Gujarat Highlights

At a Glance

MUMBAI – AHMEDABAD – DASADA – BHUJ – BANNI & KUTCH – BHUJ & MANDVI – GONDAL – GIR NP – PALITANA – BHAVNAGAR – VADODARA – MUMBAI

Gujarat is a colorful and vibrant state, the people here are very hospitable and are known for their enterprising and resourceful nature. Though the journey kick-starts at Mumbai, you get the first glimpse of Gujarat at Ahmedabad, situated at the famous river Sabarmati. Named after Sultan Ahmed Shah, was once also called the Manchester of India for the business potential.

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The main attraction is any day the Gandhi Ashram, the home of Mahatma Gandhi. The following two days take you to Dasada, on the edge of the arid Rann of Kutch. This is a great getaway offering relaxation in eco-friendly resorts and ethnic huts. You are also introduced to the royal palaces and its grandeur at Bhuj and more at Gondal, very much dipped in traditions and heritage.

After a variety of adventure, history and culture it is time for the naturalist to take you forward from here. Sasan Gir, the only home to the Asiatic lions, is waiting! Dawn and dusk is the right time to spot this elusive beast. Here and in the nearby Nalsarover Lake one can spot a variety of birds, gazelle, antelopes, etc. Diu is a beautiful extension of the great Kathiawad zone, and Bhavnagar are two great destinations to get a glimpse of royal Gujarat again. Don’t forget to visit the Piram turtle breeding farms and the frescoes of Bhavnagar.

Highlights, though, the tour is a unique chance to feel yet another cultural tapestry in the western part of India.

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Starting from £3593.00

International flights & VIP meet at aircraft door included - more Special Value inclusions listed below

MAKE A RESERVATION

ASK A QUESTION

Tel: 0207 931 8273

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Freephone: 0800 1777 770

Special Value

  • A gift when you book your tour with us, a DVD film called ‘Mystic India.’
  • International flights included
  • VIP meet & greet at your aircraft door on arrival
  • A useful gift is given to you on arrival
  • Private arrival and departure transfers
  • Private car & driver for all road transfers
  • Snack Hamper, with juice and water in your private car
  • Mobile phone to use while in India to keep in contact with our local office and your driver
  • Meals as per itinerary (B = breakfast) (HB = breakfast, lunch or dinner) (FB = breakfast, lunch & dinner)
  • Private guide for sightseeing in all major cities
  • Entrances to all monument and places of interest included
  • Walk the old lanes of Ahmedabad
  • Visit the Sun Temple in Modhera
  • Spot the wild Asses in Dasada
  • Visit the tribal villages in Kutch
  • See the exquisite textiles in Kutch
  • Visit Rajkot
  • Sightseeing of Junagarh
  • Jeep safaris in Sasan Gir National Park
  • Spot the Asian Lion in Sasan Gir NP
  • Witness the spectacular Palitana Jain Temple
  • Excursion to Lothal
  • Visit Vijay Palace in Vadodara

Our  Tour features the following locations

MUMBAI: Mumbai the city of dreams. One of the best and most cosmopolitan cities of Asia. The commercial lifeline of India. Home to Bollywood, the second largest film industry in the world. A place where some of the biggest slums share the area with sprawling metropolises. The epicentre for fashion and Indian wine. A trip to Mumbai is everything you’d expect from a major metropolis, yet so much more. It’s a humbling experience, to say the least. But it’s also fascinating, edgy and exciting. Those colonial-era relics, incredible bazaars, hidden wine cafes and enclaves of peace and serenity really do have a way of putting you at ease.

AHMEDABAD: Nicknamed Manchester of the East, this industrious city is a fascinating place for tourists looking for a mix of modernism and ancient tradition. The food served here is an absolute feast for the belly, and there’s just so much to choose from. The old city lies to the east of the Sabarmati River and is popular as a treasure trove of hidden relics and artefacts. The iconic Sabarmati Ashram, Mahatma Gandhi’s headquarters, is also located here. Try visiting Ahmedabad during the nine days of the Navratri festival or the Uttarayan kite flying festival, celebrations that are held with great pomp and joy throughout the city. Navaratri is especially beautiful for you to join people performing the folk dance Garba at countless venues across the city.

DASADA: Located right at the edge of the Little Rann of Kutch, Dasada is an immensely beautiful place, one that offers a fascinating getaway for nature lovers. There are several bird watching destinations close to Dasada, and you get to see a large number of lesser flamingos, common cranes and pelicans in the winter months. The village itself is exciting, presenting an authentic experience into rural India, showcasing the tribal heritage of Kutch at its stunning best. The star attraction of Dasada is the Wild Ass Sanctuary, the largest wildlife sanctuary in India which hosts the only surviving populations of the Asiatic-Indian wild ass. These asses are beautiful animals, their striking chestnut brown standing out, somewhat unusually given their reserved nature. Other sightings include the chinkara, desert fox, jackal, nilgai, Indian wolf, striped hyena and the blackbuck. The best time to visit the Wild Ass Sanctuary is between the months of October to November, right after the monsoon season, when the asses can be seen in large numbers grazing and playing in the open.

BHUJ: Bhuj has had a connection to India ever since the great Indus Valley Civilization flourished here. It played a huge role in Alexander the Great’s reign and emerged as a major Rajput kingdom before becoming the Gujrat Sultanate under the British. The best thing to do in Bhuj is to lose yourself in its architectural wonders. The Bell Tower of Prag Mahal, Sharad Baug Palace, Ramakund Stepwell, Aina Mahal, and Kshatrapa inscriptions dating back 2000 years are sure to keep you busy. Once you’re done exploring for the day, head over to the Harimsar Lake to watch the sun’s rays paint the water in a sea of colour. Bhuj is also considered to be the perfect place to stay while you explore the surrounding villages, discover fascinating Kachchh handicrafts and learn more about the country’s most famous love affair, the one between Radha and Lord Krishna.

BANNI: Beautiful circular houses made of thatched roofs and mud make you forget those chaotic scenes that engulf you the moment you step foot in the country. Time seems to stop at Banni. You’re immediately transported to another era, to a quaint little village, a living museum bathed in all sorts of colours and designs. Banni embroidery is sacred here, a skill that is used to create colourful, intricate designs on belts, bags, wallets, shoes, and purses. Considered to be the most outstanding embroidery design that India has to offer, this craft has literally been passed down from one generation to the next. While you’re lost in a sea of design, don’t forget to keep an eye out for exotic bird species that frequent the area. Popular sightings include several species of ducks, waders, bar-tailed godwits and common cranes.

RANN OF KUTCH: Mere words fail to do justice to the beauty that awaits you at the Great Rann of Kutch, the largest salt desert on the planet. Nowhere else will you come across such a vast stretch of land that turns into the most beautiful shades of white during the summer and winter seasons. There is hardly any trace of life here. No insects, nothing for miles, just a sea of white and the vast blue skies above. This endless expanse of salt is best seen under a full moon, for it treats you to a shimmery carpet of white, resembling tiny diamonds shining under the night sky. Beautiful villages dot this arid landscape presenting a maze of tribal communities who are responsible for creating some of the most exquisite mirrorwork, embroidery and handicrafts in the country. The best time to visit the Rann of Kutch is between the months of October to March.

MANDVI: A bustling little seaside town with a lovely long stretch of beach. The town has a long history of shipbuilding, and wooden ships are still built by hand down by the docks. It was once a major port of the region and summer retreat for the Maharao of the Kachchh. Locations to visit here would be Vijay Vilas Palace a Royal abode set in the middle of well-laid gardens with water channels and marble fountains. The architect and craftsmen from Jaipur designed and constructed the palace in 1920 AD. The palace has all the elements of Rajput architecture and draws largely on the plan of palaces of Orchha and Datia.

GONDAL: Gondal once served as the capital of a former princely state but is now a historic town known for its elaborate forts and palaces. The star attraction is the 17th century Navlakha Palace, a priceless work of art known for its grand architecture and stone carvings. The Grand Darbar Hall is one of the most beautiful features of the palace, known for its series of huge windows and carved brackets. Stunning balconies, glamorous spiral staircases, magnificent arches and a private museum are also sure to leave you mesmerised. Other attractions in town include the Riverside Palace, Orchard Palace and the Royal Garage, a private collection of vintage automobiles from 1910 to 1955.

SASAN GIR NP: Imagine a place whose sole objective is to ensure that the king of the jungle never gets dethroned. Established over an area of 1412 sq. kms., this national park is primarily dedicated to conserving the Asiatic lion, one of the most endangered species on the planet. Gir is the only place where lions exist (apart from Africa), and this attracts people from all over the world. After all, watching the beast on its own turf is an adrenaline rush like no other. The park also presents 606 plants, 36 mammal and 300 bird species to keep you entertained. Common sightings include leopard, jungle cats, hyena, bush quails, rusty spotted cats, sloth bears, jungle cats and crested eagles. The best time to see the lion is at dawn and dusk when it’s on the prowl for prey. Park officials also arrange lion shows each Sunday where one can see an entire pride of lions on the hunt.

PALITANA: Palitana, an important pilgrimage centre for the Jains, has more than 800 temples scattered over two summits, each temple boasting of sculptures and carvings that are a delight for the eyes. Built over a span of 900 years and dating all the way back to the 11th century, these temples are dedicated to the Jain Tirthankaras. The temple complex is divided into 9 wings, each housing the main temple and several minor temples built around it. The larger temples have towers, numerous openings, fortified walls and marble halls, and the interiors are full of lace designs and carved ceilings. Some of the most popular temples of Palitana include the Vimal Shah Temple, Adinath Temple, Samavasaran Temple and Narsinh Kesharji Temple. Getting to these temples isn’t easy, though. Pilgrims often climb as many as 3500 stairs to visit each temple, but you can opt for a simpler route that passes Angar Pir.

BHAVNAGAR: The port town of Bhavnagar was founded in 1723 and is still an important cotton export centre. I t was once one of the most affluent states of Saurashtra. Sights include the Gandhi Smriti library and museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. Nearby is the Gaurishankar lake, a popular picnic spot good for winter bird watching.

VADODARA: Vadodara (Baroda) was the capital of the princely Gaekwad state prior to Independence. Present-day Vadodara is a pleasant, medium-sized city with some interesting museums and art galleries and a fine park.  Kammati Bagh is beautiful. It is now a rapidly expanding industrial centre also. The City’s well-known Fine Arts College attracts students from around the country and abroad.  It is an institute of national renown. It’s a good place for a short pause. 

What our clients say

The village walk was fantastic a real rural experience. We were invited to a local wedding in one of the village communities, which appeared to be such a treat for the locals to have some foreigners attending. The walk was not too strenuous more a relaxing stroll through the valleys each day. We just loved meeting the community in each village and the dancers laid on for us on the last night were a real treat. Thank you for recommending this as a very different experience.

Valerie & Graham – London

Gujarat Highlights

Gujarat Highlights

DAY 01 – FLY TO MUMBAI
Fly to Mumbai.

DAY 02 – MUMBAI
Arrive, VIP meet at aircraft door, assistant through immigration control, then meet & greet at departures door then transfer to your hotel.

Rest of the day is at leisure to relax after your flight. Sightseeing can be arranged, see idea mentioned on Day 20

DAY 03 – FLIGHT TO AHMEDABAD
You will be transferred to Mumbai airport to board your flight for Ahmedabad

On arrival transfer to your hotel, you are then at leisure.

DAY 04 – AHMEDABAD (B)
You will take a private guided tour of Ahmedabad.

Visit Shreyas Folk Museum, Tribal Museum at-Tribal Research & Training, Hathesing Temple and Sabarmati Ashram

DAY 05 – AHMEDABAD TO DASADA (FB)
You will drive to Dasada (8hrs). En route visit Adalaj, Patan and Modhera.

Arrive Dasada and day is at leisure.

DAY 06 – DASADA (FB)
You will take morning safari of Wild Ass Sanctuary. Evening, you will visit local village

DAY 07 – DASADA TO BHUJ (B)
You will drive to Bhuj (7 hrs). On arrival at leisure

Bhuj, the major town of Kutch, is an old city established in 1510.With its surrounding wall, the atmospheric bazaar area, crenulated gateways, old palaces and striking temples the town still retains a medieval character. Every Feb/Mar it hosts the annual Rann Utsav festival.

Then at leisure to relax

DAY 08 – BHUJ TO BANNI VILLAGE (FB)
After breakfast, you will drive to Banni Village of Lodlya, Khavda, Bhirandiyara, Hodka & Dhorado) to see local tribes and their textiles. The next two nights offer you the experience of staying on one of the village style huts (A co-operative of the villages have produced traditional style huts but with en-suite facilities. Basic but comfortable).

DA7 09 – VISIT TO RANN OF KUTCH (FB)
After breakfast you will drive out to The Great Rann of Kutch is a seasonal salt marsh located in the Thar Desert in the Kutch District of Gujarat, India and the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is about 7,505.22 square kilometres (2,897.78 sq mi) in size and is reputed to be the largest salt desert in the world. This area has been inhabited by the Kutchi people.

DAY 10 – DRIVE TO BHUJ (B)
Today you will drive back to Bhuj for afternoon sightseeing tour Bhuj. Visit Aina Mahal Palace, Cenotaphs Complex and Kutch Museum

DAY 11 – VISIT TO MANDVI (B)
Today you will visit Mandvi, a picturesque coastal town with many old buildings. It was an important port of the Jadeja Rajputs, who claim descent from Lord Krishna. They are said to move to Sindh when Krishna’s capital, Dwarka, was submerged by the sea. Mandvi is known for its 400-year-old ship building centre. The local carpenters still make ocean going Dhows in much the same way that their ancestors had done a century ago.

DAY 12 – BHUJ TO GONDAL (B) DAY 08 – BHUJ (B)
After breakfast, you will continue your tour with a drive to Gondal (7.5 hrs). En route visit to Rajkot.

On arrival, you are then at leisure to relax after the drive.

DAY 13 – GONDAL TO SASANGIR (FB)
You will drive to Sasangir (5 hrs). En route visit to Junagarh. On arrival in Sasangir, you are then at leisure

DAY 14 – SASAN GIR NP (FB)
Morning jeep safari in the Park

Afternoon another jeep safari in the Gir National Park

DAY 15 – SASAN GIR NP TO PALITANA (B)

You will drive to Palitana (3 hrs). On arrival check-in at hotel

DAY 16 – PALITANA (B)
You will see Palitana Jain Temple located hillside is about 2-3 Kms up with 3950 steps.

This morning is your chance to climb to the top of Temple Hill the famous and see the many varieties or exquisite Palitana Temples. This can take the best part of half a day and is best achieved by starting early in the morning. Well worth the climb. You can take a human taxi to the top!!!! if you wish.

DAY 17 – PALITANA – BHAVNAGAR (B)
You will drive to Bhavnagar (1.5 hrs). Check-in at your hotel. Day at leisure

DAY 18 – BHAVNAGAR (B)
Morning excursion to Lothal (2.5 hrs) and back

DAY 19 – BHAVNAGAR – VADODARA (B)
You will drive to Vadodara (05 hrs). On arrival, you will take a tour of Laxmi Vilas Palace.

DAY 20 – VADODARA TO MUMBAI (B)
You will be transferred to Vadodara airport for flight to Mumbai. On arrival transfer to your hotel, then at leisure to explore on your own. 

Depending on your arrival time, sightseeing can be arranged at an extra cost. The following locations can be seen on a city tour, discuss with us what can be achieved based on time available.

The Gateway of India, Dhobi Ghat open air laundry, Victoria Terminus train station, Colaba Market, Marine Drive, Chowpatty Beach, The Regal Circle, Bombay University, The Oval Maidan cricket ground, Mani Bhavan the focal point of Gandhi’s political activities in Mumbai, The Town Hall, The Municipal Building.

Why not add on an extra night, so you have longer to see what Mumbai has to offer. A walking tour of the Dharavi slums made famous in the film ‘Slumdog Millionaire’, or you may like to see how the famous dabbawalas deliver up to 200,000 lunch boxes each day. Also take a morning or afternoon boat ride out to Elephanta Island to see the carved rock caves.

DAY 21 – MUMBAI HOMEBOUND OR ONWARDS (B)
Today India bids you farewell with your transfer to the International terminal.

Gujarat Highlights

Gujarat Highlights

Hotels

Our from price based on the following hotels twin/double share. Single supplement, triple share reductions or for alternative hotels, contact us to discuss your requirements further. We can design a tour just for you, based on your style and budget.


Gujarat Highlights

Gujarat Highlights

Extensions

Here are some examples of extensions you can add to this tour. For other ideas and to discuss your requirements contact us. We can design an itinerary for you, based on your dates, duration, style, and budget.


Between Sasan Gir and Palitana, detour to the island if Diu. Diu ruled by many well-known kings and dynasties during the prehistoric, ancient and medieval times. It was a Portuguese colony until 1961.

Mumbai, fly down to Goa for a longer beach stay to end your tour. Former Portuguese enclave of Goa, one of India’s gems, has been popular with tourists for many years with its magnificent palm-fringed beaches

From Ahmedabad drive to Dungapur, Rajasthan – Udai Bilas Palace. Nestled in idyllic splendor, with the blue waters of Gaibsagar lake on one side and a cove of private reserve forest on the other.

Once can also reach Mt Abu, in Rajasthan from Ahmedabad. Besides having all the features of a pleasant hill resort, Mount Abu is also a centre of pilgrimage for Jains on account of the famous Dilwara Temples.

Amnedabad via Dungapur then to Udaipur, good extension to your tour. Set amidst the Aravalli hills of south Rajasthan, Udaipur is a beautiful city regarded as one of the most romantic in India.

From Bhuj and before Gondal, stay a few nights in tents at Mandvi. The Beach at Mandavi Palace is a deluxe camp, comprising, 10 hand crafted tents. Each tent has its own verandah, spacious air-conditioned bedroom

Gujarat Highlights

Gujarat Highlights

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