Welcome to the oyster of India. The pearl that awaits you, formed over the ages, is not the perfectly round and smooth one on a string, painted in royal portraits, but a rough, bustling, noisy one. Layer after layer has been laid on what used to be a tiny fishing settlement: pearl fishing, in one of the largest fisheries in the world; bandhani, the traditional fabric dyeing technique; master silver artisans; a series of Jams or rulers, who brought prosperity, glory in the world of cricket, and a Nature Conservation Park; an overflow of holy places for worship of different faiths; and a crumbling old city full of stories.
At the center of the pearl city waits an island fort in a lake, where humans enjoying kulfi share space with flocks of birds enjoying the breeze. At the sea, where oil refineries quickly gobble up the coastline, waits the spectacular and heroic Marine National Park and Sanctuary, the last vestiges of protection from human expansion.