What is the significance of Pavagadh Archeological Park?

Champaner Pavagadh was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 2004. This medieval city is filled with monuments and various artifacts of historical significance. Champaner- Pavagadh has located about 45 km from Vadodara in the Godhra district. The site is actually situated in the spectacular views of Pavagadh Hills.

Significant features

  • Architectural structures of the site − Champaner Pavagadh is a site with a variety of architectural structures like water tanks, temples, other secular structures, etc. Some of the important monuments include Lakulisha Temple, Jain temples dedicated to Suparsvanatha, Chandraprabha and Parsvanatha, the famous Kalika Mata Temple situated at the summit of Pavagadh, royal fortification at the foothill, the Atak fort, the Pavagadh fort, etc. Thus, the spectacular variations of structures give it a unique identity.

  • Blend of Hindu and Muslim Architecture − The Champaner Pavagadh offers an explicit blend of Hindu and Muslim art and architecture noticeable within one site. This is also with special reference to Jami Masjid i.e. the Great Mosque which was influenced by regional sultanates in this region. It also served as an exemplar for later Islamic architecture.

  • A living place of worship − Kalikamata Mandir located on the foothills of Pavagadh till date attracts a number of tourists. It is a temple dedicated to one of the principal deities of Chauhan rulers of Pavagadh. Thus, it is an important center of pilgrimage for followers of the Hindu religion.

  • An example of a short-living capital − In AD 1484, Mahmud Begda, the Sultan of Gujarat made Chamapner his second capital. However, the glory of Champaner as capital was limited and Emperor Humayun plundered and ransacked it in AD 1535 after which the capital was shifted to Ahmedabad. It was unable to regain its glory even during the reign of Marathas or British rule with its topography and natural settings.

  • Waters structures of the site − Helical Stepwell and Geban step well as important examples of Baolis or step wells that played a crucial role as water bodies in the day-to-day life of the people. Kabutar Khana is one of the most note-worthy water pavilions on the banks of Bada Talao. Thus, there are different patterns of water bodies which can be noticed in Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park.