Though I’ve spent most of my childhood years in Gujarat, I had never been to many places in Gujarat. Our base location was Ahmedabad and we shifted base for a few years to Baroda before moving back to Ahmedabad. As for travelling, we travelled to quite a few places like Dwarka, Porbandar, Okha, Diu along with a few close-by places. But unfortunately, I have very faint memories of those travels as I was in 1-2nd grade back then.
Rann of Kutch was a place that I only marked on maps but never got a chance to visit. But thanks to Gujarat Tourism and Ministry of Tourism, Govt. of India for inviting to me experience the White Rann. I don’t know if I would have ever gotten a chance to visit & experience Incredible Rann Utsav ever.
I’ve already written a few blog posts earlier sharing my experience of visiting places like Rani Ki Vav, doing the Ahmedabad Heritage Walk and also my Rann Utsav Tent City experience. So if you have not already gone through it, I’d suggest please go and give it a read. I’m sure you’ll find it helpful. Coming to this blog post – the Essential guide to White Rann – I’m going to talk about the various things you must do at the White Rann. I’ve jotted down Things to do at White Rann, and the last one is the best one! So go through the entire blog post 🙂
What is White Rann?
Rann of Kutch also known as White Rann is the World’s Largest salt dessert. It is essentially a salt marshy land in the Thar Desert that extends into Rajasthan as a normal sandy desert. It’s spread over an area of 30,000 sq. km. with most parts in Gujarat and some parts in Sindh, Pakistan. The region comprises of Little Rann of Kutch and the Banni grasslands down south which together is known as the Rann of Kutch. It is inhabited by Kutchhi people and the region is one of the hottest in India.
The interesting fact about Rann Of Kutch is that it was a part of the Arabian sea for quite a long time until the tectonic uplift caused the area to be disconnected from the actual sea. The area back then was also navigated by Alexander The Great so you know how old the region is. During monsoons and high tide, the water from the sea comes and settles in this ‘large pit’ and water remains still for days together. The water slowly evaporates leaving the crystalline salt you see here.
As per the locals, the whole of Rann of Kutch is not accessible during the monsoons. The point to note is that most of India’s salt is made in Kutch, but it doesn’t go from Rann Of Kutch since there’s a high bromine content in this area. Salt mostly goes from the Little Rann Of Kutch region. Now that I’ve spoken about Rann Of Kutch, White Dessert, let me share with you the things to do in White Rann as part of this essential guide.
Things to do in White Rann
Sunrise & Sunset
The Rann Of Kutch is white, pure White and it extends to areas you can see. It’s a layer of white salt under the clear blue sky. It’s a sight to behold and has its own charm. The colours of the region change based on the time of the day. Sunrise at White Rann is magical. There’s a watchtower in the area from where you can get a good view of the sunrise. But you can also take a walk into the Rann to a point where there’s no one between you and the sun.
Sunset at White Rann is equally magical. We were here by 5 PM and the colours changed from blue skies to orange and eventually red. It’s like a painting, trust me as I say this. Hence all the packages at Rann Utsav Tent City include sunrise and sunset because that’s the highlight of the White Rann. So whether it’s morning or evening, or the day, the White Rann will leave you spellbound! So watching a Sunset at White Rann is a must and should be on your itinerary.
Star gazing at White Rann
Like I mentioned earlier, the colours at the Rann change with time. While it’s magical during the sunrise and sunset, it’s incredible during the night. You can plan a visit to White Rann on a full moon day or a new moon day and the moments you’ll spend here will be totally worth it. We were there during a new moon night and it was like a white blanket under a sky full of stars – check out the below photo that I managed to click from my Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G smartphone!
Things you don't get to see in cities – STARS!— Atulmaharaj (@Atulmaharaj) December 9, 2021
Here's what I managed to capture during a star gazing event organized at #RannUtsav @GujaratTourism
📸 @SamsungIndia S20 FE 5G#Socialmaharaj #TravelBlogger #AllIndiaInfluencersMeet2021 pic.twitter.com/6YzA5P79YK
If you live in a city, trust me this would be the most number of stars you would have ever seen in your life. Stargazing at White Rann is magical (excuse me for using the word magical so many times but that’s how it is) A group called Star Gazing India conducts these guided stargazing sessions where they set up a few telescopes and help you identify various constellations and stars. You can even spot the milky way during certain times of the year. Hence, make sure you go out of your itinerary and go for star gazing at White Rann.
On a full moon night, the light from the moon bounces off the white rann creating a magical moment. I have not experienced it and so want to do it!
The next activity that you want to do at Rann of Kutch is Paramotoring. Just like you do paragliding in Himachal or Parasailing in the seas of Goa, Paramotoring in the White Rann is quite popular. They have made a landing/take-off strip in the White Rann and a lot of people do try it. Even when you are visiting the Rann to view the Sunrise you’ll be approached by the paramotoring folks.
So you can take an experience of paramotoring during the sunrise or during the day. The trip cost varies from time to time and operator to operator. At the tent city, the price mentioned was about Rs 3500 for a 10min ride so that I guess will give you a good idea. I’m not into adventure at all, so this isn’t my cup of tea. However, it’s something a lot of people enjoy.
Admire the beauty of White Rann
This one is the best thing to do at White Rann – just sit and admire the beauty. All you need to do at White Rann is walk as much as you can and go to a place where there aren’t many people. Make sure that the ground underneath is firm, because the more you walk into the Rann the ground gets softer so it can get dangerous. So make sure you take caution of that.
Find a good spot, sit there (remember your clothes will get dirty) and simply admire the beauty of White Rann. I regret not doing it as I was (like everyone else) busy clicking photos and taking videos and missed on soaking in the vibe of the place. So go there, keep your camera on a tripod start the recording and live the moment.
Visiting the Rann Of Kutch was long due and a place that I always wanted to visit. It is one of the most magical places I’ve been to and I feel everyone must plan to visit it at least once (if not more). You will get the essence of Kutch and the beautiful, different landscape that will leave you amazed. Moreoever, the facilities at Rann Utsav is top-notch and it will make your white Rann experience much better.
So plan your next trip to the Rann Of Kutch and share your experience with me. If you’ve already been there, let me know your thoughts on this blog post. Leave your comments below, tweet to me at @Atulmaharaj, DM on Instagram or Get In Touch!
Note: It was my first time in Rann Of Kutch and all thanks to Gujarat Tourism for inviting me to experience the same. Though I’ve grown up in Gujarat I didn’t get a chance to visit the place while I was there. So a big thank you to Gujarat Tourism and the Ministry of Tourism for arranging this trip and taking care of everything.