Monday, January 20, 2014

Dandeli Jungle Camp: Rural Accommodation in True Jungle Style

During my recent trip to Dandeli, I got to experience rustic hospitality in the middle of Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary’s buffer zone. Such places are simple, community run, but are perfect for a nature lover like me. I stayed at this place called Dandeli Jungle Camp that is situated about 12 kms out of Dandeli and amidst dense forests. The below review is based on my recent experience of staying 2 days and 1 night here.

1) If you are a nature lover, this is place you want to be. Waking up to bird sounds, a fresh whiff of air and lovely greenery, the Dandeli Jungle Camp has the ideal setting.

2) Since this camp is situated right in the buffer zone of the Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary, it is easy to spot many of the park’s wildlife and birds here. I saw the great hornbill, the Malabar pied hornbill, the Malabar giant squirrel and many more birds during my brief stay here.

3) The place is simple with basic rooms that come with an attached toilet. The emphasis is on the experience and not just on the accommodation. With the exception of a bed, a chair, a light and a table fan, the room bears a spartan look. The attached bathroom and toilet is similarly designed.

4) Food is simple, but extremely tasty. The cook generally prepares local specialties, but they also dish out standard Indian fare.

5) The place is run by the local people and hence most of the money provided by us tourists goes to the upliftment of the local community.

6) The camp arranges a lot of activities for the tourists like nature hikes, bird watching, wildlife safari, river rafting, kayaking, tribal meets and more. Some activities are included in their package, while the others can be added for an additional cost.

7) Typically, the per person cost for a room (twin share basis) with all 3 meals and some activities costs INR 1,250 per night.

8) The place is completely in the lap of nature. Hence, there is no internet connectivity, but phone connectivity is pretty reliable here.

9) Hot water is not available in the rooms, but is provided upon request.

10) One of the main highlights of this camp is its tree house that is an instant draw for kids (for the excitement factor) and for bird watchers (as they can study birds closely).

11) Campfires are arranged every evening upon nightfall and is a great way to relax and soak in the events of the day amidst absolute silence (minus the cackling of the fire).

I would definitely recommend this place is you are looking for a rustic and simple experience in nature’s lap. Personally, I prefer such kind of places over the air conditioned and geyser places. But, that’s just me, who believes the area around the wild should be as close to nature as possible.

Courtesy: My accommodation at Dandeli Jungle Camp was arranged for by

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