From the Hobbit home to the military bootcamp… unique places in India to add to your to-do list

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Post Covid, Indians travel more and are looking for new experiences. But if you think experiencing the unique would require a big budget and international travel, you’re wrong. Ahead of World Tourism Day on September 27, we’ve got you covered with a comprehensive list of unique experiences that you can easily add to your #travelgoals list, without breaking the bank or asking for long vacations.

Café-igloo

Igloos are no longer limited to Canada or Greenland. Although you cannot yet stay in a hotel in India, you can certainly dine there. Snowglu in Gulmarg is the largest igloo cafe in the world and they even applied for the Guinness World Record and it’s in progress. It is 37.5 feet tall and is divided into two sections – one for seating and the other is an art space.

military training camp

Have you always had a weakness for the Forces but couldn’t make your dream come true? At DATA (essentially Della Adventure Training Academy) Lonavala you can get an idea of ​​how the Forces train. The military-themed glamping resort is the first resort of its kind in India and offers a wide range of modules and training programs formulated by former faujis. Tired of all the exercise? There are 27 luxurious glamping tents where you can call it a day.

Hobbit house

Do you remember Bilbo Baggins? That respectable hobbit from The Lord of the Rings series? Well, the hobbits stayed in underground houses. And now you can too. And no, you don’t need to travel to New Zealand for this. Just a few hours from Mumbai and Pune is SaffronStays AsanjA, Murbad, which is India’s first land-based shelter house. It is a five bedroom property that offers magnificent views of the Sahyadri mountains. The cave houses are also equipped with a swimming pool and there is even a roof garden. A hidden door will lead you inside your own hobbit cave.

Naga Tribe Homestay

Headhunting Naga tribes were once feared. But now you can live with the Sangtam tribes in one of their community villages spread across Kiphire and Tuensang districts of Nagaland bordering Myanmar. Getting there is a task in itself as it is a 10 hour drive from the capital Kohima. You can live with them in their agricultural innovation center, made of bamboo and other sustainable resources. Not only that, you can cook your own organic farm-to-table meals and eat with the Sangtams in their community kitchen.

private island

Can you imagine staying on an island cut off from the rest of the world and its worries? There are many private islands in India that give you that feeling of rejuvenation. Cintacor Island in Goa is one of the best of them. Head to Karwar and from there take a 20-minute boat ride to reach this private island that has the Arabian Sea on all sides. Prime? You can spot dolphins here.

meal from heaven

Once upon a time there were revolving restaurants in cities like Delhi and Mumbai. Now you can literally dine ‘in the air’, combining adventure and gastronomy, at a height of 35 to 40 meters above the ground. It is basically a high quality metal structure that can accommodate 22 people around the table. Once seated on seats that swivel 180 degrees, you are strapped in with seat belts. What are you eating? Food and drinks that you can select in advance from the menu offered. Bangalore, Goa, Manali or Noida, take your choice of destination for this delicious adventure.

Hot tub

Imagine this. You are in a small village in the heart of Palani Hills in Tamil Nadu. There are hills, waterfalls and a picturesque landscape of agricultural terraces all around you. You’re sitting in a hot tub, glass of wine in hand, enjoying the view. Luxeglamp in Poombarai is where you can soak up this unique experience. This glamp-style eco-resort lets you stay in your private domed accommodation with a large balcony and hot tub to soak up the views in style.

Camping in the trees

Say goodbye to old-fashioned camping. What if we told you that you can now go camping in the trees? And that too in the buffer zone of a tiger reserve? Well, that is what Madhya Pradesh Tourism has come up with. They pitch tents on sturdy trees above the river or on steep terrain at Pachmarhi in the Satpura Tiger Reserve. How high do you want your tent? You decide.

All-weather pool

Want to swim at an altitude of 8825 feet in the mighty Himalayas’ Pir Panjal range while gazing at the mountains even as the snow falls outside? Book yourself a room at the Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa in Gulmarg, which allows you to do just that. The pool is temperature controlled, so practice these strokes as much as you can while mesmerized by the view outside.

Hilton Fitness Challenge

How about turning your vacation into a fitness challenge? At DoubleTree by Hilton Goa, Panaji, you start your vacation fitness goals the moment you step inside. Upon check-in, strap on a hotel-provided pedometer and match your internal opponent. Once your stay is over, you will be able to see which of you has won.

glass villa

Imagine watching the sun rise from your bed. At the Glass Villa in the backwaters of Goa, you can. Their unique architecture has a wood and glass facade, laterite walls and a sloping exposed concrete ceiling. And that’s not the villa’s only luxury feature. You also have a French and a sushi chef on call here.

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