Acknowledged as a treasure house of rivers, grasslands and marshy wetlands, Kutch is the largest district in Gujarat. Apart from having a great ecology and landscapes, Kutch is also known for its exquisite culture, rich history, and vibrant wildlife. This place, bordered by the Gulf of Kutch and the Arabian Sea, is sure to blow your mind with its unique blend of natural beauty and vibrant culture.
Whether it’s to explore the entire region of the desolate yet vibrant Rann of Kutch, the flora and fauna of the Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary, or go shopping to explore the bandhani fabrics and handicrafts, the wonders of Kutch seem unending! Let us assuage your curiosity with our list of the top 7 things to do in Kutch.
This surreal salt desert of almost 7,500 sq km, which is a part of the Thar Desert, will leave you astounded as it’s one of the most popular tourist places in Gujarat. You’ll get to experience the most breathtaking view at dusk, especially if it’s a full moon day. The moonlight that reflects on the white sands of Rann of Kutch makes it look magical and a blissful experience you can never forget.
Feel The Festive Spirit During The Rann Utsav
If you want to enjoy the festive spirit in the Great Rann of Kutch, then you should definitely visit the place in winter. That’s when this most awaited festival takes place with several cultural activities for you to explore. You can enjoy various adventurous activities like paramotoring, ATV rides, rifle shooting, etc. If you’re planning to visit the place with your family, then you needn’t worry about your kids as there is an entertainment zone especially for kids with adventurous activities like hot air ballooning.
Feast Yourself With The Native Culture Of Kutch
Of all the places to visit in the Rann of Kutch, you wouldn’t want to miss out on the native culture and entertainment at Rann Utsav! There are native people selling bandhani fabrics with mirror and beading embroidery, handicrafts and other artifacts that will surely capture your eyes. When the sun sets, you’ll see people lighting a bonfire and performing various music events like folk arts, where you get a peek into their native culture.
Speaking of food available during this festival, the milk and ghee sweet treats will surely trigger your taste buds. There’s also the mouthwatering and most talked-about ice dabeli which is served with chilled curd and chutney.
Also read: Experiencing Onam Festival In Kerala.
The highest point in the Kutch district is at Kalo Dungar, which is the only place from where you can get a wide and extensive view of the Great Rann of Kutch. You’ll feel like you’re actually greeting the sky when you reach the top of this hill. So, it won’t come to you as a surprise that Kalo Dungar is almost 462 meters above sea level. You can just spread your arms wide open and embrace the jaw-dropping landscape that surrounds you.
Dattatreya Temple: A Spiritual Delight
The popularity of Kalo Dungar or Black Hill as you may know it is not limited to the vast hills and high elevation. A legendary temple of Lord Dattatreya, which is almost 400 years old, awaits your visit right at the top of the hill. This historic landmark should definitely be on your list of places to visit in Kutch if you’re visiting Kalo Dungar.
A Great Adventure At Kalo Dungar Anti-Gravity Slope
If you’re an adventurous person, the Kalo Dungar Anti-Gravity Slope in Kutch is one of the places to visit here. You can just switch off your car engine and see how your vehicle seemingly rolls up the slope, and not down! Another thing to do is hiking, but since that’s a steep slope and high elevation point, only professionals should give it a go.
Formerly known as Fergusson, the Kutch Museum was established in 1877, making it the oldest museum in Bhuj, Gujarat. So if you perceive yourself as an explorer and are inquisitive about history, you must make a stop here. Just so you know, the Kshatrapa inscription stones in this museum can be dated back to the 1st century CE. That’s not it, you’ll also find some of the seals from the Indus Valley Civilization here!
Discover The Harappan Culture
The different historical exhibits here are stored and divided into 11 sections of the museum. As you walk and explore these different sections, you’ll find yourself lost in the past when you look at the vast picture gallery and stone tablets. That’s not it, you’ll also get an insight of Kutch tribal life and culture when you look at the different exhibits of embroidery, paintings, sculptures, and musical instruments.
Get A Glimpse Of 18th Century Kutch
When you take a tour of the ground floor of the Kutch Museum, an interesting carving of Airavat will surely capture your attention. That’s a beautiful carving of an elephant with seven tusks whose making can be traced back to the 18th century. Apart from that, you wouldn’t want to miss a glimpse of the Kori coins which were the local currency of Kutch in its significant old days.
Also read: Traveling To Amritsar.
Triple the holiday fun by getting tanned at Mandvi Beach where you’ll get to experience the sea, sand, and sun. If you want a relaxed and refreshing holiday experience, this beach in Kutch is the place for you. As the sea waves come and gently touch your feet, you’ll find yourself at peace, away from your everyday mundane lifestyle. Are you an architecture enthusiast? Then visit the Vijay Vilas Palace nearby too!
Amazing Activities At Mandvi Beach
The beauty of Mandvi Beach is not just pleasant sunsets and picturesque views, there are tons of activities waiting for you. If you call yourself an adventurer, then you must definitely enjoy the amazing banana boat ride. That’s not it, you can even engage in other activities like zorbing, quad biking, or motorbiking. Whether you’re looking for a leisurely or a thrilling beach holiday, Mandvi Beach has it covered for you!
Be Blown Away By Windfarm Beach
As you take a stroll on the white sands of Mandvi Beach with a crispy clear sky above you, you’ll get to Windfarm Beach. Exactly what its name suggests, the sight of the windmills will certainly leave you enthralled. Well, that’s not the only surprising view you’ll encounter, you’ll also greet several migratory birds that often flock at Mandvi. One such kind are the flamingos, so don’t forget to carry your camera to capture this mesmerizing treat to your eyes.
A place of great religious significance, Narayan Sarovar in Kutch is known as one of the holiest places for a pilgrimage in India. Along with that, the beautiful lake, charming temples and sight of a variety of flora and fauna are what makes it a go-to place for wildlife lovers and the religious ones visiting Kutch.
A Pilgrimage To The Holy Koteshwar Temple
Don’t confuse it with the Kateshwar Buddhist Caves/Siyot Caves (which are just as worth visiting!) You can visit the Koteshwar Temple that has a sandstone structure and other holy shrines. It’s just 4 km away from Narayan Sarovar. Since the temple is known for the legendary Lord Shiva and Ravana, it is considered one of the holiest pilgrimage centers in Gujarat. Apart from that, you’ll get to see the most amazing sunset from here. Also, if you go towards the highest point of the temple at night, you’ll even get to see the city of Karachi in Pakistan with all the glowing lights, a view you will never forget.
Narayan Sarovar Wildlife Sanctuary
Whilst being acknowledged as one of the holiest places to visit in India, Narayan Sarovar is actually a blend of both religious and natural beauty. The Narayan Sarovar Wildlife Sanctuary has a great number of wildlife species that you can explore. The sight of chinkara, Indian bustard, caracal, and many other rare species will leave you staggered.
You’ll also find yourself surrounded by a mixed forest system that includes both grasslands and thorn forests. If you plan a trip here, don’t miss the chance of exploring the wildlife sanctuary as it has almost 252 species of flowering plants. Some of these are gorad, hemo, thor, gando baval, cariso, etc. So a trip to Narayan Sarvar will give you an experience of embracing the religious as well as wild side of the Kutch district.
Also read: Visiting The Bishnoi Community Near Jodhpur.
One thing is certain, when you visit the local and historical places, you get an essence and insight into their culture and lifestyle. If you’re planning a trip to Kutch, your trip wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Dholavira. Also known as Kotada Timba, Dholavira resides in the Bhachau taluka in Kutch. This is among the more popular tourist places in Kutch. You’ll see the most significant archaeological site of the Harappan Civilization at Dholavira, making it one of the grandest and prominent places to explore in Kutch.
Harappan Civilization: A Historic Landmark
You’ll be taken back in history when you witness the remains of Harappan architecture. These sites portray interesting constructions, especially the famous water management and sewage system of Harappa. Not just that, you can also get a glimpse of the ancient Harappan seals, pottery, weapons, and bangles.
Experience The Tribal Culture At Dhordo Village
Going to Kutch and not knowing about the charming handicrafts will make your holiday experience incomplete. Just an hour away from Dholavira is the Dhordo village, where you’ll find yourself surrounded by the rich tribal culture of Kutch. An interesting thing to note is that the Dhordo village is in close proximity to Rann of Kutch. Here, you’ll greet different tribal communities like the Rabari and the Maldhari. The craftsmanship of these tribals in making handicrafts and embroideries that have mirror work and silver ornaments will marvel you to such an extent that you’ll be compelled to buy them.
Also read: Kutch Rann Utsav: All You. Need To Know.
This rare and extraordinary sanctuary, also known as the Wild Ass Sanctuary, resides in the Little Rann of Kutch. If you’re wondering why it’s extraordinary, you should know that its area stretches to almost 4,954 sq km. This sanctuary is known for the habitat of ghudkhar, also known as the Indian Ass and hence the name.
Sightseeing Of Animal And Bird Species
If you want to go on an adventurous trip to explore the rich flora and fauna of the Kutch region, this is the right place for you. Just so you know, this sanctuary has grasslands that complement the different kinds of animal species residing here. Right from birds, reptiles and mammals, you’ll find a variety of animals here.
Don’t miss the jeep safari here while enjoying the sight of a variety of bird and animal species. You’re sure to encounter the Indian Wild Ass and so you better keep your camera ready for a quick click. So if you want to see the different migratory birds and especially the wild ass, you should consider visiting the sanctuary in the months of October and November.
You also get to see the Rabari and Bharwad tribes at the Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary. Not only that, but you’ll also encounter salt pans which are known to be the largest all over India. There are several hotels and resorts near the sanctuary where you can book your stay.
Looking for hotels in Kutch? Click here to find out!
These are just a few handpicked tourist places to visit and things to do in Kutch. Regardless of which spot you pick as your first place to explore, the beauty of the Kutch region will surely give you a once in a lifetime experience!
What Is Special In Kutch?
The white desert at the Great Rann of Kutch is something that makes the Kutch region so special. Apart from that, the handicrafts, rivers, sanctuaries with rich wildlife species and sandy beaches are some of the specialties of visiting Kutch.
What Is The Best Time To Visit Kutch?
It would be great if you visit the Kutch district in the months of October to November as you get to experience the Rann Utsav and other activities like sightseeing in various places and exploring the Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary.
How Much Does It Cost To Visit Rann Of Kutch?
A 4 days, 2 nights Rann of Kutch package can cost you anywhere between INR 10,000 to INR 13,000. If you’re visiting Rann of Kutch to enjoy the Utsav, you can book from budget to luxury tents that cost from INR 4,000 to INR 12,000 per night.
What Should I Buy In Kutch?
Kutch is especially known for its handicrafts and embroidery. You could buy embroidered shawls, bandhani dupattas or other local oil paintings.
How Many Days Is Enough For Rann Of Kutch?
If your travel plan involves visiting especially the Rann of Kutch, a span of 3 to 4 days will be enough to let you experience the beautiful salt desert. But if you’re planning to visit other archaeological sites, sanctuaries or temples, you’ll probably have to stay for a longer period of time.
Is Food Included In Rann Utsav?
Yes, there is a variety of food that will make your mouth water at the Rann Utsav at the Great Rann of Kutch. Just so you know, all these treats are made in pure ghee. You can relish the bajra ki roti which is one of the most famous delicacies there. There’s also ice dabeli and other milk and ghee sweet treats to fulfill all your cravings.
Which Is India's First Marine National Park?
The Marine National Park in the Gulf of Kutch is the first of its kind in India. It was declared a marine national park in 1972 and is home to a wide variety of coral reefs, plankton, whale sharks, and turtles.
Why Kutch Is Such A Unique Place?
Kutch is unique because for having the largest salt desert in the world.