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 18 km from Dharwad).
After the final defeat of the Peshwa by the British in 1818, Dharwar was incorporated into the territory of the British East India Company's Bombay Presidency. During the early 19th century, when the British were expanding their domains, they faced a lot of opposition from local rulers, including Baba Saheb of Naragund and Kittur Rani Chennamma.
Dharwad is famous for its natural scenic beauty and has inspired many a poet and writers of national and international renown. The Jnanapeeth award- the highest award in literature, was conferred to two giants of literature , Dr Dara Bendre and Dr V K Gokak. Both the writers lived and wrote some of their finest works in Dharwad.Patil Puttappa also being a renowned writer from Dharwad.
Shri Ranga and Girish Karnad being the most talented arists who hail from Dharwad.
Shri Ranga: A great dramatist whose dramas are repeatedly played even today. Wrote 22 plays and he was also Sanskrit scholar.
Girish Karnad who is a Actor , director , play writer. Recipient of prestigious Jnyanapeeth Award in 1999 for his contribution to Kannada literature and theatre. He has also given an enourmous contribution to Marathi theatre. Acted in many films and TV serials.
To name a few writers Prof. Bhusnurmath,Dr. Shankar Mokashi Punekar and Saali Ramachandra rayaru.
The Dharwad district of northern Karnataka boasts a formidable tradition in Hindustani music and adduces the following list in support of its claim:
The legendary Bhimsen Joshi currently based in pune,Gangubai Hangal,Mallikarjun Mansur,Kumar Gandharva, Basavraj,Rajguru,Madhav Gudi,Vasant Kanakapur,Sangeeta Katti,Jayateertha Vasanthrao Mevundi,Geeta Javadekar,Ganpati Bhat Hasanagi.
Dharwad produces milk products. Dharwad pedha is made from milk and khoa. Mishra's Line Bazar and Babu Singh's Thakur pedhas are among the better known.
A dish typical of Dharwad is Jolada Rotti made of jowar flour. It is made in two forms -- crisp and soft, and is usually eaten with spicy brinjal (eggplant) pallya, kalu pallya (beans), "agasi" or "guryellu" chutney powder and curds. The restaurants in Dharwad include LEA Canteen, Basappa Khanavali, Megha Darshini, Kamat Hotels, Maitri Paradise, Bombay Restaurant, Hoysala, Brindavana, Mandar Regency, Travel Inn, Ozone, etc.Hoysala,Maithri and Kamth Hotels provide you eith a complete family atmosphere. While the ones like Ozone which has shacks on mango tree tops,provides the ultimate fun experience for youngsters.Travel inn and Mandar regency,Red fort,Mayur Paradise are all exclusive experiences in Dharwad. Phadd made of rice flour is also a good dish, eaten with Sambhar and coconut or groundnut chutney. It is available at Paul Canteen near JSS college and Bombay Restaurant in Gandhi chowk.
Dharwad cultivates a variety of food products. The Dharwad Cotton Hybrid (DCH), a popular variety of cotton a few years back, was basically invented in University of Agricultural Sciences. In addition to this, Dharwad produces varieties of channa, kardi, soya, groundnut seeds,Sunflowers. Also, farmers grow sugarcane, paddy, jowar, wheat, green gram, bengal gram, munge and many other food products. Dharwad Alphonso mangoes and Navalur gauvas are also produced.EDUCATION
Dharwad has been a renowned centre of learning, with many famous high schools, colleges and universities. These include:
- St Joseph's High School, Dharwad
- University College of Law
- Karnatak University
- KPES ENGLISH MEDIUM SCHOOL
- KPES Law College
- Vidyaranya School and College, Dharwad. (One of the old school in Dharwad.)
- Training College for Men (Present DIET Est in 1856)
- JSS Banashankari Arts, Commerce & S.K.Gubbi Science College
- Kendriya Vidyalaya, Dharwad
- University public school , Dharwad
- Karnataka High School, Fort, Dharwad
- K.E.Boards High School, Dharwad, Malamaddi
- International Institute for Advanced Studies, Kalyan Nagar, Dharwad
- Karnatak College, Dharwad
- Kittle College
- C.S.I. College of Commerce
- Kousali Institute of Management
- Basel Mission English Medium High School
- University College of Law
- Pavan English Medium High School,Dharwad
- Presentation Girls High School, Dharwad
- St Joseph's High School, Dharwad
- University of Agricultural Sciences
- SDM College of Engineering and Technology
- Dakshina Bharata Hindi Prachar Sabhathe Deemed University
- SDM college of Dental Sciences
- Siddarameshwara margadarshi BEd college
- SDM college of Medical sciences
- Nettur Technical Training Foundation (NTTF)
- Kirana Sangeet Academy, Hosayellapur, Dharwad (music school)
- Baala Balaga Srujanasheela Shikshana Pratisthana
- Srujana Lalit Kala Maha Vidyala
- D. V. Halbhavi School Of Art
Unkal sarees are the assets of the women of Dharwad.The typical Dharwad belle looks ethnic and gorgeous in these sarees.They are available in both silk and cotton.
There probably doesn't exists another district like Dharwad which is as rich in culture and talent.
The peacefully life here has won the hearts of many people.The warm hearted people here are never short of a smile and hospitality.Though their language may not seem so polite initially but you will soon realise the genuine care the people of Dharwad are capable of.They create a homely atmosphere instantly.Pretence is not their cup of tea.Cheers to Dharwad a place i call home...