RANN OF KUTCH
The Runn of Kutch
“The Rann of Kutch” is a remarkable place to visit in Gujarat state. Much of it consists of the world’s largest salt desert, measuring around 10,000 square kilometers. What makes it even more fascinating is that the salt desert remains underwater during the main monsoon season in India. For rest of the eight months of the year, it’s an enormous stretch of packed white salt.
Dhordo, approximately 86 kilometers from Bhuj, is being developed by the Gujarat government as the Gateway to the Rann. Dhordo is on the edge of the salt desert. It’s most convenient to stay there, or nearby Hodka.
The Rann Utsav
The Government of Gujarat hosts an annual 3 month long festival called the Rann Utsav (festival of the Rann), where tourists can see the various sights of the Rann as well as get a taste of the local culture, cuisine and hospitality. Specially built local houses are also used to house tourists to give them a taste of them. Many adventure clubs and travel clubs organize expeditions.
At night, an unexplained strange dancing light phenomena known locally as Chir Batti (ghost lights) occurs in the Rann, the adjoining Banni grasslands, and the seasonal wetlands. A team of local and US ornithologists and soldiers of the Indian Border Security Force (BSF) who patrol the adjoining Rann of Kutch international border area of India with Pakistan have allegedly seen the light. Some reports claim the light can only be seen after 8 pm on dark nights, are always two to ten feet above the ground, and if followed during the night, one could be misled from the road and lose their way in thorny jungles or desert of the salt flats of the Rann.