Calico Museum of Textiles
Calico Museum of Textiles
4
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.

Top ways to experience Calico Museum of Textiles and nearby attractions

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
318 reviews
Excellent
169
Very good
76
Average
33
Poor
12
Terrible
28

Leanne K
Melbourne, Australia55 contributions
Jan 2024 • Family
Be warned! You must do separate bookings for each person to come to this museum. I booked online and it was confirmed by email. I realised booking form didn’t specify how many visitors so I emailed back that we were a group of 3. On arrival an extremely rude man dressed in khaki told us we could only have one person. The other 5 people lined up were also being given a hard time. In the end we were told that no further booking was possible, not even for next day. We decided to send in 1 of our number. I went in and found myself the lone visitor surrounded by 4 or 5 of the khaki men, they were barking single word orders at me that I didn’t understand, but seemed to involve me leaving my bag and phone with them. I decided to leave, it was such a hostile environment, no good would come of my visit. So I didn’t see them museum, but I did have a bad experience. Maybe calico museum could read some of their reviews and make some changes. Surely the rudest people I have ever met in India!
Written January 12, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Anuradha
New Delhi, India327 contributions
Jan 2023 • Family
In the website prior booking is mentioned for group tours. Without a proper information, we, a family of 3 visited this place with a great expectation, being a great lover of textiles, but came back in disappointment as the gate was closed. Later it was opened by a person who was not cooperative enough. Timings of the museum are also weird. We were told to contact the museum over phone, nobody picked up the phone, it was disconnected twice. Two more ladies were also waiting outside, and returned in disappointment.
What is the purpose of creating such a museum when people cannot visit it !
Total waste of time and effort !
Written January 12, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

RajeevR
Bangalore District, India12 contributions
Jan 2024 • Couples
The booking process I was warned about , but the experience took the cake . There is no way you can figure how to get a couple in from the advance booking process . I had a valid permit and yet denied entry for the spouse. The staff makes you feel that you are visiting Mecca and are rude as hell . For an overrarted Palika bazaar , you would do well to avoid and step a few metres ahead and visit the Kasturbhai Lalbhai museum which houses a wonderful exhibit on Indigo .
Written January 25, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Louise
Mumbai, India1 contribution
Jul 2023 • Solo
I loved the textile collections The quality of work is superb
The collection is displayed very well I am very grateful the private collection is available to be viewed by the public
My negative comment would be that any wait time is not allowed on the property and it would be more friendly if a small area of the garden was open for the guests to sit and wait for the tour to commence.
Also the viewing of the collection is a little rushed . I would prefer a little more time to view textiles in detail.
Written July 18, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Vandana Natu
New Delhi, India110 contributions
Aug 2012 • Friends
Unlike many museums where you can walk in the moment you arrive, here one needs prior appointment as entry is restricted to just a few visitors per day. There is a reason for that. The exhalation and perspiration of visitors causes moisture levels to rise which has a threshold level beyond which the condition of museum artifacts (mainly the antique textiles) will deteriorate.

You can call them in advance on +91 079 22865995 or +91 9979738650 and book your place for the day you want to visit it. It is free of cost. You can also contact them on-
email info@calicomuseum.com
website www.calicomuseum.com

The viewing is divided into two guided tours. One from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. They take in only 20 visitors per day for this tour. You have to be at the gate by 10:15 am to enter (do not take this lightly as Gujarat is very punctual). It covers the textiles and costumes of India (17th century onward). Textiles used in trade with foreigners (15th century onward). Regional embroideries, weaving, dyeing and block printing techniques. All at an arms length which you can touch and feel.

The second tour is from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Be there by 2:45 pm. If not, your place might be given to last minute visitors as only 16 visitors are allowed in. This one covers the paintings, bronzes, manuscripts, woodwork, ceremonial artifacts, ritual arts etc.

Children below 10 years of age are not allowed.

You cannot take a camera inside. It is advisable to carry a small diary and a pen to scribble anything that you really like and would want your friends to definitely see when they visit. For example the article no. 109 is something I have not been able to forget. It is a saree from Orissa in Gold & red silk which has 'Barakhadi' (the oriya vowels) wowen on its drape. Exquisite work.

The souvenir shop has some unique offerings. Textile prints and books were my favourite. 'The journal of India Textiles' is a complete set of 7 journals with a monograph on printing on cotton at Ahmedabad. Apps. Rs. 2000/-

A set of 4 detailed brochures is a working guide and has photographs and techniques of all the Indian Embroideries you see in the museum (you might be tempted to write it all down during the tour but it is available as a single/collection in the shop). Appx. Rs. 500/- per brochure.

A coffee table book of 'Indian Costumes' from 18th to mid 20th century is quite detailed. It also has a section in the end with technical and explanatory notes with complete pattern cuts to show how to replicate these designs with tailoring today. Appx. Rs 4500/-

I pride myself at being able to differentiate machine embroidery and hand embroidery but this museum crushed my pride to bare threads. They were so fine that if they weren't so old, I would have brushed them aside as machine work. Our ancestors were quite hard working.

It is a dark quiet museum in a haveli (private mansion) with a cowdung+straw+clay flooring but don't let that dampen your spirits. The objects have been preserved painstakingly by the Sarabhais. It is definitely worth a visit when In Ahmedabad.

Bathroom facility is neat and clean.

Note: You are generally not allowed to leave the tour midway so do plan your day accordingly. You can choose to drop out of either tour 1 or tour 2 completely but it is not advisable to drop out once the tour has begun as it is a maze and you will need to be escorted out.

We had Kamalini Ben (Ben is gujarati for sister) as our guide. She was very good and knowledgeable. You need to ask questions to know more than they generally divulge.
Written December 30, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Polpessa
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia78 contributions
Jan 2012 • Solo
Please note this negative rating I have given the museum is NOT based on the quality of the collection, but rather on how I and others were treated by staff there when we tried to visit.

I was only in Ahmedabad for one day. I didn't know until I arrived late the night before my day in Ahmedabad that it houses a world-class, unique museum of textile arts.
I love traditional textiles so I was really excited and decided to go the following morning. I looked on their website and read the information page for visitors. Here is their link:
http://www.calicomuseum.com/information_for_visitors.htm

I found out that for the main textile area, there is only one tour a day at 10:30 AM. The morning I planned to go, I tried to call the numbers listed on the bottom of their website (see above) in order to confirm the tour time but no one answered. So I figured I would just show up a bit early. I got there half an hour early (at 10:00 AM) and asked the guards at the door about the tour. They said that if I didn't have a prior booking that I should wait and that if some of the 20 people who booked didn't show up, I would be able to go in, but that there were also 3 other people waiting ahead of me. I started talking to them and found out that one man had been waiting since 9:00 AM. He was passionate about textiles and spent his life making and collecting them and it was a dream of his to come to this place. He had also been counting the number of people who went in (since he arrived at 9AM!) and it was nowhere near 20. So we waited til 10:30, the start time for the tour. Still very few people had come in. We asked the guards at the door if all of the 20 people who booked ahead of time had arrived and they said no, and told me to call the manager as they had no authority to let us in. I called the manager and he told me "all full, it's fully booked". I said "yes but it's 10:30 and 20 people have not come in yet". He said "they are coming". I thanked him and talked to the others and we agreed that we would wait until 11AM and if the other people didn't arrive by this time they would have to let us in, right? So we waited til 11AM, at which point still, 20 people had not gone in - we were keeping a careful watch and counting everyone! I called the manager again and explained the situation and begged him to let us in and he said, again "no, the other people are coming". We are waiting for them.
At this point we were all very angry and disappointed and left.
I would have totally understood if everyone who had booked, had showed up by 10:30 - the stated tour time - but even HALF HOUR LATER, when some of these people had not showed up, surely they could've let us in?
For all four of us waiting it was our only day in Ahmedabad and our only chance to see these textiles.
Surely if some one is more than half an hour late (and maybe they didn't show up at all, as I suspect) then the manager could have allowed us 4 to come in after we waited patiently for over an hour, and one man waited for over 2 hours!!!
I asked if there was no way to see the textiles without a tour - NO. Is there some way to pay extra and arrange a private tour? NO. Is there nothing we can do? NO.

It doesn't say on the visitor information page of their website that you must book in advance - and I have never before encountered a state capital city museum where they only let in 20 people a day and you must book in advance to see their regular collection! If this is the case they should state it clearly on their website - "advance booking obligatory" but it doesn't.

I was extremely disappointed as were the other people waiting for me and for the museum manager who treated us this way, I ask, is this a good way to show hospitality towards guests who are so passionate about textiles that they will wait on the street for hours just to have a look? Turning people away when there is still space in the 20 person limited tour, waiting for imaginary people already more than half an hour late who maybe were not coming at all...management of this museum should be ashamed.

The point of a museum is to encourage interest and learning. Calico you fail miserably on this count from what I have seen.
Written January 6, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JAGDISH RAVAL
Ahmedabad, India4,020 contributions
Jan 2015 • Friends
We have taken advance permission as instant entry is not allowed.Previously museum was at Calico Mill and was inaugurated by Jawaharlal Nehru but now it is here since many years. We have been alloted a guide to explain. There are nine big halls where there specimens of historical 17th and 18th Century are exhibited. The collection consits of Wall panel, Curtain, Bedsheet, Shirts with Golden Emboiedary, Carpets,Tents, Patola of Patan, Kashmiri shawls and Blankets, Gujarati Bandhani and more than your imagine. A worldclass textile Museum. Please come here without precious belonging as they are neither allowing nor providing lockers.
Written March 30, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Writerontherecord
Los Angeles, CA74 contributions
Mar 2013 • Solo
Few museums anywhere on earth can boast of a textile collection as important as Ahmedabad's famed Calico museum, established by the philanthropic Sarabhai family who brought such important 20th-century architects as Le Corbusier and Louis Kahn to Ahmedabad. The collection is superb, the museum itself a rambling old building that used to be the family's home, with additions in the form of "rescued" facades and interiors from the city's antique wooden mansions.

But the Calico makes itself nearly impossible to access, severely limiting the number of visitors each day, doling out tickets months in advance as though it were a sold-out Broadway show, all in the guise of "protecting" its delicate contents.

And yet anyone even remotely familiar with contemporary conservation practices will notice the harmful plastic that enshrouds the museum's collections and which does far more damage than the exhalations of a few tourists! How and why this situation continues is a real mystery, since many scholars visit (or try to visit) the museum each year to study its treasures.

Also, while the gardens and grounds are lovely, ticket-holders are ushered through at breakneck speed under the watchful gaze of fierce-looking guards, which doesn't make for a very enjoyable experience, even if it's a must-see for anyone interested in historic textiles. Why there are so few books - and no postcards - offered for sale in the small shop is another mystery, but perhaps there's just no more funding for this important, if annoying, institution (which was rumored to be for sale some years back...)

By all means try and see the place, get your ticket in advance, but be advised you cannot bring a purse, camera, water, or anything from The Real World in with you, not even to check in a locker. Few museums are as unwelcoming as this one, so go with a smile and the attitude of visiting an old, important relative whose company must be tolerated if the inheritance is to materialize.
Written April 1, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GradualStudent
Boston9 contributions
Beautiful collection of textiles and tapestries, as well as the techniques by which they are made. Originally hosted by the Calico Mills (now closed) it is now located in the grand mansion of the Sarabhai house not far from Gahdhi Ashram, on the west side of the river. (note: some A'bad maps show the old location)

Tours are very limited, make sure to check their website. Typically, there is one tour beginning at 10:30 that takes 30 people max. Of these, 15 slots may be reserved and 15 are first-come, first serve. So get there by 10am.

This is one of the gems which visitors should see if they have only one or two days.
Written January 3, 2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Aparna mehra
Ahmedabad, India11 contributions
May 2018 • Friends
Been trying to register ob the website but there is no " Registration" tab or any online form. Wasted an hour going through the website. How much does it take to add a simple tab called for tours: register here .
Secondly the staff that answers the telephone is extremely rude. Upon complaining i was told that the care takers are receiving the phone calls. Why? When they do not know how to.
When i asked webby phone calls are not received by the managers upon calling at the timing given I three website i was told that i have to keep trying all day and for several days. I said you should specify this on the website. .. that the staff is inefficient and unprofessional.
Very pompous and high headed attitude. Can't say much about the museum as i never saw it. .. thanks to the staff i am hesitant to make further attempts at trying to book the tour.
Written May 27, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 271
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

Calico Museum of Textiles - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Calico Museum of Textiles



Calico Museum of Textiles Information

Excellent Reviews

169

Very Good Reviews

76

Calico Museum of Textiles Photos

18