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Showing posts from January, 2019

Gujarat Diaries - 5

Overview: We had booked a safari at Devaliya Interpretation Zone at Gir at 9am. So we started from Diu at around 5:30am so that we could reach their on time. The distance from Diu to Sasan Gir is around 100kms so we kept a driving time of 3 hours and 30 mins buffer. We had some confusion on whether to book a 3 hour safari into the Gir forest or 1 hour safari to the Gir Interpretation Zone, where a smaller fenced area of Gir has been created so that more animals can be spotted. The decision proved good in the end after we spotted the Asiatic Lion, Jackal, Vultures, Wild Cat, Leopard and a few migratory birds. Spotting these animals in their natural habitat was a great experience early in the morning. It took around 1.5 hours from the safari starting point to return to the same place. The ticket cost is Rs 200 per head, and Rs 200 for camera. We had to pay an additional Rs 1900 for the gypsy.



From here, we headed to Junagadh, around 1.5 hours drive from here. We first saw the 3rd centu…

Gujarat Diaries - 4

Overview: The road from Dwarka to Somnath is a bit bumpy due to the highway expansion project happening on the stretch, we had to face some trouble with the dust and smoke from the bigger vehicles today. Starting off early as usual, we reached Porbandar at around 8am, the sun was just emerging out of fog along with the song of the birds. We visited the Sudama temple in Porbandar dedicated to the friendship between Sudama and Lord Krishna. We also got the special 'Chivda' as prasadam as it was Lord Krishna's favourite.



From here, we went to Bhalka Tirth on the outskirts of the town of Somnath. This is believed to be the place where Lord Krishna was hit by a hunter named Jara resulting in the end of Krishna's era.


From Bhalka, Somnath is around 5 kms. There is a parking lot outside the temple complex, and no electronic devices are allowed inside the temple. The Somnath temple is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas, and stands on the shore of Arabian sea. This temple has the hist…

Gujarat Diaries -3

Overview: Started the day early with a visit to the Narara Marine Park near Jamnagar. We didn't have much info about this place, but still headed out hoping for some surprises. We reached the place at around 7:30am, but the ticket counter didn't open until 8:15am. We took the tickets and there were some guides also to be hired for Rs 300. We decided to explore the place on our own. We followed the path which other people were taking through some bushes and mangroves. Once the horizon expanded, we could see vast area of the Gulf of Kutch, with shallow waters and migratory birds flocking the waters. We walked for a km into the shallow waters, we could spot some corals, sea urchins and starfish. We turned back after spending an hour into the waters. This place is good to explore if we have plenty of time on hand.



From Narara we proceeded to Naganath Jyotirlinga temple, which is a part of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. The temple is a renovated structure and was not very crowded. A…

Gujarat Diaries - 2

Overview: Anticipating a long day ahead, we started a bit early from Ahmedabad. It was pitch dark outside at 5:15am when we checked out of our hotel and headed north towards Kutch.
Our main point of interest was the Harappan metropolis of Dholavira, which was around 7 hours drive from Ahmedabad. We stopped somewhere on the highway for breakfast. We couldn't get anything immediately, so we bought some fruits to fill our stomach. We passed through some salt producing units at Surajbari. At Shikarpur, we stopped at hotel Ajanta for a brunch. We munched on some Aaloo Parathas and some tea to keep us going.

At around 11:30 am, we reached Rapar, the last major village on the way to Dholavira. After around 30 minutes of drive, we passed through Khadir Bet road, which bisects the Rann of Kutch. We stopped for a photo session, with vast desert of salt on the either side, and the other end could not be seen for miles. This geological wonder is a treat to the eyes, and not a soul could be se…

Gujarat Diaries - 1

Overview: I decided to end the year of travels 2018 on a trip to Gujarat. Since we don't often visit these states, we decided to make the most of it and visit as many places as possible. Keeping budget constraints in mind, we booked SL class train tickets to and from Bangalore.
On 21st December, we started from Bangalore by Garib Nawaz express, reaching Ahmedabad on the 23rd, making way through the villages and towns of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat. We reached Ahmedabad on 23rd morning at around 7am. We got the Zoomcar delivered at the railway station and we drove to our hotel where we checked in. We booked Zoomcar for 7 days and it cost us around Rs 30000 (fuel included).
Day 1 (Ahmedabad and around): After getting freshened up, we started towards Sabarmati Ashram, hoping for a restaurant to have breakfast. Unfortunately, all the restaurants we came across were either closed or were just opening. We realised later that Ahmedabad stays awake late at night and wakes up a bit l…