Morbi was the capital of the former princely state of Morbi,
ruled by the Jadeja Rajput clan. The house of Morbi claimed seniority over
the Jadejas of Jamnagar and Kachchh.
The beautiful town of Morbi is located on the banks of the Machchhu River.
Floods devastated Morbi in 1979 AD, when Machchhu dam burst during heavy
rains. The folk song, which predicted this tragedy, years before it
happened, is still sung by the bards of the region.
The prosperous city state of Morbi and much of built heritage and town planning is attributed to the efficient administration of Sir Waghji, who came to the throne in 1879 AD and ruled till 1948 AD. Sir Waghji acted as a ruler, manager, patron and policeman of the state with great authority, always keeping the citizens' interests in mind.
Sir Waghji, like other contemporary rulers of Saurashtra, built roads, railway network of seventy miles connecting Wadhvan and Morbi and two small ports of Navlakhi and Vavlakhi and Vavania for exporting the state's production of salt and cloth. The railway station of Morbi is a beautiful example of Railway architecture, combining Indian and European architectural elements.
The most important buildings at Morbi are Darbargadh, Mani Mandir, Wellingdon Secretariat, Suspension Bridge, Art Deco Palace and Lakhdhirji Engineering College.
Darbargadh: Darbargadh, on the bank of Machchhu, is
an original residence of Morbi rulers. It can be reached by crossing an
imposing gate and arcaded façade. Now it is the only heritage hotel
Mani Mandir: Mani Mandir is a temple situated in the courtyard of Wellingdon Secretariat. The images of Laxmi Narayan, Mahakali, Ramchandraji, Radha-Krishna and Shiva are enshrined in this temple. Mani Mandir is made out of Jaipur stone with excellent workmanship and exquisitely carved elements- arches, brackets, 'jalis', 'chhatris' and 'shikhara'.
Wellingdon Secretariat: It is an excellent example of the application of principles of Rajput architecture by master craftsmen, at the turn of the century.
Suspension Bridge: The Suspension Bridge, an engineering marvel built at the turn of the century, reflects the progressive and scientific nature of the rulers of Morbi. This was built to give a unique identity to Morbi using the latest technology available in those days, in Europe. It is 1.25 m wide and spans 233 m on the Machchhu River connecting Darbargadh Palace and Lakhdhirji Engineering College.
Green Chowk: Green Chowk is a town square approached by a series of three gates. European town planning principles inspired the creation of these gates as landmarks in the town.
The Nehru Gate is made out of stone using elements of Rajput architecture with central clock tower, while another one uses elements of western architecture and is capped by a three-storeyed cast iron frame structure with a dome.
Art Deco Palace: It is a marvellous example of influence of last phase of art deco movement of Europe. It is a poetry in granite, a low two-storey in banded horizontal fenestration, curves and bays, which resembles the London underground stations of Charles Holden. The palace has six drawing rooms, six dining rooms, and fourteen bedrooms. The decorated subterranean bedroom, with many erotic murals and a bathroom made from seashells are also noteworthy.
Lakhdhirji Engineering College: Lakhdhirji Engineering College is housed in Nazarbag Palace, a former residence of Morbi rulers.
The other places worth visiting at Morbi are V. C. High School, main railway station and Nazarbag railway station.
75 kms away, Dhrangdhra is known for its royal palaces.
Wadhvan: The main attraction of this place are the royal palaces, the bazaar and the step wells. It is at a distance of 107 kms.
Halvad: (48 kms) Halvad is famous for its Ek-Dandia Mahal-Zalawad Darshan, wooden palace and the cenotaphs
Rajkot: (67 kms) famous for its princely architecture, there aer many places worth seeing in Rajkot. Some of them are Watson Museum, Rajkumar College, Ramkrishna Mission and Kaba Gandhi no Delo.
Air: Nearest airport is Rajkot (67 kms), Ahmedabad
Rail: Nearest railway station is Wankaner (27 km)
Road: it is connected with Rajkot and Ahmedabad.
Local transport: non-metered auto rickshaws.
Accommodation is available in various local guesthouses and the Heritage Hotel at Darbargadh.
Rajkot: 67 kms.