Bhuj, White Rann of Kutch & Mandvi Beach - The Art, Craft & Nature Tour of Gujarat
Package price per person sharing twin
Product Code : AGORA555
Bhuj, White Rann of Kutch & Mandvi Beach - The Art, Craft & Nature Tour of Gujarat will begin with pick up from Bhuj airport. Explore city attraction with walk around Hamirsar Lake, see the Hall of Mirrors at the Aina Mahal, climb the bell tower of the Prag Mahal, visit Kutch Museum & Ramakund stepwell. Then drive to The Great Rann of Kutch a salt marsh in the Thar Desert about 7500 km2 in area reputed to be one of the largest salt deserts in the world. This area inhabited by the Kutchi people is rich centre of treditional art and craft. Next head to Mandvi a beach resort & major port with four-hundred-year-old ship building industry. Tour will end with drop off at Bhuj airport. Accompanied tour guide and transport will remain on disposal at your service.
Day 1: Arrive Bhuj
On arrival at Bhuj airport assistance and transfer to hotel.
Later city tour visit The Aaina Mahal Palace built during the flamboyant rule of Lakhpatji in the middle of the 18th century. However, what once stood proudly with glittering glasses, antique clocks and exotic tile works was shaken and dishevelled in the 2001 earthquake that hit Bhuj. The loss was tragic, but it has now been recovered and renovated for people to visit safely again. Be sure to explore the rest of the compound outside the palace, with its beautiful carved doorways, elaborate window boxes and balconies. Prag Mahal one of the architectural wonders in India, built-in the 19th century next to the popular Aina Mahal. The grand palace boasts of Gothic-style windows and Corinthian pillars around it. The opulent Mahal has the second tallest clock tower in the country which offers an amazing view from the top. A part of the palace has been converted into a museum with archives and personal items of the royal family on display. Imposing and beautiful in itself, the resplendent palace is made mostly out of red sandstone. There are intricate carvings done on the walls with beautiful art, and the most amazing thing is the jaali work on the jharokhas, those are exquisite in appearance. Shri Swaminarayan Temple initially built in the year 1822, it was the first of many Sampraday Swaminarayan temples. Located near the Hamirsar Lake completely white structure is an architectural masterpiece built of marble and is a stunning place to visit. Ramkund is a square stepwell, about 56 ft on one side, whose walls have carved miniature idols depicting the 10 incarnations of Lord Vishnu and sculptures of Lord Rama, Devi Sita, Lord Lakshmana and Lord Hanuman. The architecture of the stepwell is geometrical and leaves one in awe of the skill of that time. As you descend down the steps to reach the water, you are engulfed by a sudden coolness that is not to be found above the stepwell. While going deeper into the well, one can almost be transported to the ancient times when it was a place of water storage. Ramkund is located across the Kutch Museum and behind the Ram Dhun Temple. Overnight at hotel.
Day 2: Bhuj - Hodka (65kms/ 1.3hrs approx)
Breakfast at hotel drive to Banni Region of Kutch visiting Nirona Village for Rogan arts on a piece of cloth. The word Rogan comes from Persian and means oil-based. The process of making the natural colors used in art gives it such a name. Castor oil is heated on a fire for about 12 hours and then cast into cold water to give a thick residue called the Rogan. This is then mixed with stone pigments to lend it different hues. Next, the artisan uses a six-inch metal stick to paint with a fine thread of Rogan on cloth. Seeing it live made us realize how delicately the Rogan thread has to be led with precision to give shape to one’s imagination. The Luhars in Nirona have been preserving the Copper Crafts making over seven generations. As a result you can see some heart-shaped wind chimes, a xylophone made of bells and even a few fauna inspired bell pieces. And Lacquer Works on wooden utensils. Continue to Hodka check in at resort and lunch. Evening drive short distance to enjoy the breathtaking views of the White Rann. Dinner and overnight at Hodka.
Day 3: Hodka - White Rann of Kutch
Today very early in the morning drive to White Rann of Kutch to see the sunrise. The Great Rann of Kutch is a salt marsh in the Thar Desert. It is about 7500 km2 (2900 sq miles) in the area and is reputed to be one of the largest salt deserts in the world. Later you will be visiting Dhordo village this area which has White Rann. You can see Mutwa Muslim Community here in Dhordo. Return Hodka for breakfast and later visit a small Pathan community hamlet engaged in Embroidery. Continue to Khavda to see Potters and Samma tribe. Later leave for Kala Dungar to view the beautiful sunset. Dinner and overnight at Hodka.
Day 4: Hodka - Mandvi (135kms/ 3hrs approx)
Breakfast at hotel, drive to Mandvi en-route visit Sumarasar Village for Weaving of Shawl and Stole Weaving in Kutch a traditional profession and skills are passed on from father to son. After having an experience of Weaving drive to Bhuj to meet Abu Baker Wazirs, Museum of Quality Textiles for over 50 years. Being collectors of antique Indian textiles and embroideries for over 45 years. Continue to Mandvi check in at resort.
Later visit Vijay Vilas Palace built in 1929 by Rao Vijayrajji, this palace is very well-maintained, and often the scene of filming for Bollywood productions. It was built of red sandstone in the Rajput style, with a main central dome, Bengal domes at the sides, bastions at the corner, and colored glass windows. The balcony at the top affords a superb view of the surrounding area, and the king's tomb can also be seen.
Mandvi Town known for its shipbuilding centre. The local carpenters still make ocean-going Dhows in much the same way that their ancestors had done a century ago. One can go and visit the men at work, shaping the great vessels with hand tools and coaxing the seasoned timber into shape. The carrying capacity of these boats can vary from 250 tons to 1000 tons. The predecessors of these very same ships had roamed the Indian Ocean and made Kutch a maritime power. Handmade models of these Dhows can also be procured from local artisans. Rest time free and easy to relax on the beach. Dinner and overnight at Beach Resort.
Day 5: Mandvi - Mundra - Bhuj (100kms/ 2hrs approx)
Breakfast at hotel drive to Mundra to see some of the finest Batik workshops. The process starts with the removal of starch from the plain white fabric. The fabric is soaked in soda and with thorough rinsing; the starch from the fabric is removed. A work table is prepared by spreading river-bed sand on a long rectangular surface. The printer begins block-printing with wax once the plain fabric is laid out on the table.
Continue drive to Bhuj and drop off to airport to board flight for onward destination.
4 Nights accommodation in offered hotels or similar (standard room)
Daily Breakfast at hotel
Deluxe Air-conditioned private vehicle with English speaking chauffeur as per tour program
English speaking tour guide on sightseeing days (local guide in each city).
Bottled drinking water in car
Monument entrance fees mentioned in the itinerary.
Applicable GST (government taxes).
Any flight ticket
Main Meals, Lunch or dinner unless mentioned
Expenses of personal nature like liquor, laundry, tips, telephone, fax, internet etc.
Or anything not mentioned above.