World renowned Kutch handicrafts from centuries old traditions
If you are in search of nature at its spectacular and barren best, the Kutch region
in Gujarat should be your port of call. The walled city of Bhuj, headquarters of
the Kutch district, derives its name from Bhujia fortress, which overlooks the city
from a hill nearby. History weighs heavily on the Kutch region, home to the Harappan
sites. Bhuj gained prominence when it became the capital of the Jadeja Rajput rulers
the mid-16th century. A shopper’s delight, the city’s beguiling bazaars sell a wide
variety of world renowned Kutch handicrafts. Bhuj also serves as a springboard for
visits to Flamingo city, a bird watcher’s paradise.
Summer: 40 - 28°C
Winter: 28 - 14°C
November to March
Cotton in summer and light woollen in winter
Gujarati, Hindi and English
Tourism Office: The Manager, Toran Rang Resort (Tourism Corporation
of Gujarat Ltd. --TCGL), Mirzapur Road, Bhuj, Tel: 02832 224910; TCGL, 1st floor,
Khetan Bhavan, Mumbai, Tel: 022 22024925. Website:
Bhuj’s airport is connected by flights from major cities like Mumbai.
Bhuj is a major railway station connecting several important cities in India.
Bhuj is connected by good motorable roads to all places in South India.
- 402 km from Ahmedabad
- 391 km from Bhavnagar
- 313 km from Jamnagar
- 324 km from Junagadh
- 314 km from Mehsana
- 226 km from Rajkot
Hotels in Kutch
Tel: 02832 220370 / 269408 / 252370
Opposite: Rajendra Baug
Tel: 02832 253422
Sagar Guest House
Jilla Panchayat Office
Tel: 02832 221479
Srinathji Guest House
Tel: 02832 222388
C/o Katira Hotels Pvt.Ltd
New Station Road
Tel: 02832 258999
VRP Guest House
Opposite: S.T. Stand
Tel: 02832 221388
Places to Visit
Dedicated to Shri Adinathji, the first Jain Thirthankar, the Dadavadi Jain is an
old Jain shrine attracting devotees.
Khengar Park & Hamirsar Lake
A popular park outside the city of Bhuj offers everything one needs for a day of
family fun. The park also has a beautiful lake, which adds charm to the place.
Mohammed Pannah Mosque
This mosque was built by Rao Shigodji - II in memory of the Muslim fakir Mohammed
An ornate Italian marble and sandstone building Rao Paragmalji’s Palace was built
in the latter part of the 19th century. Parts of it are now used for government
offices but the huge Darbar Hall and the Clock Tower are open to the public.
Rao Lakhpatji Chhatri (Cenotaphs Complex)
The final resting place of the royal household, the chhatris (cenotaphs) are erected
over cremation platforms of the rulers. These red sandstone chhatris were built
by Rao Lakha in the 18th century. The main chhatri is the most impressive and has
an artistically carved roof supported by decorated pillars.
Swami Narayan Temple
It is a beautiful temple built by Gangabai (daughter of Jethi Ghela Trikamji) in
memory of her mother-in-law.
The oldest museum of Gujarat, the Kutch Museum is a repository comprising 11 sections
on inscriptions, archaeology, sculpture, paintings, coins and currency of the Katchchh
state as well as from almost every country of the world, a shipping section showing
models of ships made in Mandvi, sections on musical instruments, arms and ammunition,
philately. The section on Natural History was added in 1978.
Aina Mahal Adjacent to the Prag Mahal, the beautiful 350 years
old palace was built at a cost of Rs. 2 million. It houses the Maharaja's private
collection of paintings, royal furniture, textiles, arms, ivory work, manuscripts,
Purneshwar (35 km)
The place is famous for ancient temple dating back to 9th century AD. Raised on
a high plinth, the shrine has some beautiful sculptures on display. In proximity
to the temple is located Vadimedi, a palace belonging to the Solanki period.
Anjar (41 km)
Anjar is the venue of many popular fairs. Most important fair is one held in glory
of Menkan dada, a local saint. The Jesal-Toral fair near the shrine of Jesal and
Toral, the legendary lovers, is another important fair. Anjar’s other claim
to fame is its Ajrakh printing technique as well as metal ware specialties such
as carved nutcrackers, scissors and knives.
Gandhidham (54 km)
The township set up to accommodate refugees in the wake of the partition of India
has three distinct sectors Adipur, the industrial centre, Sardarganj the commercial
centre and Gopalpuri, the residential centre.
Ravechi Temple (170 km)
One of the most splendid excursions from Bhuj the place is visited by hordes of
people the presiding deity of the shrine is Goddess Ravechi. A colourful fair
is held every year at Ravechi usually in September ever year.
Mandvi (75 km)
One of Gujarat’s most evocative destinations, Mandvi is a land of sun-drenched beach.
Founded in 1581 AD Mandvi has a fortification with 25 bastions. The place is a well-known
centre for the production of the country crafts. The Rukmavati Bridge, built in
1883, is the longest existing one of its kind. Mandvi is also well known for its
beautiful silver sand beach and the imposing Vijayvilas Palace built in 1935.
Banni (65 km)
This grassland in the great Rann of Kutch is known for its small villages which
are a great storehouse of rich textiles and handicrafts especially embroideries,
leather foot wear, block printed fabric, pottery, wood carvings and metal ware manufactured
by the local people.
Kandla (68 km)
This is one of India’s six major ports and a free trade zone.
Hodaka (53 km)
This cultural village is located in the Banni Grassland, right on the edge of the
great salt desert – the Rann. The village is a cluster of houses situated close
to each other. Seven to eight families live in a cluster. The village is famous
for its craft like decorative mirrors, lamps, hand fans, letter boxes, wall hanging,
lather, clay, wood, metal and mud work especially the exquisite silver jewellery.
The artisans sell their goods directly from their artistic huts which are popularly
known as Bhungas.
A unique Rabari village, it has about 125 exquisitely designed Kachchhi huts inhabited
by about 400 Rabaris. Most of the male population is generally away from the village.
The interiors of the huts present a pleasant spectacle of native art. A chat with
the womenfolk will introduce visitors to this insulated and pristine culture, a
world so different.
Bhadreshwar (75 km)
Bhadreshwar is the site of the ancient Bhadravati Nagri of King Yuvnashva mentioned
in the Mahabharata. Most of the ruins of the city have been carried away, including
its foundations stones which have been dug up and removed. The remains of
a large stepwell, a Shiva temple and an old Jain temple are among the ancient relics
that can be seen here.
Dhola Veera (100 km)
The archaeological excavations here have revealed an Indus Valley Civilisation site.
It is one of the oldest and largest Indus sites in India. It is located
on Khadir Island surrounded on all sides by the Great Rann of Kutch.
Kera (40 km)
Kera is famous mainly due to the 10th century Shiva Temple. The present day ruins
are indicative of how beautiful this temple must have been centuries ago. It was
damaged in the earthquake of 1819 AD. In the same area is also a Muslim shrine of
Ghulam Ali Shah. The annual
Urs held here attracts devotees from all faiths. Pilgrims walking on burning coals
is the principal feature of the Urs.
Rann of Kutch (100 km)
The little Rann of Kutch is the home of the Indian Wild Ass. In winter the Great
Rann of Kutch becomes the breeding ground for flamingos and pelicans. The Rann of
Kutch is also worth visiting for the local people who have preserved their customs
and traditions through the ages, who express themselves artistically in the form
of handicrafts and beautifully designed day to day objects, their houses, etc.
Flamingo City (100 km)
In Gujarat, flamingos breed in the interior of the Great Rann of Kutch, their breeding
colony is being known as ‘Flamingo City’. To reach ‘Flamingo City’ one has to travel
up to Khavda from Bhuj (80 km) by road and then further journey on camel back for
five to six hours. Necessary clearance from the Border Security Force is required
to be obtained before visiting this area, which is given by the District Collector
of Kutch at Bhuj.
Narayan Sarovar Chinkara Sanctuary (100 km)
Spread over an area of 765 sq km, the sanctuary’s main attractions are
the chinkara, Indian wolf, desert monitor lizard, black partridge, and flamingo.
One can also see the blue bull, wild boar, jackal, striped hyena, hare, Indian fox,
desert cat , porcupine, spiny tailed lizard and birds like haubara bustard, lesser
Kalo Dungar (125 km)
It is tallest hillock in Kutch and has a shrine of Dattatreya widely known as Pacchamai
Pir. A fair is held in the month of Sravan every year.
Narayan Sarovar (154 km)
The temple at Narayan Sarovar houses the shrine of Trikamaiji. The lake itself
is considered to be one of the five holy lakes mentioned in the ancient Hindu scriptures.
A tributary of the Indus flowed nearby. Best season to visit this place September
to January. Every year pilgrims visit Narayan Sarovar for the Kartik Purnima and
Tulsi Vivah Festivals. En route to Narayan Sarovar lies the shrine of Ashapura at
Mata-na-madh, the mother goddess, deity of Jadeja Rajputs. Located
2 km away from Narayan Sarovar is the famous Mahadev Temple of Koteshwar which is
mentioned in the Puranas. The existing temple is situated on a high plinth
overlooking the sea.
Wild Ass Sanctuary (200 km)
Situated between Surendranagar and Kutch district this sanctuary covering an area
of 5,000 sq km is the only home of the Indian Wild Ass. One can also see other
species of wildlife such as panther, black buck, blue bull, wolves, jackals, wild
boar and birds. The Sanctuary could be best explored by making a base at Dasada
/ Zainabad or Dharangadhra / Halvad. Dasada is 33 km away from Viramgam and 90 km
from Ahmedabad by road.
Kutch Mahotsav is usually organised during February /March by TCGL.