Sunday, October 24, 2010

Christmas break, remembering Rann!

Christmas break is around the corner, and I’ve finally convinced my sis to take a few days off from work. Yeay!

Thinking of Christmas reminds me of the Rann of Kutch trip last year.

I can still remember the December chill in the air, even as the sun burned down on us. The bright colours of the women’s Sarees and Ghagras (a long skirt and blouse teemed with a shawl) contrasting with their heavy jewellery. Men in white dhotis and shoes. Sleepy, sleepy village towns with old traditional havellis, but all in disrepair. A shepherd with his sheep blocking our jeep. Camel’s pulling carts with people and loads. A fat fati in the middle of nowehere. I couldn’t help but be reminded of my four years in another desert state – the landscape, people, the dryness, the heat and chill, all had a familiarity of yesterday.

I had always meant to post Devjibhai’s details (we stayed at his camp), and also some more photos. Meanwhile, I am looking forward to going someplace with my sis this time!

How to get there? There are several points of entry into the Rann of Kutch. Through bhuj and Gandhidham, you can enter the Greater Rann, and through Dhrangadhra or Zainabad, you can enter Little Rann. We went to Dhrangadhra. From Mumbai, we took a sleeper bus to Ahmedabad. From here, you can take both buses and vans to Dhrangadhra. From Dhrangadra, there was a jeep drive to the camp.

Where did we stay? Devjibhai Damecha runs a camp here and offers both huts and tents for accommodation. He is a nature photographer, environmentalist and birder. We found him very helpful – despite the lateness of our request, he was able to accommodate us. The safari’s were also well organized. In the evening, he even offered us a short ride to catch the sunset.

Devji's website is here.
Other options include: Desert coursers, and the Rann riders. Best way is to shortlist among these and call them for info!

How many days? We spent about 2 and half days. Reserving a day for the safari is good, but we were on a much slower pace, with nowhere else to be.

In a crowded van, chugging towards ...

Road blocked!

Mr. Shepherd

A beautiful sunset

Our hut or Kbooba

Cute dog in the camp


Meena Venkataraman said...

Beautiful Pictures Neeraja.

Thanks for all the info :)... Just added one more to the travel list, but I have no idea when it will happen

Anil P said...

Have been meaning to make it to the Rann since long, this should act as one more push in the direction.

Only recently I read a rivetting travel story of a family who lost one of its own to the Rann, where landmarks cease just as quickly as sunset would if we slipped down a cliff.

Nisha said...

This is one place that is eluding me for quite sometime now. Must do something abt it as I have travel plans occupying me every month till next April. :(

Ms.N said...

@ Meena - yes, the never ending list. But yes, i recommend!

@Anil - o shucks, that does sound scary. Obviously - we didn't venture on our own, and it was even hard to make out how much of the territory we penetrated. After we saw the flamingos, the return journey seemed so much quicker than the onward - so...

@Nisha, ah well! I would love to have a calender with travel plans all the way till next April!!!

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Alice said...

Nice pictures of Runn. Thanks for sharing. I seems that you had a good time there.

Stanko Smith said...

Well, it's good for sharing your wonderful Rann experience on Christmas break. Perhaps, you can also have wonderful trip to Playa Del Carmen, Hawaii Island

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