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Gujarat - a melting pot of cultures

Latest excavations suggest of a civilization prior to 7500 BC near Gujarat coast. Gujarat has since ancient times witnessed meetings of different civilizations and cultures. Gujarat today is the melting pot of people of different ethnicities and varied lifestyles. The distinct architecture of monuments is a rare blend known as Indo-Saracenic. The art forms, clothing and dialects change rapidly as one travels in Gujarat. Each place seems to be set in a different time frame altogether. Even the wildlife here is completely unique found nowhere else. The contrasts of landscape, culture, people, architecture and art found in Gujarat is to be seen to be believed.

Day 01: Ahmedabad:

Arrival by flight in Ahmedabad is followed by transfer to city hotel. While we keep the day free at leisure, we'll assist you in the late evening walking tour of the old city which will help you to appreciate the city-dwellers' culture of shared community spaces, inter-dependence and feasting together on street foods till very late at night.

Day 02 : Ahmedabad:

In the sightseeing tour of the city visit several beautiful monuments built in Indo Saracenic style, notable being the Sidi Saiyad Mosque. Other places worth going to is the old city once again, Friday Mosque, the river front and the bazaars. Also visit Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram. You may try a wholesome Gujarati thali lunch in a popular restaurant on this day.

Day 03: Ahmedabad:

Day to be spent in visiting one among the most exceptional textile museums known as Calico Museum. You may also visit some reputed non profit organizations who are involved in revival and marketing of Gujarat's several intricate textile arts. Close to the evening you may visit Adalaj Vav (One of the most beautiful and ornate stepwells of Gujarat). You may have dinner in ethnic ambience made complete with entertainment in the restaurant known as Visalla.

Day 04: Dasada:

Drive through exotic scenery of rural Gujarat and stop for some time at Siddhapur (for seeing rows and rows of largely abandoned ornate wooden houses of Muslim Bohra traders), Patan (to see the exceptionally ornate Rani Ki Vav stepwell and the difficult art of Patola silk weaving) and Modhera (for Solanki style masterpiece in form of ancient Sun Temple). After checking in visit the interesting village of Dasada and its residents who are experts in various arts.

Day 05: Dasada:

Little Rann of Kutchh Sanctuary: Spend the day to see what is one of the most striking landscapes on earth, the saline wilderness of the Little Rann of Kutchh. The Rann is the last home to highly endangered Asiatic Wild Ass. Take Jeep safari in the vast expanses of The Little Rann of Kutchh National Park to see the Asiatic Wild Ass that survives in severely harsh environment of Rann. The Park has a range of other wild animals and birds as well..

Day 06: Bhuj:

Drive through several interesting villages and towns famous for their excellent variety of handicrafts, textile prints and embroidery. We'll also stop at Wadhwan town for some time which is famous for its velvet Palace and tie & dye textile. Reach Bhuj – the heartland of unique landscape known as Kutchh peninsula.

Day 07: Bhuj:

Explore this wonderful remote town encircled by formidable walls. Bhuj has a maze of tightly packed winding lanes, palaces with incredible interiors and bustling colorful markets. Some of the palaces are partly damaged due to earthquake but painstaking efforts by curators in palaces like Aaina Mahal have helped bring back the glory. Visit the old palace with Mirror chambers, museums and chhatries

Day 08: Hodka near Bhuj:

Day to be used in driving through countryside, a unique geographical landscape of salty marshes, to visit a few villages and towns which are famous for their own highly evolved arts and crafts. Visit places like Nirona and Anjar and meet individuals/organizations involved in preservation of arts. Finally check in a unique environmentally low environmental impact resort located in a picture perfect rural setting.

Day 09: Gondal:

Driving out of the Kutchh region travel to Gondal which falls in Saurashtra region, a region that once comprised of several princely states. Close location to the sea and trade routes ensured that this region had a good mix of people of striking identities. On the way to Gondal you'll cross the town of Morbi which has a beautiful art-deco palace. Another place on the way will be Wankaner, a pleasant little town with a striking palace visible from miles away. The Royal palace, with museum-like collections, has a mix of several architectural styles of the world and is still inhabited by the royal family. Finally reach Gondal and stay in an atmospheric but modest palace. Gondal was a very progressive princely state with lenient taxation and compulsory education for girls.

Day 10: Junagarh excursion:

Take a daylong excursion to the very atmospheric city of Junagarh which has visually impressive historical relics related to many stages in history- from Ashokan era rock edicts to stunning old fort, astonishing looking stepwells, beautiful Girnar Hill summits, impressive Islamic style buildings and two very unusual yet charming tombs. The city itself has a very pleasant vintage feel. The Geeta lodge here is great for having Kathiawari Thali lunch with local people.

Day 11: Sasan Gir:

Drive southwards through Kathiawar Peninsula and reach Sasan Gir National Park. This National Park has a great success story to its credit in protecting the Asiatic Lion; with participation in conservation by local Maldhari (of African origins) and other tribal communities. Guided jeep safari in the afternoon. Rest of the time free at your discretion.

Day 12: Sasan Gir:

Take morning and afternoon guided jeep safaris through jungles of Gir. Sasan Gir National Park is last remaining home to Asiatic Lion species

Day 13: Diu:

Reach the fascinating little island of Diu, erstwhile Portuguese colony. Day to be spent in the relaxed atmosphere of Diu and its pristine beaches. Explore old Diu town as pillion rider on a scooter.

Day 14: Palitana:

Drive to Adpur and stay in a comfortable family run lodging. Day will be mostly kept free to feel fit for the hill climb the next morning.

Day 15: Velavadar Wildlife Sanctuary:

Early in the morning begin the climb of steps to the divine hill of Palitana. Ascending the Shatrunjaya Hill on foot you’ll find a group of 863 beautiful Jain temples. The high climb is a rewarding experience as the place has a strong spiritual atmosphere with fine views all around. On return back you'll be transferred to the Velavadar Wildlife Sanctuary. Stay in the well appointed jungle resort.

Day 16: Velavadar Wildlife Sanctuary:

Day to be used in visiting the wildlife sanctuary. The place is exceptionally good for seeing blackbucks, striped hyenas and many rare birds

Day 17: The tour ends:

You'll be provided transfer to Bhavnagar airport or Ahmedabad airport the day to help you take further connection. The tour ends.

Tour price per person tour cost on double/ Twin sharing basis: USD 3742

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