One of the largest states in India, Gujarat is a popular tourist destination for people from all over the world. The enchanting scenic beauty, historical monuments, remnants of ancient civilizations, and picturesque beaches cast a spell that is hard to break. It is also one of the only places to have a glimpse of Asiatic lions, free from captivity and in their natural habitat, at Gir National Park. Apart from that travellers visiting Gujarat also get to enjoy the unique folk dances and absolutely lip-smacking dishes of the state, famed the world all over. There are several great places to visit in Gujarat, all of which are steeped in a certain charm and history.
The best time to visit Gujarat is from June to March, when the weather is pleasanter as compared to the summers, when humidity rules the roost in the state. It is very well connected to all major cities and towns of the country, as well as to other parts of the world through a couple of international airports.
Take a look at what places you shouldn’t give a miss when in the resplendent state of Gujarat.
The only natural habitat of the Asiatic Lions, Gir National Park is the best place to come face to face with them. Truly one of the best places to visit in Gujarat, Gir is also home to a variety of other rare wild animals, such as hyenas, fish owls, black bucks and many more. Spread across nearly 1412 sq km of land, this is also the only national park in India that has a community living inside its perimeters, and that too in complete harmony with each other. That eerie feeling of anticipation that you get, while riding the open top jeeps, looking for lions is unworldly, and a must do for whenever you are in Gujarat.
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Spot lions in their natural habitat at Gir national park, relax on the beautiful island of Diu, or go on a religious tour to Somnath and Dwarka. Book a memorable holiday to Gujarat inclusive of airport transfers, cab, resort, sightseeing, and meals on TravelTriangle.
2. Somnath Temple:
The next one on the list of famous places in Gujarat is a famous temple. One of the most sacred of the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, Somnath Temple is not just a religious site. Lying as it is on the shores of the rough Arabian Sea, the temple is also a thing of wonder. It has been destroyed and rebuilt countless times, once by Lord Soma in gold, once by Ravana in silver, once by Krishna in wood and once by King Bhimdev in stone. It is the stone edifice that stands tall now, and attracts millions of devotees to come over and seek the Lord’s blessings.
3. Rann of Kutch:
Rann of Kutch is probably the most beautiful thing you will ever lay eyes on. Nestled comfortably between the endless Thar Desert and the mighty Arabian Sea, Rann of Kutch is a mesmerizing wonder of sand and salt. On full moon nights, the desert shines bright as a diamond, and brings a surreal sense of calm with it. Cultural programs are held on full moon nights, tents are pitched and the wondrous land is yours for the night. Truly one of the most mesmerizingly beautiful places to see in Gujarat.
During winters, Rann of Kutch is home to the flamingoes, here all the way from Siberia! The white desert turns a delicate shade of pink, and brings with it the chance to enjoy proximity to these elusive birds and many others. But Rann Mahotsav is the best time to visit Gujarat, with Rann of Kutch coming alive with music, cultural shows, dances, food, camel safari and artisans flaunting their ware.
During the monsoon season, it is entirely submerged in water and visitors might return home dejected.
The largest city in Gujarat, Ahmedabad is probably the first place you visit in the state, for a look at some of the best tourist places in Gujarat. It is a city steeped in culture and with a rich heritage, making it a must visit for people from all over the world. Notable attractions include the Akshardham Temple Complex, Sabarmati Ashram and Kankaria Lake. The International Kite Festival is a must see, if you arrive during this amazing one day fest. The sky swells up with kites, from gigantic to minuscule, from simple to the most complex and bizarre ones, and from the bland ones to the rainbow colored ones.
Also, Ahmedabad is probably the best place to enjoy a delicious Gujarati meal, full of all the Khakhra, Dhokla, fried chillies, and Fafda that you can find. Make is a short trip if you don’t have much time, and take a look at the best places to visit in 4 days in Gujarat.
Suggested Read: 15 Fascinating Tourist Places In Ahmedabad
The only “hill-station” in Gujarat, Sapatura comes as a breath of fresh air in the otherwise hot and humid clime of the state. Sprawled beautifully on a densely forested plateau, Saputara is a hot new tourist destination, with a gigantic lake surrounded by resorts. It doesn’t get very cold there, but monsoons can be the best time to visit when the mist rises out of the lake and covers the nearby area. Attractions in Saputara include a boat club, an artisan village, a tribal museum, cable car and a couple of others. One of the perfect places to visit in Gujarat if you are looking to relax for a little while on an otherwise hectic trip.
6. Laxmi Vilas Palace, Vadodara:
Back when Laxmi Vilas Palace was built by Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III, it was the largest private dwelling unit in the world. Does that give an idea of its size? The palace compound covers an area of more than 700 acres, and houses several other buildings such as the Maharaja Fateh Singh Museum and the Moti Baug Palace. What is worth a look, when not being awed by the sheer opulence of the place, is the collection of sculptures and armory in marble, terracotta and bronze that are strewn across the palace. Although it is still the residence of the royal family of Vadodara, it is open to the public for visits and is one of the most famous tourist places in Gujarat.
Dwarka is one of the famed and highly revered “Char Dham” Hindu pilgrimages. It is considered to be the ancient kingdom of Lord Krishna, and also the very first capital of the state of Gujarat. Perched on the mouth of River Gomti on the Arabian Sea, Dwarka is a holy pilgrimage for Hindus from all over the world.
The beach running alongside the temple is a serene one, with the shallow waters being a great place to catch a glimpse of sea turtles, sea urchins, octopuses, and starfish. Try to schedule a visit during the Krishna Janamashtami festival, which witness the temple decked with garlands of flowers and fairy lights.
Also Read: Char Dham Yatra: A Quest For Moksha
8. Rani ki Vav, Patan:
Rani ki Vav is one of those rare UNESCO World Heritage Site that was built by a queen in memory of her king! Sort of like Taj Mahal, in reverse and one of the best places to visit in Gujarat. It is an ancient step-well, from the early 11th century, which was constructed by Udayamati in memory of Bhimdev I. With stairs that can take you down seven levels, it is home to more than 1,500 sculptures. The best part about it is that it has been discovered fairly recently, since the River Saraswati had flooded it in the earlier years, and it is only now that it has been excavated and become a popular tourist spot.
If you are an ancient history buff then a visit to Lothal would be right up your alley! Lothal is considered to be one of the most important sites of the Indus Valley Civilization, and is also one of the most well preserved ones. There is also a small museum here, which is home to relics of an era gone by, including cooking utensils, jewelry, apparels, gemstones and scrolls, for an in-depth insight into the lives of our ancestors.
Don’t forget to take a look at the most remarkable features, which includes the well planned dockyard and the market area. One of the most historical places of Gujarat, for sure!
Bhuj is also a major tourist attraction of Gujarat. The city can trace its roots back to the early 16th century, when it was an independent state. The city is famed for being home to ancient monuments, such as the Cenotaphs Complex that houses tombs of the royal family. Other places of interest in Bhuj include the Prag Mahal, a magnificent palace, and the Aina Mahal Palace, a marvelous creation with the interiors covered in mirrors.
The Kutch Museum is also worth a visit, as well as Hamirsar Lake. An ancient Shiva Temple in Kera is another place to visit in Bhuj.
If you are planning a trip to Gujarat, then the above mentioned attractions are a must visit. Do you think we missed out on a few places that deserve to be on the list of best places to visit in Gujarat? Let us know in the comments below!
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