A truncated Complete Tour of Gujarat


A true traveler does not have a fixed itinerary

truncated Complete Gujarat Tour - Day 0:

Give Back To The Society More Than What You Have Taken

First things first. My name is B P Bhat (BPB), aged about 51 years. I live in Bengaluru. Travelling, touring and trekking are my hobbies. I am new to this bcm touring. In a way, I am also new to this vast virtual world of 'internet travelogue readers family'. But I am neither new to travelling, nor to travelogue writing.

Recently I toured the state of Gujarat along with my friend Madhu Kiran Reddy (MKR). And let me pen down our memories for the benefit of this virtual internet world.

I will tell you more about ourselves along our tour. I will be taking you along with us, in this wonderful truncated complete tour of Gujarat. I know, you already have a couple of doubts. But don't worry, I am here to clarify all your doubts. Come, join with us in this dream tour.

Why I am writing this travelogue ?

My touring and trekking activity started way back in 1982 or so. And it was some time in 2007. I had started touring in a big, very big way. I was not aware of internet then. I used to try to get my questions clarified from friends and travel magazines. But I was not getting the replies that I wanted.

Some time in 2008, I got myself introduced to this internet world. I started asking questions in few travel websites. But alas, here also there were hardly anybody to help me out. I slowly realized that my travelling is quite different from the way in which other people travel. And that is why I am not getting the answers I want.

Then I started doing research on my own on my tours. Almost all my tours are completely dependent from the details that I get on the internet. Someone, from somewhere, has posted these details; and I get it free of cost.

So I think it is my duty to share my experiences with other readers, so that it will be helpful to others. Hence I consider it is my moral duty to give back to the society more than what I have taken.

The experience that I have written here is ours own. The details of the place that I have given in flower brackets “{}” are taken from Wikipedia and other internet sources. I have reproduced the same in brief, so that you don’t have to search the same in the internet.


If you are only a regular reader of travel stories enjoying travelogues; you are most welcome to continue reading the same.

In case if you have come to this travelogue while searching for Gujarat’s travel related information,


if you want to make an itinerary of Gujarat based on our tour,


please keep a few points in mind:-

- This tour is done by us, who are quite experienced in this type of travel.

- I have clocked more than 2 lakh kms on my various bikes and more than 3.5 lakh kms on my various four-wheelers.

- I have traveled in many states and parts of India in this way; – how? You will come to know as we proceed.

- My friend MKR has traveled extensively in the USA.

- We are also hardcore trekkers. We have trekked at many places in the Himalayas as well as Western Ghats.

- Our main objective is to see the places. We enjoy driving, and seeing the places.

- We don’t give too much importance to the Hotel Rooms, the facility offered in the Hotels etc. A room is just a resting place for us, to spend one night. That is all and nothing more than that.

- We are not very fond of food. We are happy with anything that is hygienic and filling.

- Most important: The journey is also a destination for us.

- While selecting the tourist places to visit, I have omitted few places due to shortage of time. So our list of places may differ with your places, depending on your time, interest, season etc.

- So, while you can take the route and places covered by us, the costing given at the end of this travelogue may not hold good for you.

- Also you may not cope up with our speed in covering the places.

So while making your own itinerary, keep these points in mind.

Gujarat Tour: How did it all start?

Gujarat was always there in my hit list from a long time. This was one of the major states where my foot prints were not put. I tried to tour Gujarat 4-5 times earlier, but some how or the other it got cancelled.

And now Modiji has left Gujarat and moved on to New Delhi. During 2014 Loksabha elections, one of the major topic was Gujarat model of development. (No, I am not talking politics here. And I assure you, I will not be talking politics in my entire tour). So this time I wanted to tour Gujarat some how or the other. I did not wanted to go my bullet waste this time. I must take out Gujarat from my hit list this time at any cost.

* * * * *

So sometime in October 2014, I asked MKR -

BPB – Shall we go on a complete tour of Gujarat ?

MKR – How many days it might take ?

– I don’t know. Gujarat Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) people say that it might take around 45 days. Private tour operators told me that I have gone mad to undertake this kind of a tour; because no one else tours this way. I think around three weeks might be good enough to do this.

MKR – Ok, I am for a game. When shall we go?

– The right season to tour Gujarat is during winter. I am busy up to Sankranti (Mid January 2015). So we can start any time after 15th Jan 2015.

MKR – Ok, fine with me also. But I may not be able to spare so many days. I may have to return back by beginning of February.

This is how our tour preparation started. I took almost two weeks to prepare the tour route, itinerary, places and other details. I have referred to this as ‘Tour Guide’ in this travelogue. MKR got his Ford Figo Diesel car serviced.

A small note on the photos & videos:

- Unless & otherwise specified, all the photos and videos of this tour are taken by BPB and MKR.

- The cameras used are Samsung Galaxy S2 & Xiaomi MI3 mobiles and Canon 100D.

- All the old photos (not related to Gujarat tour) are taken by BPB using Nikon P5000.

And on 18th January 2015, our Gujarat tour started.

So I will take you along with us on our journey. Please follow us.
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A true traveler does not have a fixed itinerary
Day 1: (18 Jan 2015):

A true traveler does not have a fixed itinerary

We left Bengaluru at 5.30 am. Many times I had done this type of tours along with my family. For MKR, this is his first major tour in India. And this is the first time that we are touring together like this.

We require two days to reach Gujarat border. Hence other than talking, we didn’t have much work to do. I will tell you about our discussion which matters here.

MKR – From how long you are touring ?
BPB – Since 1982 or so. I started with Public transport, and then on my Hero Jet bycycle. In 1987 or so, I bought RX100 bike. I have done few tours in my Bullet & Yezdi bikes also. And when I upgraded my vehicle to a four wheeler, these tours increased.

MKR – How was the roads then ?
BPB – Oh, don’t ask. It was a nightmare to ride the two wheelers then. Roads were full of pot holes. Highways were 2 lanes and State Roads were single lanes.

MKR – Yeah.
BPB – We are going in NH4 now. I had traveled in this road when it was 2 lane road also. In fact now I fondly call these roads as Vajpayee Road. He was the mastermind behind these roads.

MKR – Yeah. But I don’t like these hefty tolls …
BPB – I don’t know about the administration and running a government. Govt collects lots of Road Tax from vehicles. It also collects lots of tax on fuel etc. How much is utilized to maintain the roads ? But if I am right, throughout the world, tolled roads are common these days.

MKR – Yeah, even in US we have tolled roads.
BPB – I like tolled roads.

MKR – Why ?
BPB – You see, last time when I traveled in this route many years back, in one day I could cover only 500 kms. From Bengaluru, I could reach Belagavi only. But because of the tolled road, I think today we can cover around 750 kms. The normal toll is Rs 1 per km. But I save this amount in my fuel bill. So it offsets what I have paid.

MKR – You are right.
BPB – There are other advantages. There is less wear and tear on the vehicle. The breakdown is less. But the biggest advantages are – we don’t get tired; and we can finish our tour quickly.

MKR – Can you elaborate ?
BPB – Just assume that there are only local roads. We might save on the toll charges. But our Gujarat tour might take around 1 month to complete. But if the roads are good, then even if we pay the tolls, we can finish the same tour in say, 20 days. So we will be saving 10 days’ time as well as the cost for those 10 days. So in my opinion, a tolled road is always better than an ordinary road.

MKR – You are right. But we pay so much of tax to the Govt. And what about the local people who use these tolled roads regularly ?
BPB – You are right. But I as I said earlier, I have no idea how it works.

Soon we reached Dharwad. Along the highway, on right side, you can find this magnificent building.

This is High Court of Karnataka – Dharwad bench.


Dharwad Bench of Karnataka High Court

And a little while later, we came closer to Belagavi. Again along the highway, on right side, you can find another magnificent building.


Suvarna Vidhana Soudha at Belagavi

It was constructed to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of Karnataka’s formation day. Nearly 400 crore rupees was spent on this building. But what a colossal waste !. It is used only once in a year, to hold a session of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly. This is how our tax money is wasted by the politicians. They could have constructed some good roads with this money.

It was nearing 2 pm and we were near Sankeshwar. It was time for lunch. Bengaluru is one of the best cities in India as far as food is concerned. But when it comes to the highways, Karnataka lags behind other states. We don’t know how the food will be in Maharashtra. So we decided to have our lunch here itself.

After the lunch our journey resumed. And our conversation went on.

MKR - I think we may have to cover around 8 – 9,000 kms in this tour. Why you did not opt to travel in a taxi ?
BPB – There are many reasons. To list a few: See this toll itself. The Govt. collects toll to construct and maintain good roads. And one of the major beneficiaries is the vehicle owner, because of higher mileage and reduced wear-and-tear. But all the taxi operators pass on the toll to us. Actually their reduced fuel cost will cover this toll, but they want us to pay the toll. This is highly unfair. But no one protests.

MKR – Any other reason ?
BPB – Of course. The taxi drivers will not easily oblige to drive as per our directions. They have a certain mindset. They can’t think beyond that. Many of them are allergic to travel to lesser known places. If we travel continuously for many days, then they start murmuring. Because of this, the mood goes off. And there is no pleasure in travelling in such a scenario. So I always like to travel in my own vehicle than a taxi.

MKR – What you would have done if both our cars were not available ?
BPB – I had already thought and enquired about that also. For two of us to tour Gujarat, a Tata Nano is more than enough. And we can get self-driven Nano taxis in many cities. So that is not a problem.

It was 3 pm. We were at Kolhapur. We decided to take a break. So we thought of having the Darshan and taking the blessings of Mahalakshmi of Kolhapur. MKR opened the Google Maps in his mobile and searched for the driving directions to the temple. Oh, it is so easy! We don’t have to ask anyone to locate the temple.


In case if you have not used the Google Maps (or other Maps) so far, let me tell you how to use it. Turn on the GPS and Data Network on your Smartphone (You might need Roaming facility also). Click on Maps App. In the bottom right corner you can find a blue circle with a right arrow in it.

Touch it. You will be taken to a new screen. In the top line, click on “car” picture, indicating that you want the driving directions.

In the 2nd line, “your location” is displayed by default. This is the most helpful feature of this App.

In the third line “choose destination” is shown. Click on it. The keyboard layout appears.

Now type out your destination. Say “Mahalakshmi Mandir, Kolhapur”.

Now you can observe that the Maps show you the driving directions to the temple.


And as you start moving, an arrow keeps on moving along the path, indicating your current location on the road. It also speaks in a loud voice about the turns you have to take at intersections. You may try this out in your daily regular driving route and get used to it.

:cop: But please note:- using mobile in any fashion while driving is prohibited under the law, and is dangerous to everyone.

While I was driving, MKR saw the details of the temple in Wikipedia. See, the life is so simple. We were able to locate the parking lot easily. After parking the car, we were able to have a quick Darshan of the Goddess. This was totally an unscheduled visit.


Mahalaksmi Temple at Kolhapur, Maharashtra

I got this video from the WhatsApp. I don’t know whether it belongs to this temple or not. But there is no problem in watching the video. It gives an insight into how the huge temple lamps are lighted. My salute and thanks to whom-so-ever who has filmed this.

Again we came back to NH4 and proceeded towards Mumbai. Maharashtra highways are famous for Sugarcane and Neera Juices. We stopped at roadside to enjoy a cup of sugarcane juice.


MKR at a roadside Sugarcane Juice Shop

It was nearing 6 pm. We were at Satara. It is around 100 km before Pune. Pune is a big and costly city. We will be wasting lot of time in searching for a suitable lodge. So we decided to halt at Satara. After wasting almost an hour to find a suitable lodge, we finally settled at Hotel Sai Raja, Satara. (02162-237511, Rs 750/). Nothing great about this lodge, but Ok for a night’s halt.

Total distance covered: 753 kms.

Now kindly follow me to Mumbai in my Day 2 story...
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A true traveler does not have a fixed itinerary

Day 2: (19 Jan 2015):

At my Uncle’s home in Mumbai

Early morning we finished our daily chores. We were out of the hotel room by 6.30 am. We had our breakfast in the city itself and resumed our journey towards Mumbai.

As I told yesterday, these highways are famous for Neera Juice also.

{Neera, also called sweet toddy or palm nectar, is a sap extracted from the inflorescence of various species of toddy palms and used to quench thirst. Neera extraction is generally done before sunrise. It is sweet, oyster white in colour, translucent, high in nutritional value, and susceptible to natural fermentation at ambient temperature within a few hours of extraction. Once fermented, Neera becomes toddy.

The drink is popular on account of its high nutritive value, delicious taste and agreeable flavor. Its production requires neither mechanical crushing, as in the case of sugarcane, nor leaching, like beet-root; it is obtained by slicing the spathes of the coconut, sago, and Palmyra palm, and scraping the tender most part, just below the crown. Source: Internet}

The shops serve it chilled. The neera is stored inside a vessel. And commercial ice pieces are kept outside the vessel, touching only the vessel. So the juice remains unadulterated and remains cool. We drank a couple of glasses of them to quench our thirst.


BPB enjoying Neera Juice on the road side

My uncle and his family lives in Mumbai. (Dear Uncle – I am not disclosing your identity here, and you know why). We had planned to stay there for the day. So we again took the help of GMaps to locate his flat. Oh, the life becomes so easy with your own car and a Maps App. We were at his place without asking anyone about the route and without wasting even a minute.

In the evening we went for a short Darshan of Mumbai city. My uncle had some work in Mahindra 4 wheeler Factory. So we also got an opportunity to visit the factory and its assembly line. I had driven Mahindra vehicles for more than 40000 kms. They are rugged, robust and economical. In fact today Mahindra is the only Indian company which manufactures 2, 3 and 4 wheelers.


Inside the assembly line of Mahindra 4 wheeler factory


Mahindra has a wide range of vehicles to offer
After the visit, we went on a drive on Bandra Worli Sea Link.


Bandra - Worli sea link in Mumbai

{The Bandra–Worli Sea Link is a cable-stayed bridge with pre-stressed concrete-steel viaducts on either side that links Bandra in the Western Suburbs of Mumbai with Worli in South Mumbai. The bridge is a part of the proposed Western Freeway that will link the Western Suburbs to Nariman Point in Mumbai’s main business district. The sea-link reduces travel time between Bandra and Worli during peak hours from 60–90 minutes to 20–30 minutes. Source: Internet}

After this, we came back to my uncle’s home. Excellent dinner was prepared by my aunt, and we relished the same. Through this travelogue, I thank my uncle and his family.

It is always better, if your known person resides en route, in these types of long journeys.

Total distance covered: 264 kms.

Come on, let us enter Gujarat on our Day 3 of the tour....
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A true traveler does not have a fixed itinerary

Day 3: (20 Jan 2015):

Entering Gujarat through Valsad, Dadra and Daman

Early morning we left Mumbai and proceeded on NH8 (Mumbai-Ahmadabad-Delhi). The traffic on NH8 is quite high compared to NH4 (Mumbai-Bengaluru-Chennai). Around 8.45 am we crossed Maharashtra check post.


Check post and toll gate on NH8 on Maharashtra Side

GMaps was giving the direction to Sanjan, our first place of visit in Gujarat.


Soon we reached Sanjan, a small town in Valsad district. Frankly speaking, we didn’t even know that we have entered Gujarat; it is so close to the MH border. We asked few localites about the tourist places in the town.

Sir, There is no place of tourist interest here”, came the reply from every one.

This is what happens when you visit any not-so-famous-tourist-place. The local people are so used to any special place in their village/town, that they think that it is not of any tourist importance. I have experienced this throughout India many times.

We went further down the road. And we saw the Sanjan Stambh on the right side. So here we are, at the right place.


Sanjan Stambh

{Sanjan was one of the primary Parsi settlements in India. Sanjan Stambh is a memorial column in the town. It commemorates the arrival of Zoroastrians there many centuries ago – a group of shipwrecked migrants who had fled Muslim persecution after the downfall of the Persian Empire and were welcomed to India by Hindu king Jadi Rana.

It states the date of arrival at 936 CE. It was constructed in the year 1920 to perpetuate memory of the arrival of the Zoroastrians in India. There is a Parsi Dharamshala in the complex. The local Parsis of Sanjan celebrate the arrival of the community by celebrating Sanjan Day in November. The ‘Stambh’ is made of Vadodara granite. Its height, including the leaping flames of fire is 50 feet. The column rests on a square platform. There are 23 decorative rosettes. Source: Internet}


Name plate giving history and other details

There is also a Fire Temple of Parsis, close by.


Parsi Fire temple at Sanjan

Nargol Beach:

From Sanjan we went to Nargol. We went there to see the Agiary (Fire) temple of Parsis. The fire temple was such a small one that it was quite difficult to locate it. We didn’t enter the compound at all. We saw a High School close by.


Tata Wadia High School at Nargol

But we went to the beach. It was a calm and quiet beach. It gave us a glimpse of the Gujarat coastline.

Gujarat beaches and coast are quite different from the rest of India’s beach/coast. I will be giving full details about the same once I start exploring Gujarat.

When I say calm and quiet beach, and not giving you the details, will you remember Steven Spielberg's Jaws movies ? ... Ok, let your curiosity build up.

{The beach is wide and lonely with big tidal water level difference. The beach is rarely visited by locals and is not very crowded. It is an interesting holiday destination and sees a few tourists, who come there to enjoy the isolation and peace of mind. The seaside is part of the Gulf of Cambay (Gulf of Khambhat), which has very clouded waters with almost no visibility. This is possibly because of the large rivers that bring their humus to the sea around the bay. Source: internet}


Children playing cricket in Nargol Beach


Casurina trees on Nargol Beach

Dadra and Nagar Haveli:

From Nargol we went to Dadra and Nagar Haveli, a tiny Union Territory wedged between the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat.


Welcome arch of Dadra and Nagar Haveli

{The two regions – Dadra and Nagar Haveli are separated from each other by a few kilometers. Both lie on the West coast, at the mouth of the Daman Ganga River. Until 1954, this area was under the Portuguese colonial rule. Between 1954 and 1961, it was self-governing. On its integration with the Indian Union in 1961, Silvassa was made its capital. There really isn’t any order of things that you can do. If you are looking for a quick weekend getaway, Silvassa is the place for you. You can be holed up in any one of the many resorts in Silvassa and surrounding areas, but you let yourself loose only in the lush green sights of the surrounding flora and fauna. Source: Internet}

We visited few places in DNH, but found none of them very interesting. Gujarat is a dry state. DNH being a UT, alcohol is (must be) cheap here. So it might be a boozer’s paradise. Pardon me if I am wrong, as it is our wild guess. My aim is not intended to hurt any DNH people.

The places we visited are:

  • Vandhara Udyan at Silvassa is a riverside park. We found nothing special in this Udyan.
  • Tribal Museum – it was closed, probably Tuesday is their weekly holiday. {DNH is predominantly inhabited by the tribals. The museum has displayed their ornaments, musical instruments, fishing and hunting gadgets, agricultural and house hold articles, and several other artifacts. The tribal’s way of life is displayed through life size models, wedding dresses and photographs of eventful ceremonies. The museum is popular with the tourists as it offers the glimpse of the native tribals and their culture at one place. Source: Internet}
  • Tapovan Tourist Complex, Bindrabin: The historic temple of Lord Siva is located (18 Kms from Silvassa and 2 Kms from Khanvel) at Bindrabin. There is nothing much to talk about it.
  • Vanganga Lake and Garden, Dadra: This was also closed when we went there around 1 pm. We had a look of the garden from outside. And again, there is nothing much to talk about it.
    {A beautiful lake garden, Vanganga is located at the entrance of the DNH. This garden is spread over an area of 7.58 hects. The garden created with Central Island is connected with bridges in Japanese style. The major attraction are its water spread framed with tree line, boats, fountains, restaurants and jogging track on an average 4 lakhs tourists visits the garden annually. The garden is very popular with filmmakers and more than 40 Hindi film hit songs have been posturized here. Source:Internet}
Again I repeat, we did not found anything interesting at DNH. Probably we might not have explored the place properly also. Sorry if I am wrong.

We finished our lunch on the way and headed towards Daman.



Welcome arch of Daman

{The second smallest UT in India, Daman and Diu are two parts located near Gujarat in India. Daman lies on the Gujarat coast while Diu is an islet in the southern fringe of Kathiawar peninsula. The history of Daman and Diu dates back to some 2000 years. Diu even finds mention in the Mahabharata, that the Pandava brothers spent a few days here during their fourteen years exile. Owing to its matchless beauty, Daman and Diu were often gifted to victorious kings and princes.

It was a part of the Chowda Rajputs who were defeated by the Waghalas who in turn were thrown out by the Muslims in1330. The region was ruled by the Muslim rulers for the next 200 years. Finally the Portuguese took charge over the land in 1534 and ruled over it for a period of more than 450 years. Later several attempts were made by the rulers of Gujarat to drive out the British but all attempts were futile. In 1559, Daman was finally also annexed by the rulers of Gujarat. The inquisition which was established in Goa, largely contributed to the downfall of Portuguese Empire in the east.

Under the Constitution’s 12th Amendment Act 1962, Goa was included in the first schedule of the Indian Constitution as a territory of Indian Union. By the 57th Amendment in 1987, Daman and Diu was separated from Goa to become a UT. Source: Internet}

We found Daman more interesting than DNH. The places that we saw are:

  • Jampore Beach: Nothing special about it.
  • Somanath Mahadev Temple: As it was afternoon, the temple was closed. In size, the temple is quite small.
  • Moti Daman Fort and Church of Bom Jesus: The huge fort dates back to 16th century. A large number of Portuguese gentry used to reside within the confine of the Fort with their families. Even now people live within the fort premises. The church was built by the Portuguese in 17th century and is famous for their impressive rosewood carvings. Don’t miss this church if you happen to be anywhere near to this place.

Intricate carvings inside Bom Jesus Church


A closer look of the carvings


One more beautiful carvings
We left Daman and went towards Udvada.


{It is renowned for its Zoroastrian (Parsi) Atash Behram. This place of worship is the oldest still-functioning example of its kind, and has established Udvada as a pilgrimage center for Zoroastrians the world over.

An “Atash Behram” (Fire of Victory) is the highest grade of a fire that can be placed in a Zoroastrian fire temple. The establishment and consecration of this fire is the most elaborate of all the grades of fire. It involves the gathering of 16 different types of fire, including lightning, fire from a cremation pyre, fire from trades where a furnace is operated, and fires from the hearths as is also the case for the Atash Adaran. Each of the 16 fires is then subject to a purification ritual before it joins the others. 32 priests are required for the consecration ceremony, which can take up to a year to complete.

The Udvada Atash Behram is the most sacred of the Zoroastrian fire temples in India and the oldest continuously burning fire-temple fire in the world. It is one of nine Atash Behrams worldwide, eight of which are in western India (four in Mumbai, two in Surat, one in Navsari, and the one in Udvada), and one of which is in Yazd, in central Iran. Source: Internet}


Entrance gate of Udvada Atash Behram Fire Temple

We were not allowed inside the temple. When Parsis came to India at Sanjan, the Hindu King asked them not to let Hindus inside their place of worship. So non-Parsis are not allowed inside their temple.

We strolled in the lanes and by-lanes of the village. There are lots of Parsi houses but most of them are vacant. So the whole village looks like a ghostly village.


Deserted streets of Udvada

Then we reached the Museum.

Zoroastrian Heritage Museum:

{Udvada also hosts a Zoroastrian heritage museum, sponsored by the Government of Gujarat. This museum contains summaries of the teachings and beliefs of lord Ahura Mazda, it has a large write up, that tells you about the history of the Parsi’s and Ahura Mazda. It also has explanations and write-ups on the holy ceremony of the Parsis called Navjot. Museum timings: 1000 – 1600 Hrs. Source: Internet}.

As it is a Tuesday, this museum was also closed. We went inside the compound, and found out that an outhouse is open. This outhouse contains the photos, pictures and write-ups about Parsis. Here we got more details about them. If you are interested to know more about Parsis, just check out the internet.

Parsis have co-existed with Indians since many centuries. They are second to none in their patriotism. Some of the famous Sir-Name (family name) of Parsis are: Tatas, Godrejs, Bhabha (Homi Jehangir Bhabha), Wadias, Modys (Russi Mody), Iranis, Engineers, Ghandhis, Manekshaws, Mistris, Contractors, Vyravalas, Narimans, Sorabjees, Kapadias etc. The list is endless. Their population is dwindling. May their tribe increase.

From Udvada we went to Tadkeshwar.

Tadkeshwar Mahadev Mandir:

It is a renowned old temple in the town of Valsad. It is famous for the special type of Shivling (A swayambu stone in sleeping position). The ceiling is open above the Shivling. The sun rays fall over the Shivling all the time during Day. Hence the name ‘Tadkeshwar’. Tadka means Heat, Fire, Sun etc (Remember the dish Dal Tadka?)


Swayambhu Shiva Linga in sleeping position at Tadkeshwar Mahadev Mandir


Vertical panorama view of the Shiva Linga and the top roof-opening

After taking the blessings of Tadkeshwar, we went towards Tithal Beach.

Tithal Beach:

{Tithal beach is one of the most attractive beaches in Gujarat that you will find during your tour of this fascinating state. The plush blue of the Arabian Sea encircles Tithal Beach. You will notice that the sands of the beach are black in color instead of the usual white or golden. Magnificent temples of Shri Sai Baba and Lord BAPS Shri Swami Narayan are also situated here. Many of the appealing characteristics of the beach have made the Government to take action and thus they have built some nice and pretty platforms close to the beach. Source: Internet}

Now something from my side:

On Day 1 of this tour I have told you that, we wasted nearly an hour to find a suitable accommodation. Let me explain a bit more on our preferred choice of lodges.

Every day after the morning chores, we vacate the room and start as early as possible. We start seeing places one after the other. We do this sight-seeing-cum-travelling till sun set. At this point of time, we decide on the place to settle down for the day. Then we search a suitable lodge for staying. We have our dinner, discuss about next day’s itinerary and sleep. So a Lodge for us is only a place to spend one night. We are not much interested in other facilities like TV, swimming pool, Gym etc. We want a decent place to sleep and do the morning chores.

I have followed this on all my tours so far. And in most of my tours, each day I used to waste around 1 hour searching for a suitable lodge.

But on first day in Gujarat (3rd day of the tour), a visit to the Swami Narayan Mandir (SNM) gave us a big breakthrough in our tour.

It was a turning point in any of my tours. While MKR was taking sun set, beach and Mandir photos, I went to the Mandir guest house.

I told the reception: “We have come all the way from Bengaluru on a Gujarat Yatra, and we want an accommodation for only one night. We will vacate the room as early as possible in the morning; and definitely not later than 7 am”.

He heeded to our request and gave us a room. The room rent was well within our budget. (I am not giving the rent here, because it depends on the type of the room and not on the number of persons occupying it). It was a neat and clean room. It had separate toilet and bath room. There was facility to dry the cloths also. And hot water was available 24 hours. What else we want to spend a night. Added to this, the dinner and breakfast were also free for the inmates.

Without worrying for anything else, we settled in the room. We visited the Mandir bookstall, and noted down all the branches of BAPS Swami Narayan Mandir in Gujarat.

Later we had Darshan of the closing down Pooja, and had dinner. It was our first typical Gujarati dinner. It was neat, clean, hygienic, filling and tasty.


BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir at Tithal Beach


Inside the Mandir Sanctum sanctorum


Sunset at Tithal Beach, as seen from SNM building

With great satisfaction of having started our Gujarat tour on a happy note, we called it a day.

For more details on BAPS Swami Narayan Mandir, you may look here: http://www.baps.org/


The day’s route map from Google Maps

Total distance covered: 310 kms.

Follow me to visit Mahatma's Dandi, Tata’s birth place, Golden Bridge etc......
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Be a Good person but Don't try to Prove.
2 Lacs KM on Bike & 3.5 Lacs KM in 4 wheeler. You are a real traveller. Awesome.:)
Welcome to BCMT.


Active Member
Heartiest Congratulations.
I don't think any other traveller has recorded such a detailed introduction of his/her tour.
I really appreciate your breezy style of prose and down-to-earth approach.
Will closely follow your blog.

Shekar Reddy

Explore India
Welcome the duo to the BCMT. 5.5 Lac Kms of Traveling is really a great achievement. It is really a Truncated log. Little more photos and details will add nice flavor. Are those carvings in Church of Bom Jesus are iin stone or in lime mortar?