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Saturday
Apr032010

Day 87 Adalaj Vav (Water Well) 2 April 2010

 

I see no well!!

Today I am off to look at a water well. Now you might well think why would anyone hire a car and a driver for four hours just to look at a well…..In India it is considered woman’s work to fetch the water and can be very heavy hot work during the very hot summer months. In 1499 Queen Rudabai (I am sure she did not fetch water) decided that the fetching of water could also be a social occasion so she built a rather special well called Adalaj Wav (Vav)These wells are also called baolis and there are now a number of them in Gujarat all built around the same time.

Steps going down to well

Adalaj Vav is one of the finest step wells and was built to conserve water and provide a cool and pleasant place for social interaction. A series of beautiful platforms and galleries were built all the way down to the water platform.

Some of the Pavilions

The well

The Stepped Corridor leads down five stories to a depth of 100ft through pavilions with some very ornate carvings. The pavilions are supported by rows of carved pillars and the pavilions were the main meeting places. The water was actually drawn in the normal way from the top of the well. I was amazed at the work that must have gone into building this well as it is all underground so required a lot of digging and construction and all this over 500 years ago. I imagine the men did have a hand in the building and digging!!

The Old Fort

On my return to Ahmedabad I decided to take a walk to the old Ahmedabad Fort going through the narrow lanes. Unfortunately the fort was very badly affected by the last earthquake and has never really been restored. Like all things in India there are limited funds and following the earthquake there were far more important things to spend the money on.

 



Reader Comments (3)

Hi John - many thanks for sharing your journey. For me it has served as a happy reminder to my own journey a couple of years ago as well as whetting my appetite to return next winter and explore some of the places that I missed last time. Enjoy your last few days and hopefully leave that old boily in India where it belongs!

Hello Maureen, For me it has been a pleasure to be able to do the diary. Though I do it mainly for selfish reasons in that it helps me to remember and allows Gemma and Adam to follow my journey it is always nice to know that at least one other person has enjoyed it.
John

Very well written... I guess you have visited more of my country than I have ! :-)

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