Best time to visit Gujarat is October to March. Preferable avoid going there in monsoons.
Gujarat has been derived from the Prakrit Gujjar Ratta or Gujjar Rashtra - land of Gujjars. Gujjars are a tribe that entered India with the Huns in ancient times wandering through Punjab and Rajasthan and settled here in the Western part of India. In the start of the 1st century Saka rulers played a prominent role in Gujarat history. Later came the Gupta reign headed by Chandragupta Vikramaditya. By 5th century came Maitrakas of Valabhi, then Solankis, Vaghelas, and then came the attack of Allaudin Khilji. After around 400 years the Peshwas came into power and later on alliances with British took place.
Mahatma Gandhi who played a key role in the fight against the British regime was born here, apart from Dadabhai Naroji, Sardar Vallabhai Patel, Pheroz Shah Mehta, etc. Don't forget Tatas and Swami Dayanand Saraswati also root down to Gujarat.
Gujarat is divided into Katch and Saurashtra
Rivers are - Banas, Sabarmati, Mahi, Narmada, Tapi, Setrunji etc.
Mountain ranges seen here - Aravallis, Vindhyas, and Sayadris.
The Rann of Kutch is a saline tract that remains submerged in the sea for the better parts of the year.
Mountain peaks - Girnar, Shetrunjay, Chotila, Bardo, Arasur, Pavagadh and Taranga. Girnar is the highest (1,145m)and has a flame like appearance. It is also known as Guru Daddatreya peak. Next to the peak is Jamial Shah Pir that is a muslim holy place.
The Shetrunjay hill near Palitana is one of the five sacred hills for the Jains that has many Jain temples.
Buddhist caves are seen in Uparkot fort in Junagarh, Talaja, Lor and Sana hills.
People are simple, hardworking and value their Traditions and cultures a lot.
Hindi can be spoken here as the people follow the language. The people are a group of various ethnic tribes mixed together.
We were shocked to see Negroes in the inner villages of saurashtra. On enquiring we came to know that a group of the descendants of the African sailors and traders who came here long ago settled here and they are known as 'siddhis'.
Fairs and Festivals
International Kite Festival - is held between 10th to 15th January every year.
Bhavnath Fair - It is held in Fabruary at the temple of Bhavnath 3 kms from Junagarh.
Tarnetar fair - Held around August-September, at Tarnetar village of Sundernagar district 196 kms from Ahmedabad and around 96 kms from Rajkot. It is believed that Arjuna aimed his arrow at the fish's eye here to wed Draupadi.
Somnath fair - is held around November in the Somnath temple.
Mahhavrai Fair - is held around April at Madhavpur in Porbandar and celebrates the marriage of Lord Krishna and Rukmini.
Vautha fair - is held in November at Vautha 56 kms from Ahmedabad and celebrates the confluence of 7 rivers.
Jain fairs - are held in Palitata.
Dang Durbar- is held in March at Dangs adivasi village
Sarkej Fair - is a muslims fair at Roza Sheikh Ahmed 10 kms from Ahmedabad.
Silver jewelry in Kutch and Rajkot.
Leather items in Kutch.
Wooden sofas from Sankheda near Baroda.
Toys & Lacquer work of Mahuva.
Metal and Woodwork of Saurashtra.
Patolas of Patan
Bandhani of Jamnagar, Bhuj, and Mandvi
Ajrakh work is found in Anjar, Dhamadka
Embroidery, patchwork and mirror work of Saurashtra
Banni textiles of Kutch
The zari and gold thread weaves of Surat. (Look for the Gajee or satin silk saree or Tanchoi sarees)