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Places to visit in Gir

When you travel to Gir, you will love to visit popular tourist spots and enjoy the local culture. Amongst other Things to do in Gir, you can surely explore some of the best things to do in Gir to make your trip a fulfilling one. On a trip to Gir things to do can include exploring Gir attractions and visiting the places of interest.

Attractions in gir

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Veraval was once a port for the Nawab of Junagadh. Old gates and historic buildings can be seen around this place. Today, the fishing port here is famous for its dhow-building yard where huge seaworthy vessels are manually made.

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The main temple of Somnath serves as an important religious site for Hindus as it is one of the 12 jyotirlingas or holy abodes of Lord Shiva. It has historical importance for being ransacked by the Persians for its riches. Interesting architectural remnants and sculptures of the ruined temples of Somnath are there at the Prabhas Patan Museum. Somnath is also very well known for Lord Krishna's cenotaph, the bathing ghats of Triveni Tirth, A Sun Temple belonging to the medieval ages, the Ahilya Temple and Bakhla Tirth where it is believed that Lord Krishna was deceased.

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About Junagadh

Junagadh is situated at the foot of Girnar Hills and is the seventh largest city in Gujarat. It is one of the most architecturally forward and charismatic cities of Gujarat owing to the different rulers who reigned over it over the years. The literal translation of Junagadh is “old city” and derives its name from Uparkot, an ancient fort built in the fourth century. Junagadh is also known as ‘Sorath”, the name of the princely state that existed before the partition of India and Pakistan in the year 1947. Junagadh is a pot boiler of various cultures and is overflowing with ancient art and history. Apart from the famous Girnar Hill and Jama Masjid, one can see beautiful inscriptions, caves, temples, forts, step wells, edicts, tanks and canons dating back to 2nd century AD that will blow your mind away and enrich you about different cultures and religions and what it is to have all of them infused together as one.

 

 History Of Junagadh

The name Junagadh means Old Fort and has had numerous famous rulers over the years like the Kshatrapas, Mauryans, Chudasamas, Guptas, Vilabhis, Gujarat Sultans and Babi Nawabs. The fascinating history of this city in Gujarat chronologically presents the birth and genesis of what once used to be a strong foothold of the different rulers. Delving into the history reveals that it has been a religious as well as a cultural hub in many ways.

 

Religious History Of Junagadh

All the different rulers who ruled over the state of Gujarat have left a mark on its religious past. Jainism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam are the different religions that are majorly practiced in Junagadh. The old rock that are called Buddhist caves are as old as 500 BC. Beautiful stone carvings and floral work can be spotted in these caves. Just like Buddhism, it is of great religious importance to Hindus as well as Jains. On top of Mount Girnar there are different temples which are extremely auspicious to Hindus and Jains. The top can be reached by climbing 9999 steps constructed along the temples.  

 

Junagadh Tourism

Tomb of Mahabat Khan and Bahar Ud Din Bhar

The tomb of Nawabs from the Babi Dynasty which are famously known as maqbaras are situated adjacent to the railway station. The beautiful Mahabat Maqabra was built over the tomb of the 6th Nawab Sahib Muhammad Mahabat Khan shortly after his death. The Bahar Ud Din Bhar Maqabra is widely known for its grandeur and beautiful intricate carvings. Built in the 1800’s, the architecture is an evolution with a blend of Hindu, Muslim and European art which is definitely worth a visit if you are interested in architecture and love photography.

 

Darbar Hall Museum

The Darbar Hall Museum was earlier a hall which was used by Nawabs to host events and their formal audiences. However, now it has been converted into a museum, displaying textiles and weapons. One also gets to see royal furniture, classic chandeliers and glass mirror carved in wooden framings.

 

Sakkarbaug Zoo

Sakkarbaug Zoo was built in the year 1863 and is thus one of the oldest zoos in India. It is home to Asiatic lions that were once present all over Asia but are now becoming extinct. A very small population is now present at the Gir National Park. They even opened a natural history Museum in the year 2003 for people to get a better insight on the habitat of these wild animals who are on the verge of extinction.

 

Buddhist Caves

These caves date back to 500 BC and have been carved out of the Uparkot Hill. The main hall is abundant with rich decorations, art and culture. 

 

Jama Masjid

Jama Masjid is a mosque and a historic symbol of Junagadh built in the year 1423 by the Ahmedabad’s’ founder Ahmed Shah I. The mosque has an open courtyard made with white marble and the walls made with yellow sandstones. The mosque has a whopping 15 domes and 260 pillars to support the structure with intricate detailing and designing.

 

Mount Girnar

 Mount Girnar is the highest point of Gujarat. This green mountain is full of teak forests and has Hindu and Jain temples scattered all over the range thus making it crucial from religious point of view. There are ten thousand steps to be climbed to reach the top and takes around 5 to 6 hours to reach the top. People also undertake treks to the top to see the breath taking view from atop.

 

Junagadh Mandirs

A religious city, it has several magnificent temples dedicated to different deities. The most famous ones are the Gorknath Temple, Dattatreya Temple, Kamandulu Kund and Kalika Mata Shikhar.

 

Uperkot Fort- Junagadh Fort

Uperkot Fort was built in the year 319 and rebuilt a number of times however was never restored. This is the reason that today this fort is in a bad shape but a lot of things that can be learnt by visiting it. The Buddhist caves, Jama Masjid, Adi Kadi Vav are all placed together inside the Uperkot Fort.

 

Weather in Junagadh

The weather in Junagadh can be accounted to the conditions in the region overall and is thus characterized by extreme climates. It is very hot in the summers and equally cold in winters.

 

Highlights Of Junagadh

  • Junagadh is situated at the foot of Mount Girnar, the highest mountain of Gujarat.
  • Junagadh is known as the melting pot of various different religions
  • Sakkarbaug Zoo is one of the oldest zoos in the world and is home to Asiatic Lions which are on the verge of extinction
  • Uperkot Fort has various interesting places to be visited such as Buddhist caves, Jama Masjid and Adi Kadi Vav.
  • The two famous tombs of Junagadh date back to the 6th Century.

 

Recommended for

The heritage of Junagadh forms the basic premise for its existence. Over and above this, there is also great wildlife to be explored. This city is apt to be explored by animal lovers and architectural admirers. Junagadh also has religious importance and is often visited by Hindus, Muslims, Jains and Buddhists alike.

 

Interesting Facts about Junagadh

  • Junagadh is a state on the coast of Saurashtra surrounded by Indian Territory.
  • The nearest airport to Junagadh is in Porbandar
  • Junagadh has been a major religious center since the 3rd century
  • The climate of Junagadh is characterized by extreme hot and cold weathers as it lies near the tropic of cancer
  • Junagadh was reigned by many rulers like Mauriyans, the Kshatrapas and the Guptas
  • Mount Girnar is of extreme religious importance for Hindus and Jains

 

How to get thereBy Road

Junagadh is extremely accessible by car and buses. Hoping on a bus is the best way to reach Junagadh. Good road connectivity and State Transportation is available from Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Porbandar, Veraval and Porbandar.

By Rail

A number of express trains run through Junagadh and it is very well connected to all major cities of India.

By Air

Junagadh does not have an airport; the nearest airport is the Porbandar Airport. Porbandar to Junagadh is approx. 100 kilometers by road and can be reached by road or rail.

 

Location 

Junagadh is located in the State of Gujarat, India. It is situated 355kms south west of the state capital Gandhinagar.

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It is a distinguished 3660-ft high hill that rises on the outskirts of Junagadh. It is adorned with temples on ridges and summit. It has a 12th century Jain Temple that attracts travellers and visitors because of its exquisite carvings. 

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Diu can be visited for its prominent beach and other famous monuments like Portuguese Fort and St Paul's Church.

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For bird watchers, Gondal has large water bodies where white pelican, demmossile and common crane, comb duck, black ibises, spoonbill, spot-billed duck and other birds can be spotted in large numbers.

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Jamnagar is a princely state and is known for many palaces, its bandhini fabrics and temples. Again, a home to a massive number of birds and bird species, Jamnagar is a heaven for bird watchers. 

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It is another good site for birdwatchers. The Indian skimmer can be seen in winter along with the great-crested grebe. The flamingo, white pelicans and painted stork can be seen close to the salt-works of Jamnagar.

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Start exploring Rajkot with the Jubilee park which is a large and open park area in Rajkot. While here one can visit the Connaught Hall and Mohandas Gandhi High School, Rashtriya Shala, Kaba Gandhi No Delo, Watson Museum, Lang Library, and Rotary Midtown Library. One can shop for famous Bandhani sarees and some traditional handmade and hand embroidered patchworks.

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Porbandar is also a dream heaven for bird watchers where one can see flamingos’ waders and wagtails. Near the wetlands and dams can be seen cranes and gulls. One can also visit the place as it was the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi and holds historical importance.

 

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Out of the seven holy cities of Hindus, Dwarka is one of them and is considered one of the char-dham yatras. The important temples which can be visited are the Krishna Temple, The Rukmani Temple, The Sankracharya’s Math and the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga. It is a good place for birdwatchers. One can also find green sea turtles near the beach and dolphins near Okha while going to Bet Dwarka.

Food in gir

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Restaurants in Gir provide good quality of food at an affordable price. DS Food and Culture, Hotel Anil Farm House River View Restaurant, Khusbu Restaurant, Sagar Restaurant are a few where good food is found. 

Shopping in gir

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Patola Silk saris, and traditional Gagra-Cholis, bandhanis are the famous buys in Gujarat. The conventional handicrafts and textiles, wall hangings, marriage costumes, cradle clothes, embroidered, appliquéd quilts, cloth toys, lacquer furniture, embroidered footwear, curios can be found in the shops of the nearby towns and in a big city that lies close to it, Sasankot. Maximum areas of Gujarat are rich in authentic handicrafts. With a large number of shopping centres existing in Rajkot, it offers the people the ‘shop till you drop’ experience. 

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