A Wilderness Lodge
The pine, teak and sal of the forests of Uttarakhand are notoriously silent. Even the birds deign to sing their song. Then, a piercing roar from the lord of these jungles. It is then you realise that you are in Corbett, India’s first ever national park, amongst the mountains of the Kumaon, and the lie of the last white hunter of India.
Corbett National Park is a beautiful labyrinth of forests and peaks interspersed with the Ramganga River. The oldest national park in India, Corbett was established out of a need to conserve the land where Jim Corbett once roamed and so fastidiously penned. This was the genesis for Project Tiger, a milestone in preserving India’s national animal. 502 sq km of the pristine forest waiting for you to explore.
Vanghat’s model of sustainable tourism nestled among Jim Corbett National Park makes it a perfect destination for those that truly want to seek the wild on its own terms.
Know Your Host
Sumantha Ghosh started Vanghat with an innate understanding of wildlife preservation in its natural element. He saw the potential around the Ramganga for a prime fishing destination along with space for conserving eco-tourism and the philosophy of giving back to the wild. Today, Sumantha sees Vanghat...
Sumantha Ghosh started Vanghat with an innate understanding of wildlife preservation in its natural element. He saw the potential around the Ramganga for a prime fishing destination along with space for conserving eco-tourism and the philosophy of giving back to the wild. Today, Sumantha sees Vanghat as a venture that veers away from conventional tiger tourism in the land and serves as a hospitable and rustic avenue to disconnect from the familiar and find oneself among the forests of Uttarakhand.
Vanghat, built on a simple model, to be a sustainable venture and give back to the land of its conception, is situated on the banks of the Ramganga. Vanghat is accessible only by a raft or 4x4 vehicle, making it an isolated getaway into the wild. Inviting true lovers of the wild Vanghat’s spaces are designed to be minimalistic, green and rustic. Community-based conservation and tourism-based conservation are among Vanghat’s tenets, and this reflects in everything both inside and outside of the property.
Vanghat hosts nine spacious cottages amidst the wild. Five of these cottages are constructed with stone, while four are mud and thatch cottages. Designs of each cabin reflect the sense, sensibilities and style of typical Pahadi homes in the region. Every part of the living space at Vanghat is designed to have as little impact on the environment as possible, including the dining and research stations.
The cottages are also wildlife-friendly, standing on raised platforms to allow animals to pass by without getting stressed by human activity safely.
Vanghat believes in growing what you eat. Everything that goes into the dining at Vanghat is produced in house in the organic garden. The inhouse chef is an expert at preparing Indian and Tibetan fare, and they are more than happy to accommodate any special dietary requests.
Vanghat means “The valley of the wild” in Hindi. Everything at Vanghat is motivated by the experience of the wild in its true form. All cottages and common spaces at the property are also designed to be hides and watch-outs for wildlife. Vanghat also has a Machaan, a high platform that offers a 360-degree view of the Shivaliks where one gets to be as close as possible to nature without being intrusive. If you’re lucky, you may just spot a fleeting glimpse of stripes in the wilderness, silently traversing the domain.
For those that want to dive into the jungle, the safari at Corbett provides an excellent opportunity to observe wildlife from a safe distance with the guidance of trained naturalists. An outstanding experience that is offered by Corbett; the chance to experience the jungles on elephant-back.
Angling is one of Vanghat’s highlighted experiences. Being one of the prime locations for the world-famous Golden Mahseer, Vanghat is a perfect destination for those aching to use their fishing reels. For those that seek adventure beyond, there are innumerable trekking opportunities and wildlife excursions available around Vanghat. Climbing the machan is also a surreal experience that promises to be as rewarding.
Vanghat is accessible by 4x4 as well as a raft and therefore is of easy reach to those with reasonable fitness levels. The salubrious outdoors and setting within the property mean that you can observe wildlife right from the property.
Vanghat is open all year
Vanghat began with the premise of conservation and sustainability and has reiterated that we are guests of the forest and not the other way round. Ticking all touchstones, Sumantha and Vanghat show the benefits of when tourism is done right without diluting the immersive guest experience. Built to not disturb the fragile environment, it is so well camouflaged that one can’t always tell where the lodge ends and the forest begins.
Vanghat practices community-based tourism with the entire staff belonging to the local area. This brings in their expertise and wisdom of the jungle and its ways. They have also been trained to be the naturalists and guides who take you on walking safaris, birding and angling. Sumantha has been instrumental in helping the numbers of the Golden Mahseer found in the river here rise, working with the community by setting up a scheme to share revenues. Efforts were then made to restore the land around the forest, resulting in wildlife returning.
There is an emphasis to facilitate a meaningful learning environment for children and programs with young children open their minds to the wonders of the jungle and the necessity of conservation and preservation.
by Sightseer05559018714 on 08/16/2022
My friends and I stayed at Vanghatt for 3 days a few weeks ago and had one of the best trips so far in India! We were looked after so well by our guides Yogi and Manoj who sorted everything from 3...
by doragoudie on 08/16/2022
My friends and I had such a memorable experience at the Vanghat Lodge, from the trek there to staying in the beautiful cabins. All the staff were very friendly and knowledgable about the wildlife...
by sidhanthnarula on 08/01/2022
Words simply cannot encapsulate the experience that Vanghat is, for a two day visit is only enough to scratch the surface of this teeming wildlife refuge. However, it’s safe to say that even a...