Porbandar district,Gujarat

Porbandar district is one of the 33 districts of Gujarat state in western India. The district covers an area of 2,298 km². It had a population of 5,86,062 of which 48.77% were urban as of 2011 census [1] This district was carved out of Junagadh District. It lies on the Kathiawar peninsula. Porbandar city is the administrative headquarters of this district. This district is surrounded by Jamnagar district and Devboomi Dwarka to the north, Junagadh district and Rajkot district to the east and the Arabian Sea to the west and south.

Harappan settlement (1600-1400 BCE)

Onshore explorations in and around Porbandar brought to light, for the first time, the remains of a late Harappan settlement dating back to the 16th – 14th century BCE, which is similar to that from Bet Dwarka. This is another evidence to suggest that the Harappan legacy of maritime activity continued till the late Harappan period on the Saurashtra coast. The discovery of ancient jetties along the Porbandar creek signifies the importance of Porbandar as an active centre of maritime activities in the past. Indian mythology says it is the birthplace of Sudhaama (Friend of Lord Krishna), hence it is referred to as Sudhaamapuri or Sudhamapuri.

Princely Porbandar (1600 CE onwards)

Porbandar was formerly the seat of the eponymous princely state in British India. The ruling family of the state belonged to the Jethwa clan of rajputs and had been established in the area since at least the mid-16th century. The state was subordinate to the Mughal governor of Gujarat until being overrun by the marathas in the latter half of the 18th century, whereafter they came under the authority of the Gaekwad court at Baroda, and eventually of the Peshwa. In common with the other states of Kathiawar, the state first came into the ambit of British influence in 1807, when the HEIC guaranteed security in the area in lieu of a fixed annual tribute to be paid to the Peshwa and the Gaekwad. In 1817, the Peshwa ceded his share to the HEIC; in 1820, the Gaekwad agreed to have the HIEC collect his due tributes in Kathiawar and remit the same to his treasury.

Huzoor Palace built by last ruler of Princely State of Probandar, Rana Natwarsinhji, in early 20th century, stands near sear shore at Marine Drive in city.

During the British Raj, the state covered an area of 1,663 square kilometres (642 sq mi), encompassing 106 villages and a population, in 1921, of over 100,000 people. It enjoyed a revenue of Rs.21,00,000/-. By 1947, the rulers held the style of “Highness” and the title of “Maharaj Rana Sahib”; they were entitled to a salute of 13 guns as a hereditary distinction.

Upon the Independence of India in 1947, the state acceded unto the dominion of India. It was merged with the ‘United State of Kathiawar’, effective from February 15, 1948 and eventually came to form part of the present-day state of Gujarat.Last King of Porbandar was Natwarsinhji Bhavsinhji Maharaj.

Tourist attractions

  • Kirti Mandir (birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi)
  • Sudama Mandir (Lord Krishna’s Friend Sudama used to live here)
  • Khimeshwar Mahadev -Kuchchadi (1600 years old temple as per Archaeological survey of India)
  • Barda Wildlife sanctuary (located at about 15 km from Porbandar, ideal for tracking)
  • Bird Sanctuary (various species of birds like teals, fowls, flamingos, ibis, curlews can be seen)
  • Bileshwara Shiva temple (built in 7th century)
  • Ghumli (37 km from the city, Capital of Jethwa kingdom till 1313, listed by Archaeological survey of India)
  • Sandipani Vidyaniketan (managed by Shri Ramesh Oza, a beautiful campus to see)
  • Ram Krishna Mission(Swami Vivekananda stayed here for 4 months)
  • Nehru Planetarium Tara Mandir: Tara is Gujarati for stars. Tara Mandir houses a planetarium which is among the first two planetariums started in India by Shri Jawaharlal Nehru.
  • Chadeshwar Mahadev & Ajani Mataji’s temple – is located at Somnath Highway 3 km (2 mi) from Porbandar is believed to be from Pandava’s Era
    Bharat Mandir
  • Chowpati Beach
  • Rokadia Hanuman temple
  • Other places of interest

  • Gita Mandir
  • Gayatri Mandir
  • Ram Dhoon Mandir
  • Rana Bapu’s Mahal
  • Satyanarayan’s Mandir
  • Zaveri Bungalow
  • Kamla Nehru park
  • Bhutnath Mandir – is located opp. Bhavshiji Hospital (Civil Hospital)
  • Shri Hari Mandir
  • Many vandis (community centres)
  • Swaminarayan Mandir
  • Sani Dev Temple – Hathla
  • RangBai Temple
  • jannat beach (near rangbai)
  • Randal Mataji Temple (Jamnagar Road Bagvadar)
  • Bhutnath Temple