Mandvi is a small beach town located around 56 km south of the district headquarters of Bhuj in the state of Gujarat. The town has a 400-year-old shipbuilding industry, which till date builds small wooden ships and was once a thriving port in the region.
There are multiple ways of reaching the beach town of Mandvi from Bhuj. The first option is to take the local government bus from the bus stand. These buses leave every 30 minutes and is the most economical way of reaching Mandvi. The second option is to hop onto one of the many shared jeeps which are parked near the file station which is close to the bus stop.
These jeeps are slightly costlier than the buses but are a preferred option by the locals since they ply non-stop from start to finish unlike the government buses which have multiple stops along the way.
The government bus and the shared jeeps both drop travellers at Mandvi bridge which is at the entrance of the town. Travellers have to then hire a tuk-tuk (auto-rickshaw) to the beach. It takes around 10-15 minutes to reach the beach from the bridge and one will drive past the famous shipbuilding yard of the town. At any given time of the year, you will see plenty of small wooden ships at various stages of construction.
On reaching the beach, the first thing one will notice is plenty of food stalls all along the entrance. The beach is very crowded on weekends and public holidays since this is the only seashore for people in Kutch. Even though the sand is black and the water is not the cleanest, it still attracts a huge crowd.
Once at the beach, travellers can either opt for a joy ride on a camel or horse, try riding a jet ski or have fun on a banana boat. For those who are interested in photography, they can walk along the shore towards the windmills to get a close up of the whole farm.
Eating options at the beach are in plenty from chaat, corn and fruits to the local dhabeli which is a must-try while at the beach. There are also a couple of restaurants adjacent to the beach which serve some really good mouth-watering vegetarian thali which is a must-have while at the beach.
Accommodation options in Mandvi are limited to a handful of guest houses and hotels. These guest houses are located in the Bazaar area and is a short tuk-tuk ride away from the beach. The hotels near the beach are more suited to luxury travellers and are not ideal for backpackers because of their steep pricing.
The best time to visit Mandvi beach is during the winter months from November to February, when the evening temperature is pleasant and a visit to the beach is fun. Mandvi beach is an ideal place to visit for anyone looking for a day outing away from the city of Bhuj.
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