The Rann of Kutch is an oasis in an otherwise deserted village of Dhordo, 85 kms away from Bhuj. This barely traceable village is host to the Rann Utsav, a festival that celebrates the arts, culture and beauty of Gujarat under one roof. Perched on arid, barren and cracked land, the Rann Utsav’s tent city is speckled with colourful stalls and beautiful tents.
Every year 10,000 tourists walk the fest from all over the globe. The silver sand is the most beautiful backdrop to Indian tincture in handicrafts, cultural shows and rows of food. But, that’s not all. Here’s all that you can expect out of Rann Utsav.
The Camel Cart Ride
Unless you want to tone your legs by sinking your feet in the sand every time you walk, a Camel cart is the best mode of transport at Rann Utsav. A 30-minute ride from the tent city takes you to a different world altogether. Something you have never seen before. Wrinkled, dry, parched and yearning for attention, this land laid unnoticed for decades. On first sight, it looks like snow. Step on it and you can feel it crunch under your feet. During monsoons, the Arabian Sea covers this flat land. As temperatures rise and summers beckon, the water recedes leaving behind salt marshes.
Sundowner at the White Desert
Over the infinite salt pan, a hot mass of vermilion orange sun sets; it’s a sight to behold! As the sun threatens to set by an endless ocean of white, the realm of salt lays bare as a chill sets in. Every month on the full moon night, the spectacular sight of the boundless white desert presents a stunning creation of nature, unique to this world.
Full Moon Night at the Rann
The white desert on a moonlit night, yet another dream come true. This is so mesmerising that I wouldn’t mind getting moon washed every single night. The best way to experience the White Rann is to stare into the moon, sit by yourself and take it all in. For just a few minutes of soaking in the pearl moon bobbing overhead a spotless whitescape extending before us, we can travel across the world.
How to get there
The Rann Utsav takes places at the Dhordo village, which is nearly 80 km from Bhuj in Kutch. Bhuj has its own airport, so you can fly down from metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Delhi or Bengaluru and drive down 80 km to get to Dhordo village.
Tourists require an entry permit for the Rann Utsav because of the Pakistani border nearby. It can be easily availed online for a meager fees. Alternatively, there is a checkpoint on the way by road at Bhirandiyara village, 55 km from Bhuj where it can be obtained. However, it opens after 11 am only during peak season.
Swiss Tents are available in 3 categories: Premium AC, Deluxe AC and Non-AC. The tents are comfortable with self-contained bathrooms. Packages are available in 1 night/2 days and 2 Nights/3 Days only, making it an ideal destination to visit over the weekend.
When is it
Rann Utsav, the festival of Joy, is happening from November 2019 to February 2020. Bookings need to be done asap.