Magical, Luxury Or Budget: 10 Homestays To Check Into When In Kodaikanal

    Often underestimated in favour of Ooty, the more popular hillstation, Kodaikanal is still untouched by hoards of tourists. While there’s been enough to make it a big town, the charm of the hills, misty mornings, evening boat rides and old-world vibes are still strong here. Channelling those countryside feels, are these homestays. From luxury English cottages to more trendy houses, here’s where you can check into for a true sense of Kodai.

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    Misty Cove

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    Dalethorpe Homestay

    Nestled amidst pine groves, eucalyptus trees and rocks, Dalethorpe is a secret we were loath to give away. A typical English bungalow, the home is built from rock, and there are two rooms in the main house. We particularly love the heritage cottage, however, that is hidden behind a hillock, further away from the main quarters. And the estate grounds are massive, so you can actually hideaway without once leaving the property. More so since they have delicious home-cooked meals on offer. And hookah!

    Misty Cove

    Mystical, luxurious and sheer indulgence, it’s hard to take me away from the 75-year-old Misty Cove. Set on lush, manicured lawns, overlooking the gorgeous lake, four cottages, each with two massive rooms, make up Misty Cove. Throw in a fireplace, stone walls and you’ve got yourself an English countryside home. But what’s great is that inside, the beds, bathroom and even televisions are up-to-date. Looking onto the lake from your private verandah may take up most of your day, but who’s complaining.

    Serenita Homestay

    A cottage-style B&B, the Serenita Homestay wins approval and applause for location — on the hillside with the entire valley for a view! The owners {a charming family of four} will instantly understand why you’ve escaped the hustle bustle of the city because that is exactly what they did, from all the way from Mumbai. Settle into your fairytale that gives you a secluded spot with a comfy bed, bath and kitchenette. But there’s a fabulous chef in-house, who’ll whip up everything from Indian and Continental to Sichuan and sandwiches. At night, just take your chair and look at the twinkling lights in the valley, and then for a treat for city folk, just look at the starry skies.

    Atman Homestay

    Right on the banks of a little stream, this one is homely and spacious. And by homely, I don’t mean simple. It exudes warmth, and when you check in, you’ll see it’s exactly like you’re living in a lovely house. There’s a large drawing room to unwind in, a chic dining area and rooms with spectacular views. The owners are happy to chat with you and give you touristy tips. And they’re equally happy to just leave you be. I’d go back for the bay windows in the rooms, and the rejuvenating rain showers in the bathroom. Oh, plus the fresh breakfast that ranges from dosas and chole bhatura to tuna sandwiches and eggs to order.

    Villa Lakeside

    A charming homestay from which you can practically wade into the lade, this one is all about old-world charm. The cottage has three rooms and it’s great for even groups of 6-8 to unwind at. In winter, make sure to get a fire going and in summer, lounge in the lovely garden, and bask in the sun, but still with a nip in the air.

    Lofty Meadows

    A restored English bungalow, Lofty Meadows will ensure you check into pages of history. Period furniture, wooden architecture and flooring, expect to be pampered with rooms as large as city apartments, and a garden that will make you never want to leave. Oh, and did we mention they have amazing traditional meals here. Sign us up already!

    Villa Rose Homestay

    Slightly conservative in that they don’t allow alcohol or smoking {but hey, to each his own, right?}, Villa Rose will sort you out with three fully- equipped bedrooms, and a view that you couldn’t even imagine. If you’re an early riser, head off to the garden balcony armed with a cup of tea {or coffee, we don’t judge} as the mist slowly rises with the sun. It’s magical, apparently.

    Rhythms Cottage

    Looking for comfort and location over luxury? Pick this cutesy little cottage that’s just 2 kilometres from the lake. With a garden to lounge in, there are two rooms on offer – one that even opens onto the garden. While it’s simple, the set menu for breakfast is great. And at just INR 3,500 for up to six guests, this is a real bargain.

    Kodai Lake Cottage

    A stone’s throw from the lake, this one is cosy, wooden and just out of an Enid Blyton book. Ideal for a group of six to 10, there are three large bedrooms and if you’re up for some cooking, then the kitchen is also open to you. A proper getaway, especially if privacy is your priority.

    Dream Homestay

    Two very English cottages made of stone are part of the Dream Homestay property, each with four rooms – perfect for families, large groups of friends or even an informal off-site with colleagues. There’s also a single-room cottage if you’re planning a honeymoon-esque getaway. Set on a hill, the views from the garden are magnificent. Make sure to catch a sunrise and sunset when here, with a cup of tea in hand.