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Bhavnagar

The tourist attractions in Bhavnagar:  are interesting though not many in number as the city is of recent origin. Bhavnagar is a sprawling industrial city and an important trading post for cotton products. Bhavnagar is located in the the eastern coast of Saurashtra, a peninsular part of the state of Gujarat and reflects the warmth and vibrancy of the culture of Gujarat.

History of Bhavnagar: Bhavnagar was founded in 1743 by Bhavsinhji Gohil, at the place of a small village Vadva, what used to be near the present heart of town.The name Bhavnagar was derived from the king's own name, the suffix nagar meaning a city.It continued to be a princely state enjying the patronage of benign rulers till she was finally merged into India at the time of Independence and formed the erstwhile state of Saurashtra. It finally became a part of the present-day state of Gujarat.

Attractions in Bhavnagar: One of the important tourist attractions of Bhavnagar is the Takhteshwar Temple, built on a small hillock overlooking the city and dedicated to Lord Shiva. It not only offers a great view of the city and the adjacent Gulf of Cambay, but is also an important pilgrim center. Gandhi Smriti Museum or Gandhi Memorial has a collection of photographs and memorabilia associated with Mahatma Gandhi. Near Gandhi Smriti, the traveler can see the Clock Tower, which is an important landmark of this city. Gaurishankar Lake is an important picnic spot with its well-maintained parks and a small planetarium. The Nilambag Palace, now a heritage hotel, is a magnificent building combining elements of Indian architecture with a modern outlook. The Central Salt and Marine Research Institute is an important place to visit for tourists as well as for researchers in science. Samaldas College, established 100 years ago, is an important monument and it is said that Mahatma Gandhi was once a student here. The Barton Library with its museum, located at the heart of the city is worth visiting as it is one of the oldest libraries in Gujarat. The Water Lock Gate of Bhavnagar, which maintain the water level of the docks, thus helping ships to stay afloat at the time of low tide is the first of its kind in Gujarat and is interesting. Bhavnagar has many good educational institutes with excellent architecture- Sir P P Science Institute, Shamaldas College (Mahatma Gandhi studied here in 1884 AD), Alfred High School and Central Salt Research Institute.

Excursions around Bhavnagar: There are number of interesting tourist places around Bhavnagar. Forty-two kilometers northeast of Bhavnagar is the ancient city of Valabhipur, which is well known for its ruins. Velavadar National Park is 65 km north of Bhavnagar and is famous for its protected species of blackbucks. The town of Palitana, which is 51 km southwest of Bhavnagar, is famous for its Jain temples. It is one of the holiest pilgrim sites for Jains. and has 863 temples on hilltops. Sihor (28 km) and Mahuva shore (150 km) are other places to visit.