A weekend in Vadodara

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My last trip to Vadodara left me wondering as to why I didn’t visit this place sooner. To answer that, let me guide you through the wonders that Vadodara holds apart from its rich traditions, majestic kingdoms, and historical eminence. This place transpired into a gateway for a fun weekend that otherwise would have looked bleak, if I had returned home from my canceled client meeting. Also, a side note: Try visiting Vadodara during Navratri, I have heard that the place becomes an entity in itself during the celebrations.

I was blissfully unaware of Vadodara until my driver pointed it out to me. I mean, I knew it existed, but I never had any specific associations with its name, which quite honestly never invigorated any excitement. I mean, I would have shared the same excitement while coming to Ahmedabad before I ended up going to Vadodara. I thank the heavens for that decision to book a comfortable tempo traveler in Ahmedabad, for which I could concur on the decision to visit the place.

A travel unplanned

I was bitter about the client cancellation of my meeting but I had the weekend to get over that. And Vadodara did work its magic on me. So, I cut the itinerary in two halves covering all the places that I could potentially visit.

Saturday:

  1. Makarpura Palace
  2. Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park
  3. Jambughoda Wildlife Sanctuary
  4. Sursagar Lake

Sunday:

  1. Sri Aurobindo Ashram
  2. Laxmi Vilas Palace
  3. Narmada Canal
  4. Kabirvad

Saturday: Discovering the first half

If movies came in episodes, my trip would fit the description. I knew I had to chaperone myself into the city, so I booked a licensed cab in Ahmedabad to help me reach Vadodara. My tempo driver canceled, unfortunately, and I had to devise an alternative.

The first place on the list was the Makarpura Palace and frankly is the best place to visit during the day time heat. Its architecture has an Italian touch that could interest a lot of architecture nerds like me. Now, this place has been turned into a training school for the Indian Air Force.

The next stop was amidst the Pavagadh hills. Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park is a UNESCO accredited heritage site and is known for its intricate architecture. The moment I stepped in here, I was looking for photo ops. I spent an hour here to replenish my Instagram photo collection.

The third place was probably one of my favorites from the first day. Jambughoda Wildlife is a reserve that is known for animal species like the sloth, boars, wild bears, and antelopes. I took the safari tour, which seemed to be a reliable and pocket-friendly option to get around this reserve.

The Sursagar lake was my last destination for the day, and I decided to end the day near the lake. Because nothing’s better than the cold breeze blowing over a lake after a day’s journey, I could’ve stayed back till the sun fell, but I was honestly too tired.

Sunday: More Revelations to Unveil

I wanted my Sunday morning to be a bit less chaotic than usual. So, I decided to drop by at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. Well, I can’t spiritually heal my wounded soul, but the plausibility of it happening in a day helped me smile for a bit. It stays open till 7 pm, so if you want to drop other plans and stay here, then you can. I, for once, couldn’t stay there for more than an hour. I realized that meditation is not my thing.

The Laxmi Vilas palace had to be one of the most beautiful architectural splendors in India. I went inside the museum, and I honestly had a great time. Being the nerd that I am, I couldn’t help but be in awe, staring at its architecture.

I think I misplaced the Narmada Canal in my itinerary placement since it is ideally the place that one should visit in the morning for the sunrise. It was beautiful, regardless.

Now, the last place for my two-day excursion was Kabirvad. This place offered me the tranquility that I have searched for across the country. Just kidding, the area was tranquil enough for me to stop my usual headache montage.

This calls for a revisit

While I do feel that another visit is necessary to fill out the blanks that I had left because of the time constraint, Vadodara does hold a lot of potential for a nice getaway for anyone’s weekend. Especially if you were screwed over by a last-minute cancellation of a client meeting at Ahmedabad.