We were getting short of the fuel as well as we decided to go back and find our resort. There was a small road going uphill from the right as we moved behind around 4-5 kms. We decided to take that road as it was the only unexplored option left now. After few minutes, there was a huge traffic jam on that small road. When i inquired, it was the truck whose tyre got punctured and they were waiting for the new one from the city. The road was really small and hence, it was the traffic jam since unknown hours.
After entering into the forest region, all cellular networks vanishes, hence, you have to make sure about the way through GPS in advance. We lost a little bit of our way and we got tired also searching for the accommodation there as there are not many options. We could see the two sign boards in the way, one was of La Hermitage Resort and other was of Vanvasa Resort. We decided to stop as soon we see any one of them. But, on the contrary, we reached till the entrance of the Vatanvasa Gate and no hotels appeared. We found the sign board as Vanvasa Resort is still 30 km ahead deep inside the forest. We decided to go for the other option La Hermitage, which was around 8 km from the gate but behind. That was the real challenge, to find that resort, as we have just came from behind but nothing came to our eyes.
Choosing this route after Lansdowne was actually quite confusing and have put me into a dilemma. We had various different routes to proceed for such as Pauri Garhwal, an offbeat destination Khirsu, the well known place Nainital and many others according to the time you have remaining to spend for the trip. I decided to move towards the Kalagarh as it was new for me. I honestly had no prepared plans for there and I am glad, everything turned out smoothly in the end after facing many problems in the way making one of the most memorable journey of the life. After all, for a traveller, in the end, what matters is the experience gained and the story which he made.
In this blog, I will share about the property I stayed in Kalagarh and my experience there. Vatanvasa Gate is about 70 km from main Lansdowne and the drive takes around 2 hours. Make sure you have your fuel tank filled to the top before you leave as there are really no fuel stations around the forest and only there are few shops selling the fuel in a small village for an expensive price. The roads are smooth and picturesque views starts around 30-45 min prior to the destination and so the network disappears. The views are described as shown in the picture below.
It was luckily a wait of around 30-45 min before they came from the city and the road started. I was really getting worried as there was no GPS working and the battery was about to die. And, it was already getting evening with our minds getting tired. Soon, we encountered a sign board says "La Hermitage Parking" & I thought that's it. I have made it. But, I was not able to see any hotel or building there until my sight. We didn't stop at the parking and headed towards the road getting more and more inclined on the hill. The road got smaller, the curves got sharpened and it was almost impossible to relax and break in the way now. We had to move up constantly, there was no way to turn the car back and go down. After half an hour, we saw the first cottage like building located on a huge open ground and some people to assist us. They were the staff of the resort and the cottage was our room. There were many cottages but not in the same row, built in such a manner that from one cottage to another, you have to trek up/down little bit.
The cottage from outside
So, the room was quite good and pleasant. Yes, the mind became relaxed and the mood became refreshing with such property and the breathtaking views from 360 degrees around you. They called to the reception for the check in formalities and again, it was a tedious task because reception, restaurant and the other parts of the resorts were uniformly distributed throughout the open area. After completing all the formalities, we just had dinner and the day ended. The food was really delicious as well.
The next morning was the last day and it was planned to explore the property. If you manage to wake up early morning, you can find some animals coming out for water. There is a bird view point as well where you can find many different species of the birds in the morning. After the delicious breakfast, we started our hike, our first stop was the restaurant itself which was located on the third cliff from the cottage.
Next, there is a sunrise point and the sunset point as shown below.
As we moved ahead, the view was getting prettier and prettier. All we could say is "WOW" because it was almost impossible to expect something like that after the last frustating day. The next was the walking pathway where you can relax and walk.
I would also like to share some scenery around it through my pictures.
The resort is really in such a big space where you can spend your time getting yourself engaged in lot of sports and outdoor activities. I would recommend this place for family trips as well as with friends. As we turned back to trek down and going back to our homes, we saw natural termite homes & the twin tree which looks fascinating and amazing.
And now the view of the cottages from the top of the property as it looks....
We completed the check out formalities and started our journey back to home. As our fuel was really low, it was necessary to go to the nearby village for the trading of the fuel. After filling the tank, we turned our car and started back to home. Last but not the least, the milestone as the forest area ended giving us the cherishable memories.
With this part, I would like to end this journey & promise to come up with my next blog very soon. I have some pending to write which I experienced before the corona outbreak and the lockdown happened. During the lockdown, we, everyone, have found some alternatives for us, developed new habits like reading books, cooking, gardening, learning a new language and many others. Don't forget the main purpose of this lockdown is to keep yourself safe and healthy and soon, everything will become normal again. But we should learn from this situation that everything is temporary and we just can't live on the same routine everyday.
Travelling is an important part of our life as it teaches us to live outside of our comfort zones. You can also follow me on Instagram "sudarshan.g" & Facebook for more travel stories and experiences.