In our last two blogs we visited places of Gujarat and Kerala. How can we forget our own district Kachchh?
2001 Earth quake was like a deadly shock to many Kachchis. Many people lost their lives in span of moments. Many people lost their loved ones, many have lost their homes, the entire colonies were lost in fact! Some villages were ruined altogether. But everyone knows about the strength that our people showed. After earthquake it was said that Kachchh is pushed back on time zone by about a decade. The same Kachchh is twinkling on international map nowadays because of its recent developments in tourism. In previous days when we talked to our outsider friends they didn’t even know where kachchh is located, whereas now they invite their NRI friends to visit our district, everything thanks to tourism. For today we will talk about a place ‘Chadva-Rakhal’ about which many of our Kachchhis also not well aware.
In past the kings of dynasties declared 45 forest areas to be reserved which were known as ‘Rakhiyal’. After freedom these reserves became their private assets. But they are open for visitors. Chadvarakhal is near village ‘Samatra’ which is hardly 15 to 17Km away from Bhuj, still people don’t know much about these places.
Out of 45 reserves ChadvaRakhal is the biggest. A very beautiful pond called ‘Pragsar’ is situated in premises of this Rakhiyal. Interesting thing is along with fishes, crocodiles are easily spotted here! The beauty of this place is nature is conserved in its raw form. Old trees say the stories of decades.. In a nice evening the voices of cracking of fallen dry leaves, chirping of birds and during all these a ‘Nilgay’ suddenly passes by, view of Sunshine on pond water and crocodiles lying on bank for feeling warmth…. All these bring you to some other world. Top of all as the place has not yet been very famous crowds are not yet disturbing the forest moods by dumping plastic, garbage, etc.
The entry ticket here is 60Rs per person (receipt is not given though, so ticket amount keeps changing) there is no parking charge. For taking care of property, owner has appointed family, they stay inside the property. They are friendly enough to share about leopards found around!
In rainy season or soon after rainy season looks lash green, though any season is good to visit. Peacocks are easily found and heard here.
Yes, the place is a place where good company will be fun. Though place is vast enough, so peace loving people can enjoy peace also.
The road from Samatra to Rakhal is sort of ‘No man’s land’ that makes car or bike ride an experience. Place is also ideal for some live barbeque. If you go with family and kids please bring some snacks or edibles as nothing will be available. Yes, one more request is not to litter the place.
If you spend an early morning or late evening there then time will flow like water in the pond.
Important instruction for non Kachchis – It is a saying that, ‘shiyade sorath bhalo, unade Gujarat, chomase vagad bhalo asanjo kachchdo baremaas’, (during winter sorath is good, in summer its Gujarat, during monsoon vagad is best but our kachchh is best at all times of the year..) but if you are tourist then the best time to visit our district is winter. Internationally well famed ‘Ranotsav’ is also celebrated during moths of winter.
Last but not the least, “kachchh nahidekha to kuchnahidekha..”