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Tigers, Pool With A View And Cosy Cottages: Jungle Hut Is King Of Masinagudi


    Cottages, a lovely swimming pool that has the Nilgiris as a backdrop, and the occasional spotting of the tiger — there are so many reasons to stay at Masinagudi if you’re looking for a quiet getaway.

    King Of The Jungle

    No, no not the lion, we just mean Jungle Hut which has been reigning supreme in Masinagudi since the 80s. And with good reason. One of the first lodges to open in the forest reserve, it was opened by Joe and Hermie Mathias, but now their son, Vikram and his wife Anushri, are the charming hosts here.

    Cottages are quite far apart which means you’re ensured privacy, though it can be a bit scary if you’re a fraidy cat walking back to you room at night! There are two kinds of room options — standard and deluxe. The former is simple, and very much like a lodge. Think stone walls, a sit out to unwind with tea and watch deer glide by. If you’re looking for a bit more luxury, then pick the deluxe rooms. They’ve just redone four of their rooms and they are super cool. With warm forest colours, that tent-like feel but with modern amenities and cane chaise lounge chairs to curl up with a book, you may want to never leave!

    Around The Fire

    A short walk from the cottages is the main reception area where you can also relax with other guests, swap tiger sighting tales and have your meals. Impromptu bonfires and roasted potato evenings are quite common. It’s a lovely camp feel, and it’s recommended that you get Vikram to start regaling you with tales of The Hut. Ask if he remembers stories of Jalebi, the resident dog from many moons ago!

    Food is homely, but tasty — mostly a multi-cuisine buffet with Indian dominating. And while a nap is in order after lunch, make sure you sign up for jungle walks, and treks through the foot hills of the Nilgiris. Oh, and make time for a jungle safari. Deer, elephants, gaur, peacocks, snakes and tigers are all in the area, and you’re likely to tick off at least three from your list. Even the tiger isn’t so elusive.

    But at least half a day should be kept free to just do nothing but sit by the pool, and waddling in it. Why? Because the view from the pool is one of a kind. You can float about looking at the Nilgiris looming ahead {or behind you}, and if it’s a cloudy day or winter time, the mist at the top makes it magical!