What’s more exciting than a jungle trip? Staying amidst the jungle with a close proximity to wildlife. While a safari through the dense woods is exciting and adventurous, staying in a wildlife resort brings with it its own set of charms.
India’s exotic wildlife is legendary, and requires no introduction. The various national parks and wildlife sanctuaries hosting them are repositories of natural wealth, and are every bit as fascinating. The resorts located amid these places provide the best of both worlds – flora and fauna, even while being equipped with modern amenities and comforts. This blog brings you the 15 wildlife resorts in India worth visiting.
The Oberoi Vanyavilas, Rajasthan
The Oberoi Vanyavilas, situated less than ten minutes from Ranthambore Tiger Reserve, offers its visitors the opportunity of witnessing the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger, while being surrounded by the luxuries of an Oberoi experience. Spread across twenty acres of landscaped gardens, it is rich with indigenous birds and plants.
Its architecture has been designed to resemble a “haveli.” The observation tower available here offers guests incredible views of the bordering jungle and an opportunity to spot wildlife at the nearby watering hole. Further, the magnificent indoor and al fresco main restaurant serves a mix of Rajasthani specialties, pan-Indian and continental dishes. The luxury spa, along with the sunlit central courtyard only serve to embellish the experience here.
Kanha Earth Lodge, Kanha National Park
Kanha Earth Lodge, located amid a natural forest sprawling 16 acres, consists of 2 luxury bungalows with attached bathrooms and large verandahs, and offers the finest wildlife experience in Madhya Pradesh. All the cottages present here are inspired by traditional Gond architecture which enable them to blend in effortlessly with their surroundings.
While the bedrooms here are equipped with modern facilities and offer amazing forest views, the infinity pool, set between the Mahua trees, seem to merge into Kanha’s forests with its infinity edges. The outdoor barbecue and bush dining areas, make dining as exciting as ever. The interiors of the souvenir shop here is decorated by traditional Gond tribal artifacts. The experienced team of naturalists present conduct birding tours while providing a holistic wildlife experience.
Dhikala Forest Lodge, Jim Corbett National Park
Dhikala Forest Lodge, located in the core area of Corbett national park, is the perfect place for viewing the fascinating wildlife here. Overlooking the Ramganga reservoir and the forested hills beyond, guests are treated to panoramic views of the surroundings.
The accommodations in this lodge range from Old Forest Rest House to New Forest Rest House, and hutments to cabins. All of them have been equipped with basic facilities that ensure a comfortable stay. A reading room and library can also be found here, where film shows on wildlife are run. The lookout tower present beside a waterhole enables visitors to spot various kinds of wildlife present here.
Baghvan, Pench National Park
Baghvan lodge, a Taj Safari lodge, consisting of 12 quaint standalone suites, in combination with a spacious siting room, is as charming as it gets. Each of the individual suite wears the look of a contemporary bungalow reminiscent of the 50’s ambience, with the feature stairs leading up to a covered jungle rooftop platform.
The guest area is equipped with a swimming pool, interactive kitchen, safari shop, library etc. Here, trained naturalists accompany families on jungle safaris and nature tours, thereby ensuring an amazing wildlife holiday in Madhya Pradesh. Enjoy a hearty breakfast on your private verandah, go for a picnic at Khoka Lake and enjoy sunset cocktails under the shade of a tree.
Aman-i-Khas, Ranthambore National Park
Aman-i-Khas, located in the midst of a brushwood forest on the edge of the Ranthambore National Park, is a fabulous Mughal style tented camp. The ten-tent safari outpost here with its soaring six meter canopies, surrounds a communal outdoor fireplace. That is as exotic as it gets!
The ten air conditioned tents, raised on concrete plinths, are inspired by the Mughal pavilions with cotton drapes dividing the bathing, sleeping and dressing sections. The wellness and spa experiences here feature holistic therapies, scrubs, baths and outdoor Yoga sessions, with the wilderness keeping you constant company. Dining is given a regal flavor with the Dining Tents and the privilege of a private bush dinner. Read More
Kabini River Lodge, Nagarahole National Park
Kabini River Lodge, named after the River Kabini, is situated on the southern outskirts of the Nagarahole National Park. Rated as “One of the Top 5 Wildlife Resorts of the World,” by the British Tatler’s Travel Guide, it defines the meaning of wildlife luxury stay in India.
This massive property, sprawling over 54 acres, is a former hunting lodge that now charms its guests through its elegant bearings, which are visible in its excellent accommodations and amenities. Here, mealtimes are occasions for story-telling, and this is exactly what Gol Ghar (the river facing gazebo) caters to. Activities here range from morning and evening jeep safari to watching a movie in the audio-visual hall and ending the day with a barbecue by the campfire.
Tusker Trails Resort, Bandipur National Park
Tusker Trails Resort, located inside Bandipur National Park, is all about connecting with Nature. Its brilliant location and outstanding facilities enable one to admire the beauty of nature even while immersing oneself in comfort.
Guests can enjoy safaris to the forest at both dawn and dusk. Some of the highlights of the resort are elephant rides, trekking, barbecue evenings and other indoor activities. Some of the additional facilities available here include conference facilities, spa and a large swimming pool. The accommodations include 16 well-furnished cottages with verandah and attached toilet facilities. Apart from wildlife exploration, some of the other activities include folk performances, nature walk, bicycle tours, lectures by naturalists etc.
Corbett Leela Vilas, Jim Corbett National Park
When it comes to an unsurpassed luxurious stay at Jim Corbett National Park, no one does it better than Corbett Leela Vilas. Established in the year 2009, this is where wildlife lovers who are desirous of experiencing the best safari moments, head to.
Stretching across an area of 2.5 acres, its 12 luxury cottages overflow with opulence combined with fabulously luxurious services. The entire vicinity is enveloped by mango orchards. These cottages, comprising an area of 850sq. ft., are given a dash of rusticity with the mud tiles that adorn the roof, along with the wooden flooring. Every cottage consists of one living and one bedroom set, besides being equipped with a luxury Jacuzzi.
Spice Village, Periyar Tiger Reserve
Spice Village, located just outside Periyar Tiger Reserve, blends beautifully with and pays homage to the environment it finds itself in. The resort is a haven of tranquility and spices, ranging from cloves to cinnamon. The spacious rooms, adorned with terracotta tiled floors, wooden beds and chairs etc., look very welcoming.
Some of the basic amenities here include games room, conference hall and badminton courts, besides others. However, the main attraction is the garden which hosts a wide variety of spice trees. A botanist is always available to answer any questions regarding the plants, trees etc. Besides, an Ayurveda Center and provisions for forest trek, water safari and cookery demonstration are also found here.
Taj Mahua Kothi, Bandhavgarh National Park
Taj Mahua Kothi, is named after one of India’s most beautiful trees, the “Madhuca Indica,” or the Mahua tree. The lodge lies just 20 minutes from the park entrance, and sprawls over 40 acres grounds. It is considered to be one of the most luxurious wildlife resorts in India.
The 12 fabulous guest suites or kutiyas (jungle village huts), are modelled after the vernacular style of Central India, also known as “MP Chic.” Each of the guest suites are gifted with their own courtyards with shaded seating and traditional mud floors. Every ensuite bathroom features indoor shower, twin hand basins etc. One of the favorites with the guests here is the yoga amenities available in a basket. Bicycles, parked outside the village huts, give one an opportunity to explore the surrounding areas.
Orange County, Nagarhole National Park
Orange Country, located in Kabini in Karnataka, is is designed to look like an extension of the heavenly landscape itself. Staying here is the best way of enjoying wildlife holiday in India. The architecture of the resort is inspired by Hadis or tribal villages, whereby the Kabini River embellishes the entire landscape.
The rooms in the resort are equipped with ethnic furniture and are adorned with tribal patterned furnishings. The Pool Huts boasts a larger living and dining area, a bathroom with a courtyard and a private swimming pool. Guests can savor delectable dishes at the riverside dining venue or enjoy boat dining.
The Samode Safari Lodge, Bandhavgarh National Park
The Samode Safari Lodge is one of the best wildlife resorts in India, a statement whose credibility lies in the numerous awards received by it. Its wonderful ambience, coupled with the state-of-the-art facilities available, wins the hearts of all who stay here.
The resort possesses 12 independent villas which are as spacious as they are classy. Each villa comprises of a bedroom, dressing room, an open-air bath, private verandah etc. Guests are treated to lip-smacking food served by the in-house restaurant. The heart of the lodge, however, is its lounge. With a wooden floor, two large fireplaces and some incredible views, this is the ultimate spot for relaxation.
The Taj Gateway Hotel, Gir Forest
The Taj Gateway Hotel Gir Forest, located on the edge of the Gir Forest, is one of the best places to spend your wildlife holidays in India. With the beautiful Hiran River overlooking it and the dense forest surrounding it on all sides, the hotel really places you in the lap of nature.
This hotel is equipped with all the modern amenities necessary for a comfortable stay. A swimming pool, spa and fitness center are available here, in combination with games room, children’s activity center and an open-air library lounge. GAD, the in-house restaurant, contains two unique concepts in their menu, namely, active foods and regional home-style cuisine.
Sunderban Mangrove Retreat, Sunderbans
Subderban Mangrove Retreat, located at Jamespore Village of Sajtalia Island at the edge of a mangrove forest, is a haven of serenity and pure bliss. Being a luxurious co-friendly resort, it provides its guests mesmeric views of the countryside, including the widespread Pichkhali riverside.
The rooms in the resort are basically mud huts with thatched roofs, thus giving them an authentic rusty feeling. Besides, there is a large dining hall available. This beautiful resort is often cited as an example of eco-tourism and its effects on the masses. Besides, its actively involved in the promotion of preserving and regenerating valued and multi-faceted natural resources of the mangrove forest.
Royal Tiger Resort, Kanha Tiger Reserve
Royal Tiger Resort, located in Kanha Tiger Reserve, offers one of the best wildlife experience in Madhya Pradesh. The architecture of this resort follows the traditional style, and is equipped with all those amenities and facilities which promise to make the stay of the guest comfortable.
Some of the amenities in the hotel include a swimming pool, meditation areas, a library with references books, folk dances around a bonfire, nature walks etc. The in-house restaurant serves completely home grown organic foods like fresh poultry, eggs and milk. The rooms here are modelled after village huts. Besides, air conditioned suites are also available here.