The Great Rann of Kutch is a seasonal salt marsh located in the Thar Desert in the Kutch District of Gujarat, India and the Sindh province of Pakistan. It is about 7,505.22 square kilometers (2,897.78 sq mi) in size and is reputed to be the largest salt desert in the world. This area has been inhabited by the Kutchi people.
The Great Rann of Kutch, along with the Little Rann of Kutch and the Banni grasslands on its southern edge, is situated in the district of Kutch and comprises some 30,000 square kilometers (10,000 sq mi) between the Gulf of Kutch and the mouth of the Indus River in southern Pakistan. The marsh can be accessed from the village of Kharaghoda in Surendranagar District.
In India’s summer monsoon, the flat desert of salty clay and mudflats, which average 15 meters above sea level, fills with standing water. In very wet years, the wetland
When to Go There
The Rann of Kutch begins to dry up in October every year, steadily transforming into the desolate and surreal salt desert. The tourist season runs until March, and the above mentioned accommodations close at the end of March. You can still visit the salt desert in April and May though, on a day trip from Bhuj. However, it’s very hot during the day. Plus, there’s an absence of basic facilities for tourists (food, water and toilets).
It’s best to head out into the desert only in the early morning or evening, otherwise the salt can be blinding. The full moon is the best time of month to see it, and cultural programs are usually held at Dhordo then. A moonlight Rann camel safari is magical.
Gujarat Tourism has started holding a Rann Ustav festival, which begins in December. Hundreds of luxury tents are set up near the Gateway to Rann Resort at Dhordo for visitors, along with rows of food and handicraft stalls. The package price includes sightseeing trips to surrounding attractions. In recent years, the festival has extended until March and become increasingly commercialized. Unfortunately, this has resulted in pollution and garbage in the area.