History

Present day Bhavnagar owes much to the vision of the past ruler Sir Takhtsinhji Gohil (1869-96 AD). The town planning schemes were designed and implemented under the guidance of progressive rulers of Bhavnagar. During the reign of Sir Takhtsinhji, the British State Engineer Proctor Sims supervised the construction of Barton Library, High Court, Alfred High School and Sir Takhtsinhji Hospital.

Takhteshwar Temple (1893 AD) is located on a hill, on a high plinth, offering a commanding view of Bhavnagar. The high shikhara rising above the pillared rectangular mandapa makes it an important landmark.

Barton Library (1895 AD) is a beautiful two storeyed building, appropriately designed for a road junction. It has two wings and a central tower, constructed in ashlar stone masonry, with Gothic arch windows and a sloping roof with Mangalore tiles. It is one of the oldest libraries of Gujarat and also houses a museum.

Gangajalia (1893 AD) is a temple dedicated to Gangadevi, with a chhatri, pavilion and bridge all in white marble. It is located in the middle of a former tank. It was designed by Sir John Griffith, principal of Sir J J School of Arts, Bombay.

Nilambag Palace, now a heritage hotel, is a magnificent building set amidst a huge estate of 10 acres. It was designed by a German architect, as a royal residence in 1859 AD. It combines elements of Indian architecture with a modern outlook.

Town Hall (1932 AD) was formerly a Darbar Hall, where the coronation of Sir Krishnakumarsinhji took place. It is an imposing structure in the colonial style, set in a well laid out garden. Victoria Park covers an area of about 500 acres with diverse flora and fauna. This park is a paradise for bird watchers and nature lovers.

Gandhi Smriti is a memorial, with a library of Gandhian books and photographs about the life of Mahatma Gandhi. It also has a fine collection of art objects representing the culture of the Saurashtra region.

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.

Entertainment in Bhavnagar
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