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Rani ki Vav

Rani ki Vav, Patan
Rani ki Vav, Patan

The Rani ki Vav, a step well in Patan is an excellent example of subterranean architecture in Gujarat and has steps that lead down to the water level This Vav is situated about 134 km north-west of Ahmedabad, and about 57 km from Mehsana. The Rani ki Vav was built by Rani Udayamti of the Solanki dynasty, probably as a memorial for her husband Bhimdeva I (1022 - 1063 AD). This Vav represents the finest of the Indian sculptures and architecture and forms the link between a kunda and the classical step-well. In addition to the straight staircase, it also has lateral staircases, along with very broad, stepped corridors.

The entrance of this Vav is situated in the east and the well in the west. The exquisitely carved side walls, pillars, steps and platforms lead to the elaborately carved water well. Although, this Vav is in a bad condition, but still the entrance, the side walls of the stepped corridor, some of the mandapas and the back wall of the well are still in a perfect condition. Five lateral, staggered staircases attached to the side walls connect various storeys. Every surface of the well and levels are adorned with fine sculptures of Hindu deities, religious motifs and geometrical patterns.

Rani Ki Vav, Rani Ki Vav Information

The lower most level has 37 niches with rudimentary images of Ganesha in the centre and images of the Sheshashayi Vishnu on the upper level. On the upper levels, the impressive images of Laxmi-Narayana, Uma-Mahesh, Brahma-Brahmani, Kubera and Ganesha, with their respective consorts are also sculpted. On the lower levels, there are images of Vishnu’s incarnations and 24 forms but the Kufma and the Matsya avatars do not find a place in this Vav. No other Vav in India is so profusely adorned as the Rani ki Vav.

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