00 and 14:30 - 17:30. Closed Wed, 2nd and 4th Sat of every month and public holidays. Entry Indian Rs. 2, Foreigner Rs.50.
Overnight at Jamnagar.
Today we drive to Rajkot.
Kaba Gandhi No Delo : Nestled along a tiny road otherwise packed with shops, Kaba Gandhi No Delo, the former residence of the young Gandhiji when his father served as the diwan to the Rajkot State, reverberates with peace. Kaba was the nickname of Gandhiji's father, Karamchand. They lived there from 1881 - 1887, a period when Gandhiji experimented with smoking and eating meat and resolved never to lie.
Recently restored, this quaint house has an open courtyard and the former rooms have been converted into a photo exhibition of Gandhiji's life, with an emphasis on his years in Rajkot. The collection houses some rare pictures, including Gandhiji with a young Indira Gandhi. The exhibition is in English, Gujarati and Hindi and has a small paintings gallery at the back. Open 09:00 - 19:00, daily.
Watson Museum and Lang Library : Located in the Jubilee Gardens, the Watson Museum is name after a former British political agent of Kathiawad. The collection includes a random assortment of early Indus Valley artifacts, stone tables, sculptures, taxidermy and colonial memorabilia. The neighboring Lang Library houses an extensive collection spanning Kathiawad's history and several old English books from India's colonial period; but you need permission to browse these books. Museum: Open 09:00 - 13:00 and 14:00 - 18:00. Closed Sun, every 2nd and 4th Sat and Public holidays. Entry Indian Rs. 2, Foreigner Rs. 50. Library: Open 08:00 - 16:30.
Overnight at Rajkot.
Today we drive to Bhuj.
The Kutch Museum : Founded by Maharao Khegarji III, it is Gujarat's oldest museum. The Governor of Bombay, Sir James Fergusson, laid the foundation stone of the present museum building in 1884, which was renovated after the earthquake. The collection fearures traditional textiles, metal artifacts, pottery, woodwork, sculpture, archeological objects, inscriptions and more, including the largest collection of inscriptions from the Kshatrapa period. Open 10:00 - 13:00 and 14:30 - 17:30. Closed Wed and 2nd and 4th Sat of the month. Entry Indian Rs. 2, Foreigner Rs. 50.
Bhartiya Sanskriti Darshan Museum : Founded by a forest service officer, Ramsinhji Rathod, who had a passion for Kachchhi folk art had handicrafts, the museum features an array of artifacts from remote regions of Katch collected while Rathod travelled the district on official duty. It has grown into an institution that is dedicated to the promotion and preservation of local crafts and culture. The displays include reconstructed models of rural architecture, paintings, archeological collections, ethnological arts and crafts. The museum's collection of textile art is excellent. Open 10:00 - 13:15 and 14:00 - 17:00, daily. Closed Mon. Entry Indian Rs. 10, Foreigner Rs. 50. Photography is not permitted.
Overnight at Bhuj.
Today we go for a excursion visit to Lakhpat fort.
Lakhpat Fort sits at the point where Kori Creek meets the Great Rann Of Kachchh. It was once a thriving port city with daily revenue believed to exceed on hundred thousand (one lakh) koris, hence the name Lakhpat. The great statesman Fateh Mohammad erected the first fortifications in 1801 and enclosed the entire town within a 7km long fort wall, most of which still stands. The walkway along the northern battlement offers stunning views of the creek merging into the Rann, and has watchtowers at regular intervals.The Indus River once flowed into the Great Rann near Lakhpat, but in 1819, when an earthquake raised a bank, the course shifted westward and altered the landscape of the area. The lively port was abandoned and the town that once brimmed with 10,000 people stands almost completely uninhabited today.
Overnight at Bhuj.
Today we take a flight from Bhuj airport to Mumbai.
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