I usually do not associate government accommodations and cleanliness together but GMVN Rajaji National Park was a clean place. Our huts were right inside the forest and it was a serene atmosphere unless the tourists themselves started blaring music. There was a group of tourists who did just that but thankfully they stayed only for a few hours and then left. It leaves me spell bound how people can be so callous and play loud music inside a jungle! The place is quite close to Haridwar and is a weekend getaway from Delhi.
The room had an attached bathroom and though quite basic it was clean. Government guesthouses can become quite apathetic to their services and guests. Rajaji National Park accommodation was an exception. I also hate carpets in the hotels as usually they are not maintained and give of a very offending smell to the entire room. Such was not the case at this park when we visited. My room had no carpet and that is a blessing in most of the budget Indian hotels!
There is one thing in which no one can beat government hotels in India and that is the location. All government guest houses are located at prime locations which private players can only wish for. Also there are off beat places where one will find only a government accommodation.
The food at the park was OK. Anyway after spending the day outdoors I build up a huge appetite and unless there is something drastically wrong with the food I eat well.
The staff at government guest houses also is an entity in itself. They don’t seem to be trained hotel management employees and though it makes for variety sometimes if becomes difficult to deal with them. The staff that we interacted with at the park was helpful.
In all I have fond memories of our visit to Rajaji National Park near Haridwar in Uttarakhand.
Rajaji National Park is situated quite close to the city of holy city of Haridwar in India. The photograph is of Ganga Canal at dusk which flows through the park. It is a short walk away from the only accommodation available inside the park. The accommodation is run by a government body and though it is very basic it is ok. Rajaji National Park is an excellent getaway from New Delhi. You can read more about Rajaji National Park on the net and see if it appeals to you.
When we visited the park we took just one safari in the jungle. The sightings were of wild boars and deer. But more than the sighting it was the feeling of being inside the jungle that was great. I mean if you live in a big city in India you may put your hair down to feel the breeze but it would be a fume saturated breeze in the end! To get some clean air one needs to get out! Now that in itself is a pity but what to do.
I also remember hearing a lot of birds near our huts. But we also had guests who would play loud music inside a national park! I sometimes seriously wonder why? I mean if you want loud music visit a pub in your city, why visit a national park? But of course I got no answers. The good bit was that those people left after a few hours.
And looking at the photo I wish I had a tripod or at least I used a stone to stabilize my camera. We were lucky that we got a room inside the park even though we just walked in without any advance bookings. I also remember very fondly that they offered tea at the reception. I anyway love tea but on that cold day it was an extra. Also such nice things usually don’t happen at government run guest houses. I wish to visit the park again!
I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quit my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!
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