is an ancient fort located at the foothills of Pavagadh, The town
derives its name from the Champa tree. It also gets this name from
its founder Champaraj, a contemporary of King Vanraj Chavda of Anhilwada.
It is located in Panchamahal District, 47 kilometres from the city
of Vadodara. The city was briefly the capital of Gujarat. It is
located at 22°48'33" N and 73°55' E.
The famous Muslim king of Gujarat, Muhammad Begada captured
the fort in late 15th century after a long siege against the Khichi
Muhammad Begada decided to establish the new capital of Gujarat
at this place in 1484 AD and changed the name of the town to Muhammadabad.
It took 23 years to build the town. It had a meteoric rise, and
attained glory as a great town of western India. Many edifices were
constructed during these years: bazaars, town squares, royal gardens
and water structures, including mosques. It also became a major
trading center producing fine silk, woven and dyed textile and sword
Its decline started after attacks by the Mughal emperor Humayun
in 1535 AD. After the death of Sultan Bahadurshah (1536 AD), the
royal capital was again moved back to Ahmedabad. Later, the fort
came under control of Mughals, Marathas and British; but Champaner
could never regain its glory. In 1803 AD, when the British took
the town, it was overgrown with jungles and had only 500 inhabitants.
is today the site of the Champaner-Pavagadh Archeological Park and
has become the first site in Gujarat and the 26th in the country
to get the status of 'World Heritage Site' on July 1, 2004.
The entire landscape for miles around is scattered with remains
of fort walls, ruined tombs, gardens, arches, pillars and wells.
Champaner reminds the visitor of other such great deserted towns
of India - Mandu, Hampi, Orchha and Fatehpur Sikri. At Champaner,
one can see three fortifications - the base (Champaner), the top
(Pavagadh) and the area connecting both of them (Machi).
General Information & Accomdation info on Champaner city of
Gujarat - India