Trailing Gujarat: Southern Kutch, Beachline of Mandvi

Wooden Ship at Mandvi Yard
                                        Wooden Ship at Mandvi Yard
Thanks to the roads in Kutch, we were able to do the entire leg of Western Kutch in half a day and which was indeed the only benefit of hiring a private taxi. We could have spent the later half of the day in Bhuj but we got off at Mandvi road for the sake of an evening at Arabian Sea.  Soon after settling the balance with taxi guy, we were waving our hands to get a commutation to Mandvi.
 

* Public Transport: State transport busses (hourly, 58 INR, 60km, 90 minutes) ply between frequently between Bhuj and Mandvi. One can also get shared Jeeps (Toofan) between these two cities.

Camel at Windfarm beach
                                                Camel at Windfarm beach

 

Once a major port of the region, Mandvi is now little busy shipbuilding yard with hundreds of men building wooden beauties ready to sail across Arabian Sea. Mandvi is some one hour drive from Bhuj and indeed quite a lazy day break during your trip to Kutch. Sea is mostly silent and beach line is fine for long walks. It's a minor delight and a good option for spending an evening during your trip to Kutch.
Ship Building yard of Mandvi
                                            Ship Building yard of Mandvi

Mandvi is blessed with typical tourist destinations which can consume a whole day but we were visiting Mandvi for shipyard and beach line. Opposite to Mandvi bus stands lies ship making yard which will definitely catch your attention. Ships are built on the mouth of the Rukmavati River and all of those are timber made. Some of those are huge enough to sail across the other shores.  Ship making site at Mandvi is quite fascinating in its own way. Later we hired an Auto (25 INR) to wind farm beach, which gets lively every evening. There used to be ferry services from Mandvi to Jamnagar through Gulf of Kutch. Ferry is now closed after earthquake of 2001.
Windfarm beach Mandvi
                                             Wind farm beach Mandvi

Unlike most of the beach line of India, Mandvi is not palm fringed yet it’s the best swimming experience in Kutch… Second to marsh land of Rann… J… Wind Farm beach has got a series of retired wind mills planted on the beach line which adds an extra charm to its Aura. Shore of Gulf of Kutch is a blessing for the communities looking in a harsh terrain of Kutch. Quite like the Chopati of Mumbai, Mandvi beach was cheerful with so many vibrant events taking place at the same time. You can get indulged in water sports, do camel riding on the beach side, fly kits, play games, munch snacks or just shout like everyone else. Flora on the beach-line of Mandvi was quite appealing to me because I had never seen babol tree (Acacia nilotica) on the sea shore anywhere else….It’s a long beach line so we walked aimlessly to the isolated side..  enjoyed the crowd from the distance.. appreciated the sunset….splashed through the cold water of the gulf….smelled the air which traveled the distance….finally sat near enough to hear the happiness, but far enough away not to feel it….
An Evening at Wind Farm beach
                                                  An Evening at Wind Farm beach

And it dusked and lights turned on….Sound of the footsteps diminished…underlying silence metamorphosed to the lapping of the sea….tourists receded indoors… stray dogs ventured out in the dark streets of Mandvi…. That’s how another night in Kutch began…….followed by a bus journey back to Bhuj and then the usual counting of stars on my notebook…
Sunset at Wind Farm beach Mandvi
                                        Sunset at Wind Farm beach Mandvi

Since the day I arrived in Bhuj, I had this strong desire of flying kites and indulged into Kite fighting (a game in which we try to cut the string of other kites). My procrastination surpassed my stay and we left Bhuj to venture towards the eastern side of Kutch which is the remotest and least visited side of Kutch. Our trip to Eastern side of Kutch was supposed to be around Dholavira which is located in the middle of Rann and quite remote. With that little piece of information and vague idea, we said good bye to Bhuj. I will come back for flying kites…. It’s my promise to you… darling Bhuj….

 

Trailing Gujarat Series: In Chronological Order

Trailing Gujarat: Train to Bhuj

Trailing Gujarat: Bhuj, Capital of Kutch

Trailing Gujarat: Northern Kutch, Dhordo and Kalo Dungar

Trailing Gujarat: Western Kutch, Lakhpat and Narayan Sarovar

Trailing Gujarat: Southern Kutch, Beachline of Mandvi

Trailing Gujarat: Eastern Kutch, Splendor of Rapar and Dholavira

Trailing Gujarat: Dhrangadhra, a lesser known delight of Gujarat

Trailing Gujarat: Little Rann of Kutch, Salt Plains and Heat Mirage

Trailing Gujarat: Jamnagar and Marine National Park, Narara

Trailing Gujarat: Dwarka, Where Pilgrims meet the end of earth (Read: Sea)

Trailing Gujarat: Junagadh, City of archaeological attractions

Trailing Gujarat: Gir National Park, last home of Asiatic Lions

Trailing Gujarat: Diu, Real thirst-quencher

Trailing Gujarat: Alang, Where Ships come to die

Trailing Gujarat: Champaner and Pavagadh

Trailing Gujarat: Ahmedabad and Lothal

Trailing Gujarat: Patan, Modhera and Separation

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