Champaner-Pavagadh, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Gujarat, is an interesting and unusual case study in how religion, culture, terrain, and climate interact in creating water systems that sustained large communities for 800 years between the eighth and sixteenth centuries. Water is central to Hindu worship rituals and at Pavagadh Hill, embodiment of the goddess Kalika, is symbolic of her nurturing aspects. The ornate water architecture of Champaner city at the foothill, inhabited by Muslims, celebrated water not for its symbolic value but for its sensual and utilitarian aspects. In ‘water-intelligent’ settlement planning at Champaner-Pavagadh, historic water catchment and conveyance systems ensured availability of water throughout the year. The article concludes with outlining the landscape approach to sustainable heritage landscape conservation within which water systems are restored and made functional, to serve the needs of local residents and pilgrims, and to enhance the legibility of this complex and layered site.
- cultural landscape
- sustainable heritage conservation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Environmental Science(all)
- Nature and Landscape Conservation
- Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law