Vadodara, The Cultural City, of magnificent palaces, museums, splendid temples, lush gardens, shady avenues, and world-renowned institutions of learning is perhaps the de-facto cultural capital of Gujarat. It served as the capital of princely Gaekwads, the rule of Laxmi Vilas Palac Sayajirao Gaekwad III (1885- 1920), a great patron of art and learning is said to be the golden era of Vadodara.
Today, Vadodara, The Cultural City, on the banks of river Vishwamitri is a thriving industrial and commercial center and is also regarded as the ‘industrial capital’ of Gujarat.
Vadodara Museum & Picture Gallery: It was founded by Sayajirao III in 1894 and is one of the finest museums in Asia.
Maharaja Sayajirao University: This prestigious university was set up by Maharaja Sayajirao in 1840. The campus is noted for its architectural grandeur.
Sayaji Baug: The public garden with an excellent zoo is the heartthrob of Vadodara.
Nazarbaugh Palace: It was built in 1721 and is noted for the ‘Sheesh Mahal’ or mirror palace made in old classical style.
Kirti Mandir: It is adorned with murals painted by Nandlal Bose.
Dakshinamoorthy Temple: It was constructed by EME school in the cantonment area. The temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is set amidst five Danyan trees and is unique in concept and design.
Some other places of interest are – Tambekar Wada, SCKON Temple, Clock Tower, Khanderao Market, Sursagar Lake, Tapovan Complex, etc.
Ajwa& Nimeta (20kms.)
The twin gardens here are designed on the lines of the famous Brindavan Gardens of Mysore. There is also an amusement park and resort nearby.
Dakor (80 kms.)
This is the second most sacred town in Gujarat, after Dwarka, for the devotees of Lord Krishna. The nearest railhead is at Kheda 54 kms.
Kayavarohan (29 kms.)
The pilgrim site is associated with Lord Lakulish ((Shiva). The main attractions are the idol of Lakulish, a Shivalinga, and pictures showing various yoga forms.
Pavagadh (51 kms.)
The sacred hill of Pavagadh, near Champaner, is was Jain temples, a Kali temple, and a fort on the hill.
Suklatirth (87 kms.)
Own for the legendary shrine of Lord Vishnu, on the banks of river Narmada. An annual fair is held in November. The nearest railhead is at Bharuch, (16kms.).