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Bhavnagar district,Gujarat

Bhavnagar About this sound pronunciation (help·info) is a city in the Bhavnagar district of the Saurashtra region of the Gujarat state of India. It was founded in 1724 by Bhavsinhji Gohil (1703–1764). It was the capital of Bhavnagar State, which was a princely state before it was merged into the Indian Union in 1948. It is now the administrative headquarter of the Bhavnagar district.

Bhavnagar is situated 198 km from the state capital Gandhinagar and to the west of the Gulf of Khambhat. It has always been an important city for trade with many large and small scale industries along with the world’s largest ship breaking yard (Alang) located 50 km away. Palitana Jain temples, which are important holy places for Jains, are situated 56 km away, and Velavadar national park, home to endangered species of wolves, antelopes and blackbucks, is situated 42 km away.

History

The Gohil Rajput of the Suryavanshi clan faced severe competition in Marwar. Around 1260 AD, they moved down to the Gujarat coast and established three capitals; Sejakpur, Umrala and Sihor.

In 1722–1723, forces led by Khanthaji Kadani and Pilaji Gaekwad attempted to raid Sihor but were repelled by Maharaja Bhavsinhji Gohil. After the war Bhavsinhji realised the reason for repeated attack was the location of Sihor (old Bhavnagar). In 1823, he established a new capital near Vadva village, 20 km away from Sihor, and named it Bhavnagar. It was a carefully chosen strategic location because of its potential for maritime trade. Naturally, Bhavnagar City became the capital of Bhavnagar State Bhavnagar Boroz.

The old town of Bhavnagar was a fortified town with gates leading to other important regional towns. It remained a major port for almost two centuries, trading commodities with Mozambique, Zanzibar, Singapore, and the Persian Gulf. The current Royal Family of Bhavnagar comprises Maharaja Vijayraj Singh Gohil and Maharani Samyukta Kumari, Prince Yuvraj Jaiveerraj Singh Gohil and Princess Brijeshwari Kumari Gohil.

Tourism

  • Takhteshwar Temple is one of the prime places to see in Bhavnagar. Takhteshwar Temple (1893) is a white marble temple, on a high plinth, offering a commanding view of Bhavnagar. The high shikhara rising above the pillared rectangular mandapa makes it an important landmark. Lord Shiva is worshipped as the main deity of this shrine
  • Nilambag Palace: The residence of the current Maharaja of Bhavnagar, HH Maharaol Vijayrajsinhji Virbhadrasinhji Gohil & his family; is now also a heritage palace hotel.
  • Mangalsinhji Mahal Palace: This palace is the residence of the members of the Bhavnagar royal family (family of Maharajkumar Mangalsinhji Takhatsinhji of Bhavnagar). It is a historical property in the heart of Bhavnagar city and is designed on traditional Kathiawari architectural principles. It is now the formal residence of the descendants of Rajkumar Chandrajitsinhji Mangalsinhji of Bhavnagar.
  • Bhav Vilas Palace: This palatial property was formerly the club-house for the royal family of the erstwhile princely state of Bhavnagar, now the residence of Maharajkumar Shivbhadrasinhji Krishnakumarsinhji Gohil & his family. It is famous for its wildlife collection & lake-side views.
  • Gaurishankar Lake is beautiful lake between small hills. It was made by Shree Gaurishankar Oza, the Deewan of Bhavnagar.There is Balvatika for Children, and temple of Lord Shiva. There is a big palace for Highness Family. It is peaceful and lovely place.
  • Seashore at Ghogha (About 22 km. from Bhavangar): Sea-side palace retreat of the Bhavnagar royal family, also now a hotel-guesthouse for travellers with excellent sea-side views & cuisine.
  • Victoria Park: It covers an area of about 500 acres (2 km²) with diverse flora and fauna. This park attracts bird watchers and nature lovers. It is a forest conserved by the Indian Government within the boundary of the Bhavnagar city. The forest has varieties of Indian birds like waders, raptors and perching birds that attract bird watchers and nature admirers.
  • Gopnath Beach offers colourful bird life, limestone cliffs, a sea breeze, and scenic views. It also houses the world’s biggest ship breaking zone, and the Talja temple, which is built on a 350 foot high volcanic hill.
  • Nava Bandar (New Port)
  • Barton Library
  • Darbargadh: Once the seat of the Bhavnagar royal family, now rented out to the State Bank of India is also their headquarters (formerly the State Bank of Saurashtra)
  • Ganga Deri (Ganga Jalia Talav): This monument is a miniature of the Taj Mahal constructed entirely in marble and is one of the masterpieces of old times given by the Maharaja.
  • Alang Ship Breaking Yard: (About 50 km from Bhavangar on the way to Talaja)
  • Gandhi Smriti: A memorial, with a library of Gandhian books and photographs about the life of Mahatma Gandhi. It also has a fine collection of art objects representing the culture of the Saurashtra region.
  • BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir, Aksharwadi, Bhavnagar.
  • CSMCRI (Central Salt and Marine Chemicals Research Institute): The only constituent laboratory of CSIR (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research) in Gujarat. A significant research effort is being carried out here to develop Bio-Diesel from Jatropha.
  • Ghogha Beach (19 km away from Bhavnagar): It is a favourite spot for local trips.
  • Oldest Mosque during the period of Hazarat Muhanmad Paygambr of Gujarat is in Ghogha.
  • Piram Bet (About 20 km away from Ghogha Beach): treasured fossils and old caves
  • Malnath Shiv Temple (About 15 to 20 km from Bhavnagar)
  • Khodiyar Temple.
  • Pillgarden: A beautiful garden in the city. Also called Sardar Baug.
  • Palitana: Famous for its beautiful Jain temples. A pilgrimage place for Jains.
  • Velavadar: Blackbuck National Park.
  • Bhavnagar has Saurashtra Largest Mall named “Himalaya Mall”, There are various shops like Reliance Market, Reliance Footprint, Reliance Digital, Greenfiber and many more and there is one cinema also which is Maxus and soon going to open 9D Digital Cinema.
  • Sihor Brahm Kund Made By Siddhraj Jaysinh Rathod.
  • Gautmeshwar Temple. ( Gautam Rushi Do the Sadhna.)
  • Sihori Mata Temple.