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Things To Do In Kutch (Kachchh)
The Kutch region is a remarkably distinctive land as it differs in celebrating prosperity at an exceptional level. The whole region is divided into two sub-regions. The Great Rann of Kutch and Little Rann of Kutch are the fine-looking destinations which will be ideal for spending a wonderful holiday. Visiting here means transporting oneself to a new world. Let’s discuss some amazing things that you can do here in Kutch.
Get Spellbound by the Rann of Kutch
Slouching in an area of about 7000 square km, the White Salt Desert in the great Rann of Kutch is a magical place to be at. Girdled by the massive Arabian sea from one side and the white sand on the other, this is a heavenly place on earth mesmerizing visitors and leaving them speechless. Located at about 100 km from the Bhuj city, this white desert seems like a surreal heaven. A camel ride here or a long walk is enough to get one all excited. Witnessing the sun go down is apparently the best thing to do here. Selfies and photos with your loved ones are simply worth capturing. To roam freely, permits are required. Also, it is suggested to carry sunglasses as it will help you see better when the sun is just over the head.
Explore the Hidden Gems in Dholavira
The excavation site of Dholavira in the Kutch region is an excellent opportunity for history lovers to unearth its hidden gems. Discovered by the Indian Archeological Department, this is basically a slice of the great Harappan Civilization. The remains at the site highlight the cultural richness of Harappa and reveal their exceptional understanding of planning and erecting a splendid infrastructure in ancient times. You’ll be amazed to find the evidence of a well-built harvesting system, a network of tanks and sewage system. One striking discovery here is an epitaph with 10 large signs, which is considered to be one of the first indications of a written language. A small museum at the entrance has various artifacts that display the lifestyle during that civilization. Progression from mud and basic tools to iron and copper implements, gold jewellery, and cooking vessels is also pretty evident.
Visit the Ancient Bhadreshwar Temple
The Bhadreshwar Jain temple is indeed one of the ancient temples in Bhadravati. Undeniably, one of the most remarkable places in Kutch and Bhuj. The building has recently been redecorated and fully renovated to a new complex. The foremost temple is exceptionally stunning, made of white marble entirely. Visitors talk about it being a marvelous architecture with engraved pillars showcasing fine artwork of ancient and recent times. Surrounding the central temple, there are nearly 52 miniature monuments and tombs with mosques about two centuries old. The Parshwanath idol is considered to be as old as 500 BC. Simply remarkable.
Spend a Day in the Wild Ass Sanctuary
The Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary is surely an interesting place in Kutch (the Little Rann). Spreading over an area of 4954 square km, the sanctuary is the natural habitat for the Indian Ass, known locally as ghudkhar or khur. Spotting animals such as Fox, Chinkara, Desert Cats, Hedgehog, Jackal, Wolf, and Blue Bulls among others is indeed exciting to see them roaming freely. You can also sight several species of birds, reptiles, and crocodiles. However, spotting of wild ass and birds such as Bustard and falcons, and exploring the largest salt pan in the country is also famous among tourists.
Traverse Back in the Past — Forts
Kutch has several forts that remind of its glorious past. The Roha Fort, which is a sensational archeological site since the British time. The fort has several rumors and legends of being haunted but people still visit this place to admire the beauty of the splendid architectural designs. This fort was the resting place of Chavda Vansh, a community of Rajputs, and still stands tall after 150 years. The next in the list is the Kanthkot Fort which is considered to be one of the most ancient forts of all. Placed on an isolated steep hill, it is the oldest fort in the country, erected even before the 8th century as some legends say. This place is a testimonial of many great experiences in the past and has seen many kingdoms changing over several centuries.
Jadejas were the main rulers who were still ruling this place until independence. The Lakhpat is yet another fort that attracts several visitors. Erected in the 18th century it just amazing to witness the giant structure firsthand where the 7 km walls speak for themselves about the grandeur of this last village of the Indian border.
Feel Royal at the Vijay Villas Palace
The famous Vijay Vilas Palace is one of the most famous tourist spots here. Situated in Mandvi at about 65 km from the Bhuj city, this picturesque town was once the center for the shipbuilding industry. But these days it boasts of being a rich heritage.
The Vijay Vilas Palace is indeed the crown of the town and has become very popular in Bollywood as being the shooting location for many movies including the award-winning, Lagaan. Salman Khan starer, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, and the recent movie, R Rajkumar are some of the movies which featured this majestic palace. Try interacting with the caretakers, and they shall narrate a couple of interesting stories of the film shoots too. The panoramic view from the terrace of this two-story structure, with Chhatri of Vijayaraji, is simply breathtaking.
Experience Nature and Religion at Narayan Sarovar
Narayan Sarovar is yet another famous tourist spot around Kutch comprising of mangrove forests, water reservoirs, and two transient streams Kali and Kapurasi flowing through the sanctuary. Diverse fauna and almost 252 genera of floral species can be spotted which include, but not limited to babul and kerdo. This site is also sacred Hindu ground and lies in the vicinity of an ancient temple, Koteshwar. Narayan Sarovar is one of the 5 holiest lakes in Hinduism, which makes it an apparent choice for pilgrimage in India.
Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary
The Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary is a popular spot to visit in the Rann of Kutch. It spreads over 2798 square miles and has rare and endangered wild animals such as the desert fox, chinkara, jackals, wild boar, and porcupine, amongst others. The best attraction is spotting of flamingos, which is a must-visit for bird lovers.
Cool-off at the Mandvi Beach
Within the close proximity of the Vijay Vilas Palace, the Mandvi Beach awaits to give you a rejuvenating experience. Being at this beach could be one of the most peaceful experiences of your life because of the quiet on the beach. However, your undisturbed situation can be interrupted by the people who offer a ride on their camels for a mere INR 10 or 20. Isn’t that cheap? Not bad at all.
Get on the camel to get a pleasant and a memorable ride along the sublime beach. To make things more exciting, you can try horse riding or the water scooter ride available at the beach. While you choose your ride, do not forget to take some amazing pictures of your ride and the pelicans that saunter along the beach.