City : Dharwad
Location : Southern India
Language : Kannad

Know About Dharwad

Dharwad, also known as Dharwar, is a city in India's Karnataka state. Dharwad is famous for its Dharwad pedha - a milk-based sweetmeat.

Dharwad is the administrative seat of the Dharwad District. The municipality of Hubli-Dharwad (resulting from a merger with neighbouring Hubli in 1961) covers 191 km². Dharwad is located 425km northwest of Bangalore, on the main highway between Bangalore and Pune in Maharashtra. KREIS North Unit of National Projects Construction Corporation is headquartered here.


The word "Dharwad" means a place of rest in a long travel or a small habitation. For centuries, Dharwad acted as a gateway between the Malenaadu (western mountains) and the Bayalu seeme (plains) and it became a resting place for travellers. The name is derived from the Sanskrit word 'dwarawata', 'dwara' meaning "door" and 'wata' or 'wada'meaning "town".

Another theory is that during the Vijayanagara rule of Dharwad there was a ruler by name "of Dharav" (1403), and Dharwad got its name from him. There are some inscriptions that refer to Dharwad as Kampana Sthana.

Inscriptions found near Durga Devi temple in Narendra (a nearby village) and RLS High School date back to the 12th century and have references to Dharwad. This makes Dharwad at least 900 years old. Also, there is an inscription at Hanuman Temple at Bokyapur lake near Garag (a village about 18km from Dharwad).

The Chalukyas ruled Dharwad during the 12th century. A stone inscription indicates that there was a ruler by the name of BhaskaraDeva in 1117. In the 14th century the district was first overrun by the Bahmani Sultanate, after which it was annexed to the newly established Hindu kingdom of Vijayanagar, an official of which named Dhar Rao, according to local tradition, built the fort at Dharwad town in 1403.

After the defeat of the king of Vijayanagar at Talikot (1565), Dharwad was for a few years practically independent under its Hindu governor; but in 1573 the fort was captured by the sultan of Bijapur, Adil Shah, and Dharwad was annexed to his dominions. Adil Shah built a fort in an area later called MannaKille, and later Nazratabad. With this fort, the strategic importance of Dharwad increased and it thus attracted the attention of subsequent conquerors, including Aurangzeb, Shivaji, Aurangzeb's son Mu Azam, Peshwa Balaji Rao, Hyder Ali, Tipu Sultan and finally the British colonizers.


Dharwad is situated on the edge of Western Ghats and hence a hilly place. Many years back, Dhwarwad was known for it's lakes; many have dried out, like Koppadkere and Yemmikere. The ones you can see now are Sadhankere, Kelgeri and Nuggikere.

Dharwad is famous for its climate; warm summers, cold winters, and rainy season is wet through out and also it is famous for its Quality Education. It is the city of Education and most of the North Karnataka students prefer to study here. Retired people found Dharwad an ideal place to settle down.


Dharwad has contributed to some of the greatest exponents of Hindustani music - Sawai Gandharva, Mallikarjun Mansur, Bhimsen Joshi (now living in Pune), Basavaraj Rajaguru, Kumar Gandharva and Gangubai Hangal.

Dharwad is an unlikely outpost of the Kirana Gharana. Ustad Abdul Karim Khan was a frequent visitor to Mysore Darbar, where he had been conferred the title of Sangeet Ratna. On the way to Mysore, he used to stay with his brother in Dharwad, where he taught his most famous disciple, Sawai Gandharva. Sawai Gandharva in turn was the guru to Gangubai Hangal, Bhimsen Joshi and Basavaraj Rajaguru.



Dharwad is famous for milk products. The Legendary Dharwad pedha is made from milk and khoa. Mishra's * Famous Mishra's Divya Pedha & Babu Singh's Thakur pedhas are the most popular.

Jolada Roti made of (jowar) flour, along with spicy and lip-smacking Brinjal idigai pallya (sabji), kalu pallya agasi, guryellu chatni and curds are sought-after dishes. The now-closed Dharwad Restaurant run by Kidiyoor Sarvothama Rao and Janardhan Rao was famous for lip-smacking masala dosa. There are many other restaurants like LEA Canteen, Basappa Khanavali, Megha Darshini, Kamat Hotels, Maitri Paradise, Bombay Restaurant, Hoysala, Brindavana, etc. which provide Benne Dosa and other varieties of Dosas.


Dharwad is also very famous for cultivating various food products. The DCH (Dharwad Cotton Hybrid) was basically invented in University of Agricultural Sciences which was a popular variety of cotton few years back. In addition to this Dharwad is well known for the varities of channa, kardi, soya and groundnut seeds. Also, farmers grow sugarcane, paddy, jowar, wheat, green gram, munge and many other food products.

Dharwad Alphonso mangoes and Navalur gauvas are also very popular.