The Rann of Kutch is widely divided into two parts, little Kutch and Great Kutch. The Great Kutch is situated in the Thar Desert in Kutch district. This Indo-Pak border field is spread over 7,505 sq. km. Area. The White Desert is one of the largest salt deserts in the world. The place is also one of the best desert travel destinations in India.
Rann Utsav, by Gujarat government, starts from December and ends up in March. People from all over the country drop themselves there to enjoy handicrafts, food, local folk dance and music throughout 3 months. Kutch also has a heritage of handicrafts and architecture to witness. During Rann Utsav one can get such handicrafts, also they are widely available in local markets. The desert also has the Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary which is about 130 km away from Ahmedabad and well connected by road.
Visitors may also visit the Narayan Sarovar Sanctuary which is a lake named after Lord Vishnu. Narayan Sarovar has 5 in total sacred lakes and also you’ll find temples and wildlife to enjoy your weekend. One cannot miss the Aina Mahal in Maharao’s palace. The place shows heritage architecture from Kutch. Additionally, Kandla Port which is one of the top 11 ports in India is located at the Kandla Stream.
History and things to do in Kutch
The Rann of Kutch is accessible from the Kharaghoda village which is a part of the Surendranagar district. During the monsoons the desert develops mudflats and salty clar averaging over 15 meters above sea levels. Going back to the historic times, this village was a vast shallow of Arabian Sea which later got disconnected from the sea due to continuous geological uplift. Ghaggar River which presently empties in the northern part of Rajasthan used to be present uptil the Rann of Kutch till the lower reaches of the river dried up. In the year 2000, Geological Survey of India were able to find traces of this delta and the distributary channels within the northern boundary of Rann of Kutch.
Where is it located?
Kharaghoda village that is a part of Surendranagar district is the entry point for travellers. The nearest airport is at Bhuj from where you can take taxi or bus to reach in White Desert. One may also get down at Bhuj station if travelling by a train.
Ideal Visiting Time
The temperature during April-May reaches the maximum in day time there. The best time to visit the desert from December to March. From October the Rann starts to dry. One of the greatest sights that can be seen at this desert is the unexplained strange dancing light phenomenon that occurs during the night and is termed as Chir Batti or ghost lights. It occurs in the adjoining areas of Banni grasslands and seasonal wetlands.