As a traveler, it is our responsibility to ensure that not only we reduce our carbon footprints while hopping around, but also to leave something positive behind. Being one of the lucky few who got to see quite a bit of this world, we also have to make sure the Earth still remains beautiful.
Couple of weeks ago, we got a chance to visit the ‘The Terraces‘ in a place called Kanatal, a couple of hours ride from Dehradun.
By the end of the few days spent here, I realized this place can be thought of a destination in itself. It’s not only a world-class property, the resort has positively influenced the villages nearby, right from providing employment to making ways for other cash generating avenues for the locals.
Mr. Ravi Malhotra, the man behind ‘The Terraces’, has attempted to bring together his visions for sustainability with the dreams of the people of Gharwal, by making them an integral part of his concept of ‘Beyond Terraces’.
My favorite memory of the stay here was enjoying the morning sun with a jaw dropping view of the Himalayas, while enjoying my cup of coffee and the amazing breakfast spread that the resort staff had laid out.
The resort was also very kind enough to arrange for an authentic farm to table meal at a local’s house, made with the freshest produce. The locals gladly opened up their homes to us and took the utmost care to ensure we enjoy it. We got a tour of their farms and had an amazing experience. As I had my fourth cup of dessert ( milk pudding with rice or kheer in other words), I saw our hosts’ faces light up with satisfaction knowing that we heartily enjoyed the humble lunch they had cooked up for us.
Another favorite was the street food from the simple ‘Mohan ka Dhabha’ at the edge of a cliff!
The Himalayas evoke a sense of spirituality like no other area in the world. Away from the hustle and bustle of the city life, this place offers the perfect background and fresh air to get in touch with your inner self. Here, you will even get a chance to catch up with your long forgotten yoga practice courtesy the classes provided by the resort.
Our Yoga retreat at The Terraces
However, do not let the fancy resort facade fool you! If you are more of a homestay kind of traveller, the management here supports a few village homestays for people who look for simple accommodation. This is a great way to experience the culture and understand more about the village life. These living arrangements are more natural and simple, think no air- conditioning and no hot- water showers, but you will gain a local and new perspective to your travel experience.
Courtesy the hotel, I got to trek up some beautiful trails and enjoyed a night picnic amidst nature. The property proudly maintains 5 campsites set in beautiful forest locations. Here, you can just sit back and take in the nature, walking along the rivers and listening to the birds.
I will be damned if I did not mention the amazing SPA at this place! It is undoubtedly one of the best I had experienced in India (no exaggeration)!! Imagine rooms opening to a view of the mountains, tranquil background music and a lingering smell of relaxing essential oils will take you to an another dimension!
The Jacuzzi was another slice of heaven. If I get a chance to ever return to this place, I will probably spend most of my waking hours in it!
I was also pleasantly surprised to learn about the hotel management’s ongoing efforts to encourage the local women to make handicrafts and small jewelry, that made available for sale in the gift shop. Its an amazing way to give back to the society!
On the whole, The Terraces is a responsible tourism property doing its bit for the betterment of our planet. Set amidst majestic forests of pine and deodar trees in the Himalayas, it blends beautifully with nature’s bounty.
I hope you get a chance to experience this little piece of heaven for yourself just like I did!