Would you like some company over your morning or evening cup of tea? Then lay out the table; Papa deer, Mama deer and their four babies are all on the way.
This is just one of the perks when you check into the Singinawa Jungle Lodge at the Kanha National Park in Madhya Park. Set in 55 acres of a forested estate, the lodge is home to many animals and birds including the deer who roam around freely. And are often seen on the verandahs looking through the big glass panes into your cottage.
Singinawa is a Sherpa word for ‘Protectors of the Sacred Forest’ and was set up by conservationist couple Latika and Nanda Rana. Both of them are repositories of knowledge and experience, and are happy to share all of it with their guests. You should use the opportunity to chat them for insights into the natural world you have to gone to explore for yourself.
* The main building: Grand is the word for it, and you may be hard-pressed to think of another like this in any hotel or lodge. The ground floor has a dining room with a long table for two dozen to feast together. There is a small deck should you want to dine in candlelight closer to the greens. A double staircase takes you from the ground floor to the first. There is another dining area with a bar and tables for smaller groups. This opens into a big terrace for meals to be served in the open air. A sitting area has luxurious couches and a library full of books and magazines you would love to read. This also opens onto a deck if you want your tea served out. The walls are full of large prints of tigers – shot by Mr. Rana in India and Nepal. You cannot but feel a sense of awe at the photography and a tinge of envy – who would not like to see tigers and their cubs for real like the photographer did?
* Rooms: The 12 stone and slate cottages are some of the best going around in the hospitality business. Each stands in seclusion, surrounded by trees where intruders to your privacy are only the deer and the occasional leopard or tiger. Rooms are tastefully furnished and well maintained. Bedsheets, towels and other linen are of good quality and give a clean feel. Beds are super king size, as is the room. There are attached baths with a double vanity and running hot and cold showers. A fireplace, mini bar, tea and coffee making facilities, lounge sofas and workstations almost make it a fully equipped home. Housekeeping does an excellent job in keeping the rooms spic and span.
* Food: The chefs prepare a variety of home cooked meals, served in high quality crockery and cutlery. The chef makes great muffins and cakes to go with the coffee and tea. You can also request for meal preferences.
* The villages around: Do ask your hosts to arrange for drives in the surrounding villages, where you get to interact with the local population. Many of them still follow lifestyles going back centuries; of course, it is mixed with modern influences but you will still be transported back in time.
* The Safaris: You go to Kanha for the safaris, and Singinawa is all geared for it. They have their own team of naturalists and well maintained 4×4 Gypsy SUVs. Singinawa is located near the Mukki zone of Kanha; there are two others, Kisli and Kanha, zones too. Insist that you are booked to go to the other zones too if your stay is long enough. They may be a longer drive away, but may be worth the effort.
* Other amenities: A swimming pool with deck chairs for sunning yourself. Masseurs are available on request at the spa offering Indian and Oriental treatments. A nature shop sells some great stuff to take back as gifts.
* By Train: Nearby railheads at include Gondia (110 kms), Jabalpur (203 kms), Nagpur (290 kms), Raipur (213 kms) and Bilaspur (182 kms).
* By Air: Jabalpur, Nagpur and Raipur are all connected to the major cities in India.
* By Road: Kanha is well connected by road – and can easily be made a part of different travel circuits in central India.
Singinawa Jungle Lodge,
Village Kohka, PO Baihar,
Tehsil Baihar, District Balaghat-481111
Madhya Pradesh, India.
Tel: +91.7636.256806 / 256807
Contact Persons: Nanda and Latika Rana
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Website : www.singinawa.in
Singinawa Jungle Lodge, Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India: The study in a cottage overlooking the greens
Singinawa Jungle Lodge, Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India: The double vanity in the bath and dressing area
Singinawa Jungle Lodge, Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India: The deck to lounge around
Singinawa Jungle Lodge, Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh, India: Old photos of ‘shikars’ or hunts