Junagadh

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Junagadh is a historical city in Gujarat, in the west of India, on the Arabian Sea. The region of Junagadh became a district of Gujarat state in 1960. Junagadh was formerly the state capital and is now a district administrative center. It is also a market for gold and silver embroidery, perfume, and copper and brass vessels. It is the only place where wild Asiatic lions are still found.

History[edit]

Junagadh and Bantva-Manavadar was a Princely state which faced towards the Arabian Sea with Pakistan, in the Kathiawar peninsula, the capital city was Junagarh. Ruled by Muslim rulers of former British Raj till its illegal annexation into the Indian nation in 1948. It had an area of 8,904.6 Sq. Km² (3,438 Sq. mi²) and was bigger than Puerto Rico but was smaller than the Cyprus.

Mohammad Sher khan Babi, who owed allegiance to the Mughal governor of Gujarat subah, founded the State of Junagadh and declaring Independence in 1730 after Marathas Gaikwad invasion. Muhammad Sher khan Babi, was the founder of the Babi Dynasty of Junagadh State dynasty. His descendants, the Babi Nawabs of Junagadh, conquered large territories in southern Saurashtra and ruled over the state for the next two centuries, first as tributaries of Marathas, and later under the Suzerainty of the British Raj. The Junagadh family shares joint descent with the princely houses of Radhanpur and Balasinor, and the small states of Bantva, Manavadar and Sardargarh. Descendents of the Ghilzai Pathans from Afghanistan, they entered India under Usman Khan Babi, a follower of Emperor Humayun. His son, Sher Khan Babi, arrived in Gujarat in the train of Prince Murad Baksh, the Imperial Viceroy. For many years, the family remained the faithful, though powerful, local fief holders of and exceptional loyalty to the Mughal power. The impending collapse of the Islamic Indian empire during the early years of the eighteenth century, prompted the family household to carve out independent Kingdoms of their own to govern, from various landholdings and governorships they held sway. Sher Khan Babi, the Chief of the family, founded the state by expelling the then Mogul Governor in 1735. Originally a Rajput domain, it fell to the Muslims commanded by Mohammed Bagra of Ahmedabad in 1472.

Sher Khan's descendants held the posts and ruled over the state for the next two centuries, for a period as tributaries of Baroda, and later it came under the Suzerainty of the British Raj. In 1807 the Junagadh State became a British protectorate and The East India Company took control of the state by 1818 and the Saurashtra area with other Princely states of Kathiawar peninsula were separately administrated under Kathiawar Agency by British India.

In 1947 upon the Independence of Pakistan and the Indian Transfer of power, the last Babi dynasty ruler of the state Mohammad Mahabat Khanji III merged it into newly formed Dominion of Pakistan. Although surrounded on three sides by the Dominion of India, and on the fourth by open Arabian Sea. On 15th August it acceded to Pakistan and Pakistan Government accepted on 13th September 1947, following the Independence of the new Dominions of the Republic of India and Pakistan, the Khan Sahib Ghulam Moinuddin Khanji acceded his state of Manavadar to Pakistan, even though, being a Vassal state of Junagadh State, the prince had every right to do so. This act was done at the same time as his master, the Nawab of Junagadh who himself had the right not to accede his state to modern India, this was fully in accordance with the agreed principles for accession of Princely states. The accession not agreeable to the Indians, they applied various methods of tactic intimidation. They induced two vassal rulers to accede to their country in return for recognition as independent rulers, but even this did not last very long. Simultaneously, 'People's Committees' and the Indian National Congress party agitators were most encouraged to ferment civil unrest and create disturbances, against the new Dominion of Pakistan aimed at reducing the administration to chaos. The Nawab and his remaining family had fled to the safety fearing for their lives on 24th October, and chose to flee to their desired country, followed shortly afterwards by his Prime Minister they all eventually settled in the port city of Karachi (then as the capital of the nation).

In response to this Indian armed occupying forces acted very quickly and illegally entered the abandoned state by invading it inhabitants and assumed full control on the poor defenceless people, then arranged a Referendum by the GOI under their own organised auspices and even appointed its own administrator on the 9th November. The largely Hindu population were influenced and inevitably expressed an overwhelming wish to join the India. A mere 91 voters out of 201, 457 souls taking part wanted to remain and voted in favour of Pakistan. A surprising result, given that the state had a 40% Muslim population, which was considered a Dependency to the allied country by safeguarding their rights as a minority now as the claimed Disputed territory of Pakistan. Nawab Mahabat Khan III is much maligned by modern Indian "historians" and popular writers, largely because of his concern for wildlife and domesticated animals, their welfare and conservation. Much is written about a marriage party that he arranged for a favourite pet dog, but the fact of matter is that Saurashtra was blessed with its only tracts of forests land because of him, was never mentioned. He took major steps and dedication to protect the dwindling Gir forests, final abode of the remaining population of the Asiatic Lions. His interests in animal husbandry improved the breeding stock of Kathiwadi horses and Gir cattle, greatly improving the milk yields of the latter. His reign saw the opening of the massive Willingdon Dam, built the Bahadur Khanji Library and opened the Mahabat Khan free college. Upon his death in 1959 the Government of Pakistan installed and recognised the Junagadh House in Karachi, 9th October 1991. The Nawab of Junagadh Foundation Trust is also located there.

Understand[edit]

This city is surrounded by hills, hence an ideal place Fort was built.

Get in[edit]

Junagadh.jpg

By plane[edit]

Rajkot is the nearest airport.One can get regular flights to bombay from rajkot.Junagarh is two and half hr from rajkot by road.

By train[edit]

The Junagadh Railway Station is well-connected to all the major cities in India.It is on Ahmedabad - Somnath Route of Broadgauge line.

By car[edit]

Route from Ahmedabad to Junagadh Approximate distance 336 km | Drive time about: 6.72 hrs

Route from Rajkot to Junagadh Approximate distance 110 km | Drive time about: 2.2 hrs

Route from Vadodara to Junagadh Approximate distance 400 km | Drive time about: 7 hrs

By bus[edit]

State bus service from Porbandar (around 80 min journey), Rajkot and Veraval (around 90 minute journey).

By boat[edit]

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

  • Fort walls surrounding the town
Uperkot Fort wall, Junagadh
  • Darbaar Hall, now the Junagadh Museum + This remains closed on wednesdays and 2nd and 4th saturday.
  • Zoo +
  • Uparkot fort- Must see. Few good spots like buddhist cave, Adi-Kadi Vav, Jamia masjid are inside this fort. Has a radius of half km. or Vehicle can also reach to all these spots inside fort. May take 2-3 hours to see all these.
  • Jami Masjid -go to the top of this masjid to enjoy junagadh beauty.
Jamia Masjid, Junagadh.jpg
  • 2nd century Buddhist caves
  • Khapara-Kodia caves
  • Tomb of Nuri Shah
  • Adi-kadi Vav -must see
  • Navghan Kuvo
  • The mausoleums of the Nawabs of Junagadh
  • Holy hill of Girnar- It takes at least 5-6 hours to reach the top of the hill. Its a rocky and steep; so it is difficult task for people who do not trek much. There are approximately 10 thousand steps which are formed due to pilgrims. If you are lucky enough, you many spot one or many lions during your ascent.

There are various group of temples on the way. After climbing for 4000 steps, you will see Jain temples. These temples have greater importance for Jains. These temples are architecturally beautiful and elegant. After climbing 1200 steps more, you will reach at Amba Ji Mandir. Here there is enough space to rest and freshen up. Then around 400 steps down then 800 steps climb then 1200 steps down then 2300 steps up, here at Dattatraya Mandir there is very limited space hence no rest possible. It is advised that you start climbing at around 4 AM so that you can complete the entire reach upto Dattatray Girnar i.e. 10000 steps till 10 AM, since there is no place to take rest you are require to get down immediately, try to reach the mid top before 12 noon then you can rest here as there is space to rest). If you cannot reach the top of the hill, at least have a look through binocular ( Rs.5 for one view) which available after 50th or 100th step. you can imagine or plan whether you can reach the top.

  • Gir National Park ++

Pl. ask for the local people to guide to reach the Jeep tour at Sasan Gir which is apart from the Gir Sanctury regular bus service tour. The jeep tour cost in March 2013 was Rs. 2000/- including driver and guide with around 6 person capacity, it is allowed to move around the forest for 2 hours, there are morning 6 AM, 9 AM and 3 PM tours allowed by the jeep and for the petrol vehicles of ur own a permit needs to be taken then you can take ur vehicle with the help of guide in the forest. In case,you are planning to visit Sasan in advance,do go for online booking of permit,else one has go through the local touts,who initiate the queue,early in the morning and overcharge the visitors for permits. Also to be noted,the best time to take the forest tour is 3-6 PM,as the lions go for hunting during that time,and there is maximum probability to see lions. The second best time is morning 6-9 AM,when the lions go for morning hunting but the worst time is 9-12,when most of the lions are taking rest and you'll be lucky,in case you get to see a lion.

+: Darbaar Hall and the zoo remain closed for public on Wednesdays.

++: If you're staying in Junagadh, make it to Saasan early to go on the morning safari. There is no mid-day batch. So, if you are a late riser, chances are you will have to wait long hours for the evening batch. Check the latest timings with residents a day in advance.

  • Jatashankar Mahadev Mandir, 500 steps from Girnar Taleti (Left side steps from the Main Girnar steps). Jatashankar Mahadev temple can be reached by walking towards Girnar steps. There is a left turn in a street before Girnar steps where there is another way to go upwards. To reach Jatashankar Mahadev, there are two ways: one through steps and other through the jungle. One needs to climb 500 steps and a trekking path from the jungle at the right side after climbing 500 steps. A direction board is placed after 500 steps towards Jatashankar. In monsoon season, after trekking to some distance behind the Temple, one can enjoy tiny waterfalls and have a bath in fresh water collection between big rocks. Complete silence can be enjoyed here with only sounds of birds, monkeys and others.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Girnar
  • Ashok Shilalek
  • Sakkarbaug Zoo
  • Wild Museum
  • Makabara
  • Jain Deresar
  • Narsinh Mehta no Choro
  • Upper Kot
  • Darbar Hall Museum
  • Gayatri Mandir and Vagheshwari Mandir
  • Sonapur
  • Damodar Kund
  • Damodarji Temple
  • Dataar Hills
  • Science Museum
  • Wellington Dam
  • Moti Baug
  • Mujkund Caves
  • Ayurvedic Museum
  • Narsinh Maheta Lake
  • Bahauddin College
  • Kesar Keri (Mangoes)
  • Shri Swaminarayana Mandir
  • Swami Vivekananda Vinay Mandir
  • Swaminarayan Akshardham Mandir (Aksharvadi)

Buy[edit][add listing]

one sealed tin of 900 grams Kesar Keri (Mango Pulp)(The Queen Of Fruits) costs around Rs.100/-

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • If you are pani puri/golgapaa fan then you must try eating near SBI regional business branch where you can taste 7 types of pani puri water.
  • Swati Restaurant, Jayshree Road ,Junagadh
  • Garden Cafe,Junagadh
  • Dahi vada at Nav Jeevan Sweets, Kalwa Chowk
  • Shri Chamunda Lachchhi Shop, 1.5 km from Junagadh Railway Station.
  • Dal Puri and Aaloo Puri available in various stalls near Junagadh museum.
  • sagar Restaurant, Jayshree Road, Near Kalwa Chock, Junagadh
  • Leo Resort ,Bhavnath Taleti Road ,Junagadh
  • Santoor Restaurant, M.G. Road , Junagadh
  • Geeta Lodge, Good Kathiawad Thali, on Station Road.

Budget[edit]

Many small hotels near ST stand are very economical but be ware of hygine issue

Mid-range (Eat)[edit]

  • Patel and Swaminarayan thali near ST stand (Rs. 100/- Thali in March 2013)
  • Swad (Punjabi, Chinese) near Talav darwaja (Avg. Rs.100/- per dish)

Splurge[edit]

Drink[edit][add listing]

Kashmiri Lime Soda Mango Pulp

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Most important thing to know for solo travelers that no Dharamshalas gives accommodation to single travelers. No proper food and accommodation at the base of Girnar mountain. Best way stay in Junagadh city.

Budget[edit]

Hotel Gautham Guest House: Kalwa Chowk, Junagadh. Price: Rs.300 to 500. Phone: 0285-2626432.

Murlidhar Lodge and Guest Hour: Kalwa Chowk, Junagadh. Price: around Rs.300 to 500.

Sarada Lodge: Near Bus Station, Junagadh. Price: around Rs.300 to 500.

Midrange[edit]

  • Hotel Shikhar Palace, Shikhar Complex, Kalwa Chowk. Range Rs.700-Rs.1300 Phone : 02852626596 , 09898155796
  • Lotus Hotel, Station Road, Junagadh. Range: around Rs.1200.

Splurge[edit]

Contact[edit]

Stay safe[edit]

Cope[edit]

Get out[edit]

  • Somnath
  • Gir
  • Dwarka
  • Rajkot.


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Wikipedia:Junagadh