5 Charming and quaint getaways around Delhi
Looking for a tranquil spot to spend time in the new year? These quick getaways near Delhi will help you escape the chaos of city life and gain enriching experiences
Looking for a tranquil spot to spend quality and alone time in the new year? These quick getaways near Delhi will help you escape the chaos of city life and gain enriching experiences
A tryst with historyLess than 30 kms from the Red Fort, Shikwa Haveli is located on the mound of Katha village, Baghpat on the banks of river Yamuna. “The Qazis (judges) under the Delhi Sultanate constructed a number of mansions on the elevated mound of Katha, during the period of 13th to 18th centuries. Shikwa is one such mansion,” says Alka Raza, owner. In mid-1990s, Shariq Bin Raza, former United Nations Diplomat, restored the 700-year- old Shikwa Haveli over a span of 13 years. Steeped in architectural history, the haveli is decorated with collectibles that the Razas accumulated from their travels as diplomats over the years. Apart from exploring the history of the haveli and Baghpat, you can take a village tour that offers insights in the life of villagers, their age-old culinary practices, art and craft. You can enjoy the breezy evening flying kite and in the night, there’s a cosy bonfire along the barbeque serving delectable delicacies. Price on request.
A slice of farm life
A lush 28 acre organic farm, 70km from Gurgaon, located at the foothills of the Aravalli ranges in the Alwar district of Rajasthan, Satya-Jyoti farm is a haven for lovers of nature and the environment. Started in 1990, the Satya-Jyoti community has transformed a barren piece of desert land into a lush farm that takes in female victims of abuse and domestic violence and trains them in organic agriculture and handicrafts. Kakoli, co-director, Satya-Jyoti, says,”Our main purpose is organic farming, we encourage people who want to experience farm life. We believe that if you really want to be a part of the change, then you should come and experience life on the farm in all its aspects.Take out some time out of your city schedule to just breathe unpolluted air, eat pesticide free food and smell the grass and climb trees, discover the simple joys of being on a farm, share our space and exchange ideas.” Travellers can participate in activities like harvesting, planting, weeding, pruning, pickling, composting and constructing.Bird watching, photography, cooking, or simply reading, taking long walks through the crops, swimming in the bio pool, enjoying a tractor ride are also some of the activities offered. It is the tasty and organic food that definitely deserves a shout out. Meals like Bajra or wheat puri with Channa, Makki ki roti and sarson ka saag, daal bati in the winter sun lends a rustic charm. The beautiful farm stays are priced ₹1,500 per night approximately.
The air here is crisp, laden with charm, accompanied by top-of-the-line amenities, BasiWoods offers solace, peace, and serenity. Located in Basi village, Bulandshahar, this picturesque place lies within 116 kms from Delhi. For those seeking respite from the hustle bustle of city life, the lush green surroundings, the peace and quiet of this establishment would be therapeutic. Surrounded by beautiful river Ganga, Basi Wood is one of the wetlands under Ramsar Convention and provides a unique experience to travellers. “Basiwoods Resort and Adventure Camping is a place where you unplug yourself from the rapid pace of mechanical world and sink in to the lap of nature. Basi village is home to rare species of Dolphins, birds, turtles, deer, bucks, peacocks,” says Kunwar Talha, co-owner. Activities such as Archery, two-rope parallel, tyre travels, plank walk, ladder walk, Burma bridge are definitely must-dos on a visit to the place. The resort provides a jeep safari to the jungle and bullock cart ride to the Ganga river. At night you can enjoy the bonfire under the stars and the moon. “We have worked to conserve wild boars and Bara Singha in the region, also its a dolphins reserve area,” adds Talha. Meals consist of organically grown vegetables with the help of locals who help in producing them. “Fresh, simple and organic are the secret ingredients of a fine dining experience. Here, meals are lot more than just food, it’s family bonding time,” opines Talha. Prices range from around ₹5000 to ₹15,000.
Lost in the woods
Spread over 16 acres, Dilkushan Bagh is a resort nestled in Gairatpur bass opposite Tikli Gardens in Gurgaon. It is a refuge for wildlife, birding and outdoor enthusiasts and is the perfect venue to relax and rejuvenate on a day trip. “11 years ago, I bought this land and decided to grow a forest. My father, a nobleman, told me not to leave my home. So I uprooted my home in Patiala and brought each and every piece of furniture, every carved wooden door, restored it and placed it inside this estate. So, the architecture is 100 years old. The aim is to research, record, share and archive Indian natural and cultural heritage, “ says Kumar Karun Kant, founder. Travellers can enjoy taking in the majesty of the century old antique furniture and architecture. Also, Ted talks, music renditions and Saturday and Sunday luncheons are regularly organised. Food is prepared from original traditional recipes with homegrown ingredients. They are in the process of re-creating the ambiance of yesteryear kingdoms of Patiala, Rampur, Kapurthala and Baroda thereby offering guests a unique opportunity to bask and learn about the heydays of India’s history. The price of admission to these events are around ₹5000 per head.
Live like a native
Snuggled away in village Gairatpur Baas, near Badshahpur, Sohna Road, Gurugram, Lohagarh farms is an ideal one-day getaway. A place for urban dwellers who seek solitude and peace far from the madding cities and are looking for authentic rural experiences. The place showcases and allows travellers to experience the vibrant culture of a typical Indian village, indulge in delectable local food, uncover traditions and ways of rural life, indulge in folk music and dances and discuss local legends. Local arts and crafts along with an area for desi activities like gulli danda and kabaddi further add to the rural setup. “It is an unconventional place which takes us down to our childhood memories even for our parents who have seen rural areas developing into urban areas. For the Gen Z it is an experience to acquaint themselves with Indian culture and our roots. The place has over 70 plus activities to do for all age groups to enjoy modern activities with a traditional touch,” says Diksha Taneja, a travel enthusiast. It offers tourists a wide range of team-friendly activities that include camel rides, tractor and bullock rides, pottery, agricultural and adventure activities along with savoury local food. If you want to rejuvenate, do try a mud bath and head massage along with delectable food.