When we speak of visiting history, we plan a visit to a museum but there are certain noteworthy museums across India that are known not only for their historical significance but offer its visitors timeless memories and a peep into our rich art & craft too. So let’s embark on a journey to some of the amazing museums in our country.
Vechaar- Vishalla Environmental Centre for Heritage of Art Architechture and Research is a beautiful place for all lovers of Indian Heritage. It is an utensils museum, started in 1981 by Mr. Surendra Patel in Ahmedabad.
Vechaar was set up with the sole intention of knowing more about our traditional utensils and preserving the craft of an era gone by. It has a village like set up. Vishalla houses more than 3000 of such unique & rare utensils, some of which are about 1000 years old.
Mr Surendra Patel has himself painstakingly collected some of these utensils from various place across India. He has a keen sense of observation and has done well in curating these ancient traditional utensils from far off places. He is an Interior designer and the restaurateur at Vishalla
The architecture of the hut-like museum building is quadrangular in shape. It is mud plastered all over, like a hut. There are four small water bodies in the center of the museum, which gives a cooling effect to the whole atmosphere. At the center of these water bodies is a small temple of Lord Shiva . There are no doors inside the campus which makes you feel one with nature
Some of the interesting utensils on display are the ones in copper, brass, terracotta, clay and bronze, which include pots that store water, utensils for cooking and serving, vessel for churning buttermilk, spoons, rolling pins, storage jars, cookers, steamers, casseroles, woks and frying pans, jugs, kettles, bottles and boxes, plates, glasses and bowls, spice-boxes, tiffin-boxes, nutcrackers, infants’ feeding cups, knives and tantric havan kunds. Each item is a priceless piece of history revisited. Some of them have intricate carving and ornamentation.
The utensils in the museum are not guarded and directly for the public to enjoy the touch and feel of an era gone by.
Apart from the museum, Vishalla the restaurant is also a unique concept in itself. It has a village like charm and Mr.Patel has taken utmost care in preserving the traditional values and hospitality generally associated with an Indian village. There are no modern amenities offered in the restaurant. The restaurant aims at giving one a relaxed and peaceful experience and in this process, you have to select the menu and pay the bill at the entrance itself so that you are not worried about the bill that you will incur at the end of your meal.
The restaurant staff is dressed in Indian attire clad in a dhoti kurta and a turban or topi over the head!
The museum as well as the restaurant is open all days except Monday from 3pm to 10 pm. At night too lanterns are used instead of artificial mode of lighting. Seating is on the ground with wooden plank that serves as a table of sorts. One has to sit cross legged in an Indian fashion which aids digestion and helps you from over eating as the food is unlimited. Special care is taken to have the meal prepared in the most nutritious manner including a lot of greens .Folk songs by folk singers engage you well while having your meal. It is a true village experience with food being served on tree leaves. Head over to VISHAALA on your next trip to Ahmedabad and get enriched in a true Indian experience.They have a beautiful website: www.vechaar.com
Yearning for more?? I knew it. Do make a trip to this wonderful place and let me know how you liked it!!