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Home »Western India
Baroda Map

Vadodara, or Baroda as it is still often called was the capital of the princely state of Gaekwad prior to Independence. The earliest mention of Vadodara is in a grant or charter of 812 that identifies it as Vadapadraka, a village attached to the nearby town of Ankottaka. In the 10th century Vadapadraka replaced Ankottaka as the main town. The city was one time called Chandravati, then Viravati and then Vadpatra because of the abundance of banyan trees on the banks of the Vishwamitri. From Vadpatra it derived its present name. Today, Vadodara, is a pleasant medium-sized city with some fascinating museums, art galleries as well as a fine park.

Vadodara’s chief attractions can be present in Sayaji Bagh, a large green park. Situated here are a considerable number of museums, the planetarium, zoo as well as a vintage toy train. Of particular interest is the Baroda Museum & Picture Gallery which houses art & textiles from across the world, Gujarati archaeological remains & Moghul miniatures. South of the centre, the Maharaja Fateh Singh Museum houses a royal art collection including copies of European masters & examples of Graeco-Roman, Chinese & Japanese art.

Beyond Vadodara, is the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Champener, a ruined Muslim city. The Hill of Pavagadh, with its ruined fort rises beside Champener in levels. In the month of Chaitra (March/April), a major festival takes place at the foot of the hill, honouring the goddess Mahakali.

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