Discover Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book at this retreat hidden away near a village on the edge of the Pench Tiger Reserve which was the inspiration behind the author’s famous title.
Get up close and personal with wildlife including tigers, boars, jackals, wolves and deer; spot several birds around the Unhotel including the white broad wagtail, paradise fly catcher, green footed yellow pigeon and black drango among others.
Spend an evening near the bonfire, huddled in warm blankets while exchanging stories with the fascinating hosts and guests and look up at stunning vistas of the starry sky.
This is what ‘Incredible India’ feels like.
The camp has 14 ‘homely’ air conditioned rooms equipped with modern amenities spread across beautifully landscaped areas. Red oxide flooring, bamboo light fixtures and locally embroidered duvets add to the ‘junglee’ charm. The camp owners even make their own charming little toiletries using pure aloe vera sourced from the forest; they are now looking to expand this ‘homegrown’ line using other local plants too.
Apart from being close to the Pench Tiger Reserve, this camp is surrounded by a village and a lake around which a space has been made especially for guests to relax.
The Outback has a great pool for its guests surrounded by the greenery of the forest. The camp also offers ‘desi massages’ which focus on soothing and healing stress-related problems.
Guests can make use of the common TV/AV room, a well equipped library and a ton of interesting indoor games for those cosy winter days. For the tiny tots, there is a sweet little play area with swings and slides.
Wifi is available at the reception area but not in the rooms or elsewhere on the retreat
The hostess manages a modest kitchen at The Outback which churns out the most lip smacking Indian and Mughlai dishes – all fresh and sourced from the farm. And of course, they are met with raving reviews from the guests.
All guests are welcomed with a refreshing glass of chilled lemon juice which is necessary especially after a long day of travel.
Morning wake up calls for safaris are often accompanied by sterling cups of hot adraki chai (ginger tea). Best part is – all of this is inclusive in the tariff. Guests can also ask for meals by a bonfire or a barbeque session.
This beautiful forest lodge was the brainchild of three wildlife enthusiasts who have been hands on with almost everything at The Outback. In fact, they didn’t even consult a formal architect to build the beautiful retreat.
Together, they empower the tribe in the village nearby. Not only have they set up an NGO that helps set up local schools to ensure the tribal children have a good education and trained teachers, they also employ them on the retreat as well. Guests are welcome to visit the schools and interact or teach the children.And for all the dog lovers, the resident labrador D is always available for a game of fetch!
The Outback is the perfect blend of Jungle Book and modern forest lodging. It is close enough for a weekend getaway and far enough for a detox from city life. Most of all, it is a retreat with its heart in the right place.
Those searching for a homely and authentic ‘jungle’ getaway, who prefer jungle safaris over more urban adventures and who need a detox from city life. For those whose idea of a relaxed holiday is getting closer to flora and fauna. Recommended for families with children.
Not for those who find it hard to leave their digital addiction behind. Also not for people who are not particularly fond of wildlife or adventure. Not recommended for the elderly or families with infants.
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