Jamnagar, the main seat of princely state of Nawanagar was well known as a seat of oriental studies. It has a long list of renowned Ayurvedic physicians like Zandu Bhattji and Rasa Vaidya Bavabhai Achalji. The rulers of this state have patronised Ayurveda since very early days. During the regime of Jam Saheb Digvijay Singhji in 1940's and onwards Dr P.M. Mehta was court physician (trained in western medicine). He was a great learner and visionary. Dr. Mehta impressed upon the king and the queen of Jamnagar to establish a center for Ayurvedic Studies. Hence, Shri Gulabkunwarba Ayurvedic Society was established in 1940.
In 1944 a palacious building was constructed with generous contribution of the King of Nawanagar (Jamnagar) and some other rich persons at the cost of Rs.60, 00,000/- and the building was named as "Dhanwantari Mandir".
Under the banner of Shri Gulabkunwarba Ayurvedic Society renowned and enthusiastic physician of Ayurveda were collected and they materialized the gigantic job of the translation of 'Charak Sanhita' in three languages i.e. English, Hindi & Gujarati which was published by the society in six volumes.
On July 1st 1946 in Jamnagar a college for Ayurvedic Studies was established and named as Shri Gulabkunwarba Ayurveda Mahavidyalaya by the G.K. Ayurvedic Society. Renowned Ayurvedic physician of the era Vaidya Yadavji Trikramaji adorned the college as a first Principal.
After independence in 1947 Govt. of India started to work for revival of Ayurveda and few committees were appointed and they recommended the establishment of one advance Institution of Ayurveda. By that time Jamnagar had got infrastructure and name as seat of Ayurvedic learning. Hence in 1954 Govt. of India started a premier research center for Ayurveda in Jamnagar named as "Central Institute for Research in Indigenous System of Medicine (CIRISM)" with Dr. P. M. Mehta as its Director.
In 1956 Govt. of India had started another Institute in Jamnagar named as Post Graduate Training Center for Ayurveda (PGTCA) with Vaidya Bhaskar V. Gokhale as its Principal.
In some big cities of Gujarat State viz. Surat, Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar, Vadodara and Tankara Ayurvedic colleges were already in existence. This prompted the assembly of Gujarat State to pass legislation on 17.12.1965 to establish a University named as Gujarat Ayurveda University with its head quarter in Jamnagar. This University came in existence on January 5th, 1967 with Institute for Post Graduate Teaching & Research and other Ayurvedic Colleges of Gujarat State as affiliated colleges.