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Kutch revealed for a tourist: White Rann, Little Rann, Great Rann

White Rann

This popular tourism spot of Gujarat is divided into two smaller parts: The Great Rann of Kutch and the Little Rann of Kutch. Contrary to popular belief, the Little Rann is actually a part of the Greater Rann, and not a different entity. While the Great Rann is located in the Thar Desert Region, it is actually a salt desert, the largest in the world. The place is ideal for backpackers and wanderers who wish to explore this area between the Gulf of Kutch and the Indus. The White Rann is simply another name for the region as whole.

What’s to be found in the Great Rann? The region is full of grasslands and salt deserts. The various species that you might chance upon in these grasslands are Apulda, Cenchrus along with the occasional dry, thorny shrubs and cactus. The region is also rich as far as the wildlife is concerned, being a home to the Indian Wild Ass, the sanctuary for the same can be found in the Little Rann. Other animals discovered in this region are hyenas, sambhar, jackals, chinkara, wild boar, nilgai, Indian hare, and pale hedgehog.

Spectacular birds have also made their homes in the White Rann, the most prominent of those being the Greater Flamingo, which can be seen flocking in this area in large numbers.  Other birds found in plenty in this region include the cranes, flamingos and pelicansto, the floricans and the bustards.  Majestic eagles and regal owls have reigned over the area for a long time now.

The most exciting time to visit this region is during the Rann Utsav in the months of November–December, a major cultural events that sees the entire district celebrating. The Rann Utsav is the home of all tradesmen, traditional performers and artistic displays of handicrafts coming together in a beautiful confluence.  The carnival is a sight to behold and the entire region is bathed in the spirit of celebration, making the Rann Utsav a must see.

For the layman, the area known as Little Rann is a salt marsh located in the Rann of Kutch whose white appearance has led to travellers referring to it as the White Rann. This area is home to most of the Wild Ass Sanctuaries and the biosphere reserve in this region has led to it gaining recognition as a world heritage site.