Bandhavgarh is the go to National Park for anyone wanting to see the tigers in their natural habitat. It may need a few safaris for you to spot a tiger and then see the diversity of the rest of jungle like spotting a sloth bear or bird watching. If you are done with nature, Bandhavgarh also offers heritage in the form of caves and rock sculptures. You can go for village walks and see some of the folk art on the doors of most houses. In the middle of all this you need a comfortable place to relax and soak in the serenity of the jungle without ever feeling that you are not in the jungle.
Kings Lodge Bandhavgarh by Pugdundee Safaris offers a perfect place to be inside the jungle and still have all the comforts and luxuries at your disposal. Now being a premium brand in jungle lodges, they offer all that you expect – good food freshly made by their in house team, a swimming pool for those who want to dust off their safari tiredness with water, a lounge to gather with your old and new friends and big luxurious rooms with all possible facilities. My favorite part of Kings Lodge was the generous sit out outside my room with a view of the wild.
What I loved most about Pugdundee Safaris is their impeccable service like the breakfast and the evening tea that they served us in the jungle. I admire the way they professionally pack the food and then unpack it at designated places in the jungle using the Jeep’s engine space as table and how they made sure we left no trash in the jungle. It never felt that we missed anything in either the breakfast or the evening snacks because we were not having it in the plush lodge but in the jungle. Their safari team is not just well trained in being a naturalist but also in serving the customers well.
Let me take you through their décor that is like a glimpse into the art forms of central India. Furniture is made of polished raw wood – and most of the pieces retain their original shape. So a slice of tree trunk becomes a tabletop or a frame to hold lamps and a bunch of roots become the base of the table. Branches become the handles for cupboards and bookcases. A display on wall uses the dried leaves to creatively display the diversity of forest and also to tell the guests what they should look out for on safaris or on walks around the lodge.
Art decor at Kings Lodge Bandhavgarh
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Doors and other wooden panels of Kings Lodge Bandhavgarh have the animals of jungle engraved on them. You can almost go around the place guessing what is what and did you meet these creatures on your jungle safari or not. If this was not enough, you see wooden masks on the walls – something that we associate with the tribal world. These masks are not very sophisticated and are usually carved out of raw wood and most of the times left unpolished. Loud features and expressions represent the simple unveiled lives of tribes of central India.
Gond paintings done using dotted lines by the Gond tribals of the region adorn the walls. In subtle colors they also replicate the life of jungle on canvas. Manav Khanduja – wild life enthusiast and entrepreneur behind Kings Lodge told me that they commissioned these paintings especially for this property. Some of them are by the family of famous Gond artist Janghad Singh Shyam.
In the evening the place is lit with oil lanterns. The pathways defined by the lanterns look mesmerizing and with their limited light create an ambience of their own.
Check out Kings Lodge when you plan your next tiger safari holiday to Bandhavgarh national park.