Easy to carry in the pocket, the map is a useful guide for every traveller, culture enthusiast and proud local of Amdavad.
Most people want to make a difference to society in some way or the other. They might refuse to throw plastic wrappers on the road or they might help a visually challenged person cross the streets near the Blind People’s Association. For litigation lawyer Bandish Soparkar and his friends at Khoj Maps, a creative approach came to mind. To help people explore the nooks and crannies of Amdavad, they have brought out an inventive map that highlights fascinating facets of the city! A closet writer, Soparkar, along with numerous friends of his, took more than five years to come up with this creative cultural map that exhaustively touches upon almost every aspect of East and West Ahmedabad.
The ‘Discover Ahmedabad’ Map is visually appealing, practical and exhaustively informational. At Rs 70, the map is humbly priced in comparison to the efforts put into researching, illustrating and curating content for it. Historically informative, it recounts epoch-old stories of the city’s establishment, even before the fabled incident of 1411 in which Ahmed Shah is said to have watched a hare chasing a dog near the banks of the Sabarmati. This anecdote is fondly illustrated as the cover image of the map.
It is remarkable to witness the effort put into guiding the reader to have an authentic first-hand experience of the city. From shopping to hogging, the map has abundant mentions of snack joints and full-meal restaurants, along with descriptions of the authentic culinary culture of the city. There is mention of curious locations like the Jail Bhajiya (bhajiya: deep-fried vegetable fritters) made by the prisoners of Sabarmati Central Jail, and Ambica Dalwada which has been serving deep-fried lentil balls since eons.
Many of the locations highlighted in the map are usually left untouched by many cartographers, such as Mandvi Ni Pol, which is the central brass and copper utensils market that also happens to be the longest pol in Ahmedabad. Its mention came to me as a pleasant surprise. Modern architectural identities, as well as ancient Jain, Mughal and colonial heritage edifices of Ahmedabad are mentioned with detailed insight, blended with witty language.
Meticulous compositions of visuals are astoundingly original – Gandhiji is seen to be jovially playing with pigeons and peacocks; while in another corner of the map, an auto-rickshaw driver indicates a right-turn with his hanging foot.
Even if you are a first-timer to the city, the map guides you about its local transport, lingo, and even its religious unity in diversity. The ‘Discover Ahmedabad’ Map is a must-buy for every explorer, cartographer, culture enthusiast and proud Amdavadi.
The map can be bought for Rs 70 from destinations like Crossword, Project Otenga, SandwichworkZ, Cafe Tilla, Conflictorium, Alliance Française, NIDUS, IIM-A Store and the Gift Shop of House of M.G.
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