Kutch districtÂ Â is adistrictÂ ofÂ GujaratÂ state in westernÂ India. Covering an area of 45,652Â kmÂ²,it is the largest district of India.Kutch literally means something which intermittently becomes wet and dry; a large part of this district is known asÂ Rann of KutchÂ which is shallowÂ wetlandwhich submerges in water during the rainy season and becomes dry during other seasons. The same word is also used in the languages ofÂ Sanskritorigin for a tortoise. The Rann is famous for its marshyÂ salt flatsÂ which become snow white after the shallow water dries up each season before themonsoonÂ rains.The district is also famous forÂ ecologicallyÂ importantÂ Banni grasslandsÂ with their seasonalÂ marshyÂ wetlandsÂ which form the outer belt of the Rann of Kutch.
HOW Â TO REACH
Â by Air:-
Tourists can reach Bhuj, the main town of Kutch by daily flights from Mumbai.
There is a train called Kutch Express, which is available from Mumbai via Ahmedabad up to Gandhidham, though it is a slightly long route, but is an experience on its own.
Â by Road:-
To travel by road is an amazing experience to explore Kutch with its wild and raw beauty. There are a number of buses available from Ahmedabad to this place. Kutch is connected to major cities in the state via state buses and taxis. Several private companies run sleeper buses for travellers to Bhuj from Ahmedabad
WHAT TO SEE
Narayan Sarovar is a beautiful area with multiple fresh lakes close to Gulf of Kutch, which is also considered as holy by Hindu travellers. Located 125 km from Bhuj at almost the western point of India, Narayan Sarovar in Kutch is the most ancient and pious place for Hindus. The sarovars at Narayan Sarovar are rain-fed bodies of fresh water situated just 2 kms from the salty water of the Gulf of Kutch. Narayan Saroval is said to be one of the five holy lakes of Hindus in India other than Mansarovar in Tibet, Pampa in Karnataka, Bhuvaneswar in Orissa and Pushkar in Rajasthan. There is a temple complex here famous for its ancient architecture with many temples including that of Shri Trikamraiji, Laxminarayan, Govardhannathji etc.
Koteshwar temple, located about 215 km from Bhuj (main city of Kutch) past the vast expanse of desert is holy place for Hindu tourists. Koteshwar temple is situated on a high plinth over looking the sea and is the last outpost of human construction at the westernmost limit of India.
Lakhpat, 151 km from Bhuj (Kutch), is the last town in the western part of India, on the border of India-Pakistan. Lakhpat should be visited by tourists for one of the oldest and unique Gurudwara and a beautiful tomb of Gosh Muhammad (famous saint) constructed with hard black stone.
Aaina Mahal is an old palace that was built in 18th century under the rule of Lakhpatji. Aaina Mahal has now been transformed into a museum for tourists. The Mahal with its double storied building lies in the old part of the city of Bhuj (Kutch) at the north-east corner of Hamirsar Lake.
Prag Mahal, located next to Aaina Mahal in the same walled compound, is a splendid palace made of Italian marble and sandstone. Prag Mahal was commissioned by King Pragmalji in 1860s and designed in Italian Gothic style by Colonel Henry Saint Wilkins.
Kutch Museum is the oldest Museum in Gujarat that was established in 1877. Main attraction for touists is its largest collection of Kshatrapa inscriptions, dating back to the 1st century AD. There is a separate section in the museum which is devoted to tribal culture; it exhibits many examples of ancient artifacts, folk arts and crafts. Kutch museum also has exhibits of embroidery, paintings, arms, musical instruments, gold and silver ornaments, textiles,Â sculpture and precious metalwork.
Dholavira, 250 km from Bhuj, is an excavated Harappan site that was discovered in 1967. The site is spread over 100 Hectares with main tourists attractions being the ancient open stadium, ancient signboard, and world’s earliest water conservation system.
Mandvi, located at a distance of 75 km from Bhuj on the banks of Rukmavati River, is famous among travellers as Paris of Kutch. Mandvi’s main tourist attractions are Vijay Vilas Palace, its beautiful beaches and Ship building yard.
Vijay Vilas Palace:-
Vijay Vilas Palace, palace of King Maharao Vijay Singhji, is a must visit for tourists for its eclectic blend of architectural styles. Vijay Vilas Palace is nestled in 450 acres of lush greenery, with 2 kilometers of private beach and its own private sanctuary maintained in an eco-friendly manner. Sets of this palace have been used in many Hindi films. From the top of the Palace, a panoramic view of this coastal town can be seen.
Shopping in Bhuj is definitely a lifetime experience. Bhuj is a fascinating place to be in because of its gateways, old palaces, ornate temples and winding lanes. There are quite a few shopping centers that make shopping in Bhuj quite easy.
The embroidered garments with mirror-work and the camel wool shawls are extremely famous; as is the chunky silver jewellery and carved woodcraft. The items on offer in the Bhuj markets also include silver jewelry, gold jewelry and many other items. Tourists come from every corner of the world and from all over India for shopping in Bhuj, Gujarat. Tourists should be good at bargaining because the bargaining skill will definitely be required.
Delicious local cuisines as well as cuisines from all parts of India are served at the wide array of restaurants in Kutch. Enjoy a hearty lunch and a delectable dinner at the prime restaurants of Kutch. The restaurants here offer quality service coupled with mouth â€“ watering cuisines. Non-vegetarian or vegetarian â€“ it does not matter as you get sumptuous varieties of dishes in both the categories at the restaurants in Kutch.Restaurants in Kutch – Restaurants in Kutch show a variety of food and cuisines, from Kutch cuisines to international foods.