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Prag Mahal

Bhuj – A Guide to the Gateway of Kutch

Bhuj is the capital of the Kutch district of Gujarat. Kutch is the largest district in the country. The history of Bhuj dates to the early 16th century. The land was invaded multiple times by Mughals, the English and by nature in the form of earthquake. The ancient city still stands tall despite of whatever happened to it, welcoming tourists with a palette of colours especially in the winters. In the past few years Bhuj has become a stop for tourists before visiting the Rann of Kutch. This blog post ‘Bhuj – A Guide to the Gateway of Kutch’ talks about everything that you need to know about Bhuj.

Prag Mahal Entrance
Prag Mahal Entrance

How to reach Bhuj?

By Road Reach Ahmedabad in Gujarat and get a bus from Gita Mandir bus stop or commute by car
Time taken: 7 hours
By Train – You will get many trains from Ahmedabad junction. Click here to check the list.
Time taken: 5-6 hours
By Flight – There are very less flights from Ahmedabad to Bhuj and they don’t fly on daily basis.

Budget Stay Suggestions

Hotel Shyam Palace
Click Hotel
Bhuj-Jaat House

Food at Bhuj

Bhuj is a vegetarian town, and all the shops open only after 10 am. If you must leave early to tour the town you will have to eat at handcarts like how I did.
The most common food options would be Puri Shaak, Poha, Fafda and Jalebi.

Places to visit in Bhuj

You can take an auto-rickshaw to go to Prag Mahal and from there you can walk to tour all the places within the Bhuj city. You will need to hire a taxi or drive your car to go to Bhujodi or Maandvi.

Prag Mahal

It is a 19th century palace built in an Italian-Gothic style with an Indo-Gothic twist. During the 2001 earthquake the palace was severely damaged and later restored. There is a majestic darbar hall and clock tower which is not to be missed. The 45-foot clock tower in the palace is from where you will get to view the entire city of Bhuj.
Visiting time: 9am-12pm, 3pm-6pm
Ticket cost: Rs. 40
Days open: All days except Thursday

Durbar Hall
Durbar Hall – Prag Mahal

Aina Mahal

The 18th century palace is located within the same premises as the Prag Mahal. This palace also got severely damaged during the 2001 earthquake and you can still see the traces of it.
Visiting time: 9 am – 12 pm, 3 pm – 6pm
Ticket cost: Rs. 20
Days open: All days except Thursday

Bhuj Chhatedi

Chhatedi means Chhatri in Gujarati/Hindi which translates to ‘Umbrella’. ‘Chhatedi’ here refers to the umbrella like structures over the buildings. These structures were constructed by the Jadeja rulers in the 18th century. All the chhatris are constructed over the samadhi of the Royal Family of Bhuj.
Timing: 9 am – 6 pm
Ticket cost: Nil

Ramkund Stepwell

This is a small stepwell located at walking distance from Kutch Museum. There isn’t much to see apart from the stepwell itself.
Timing: 9am – 6pm
Ticket cost: Nil

RamKund
Ram Kund

Kutch Museum

It was established in the late 19th century, and it is said to be one of the oldest museums in Gujarat. The ground floor of the museum in Bhuj shows different tribes from in and around Kutch and their culture. The first floor has a collection of coins and artwork on cloth which is something to be noted.
Timing: 10 am – 5 pm
Ticket cost: Rs.5

KutchMuseum
Kutch Museum

Swaminarayan Temple

This is one of the temples that looks good from outside and feels good from inside. It is again at a walkable distance from the Kutch Museum.
Timing: 5 am – 9 pm

Bhujodi Vande Mataram Museum

Bhujodi village is around 10 km from Bhuj city in Kutch. This place is known for its crafts and the Vande Mataram Memorial.
The memorial educates us about India’s struggle for Independence. The Vande Mataram Memorial (museum) was constructed over 12 acres of land over a period of 4 years. You will be able to find a guide in Bhuj and Bhujodi of Kutch if required.

A laser show happens there everyday after sunset.
Timing: 11 am – 6 pm
Ticket cost: Rs.200/- (adult), Rs.50/- (child)
Days open: All days except Monday

Vande Mataram Memorial
Vande Mataram Memorial

Shopping in and around Bhuj

What to shop?

  • Bandhani sarees, chudidars, koti, dupatta, tops
  • Kutchchi slippers
  • Ornaments
  • Purses and bags
  • Handicrafts
  • Keychains and much more

Where to shop?

Bhuj, Bhujodi, Ajrakhpur, Hodka, Kalo Dungar and Dhordo

Prag Mahal wall
On the way to the Durbar hall in Prag Mahal

Apart from Bhuj and Bhujodi, one can visit Mandvi, Rann of Kutch and Narayan Sarovar Dam. The colours, people, culture and the places will keep wanting you to visit Kutch. There are so many places to visit in Kutch and to explore it to your heart’s content you might need at least a week.

You have read my guide to Bhuj but have you read my Rann of Kutch post yet?
Click here for the link.

Click here to read my other blog posts from Gujarat.

Aarthy Chinnaiya

Hola, you travel-prying soul! Welcome to my blog and thanks for stopping by! My name is Aarthy Chinnaiya, exploring new places, food and people gets me excited. I focus on budget travel and exploring places to the fullest in limited number of days (being a Software Engineer I don't get much leaves you see :P). Follow me for a constant dose of my travel stories, experiences, tips and much more.

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