“May the sun in his course visit, no land more free, more happy, more lovely, than this our country!
-Sardar Bhagat Singh
Independence Day is not too far off and brings with it a long weekend! So why not savour this perfect opportunity and get away to some gorgeous destination to unwind, relax and celebrate this national holiday in style! Dining by a lake, camping in the wild, hiking in forests- we have something that will appeal to all your moods.
Here are 5 quintessential escapes that highlight the beauty of India:
The hills are alive with the sound of silence at this 100-year-old stone house. Nestled amidst the Oak and Rhododendron forests, this 10-acre fairytale hideout offers mesmerizing views of Nanda Devi. The mouth watering local Kumaoni thaali is prepared using the fresh produce from their organic gardens. Hiking in the beautiful valleys and spotting wildlife adds a unique and enchanting flavor to this love affair with nature. Lounging by the campfire and star gazing seems to be right at the top of our bucket-list.
Tucked away in the lush green forests of the Sahayadri hills, this UNESCO world heritage site lets us experience life as if we are characters in ‘The Jungle Book.’ This retreat overlooks the beautiful Shivsagar Lake and gorgeous waterfalls. A dip in the infinity pool followed with a relaxing and rejuvenating Ayurveda massage at Li Ra’s should definitely be at the top of your to-do list. A spread authentic Maharashtrian cuisine coupled with a glass of wine, under the stars is our idea of bliss.
Just 2 hours away from Mumbai, overlooking the Kalu river, this luxe farmstay has views that are a feast for the eyes. This 20-acre retreat allows us to pick and pluck the veggies for our own meals from their organic farms. Camping by the lake, listening to the breeze and singing by the bonfire makes this a great place for a fam-jam. If camping is not your thing, the Balinese villas with their own private pools also make for an amazing long weekend getaway.
Surrounded by verdant forests, this nature escape is ideal for soul-seekers – the view of the river, paddy fields and Aguada Bay from the large verandahs makes you forget all about your regular life. With only 7 villas in this 8-acre home stay, you are immersed in serenity, where the only sounds are the calls of the birds and gentle lulling of the waves. Each villa is built like a Goan home, offers a balcao, a large verandah, semi-open bathrooms with ample natural light. The blend of traditional craftsmanship with unobtrusive modern touches also adds to the peaceful ambience.
Secluded on the banks of Lake Vembanad and surrounded by the tropical green forests, this retreat offers breathtaking views of the backwaters in Kerala. This stay is ideal for artistic souls with every nook and cranny decorated with sculptures and artifacts from the past. Meditating and performing yoga aasanas every morning was a much needed detox for us. The Ayurveda treatment at PureSpa followed by dinner date by the lakeside is something we wouldn’t miss.
Where are you headed this Independence Day weekend? What have you planned for your special ones?