THE HIDEOUT, ANOOTHA ANJOOTH, UTTARKASHI
Anootha Anjooth is an area of unique natural beauty, in the Uttarkashi district. Guests are invited to join the host, Mukesh Jagmohan Sign Chauhan and his family, at this The Hideout. The guest will leave feeling like part of Mukesh’s family and part of his vision: to rejuvenate mountain homes whilst preserving the local traditions and communities.
The convenient way to get here is to come from Dehradun and as you climb higher up the mountains, the rush and business of the city blends away. The fresh air and quiet surroundings make way for a fresh perspective, as arriving in the village feels like a step back in time. Centuries old traditions of women collecting grass for their livestock in giant heaps on their back and cleaning their rice crop on their roof add to this feeling. This inhalation of new air into your lungs extends to your heart as you realise the kindness of strangers, because in the mountains there are no strangers – a friend of Mukesh is a friend of every house.
Another thing that blends is all forms of tourism. One of the most appealing things about staying here that it is completely devoid of other tourists.
The Space :
Guests will visit the modern family village house but the majority of their time will be spent at the traditional farmhouse. The house is only accessible by a 4 km trek, which adds to the feeling of a hideout. The farm house is a back to basics experience, the two bottom rooms where the family kept their cattle until recently, and the two top rooms have been converted into the kitchen and sleeping areas. At the moment there is no running water or washroom, so in order to get to the water supply one must walk about ten minutes making it an engaged experience. The farm house is surrounded by an utterly undisturbed landscape, where one can catch occasional unexpected glimpses of the snow capped Himalayas. Yards away is the families’ own temple, where you are encouraged to join them in worship. The ingredients for cooking are fresh and locally sourced and cooked over a traditional wood fire which produce a distinct oaky flavour.
Guest Interaction :
Guests will be we welcomed into Mukesh’s family by his wife, two children, parents as well as a very close extended family and neighbors. The host is one of the most interesting parts of this homestay as he is a journalist and television reporter who is passionate about improving the lives of Himalayan people. He believes strongly that traditional mountainous homes should be restored and he hopes by restoring his through tourist business he can inspire others to do the same. The farmhouse was built by his grandparents and Mukesh shares stories of when he was a boy living there. It is clear to see that the peace and quiet of this little corner of the world is a paradise for the Chauhan family, which they generously want to share with others.
Each day focuses on a different way to connect with nature – birdwatching, trekking, foraging for food – all of which Mukesh has a wealth of knowledge about.
Guests are free to spend their time as they wish, however, it's advisable to take a break from hectic lives and follow the gentle schedule of the traditional mountain home.
How to get there :
Bus to Uttrakashi leaving from Dehradun every morning at 7am from Dehradun and Rishikesh – get down at Devi Dhar and Mukesh will collect you on scooter or if not, will be happy to guide you further including for the 4 km hike (bear this in mind when packing).
1)Clothing: April to Dec: Cottons with light woollens; Dec to March: Heavy woollens. If you want to enjoy the snowfall, we suggest you to pack a windcheater and snow boots.
2) As you may need to hike a bit, we suggest you to pack light.
3) Carry your own towels, soaps and other toiletries.
4) Please carry a handy flashlight/torch with extra batteries as there is no power back-up.
5) You’ll be amidst wilderness while hiking or exploring around. Do carry insect-repellent ointments, oils or creams to stay protected from seasonal bugs.
6) Trekking shoes, water bottles.
7) Handy flashlight(s).
We look forward to having you with us in the lost lands of the Himalayas. Please write to email@example.com for any reservation related queries or call +91 8755429629.
We are operating without electricity and we don’t serve gourmet meals. We live and promote the philosophy of ‘smart minimalism’ and we are an ‘absolute no’, if you are seeking conventional hospitality.
We coexist with nature and these areas are prone to wild mammals, insects and snakes so one needs to be careful and one is responsible for one’s own safety.
Content contributed by Hugh and Kate, volunteers from the United Kingdom. The pair graduated from University in 2017 and they have since travelled and worked in different European countries, including the UK, Switzerland, Austria, and Greece. Whilst exploring India they have continued to pursue their passions of social work and writing. They joined Green People in May 2019 and toured the new Hideouts, researching and writing about these experiences while also offering the hosts a practical experience of what hosting will entail. Both are freelance writers and volunteers and can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com.