Ahmedabad (also called Amdavad, Ahmadabad or Ahemdavad), Gujarat's major city, will bowl you over – in good ways and bad. Yes, with traffic, noise, and air so thick you can chew it, the place can be a little overwhelming, but the city quickly wins you over with its incredible architecture, ranging from centuries-old mosques and mausoleums to cutting-edge contemporary design. Then there's the old quarter, where the narrow streets hide excitement around every twisting corner. Throw in some excellent museums, fine restaurants and a bustling street-food scene and you end up with a city that rightly deserves its place as India's first Unesco Urban World Heritage Site.
The old city, on the east side of the Sabarmati River, was once surrounded by a 10km-long wall, of which little remains except 15 gates. The new city, on the west side of the river, has several major universities and many middle-class neighbourhoods.