Twenty things to experience in Kutch region
The region of Kutch is one of the most amazing places that one can explore as it has an impression of being a distinctive land. It is a region that differs in celebrating prosperity on an exceptional parameter. Divided into two sub-regions, Great Rann of Kutch and Little Rann of Kutch; this fine-looking destination can be ideal for holidaying in India.
- Bhuj:This small but beautiful city is one of the main regions of Kutch. It serves as the entry point. It is very advisable to start your exploration of Kutch from this city. With old world charm, amazing food and great markets, Bhuj should definitely be on your list.
- Pragmahal Palace:A palace, which may at first seem slightly out of place at the far western edge of India, looking more appropriate in France. Inside the palace, you can visit the main palace halls as well as climb stairs of the 45m bell tower for an exhilarating view of the city. And then stop for a refreshing glass of sugarcane juice on your way out of the compound.
- Aina Mahal:The Aina Mahal palace or ‘Hall of Mirrors’ was built during the flamboyant rule of Lakhpatji in the middle of the 18th century and is very beautiful. It also houses a handicraft museum where the crafts from various parts of Kutch is put. The Aina Mahal is at the northeast corner of Hamirsar lake, easily walk able from most of Bhuj. Anyone along the way will give you directions. Be sure to explore the rest of the compound outside the palace, with its beautiful carved doorways, elaborate window boxes and balconies. Most of the compound is in ruins, some brought down as recently as the 2001 earthquake. Poke around and explore unexpected places; don’t settle for just walking into the palace museum with a ready-made experience.
- Mandvi Beach:Mandvi Beach is one of the most serene beaches on the northwestern shore. It is the perfect destination to come and relax with family and friends on winter mornings.
- Camel ride on Mandvi Beach:The beach is often quiet and is a great place to spend time in solace. However, you can be surprised by the people who offer camel rides for Rs 10 or 20. The deal is not at all bad and therefore their offer should be accepted. In return of this small sum you can get a pleasant memorable camel ride along the beach.
- Dholavira:It is one of the largest remarkable excavations of the Indus Valley Civilization which was one of the most developed civilization roughly 4500 years ago. Witness history yourself. A visit to the site tells the story of the seven stages of the civilization and it is considered to be one of the grandest cities of its time. It is one of the five largest Harappan sites and the most prominent archaeological site in India belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization. This place was occupied from around 2650 BCE to 1450 BCE with a brief abandonment period.
- Village thali:You can enjoy a traditional village meal by the local village family in their houses. These meals are deliciously home cooked. All the families are very welcoming. The thali cost is as low as Rs 100 for an unlimited meal.
- Wood fossil park:Just about 10 kms ahead of Dholavira, is the wood fossil park. These wood fossils are amazingly preserved in a serene open setting. These date back to older than the Jurassic age. It’s a must visit site if you are into history and dinosaurs.
- Rock Garden:Just alongside the wood fossil park, there’s this garden with huge rocks of various shapes. The rocks are well arranged and make a beautiful sight for photography. You can click some very good photos sitting on the rock with white Rann in background.
- Rann, Dholavira:Apart from the Great Rann, there’s also one small part of it in Dholavira. You can find it near the wood fossil park and rock garden. This is a heaven for photography lovers.
- Kutch fossil park:It’s located in the Haripar region which is one hour drive from Bhuj. It is one of the very few sites in the world, where you could find dinosaur fossils. And all this is done by one man – Mohansingh Sodha, all by himself without any help.
- Little Rann:It’s a 10 km stretch of white desert between Bhuj and Dholavira. It’s comparatively less crowded and a great spot to enjoy the beauty and photography.
- Food:When in this part of India, you can actually enjoy one of the finest collection of food. Ranging from traditional dishes to street food, you will get everything. Be it Gujarati thali, sev khaman, kachori or jalebi faafda. It’s a blast for all foodies.
- Kalo Dongar:Kalo Dungar is the highest point of Kutch and offers a jaw dropping view of the entire region, especially the Rann and the Indo-Pak border. The highland is one of the most popular tourist places to visit in Kutch and can be accessed by buses or jeeps from Khavda. Hiking here is only recommended for professionals and experts.
- Jackal feeding:The local priests of the temple in Kala Dongar feed the jackals. It’s an age old tradition. The food generally offered is a vegetarian meal of rice and dal cooked in jaggery. If you are lucky, you can spot them.
- Local musicians:When you hike towards Kalo Dongar, you can witness a huge cultural vibe along the way. One of them are these local musicians who perform to entertain you with local folk music. It’s an experience in itself to watch them playing.
- Shopping:The whole region of Kutch is actually a paradise for shoppers. Be it the markets of Bhuj, Kala Dongar or Rann, you can have a great time shopping for some traditional handicrafts, clothing, jewellery, etc.
- Village stays:There are ample of options for the village stays in Kutch region. You can find plenty of home stays offering a great stay experience at an affordable cost. One such example of home stay is at the Hodka village. You can enjoy the homely feeling, home cooked traditional food and better understanding of the local culture. It’s a must have experience.
- The Great Rann:It’s a star attraction here. With Thar Desert on one side and the Arabian Sea on the other, Rann of Kutch is a spellbinding marvel of sand and salt. It is the most popular attraction of all tourist places in Kutch. The desert sparkles on full moon nights and offers a spectacular view.
- Rann Utsav:Organised by the Tourism Department of Gujarat, Rann Utsav is a grand winter rendezvous. It takes place when the air is crisp and the moon is at its fullest. The year 2017-’18 version is scheduled from Nov 1st, 2017 to Feb 20th, 2018.
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