Places to Visit in Kheda
Earlier, Kheda was known as “Hidimba Van” because it’s believed that Bhima of Mahabharata had killed a demon to marry Hidimba at this place. Kheda was initially ruled by the Babi Dynasty but later taken over by the Marathas and successively by the British. Kheda is historically significant as Gandhiji started his Satyagraha from here. Kheda was famine-stricken, and the British were not exempting the taxes of the villagers. In such a situation Gandhiji initiated the first Satyagraha, which ultimately made the British bow down to the pressure of the villagers, and taxes for two consecutive years were suspended, and interest amount decreased. Kheda is also famous for 150 years old traditional murals of Gujarat that can be found on some temple walls and residential houses. The subjects of these paintings are both secular and religious with figures of human beings and animals included in them.
This lake is in the village of Vadtal and is a tourist attraction in Kheda. Legends have it that during his journey with Krishna, Bhimsen dug open a small pool of water into a huge lake, for the welfare of the forest animals and dwellers in the area. This lake is situated opposite the Dakor temple and gets its name from River Gomti at Dwarka. Spread over an area of 230 hectares, present on the banks of the Gomti Lake is a variety of lodging facilities for pilgrims. The lake has four great mounds called Makhani Aro, Kaleshwar Mahadev, Bhatt Ji Maharaj and Danknath Mahadev.
The Kheda Hanuman Temple
The Kheda Hanuman Temple lies atop Hanuman Tekro or the Hanuman Hill. King Mayurdhwaj of Kheda constructed the temple.
Situated on the banks of Gomati Lake, Ranchhodrai Temple is in Dakor, Kheda district. In the midst of a fort wall, the temple is made of eight domes of which the central dome is 27m high. The Ranchhodrai Temple also happens to be the tallest one in the district, adorned with a golden Kalash and a white silk flag. The hall of the temple has put on display, a variety of paintings portraying different incidents of Lord Krishna’s life. The idol in the sanctum is extremely attractive, made of black touchstone and lavishly adorned with gold and silver ornaments and vibrant clothes. The Gaekwad of Baroda gifted the lord’s richly etched wooden thorn. Gopal Jagannath Ambedkar constructed Ranchhodrai Temple in the year 1772 AD.
Shree Mahalakshmi Temple
This temple in Kheda is worth a visit. More than a century old, the Mahalakshmi Temple lies close to the Vatrak River in Kheda. Present in the sanctum sanctorum is a beautiful sculpture of Lord Mahalakshmi, etched out of pure white marble.
A pleasant ashram in Bilorda near Dakor, the Hari Om Ashram is always brimming with serenity. Surrounded by tall, beautiful trees, set up at this ashram are ‘Moun Mandirs’ (silent temples) which are small rooms that people in quest of peace voluntarily occupy and rest in silence. One can do so by paying a donation of Rs 5 following which the ashram provides food and laundry facilities to those in the rooms through a window. The famous Gujarati Saint Pujya Shree Mota established Hari Om Ashram and lay at a km distance from the state transport bus stop.
Temples of Dakor
Dakor has so many temples within it that it can be rather called a town of temples. Some of the impressive shrines that one can visit while in Dakor include: Galteshwar Temple which is dedicated to Lord Shiva, The Santaram Mandir, a huge and beautiful shrine dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi. The Satyanarayan temple well recognized for the uniqueness of its peak. The Punitashram is known for its social services to its pilgrims, the newly constructed Gayatri Temple, and The Mahaprabhuji ni Bethak – one of the 84 established seats of Mahaprubhu in the country that is frequented by Vaishnavas.