Discover India's Gujarat region's unique culture and wildlife on this nine-day tour. You’ll explore Mumbai’s sacred ghats, meet the skilled Mir and Rabari textile tribes, and tour ancient architecture in UNESCO-listed Ahmedabad. Enjoy safaris in Velavadar and Gir National Parks, where you’ll bump across grasslands and forests, spotting everything from wolves to blackbucks, exotic birds, and the world's last remaining Asiatic lions.

Highlights

  • Explore Ahmedabad's religious and historical sites 
  • Spot wildlife on Jeep safaris in Velavadar and Gir National Parks 
  • Visit the Mir and Rabari communities in Dasada  
  • Experience Mumbai's beaches and sacred Dhobi Ghat  

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Mumbai, Visit Dhobi Ghat Mumbai
Day 2 Fly to Ahmedabad, Half-Day Ahmedabad Tour  Ahmedabad
Day 3 Transfer to Dasada, Visit Modhera Sun Temple & Patan  Dasada
Day 4 Dasada Jeep Safari & Local Village Tour Dasada
Day 5 Transfer to Velavadar National Park & Afternoon Safari  Velavadar
Day 6 Transfer to Gir National Park, Afternoon Jeep Safari Gir National Park
Day 7 Full-Day Safari in Gir National Park Gir National Park
Day 8 Fly to Mumbai, Enjoy Free Time at Juhu Beach Mumbai
Day 9 Depart Mumbai  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Mumbai, Visit Dhobi Ghat

Arrive in Mumbai, the City of Dreams

Welcome to India! Your driver will be waiting at the airport to take you to your hotel in the heart of Mumbai. Nicknamed "The City of Dreams," Mumbai is the capital of Maharashtra and a remarkable dichotomy of chaos and hope, glamour and Bollywood, modernity and tradition. Settle in and then head out to explore, wandering the city's streets to discover magnificent colonial buildings, buzzing bazaars, and glittering temples.

Visit Mahalaxmi Dhobi Ghat, which is known as the world's biggest outdoor laundry, located next to Mahalaxmi Railway Station. In fact, the word Dhobi Ghat is used all over India to refer to any place where dhobis (washers) work. Hundreds of dhobis toil away in rows of open-air concrete wash stations, each with its own flogging stone.

End the evening with an Indian feast at one of the many restaurants in the Colaba and Marine Drive area. Each serves signature local dishes like vada pav (deep-fried potato dumplings in a bread bun) and pav bhaji (vegetable curry with bread), a meal originally created for Mumbai's cotton mill workers. 

Day 2: Fly to Ahmedabad, Half-Day Ahmedabad Tour 

Take in the amazing Ahmedabad architecture

This morning, you'll fly north to Ahmedabad, India's first UNESCO World Heritage City and the most populous metropolis in Gujarat. A driver will be waiting to take you to your hotel in the city for a rest before your afternoon tour of Ahmedabad's most famous landmarks. Visit the Gandhi Ashram, situated near the Sabarmati River, which was the residence of Mahatma Gandhi during the freedom movement and now serves as a museum about his life.

You'll also get to see religious sites like Swaminarayan Temple and ancient architectural wonders such as the nearby Adalaj Stepwell, a lavish five-story well that dates back to the 15th century. If there's time, stop at Sidi Saiyyed Mosque and Jama Masjid, both beloved for their elaborate design, or pay a visit to the Auto World Vintage Car Museum.

Tonight, take a guided walking tour to experience Ahmedabad after dark. The trip begins at 8:45 pm from Sidi Saiyyed Mosque and takes you through the city's oldest parts. Make your way through narrow lanes, past grand havelis (townhouses), to the bustling food court at Manek Chowk. Finish above the gateway leading to Raja no Hajiro (Ahmed Shah's tomb), where you'll watch drummers signal the closing of the city gates at 10:30 pm, a 600-year-old tradition. 

Day 3: Transfer to Dasada, Visit Modhera Sun Temple & Patan 

The Sun Temple in Modhera
Admire the Sun Temple in Modhera

Today you'll make the three-hour journey to Dasada's Little Rann of Kutch, an expansive stretch of desert in Gujarat that floods during the monsoon season and dries into vast, lunar-like salt flats. The region is divided into two parts, the Great Rann of Kutch and Little Rann of Kutch, and is so famous that it appears in numerous Bollywood films such as "Refugee," "Magadheera," and "Sarainodu."

On the way to Dasada, you'll stop in Modhera to admire the Sun Temple, designed to allow dawn sunlight to stream in, illuminating a mural of the solar deity Surya. Next, visit Patan, which is known for its textiles and architectural monuments. Explore the UNESCO-listed Rani ki Vav stepwell, which was built in ornate Maru-Gujara style as a memorial to a revered 11th-century king, set on the peaceful banks of the Sarasvati.  

Day 4: Dasada Jeep Safari & Local Village Tour

Spot feeding flamingoes in Rann of Kutch

Start the day with a Jeep safari in Rann of Kutch, setting off at dawn for the lush wetlands. Look for desert animals and colorful bird species that inhabit the wetlands along the way. The desert plains are also home to everything from Indian gazelles and blackbuck to jackals, foxes, and jungle cats. You may even catch a glimpse of a shy Indian wolf if lucky. The trip is a must for wildlife photographers and nature enthusiasts alike.

In the afternoon, take a trip to Dasada's nearby villages and tribal settlements. Visit the women of the Mir and Rabari tribes, who create some of the most intricate textiles in the country. These skilled embroiders use herringbone stitches interspersed with small mirrors and occasional chain stitches to create peacock motifs. Enjoy the beautiful sunset and do some bird watching at Bajana Lake before returning to your hotel.     

Day 5: Transfer to Velavadar National Park, Afternoon Safari 

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Watch blackbuck antelope graze in Velavadar National Park

Today starts with a drive south through extensive plains and thorny scrubland to Velavadar National Park, also known as Blackbuck National Park. Famed for its wild grassland plains, the park is a refuge for India's largest herds of blackbuck antelope. At dawn, there's a good chance of spotting the endangered Indian wolf near watering holes.

This afternoon, take a safari in Velavadar, looking out for the area's striking blackbucks as you go. The pale gold grassland is dotted with herds of grazing game, and your guide will help you spot various animal and bird species, including majestic raptors. Popular sightings include striped hyenas, jackals, jungle cats, and Indian foxes.  

Day 6: Transfer to Gir National Park, Afternoon Jeep Safari

See the Rufous-tailed lark on a morning bird safari

Your Velavadar safari adventure ends this morning. Before you leave, there's a chance to take an optional bird-watching safari to catch a glimpse of some of Velavadar's 300 species. These include tropical Indian grassland species like Stolizka's bushchat, Rufous-tailed lark, and the rare lesser florican. There's also a chance to see endangered vulture species and various types of sandgrouse, larks, and falcons.

Next, set off on a five-hour drive to Gir National Park, the last remaining habitat for the Asiatic lion. Once hunted to near extinction, lion numbers have slowly increased thanks to the park's conservation efforts. Discover the park on an afternoon Jeep safari with an expert naturalist. They'll take you to the best game-viewing locations, pointing out the park's unique flora and fauna along the way. 

Traverse dry scrubland and deciduous forest in the 545 square-mile (1,412 sq km) park, which supports over 2,000 animal species, including panthers, leopards, sambars, cobras, and chital. There's plenty of birdlife, too, including the delicate paradise fly-catcher and a crocodile hatchery located just outside the sanctuary.   

Day 7: Full-Day Safari in Gir National Park

Learn about the Asiatic lion on a Jeep safari
Spend another day on safari in Gir National Park. Watch the morning sunshine warm the plains where antelope graze. Return to your hotel for breakfast and then take a few hours to rest at your lodge. You'll head off again in the afternoon, bumping through the park's rainforests, grasslands, and acacia scrubs. As well as Asiatic lions, you'll have a chance to see resident leopards, sloth bears, and crocodiles that live in the seasonal rivers and man-made reservoirs in the park.  

Day 8: Fly to Mumbai, Enjoy Free Time at Juhu Beach

Goodbye, Mumbai!
Enjoy free time on Juhu Beach, Mumbai
Say goodbye to Gir National Park this morning and fly back to Mumbai, where you'll spend the rest of the day exploring independently. Visit Juhu Beach, the city's most popular place to relax. The beach's rugged shoreline and soft sands are loved by locals and tourists alike, especially at sunset. Take advantage of tasty street food snacks, such as dosas and ice cream sandwiches. 

Day 9: Depart Mumbai

Leave Mumbai today
Today your India adventure ends. Check out of your hotel and take a transfer to Mumbai Airport for your homebound flight. Safe travels!

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Map

Map of Highlights of Gujarat: Culture & Wildlife – 9 Days
Map of Highlights of Gujarat: Culture & Wildlife – 9 Days