Monday, February 21, 2011

Uparkot

Uparkot


Photos



Uparkot

The oldest part of Junagadh, and the center of any visit to the city, is the upper citadel, known as Uparkot. Over 2300 years old, with walls up to 20 m high in some places, Uparkot is what allowed Junagadh to withstand a 12-year siege at one point. It is believed that these caves belong to 1st-4th Century AD and are gilded with beautiful pillars and entrances, water cisterns, horseshoe shaped chatiya windows, an assembly hall and cell for meditation. There is also a 300 ft.-deep moat inside the walls, that reportedly used to be inhabited by crocodiles, so that if any attacker managed to surmount the high fortifications, they would then either be exposed on the upper battlements or fall into the crocodile-infested trench.

Just inside the entrance are the insignia of some of Uparkot’s former rulers and temples to Ganesh, Hanuman and Shakti. Closeby are two medieval cannons named Neelam and Manek, forged in Cairo and brought by the Turks who sailed to Saurashtra to aid in defending Diu against the Portuguese.

Entry to Uparkot is Rs.2/- (Rs.10/- for a vehicle); it is open from 7am-7pm every day. The following places (Jami Masjid, Adi-Kadi Vav, Buddhist caves and Navghan Kuvo are all within Uparkot.)

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