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Champaner Pavagadh

Located in Panchmahal, Gujarat, the historical city of Champaner is 68 kilometers from Godhra and 50 kilometers from Varodara. It is an important archaeological site that lies on Pavagadh Hills. Built by a Gujarat Sultan Kahmud Begada, the site was declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2004. It has been maintained as an Islamic pre-Mughal city. The Champaner-Pavagadh area is replete with forts and historical sites that speak of the glorious past of the area. Between Pavagadh Hills and across Champaner City lie many important historical, archaeological and cultural heritage icons. Popularly called the Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park, this place is studded with temples, tombs, mosques, arches, entrance gates and residential complexes. One can find old agricultural structures like tanks and step wells built during the 8th and 14th centuries. A large number of pilgrims arrive at the Kalika Mata Temple built on Pavagadh Hill at an altitude of 2600 feet.

The historic town has two precincts—the Royal Enclosure and Jahanpanah. While the first has stone walls, gardens and gates, Jahanpanah has paved streets and a modern road system. Jahanpanah was the capital of Begharha.

Other Buildings and Sites Nearby

Mosques of Champaner

There are several prominent and big mosques around Champaner.  They reflect the glory of Mughal rule in Gujarat region.

Jama Masjid

It is located in the center part of the area. The masjid houses two minarets, each 30 meter long. Intricate carvings also adorn the mosque.

Nagina Masjid

This one has three big domes covering the main hall with beautifully chiseled columns.

Kevada Masjid

This masjid is particularly well known for its tank that’s intended to perform religious rituals.

Sahar ki Masjid

This one is believed to be a worshipping place of the sultans.

Lila Gumbai ki Masjid

Placed on a high platform, this masjid serves as a spacious prayer hall.

Sikander Shah’s Tomb

Sikander Shah was the erstwhile ruler of Champaner. He was assassinated in 1526 AD and his mortal remains were buried here. It is a beautiful stone structure displaying excellent craftsmanship.

Sakar Khan Dargah

This is supposed to be the largest mausoleum in the old city area. It has a large dome and it lies on a lowplatform.

Mandvi/Customs House

It was built as a royal palace and is located in the middle of Fort Champaner. Marathas used Mandvi as a customs house.

Makai Kothar/Navlakha Kothar

Both are large structures build with bricks intended to be used as army’s grain storage.


The citadel is supposed to be constructed by Mahmud Begda. Its walls are built north-south, having many gates. The gates are two-storied, with watch keeper’s quarters.

Helical Stepwell

This was dug in 16th century. Its spiral staircase going down to the bottom of the well is 1.2m wide.

Brick Tomb

It is the only one of its kind. It is constructed using bricks. It has four arched gates on all four sides and it is adorned with four corner domes.

Pavagadh Fort and Early Temples

The Pavagadh fort was very prominent in the Solankikingdom. Its walls still stand tall here and there as mute witnesses to its historical past. Early Hindu and Jain temples are scattered in the fort.

Gates of the Fort Walls

A huge wall was built around the Pavagadh fort as a defense fortification. The 13th century wall had four gates, Budhiya gate in the west with three ways, Atak Gate with two ways, Machi gate with four ways and Sadan Shah Gate which was dug through solid rock.

Pavagadh Hill/Kalika Mata Temple

A temple dedicated to goddess Kali, Kalika Mata temple is on the peak of thePavagadh hill. The temple is said to be oldest temple in the entire area built between 10th and 11th centuries. It is a renowned pilgrimage center long before Champaner became a city and the pilgrimages are still continued after hundreds of years after the city’s decline. Even today devotees walk through a 5 kilometer jungle path to reach the temple to offer prayers. Now a modern cable car takes visitors to the summit. Pilgrims can rest in the Machi Haveli.

Jambughoda Wildlife Sanctuary

Wild life enthusiasts will have a great time visiting Jambughoda Wildlife Sanctuary, which is only 20 kilometers away. Various spices of wild life are found here among bamboo, mahuda and teak trees. Jackal, hyena, barking deer, wild boar, blue bull and leopard roam in the lush green vegetation. Facilities as hiking tracks, camping sites and a forest rest house are available here.  The sanctuary is easily accessible from Shivrajpur which has a railway station and bus stand.

Dhanpari Eco Campsite

It is in the Jambughoda Wildlife Sanctuary and it is under the jurisdiction of Panchmahal District of Central Gujarat. 

Kevdi Eco Campsite

Kevdi is on the road between Jambughoda Sanctuary and Ratanmahal Sanctuary. It is known for its bio diversity and tribal communities.  The star attraction here is the flying squirrel.

Useful Information

Accessibility: The place is easily reachable by road

Location: Champaner is situated 45 km from Varodara

How to get here: Buses and private taxis ply from Vadodara to Champaner.

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Champaner Pavagadh
Champaner Pavagadh
Champaner Pavagadh
Champaner Pavagadh
Champaner Pavagadh
Champaner Pavagadh

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