Van Serai Forest Lodge- A Labour of Love!


Activities at Jageshwar

We can keep you engaged in a whole range of ways, not all of the wild:

A number of ‘fun’ activities are available to bring about the child in you. Indulge in nature watch, hikes & treks, outdoor games, cooking lessons, video films, night walks, village & temple visits etc.

Walks around Jageshwar

You can take a walk around the local villages, admiring the traditional old houses with carved wooden doors and windows. Watch how time has stood still in some places and modernity has engulfed some others.

A visit to Jageshwar is incomplete without an interaction with a local family accompanied with a local Kumaoni meal. Sit around the bonfire hearing the local folklore and haunting Kumaoni music and songs. Feel the warm-hearted welcome and make a friend for life. Let our staff know if you‘re interested and we will help put it together for you.

Daily and Overnight Treks

Treks that take you through awesome mountain country. Amazingly revitalizing the solitude walks (serene solitude to help you be one to one with your inner self) take you through quaint pathways on the beaten as well as the un-treaded tracks. The solitude treks are conducted through thick forests and quaint Kumauni villages. Mostly downhill they are easy for everyone.

The bonus is that we offer you the opportunity not only of magnificent nature at its best but the chance to stay in traditional Kumauni village homes with carved doors and windows. With all amenities, the houses yet retain their rustic ambiance.

Starting from Binsar the trek makes its way to Jageshwar. Overnight stay at these rustic homes gives our trekkers a taste of traditional Kumauni food. Your palate will be delighted by the simple yet delicious food.

One can take the option of an entire day trek with an overnight stay or break up the trek in two to three days.

Bird watching in Jageshwar and Binsar Bird Sanctuary

The deodars forests at the lower altitude and the pine cover further up, are the perfect habitat for many rare bird species. Van Serai‘s in-house birding expert will be happy to initiate you into the world of bird watching. If you are already into birding, he would be an interesting source of information on species-specific to this region. You can also choose to explore the beautiful forests at your own pace, maybe carry a picnic hamper for a longer trek and make the most of the natural beauty around you.

Ancient Temple visits at Jageshwar Dham

A visit to the famous temples is almost mandatory. Reminding you of the stone balanced structures straight out of a Flintstones comic or Stonehenge, these temples have been here for centuries and are a wonder in themselves. The little legends and tales around the temples are part of the folklore and intrigues which our local guides would be happy to share with you.

Aarti and Pooja at the Hindu Temples of Jageshwar

Aarti is worship of the divinity of the Gods through the medium of the elements. Fire is revered in the Hindu religion. The flame is considered sacred as it represents light, warmth and fresh beginnings.  A purifying force that can cleanse The fiery element is believed to be the bridge between God and man.  During Aarti, the priest who conducts the prayers circulates the sacred thali on which the wick is placed. One exhibits reverence by cupping one’s hand over the flame and lifting it to the forehead.

Fun cooking lessons from Kumaon

Jageshwar being a pilgrimage site, we respect religious sentiments and serve only vegetarian food. Using fresh spices and vegetables from the village, our local cooks add that extra zest to the flavors and aroma, churning out scrumptious traditional homemade dishes. Catering to most palates, we try and provide a varied selection of Kumaoni and north Indian cuisine in our buffets and thalis (fixed menu platters) that also caters to non-resident guests. Specific dietary needs can be accommodated on prior requests.

Interacting with other guests in the dining area and enjoying the beautiful views, you wouldn’t miss room service.

If you like any particular dish or are keen to learn signature Kumaoni dishes, we can try and arrange a cooking lesson for you too. Feel free to exchange recipes with our cooks and make yourself feel at home.

Picnics with friends, family or colleagues

For guests wanting to go on long nature walks, birding or to explore the local village, we are happy to provide a picnic hamper. Customized to your taste, it gives you the freedom to enjoy your excursion at your own pace without time constraints. Walking through the beautiful surroundings, enjoying the solitude, you can nibble to regain energy or enjoy a warm drink and snack at a perfect spot sitting by the gurgling stream.

Corporate get together and Retreats

The top brass of many companies, select Van Serai for high-powered meetings of small groups. The meetings are conducted in the wilderness, our dining room, in the quietness of our verandah or in the consecrated space of Yoga room.

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