Junagadh, located in the western Indian state of Gujarat, is a city with a rich history and cultural heritage. It is home to several fascinating places to visit, including ancient temples, beautiful parks, and historical sites. Here are 18 places to visit in Junagadh that you should not miss:
- Uparkot Fort: This ancient fort, built in the 3rd century BC, offers stunning views of the city and surrounding areas. It is a perfect spot for photography enthusiasts.
- Gir Forest National Park: This national park is home to the Asiatic lion, and it offers visitors the opportunity to spot these majestic animals in their natural habitat.
- Ashok Shilalekh: This ancient rock inscription, dating back to the 3rd century BC, is a must-see for history buffs. It is located near the Uparkot Fort.
- Junagadh Zoo: This popular zoo is home to a wide variety of animals, including lions, tigers, leopards, and many more. It is a great place to visit with kids.
- Sakkarbaug Zoological Garden: This zoo, located on the outskirts of Junagadh, is home to over 1,200 animals, including a wide variety of birds and reptiles.
- Adi Kadi Vav: This ancient stepwell, built in the 12th century, is a fascinating architectural masterpiece. It is a great spot to cool off on a hot day.
- Darbar Hall Museum: This museum, located inside the Uparkot Fort, showcases a collection of ancient artifacts and historical items.
- Maqbara of Bahaduddinbhai Hasainbhai: This beautiful mausoleum, built in the 19th century, is a must-see for architecture enthusiasts.
- Jama Masjid: This ancient mosque, built in 1423, is a beautiful example of Mughal architecture. It is a popular place of worship for the city’s Muslim community.
- Swaminarayan Temple: This temple, built in the 19th century, is a beautiful example of traditional Indian architecture. It is a popular place of worship for the city’s Hindu community.
- Narsinh Mehta’s Choro: This ancient temple, built in the 15th century, is dedicated to the Hindu god Krishna. It is a popular pilgrimage site for devotees.
- Junagadh Buddhist Cave Group: This group of ancient caves, dating back to the 3rd century BC, is a fascinating example of Buddhist architecture.
- Darbar Hall Art Gallery: This art gallery, located inside the Uparkot Fort, showcases a collection of paintings, sculptures, and other works of art.
- Damodar Kund: This beautiful lake, located near the Swaminarayan Temple, is a popular spot for picnics and boating.
- Surya Mandir: This ancient temple, dedicated to the Hindu sun god Surya, is a beautiful example of traditional Indian architecture.
- Jama Bava’s Tomb: This ancient tomb, built in the 16th century, is a fascinating example of Mughal architecture.
- Durbar Hall Ground: This popular park, located near the Uparkot Fort, is a great spot for a leisurely stroll.
- Gandhi Smriti: This museum, located near the Uparkot Fort, showcases a collection of items related to the life and work of Mahatma Gandhi.
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History of Junagadh
Junagadh, located in the western Indian state of Gujarat, has a rich and fascinating history. The city was founded in the 3rd century BC by the Mauryan emperor Ashoka, and it was named after the nearby Uparkot Fort.
Throughout its history, Junagadh has been ruled by several different dynasties, including the Mauryans, the Guptas, the Mughals, and the Marathas. In the 16th century, the city came under the control of the Nawabs of Junagadh, who ruled the region until 1947.
During the rule of the Nawabs, Junagadh became an important center of trade and commerce. The city was home to a thriving textile industry, and it was a major port for the export of goods to the Middle East.
In 1947, when India gained independence from British rule, Junagadh became part of the newly-formed state of Saurashtra. However, a dispute over the city’s accession to India led to the Junagadh Plebiscite, in which the people of Junagadh voted overwhelmingly to join the Indian Union.
Today, Junagadh is a bustling city with a vibrant culture and a rich history. It is home to several historical sites and landmarks, including the Uparkot Fort, the Ashok Shilalekh, and the Gir Forest National Park. These attractions attract thousands of tourists every year, making Junagadh an important center of tourism in Gujarat.