6 Must See Museums In Ahmedabad, Gujarat

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Museums in Ahmedabad
Museums in Ahmedabad – Places to visit in Ahmedabad

Most big cities have museums that showcase all that is important and precious about that city and region. They chronicle the history through tangible pieces of it, for the current generations to see it with their own eyes. I pick up 6 museums in Ahmedabad that showcase 6 different dimensions of the city – from its political lineage to its industrial heritage to its cultural threads.

Museums in Ahmedabad – Tourist Places.

Patan Patola from Gujarat
Patan Patola from Gujarat – many like these can be seen at Calico

Calico Museum, Ahmedabad

If there is one museum you have to see in Ahmedabad – it has to be Calico Museum of Textiles. This museum takes you back to the textile history of the Indian subcontinent with meticulously preserved ancient textiles, some of which go back hundreds of years. History of textiles is closely associated with the history of both Ahmedabad and Gujarat. What makes this museum unique is the way an old house has been conserved and used for museum displays. The whole ambiance just takes you back in time, as you go up and down in haphazard houses and see the finely carved woodwork all around. Textiles are handled with utmost care and you are not allowed to go close to them, forget about touching them. The museum draws its inspiration from Ananda K Coomaraswamy – the noted art historian.

Calico is the strictest museum you would ever see in India. You can only see it as part of 2 conducted tours, 6 days a week. You must pre-book the tours as only limited numbers of people are admitted on a day. You must leave all your belongings – especially camera and mobile phone at the gate and must follow the guide and her instructions all the times. The guide is not very knowledgeable but you really do not have a choice, she can be gentler is a feeling you would step out with. They do have a unique museum shop where you can buy some books and prints that are difficult to find in the market otherwise.

Entry – Free.

Website – The Calico Museum of Textiles.

Time – Morning tour at 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM and evening at 2:30-4:30 PM.

Photography – Not allowed.

Vintage Car Museum, Ahmedabad

Vintage Car museum Ahmedabad
Vintage Car, Museums in Ahmedabad – Places to visit in Ahmedabad

If you have an eye for vintage cars, World Vintage Car Museum is a go-to place for you in Ahmedabad. Museum showcases the car collections of Pranlal Bhagilal Patel and family. Our guide in a lighter vein said, when Sardar Patel was uniting India by bringing these kingdoms together, this Patel went around buying their cars. Oldest car here is a 1906 Minerva and youngest is the 1972 Lincoln. A fair share of these cars come from erstwhile royal families of pre-independent India and the curator has smartly put red boards to announce which car was acquired from which kingdom. On my tour, I could spot vintage cars from Mysore, Indore, Jaipur, Baroda, Jamnagar, Jhansi, Chettinad and Hyderabad. Another gallery – and gallery here means an open air covered garage like area – has American cars, followed by one on British cars.

You need good half a day to go around this museum that is designed like a theme park. Our guide informed us that all the cars are in working condition and are regularly driven to ensure that. The maintenance of cars is impeccable as their shining colors and clean surfaces testify. We were told that these cars can be rented too, and apparently, lot of them get hired for wedding processions.

Located on outskirts of the city, with no signboards pointing towards it, its a bit of an effort to reach this museum, but it definitely worth the effort.

Entry – Ticketed and includes a guide fee. I paid Rs 100/- but check for latest price.

Website – World Vintage Car Museum.

Photography – Allowed.

Time – 9:00 AM – 6:00PM.

Lalbhai Dalpatbhai Museum, Ahmedabad

Display at Lalbhai Dalpatbhai Museum, Ahmedabad
Display in the garden of Lalbhai Dalpatbhai Museum, Ahmedabad

This quaint museum is located in the campus of L D Institute of Indology in Navrangpura near Gujarat University. It is a traditional museum with a collection of Indian sculptures, manuscript paintings, miniature paintings and drawings, woodcarving pieces, ancient coins and some exquisite beadwork. The collections belong to Seth Kasturbhai Lalbhai and were opened to the public in the shape of this museum in 1984.

Some of the exclusive collections here involve painted manuscripts, mostly belonging to the early Jain literature. The beadwork panels are also very local and are not seen in many places across the country. N C Mehta Gallery of Miniature paintings is a part of this museum too. You can see folios of Gita Govinda, Kalpasutra, and scenes of various royal palaces.

You need a couple of hours to see the museum at leisure. Do not miss some of the displays in the garden.

Entry – Free.

Time – 10:30 – 5:30 Tuesday to Sunday, closed on public holidays.

Photography – Not Allowed.

Website – L D Museum.

Kites Museum

Kites Museum, Ahmedabad
Kites Museum, Places to visit in Ahmedabad

Come Sankranti in middle of January and Ahmedabad skies are full of colorful kites. If you cannot be there in January, the next best thing to do is to visit the Kite museum and see the scenes of that celebration and also understand the historical relevance of kites in the life of an Ahmedabadi. Kite museum is a rather small museum located in the Sanskar Bhavan that was also designed by La Corbusier who is better known for designing the city of Chandigarh.

You can see both the kites and the pictures of the kite festival where people are flying them from their rooftops. It is a small museum that you do not need more than hour to see in detail.

Sanskar Bhavan also has a museum dedicated to the city of Ahmedabad – documenting its history and evolution.

Entry – Free.

Time – 10:00 – 6:00 Tuesday to Sunday.

Photography – Not Allowed.

Sardar Patel Museum, Ahmedabad

Sardar Patel Museum, Museums in Ahmedabad
Sardar Patel Museum, Museums in Ahmedabad

This is a museum I discovered by chance when I was waiting for the tour to begin at Calico Museum. This fort like building is dedicated to the memory of Ahmedabad’s favorite son Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. It documents his life and times through neatly designed displays. Lot of his personal belongings can be seen along with a depiction of all the houses he ever lived in. Photographs, of course, re-create the era of the freedom struggle.

A maze-like building takes you through a basement that is created like a jail with dioramas of Indian leaders inside the jail to remind you of the kind of life they led to give us freedom. It is one of the better-documented and displayed museums of modern India.

You need about 2 hours to see it properly. A 3D laser show is also available on weekends for an additional ticket.

Entry – Rs 20/- for adults, Rs 10/- for children.

Time – 9:30 – 5:00, Closed on Mondays.

Photography – Not Allowed.

Website – Sardar Patel Museum.

Vechaar at Vishalla – A Utensils Museum

Vishalla Utensils museum, Ahmedabad
Utensils museum, Museums in Ahmedabad

Anyone who goes to Ahmedabad gets a recommendation to visit Vishalla for that authentic Gujarati thali served in the traditional way where you have to sit on the ground in front of a wooden chowki. A part of the Vishalla complex showcases the collection of traditional utensils by Mr. Surendra Patel under the guidance of Art Historian Jyotindra Jain. Museum itself is a mud structure.

Displayed on a tiered structure these utensils are a part of the cultural heritage of Gujarat. When you go around this museum, look at the material used to build them. The size of utensils to understand how many people would have been fed with the food cooked in them, the shapes to fit the oven of the yesteryears. Finally look at the artwork that each of them carries making each piece unique even when it is a part of the ensemble. There are more than 3000 utensils of different kinds on display. The design of display space impressed me as much as the displays did.

Entry – Rs 10/-

Time – 3:00 – 10:30 PM All Days.

Photography – Not Allowed.

Website – Vechaar Utensils Museum.

Put together, all these Museums in Ahmedabad present a potpourri of the city’s history and its heritage. Add all these 6 Museums in Ahmedabad to your Places to visit in Ahmedabad list. Plan your trip accordingly.

Recommend you to read following travel blog on Places to visit in Gujarat.

  1. Understanding the Architecture of Sun Temple, Modhera.
  2. Carved Gates of Dabhoi.
  3. Ahmedabad Heritage Walk.
  4. Historic Pavagadh Hill, Gujarat.
  5. Legacy of Queen – Rani Ki Vav.

16 COMMENTS

  1. Sad that they don’t allow photography in these lovely museums. Thanks for sharing the interesting information about the museums here.

  2. I wasn’t interested in museums initially on a travel. But seems like I am gaining some interest in this area. The vintage musuem for sure 🙂 But ‘No Photographs’ will be the biggest disappointment for me. They should allow it. Nothing can anyway replace the real visit.

  3. Hi Anuradha, I have been to Calico Museum but had no idea there are so many interesting museums in Ahmedabad. Thanks for sharing. Your travels are so interesting. Do you travel alone or take groups?

  4. Congratulations! Your blog post
    was featured in our Collective 10 Amazing Indian Destinations For Summer 2016
    Feb 25, 2016 at Blogadda.

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