Palaces of Gujarat Tour 1

Palaces of Gujarat Tour

₹11999 /pax
7 days tour
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Palaces of Gujarat Tour

Day wise Itinerary
Day 1: Ahmedabad

Arrive AhmedDay 1: Ahmedabad

Arrive Ahmedabad, check inn at hotel and later we go for a sightseeing tour of Ahmedabad.

Sidi Sayed Mosque : One part of the wall in the old citadel of the mosque built by Ahmed Shah's slave, Sidi Sayed, is celebrated the world over for its exquisite stone window tracery - a superb and peerless example of delicate carving that transforms stone into filigree.

Jumma Masjid : The Friday mosque was built by the city's founder, Sultan Ahmed Shah, in 1423. Built of yellow sandstone in an architectural style that combines the best of Muslim and Hindu traditions. It stands on 260 pillars that support 15 domes at varying elevations.

Hutheesingh Jain Temple : Built outside the Delhi Gate in 1850 by a rich Jain merchant, the Hutheesing Temple is the best known of Ahmedabad's many ornate Jain temples.

Adalaj Step-well : It is situated 17kms north of Ahmedabad. The step well at the village of Adalaj is another fine example of this magnificent architectural form. Adalaj Vav is richly carved, every pillar and wall surface covered with leaves and flowers, birds and fishes and friezes of ornamental designs.

Dinner at Vishalla Restaurant.

Vishalla Restaurant - Talking of a restaurant usually brings to the mind a picture of a brightly lit, air-conditioned hall, with music playing in the background, and waiters waiting on us and jotting down our selections from the menu card. Can you imagine a place where there are no closed rooms or halls, lanterns used instead of heavy lighting, natural air replacing air-conditioned air, folk songs being sung without mikes, muddy lanes, homely food served on a tree leaf, and everything around resembling a typical Indian village.

Another distinguishing characteristic of the place is that you get to decide the menu and pay the bill at the reception itself. Selecting from the menu at your seat deprives you of the necessary relaxation. Paying the bill earlier on frees the mind from thinking about the expense. Well, if you haven't heard of any such place, come home to Vishalla. Vishalla is not only designed like a village; the staff accords to you the same, warm hospitality you would likely experience in an Indian village. As soon as you step in, you can let go of your worries. The atmosphere is imbued with a proximity to nature that relaxes the mind. There are no doors to be seen here - which emphasizes the focus on freeing the mind. The waiters and other staff are dressed in traditional Indian gear, with either a turban or a topi on their heads, dressed in the very typical dhoti-kurta. The interior design is certainly in a class of its own, proudly symbolizing Indian culture.

Vishalla prides itself on its presentation of Indian culture and tradition in its village-like environment with its museum of old utensils known as Vechaar. The museum found its way into Vishalla three years after Vishalla was itself started, on 27 April 1981. Vechaar is the only museum of its kind in the world, displaying such a precious collection of utensils. The designer of Vishalla, Mr. Patel, shares his success in the establishment of Vechaar with Mr. Jyontindra Jain, a well-known anthropologist. Mr. Jain fully supported and guided the cause and eventually helped in setting up the museum itself. His passion for the cause was so deep that his good work did not stop at that; he wrote catalogs for the museum himself.

A walk around the hut-like museum makes one's heart skip a beat, marveling at the inimitable beauty of these utensils of old. These utensils have been handed down through the changing seasons and times, over the years. They speak of the unmatched art and genius of humankind during the days of old when people did not have the modern facilities of our times. The designer could not let our rich heritage pass with these vessels being lost in the fire kilns! He was determined to preserve them, and today, his dream is a reality in the form of Vechaar.

The museum will be closed on Monday.

Overnight at HOUSE OF MG.

Meals : Dinner

Day 2: Ahmedabad - Lothal - Bhavnagar

Today we drive to Bhavnagar enroute visiting Lothal.

Lothal : A perfect place to get an insight of the Indus Valley civilization. The most dominating site at Lothal is the massive dockyard spanning an area of 37 meters by 22 meters perhaps the greatest work of Maritime Architecture. Lothal was also famous for its arterial streets, microbes of gold, ivory and coppersmiths' workshops, potteries and underground sanitary drainage. It is located at a distance of 78kms from Ahmedabad.


Day 3: Bhavnagar - Palitana - Gondal

Early morning we climb Shetrunjaya hills at Palitana and later in afternoon drive to Gondal.

The Riverside palace at Gondal, a govt. of India classified heritage hotel, and the Orchard Palace in the same town, are two mansion guest houses opened as heritage hotels. The interiors of these properties are appointed with period furniture, antiques and artefacts remniscent of the days of the Raj., The highlight of staying at these properties is that guests can see the royal garages, housing vintage and classic cars, and the Naulakha Palace, which is a festival of stone carvings and houses royal memorabilia including toys of the late 19th and early 20th century, silver caskets that carried messages and gifts for the Maharajah, elephant howdahs and royal portaits. It has an royal saloon suite, which has its own drawing, dining, bedroom and bathroom in a converted railway carriage.


Day 4: Gondal - Morbi

Today we drive to Morbi.

Reflected in the Macchu River, the 19th century Darbargadh spreads out all the glory and magnificence of a century made eternal by the patronage of maharajas.

The Jadejas ruled Morvi from the 17th century, but the oldest wing of their palaces that remain at Darbargadh, dates back to circa 1885 and is credited to HH Shri Waghji Rawaji Thakore.

Wooden stairways lead to marble galleries that skirt the palace while spacious public areas lead to equally vast suites with bathrooms the size of apartments ! A palm-fringed garden sits on one edge while a fountain bubbles in one of the courts.

Kathiavad is rich in monuments - even with an Indus Valley site at Lothal - and pilgrim spots which can be accessed from Morvi.


Day 5: Morbi - Wankaner - Mandvi

Today we drive to Bhuj enroute visiting Wankaner.

About50kms from Rajkot on the way to Kachchh, is Wankaner. Wankaner has a stupendous palace straddling a plateau halfway up a hill, with an awesome blend of Venetian Gothic, Hindu, Islamic and other architectural styles that harmonize into one single faade with no features seeming out of place. The palace, named the Ranjit vilas for prince Ranji who laid the foundation stone, has exquisite interiors done up in Italian marble stained glass, moulded ceilings, crystal, silver, custom-woven rugs and carpets, and early-20th century furniture. The palace museum has a collection of swords, daggers, shields and insignia. Accomodations are in the residence wing of the palace or the art deco royal oasis in a nearby orchard. The marble stepwell in the orchard, situated at the turn of the river Machchu, is one of the few in private ownership in Gujarat.

Overnight at THE BEACH AT MANDVI PALACE (Luxury Tents).

Day 6: Mandvi

Mandvi is located on the banks of the Rukmavati river, barely one km away from the Arabian Sea at the Gulf of Kutch. The town has a very pleasant climate throughout the year and was a summer retreat of the Kutch Maharaos.

The center of attraction at Mandvi is the Vijay Vilas Palace, a royal abode set in the middle of well-laid gardens with water channels and marble fountains. The architect and craftsmen from Jaipur designed and constructed the palace in 1920 AD. The palace has all the elements of Rajput architecture and draws largely on the plan of palaces of Orchha and Datia. The central high dome on the pillars, the Bengal domes on sides, the windows with coloured glass, carved stone jails, domed bastions at the corners, extended porch and other exquisitely stone carved elements, make the palace worth visiting. This is an example of the traditional skill of craftsmen of early 20th century.

The Vijay Vilas Palace has its own private beach, maintained in an eco-friendly manner to preserve its pristine beauty. For these reasons, this palace has been used as the setting in many Hindi films and has now become a popular tourist destination.

Mandvi has some very beautiful houses belonging to rich merchants with stone carving and plaster decorations. Their architectural style reflects the fusion of Indian and European styles of architecture. The Swaminarayan Temple is also one such example with its brightly painted exterior and elaborate plaster decorations. Other interesting buildings are a girls' high school (a former palace) built by Rao Lakhpat (1741-60 AD) and a light house. This old palace is a replica of the Aina Mahal of Bhuj, with intricate stone carvings. There is a wind farm on a picturesque beach nearby.

Day 7: Mandvi - Bhuj - Mumbai

Today we take a flight from Bhuj Airport to Mumbai.
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