What's top on your list of priorities when you book a stay during your vacations? You might be a nature lover or interested in architecture, you may be a hill person or a water lover--you'll still want to stay in a place which takes your breath away when you open the window in the morning.
We have culled a list of little gems from across the country to help you plan your next holiday well.
- Cedar Lodge, Shimla
It's not the fanciest of hotels, and the drive up is kind of an adventure sport after the sun sets. However, the view this lodge offers after the sun sets is to die for. In the summer, the cedars are fragrant and musky and green. In the winter, they are covered with a blanket of snow. All you need to do is to drag a chair to the portico outside your room and relish the bliss.
- Pangarh Lake Resort, Chittorgarh
About 35 km out from the Chittorgarh Fort is the lesser known Pangarh Fort. The ruins offer a spectacular view of the Pangarh Lake. Located right next to the lake are these Swiss tents, ideal for those who want to spend their days in peace and quietude – birdwatching, riding a horse if you fancy, and exploring the rugged terrain of Rajasthan. October to March is the perfect season to be here.
- Rainforest, Athirapally
Bang in front of the massive Athirapally waterfalls, this tiny hotel has nine rooms and a tree house surrounded by thick foliage, which is only a sample of the greenery you will encounter as you explore the Sholayar mountain range all around you. It's intimate and aesthetically pleasing, and great for nature lovers. Now is the best time to visit, as the rains bring one of India's greatest waterfalls to life.
- Ri Kynjai, Shillong
Its tagline is 'serenity by the lake' and that pretty much sums up your experience in this hotel. Located next to the Umiam lake, rooms at Ri Kynjai are designed to resemble Khasi huts. The place offers you authentic Khasi food and massages. You can get a view of the lake from almost every corner of the hotel so you can expect some glorious sunrise and sunset experiences.
- Hidden Forest Retreat, Gangtok
Hidden Forest Retreat is exactly like what the name suggests. If you are looking to take a break away from the big city chaos, this place is ideal. You can participate in various activities offered by the retreat itself. You can sharpen your culinary skills by cooking local food with in-house chefs or take long walks in the forests dotted with beautiful wild flowers. Count the butterflies along with your blessings.
- Castle Bera, Jawai
Jawai in Rajasthan is a unique place – it is perhaps the only place in the country which is teeming with rare flora and fauna and is yet not too crowded. You are most likely to spot a leopard if you go on a safari and will have hundreds of migratory birds to feast your eyes on. Castle Bera is a great heritage stay option where you can expect all the elements of a Rajasthani castle-turned-hotel experience, including that fab ever-smiling quintessential Rajasthani service.
- Elsewhere, Goa
Unless you are booking a stay at Elsewhere, you don't even get to know the address – and that's just one of the quirks of this place. It's beautifully designed, it's got great local food, you can go on nature walks. It's located right on the beach and yet its not crowded.
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