One of the state’s oldest cities, surat has been india’s ancient trading Centre. Since long traders from across the seven seas had links with this City, know for silks, textiles, spices and exquisite diamond cutting and Polishing, surat was described as ” a storehouse of the most precious Production of hindustan ” by portuguese traveller barbosa in 1514. The city Industrialisation began nearly a century later when the britishers set up The first factory in 1612. Surat has been one of the most prosperous of India’s cities in the 17th & 18th century. In mughal times, surat was the Main port from which pilgrims sailed to mecca. Textiles for ceremonial and Utlitly purposes, wood lacquer and ivory handicrafts, embroidery and Jewellery had great demand in the world market then, fine silver and gold Jewellery crafted in surat is still a rage here, but today it is more known For diamond cutting and polishing industry besides the jari and silk Produced there. Modern surat is located on the banks of river tapti.

Places of interest

-Castle
Located on the banks of River Tapti, the castle was built in 1546 a.d to protect the city form the invaders at the instance of Sultan Mahmud III and Khwaja Safar Salmani, an albanian christian who had embraced Islam and was later awarded the title of Khudawan Khan. After few years, it was refortified with Turkish Guns that added to the splendor of the castle. The moat that existed around the fort was filled around 1959. Today, it houses several government offices and offers some breathtaking views of the River Tapti.

-The Mosques
Surat offers four interesting mosques that including, Khudawand Mosque, Sayyid Idris Mosque and the Jumma Masjid that is located across the River Tapti. Khwaja Diwan Sahib's mosque is reputed as the most interesting mosque with its fine architectural style.

-Chintamani Jain Temple
The exquisite wooden carvings and paintings are the major attractions of the temple. The temple dates back to 15 century and houses some of the most rare paintings of Jain preacher Acharya Hemchandra, Solanki King and King Kumarapala.

-Cemeteries
English, Dutch and Americans cemeteries at Surat make an interesting stop-over. Of these the Mausoleum of Oxenden brothers is noteworthy for its domed structure and four pinnacles at the corner. The mausoleum is located near Katargam Gate. The Dutch and American cemeteries are situated at Gulam Falia near the main road leading to Katargam.


Shopping

Surat is reputed for its exquisite handcrafted items and that makes it an ideal place to shop for some finest souvenirs. You can also choose from a range of durable and intricately carved furniture that carry a magnetic appeal. Laxmi Textile Market in Surat offers some of the most admired textiles in the world.


How to reach
Baroda located around 140 kms from Surat is the nearest airport. Surat is an important railway station and is connected to all the major Indian destinations. There are regular state transport and private buses from Surat to the important centers of the region and Gujarat. Tourist taxis, auto-rickshaws, and city bus service are available from the main bus stand.

Climate
The climate of Surat is mild and it doesn't fluctuate much. The temperature ranges between 10°C to 38°C. Although one can visit Surat in any season, the best time to do so would be between October and March.