The 11th-century Rani-ki-Vav (the Queen’s Stepwell) — in Patan district of Gujarat — made it to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list on June 22 this year. And pray, why not? This architectural wonder designed as an inverted temple, with its intricately carved panels, looks like a subterranean edifice honouring the elixir of life rather than a construct simply to store water.
Doubtlessly, the baolis of North India, the bawdis of Rajasthan and the vavs of Gujarat are our country’s unique and stupendous contribution to the world of art and architecture. While Rajasthan has earned the sobriquet ‘city of stepwells’, Gujarat, which boasts hundreds of them, walks away with Rani-ki-Vav as its place of pride.
Oh! The marvel
It’s with a lot of skepticism that we decide to visit yet another stepwell during our trip to Gujarat.