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Gujarat emerging tourism
The commercial hub of India, Gujarat excels in everything. Well almost since it is lagging behind in tourism. The potential lay hidden until the Government decided to change the scene. Mr. Amitabh Bachaan was appointed as brand ambassador to highlight the states wonderful destinations.
Gujarat is a dry state where liquor consumption is prohibited, hence fun makers have not made it as a popular destination. Very fond of travel people from this state visit many places in India as well as the World. The spate of effective advertisement on TV coaxed the people to look within the state. The successful campaign has attracted tourist from all over India as well. Ahmadabad the Capital City is well connected by air within India and Internationally. Lying on the West Coast of India the state known more for its industries and its industrious people.
The state boasts of many interesting places, a rich vibrant culture and an ancient history. In spite of rapid industrialisation tourism is making long strides as new places are discovered and developed.
Gujarat Beach Photo
State Tourism Initiative
The Tourism infrastructure is being maintained and supported by a board. Known as TCGL or Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Limited the Government Organization is active in providing accommodation and transportation.
Through its website and social media TCGL promotes tourism in the State. It is also active on organizing various events for the cause. The broad has many offices within and outside the State.
TCGL owns accommodation at many popular tourist destinations in Gujarat State of India. These accommodations offer budget as well as luxury accommodation and fine dining.
Beaches & Coastline
The state has a long coastline with many popular beaches. Some of the beach resorts in Gujarat are:
- Mandvi at Kutch
- Beach at Somnath Temple
- Nargol at Surat Town
- Myani Beach Porbandar
The long coastline is the best resource for the state. Besides many beach resorts, the commercial benefits of the long shoreline enrich the state developmental activities. Industries like ship breaking, fishing, tourism, shipping offer lively hood to the people. To increase the share of coastal tourism Gujarat Government has allocated large sum of money. This special grant has been aimed at many projects that will be instrumental in popularising the ten beaches.
Gujarat Beach Video
Places and Fairs
There are many destinations for spiritual tourism such as Somnath Temple, Dwarka, Ambaji, Dakor, and Bet Dwaraka. Palitana is a major religious centres for Jains with many temples of Svetambara and Digambar communities. These temples exhibit exquisite beauty and fine carvings. The state is visited by thousands of people every year on pilgrimage.
Somnath is a historical temple where the statue of Hindu deity called Lord Shiva resides. The temple was plundered nth number of times by the Moghul invaders but still stands proud and erect today.
Dwarka on Arabian Sea is the abode of Lord Krishna. It is one of the popular pilgrimage centre for Hindus. Dwarkadeesh Temple is most visited in this destination. It is declared as World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The state has major archaeological finds at Golo Dhoro, Lothal and Dholavira. The findings date to ancient Indus valley civilisation.
Many fairs and festivals are held in Gujarat and are well known for their colour and gaiety. Ras Garba is a popular dance festival organised during the Navratri. The participation comprises of all rank and files. This is the biggest festival besides Diwali and Holi. The kite flying festival held around 14th if January is called Utarayana. People all over the state indulge in kite flying in festive mood. The sky is lit with an amazing melange of colours in day time as kites soar upwards one after another.
Other festivals are Bhavanath Mahadev Fair held during Maha Shivarathri at Jungadh. Tarnetra Fair in Surendra Nagar District of Gujarat is also known as Trinetreshwar Mahadev Mela. This is also a marriage destination for tribal communities.
Other fairs worth a visit Vautha Fair, Fair at Dang Durbar, Chitra Vichitra, Dhrang Fair and Shamlaji Fair.
The river front project in Gujarat has been very successful all along the Sabarmati River which was inundated by overflow from Narmada Dam at near Navgaon. This acts as local hub of tourism for Gujarati as well as outside visitors.
There are many five star resorts that offer accommodation in the state. These are very popular with the holiday makers businessmen and inbound tourists. These resorts are also popular for destination weddings. These are favoured as venues for high profile or celebrity weddings in India.
Adalaj Step Well Ahmadabad
Wildlife of Gujarat
Gujarat has some of the most enchanting and rare wildlife. One of the rare animals is the Asiatic Lion found only at Gir National Park. The Asiatic Wild Ass found in the Rann of Kutch is also a rare animals. Indian Wolf, Jackal, Caracal, Lion are all rare animals in India.
Major Sanctuaries and National Parks are:
- Velavadar Wildlife Sanctuary
- Gir National Park
- Vansda National Park
- Kutch Bustard Sanctuary
- Porbandar Bird Sanctuary
- Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary
- Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary
- Balaram Ambaji Wildlife Sanctuary
- Wild Ass Sanctuary at Surendra Nagar
- Gaga Wildlife Sanctuary
- Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary
- Barda Wildlife Sanctuary
- Khijadia Bird Sanctuary
- Jambuhoda Wildlife Sanctuary
- Pania Wildlife Sanctuary
- Ratanmahal Sloth Bear Sanctuary
- Marine Sanctuary Pirotan
- Purna Wildlife Sanctuary
- Rampara Wildlife Sanctuary
Of these protected areas in state the Little Rann of Kutch, Velavadar and Gir National Park are most visited. Gujarat has become a choice destination of birding. Many birding watching tours are organised here every year. The Rann is home to flaminos, bustards, pelicans and many rare birds besides Asiatic Wild Ass. Black Buck and Lesser Florican in found in Velavadar. Many small sanctuaries hold lesser known mammals and birds of India.
Lion at Gir
State Tourism Link
Gir National Park
Gir National Park in Gujarat is situated near Junagarh Town near the coast. The protected area comprises of 257 sq km of National Park and 1100 plus sq.km of Wildlife Sanctuary.This is the only abode of Asiatic Lions in India About more than four hundred lions survive hear along with other wild animals that constitutes their prey base.
Other mammals & reptiles found at Gir are Panther, Sloth Bear,Nil Gai, Chinkara, Spotted Deer, Black Buck, Jungle Cat, Hyena, Wolf, Desert Cat, Wild Boar, Four Horned Deer, Rusty Spotted Cat, Sambar Deer, Ratel, Jackal, Fox, Porcupine, Civet, Marsh Crocodile, Tortoise, Monitor Lizard, Mongoose, Cobra, Python, Viper, Krait, and many other types of snakes.
The bird life includes many migrants as well. Some of the prime species seen here are:
- Asian Paradise Flycather
- Black Naped Monarch
- Indian Pitta
- Bonelli's Eagle
- Greater Spotted Eagle
- Indian Spotted Eagle
- Crested Hawk Eagle
- Crested Serpent Eagle
- Honey Buzzard
- Malabar whistling thrush
- Orange Headed Ground Thrush,
- Tawny Eagle
- King Vulture
- Painted Storks
There are around three hundred species of birds in Gir National Park making it the finest birding destination in India.
Birds of Gir
Saputara lies in the last leg of western Ghats in Dang District of Gujarat. The forest clad hilly area is much preferred by tourists from the state for short holidays. The destination is rich in biodiversity albeit lot of forest destruction has taken place.
Places of Interest
- Sun Set Point
- Hatgad Fort :
- Rose Garden:
- Artist Village :
- Vansda National park :
- Purna Sanctuary
- Sunrise Point:
- Gira falls
- Saputara Lake
- Step Garden
The Saputara hills are at a height of 1000 meters and hence contain a cool climate. The Gujarat Government is creating infrastructure for further development of the destination.
Brand Ambassador for Gujarat Tourism is Mr. Amitabh Bachhan. He is India's top actor and famous personality known Internationally.
© 2012 Uday Patel