Ahmedabad is India’s first World Heritage City
India is known worldwide for its culture, traditions, history, and unity, therefore there is no scarcity of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the country but what’s more interesting than this is that it also has the World Heritage City now. The race for winning the prestigious title of the first heritage city of India included Delhi, Mumbai, and Ahmedabad as competitors but to everyone’s surprise, India’s main metropolitan cities have been defeated by Ahmedabad, the former capital of the westernmost Indian state of Gujarat.
The unique heritage of the historic city of Ahmedabad (which is more than 600-years-old) has been recognized by the UNESCO. Ahmedabad received support from around 20 countries and at last, won the accolade. Besides being the largest city of Gujarat, this city is replete with wonders, including the finest examples of Indo-Islamic architecture and Hindu-Muslim art. All these things together prove that it is indeed a city of legacies. Here we enlist a few of the reasons that demonstrate that Ahmedabad deserves this title better than anyone else.
Brimming with historical monuments, Ahmedabad is a beautiful conglomerate of Hindu-Islamic heritage. The city bears testimony to the prowess of Hindu, Muslim and Jain craftsmen. The 15th-century Bhadra Fort is the most majestic tourist attraction of the city. Sidi Saiyyed Mosque is also quite remarkable owing to its Indo-Saracenic style architecture. Other heritage sites of the city include Teen Darwaza, Qutub Shahi Mosque and Jama Masjid. The city’s colonial architecture can also be admired during a Gujarat tour
Depicting the vast history and colorful culture of Gujarat, Ahmedabad shelters several museums. Ahmedabad is not known for its textile industry and historical monuments but also for its well-stocked ancient museums. If you are interested in knowing about the history and lifestyle of rulers, you must visit the museums. The Sheth BJ Vidyabhavan Museum has a collection of about 11,000 manuscripts in Sanskrit, Prakrit, Gujarati, Arabic, and Persian. The Museum of Folk Arts represents the culture of Kathi, Rabari, Ahir, Charan, Bharwad, Kanabi, Mer, Koli, Banasali, Rajput, Meman and Miyana communities. Other famous museums include Satyagraha Museum which used to be the residence of Mahatma Gandhi in earlier times and Calico Museum of Textiles.
3. City Layout
Ahmedabad has been host to many historical as well as traditional events, may it be in the form of freedom movement like Dandi March or trade relations that flourished during the 15th century and continue to work till date. Ahmedabad also represents an impressive fusion of old and new. In old Ahmedabad, one can come across hundreds of “Pols” while independent lifestyle is followed in the new Ahmedabad with broad roads and modern buildings. In recent times, many sustainable programmes have also been introduced for the betterment of the city. In all, the city presents an astounding example of human habitation.
Over a period of six centuries, Ahmedabad has evolved a lot. Even after going through modern changes, the city has kept its traditional resilience in terms of geomorphology as well as topography intact. Owing to the emerging techniques of infrastructure, hydrology and natural characteristics have undergone a change. Its infrastructure has been altered to a great extent because of the growing needs of the increased city population. Its gardens and land use patterns have not been affected but much variation has been noticed in the perceptions and visual relationships of people and urbanity of the city have also been metamorphosed.
The wooden and settlement architecture of the city is unique in all aspects. The material used in construction by all communities is composed of brick and timber masonry. The use of timber gave a good climatic comfort and gracious quality. This also served as a unifying effect in building cordial living environment with essential element control. The house form was also a notable one, including a central courtyard irrespective of the overall size of the house. This was almost similar in houses of all the communities. There was a great sense of well-being and sharing prevalent in society. This was evident in the followers of Hinduism, Jainism and Islam. The harmonious coexistence of all the communities contributed in the upliftment of the city including industry and trade firms.
These were some major reasons responsible for Ahmedabad’s winning of “India’s first World Heritage City by UNESCO”. Since Ahmedabad is listed among the world’s heritage cities, you must not delay taking a trip to Gujarat to go through all that Ahmedabad has to offer. In Ahmedabad, you can visit temples, museums, lakes, markets and much more. Book a trip with us and get to know Ahmedabad in detail.