Friday, October 9, 2009
Kandla / Gandhidham – a modern city of Gujarat
57 km South East to Bhuj is Kandla. Maharao of Kutch founded the city to rehabilitate refugees from Sindh after the partition in 1947. At the Kandla Creek, the ashes of Gandhiji had been immersed. Since then the city was named Gandhidham.
Gandhidham is a planned city at Kandla Port. The blue print had been prepared by a team of architects from America. Gandhidham by virtue of being a planned city is attractive to the tourists. On 10 January 1952, former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru laid the foundation stone of this city and one of the most important modern ports in India. In the millennium year it has been renamed as Port of the New Millennium. The adjacent Kandla city is a trade free zone. Comprising of 15 dockyards, it is one of the chief export-import outlets of India. The 2001 earthquake had devastated the city. There are the Gandhi Samadhi and Shiva Temple. The deity in the Shiva Temple is not a phallus but in the form of Nirbasteswar Shiva.
Transport to and from Kandla / Gandhidham
Airport is 6 km from the city, Minibus, taxi, auto services are available.
2081 Jan Satabdi Express daily except Sunday at 16-40 leaves Ahmedabad reaches Gandhidham at 22-15
9031 Mumbai-Bhuj Kutch Express leaves Mumbai Central at 17-10, Ahmedabad at 2-20, reaches at 8-05 at Gandhidham reaching Bhuj at 10-05.
9601 Bandra-Bhuj Sayajinagari Express leaves Bandra at 14-50 reaching Ahmedabad at 23-45, next day Viramgam at 1-10, Gandhidham at 6-35 and reaches Bhuj at 8-15.
On day 2 3 4 7 - 4311 Berili-Bhuj Ala Hajrat Express leaves Berili at 5-30 reaches Delhi at 11-25, Jaipur at 17-35, Ahmedabad next day at 6-10, Dhrangadhra at 9-02 and Bhuj at 14-45 via Gandhidham.
9501 Anand Express daily from Rajkot leaves at 16-45 reaches Gandhidham at 21-30, Bhuj at 23-25.
1092 Pune-Bhuj Express leaves Pune at 19-40 on Tuesday reaches Ahmedabad next day at 8-55, Dhrangadhra at 11-35, Gandhidham at 16-05 and Bhuj at 17-15.
6336 Nagercoil-Gandhidham Express leaves Nagercoil at 11-45 reaches Kollam at 14-35, Ernakulam town at 18-25, Margaon next day at 9-35, Ahmedabad on the 3rd day at 7-20, Gandhidham at 14-45.
111 Pass train leaves Viramgam at 5-30 reaches Dhrangadhra at 8-02, Gandhidham at 14-20, Bhuj at 16-45.
From Ahmedabad, Viramgam is 65 km; Viramgam to Dhrangadhra is 65 km, Dhrangadhra to Gandhidham is 170 km, Gandhidham to Bhuj is 59 km. Mumbai to Gandhidham is 792 km.
From Gandhidham at 6-05 and 14-50 Pass train runs to Bhuj
From Palanpur Junction on Abu Road-Mahesana railway, at 10-00 and 18-55 Pass trains ply on Palanpur-Gandhidham meter gauge rail for Gandhidham,
2082 Jan Satabdi Express leaves Gandhidham at 5-00 daily, except Sunday, reaches-Ahmedabad at 10-25
9502 Anand Express leaves Bhuj at 5-35, from Gandhidham at 7-15, reaches Rajkot at 11-55
9602 Sayajinagari Express leaves Bhuj at 20-30, 22-20 from Gandhidham, reaches Mumbai Central next day at 13-45 via Dhrangadhra-Viramgam-Ahmedabad
Bus links have been established along NH 8-A from other cities of the state to Gandhidham, Bhuj and Kandla. Frequent bus and share taxis are available from Gandhidham to Bhuj and Kandla.
Share taxi is available en route from Bhuj to Rajkot. GSTC's buses have regular service to Ahmebadad, Palanpur, Jamnagar (8 buses in 7 hrs), Porbandar (3 buses 10 hrs), Mahesana (6 buses 8 hrs), Jaisalmir (1 bus 14 hrs) from Bhuj. Whole night journey by private deluxe buses with berth for sleeeping are on this route. Private deluxe buses also ply for Dwarka and Mumbai.
In Gandhidham the bus stand is located at three minutes walking distance from railway station.
Hotels at Kandla / Gandhidham
STD Code of Gandhidham: +91 2836
For lodging there are Railway Retiring Room, Kandla Port Trust Guest House, PWD Rest House, Dharamshala, Aram Guest House.
Hotel Chandan, Plot 18, Ward-12A, NH-1 Ph: 229096;
Hotel Madhuban, Plot-22, Sector-9, Tagore Road, opposite KPT Office, Gandhidham-370201 Ph: 222216.
Hotel Desert Palace, 98 Golpadar, near Airport-1 Ph: 223726,
Business Inn, 29-30, Sector-9 Ph: 221921,
Sayaji Hotel, plot 64, Sector 8, near Town Hall Ph: 255266,
Hotel Natraj, opposite bus stand;
Hotel Gokul, near-bus std and various other hotels.
This article is originally published in Travel India and India Study Channel