Gujarat has everything to entice a tourist. This beautiful state located on the country’s western coast is blessed with diverse landscapes, scenic beauty, sand and surf, historical monuments and cultural vivacity, colorful craft traditions and mouthwatering cuisines, teeming wildlife and great hospitable people. Traveling to Gujarat is an experience in itself.
You’ll have so much to explore and so much to learn that you’ll be simply spoilt for choice while at Gujarat. The state is diverse in every way and opens up several avenues for you to gather diverse experiences. From being home to the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi and Lord Krishna to one of the largest national parks in India and being dotted with age old ancient temples, each nook and corner of Gujarat has a story to tell. The vibrancy of this state is one of a kind and the brilliance of it remains unmatched for. Along with being a pilgrimage centre, a spiritual hub and a traveler’s top choice Gujarat is a mosaic of various experiences. A visit here will have itself etched in the traveler’s memory for a long time till they visit back.
Here are some of the most popular tourist destinations in Gujarat that should never be missed out during a Gujarat tour. Most of the Gujarat tours commence from Delhi and a standard Gujarat tour package from Delhi will generally cover all of these places in its tour itinerary. Read on to learn more:
Gir National Park
Gir National Park in Gujarat’s Junagadh is one of the most famed wildlife sanctuaries of the country. The dense forests of Gir sprawling across an area of about 1412 sq kilometers is home to the majestic and very endangered lion species; the Asiatic lions. Apart from lions, Gir is an abode of many other exotic wild creatures.
Dwarka is a holy town in Gujarat’s Dwarka district and on the mouth of River Gomti. Dwarka had been the Kingdom of Lord Krishna in the Dwapar yug as per legends. The beautiful Dwarkadheesh temple enshrines the idol of Lord Krishna in his royal avatar or as king of Dwarka. This is one of the Chardhams of the Mahaparikrama Chardham circuit and is also one of the ‘Sapta Puris’ or seven holy cities of Hinduism.
The shore temple of Somnath is dedicated to Lord Someshwara; a manifestation of lord Shiva. Somnath temple enshrines one of the most revered Jyotirlingams of the lord. The temple exhibits the most marvelous form of ornate architecture. As per myths this temple was set up Som; the Moon God in honor of Lord Shiva who had freed him from a curse.
Laxmi Vilas Palace
This luxuriously palatial building was constructed by Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III and had been the largest of all private residences in the whole of the world. The compound of the palace sprawls across an area of about 700 acres. One will be taken aback by the sheer luxury and opulence of the palace. Expensive and ornate sculptures as well as armory crafted in bronze, marble and terracotta are exhibited everywhere within the palace and its compound. Till date Vadodara’s royal family dwells in this palace but still tourists are allowed to pay visits.
Bala Hanuman temple
Bala Hanuman temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman Ji is located in Jamnagar on Ranmal Lake’s south eastern bank. The temple finds a mention in Guinness Book of World Records for the incessant chanting of the Ram dhun. ‘Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram’ since the year 1964, 1st of August.
Rani ki vav
Rani ki vav is a famous step well located in Gujarat’s Patan town. This ornately built step well dates back to the 11th century and had been constructed by queen Udayamati in remembrance of her King Bhimdev I. The step well stands along the banks of River Saraswat and has been recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Site. The carvings inside the well are indeed an architectural masterpiece.
Rann of Kutch
This is a vast stretch of salt desert lying amid the Arabian Sea and the great Indian Thar desert. Sand has mingled with salt to result in the most wondrous gift of Nature- a shimmery, silvery, enormous stretch of salty marsh land that looks heavenly on a full moon night. Several cultural programs are organized on the Rann year round. The famed Rann Utsav is one of those.
Saputara is Gujarat’s only hill station exhibiting scenic vistas featuring pellucid lake, streams, densely forested slopes, view points, colorful gardens and lush greenery all around. Boating on the lake of Saputara, taking a cable car ride, visiting the Tribal museum are some of the top to-do things for tourists visiting Saputara. Saputara comes as a relaxing break for tourists and natives from the otherwise chaotic cities and hot and humid general climate of the state.