India West In the Land of the GujjarsBook this Package
In the Land of the Gujjars (Mumbai (Arrival) – Bhuj – Wankaner – Bhavnagar – Palitana – Bhavnagar – Ahmedabad – Patan – Ahmedabad – Mumbai (Departure))
Duration: 11 days and 10 nights
Description: Gujarat features in the exploits of the great Buddhist Emperor Ashoka and has the distinction of being an early point of contact with the west, as the first British commercial outpost was established at Surat. Gujarat also had ties with the life of Mahatma Gandhi.
Day 01: Arrive Mumbai
On arrival pick up and transfer to the hotel. City tour of Mumbai covering the Hanging Gardens, Prince of Wales Museum, Gateway of India, Marine Drive and the Flora Fountain.
The Hanging Gardens
The Hanging Gardens, Mumbai, is also known as Pherozeshah Mehta Gardens. They are terraced gardens perched at the top of Malabar Hill, on its western side, just opposite the Kamala Nehru Park. They provide sunset views over the Arabian Sea and feature numerous hedges carved into the shapes of animals. The park was laid out in 1881 over Bombay’s main reservoir, some say to cover the water from the potentially contaminating activity of the nearby Towers of Silence.
Prince of Wales Museum
The Prince of Wales Museum of Western India is the main museum in Mumbai; formerly Bombay. It was founded in the early years of the 20th century by prominent citizens of Bombay, with the help of the government, to commemorate the visit of the then Prince of Wales. It is located in the heart of South Mumbai near the Gateway of India. The museum was renamed in the 1990s or early 2000s after Shivaji, the founder of Maratha Empire.
The museum building is built in the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture, incorporating elements of other styles of architecture like the Mughal, Maratha and Jain. The museum building is surrounded by a garden of palm trees and formal flower beds.
Gateway of India
The Gateway of India is a monument built during the British Raj in Mumbai (formerly Bombay), India. Located on the waterfront in the Apollo Bunder area in South Mumbai, the monument overlooks the Arabian Sea. The gateway is a basalt arch, 26 meters (85 feet) high. It lies at the end of Chhatrapati Shivaji Marg at the water’s edge in the harbor of Bombay. Previously, it was a crude jetty used by the fishing community, which was later renovated and used as a landing place for British governors and other prominent people. In earlier times, the gateway was the monument that visitors arriving by boat would have first seen in Mumbai. The gateway has also been referred to as the Taj Mahal of Mumbai, and is the city’s top tourist attraction.
Marine Drive is a 3-kilometre-long boulevard in South Mumbai in the city of Mumbai. It is a ‘C’-shaped six-lane concrete road along the coast, which is a natural bay. The road links Nariman Point to Babulnath and Malabar Hill. Marine Drive is situated over reclaimed land facing west-south-west. The bay is part of the Arabian Sea.
Flora Fountain, at the Hutatma Chowk (Martyr’s Square), is an ornamentally and exquisitely sculpted architectural heritage monument located at the southern end of the historic Dadabhai Naoroji Road, called the Mile Long Road, at the Fort business district in the heart of South Mumbai, Mumbai, India. Flora Fountain, built in 1864, is a fusion of water, architecture and sculpture, and depicts the Roman goddess Flora. It was built at a total cost of Rs. 47,000, or 9000 pounds sterling, a princely sum in those days.
Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 02: Mumbai – Bhuj
After breakfast drive to airport to board flight for Bhuj. On arrival pick up and transfer to the hotel. Later, a walking tour of the local bazaars. Bhuj connects you to a range of civilizations and important events in South Asian history through prehistoric archaeological finds, remnants of the Indus Valley Civilization (Harappans), places associated with the Mahabharata and Alexander the Great’s march into India and tombs, palaces and other buildings from the rule of the Naga chiefs, the Jadeja Rajputs, the Gujarat Sultans and the British Raj. Over the 4000-year inhabitation of Kutch, it developed trading and migratory relationships with ancient civilizations as far abroad as Zanzibar, the Middle East and Greece, fostering a unique ethnic mix of peoples and traditions in the region. Overnight stay at the hotel.
After breakfast go for a sightseeing tour of Bhuj city covering the Aina Mahal (Glass Palace), the Kutch Museum, and the Bharatiya Sanskruti Darshan Complex.
Aina Mahal (Glass Palace)
Aina Mahal is an 18th-century palace in Bhuj, Gujarat, India. It is located next to the Prag Mahal. It was built by Rao Lakhpatji in the mid-18th century. The chief architect was Ram Singh Malam. The palace was totally destroyed in 2001 Gujarat Earthquake. However, a portion of the palace which was not so badly damaged has been restored and it houses the museum, displaying the bed room, music room, court room and other old pieces of arts, paintings, arms, palanquin etc.
Renowned as Gujarat’s oldest museum, the Kutch Museum in Bhuj, houses one of the largest existing collections of Kshatrapa inscriptions dating back to the 1st century AD along with some samples of the extinct Kutchi script. The museum was founded by Maharao Khengarji in the year 1877 and has some fascinating collection of coins including the local currency of Kutch — kori. In addition to a section that is exclusively dedicated to tribal cultures with various specimens of ancient artifacts, folk arts and crafts and some information on the tribal people. Other than these, the museum also has on display specimens of embroidered clothes, paintings, arms and ammunitions, musical instruments, sculptures and other precious metal work.
Bharatiya Sanskriti Darshan
Bharatiya Sanskriti Darshan (also known as the Folk museum) in Bhuj is a prominent Kutchi cultural center and museum situated towards the south of College Road near the Collector’s Office. It houses a marvelous range of Kutchi folk art and crafts, particularly the ones belonging to the countryside regions of Kutch district, which are garnered with earnest efforts of an official forest representative during his tour around while executing government duties. The central area of the museum has exhibits of rural architecture among beautiful paintings and quality textile arts laced with archaeological specimens.
Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 04: Bhuj – Wankaner
After breakfast drive to Wankaner. On arrival pick up and transfer to the hotel. Later go for a city tour and visit the Palace of Wankaner.
Palace of Wankaner
Palace of Wankaner was built by Maharana Raj Shri Amarsinghji. Maharana Raj Shri Amarsinghji was the last ruler of Wankaner, who is also said to have designed the palace. The Palace of Wankaner is a grand building that is three stories high. Situated in the Gadhio hills, Palace of Wankaner is one of the marvelous buildings of Gujarat that is known for its beautiful arches and minarets with domes. The clock tower of the palace also adds to the charm of the palace. Besides, the Palace of Wankaner has a private museum that is famous for its collection of hunting trophies and royal artifacts.
Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 05:Wankaner – Bhavnagar
After breakfast drive to Bhavnagar. On arrival pick up and drop at the hotel. Later take a half day visit to the local market in Bhavnagar.
Bhavnagar is a city in the Indian state of Gujarat. Founded in 1723 by Bhavsinhji Gohil (1703–1764), the city was named after its founder and ruler. It has been the capital of Bhavnagar State, which was a princely state before it was merged into the Indian Union in 1948. It is now the administrative center of the Bhavnagar district. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 06: Bhavnagar – Palitana -Bhavnagar
After breakfast drive to Palitana. Later take a day trip to Palitana to visit 863 Jain temples atop Shatrunjaya Hills. The Palitana Temples of Jainism on Mount Satrunjaya, Palitana, and Gujarat are considered the holiest of all pilgrimage places by the Svetambara Jain community. There are 863 temples exquisitely carved in marble located on the hills. This temple-city has been built as an abode for the divine; hence, no one is allowed to stay overnight, including the priests. The main temple, on top of the hill, is dedicated to the first Tirthankara, Rishabha. Later return back to Bhavnagar. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 07: Bhavnagar – Ahmedabad
After breakfast drive to Ahmedabad. On arrival pick up and transfer to the hotel. Rest of the day is free for leisure. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 08: Ahmedabad
After breakfast sightseeing tour of Ahmedabad covering the Adalaj step Well, Gandhi Ashram, Calico Textiles Museum and Hasthisingh Jain Temple.
Adalaj step well Adalaj Stepwell is a unique Hindu ‘water building’ in the village of Adalaj, close to Ahmedabad town in Gandhinagar district in the Indian state of Gujarat. The stepwell was built in 1499 by Muslim king Mohammed Begda for Queen Rani Roopba, wife of Veer Singh, the Vaghela chieftain. The step well or ‘Vav’, as it is called in Gujarati, is intricately carved and is five stories in depth. Such step wells were once integral to the semi-arid regions of Gujarat as they provided basic water needs for drinking, washing and bathing. These wells were also venues for colorful festivals and sacred rituals.
Sabarmati Ashram (also known as Gandhi Ashram, Harijan Ashram, or Satyagraha Ashram) is located in the Sabarmati suburb of Ahmedabad adjoining to famous Ashram Road, at the bank of River Sabarmati, 4 miles from the town hall. This was one of the residences of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhi spent approximately 12 years of his life here. This ashram is now a national monument established by the Government of India due to its significance for the Indian independence movement in the form of the Dandi March in 1930.
Calico Textiles Museum
The Calico Museum of Textiles is located in the city of Ahmedabad in the state of Gujarat in western India. The museum is managed by the Sarabhai Foundation and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ahmedabad. The museum was founded in 1949 by the industrialist Gautam Sarabhai and his sister Gira Sarabhai. Ahmedabad at that time had a flourishing textile industry. The museum was originally housed at the Calico Mills in the heart of the textile industry. But as the collection grew the museum was shifted to the Sarabhai House in Shahibaug.
Hasthisingh Jain Temple
Built in the year 1850 AD, the Hathee Singh Temple is dedicated to the 15th Theerthankara of Jains, Dharmnath. This temple is named after Sri Hathee Singh, a rich Jain merchant of yesteryears, who had undertaken the great task of such an amazing construction. Famed for its brilliant structural designs, this two-storied white marble structure provides a delightful experience to the beholder. Elaborate porches on three sides are a specialty of this temple. A lovely dome on the front porch gives a peculiar appeal to this architectural splendor. Other two porches displays prolifically carved patterns. Another unique aspect of the temple is its tiled courtyard, which is encircled by daunting row of pergolas with 52 shrines.
Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 09: Ahmedabad – Patan – Ahmedabad
After breakfast drive to Patan. Go for an excursion to the cities of Patan and Siddhpur. Patan was a capital of Gujarat in medieval times. It is the administrative seat of Patan District in the Indian state of Gujarat and administered by municipality. The city contains many Hindu and Jain temples as well as few mosques, dargahs and rojas. The city has many historical places also. Sidhpur is a sacred town, around 103 kms north of Ahmedabad. It is situated on the left bank of the River Saraswati, around 24 kms upstream of Anhilwad Patan, the old capital of Gujarat before Ahmedabad was founded in the first quarter of the fifteenth century. The town is a revered destination, flanked by temples, kunds, ashrams and other sacred structures. Around the 10th century, under the Solanki rulers, this town was at the pinnacle of prominence and glory. It derived its name from the great ruler of Gujarat, Siddhraj Jaisinh from the Solanki dynasty.
Overnight stay at the hotel
Day 10: Ahmedabad – Mumbai
After breakfast transfer to Ahmedabad airport to board flight for Mumbai. On arrival pick up and transfer to the hotel. Rest of the day is free for leisure.
Overnight stay at the hotel
Day 11: Leave Mumbai
After breakfast drive to Mumbai airport for further journey.