Ahmedabad also known as Karnavati or Amdavad is the largest city and former capital of the Indian state of Gujarat
. The city is the administrative headquarters of Ahmedabad district and is the judicial capital of Gujarat as the Gujarat High Court
is located here. With a city population of more than 5.5 million and an extended population of 6.3 million it is the fifth largest city and seventh largest metropolitan area of India
. Ahmedabad is located on the banks of the River Sabarmati, 32 km (20 mi) from the state capital Gandhinagar
Cityscape and Culture:
The architecture of Ahmedabad ranges from the ancient to the very modern. Early in the city's history, under Ahmed Shah, builders fused Hindu craftsmanship with Persian architecture, giving rise to the Indo-Saracenic style. Many mosques in the city were built in this fashion.Sidi Saiyyed Mosque
is one of the most famous mosques in Gujarat. The mosque was built in the last year of the Sultanate of Gujarat. It is entirely arcuated and it has ten stone latticework windows (jalis) on the side and rear arches. Private mansions (Haveli) from this era have unique carvings and can be seen in the ancient pol (narrow streets) of Ahmedabad.
Ahmedabad observes a wide range of festivals. Popular celebrations and observances include Uttarayan, an annual kite-flying day on 14 and 15 January. Nine nights of Navratri are celebrated with people performing Garba, the most popular folk dance of Gujarat, at venues across the city. The festival of lights, Deepavali, is celebrated with the lighting of lamps in every house, decorating the floors with rangoli, and the lighting of firecrackers. Other religious festivals such as Holi, Ganesh Chaturthi, Gudi Padwa, Eid ul-Fitr and Christmas are also celebrated. The annual Rath Yatra procession on the Ashadh-sud-bij date of the Hindu calendar and the procession of Tajia during the Muslim holy month of Muharram are important events.
The Sanskar Kendra
, one of the many buildings in Ahmedabad designed by Le Corbusier, is a city museum depicting the history, art, culture and architecture of Ahmedabad. The Gandhi Smarak Sangrahalaya
and the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Memorial
have permanent displays of photographs, documents and other articles relating to Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel. The Calico Museum Of Textiles
has a large collection of Indian and international fabrics, garments and textiles. The Hazrat Pir Mohammad Shah Library has a collection of rare original manuscripts in Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Sindhi and Turkish. There is Vechaar Utensils Museum
which have utensils of stainless steel, glass, brass, copper, bronze, zinc and German silver.
Gardens and Parks:
Some of the most popular and visited gardens in the city are Law Garden
, Victoria Garden and Bal Vatika. Victoria Garden is located at the southern edge of the Bhadra Fort
and contains a statue of Queen Victoria. Bal Vatika is a children's park situated on the grounds of Kankaria
Lake and also houses an amusement park and a water park. Law Garden was named after the College of Law situated close to it. Other main gardens in the city are Parimal Garden, Usmanpura Garden, Prahlad Nagar Garden and Lal Darwaja Garden. Ahmedabad's Kamla Nehru Zoological Park houses a number of endangered species including flamingoes, caracals, Asiatic wolves and chinkara.
The man-made Lake Kankaria, built in 1451 AD, is one of the biggest lakes in Ahmedabad. In earlier days, it used to be known by the name Qutub Hoj or Hauj-e-Kutub. It has an approximate circumference of 1.4 miles (2.3 km) and 34 sides, and is located in the southern part of the city in Maninagar
. Vastrapur Lake
is in western part of Ahmedabad. Lal Bahadur Shastri lake in Bapunagar
is coming up on an area of 1.36 lakh sq metres. Another 34 lakes are planned in and around Ahmedabad of which 5 lakes will be developed by AMC and the rest 29 will be developed by AUDA.