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About Ahmedabad City

Ahmedabad is one of the fastest growing cities in India. The Solanki Ruler , King Karandev 1 established the city called "Karnavati". In 1411 Sultan Ahmed Shah conquered Karnavati to serve as the capital of the Gujarat Sultanate and after his name Karnavati was renamed to Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad is situated on the bank of river Sabarmati where in 1915 Mahatma Gandhi came from South Africa and established Ashram. Up to 1970 this was the capital of Gujrat.

Ahmedabad is one of the major centre of education, information technology and scientific industries in Gujrat. But still it remains the cultural heart of Gujarat.

Places of Tourist Interest :

There are many places of interest to visit at Ahmedabad. Here are the some of the major places of interest to visit :

Step Wells (Dada Hari Vav & Adalaj Vav )
Vav means a step well. In era of the Sultanate, the authorities use to develop wells for conserving water regarding drinking purposes, in the hot summer months travelers used to use as a place to rest or to drink water. The finest example are Dada Hari Vav and the Adalaj Vav. The interiors of these step wells are the finest architectural structures of Gujarat.

Sabarmati Ashram or Gandhi Ashram
Established by Mahatma Gandhi after coming from South Africa. Mahatma Gandhi stayed here for a longer time during his non violent struggle for India's independence. In 1930, that the Mahatma began his famous "Dandi March" to the sea to protest against the Salt Tax imposed by the British. Here still one can get sense of his life, the history of the movement and those who worked alongside him, at the Gandhi Smarak Sangrahalaya, a small museum that includes excellent pictorial and written documentation, a library of Gandhian literature and paintings, and an immense archive of letters written by Gandhiji.

Sidi Sayeed Mosque
The mosque of Sidi Sayed is one of the most prominent mosques in the Ahmedabad city. Built in 1573, it is the last of the major mosques to be built in Ahmedabad under the Mughal rule. This skillfully carved mosque is very well known due to its splendor. The carved jaalis in the windows of the western wall are known worldwide. the craftsmanship of this mosque places it on a level nearly unequaled in the world.

Akshardham Temple
Akshardham temple is majestic, intricately carved stone structure. It is built in 6000 tonnes of pink sandstone and not a bit of steel has been used. The temple is 108 ft in height, 240 ft in length and 131 ft in width. Inspiring episodes and incidents from the glorious history of Sanatan Dharma are presented in sound and light form for the benefit of the visitors. It is a perfect mix of modernity and ancient values.

Calico Museum of Textiles
Calico Museum of Textiles is one of the finest museums to be set up in India and well known in the world for its distinguished and comprehensive collection of textiles and artifacts. This is one of the major tourist attractions in Ahmedabad. This museum was inaugurated by the then Prime Minister of India, Jawahar Lal Nehru in 1949. The museum houses one of the rare collections of textiles, dating back to the 17th century. Calico museum is the world's best museum on textiles.

Accessibility :

Ahmedabad is well connected by air, rail and roads with other major cities in India. Ahmedabad city has also its international airport through which this is connected with many cities in different countries. All the major domestic airlines like Indian airlines, Jet airways, Kingfisher etc. are operating from various cities of India to Ahmedabad.

This is also very well connected by Indian rail with the major cities like Delhji, Mumbai, Kolkata , Chennai and many other cities in India. Superfast trains like Rajdhani and Shatabdi exp. also running. So this is very easy to connect Ahmedabad city from any parts of India and from out of India as well.

Accommodation :

As per the growing demand of tourists as well as business travelers Ahmedabad city has wide range of accommodation all across the city. One can get the accommodation at city centre area as well as near to tourist place. The accommodation facility provided at the hotel varies with the class and the star categories of the hotel. The accommodation in the Ahmedabad Hotels is clubbed with all the basic facilities and amenities that tourists require while on a tour. The rooms of the hotel are tastefully furnished and decorated with soothing colors and plush tapestry. The rooms are equipped with modern amenities which include a color television, phone and attached bathroom with hot and cold running water along with 24 hours of room service to assist the guest.
Depending on the budget and preference, the tourists can choose from the wide range of Hotel accommodation in Ahmedabad.

Fairs & Festivals : 

Along with the number of beautiful historic monuments which are always worth a visit, a variety of festivals are celebrated the year round, from the kite-flying festival of Uttarayan in January, festival of colours Holi in March-April, Rakshabandhan in August, festival of lights Diwali , Id-ul-Fitr in October. Besides these are the various smaller festivals, and the uniquely Gujarati celebration of the nine nights of Navaratri in September, when the city of Ahmedabad comes alive each night with garbas danced all over the city. Also this city frequently hosts handicraft exhibitions and fairs.

International Kite Festival (Uttarayan)
Among these fairs and festivals " Kite flying festival " is very famous and charming. Kites are believed to have first arrived in India either through Muslim traders coming eastward through Persia or Buddhist pilgrims coming from China in search of sacred texts. Since Gujarat is at the westernmost edge of India, it is one of the regions where Muslim and Hindu cultures have blended to a great degree in many aspects. Hence, the development of using kites, probably brought by Muslims, to celebrate Uttarayan, a Hindu festival. Still, no one knows exactly when this tradition began. Kite flying has come a long way with the invention of motorized and even fiberglass kites-to compete with kite-paper, which was universally accepted as the only material that could fly. However, the tradition of kite flying in India has not changed. In towns and cities, where fields are difficult to find, terraces and rooftops are often used for this traditional sport.

This interbational kite festival is held on 14th Jan. every year on the day of Uttarayan is celebrated in gujrat and this is known as Makar Sankranti festival in other parts of north India. Since 1989, the city of Ahmedabad has hosted the International Kite Festival as part of the official celebration of Uttarayan, bringing master kite makers and flyers from all over the world to demonstrate their unique creations and wow the crowds with highly unusual kites. People flying kites on this day from the dawn. On this day at Ahmedabad atmosphere is wonderfully festive, as whole families gather on the rooftop, special foods like laddoos , undhyu or surati jamun are prepared for eating over the course of the day, and friends and neighbors visit each other for group kite-flying fun. One of the sidelights of the festival is the Patang Bazaar ( Kite market ), which is open 24 hours a day in the heart of Ahmedabad during the Makar Sankranti week. A visit to this bazaar in the middle of the night proves beyond all doubt that the entire population of the city is obsessed with patangs and they crowd the streets and buy their stocks while haggling and enjoying through the night.

Navratri Festival
This is another colourful religious festival is held in Gujrat with a gorgeous celebration. Navratri, meaning 'nine nights', is one of the most popular and widely celebrated Hindu festivals in many parts of India. Gujarat, however, is the only state that erupts into a nine-night dance festival, perhaps the longest in the world. Each night, all over the state, villages and cities alike, people gather in open spaces to celebrate feminine divinity, referred to as Shakti.

The dance form known as ras garba (also joined sometimes by dandiya, which uses small wooden sticks), comes from Lord Krishna's worship rather than Goddess worship, from the Gop culture of Saurashtra and Kutch. Stories of relationships between Krishna and the Gopis, and their emotions, also often make their way into the ras garba music.

Each night the village or urban neighborhood gathers to perform a puja to one of the nine forms of Goddess. After the puja begins the music; it is unmistakable to those who are familiar with the style and irresistible to many. People begin to dance in a circle, whirling away till late into the night. It is not uncommon to find dancers with swords or lit flames and other spectacles.
Vadodara is a good place to find the full range of these styles, traditional to modern, acoustic to amplified, simple to complicated, each one represented in its extreme somewhere in the city.

Modhera Dance Festival
This dance festival is held every year during the third week end of January after the conclusion of Uttarayan festival ( International kite festival at Ahmedabad ). Sun Temple in Modhera act a venue and host of this enchanting festival. Modhera is located in the South-west of Mehsana District and is 25 km away from the town of Mehsana.

Modhera, the temple of the Sun narrating the history and grandeur of its patrons, the Solankis, is an architectural marvel. This peerless temple space acts as a grandiose backdrop for the vibrant expression of dancers and aesthetical ethnicity of the country. Dance troupes and performers from all regions of the nation bring along a panorama of varied dance forms and styles, interlaced with the essence of their origins. The performers blend in the ambience and bring life to the sandstone figurines carved on the edifice of the temple, singing and narrating legends of times bygone.

The Bhabrapad fair
This Bhabrapad fair is held at Ambaji village just outside the temple premises, near the Gujarat-Rajasthan border. The fair is held in the Hindu month of Bhadrapad (around August-September) at Ambaji, during a time which is particularly suitable for farmers, when the busy monsoon season is about to end. Devotees are known to attend this fair each year from all over the world. The village is visited by the largest number of sanghas [pilgrim groups] during the fair. Many of them go there on foot, which is particularly enriching as it happens immediately after the monsoon, when the landscape is rich with greenery, streams are full of sparkling water and the air is fresh.

During their stay at Ambaji, pilgrims spend their time in prayers and devotion and visiting other shrines nearby. Some of them also attend the readings of the Saptashati: 700 verses in praise of the Goddess Ambaji. In addition to the local shops, temporary stalls are erected selling eatables, toys, pictures and statues of idols, amulets, bamboo articles, etc. Merry-go-rounds and ferri wheels are set up for recreation, and acrobatics are performed.

On the night of the full moon, the sanghas also arrange performances of bhavai: a traditional and popular folk-drama, and garbas are sung in the chachar chowk, using simple musical instruments like pakhwaj, hungal and jhanjh.

Rann Utsav
This festival celebrates on full moon night in the month of December. The celebratory festival begins in the Bhuj city and goes around the district with a grand finale again being held at the preliminary destination. The festival is visited and enjoyed by more than 8000 tourists from all over the world. This three to four day carnival organized at the various locales within Kutch takes one around the natural grandiose while introducing the visitor to the indigenous cultural and ethnical flavor of the people. Semi parched Grasslands of the Banni hosts the most magnificent display of vernacular architecture as the exhibition platform for the varied range of arts and crafts of the region. While an array of folk music and dance performances organized in the shimmering moonlit landscape provides the most enchanting experience.

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