Adding some information about the place of stay, that is, The Oak Chalet Resort, Mukteshwar : http://gahanaorchards.com/
The entire orchid is owned by Manoj Mehar, who has built 2 properties and his own house on the hill slope. The first property, closest to the road is called the Somerset Lodge and is about 2.5 kms from the Mukteshwar Temple. The property has 4-5 rooms but its a closed room with no window views. There’s a kitchen and a dining hall ofcourse. The picture titled – the perfect house is from Somerset Lodge itself.
Once at Somerset, you have to walk downhill on a narrow trekking trail which leads to an old house surrounded by a well maintained garden. The house is owned by Manoj himself. Manoj is a professional trekker and leads groups for high altitude treks in the region. Although he owns the properties, it is mostly run and managed by his staff, Hemu and Bahadur, and is supervised by his uncle.
Further ahead from his place, you cross a small stream of water and admist dense woods arrive at the Oak Chalet resort. I might have a few pictures of the resort but what would really do justice to the amazing location is this photo sphere: https://plus.google.com/photos/102529676064447925776/albums/5939770898099184897/5939770912838651858?pid=5939770912838651858&oid=102529676064447925776
Oak Chalet was built 4 years back and has 4 rooms (2 on ground floor and 2 on first) and 3 tents. The place is extremely quiet since its away from the road and the valley has limited settlement. The kitchen and dining hall are made in a separate hut in the periphery. (So basically the place is a honeymoon spot and we were sooo mistaken )
The resort (?) gets its name from the interiors done in the rooms, that is, wooden floorings, light brown textured walls and huge windows on 2 walls of the room. Bahadur looks after Oak Chalet, cooks food that you’d want to eat, serves bed tea, etc etc. Bahadur can also arrange a bonfire on request. Running hot water (solar water heaters) and a clean western toilet comes with every room. Food is top notch and cherry on the cake is the local produce which is both served and sold.
There are multiple trekking paths that originate from this place. You can trek to the Mukteshwar top, or a wild bird spotting walk in the woods that ultimately leads to a small waterfall in the valley. Bahadur or one of his men will accompany you for the waterfall ofcourse. In the vicinity, you can visit the Mukteshwar temple, Chauli ki Jali (for valley views) or Bhimtal-Sattal-Naukuchiyatal circuit but that would be 2 hours drive one way.
I’d strongly recommend either of the first floor rooms because the valley and sunrise views are amazing from those huge windows.
Cost: 1700 per person per day (is what we paid, you can negotiate ofcourse)
Manoj: 05942-286165, +9837787501
Here are some pictures of the property:
The bonfire spot with the dining hall right behind it
The dining hall with books, carrom, badminton racquets etc.. The kitchen right behind it. You can actually walk in the kitchen and cook for yourself, shall you feel like
The room ofcourse. Not the best of shots, I know!
The trekking trail used to reach the resort.. The walk is about 500mts, 15mins on a gradient incline/ decline which should be doable by all..
Somerset lodge area. The rooms are towards the extreme end of the picture. The property is indeed nice with properly maintained flowers and gardens but then, the views.. and the serenity..
This picture is actually clicked from the first floor room’s window
Feel free to shoot your queries, bricks and bats or whatever.. As far as the travel tale and photos are concerned, I’m done here!