Stepwells of Gujarat – Adalaj Vav

It’s amazing what people here have to go through to get water. Back home, with one flick of the wrist, we turn on the faucet to water our lawn. For many Indians living in the arid desert regions of Rajasthan and Gujarat, this is unimaginable. Many have to walk for miles to simple wells to get their daily water supply.

I’m even more amazed by the amount of work people have put into building elaborate stepwells like Adalaj Vav outside of Ahmedabad. Over 500 years old and 5 stories deep, this once active well is now being used for recreation and social gatherings.

In its appearance, the well is much more temple-like owing to the fact that access to water has always been associated with appeasing the gods. As you enter the underground structure, the ornamented corridor leading down to the well is covered with carved sculptures.

In order to get any water, people used to walk 30 meters down and, even worse, 30 meters up with their full vessels. Think about that next time you walk into your kitchen to get a glass of water.

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