About the Statue of Unity
The sky touching monument at a skyscraping height with stunning beauty around is an amalgamation of nature and concrete. The Statue of Unity is one of the marvellous tourist destinations not only in India but also in the world. The Statue of Unity has put India on the world map.
The Statue of Unity which is crowned the world’s tallest statue is the sculpture of the Iron Man of India, Sardar Valbbhbhbhai Patel. The statue situated on the island of Sadhu Bet near Narmada City was inaugurated on October 31, 2018, which was also the 143rd birth anniversary of Sardar Patel. The sculptor behind the gigantic statue is Ram V Sutar, an Indian Sculptor.
This mammoth statue is definitely going to leave you awestruck. You can also enjoy the scenic view from the viewing gallery built at the chest part of the statue which is 153 meters. The statue from all sides looks realistic and surreal at the same time.
Interestingly, with an average of daily 15,000 footfall, the Statue of Unity had surpassed the visitor ratio that of the Statue of Liberty in the US in December 2019. That too in just a year!
You’ll be left enchanted by the beauty of the humungous statue.
When you are in queue to go up to the viewing gallery, you can spend your time by viewing the gallery which has a lot of historic pictures and history about Gujarat which rightfully displays the contribution of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
The viewing gallery offers astounding views of the Sardar Sarovar Dam, Narmada river and in the backdrop are Satpura and Vindhyachal hills.
You’ll be overwhelmed with the nearby attractions around the Statue of Unity.
Distance between Ahmedabad and Statue of Unity
The distance between Ahmedabad and the Statue of Unity via NE1 is 198.2 km which would roughly take 3 hours and 40 minutes to reach SoU.
If you take the longer route, which is NH47, it will take 5 hours and 22 minutes to reach SoU with a distance of 265.9 km from Ahmedabad.
How to reach the Statue of Unity from Ahmedabad
You can travel by air from Ahmedabad to Vadodara airport since it is the nearest airport (95 km) to the Statue of Unity. After reaching Vadodara, the best mode of transport would be public transport or a cab.
Vadodara railway station is the nearest railway station to the Statue of Unity and you can choose trains like Shatabdi and Rajdhani.
If you’re travelling by bus, you can drop down at Vadodara bus station and can hire a taxi to reach the destination.
Places to visit near the Statue of Unity
Sardar Sarovar Dam
This humungous dam provides water source to four states – Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Rajasthan. There is a Sardar Sarovar Dam View Point from where you can witness the enthralling view of the third highest concrete dam in India. The dam was inaugurated by PM Narendra Modi in September 2017. You can also enjoy the aerial view of the dam from the viewing gallery of the statue.
Laser, Light and Sound Show
By the end of the show, you’re sure to get goosebumps. The show is a delight to watch as it narrates the history of Iron Man and other exemplary leaders of India who are showcased through the epic laser show. The national anthem is also played in the show. Make sure you’ve taken time out for this show as it is not worth missing. The Projection Mapping Show starts at sharp at 7 pm.
Valley of Flowers
Also known as Bharat Van, the Valley of Flowers is spread across 24 acres of land is a haven of colourful flowers in the 17 km patch alongside the banks of River Narmada. Although it began with 48,000 plants way back in 2016, now it has reached a staggering 22,00,0000 plants. A variety of flowers, shrubs and climbers include Gramado, champo, Gulmohar, Khakhro, Galtora, Pongaro, Tecoma, Marigold, Sunflower and so on that make the valley look ethereal. Selfie lovers won’t be disappointed as several photo booths and selfie points have been set up.
Another heavenly place at the Kevadia colony is the Butterfly Garden. The garden houses more than 70 different species of butterflies spread in 10 acres of land with 150 varieties of nectar plants and larval host plants that best suit the butterflies.
The Cactus Garden
You’ll not find a cactus garden anywhere else in Gujarat but here at Kevadia. A large variety of Cacti and succulents are displayed on 25 acres of land with 6 lakh plants of 450 species of national and international cacti. These cacti have arrived from North and South America and African Continents. It is a great learning opportunity for the students as well.
Things to do at the Statue of Unity
You need not go to Rishikesh or Manali, you’ve here in Gujarat too! It is the first River Rafting activity in the entire Gujarat. The river rafting takes place at Khalwani near the Kevadia colony which is quite close to the Statue of Unity. You can enjoy river rafting in a 4.5 km stretch where there is a regular release of 600 cusec flow of water from the Sardar Sarovar Dam.
Take the helicopter ride to view the sky touching monument and you’ll be spellbound by the view surrounding the Statue of Unity. Avail a 10-minute helicopter ride that takes you around the Statue of Unity along with 5-7 people at one time. The helicopter ride timings are from 9:30 am to one hour before sunset. The ticket price is Rs 2,900 per person.
Ekta Cruise Boat Ride
Ekta Cruise is a ferry ride from Shrestha Bharat Bhavan to the Statue of Unity. It is a 40-minute ride that can ferry 200 passengers at one go. It also offers onboard dinner while the cruise is sailing.
Three kinds of the Entry ticket for the Statue of Unity: SoU Express Entry, SoU Entry Ticket and SoU Viewing Gallery.
Due to COVID-19, ticket booking needs to be done online only. You can either book your ticket online from the official website or can directly purchase tickets from the spot.
Timings of Statue of Unity: 8 am to 6 pm
Closed on Mondays.
Interesting Facts about the Statue of Unity
- The Statue of Unity is 4 times taller than the Statue of Liberty, New York.
- It cost around $430 m (29.9 bn rupees) to build the Statue of Unity.
- The construction of the statue took a staggering 2,500,000 cubic feet of concrete, a steel structure worth 5700 tons and 18,500 tons of reinforced steel rods.
- Over 12,000 bronze panels cover the entire structure.
- The mammoth structure of 182 meters was chosen to match the number of seats in the Gujarat Legislative Assembly.
While you’re all exhausted exploring the Statue of Unity and its surroundings, you can take a break and fill your stomach with more energy at the following food joints:
Ekta Food Court: With a seating capacity of 650 people, the Ekta food court offers both international and Indian cuisines.
SoU Food Court: This food court is still under construction but once it is completed, this too will be able to accommodate650 people. Offering multinational and Indian cuisines, it will have seven kitchens.
Amul Cafe: You’ll find the Amul Parlour in the Shrestha Bharat Bhavan Campus near the Bus Shuttle Parking of the SoU.