Do you mind being disturbed during dinner under the stars by the alarming trumpets of a wandering tusker? Or get excited by suddenly hearing the growl of the tiger as she patrols her territory, from behind the safety of the solar-electric fences? Or be alarmed by the rustling of the dew laden grass as the mongoose meander through the forest playing hide and seek? Or catch a glimpse of the fleeting jackals as they chase the shy and elusive civet cat through the grounds when the in-house naturalist takes you on a Night Walk? Every day here feels like an adventure, best experienced in the comfort of Jim’s Jungle Retreat, located in the thick jungles of the southern Terai forests of Corbett Park.
Established in 1936, Corbett’s mountainous and grassland terrain extends over 1300 sq km of forest, rivers and lake. Set in 15 acres of lush greenery, Jim’s Jungle Retreat with forest and mountain vistas, countless bird-spotting opportunities, instinct-sharpening walks and safaris and hours by the pool or on your private verandah.
At the edge of the forest, 18 aesthetically designed lodges and cottages make up the property. Reminiscent of Raj-era bungalows and forest lodges, the plush retreat combines luxurious fabrics and an attention to detail that elevates your safari getaway. The furniture and interior design is true to its surroundings, visibly making use of the local craftsmanship to achieve a homely and authentic feel.
There’s also a well-stocked library for the tourists who are curious about India’s floral and faunal diversity, a recently added café and the jungle-inspired chemical-free spa, for those looking to disconnect from the world and relax in the lap of nature.
Sample the local cuisine prepared by their super chef either at the cafe or the Gujjar- style thatched lounge. The open dining room is guaranteed to take you on an Indian culinary journey; there is an organic kitchen garden and farm which produces the freshest cuisine inspired by the Kumaoni, the Raj-era and the Nawabi kitchens of Rampur.
You can take a dip in their swimming pool if you are looking to relax in a peaceful setting after some wildlife spotting, which can be truly exhausting by the end.
The best part, Jim’s Jungle Retreat offers thrilling safari-based itineraries, the rough and tumble of the enterprise well taken care of by unique elements of comfort. The safaris, guided by qualified naturalists, include elephant and jeep rides through the same jungles the legendary Corbett roamed. The forest walks and mountain-bike safaris have provided tiger and tusker sightings on more than one occasion.
How to reach?
The property is around 290 kms away from Delhi. The drive can take between five and six hours, depending on traffic. Take the NH 24 from Delhi to Moradabad via Hapur and Simbhaoli. Get onto the Moradabad bypass and take a left turn onto NH 74 to Ramnagar via Thakurdwara and Kashipur. As you enter Ramnagar town take a sharp turn left, nearly a U-turn, and then another 13km to village Dhela and there is Jims Jungle Retreat.
The nearest railhead is Ramnagar (13km). A daily Delhi-Ramnagar rail, the Sampark Kranti Express (5036a), departs at 1600 hrs from Old Delhi railway station. The nightly Ranikhet Express leaves Delhi for Ramnagar from the Old Delhi station. Jim’s Jungle Retreat will organize a pick up on request as well.
Have you read Neeraj Narayanan’s book – This Guy’s On His Own Trip yet? It’s right now #1 bestseller in the travel books category on Amazon. Click here to buy your copy!