History of Kankaria Lake
The Kankaria Lake was established in 1451 by Sultan Qutb-ud-Din. More specifically, the construction of this lake commenced in the 15th century and was completed in 1451 AD. In this period, the utilization of this lake was mainly restricted to bathing and swimming by all the kings and badshahs.
Geography of Kankaria Lake
Geographically, the Kankaria Lake has an approximate circumference of 3 miles or 4.8 km along with a circuit of about 1.25 km and steps leading down to the water level. An island called Nagina Wadi is located in the centre of the lake. There opens a walkway at some point of the lake which later merges into this island cum garden. It was constructed with a small summer palace and a musical fountain. Food stalls are also available on this artificial island. The eastern side of this lake is provided with an elaborately carved water inlet with three circular openings. This water inlet is similar to other several reservoirs in Gujarat and is also defined as a monument. This lake was also provided with a water purification system, which is known to be lost with time.
Tourism of Kankaria Lake
Kankaria Lake is a tourism product of Ahmedabad which is enriched with the scenic beauty of the surrounding areas. More specifically, this lake is surrounded by toy trains, kankaria zoo, balvatika, kids city, joyrides, amusement park, dutch and armenian tombs, balloon safari, stone mural park and roller coaster.
Kankaria Lake tourism was further enhanced by importing a train from London, which was named Atal Express. This train was named after former prime minister of India, Atal Bihari Vajpayee. The train is manufactured by Severn Lamb. It has a 2.3 km circular track and moves round the lake at a speed of about 10 km/h. This train has a capacity to carry 150 passengers, including 36 adults. Swarnim Jayanti Express was another train which was introduced after the success of the former one.
In 1951, Rueben David established the Kankaria Zoo or Kamla Nehru Zoological Park over an area of about 31-acre of land. This zoo houses around 450 mammals, 2,000 birds and 140 reptiles. In 1974, this zoo was rated the best in Asia and the same year Reuben David was awarded Padma Shri for this achievement.
Balvatika is a children centric park named after Jawaharlal Nehru. Balvatika has provisions for a boat house, playroom, butterfly and weapon displays, mirror house, toy house and planetarium to amuse the visiting children.
Kankaria Lake also has a Kids City in it’s vicinity. Covering about 4240 square metres, the Kids City is a miniature world specific to kids.
To help visitors stroll easily around the Kankaria Lake, segways are introduced. This lake also witnessed the introduction of a mini golf course, aqua kart, vertical swing, paint ball shooting, black flash and rides, sky fly and other joyrides.
In 2014, a Netherlands based company installed five rides in the amusement park. It includes the Boomerang Roller Coaster, the Flipping Arm, the Torching Tower, Disk 'O' pendulum and the merry-go-round. A kids play zone is also planned to be included for computer games.
Dutch and Armenian Tombs
Tourists can also visit Dutch and Armenian tombs near Kankaria Lake. These tombs are located on One Tree Hill embankment. They are indicative of a strong trade presence of Dutch East India Company in the city during 17th century. Architecturally, these tombs are saracenic in style and also have domes and pillars.
There are also options for tethered balloon ride at the Ahmedabad Eye complex which is located in the vicinity of Kankaria Lake. It is divided into four sections including a restaurant, tethered balloon, heritage exhibit and an exhibition displaying the making of the Ahmedabad Eye. It occupies an area of over 3000 square yard. A balloon themed restaurant managed by Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation and a rainforest themed restaurant are also located in the vicinity of this lake.
Stone Mural Park
The side walls of Kankaria Lake are to be adorned by a Stone Mural Park in Gujarat named Gurjar Gaurav Gatha. The establishment of this park is under construction. This park is planned to have world's largest mural measuring about 30000 square metres. Presently, the murals are known to cover 3150 square feet and highlight the history of Ahmedabad. Some of the other subjects that are being included in it are great rulers of Gujarat, freedom fight, ports, education, commerce and good practices (ethical business-trade traditions), expression of culture along with Gujrat’s cultural heritage, art and literature, today’s Gujarat and global Gujaratis.
The boomerang roller coaster is being installed at Kankaria Lake. This roller coaster has a track length of 185 meters and is expected to provide rides at a speed of about 105.6 km/hr. It is the first of its kind in Ahmedabad.
Other attractions include historical desert safari, football ground, open-air theatre, jaldhara water park, Dadu Dayal temple, Natural History Museum, aquarium, gardens like One Tree Hill garden, Butterfly Park, water sports and rides, boating and small amusement park. It is considered to be a good place for yoga, walking, and running, especially early morning. There is also a gym on campus known as Ambubhai Purani Vyayamshala.
Festival of Kankaria Lake
Kankaria Carnival is a week-long festival held at Kankaria Lake in the last week of December. This carnival is composed of many cultural arts and social activities to attract visitors and ensure their involvement.
Revamp of Kankaria Lake
In 2008, Kankaria Lake was further beautified by restoring a part of it. More specifically, the central garden and the walkway had been revamped and it’s utilities were enhanced. After the restoration of the lake came to an end, it was officially inaugurated in a week long event famously known as Kankaria Carnival. On December 25, 2008, the inauguration ceremony for renovated Kankaria lakefront was held.
Kankaria Lake has transport availability. It is important to note that Gujarat has one of the better developed road networks in India. Ahmedabad is well connected with all major cities and towns by road. Prominent bus stops are located at Gitamandir near Kalupur Railway Station and Paldi.
Lakes of India
Caves of Gujarat