Located some 30 KM away from Sakleshpur, and away from any human activity, this small Tropical Rain Forest Resort has a few simple cottages built at the base of hills at the beginning of western ghat range on the Sakleshpur side. It is a good place to spend time with nature and peace.
None of the following are available at this location: TV, telephone, newspaper, radio, (almost no) cellphone signal, and, finally — no electricity too. Yes, there is no EB supply here, and they generate their own electricity by a small hydro-electric generating pump using piped water’s pressure from the waterfalls nearby. They do have a backup DG unit that they can use in case of necessity. Basically there is no electric power supply available during the day from 7 AM to 7 PM. They turn on the hydro pump at about 7 PM and they turn it off by 7 AM.
In the cottage there is no furniture except the cots with mattresses. There is no make up table, no luggage rack / shelf, no AC, no chairs or tables, etc. The bathroom is decently large, with highlights being — a part of the ceiling done with a transparent fiber glass roofing for skylight entry, and a bathtub sized plant garden as well in the bathroom.
This Tropical Rain Forest retreat’s location is quite hard to reach. The winding up & down sloping mud roads were just about okay for you to drive. There were a couple of water streams to drive through, one of them is slightly wide at 10-12 feet wide and may be about 1 foot deep. During monsoon rainy season this route is a little tough one with soggy and marshy roads, and at that time they do not allow visitors to drive up to the resort by own vehicles. During those times, the resort offers four-wheel-drive jeep pickup to fetch the people for that last 5-6 KM of mud road. For me too, due to the fact that the location of the resort is so much isolated, and the road leading to it is narrow and without any people movement, in that alienated surroundings amidst those thick trees, ups and downs of slopes, and completely silent route.
The resort team offers paid trip off-roading, on a 4-wheel drive jeep, on the mountain slopes amidst the forest area. But your very own drive for the last 4-5 KM to reach the Tropical Rain Forest retreat itself is an off-roading experience!
The resort cottages are all normal standard type construction. They have two other old log-hut type cottages, that are nested among dense trees on a slope behind the dining hall. That looked adventurously attractive but those log-huts are small and not spacious enough.
The resort provides 3 meal package including a trek on the hills. The trek around 5 PM is a great experience as they take close to the top of the hills. You can spend more time there and could reach further up to the plateau grass land at the top provided you leave bit early. However, even at the top most point, we can still see the long view of hills on the western ghats with those sprawling layers and decks of dense green nature spreading endlessly from there.
One the way up on the trek, we can stop by the pristine and cold mini waterfalls that is located within about 5 min. Walk into the forest as soon as we start the climb. It is nice to see water flowing even the summer. Water is cold and the location amidst trees is very scenic. Come across some elephant dung droppings, some looked fresh, on the trek route up.
When you arrive back at retreat after trekking, they will light up the complementary camp fire at night. The night scene is another icing on the cake. The swarms of fire flies sits on all the trees around, treated to some grand lighting display by the fire flies. It is a phenomenal exhibition of blinking lights by the fire flies.
At night, the rooms may have intruders from the surrounding trees and plantations. It is a phenomenon that can never be avoided when we stay anywhere amidst trees and near plantations / forest.
The other attraction here is the couple of nice ponds they have created, with one having a wooden path to the small central island ground with a lot of big gold fish in the water. That pond is simply fantastic and nice to sit around and enjoy the nature surrounded by scenic hills, trees, birds, and silence.
Another special is the lively pets they grow with them here. Then they have ducks, guinea hens, turkeys, wild hens, guinea pig, and then the star attraction in the morning.
Food they offer is basic. They provide veg and non-veg combined on a buffet serving. The staffs are all very friendly and courteous.