India – Gujarat&Kutch Textiles and Kite Festival January 2013

This Tour is Sold Out

Explore the essence of Indian colour and texture in the 5000 yr-old culture of Gujarat and Kutch with EYHO Tours and Arti Chandaria – iarts Project

Exquisite Textiles ۞ Monuments and Palaces ۞ Culinary Experiences

Uttarayan Kite Festival ۞ Modhera Dance Festival 

GUJARAT & KUTCH TEXTILES AND HERITAGE TOUR

14 days – January 10 – 23, 2013

Optional add-on 3 nights GOA January 23-25

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Think you know India? Think again.

In Gujarat & Kutch’s textiles and embroideries

monuments and landscapes

cuisine and  festivals lies the undiscovered gem of travel to India

Immerse yourself in desert tribal villages and vibrant cities that form the warp and weft of contemporary India. Explore millennia-old textile arts. Catch kite-fever in Ahmedabad as the skies erupt with the exuberance of a million kites.

Experience the incomparable hospitality of heritage hotels and palaces. Engage in lively discussions with local artists. Marvel at breathtaking monuments such as the UNESCO World Heritage designated 1500-yr old Queen’s Step Well and the Sun Temple of Modhera. Partake in culinary demos in palace kitchens and share rustic meals in desert abodes.

Kutch, India – Salt Desert Tribes

Travel with insiders Arti Chandaria and Shila Desai in a small group. Live the gentle, ancient, and vibrant culture that encompasses Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy and forms the petri dish of India’s fastest growing economic region.

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About EYHO Tours (Eat Your Heart Out Tours)

From the springboard of a wildly successful North India Cooking with Maharajas tour organized for her writing group, Shila Desai has led EYHO-ers on exotic journeys with a difference. Anyone can sightsee. But travel with an insider to where a country’s people live and aspire, and a tourist becomes a traveller, touched forever.

Through extensive local connections, each trip is meticulously researched to capture the most imaginative itineraries. Groups are small. Accommodations are unique. Experiences range from meals with peasant families, arts workshops, discovering hidden villages, sipping cocktails with royals, celebrating festivals…the list goes on.

EYHO Tours — anything BUT banal!

Read about EYHO Tours

Taking ease at Modhera Sun Temple

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About Arti Chandaria- iarts Project

Arti is a passionate art enthusiast. Her first job was with her family’s hand-woven textile business. In her spare time she scoured the tiny shops of Mumbai’s busy streets for art. Among her many talents, Arti is a qualified interior designer trained at the Taj Group of Hotels’ interior design department. One of her assignments was the Maharaja of Udaipur’s Shivnivas Palace, featured in the James Bond film Octopussy.

In Canada, Arti has been a patron, advocate and volunteer on the South Asian cultural scene for twenty-five years. Instrumental in groundbreaking initiatives such as the permanent presence of South Asia galleries at The Royal Ontario Museum, she has worked on the Boards of various cultural institutions. She was also the force behind the South Asia exhibit at the Textile Museum Canada in 2008. For her tireless efforts she received international recognition and awards, including the Queens Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002. She publishes artsNOW, an e-newsletter on art events. Her recent initiative, iarts Project, brings contemporary art from India to the forefront. Her goal is to build a community of art lovers and collectors.

Arti Chandaria – iarts Project …your access to art from India

Ahir Tribal Embroidery

On this tour, allow Arti’s expert eye and sensibilities to introduce you to:

  • a printing workshop with celebrated designer Indira Broker using ancient block printing techniques for your own handloom silk
  • the ancient tradition of double-ikat weaving, now in the hands of only 3 families
  • Chandaben Shroff, who, through a 3,500-strong women’s co-operative in Kutch, revived sixteen tribal embroidery styles and founded the iconic textile boutique, Shrujan.
  • off the beaten track tribal communities that continue the legacy of Mashru, Ahir, Mutwa, and Bandhini embroidery, dyeing, and weaving techniques
  • the ultimate in textiles and handicrafts shopping – the best India has to offer

Itinerary

DAY 1 – JAN 10

ARRIVAL IN MUMBAI. MEET & GREET UPON ARRIVAL. TRANSFER TO HOTEL SUN N SAND, A MUMBAI BOLLYWOOD FAVOURITE
http://www.sunnsandhotel.com/

OPTIONAL EXCURSION TO BANDRA FOR (HYGENICALLY PREPARED) STREET FOOD

DAY 2 – JAN 11   (B,L,D)

MUMBAI-VADODARA 9.35 – 10.35AM FLIGHT TRANSFER TO HOTEL. LUNCH.

AFTERNOON: PRINTING WORKSHOP WITH DESIGNER INDIRA BROKER $
Using ancient block print techniques, design your own tussar silk stole; followed by shopping in Vadodara’s vibrant bazaars
http://www.thehindubusinessline.in/2003/02/26/stories/2003022600401800.htm

The Gateway Hotel (Taj) at Akota Gardens

http://www.thegatewayhotels.com/akotagardensvadodara/gallery.aspx

DAY 3 – JAN 12  (B)

MORNING: VISIT LAXMI VILAS PALACE AND MAHARAJA FATEH SINGH MUSEUM

DRIVE 1.5 HR TO AHMEDABAD.

One of India’s most vibrant cities, Ahmedabad is the heartland of India’s textile culture. Its Mughal past left a fascinating legacy in the form of walled cities called pols. Mahatma Gandhi launched his ahimsa (non-violence) movement from Ahmedabad.

VISIT GANDHI ASHRAM

Gandhi Ashram

VISIT HUSSAIN GUFA. A whimsical and engaging piece of modern architecture, this subterranean art gallery is the combined genius of world-renowned painter M.F. Husain and architect B.V.Doshi

NIGHT HERITAGE WALK. Guided walk past monuments and havelis in the walled old city to the bustling food court of Manek Chowk. Drummers herald the closing of the village gates in a 600-yr old tradition.

OVERNIGHT AT HERITAGE HOUSE OF MANGALDAS GIRDHARDAS

DAY 4 – JAN 13                        (B)

DAY IN AHMEDABAD.

EARLY MORNING HERITAGE WALK. Old City tour of the fascinating architecture of pols and havelis

MORNING VISIT TO CALICO MUSEUM. One of the world’s most renowned textile museums, it boasts artefacts spanning a period of 3-4 centuries from all over India and neighbouring regions in Asia.

EVENING: UTTARAYAN (KITE FESTIVAL) EVE. Catch the excitement of a city gone kite-mad at the Patang (Kite) Bazaar in preparation for tomorrow’s festivities. In Hindu mythology, Uttarayan marks a major change in wind direction and celebrates the awakening of slumbering gods.

OVERNIGHT AT HERITAGE HOUSE OF MANGALDAS GIRDHARDAS

DAY 5 – JAN 14  (B)

AHMEDABAD. CELEBRATE UTTARAYAN. Grab your kite and head to the rooftops. The sky turns into a rainbow-hued battleground as a million kites float upward in a joyous festival of rivalry and revelry. Sample traditional delicacies. At night, lit boxed kites illuminate the sky and welcome the dawn.

Watch A Battle of One Million Kites by Prashant Bhargav, director of Patang

OVERNIGHT AT HERITAGE HOUSE OF MANGALDAS GIRDHARDAS

DAY 6 – JAN 15                        (B, D)

DRIVE 7 HR TO HODKA, KUTCH.

An experience steeped in tribal dance, architecture, food, and music, Hodko Village is the endogenous award-winning project of rural communities that preserves the heritage of Kutch.

Sham E Sharhad Eco Resort

OVERNIGHT AT SHAM-E-SHARHAD ECO RESORT

DAY 7 – JAN 16                        (B, L, D)

SUNRISE DRIVE TO DHORDO SALT DESERT

A monsoonal wetland, this saline expanse dries up into a desolate and surreal desert, interspersed with small islands that support flamingos and other wildlife.

VISIT DHORDO VILLAGE FOR MUTWA EMBROIDERY BY THE HOSPITABLE BANNI.

RETURN TO HODKO VILLAGE. Enjoy traditional music, arts, and handicrafts.

OVERNIGHT AT SHAM-E-SHARHAD ECO RESORT

DAY 8 – JAN 17                        (B, L)

DRIVE 2 HR TO MANDVI VIA BHUJ

Mandvi is famous for its clean beaches and 400yr-old ship building industry.

Watch Mandvi and ship building

VISIT VIJAY VILAS PALACE. LUNCH AT MANDVI BEACH RESORT.

VISIT MUNDRA TO SEE TRADITIONAL TIE-AND-DYE, OR BANDHNI, BEING CRAFTED

Tie-n-Dye (Bandhni) Heaven

RETURN TO BHUJ – DRIVE 1 HR.

DINNER AND OVERNIGHT AT HOTEL MANGALAM 

DAY 9 – JAN 18                        (B)

VISIT TO SHRUJAN www.shrujan.org/about,shrujan

Following a serious drought in 1968, Shrujan, a non-profit co-operative was established to help 3,500 rural women supplement their income through embroidery skills. The beautiful campus is traditionally built on an environmentally conscious design.

OPTIONAL EMBROIDERY WORKSHOP OR CULINARY DEMO $. LUNCH $

VISIT BHUJODI FOR TRADITIONAL HANDLOOM WEAVING. Glimpse Rabari mud artwork of tribal homes.

SHOPPING AT ASHAPURA CRAFT PARK.

TRADITIONAL DINNER WITH TRIBAL WEAVING FAMILY $

OVERNIGHT AT HOTEL MANGALAM

DAY 10 – JAN 19                     (B,D)

EARLY MORNING DRIVE 5HR TO DHANETI. LUNCH AND AHIR TRIBAL EMBROIDERY

Watch Video of Ahir embroidery at Dhaneti

Ahir Woman

AJRAKPUR FOR AJRAK PRINTING Using traditional dyes, Ajrakpur master artisans practise traditional hand block printing in the resist technique and have been awarded honorary Ph.Ds. from major western universities.Read “The Universe in a Textile”

TRANSFER TO DASADA. DINNER AND OVERNIGHT AT RAAN RIDERS

DAY 11 – JAN 20                     (B, L, D)

WILD ASS SANCTUARY SAFARI. The Wild Ass Sanctuary covers 5,000sq km and protects approximately 4,000 endangered wild ass which are similar to the wild horse. The sanctuary wetlands also host migratory birds in the winter months.

EVENING: MODHERA SUN TEMPLE AND DANCE FESTIVAL. Built in 1026AD during the Solanki reign, this stunning temple of 108 shrines allows the sun to penetrate its innermost sanctum. During the pre-eminent Dance Festival, the temple transforms into a living museum-amphitheatre, showcasing Indian classical dance against its original backdrop.

RETURN TO DASADA. OVERNIGHT AT RAAN RIDERS

DAY 12 – JAN 21                      (B, L, D)

MORNING DRIVE 2.15 HR TO PATAN. The ancient city of Patan founded in 746AD is a quaint, charismatic town famous for its patola saris.

VISIT PATOLA WEAVING FAMILY.  One of the world’s only three families that uphold the tradition of double-Ikkat silk weaving, which produces the world’s richest silk.

Rare Double-ikkat Silk Weaving

LUNCH AT JAIN COMMUNITY HALL

VISIT RANI NI VAV. Built in 1063AD, this UNESCO World Heritage-designated step-well is a subterranean treasure of over 800 elaborately sculpted sandstone images.

MASHRU WEAVING.

DRIVE 2.5 HR TO POSHINA. OVERNIGHT AT DARBARGARH PALACE HOTEL

DAY 13 – JAN 22                      (B, L, D)

DRIVE 2.5 HR TO LUNAWADA PALACE

CULINARY DEMO AND LUNCH as guests of His Highness Siddharasinh Solanki whose grandfather Maharaja Digvijaya Singh was an acclaimed gourmand and author of Cooking Delights of the Maharajas

DRIVE 2.5HR TO AHMEDABAD. TRANSFER TO HOTEL.

FAREWELL DINNER AT VISHALA. A traditional Indian dining experience in a village-like setting, food is served on leaf plates and accompanied by folkdance, music, and puppetry.

OVERNIGHT AT DIWAN’S BUNGALOW – NEEMRANA HOTELS

DAY 14 – JAN 23              (B)

RETURN FLIGHT MUMBAI FOR ONWARD INTERNATIONAL CONNECTION

Or FLIGHT MUMBAI-GOA

Add-on           OPTION: GOA 3 nights JAN 23-25

A solitary Portuguese outpost for 500 years, Goa is a treasure of colonial architecture, bucolic buffalo-paddies, and delectable cuisine. Swaying palms, white sands, and sparkling waters make up a glorious slice of India for the ultimate wrap-up to a fantastic trip.

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COST: excluding international flights – 14 days fully escorted tour

Contracted through Tourism Board of India Member

10 – 15 Pax: USD 2075=00 Per Person 

Rabari peasant woman

Single Supplement: USD 820=00. Max 20

The above quote is per person in US Dollars. Included:

# Complete road transport which includes all transfers, tours and excursions using 01 A/Con Mini Bus/Large Coach as applicable

# Flight Mumbai – Vadodara

# Accommodation on twin sharing basis as per meal plan indicated B, L, D

# Services of an accompanying English speaking guide

# All entrance fees at monuments.

# Dinner at Vishala at Ahmedabad.

# 01 Jeep Safari to Rann of Kutch

Any services other than those above are not included. Nominal extra charges ($) will apply to cover costs of certain workshops and meals other than indicated above.  While we will make every effort to stay with this itinerary, occasionally we may need to substitute with equally good or better options.

OPTION: 3 NIGHTS GOA      including flight Ahmedabad-Goa-Mumbai/transfers

www.parkhyatt-goa.com(Or similar/better grade) B, D                  USD 824=00pp

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PLEASE NOTE IMPORTANT INFORMATION RE TIMING:

  • For group rates on international flights, we book 3 months ahead of departure date i.e mid-Oct.
  • Canadian nationals travelling to India require visas. Since the busiest travel months are October to January, the Consulate tends to get busy, especially with holiday closures. We recommend obtaining visas by early November
  • For further information, please contact
  • shilkee26@gmail.com
  • arti@iartsproject.com

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About Shila Desai

Conceptualiser of Unpackaged Travels (www.eyhotours.com). Writer. Culinary diva when someone else does the dishes.
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One Response to India – Gujarat&Kutch Textiles and Kite Festival January 2013

  1. Anonymous says:

    just awesome and every detail thought of and so well organised .Reading this vivid description gave me the feeling of being with you on the trip

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