MAIN ATTRACTIONS OF GUJARAT:
Gujarat has always been a prominent state in the history of India. Right from the Stone Age man to the mythological Dwarka to today's fast becoming business oriented state of India; Gujarat has turned and witnessed many a pages of History.
With a vast coast line of the Arabian Sea and the unique history that Gujarat has, it surely attracts lot of visitors. Here seas meet sparkling sands, Lions and wild ass roam in jungles and marble temples and palaces reflect the past glory. With its world famous tasty cuisine, the beautiful handicrafts, the folkdances like the Garba, and more recent devastating earthquake, Gujarat has become the land of curiosity.
Till about 40 years back it was known as the state of Bombay. With the birth of Marathi state of Maharashtra, Gujarat lost Bombay and the Gujaratis built a planned city as their own new capital, aptly naming it as Gandhinagar. Presently Gujarat is better known as the state of entrepreneurs, the bustling state of business.
The Calico museum of Textiles:
One of the rarest museums and also the best in the world, was inaugurated by the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in 1948 at Ahmedabad. It is the finest museum of textiles and has one of the richest Collection of Indian textiles covering all regions of India. Exhibits include a wide range of embroidered shamianas, wall hangings, costumes, saris and embroideries. There are exhibits from historic era and the impression that the art and craft had during that period is quite evident. Various kinds and various designs of textiles ranging from the 12th century and even earlier leaves one spell bound.
The Step Wells:
A unique feature of the states of Gujarat s well as Rajasthan are these step wells. These wells near Ahmedabadare known as Vav in the local dialect and are the finest examples of Gujarati architecture. The main wells are reached through steps and all around them there are decoration of the columns, curved brackets and lintels, highly elaborate with repeated friezes and ornamentation of animal motifs and deities.These wells are cool even on the hottest of the days and make a good resting places and providing drinking water for the weary travelers.
Lothal, the mount of the dead, is the most important excavated sites in the recent. This place which hardly 90 kms from Ahemedabad, offers the view of neat structures those were built nearly 4000 years ago. One of the southernmost outposts of the Indus civilisation, and certainly one of the most interesting of Harrapan town planning, Lothal is the unique lock gated dockyard and perhaps the greatest maritime architecture of the ancient world.
A trip to Lothal gives an insight of the superb planning of the Harrapans who probably arrive here nearly 2500 years ago and of the people who lived nearly 4500 years back without the use of any technical device.
The Little Rann of Kutch is the most exciting place and probably comprising the largest wild lefe sanctuary in India. It is most famous for the extinct specie of the wild Ass, the last of India's wild horse family which does not survive elsewhere in Indian lowlands. The 4950 sq ft in area houses a range of habitats from saline desert plains to arid grasslands and from rocky and thorn scrub to lakes and marshes. Along with the galloping herds of handsome chestnut brown wild Ass, the sanctuary houses a thriving population of gazelle, blue bull, wolf, and Indian foxes. Birds like the bustard, spotted Indian sand grouse, desert wheatear, species of eagles and vultures along with the beautiful flamingoes, pelicans, ducks, cranes and storks frequent this sanctuary.
At Raiyoli, near Balasinore, is one of the 3 largest dinosaur sitesin the world. Around 86 kms from Ahemedabad, experts believe Balasinore to be a major hatchery for dinosaurs nearly 65 million years ago.
The dwelling of the King of Animals, the majestic lions is what Sasan Gir is famous for. The Gir National park, located at an hours distance from Junagadh is the last refuge of the Asiatic lion on Earth. It is Spread over 2450 hectares, and offers visitors the best in flora and fauna.
The actual birth town of Mahatma Gandhi, Porbandar is situated at the end of Saurashtra. Nearly 130 kms from Rajkot, the small town is a beautiful seaport on the Arabian Sea. Known as the white city for the houses build in white stone, Porbandar has a 79 feet high imposing building to commemorate the birth of Gandhi.