If you love holidaying around earthy elements, Hriday Bhoomi in Jim Corbett’s Dhela village happens to be one of the most heartwarming abodes known to me. I recently visited this pretty homestay (luxury villa) with my family and we totally loved it. This one is right next to the forest gate that lets you in the Dhela and Jhirna zone and the peacefulness that surrounds the place is absolutely adorable. Set in the picturesque settings of a village life, Hriday Bhoomi is very happy and holistic in its appeal.
The double storied house has five spacious rooms and the whole house is very tastefully done. There are swings in the open areas, the rooms are equipped with all the modern amenities and the well-maintained garden adds to the ambiance. The house has lovely Aipan paintings which capture the local art and culture of Uttarakhand. The owner herself looks into the home decor, and has given a personal touch to everything. And for the booklovers, the house has a reading room too with a small library to keep you entertained. The staff is extremely polite and friendly. And the home-cooked food is delectable.
‘Hriday Bhoomi’ – What’s in a name?
The essence of this home stay lies in its name. There couldn’t be another name. Hriday-Bhoomi truly lives up to its identity. ‘Hriday’ means ‘Heart and ‘Bhoomi’ means ‘Goddess of Earth’. The owners have named it by combining their son and daughter’s names together. This is the most interesting co-incidence because both the words have deep rooted meanings.
And only when you stay here, you would know the vibes and the energy of the place. They are in absolute sync with the name. Everything is very simple, earthy and soulful about the house, coming straight from the heart. The idea is to turn it into a happy place that extends inclusivity to all kinds of special children and their parents, as the owners are parents to a special child too.
Uninterrupted Sunrise and Sunset Views
Are you a sunrise or a sunset person? Well, personally, I love chasing sunsets but I also like waking up early during my travels. I mean who would want to miss the sound of the rooster crowing and the chirping of the birds at sunrise? At Hriday Bhoomi, I did find my cozy place on the swing on the terrace and enjoyed my morning calmness. The green fields and very few houses in and around gave an uninterrupted view of the rising sun. I sat there for a long time and even enjoyed my breakfast in the open. But that’s not all. The house also gets a beautiful sunset view every evening. I can vouch for the sunset clicks inside the Jim Corbett National Park, and since this house is very close to the Dhela zone, you get to see the drama of colours from the house itself. On the days, I stayed there, God painted a mesmerizing canvas. Look at the sunset picture below. It is unfiltered.
Also read – Phato Zone in Jim Corbett
Day 1 and Day 2 – Things to do at Hriday Bhoomi
We started from Faridabad at 7 a.m., took a 45 minutes break on the way and then reached Hriday Bhoomi just in time for lunch. I love returning to Jim Corbett Jungle. I simply enjoy it. And I am blessed that the forests keep calling me back, again and again. This was my fourth time this year and I was excited as always. We had a safari that afternoon. Our driver came to pick us at 2:15 and in 5 mins, we were at the jungle gate. I am not kidding Hriday Bhoomi is located right next door to the gate of the jungle. For those who may book a morning safari, you don’t have to worry about waking up too early or being late.
My husband was really looking forward to the safari more than me. It was his first time to Jim Corbett and trust me, his beginners luck worked for us. We had a tiger sighting for real. All those stories of tete-a-tete with a tiger came real. I have seen it in Pench and Kabini but never in Corbett., despite being a regular there. The best I have seen is an Asiatic elephant so far. But that day turned special. The big cat was truly mesmerizing and that fleeting moment of seeing it in its natural habitat brought abundance of joy and elation. We were ecstatic for sure. But at the same time, national park visits are not just about tiger or elephant sightings. I genuinely love safaris and I am drawn to the sounds of the wildlife, the rustle of the leaves, the ecosystem, and the calls of birds, deers, wild boars, monkeys, etc.
After the safari, we washed ourselves and rested for a while. For dinner, we had an Uttarakhandi thali waiting for us. The food was prepared with lot of effort and the best part was that it was freshly cooked and made with very less spices. We relished it.
Day 2 at Hriday Bhoomi was about lazying around and exploring the different corners of the house. Did I tell you Hriday Bhoomi has a swimming pool too? Oh yes, it does. And I noticed it when I looked down from my room balcony. An open air dining space is also coming up soon. I really loved their breakfast area, next to the terrace on the first floor. It has a lovely 180 degrees views of the village and the Corbett hillocks. In the day, the team drove us for a local lunch experience towards the kyari village. There was a stream of water where we sat and enjoyed the sun. And later we ate food at one of the maggi and tea stalls. They cook meals only on special request. It was very simple but soulful food. And even though there was dust and pollen around, we were happy to be in the village, away from the din of the city. Initially, we thought we wouldn’t be there for long but we stayed there for like 3 hours. Dipping our feet in the water and sipping some tea made it a fun experience. By the time, we returned, the sky was decked up for a gorgeous sunset. The meal in the night was warm and cozy. And once again, we rested well.
The next morning was about a short village walk and a wrap up to the stay. It was time to pack bags and head home. No one loves to return from holidays but there is always work that keeps calling back. I was glad that my mum-in-law felt happy and refreshed. It is important to take the elders of the family on these short getaways. It works to cheer them up.
Home-cooked Food is their USP
Hriday Bhoomi, the home stay in Jim Corbett not only provides peace and quietness but also good home-cooked meals. As a sustainable traveller, I often feel what is the need of 10 items for the buffet when we can do with a few. Of course, people need choices and I will not question that. But if given a chance, I am the happiest person, when food is not wasted. And this is what I like about homestays or small properties, food is cooked fresh, and only when ordered.
At Hriday Bhoomi too, they will ask for your options and they will serve what you need. We had the best combination of pulses, rice, vegetables, gur, bal mithai, jowar roti, salad etc, minus the greasiness. For breakfast as well, you can pick from the choices available. We requested for poori bhaji, boiled eggs, curd and aloo parantha with curd on the other day.
Why Hriday Bhoomi?
There are many resorts in Jim Corbett but several of them are located on the busiest road. At times, they get very noisy and congested. Hriday Bhoomi is located away in the warmth and coziness of the jungle. The rooms are very clean and spacious. There is plenty of closets and space for luggage. Another benefit of staying here is that although it is away from the Ramnagar market and in the countryside, it’s also on the doorstep of Jim Corbett National Park and you can reach for safaris in no time.
They arranged a perfect jeep driver for us for the safari. The driver was very polite and in absolutely no hurry to finish the safari even after spotting the tiger. The staff at Hriday Bhoomi also packed some tea and cookies for us to enjoy during the safari break. I am always appreciative and thankful of these little things that matter.
Also, we enjoyed our conversations with the owner. He was there at that time and it was good to hear from him how Hriday Bhoomi came into being. Mr. Narendra also helped us with the plan for the day 2. He sent over a staff member to guide and look after us. My family loved the hospitality. And overall, we brought back lovely memories from our jungle holiday. I would return to Hriday Bhoomi in a heartbeat.
Till I return with my new blog post about a new experience, be happy and keep travelling.