Places To Visit
Pavagadh is a small but tall mountain about 46 kilometers away from Vadodara. The history of the religious and historic mountain is linked with Patai Raval. It is said that king Vanaraj chavada established Champaner at the, Foot of Pavagadh in fond memory of his wise minister Champa. The Patai Raval family ruled it and look care of the boundary. The folk tales say that the Mahakali joined the Garba’ (The traditional Gujarati group dance) assuming the form of a woman during the Navaratra festival. There is the Mahakali scat at the top of the hill. The last Patai Jaisinh saw the beautiful lady and threw nasty looks at her. The deity cursed him. As a result of that curse, the Sultan of Gujarat, Muhammad Begda assaulted Pavagadh and won over the hill on the boundary.
Sayaji Baug Museum
Sayaji Baug, also known as Kamati Baug is situated on river Vishwamitri. It was built by SayajiRoa III in 1879 A.D. and covers an extensive area of 113 acres. The museum is considered to be one of the most famous museums of the country. It was constructed in 1894 and was designed by the famous architect R. F. Chisholm. The Picture Gallery building was added in 1910 and it houses excellent collection of originals by famous British Painters Turner and constable and many others. The Egyptian mummy and a skeleton of a blue Whale are major attractions for those who visit the museum. Other treasures include the famous Akota bronzes dating the 5th century A.D. A collection of Mughul miniatures, a full-fledged gallery of Tibetan Arts etc. The museum houses a rich collection of art, sculpture, ethnography & ethnology. Several of the paintings are not only original but masterpieces at the picture gallery. It also has a skeleton of a Blue Whale and Egyptian Mummy.
Ajwa is a reservoir located about 10 miles east of the city of Vadodara. Its an earthen dam that was built early 20th century by the then ruler of Vadodara, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III. Its main aim was to provide water to the residents of Vadodara. Although the population of Baroda at that time was 100,000 it was the ruler”s vision to build the reservoir 3 times larger. Hence now this reservoir has ability to attend to water requirements of about 300,000 people residing in the eastern parts of the city. The dam is about 5 km long and can store water to the height of 212 feet above the sea level. The floor of the reservoir is at around 196 feet. It is connected to the Vishwamitri river which flows through the city of Baroda, so that excess water in event of floods is dispatched to this river. Adjacent to the dam are the famous Ajwa gardens also called as Vrindavan Garden, which are an adaptation of the famous Vrindavan gardens located in Mysore. The Sayaji Sarovar or Ajwa lake, 22 kms away from the city is the principal source of water. It is formed by damming the Surya river and Vaghali Nala. Work on the scheme was started in 1885 and was completed in 1890. The gardens at Ajwa are patterned after the famous Brindavan Gardens of Mysore. The illumination of fountains is a major attraction for tourists.
Ajwa Nimeta Garden
On a hot summer day or even otherwise, what can be better than having a stroll in the garden? But the Ajwa Nimeta Garden of Vadodara is not the plain normal garden that one would expect. In fact, it is a place where one can do innumerable other activities as well. This is because the management of the garden ensures that people who come there have a lovely time.
The ideal time to visit the Ajwa Nimeta Garden Baroda is in the evenings when the authorities start the water fountains. At that time, the splendor of the garden is beautiful and beyond words. The whole of the park turns into a beautiful fairy land. Transportation to the park is available from all corners of the city including private and public transport buses and even auto rickshaws. The biggest tourist attraction is that the garden is shaped like the Vrindavan garden of Mysore.
The Ajwa Nimeta Gardens are so beautiful that it is used for film and documentary shootings as well. Irrespective of whether it is a Sunday or a public holiday, the authorities turn on the laser and light show in the evening to enthrall the people who come to visit the place. The Municipal Corporation of Vadodara has indeed done a great job in not only creating a wonder out of the park but also maintaining it in a neat and organized manner.
EME Temple (Dakshinamurti Temple)
EME Temple, often referred as the Dakshinamurti Temple, was built by the Electrical and Mechanical Engineering (EME) Corps. Featuring an unusually modern geodesic architecture, this temple is dedicated to Dakshinamurti, a form of Shiva as supreme teacher. It is run by Indian Army Authorities, and incorporates holy symbols of all religions in one place as they do not have separate places of worship for different faiths.Depicting army architecture, the aluminium building of this temple is ringed by a garden featuring a rich collection of 106 ancient statues from the 6th to the 16th centuries.
This is uncommonly modern-looking temple, however, built with holy symbols from various religions. The five main religions in India are represented by different symbols in the structure and design of EME Temple.
The ‘Kalash‘ on the top of the dome symbolizes Hinduism.
The ‘Dome‘ stands for Islam.
The ‘Tower‘ represents Christianity.
The ‘Golden-structure‘ above the tower represents Buddhism.
The ‘Entrance‘ of the temple stands for Jainism.
The EME temple houses an idol of Lord Dakshinamurthi. The idol faces the south and is believed to impart his teachings to the world, facing that direction. The whole place is surrounded by acres of lush green peaceful environment drives you through a true holistic experience.
Kirti Mandir, or Temple of Fame, is the cenotaph of the Gaekwads, located in the city of Vadodara.It was built by Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III to perpetuate the glorious memory of his beloved ancestors. The sun, the moon and the earth in bronze with the undivided map of India adorn the sikhara of Kirti Mandir. It was built in 1936 as part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations of Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III. The temple houses 5 wall paintings by artist Raja Ravi Varma showing various phases of battle of Mahabharata.
Sursagar Lake, formerly known as Chandan Talao, lies in the middle of the city of Vadodara. Rebuilt with stone banks and masonry in the 18th century, this lake remains full of water throughout the year. A concrete wall rings the lake that is often used by people to sit and enjoy the evenings. Vadodara Municipal Corporation has recently constructed a 120 ft tall statue of Lord Shiva in standing posture, in the middle of this lake.Several underground gates have been constructed to empty the lake in case it shows signs of overflowing. Water from these gates gushes to river Vishwamitri, which flows through the city of Vadodara. The lake is now being used for boating purposes, and looks extremely beautiful particularly on moonlit nights.