Than Jagir, set at the foot of the volcanic hills of Dhinodhar (Kutch, Gujarat), is one of those places in India that leaves an indelible mysterious and magical impression on you. This hundred-year-old Hindu monastery is home to the order of Kanphatas, the intriguing “split-eared” tantric yogis.

Bordered by Pakistan and Rajasthan, Kutch is an ancient land that takes its name from its turtle-like geographical features (Kachchh in Gujarati). This region has developed its artistic richness by integrating the knowledge and traditions of the myriad of communities that have settled there since Antiquity: Rabari, Jats, Ahir, Meghwal, Sodhas, to name a few. …

Palitana is an incredible temple complex perched on Shatrunjaya Hill that seems to touch the sky. The 3500 steps that lead to them take you on an inner journey while giving you time to enjoy the beauty of the landscape.

Ahmedabad (“Ahmed’s City”), boasts a rich heritage from its past as a merchant city. The old town and its many pols or districts with their finely carved mansions (havelis) bear witness to its former wealth. Adding to the city’s aura are its memories of Mahatma Gandhi, who lived here when striving for India’s independence.

Vadodara, also known as Badora, is Gujarat’s third-largest town, a fast-growing industrial town but also a cultural capital. Although tourists come mainly for the magnificent Champaner-Pavagadh archaeology park nearby there are a number of sights worth stopping in town for.

The Rann of Kutch is one of the world’s largest salt deserts, a bright, white vastness interrupted only by touches of colour of visitors. As with all deserts, there is nothing in particular to see, just the beauty of infinity to admire… A sight absolutely not to be missed in Gujarat.

Traces of the 1956 and 2001 earthquakes are still evident but they cannot spoil the charm of Bhuj. This small town, once the capital of the Kutch region, is a great place to stop on the way to the famous ‘white desert’.

Uttarayan, the time of year when the sun starts its northward journey, is celebrated in Gujarat state with a kite festival that’s totally poetic. All day long thousands of multi-coloured kites drift endlessly across the sky, and when night falls the sky is lit by a myriad paper lanterns…

Modhera is a land of legend. It is said that after Lord Rama had vanquished the demon Ravana in Sri Lanka, he and his spouse Sita stopped here on their way home ; so it is not surprising that the Solanki sovereigns should have chosen this holy ground to build a magnificent and wholly unique …

If you pass by Udaipur, Rajasthan, you may like to make a short detour to Poshina, you will not regret it! The winding road that leads you to this authentic village of Gujarat crosses the Aravallis mountains, particularly enchanting after the monsoon, when the lush nature offers a colour palette of intense and fresh greens. What a …

Mandvi is a charming coastal town about sixty kilometers from Bhuj, the capital of the Kutch region in Gujarat. This is usually the last stop on the journey to Kutch. Travellers come here to have a relaxing break on its white sand beach before heading back to Ahmedabad. Mandvi was in the 18th century a …

Siddhpur “the pious” is a surprising town, on the banks of the Saraswati river. Its sacred atmosphere is rather reminiscent of Varanasi while the mansions of the Bohra merchants immerse you in the totally different atmosphere of Victorian era.

Saputara ‘the abode of snakes’ in the local language is a charming hill resort of Gujarat perched at 1000m altitude on the Sahyadri hills bordering the state of Maharashtra. It is surrounded by lush forests dotted with typical villages inhabited by the Dangs, a tribal community known for its impressive acrobatic dances. The best time …

Gujarat is a state in northwest India. On the north side it shares a border with Pakistan. Although not yet very popular with tourists, the region is not without attractions. There are pilgrimage centres like Palitana, Dwarka, Somnath, Siddhpur and Mount Girnar; there are archaeological sites at Champaner and Patan; and there is the Rann …

Nageshwar Temple, 12 miles to the northeast of the holy town of Dwarka, houses the “lord of cobras”, one of the 12 Jyotir Lingams or “lingams of light”. The temple is way out in the countryside but can be seen from afar, particularly the huge 82-foot Shiva statue that watches over it.

Dwarka is a peaceful sacred town beside the Oman Sea where it’s nice to just laze around, especially along the ghats at sundown when the shellfish vendors gather there. Dwarka tells you about Lord Krishna’s story who founded his kingdom here, and about the mystic poetess Meerabai who said to have spiritually united with him …

Mount Girnar is an undisputed must-see while you’re in Gujarat. Climbing the 9999 steps to its summit leaves an imperishable memory. The atmosphere is serene and friendly and the views are breathtaking.

The temple at Somnath houses the “Lord of the moon”, foremost of the twelve Jyotir Lingams or “lingams of light”. Somnath lies on the Gujarat coast at Veraval and attracts millions of pilgrims every year.

Diu is a charming small town on the coast, decked with blue-and-white fronted baroque churches, reminding us that a few hundred years ago Portuguese caravels moored nearby. Diu is a former Portuguese trading post on a small island (40km2 ) just off the west coast of the Gulf of Cambay. In 1535 Bahadur Shah, Sultan …

Mahuva is a small town by the Gulf of Khambhat, 95km from Bhavnagar. It is appreciated for its mild climate and lush vegetation in an otherwise semi-arid region. It’s off the beaten track and the perfect place for those is quest of intriguing little temples, unspoilt countryside and traditional rural life.

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