India // Gujarat //

Little Rann Wild Ass Sanctuary

Spanning 4850 square kilometres, the Little Rann Wild Ass Sanctuary, a vast salt-encrusted desert plain that becomes inundated during the rains (July–Sept), is home to an abundance of wildlife, including the endangered Indian wild ass. Usually seen in loosely knit herds, this handsome chestnut-brown-and-white member of the horse family is capable of running very fast. The sanctuary is also home to wolves, foxes, jackals, jungle and desert cats, nilgai and blackbuck antelopes and the chinkara gazelle. Large flocks of flamingo, pelicans and winter-visiting cranes can be seen at Bajana Lake; October to March is the time to see the migratory birds.

The sanctuary headquarters is at Dhrangadhra in Saurashtra, but most tourist facilities are at Dasada, a six-hour bus-ride east from Bhuj and 33km from Viramgam (on the Bhuj–Ahmedabad train line). From Dasada you can rent a jeep (around Rs1500/day) and guide to take a tour of the sanctuary. Entrance fees are paid at the entrance to the sanctuary near Bajana village, thirty minutes’ drive from Dasada.