Bhuj is a historical city. It has a long history of kings and empires. It was named for a big snake, Bhujang, that lived on a hill that was later named Bhujiyo Hill. Bhuj has a population of approx 200,000. It serves as a stopover to explore the remote areas of Kutch. Bhuj can also serve as base for day trips to Dhordo (white Rann of Kutch with luxurious tents to spend nights), Khavda, Kala Dungar, Mandvi (sea beach with wind farm), Kera (very ancient ruins of lord Vishnu and Shiva temple), Mata No Madh (goddess Aai Ashapura temple), Narayan Sarovar, Koteshwar (ancient Hindu lord Shiva temple on the shore of the Arabian Sea), and Haji Pir (tomb).
There are connections by state highways and national highways from all major places of Gujarat.
Circulation is possible via auto-rickshaw (tuk-tuk) and guides with vehicles. Bargaining is a must as they will quote high if they see you are a first timer. If you have time you can also hire a bicycle and roam around the city.
- 1 Aaina Mahal (Palace of Mirrors), in compound of Pragmahal Palace, Darbargadh Chowk. The literal translation of Aaina Mahal is an apt one. A beautiful palace now renovated after the massive earthquake in 2001. It also houses a handicraft museum where crafts from various parts of Kutch have been placed.
- 2 Bhujiyo Hill. A fort made by ancient rulers to protect the city. Now it is open for common public to see. A sure shot favorite if photography is your interest. You can get a nice panoramic view of whole city from here.
- 3 Chhatardi (Cenotaphs), Near Hamirsar Lake. The cenotaphs of rulers is a picturesque place. Featured in Bollywood movies, the place and garden around it makes a nice time.
- 4 Hamirsar Lake (in the heart of the city,). A 450-year-old artificial lake built during the reign of the Jadeja Dynasty, the lake is quite a site to sit and chill out while roaming around it.
- 5 Pragmahal Palace. The palace of rulers of Kutchh region. Maharao Pragmalji initiated the creation of this palace. This Gothic styled structure is a must visit. Opens at 10AM.
- 6 Kutch Museum, Ghanshyam Nagar (opposite Hamirsar Lake). The museum is located on the scenic bank of lake Hamirsar and has the largest collection of inscriptions from the period of Western Satrap rule during the early centuries CE. Established in 1887, Kutch Museum is the oldest museum of Gujarat.
- Shree Swaminayan Temple, Near Hamirsar lake. A magnificent architectural masterpiece built from marble a stunning place to visit. The all white structure of the temple is sure to take breath away.
- 7 Tapakeshwari. A temple near small hills. Climb and see the beauty of the surroundings.
- Rock Garden.
Bhuj is mostly famous for its handicrafts. You can get variety of clothes and other things having this kind of art work. And don't forget to buy sweets - try Khavada, it has branches at many place in bhuj.
- Bhujodi Village (On the way from Bhuj to Gandhidham). This is the handicraft village. People make the crafts and garments at their own home and sell there only. You can even see the process of weaving the garments. A fantastic value for money place to buy the items.
- Shrujan, Post. Bhujodi, Near Bhuj (12 km on Bhuj Gandhidham Highway). For good quality embroidery products of Kutch
Most places are vegetarian. You can find non-veg food in big hotels or in the outskirts of city. There are many good restaurants like Neelam, KBN, Anando, Green Rock, jiya, sankalp etc. You can also find local stalls for many Gujarati, Chinese, and South Indian spices on the roads, especially on a hospital road. Some of them well known for their delicious taste are Joshi stall, Khavda stall, and Maharaj stall.
The local dish called Double Roti (also known as Dabeli) is famous, and is very easy to prepare. You can carry its 'masala' to prepare back to your home.
Being a dry state, consumption of alcohol is generally illegal, unless it is accompanied by an appropriate permit. If you want to have alcoholic beverages, you will need to get a permit from competent authority to carry liquor. Better you enjoy local drinks. You can have butter milk made from curd. you can also enjoy locally available milk. On the outward main road parallel to the Shroff market and very close to the bus station is Bharat juice center which serves milkshakes, fresh juices and ice creams.
Hotels and Guest houses of different budget are available within the walled-city near places and the lake as well as in the outskirts.
Bhuj being one of the very few main towns of Kutch region serves as a central access to most of the remote regions of Kutch. Some of the places worth a visit as a tourist like Khavda, Dhordo (famous for its white desert and luxurious stay in a well maintained tents to spend nights in picturesque full-moon. Kalo Dungar is a Magnetic Hill with a picturesque view of the horizon. Downsouth is the shipping port town Mandvi which house a beautiful palace known as Vijay Vilas palace and a calm beach along the wind-farm.