Recently, we did a tour of Statue of Unity located in Kevadia, Gujarat. We took an overnight train from Mumbai to Kevadia which passes through Surat, Vadodara. Eight trains from various parts of the country have started to Kevadia, a newly built railway station. Statue of Unity can also be reached by road. It is approx. 100 kms from Vadodara / Bharuch, which are the nearest towns.
We had booked the tickets online for various attractions in and around the statue. Tickets can be booked here. We selected a few of the attractions which were to our interest like boating at the Narmada reservoir, Jungle Safari, Cactus & Butterfly Garden, Unity Glow Garden etc. It is advisable to book the tickets in advance for entry to the Statue as weekends can get quite crowded. Due to Covid-19, only online ticket booking option is available and no booking at the counter is possible.
An ideal destination for a one-day picnic with family or friends. It is also possible to stay at the Tent City near Kevadia if you wish to make it a 2 days trip. There are a couple of hotels as well for stay options (Sardar Sarovar Portico / Ramada by Wyndham).
Our first attraction was boating at the Narmada river reservoir. It was a 45 minutes long boat ride which accommodates around 100 people per trip. We enjoyed beautiful views of the reservoir & also spotted a few birds. There is a sea plane service from Sabarmati riverfront at Ahmedabad to Kevadia. We were lucky to witness the landing of a sea plane at the reservoir.
We had a quick bite at the cafeteria (Starbucks / Coffee Day / Subway) before proceeding to the main attraction Statue of Unity. The Statue of Unity is a colossal statue of Indian statesman & independence activist Vallabhbhai Patel, who was the first Deputy Prime Minister and Home minister of independent India and adherent of Mahatma Gandhi.
We proceeded to the base of the statue where a beautifully built exhibition hall, a bust of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel & audio-visual room is located. We took a high speed elevator to reach viewing gallery which is located a chest level. The statue was designed by Shri. Ram V Sutar. The core of the statue used 210,000 cubic metres of cement and concrete, 6,500 tonnes of structural steel, and 18,500 tonnes of reinforced steel. The outer façade is made up of 1,700 tonnes of bronze plates and 1,850 tonnes of bronze cladding. The Statue of Unity is the world’s tallest statue at 182 metres (597 ft). The monument is constructed on a river island named Sadhu Bet, 3.2 km away from and facing the Narmada dam downstream.
Our next stop was at Jungle Safari, which is a mini zoo with a short 10 minute safari ride. There are deer, antelopes, tiger, leopard, few animals & birds from different parts of the world. There was also a bird dome but it was closed for maintenance. We missed out Cactus & Butterfly garden due to paucity of time.
We settled at the seating area near the helipad for the evening Laser Projection Mapping show at the Statue. It was a 15 minutes long informative show about the life & struggles of Shri. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. We took the free shuttle bus to reach the railway station to catch our return train to Mumbai. It was a memorable trip for us and were totally awed by the size of the Statue. The surrounding area around the statue is very well developed and maintained.
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