Navsari is a city and municipality in the Surat Metropolitan Region and also the administrative headquarters Navsari District of Gujarat, India. Navsari is also the Twin City of Surat, and only 37 km south of Surat.
Navsari, one of the oldest cities of Gujarat, has an inspiring history of over 2000 years. According to the Greek historical writings, a celebrated Egyptian astronomer and geographer named Ptolemy mentioned Navsari’s port in his book written about 150 A.D. The geographic location he showed as Narispa, is in fact the Navsari of today.
The origin of the name “Navsari” has a very fascinating history. In the past, the city of Navsari has been associated with many names such as Nag Vardhana, Nag Shahi, Nag Sarika, Nag Mandal, Nav Sarika and Nav Sareh. Some of the legends associated with the various names of Navsari are as follows:
Shayashray Shiladitya, who ruled over Navsari in the seventh century named this city NAG VARDHANA in honor of his Guru Nag Vardhana. During the same period, the name changed to NAV SARIKA as is evidenced by a recovered copper plate dated 669 A.D. The legend is that Shayashray Shiladttya presented a copper plate to a priest in his town. The copper plate read that Shiladitya, the ruler of “Nav Sarika,” had bestowed a nearby village upon this priest of the Kashyapclan.
After subduing the rest of Gujarat, Umayyad Muslim invaders were repulsed in the vicinity of Navsari in 120-21 AH/738-39 AD
Navsari is located at 20.95°N 72.93°E. It has an average elevation of 9m (29′) above sea level. The city is located in southern Gujarat and is situated near the Purna River, within a few kilometres of the river’s delta, which is west of the city and empties into the Gulf of Khambhat.
Weather in Navsari is sunny from September to May, rainy from June to August. The average maximum and minimum temperatures are 40 °C (104 °F) and 18 °C (64 °F) respectively. The average annual rainfall is 122 cm (48 in).
The soil of the region is black. There are two lakes in the city: Dudhiya Talav (Talāv means Lake in Gujarati), and Sharbatiya Talav.
The city’s first settlers were the Chalukyas, followed by the Rashtrakutas, and subsequent settlements by the Parsis.
According to the 2001 census, Navsari had a population of 134,009. Males constitute 52% of the population and females 48%. Navsari has an average literacy rate of 76%, higher than the national average of 74.04%: male literacy is 80%, and female literacy is 72%. 11% of the population is under 6 years of age. Gujarati is the main language spoken in Navsari. Other language spoken is Marathi and Hindi.
According to the book Persian Inscriptions on Indian Monuments navsari has two meanings in the Persian language. nav (nov) means new and sari means sarai or home or town. sari also is name of a city Sari, Iran.
According to the Parsi tradition, in 1142 A.D., when they first came to Navsari, the city was named as NAG MANDAL. The Parsis found the city’s atmosphere similar to that of Sari region of Iran. In the Persian language, “now” means new and “Sari” refers to the region in Iran. Hence, the name NAO SARI came into being.
The Sayaji Vaibhav Public Library Navsari is an important public building in Navsari.
By Air: The nearest Domestic airport is at Surat Airport, 30 km north of Navsari, with the nearest international airports being Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport at Mumbai, 230 km to the south and to the north the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport, Ahmedabad. By Rail: Navsari also lies on the Mumbai-Delhi railway link, one of the busiest railway routes in India. By Road: Navsari is well connected by NH 228 also known as Sabarmati-Dandi Highway. NH 8 also passes through the city. Navsari is only 40 km south of Surat.