Can’t decide where to book your stay for your next trip? Homestays and high-end hotels are the obvious options, but have you considered tree houses? They don't always mean Spartan living with the promise of an adventure. They too can offer indulgent luxury.
Vyithiri Resort, The Machan and Pugdundee Safarsis are three tree-house resorts that are nothing like the conventional wooden one-room variety, but promise every comfort. Their classy suites will change your perception about living in the wilderness.
Vyithiri Resort is an exquisite jungle getaway located in Wayanad, a mountainous district in northern Kerala. From offering an ayurvedic spa treatment and travel assistance to the services of a health club, Vyithiri's attractions are many, making it a perfect weekend getaway! It does not come cheap. The price for one night at their honeymoon pool villa will be ₹30,000. Under this package, they organise a half a day of sightseeing to Pookot Lake and View Point by jeep. After the long ride, Vyithiri serves the couple a candle-light dinner and a honeymoon cake. The two also can choose any dish they like from the dinner buffet.
The next morning, they organise trekking inside the resort property to natural waterfalls, streams and natural pools. And lastly, the couple is treated to a massage in the Vythiri SPA Center. To cherish memories from this trip, a souvenir is handed over at the time of check out.
The next on the list is the one that opened over two decades ago. This one was built by a family that set out to find ideal land for a weekend getaway from Mumbai. It had to be wooded, peaceful and serene. “We were disappointed, as we found that most lands around this region (Lonavla) were mostly degraded by repeated slash-and burn-cultivation, and were overgrazed and suffocated by a dense carpet of Karvi,” says Varun Hooja, founder, The Machan. They took it upon themselves to return the forest to it's ecological balance. A 25-acre parcel of land, part of a tropical cloud forest and situated over 3,300 feet was acquired. And, their effort to restore the forest began!
From digging water holes for animals, implementing a water-harvesting system and a solar and wind hybrid system, the family did it all! Initially, The Machan (meaning a hunting platform built on a tree) opened up its panoramic views to visitors, gradually various machans (or tree houses) were built with minimum interference with the ecology.
Just like the history of Machan, their rooms and facilities are equally interesting! They have recently built their Starlight Machans, where one can revel in the cooling effect of the thick canopy above and verdant foliage around. A short walk through the forest, heading towards the bamboo groves, and an elevated bridge guides you right into your heavenly abode. “Transporting the ancient concept of a 'star bed' to the modern era, our luxurious Starlight Machans literally have a translucent roofs for guests to enjoy the pitter-patter of the rains in monsoon and the starry night sky in winters and summers,” he adds. Each of the Starlight Machan is eclectically designed with its four-poster bed, antique writing table and stone-topped bar. Your weekend getaway here can cost you ₹28,0000 + taxes.
Pugdundee Safaris’ tree house hideaway, located in Madhya Pradesh, is slightly less pricey than the other two, but it promises the same facilities! From bird-watching tours and photography sessions to an outdoor barbeque, adventures at this tree house seem endless. For the ones who are interested in learning about wildlife, there are evening sessions with the naturalists, every day.
So, are you ready to pack your bag and head towards these plush, eco-friendly resorts? Hit their website and choose your desired package, except try not to pack anything plastic. We need to appreciate and preserve the beauty we find.