Sharmishtha Lake is an exquisite tourist spot in Vadnagar which presents the water retaining system of the Solanki period. This ancient lake was constructed with the water from the river Kapila which flows from the hills of Aravalli. Ages ago some early settlements emerged on the north eastern shore of the river and they created the lake for retaining water. The formation of the lake led to the substantial increase in the size of the settlement.
Chamatkarpur or the Magical Place
About 4000 years ago, Vadnagar was known as Chamatkarpur. The name was rendered to the place for a specific incident in which a king was cured of leprosy after taking bath in the magical waters of Shakti Tirth. As a repayment to the city he revamped it on the shore of the lake by adding temples and palaces. He also named the city as Chamatkarpur. Chamatkarpur served as a prime source of attraction for many scholars as it was the abode of Rishi Yagyavalkya, knower of Vedas.
Toranas, also known as victory arches, are the magnificent historical monuments of Vadnagar. These arches are located on the western shore of Sharmishtha lake and are believed to have been built by Solanki rulers in the tenth century. These Toranas are structured with red stone and they are more than four-stories tall.
Saptarshi, situated on the bank of a pond in the eastern part of Sharmishtha Lake, is another tourist spot. This pond receives water from the same Kapila River as Lake Sharmishtha. In ancient times, the place hosted some magnificent buildings and temples. There were stone steps all around the pond. It is also believed to be the place where Yagyavalkya's ashram existed. Katyayan, his son, was also a great sage. He is known to have established two beautiful shrines called Vastupad and Mahaganapati in Vadnagar.
Amarthol Gate area forms the oldest existing part of Vadnagar. The place has a group of six temples belonging to 10th century AD which stand on spacious platforms. The main shrine which faces the west has been renovated and painted and houses the icon of Goddess Ambaji, called Amther Mata. Smaller shrines stand behind the main one, dedicated to various deities.
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