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12 Awe-Inspiring Historical Monuments in Gujarat

Heritage sites are unarguably the most important physical components giving a unique identity to a destination. The strategic locations, the lived-in architecture, and their amazing elements speak volumes about the destinations’ eventful past, rich heritage, cultural legacy, and architectural brilliance. Gujarat is home to some of the most stunning heritage sites. These heritage sites in Gujarat foster a sense of community and home while serving as a reminder of the state's historical legacy. Besides unique landmarks, Gujarat is home to four UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Vibrant Gujarat is known for its amazing culture and wealth of heritage. Let us look at the top heritage sites in Gujarat that successfully create unique and exciting experiences for discerning travellers.

List of 12 Historical Monuments & Heritage Sites in Gujarat

Gujarat is peppered with magnificent heritage sites that are symbols of its rich cultural, historical, and architectural past. Soak in the beauty of these marvels that reveals interesting stories about their past. Know more about these sites and what makes them unique.

  • Rani ki Vav. Intricate and Elegant Carvings
  • Dwarkadish Temple. A Prominent Hindu Temple
  • Vijay Vilas Palace. A Summer Abode of the Kachchh Family
  • Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park. A World Heritage Site
  • Sun Temple. An Architectural Masterpiece
  • Ahmedabad. The Heritage City in Gujarat
  • Sidi Saiyyed Mosque. A Stunning Site
  • Prag Mahal. An Architectural Wonder
  • Champaner Jain Temple. A Prominent Jain Pilgrimage Site
  • Dholavira. Indus Valley Civilization Site in Gujarat
  • Uperkot Fort. A Renowned Historical Site
  • Bhadra Fort & Teen Darwaja. Frescoes and Intricate Carvings

1. Rani Ki Vav | Intricate and Elegant Carvings

This heritage site is located on the side of River Saraswati in Patan. Rani Udayamati, the daughter of King Khengara in the Saurashtra region, built this step-well in the 11th century. As per historians, the step-well was a life saviour for the people of the region as the region is known to face severe water issues during the hot, dry season. The step-well was covered in silt when excavated in the 1940s by the Archaeological Survey of India. It got its world heritage site title in 2014. It is seven-storeyed deep, built to represent an inverted temple. The walls, roofs, and columns all across the site bear archaeological displays of intense and intricate artwork.

Besides showcasing the highest regard for water as a lifeline for mankind, the architectural richness of the site embodies about 500 major sculptured works and thousands of minor sculptures. All of these have mythological or religious significance. Another noteworthy feature of the step-well is that it indicates the engineering faculties of those times, with water conservation at the core of its design.

  • Location. Mohan Nagar Society, Patan, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. Massive Stepwell with intricate carvings
  • Built-In. 11th Century
  • Timings. 08:30 hours to 19:00 hours.
  • Entry Fee. Rs. 35/- for Indians, SAARC & BIMSTEC Visitors. Rs. 550/- for foreigners.
  • Places to Visit in Patan. Patan City Museum, Modhera Sun Temple, Shastraling Talav, Bindu Sarovar, Rudra Mahalaya, Shankeshwar Jain Temple.
  • Nearest Airport to Patan. Ahmedabad Airport | Distance. 125 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Patan. Patan Railway Station

Also Read - 40 UNESCO World Heritage Sites In India

2. Dwarkadish Temple | A Prominent Hindu Temple

One of the most significant spiritual sites and famous monuments of Gujarat, Dwarkadish Temple, is also known for its architectural splendour. Dedicated to Lord Krishna, this temple is called Jagat Mandir. This temple is the epitome of structural brilliance. This five-storeyed temple is supported by intricately-carved 60 columns and is approximately 2200 years old. The temple attracts a lot of devotees, especially during Janmashtami.

  • Location. Dwarka, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. Five-storeyed spire supported by 60 columns
  • Built-In. 200 BCE
  • Timings. 06:30 hours to 13:00 hours and 17:00 hours to 21:30 hours
  • Entry Fee. Free
  • Places to Visit in Dwarka. Bhadkeshwar Mahadev Temple, Shri Nageshvar Jyotirling, Rukmani Devi Mandir, Dwarka Beach, Sudama Setu
  • Nearest Airport to Dwarka. Jamnagar Airport | Distance. 8.2 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Dwarka. Dwarka Railway Station

Also Read. Famous Temples in Gujarat

3. Vijay Vilas Palace | A Summer Abode of the Kachchh Family

Built by Rao Vijayraj Ji in 1929, this opulent palace is located close to the famous Mandvi Beach. It is an erstwhile summer palace of the royal family of Kachchh rulers. It is one of the most prominent and worth-visiting monuments in Gujarat. This palace also showcases the eclectic blend of Mughal, Rajput, and Victorian architectural styles. Sprawled in a vast expanse of 450 acres, the palace is beautifully surrounded by manicured gardens and a private beach. A part of the palace has been converted into a luxury heritage property where you can stay and live a life like royalty!

  • Location. Mandvi Rural, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. Bulbous domes and opulent interiors
  • Built-In. 1929
  • Timings. 09:00 hours to 18:00 hours
  • Entry Fee. INR 50 per person; INR 10 Additional for a Private Vehicle; INR 20 per camera
  • Places to Visit in Mandvi. Mazaar-e-Noorani, Mandvi Beach and Windfarm, Roopaali Handicrafts, Shyamji Krishna Varma Memorial
  • Nearest Airport to Mandvi. Bhuj Airport | Distance. 312.4 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Mandvi. Bhuj Railway Station

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4. Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park | A World Heritage Site

This is one of the world heritage sites in Gujarat that was inscribed by UNESCO in 2004. It is located in the Panchmahal district, on the outskirts of Champaner, an 8th-century historical city founded by Raja Vanraj Chavda from the Chavda Dynasty.    

The entire site echoes the rich ethos of ancient India, with forts and bastions covering it from the Pavagadh hills to Champaner city. The entire landscape bears vivid testimony of a cultural past, from the hill fortress, chalcolithic sites, palaces, temples, tombs, mosques, arched structures, entrance gates, step-wells, tanks, residences, agricultural sites to remnants of a city that was once the capital of Gujarat. All the structures date between the 8th and 14th centuries.

One of the places still frequented by visitors is the Kalika Mata Temple, built at the height of 2,600 ft on Pavagadh Hill. Besides, a blend of Hindu and Muslim architectural essence highlights how the site has survived through different eras. The Jama Masjid built on the foothills of the Pavagadh Hills is now abandoned.

  • Location. Panchmahal District, Champaner, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. A Perfect Blend of Hindu and Muslim Architectural Elements
  • Built-In. 8th Century
  • Timings. 08:30 hours to 17:00 hours
  • Entry Fee. Rs. 30 for Indians, SAARC, and BIMSTEC residents. Rs. 500 for Foreigners
  • Places to Visit in Champaner. Jami Masjid, Pavagarh Hill, Pavagarh Fort, Maa Mahakalika Temple, Kevada Masjid
  • Nearest Airport to Champaner. Vadodara Airport | Distance. 43.3 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Champaner. Vadodara Railway Station

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5. Sun Temple | An Architectural Masterpiece

The Sun Temple is an architectural masterpiece, one of the most sought-after historical and spiritual places to visit in Gujarat. It is a prominent Hindu Temple dedicated to the Sun God. Located by the banks of the serene River Pushpavati, the temple was built during the Chalukya Dynasty in 1026 AD. Today, this temple has primarily become a place of tourism interest, and no prayers are offered. The Archeological Survey of India maintains the site. Beautifully constructed in Maru-Gurjara architectural style, the Sun Temple is one of the Seven Wonders of India. 

  • Location. Mehsana-Becharaji Road, Modhera, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. Displays Impressive Elements of Maru-Gurjara Architectural Style
  • Built-In. 1026 AD
  • Timings. 06:00 hours to 18:00 hours
  • Entry Fee. Free
  • Places to Visit in Modhera. Shri Modheshwari Mata Temple, Surya Kund, Thol Lake Bird Sanctuary, Mira Datar Dargah, Three Darwaja
  • Nearest Airport to Modhera. Ahmedabad Airport | Distance. 95 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Modhera. Becharaji Railway Station

6. Ahmedabad | The Heritage City in Gujarat

The city of Ahmedabad was inscribed as one of Gujarat's heritage sites in 2017. With a rich historical and cultural past, the old city is home to ‘Pols’ or the residential clusters typical of the medieval era. These ‘Pols’ existed as gated communities with the entrance gate open from the morning till sunset and fortified during the night. Several Pols together made the ‘Purs.’ These Purs exist today and are examples of peaceful co-existence between people of different faiths and ethnicities like Hindus, Muslims, and Jains. Other than these, Gandhiji’s Sabarmati Ashram is another great attraction. The Havelis of Ahmedabad also hold a significant place in the city’s history and are one of the key reasons behind the heritage city inscription.

  • Location. Ahmedabad, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. Known for its Cultural and Historical Legacy
  • Built-In. 1411 AD
  • Timings. N/A
  • Entry Fee. Free
  • Places to Visit in Ahmedabad. Sabarmati Ashram, Sabarmati Ashram, Science City, Hutheesing Jain Temple, Riverfront Flower Park.
  • Nearest Airport to Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad Airport | Distance. 13.4 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad Junction Railway Station

Also Read - Famous Historical Monuments Of India

7. Sidi Saiyyed Mosque | A Stunning Site

A spiritually prominent and architecturally renowned building, Sidi Saiyyed Mosque is known for its intricately carved windows, lovely jaali work, and more. The mosque was up in 1573 by Sidi Saiyyed, a slave of Sultan Ahmed Shah. Well-chiselled marble work adds grace and elegance to the building.

  • Location. Ahmedabad, Gujarat
  • Unique Features. Known for its Indo-Saracenic Style of Architecture
  • Built-In. 1573 AD
  • Timings. 7:00 AM to 18:00 PM
  • Entry Fee. Free
  • Places to Visit in Ahmedabad. Sabarmati Ashram, Sabarmati Ashram, Science City, Hutheesing Jain Temple, Riverfront Flower Park.
  • Nearest Airport to Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad Airport | Distance. 9.6 km
  • Nearest Railway Station to Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad Junction Railway Station

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8. Prag Mahal | An Architectural Wonder