August has been very kind to me. Now that it’s coming to an end, I can’t thank my stars enough for making me travel so much this month. The Universe literally conspired and made sure I explore new places every weekend. So much so that that people have been asking me if I don’t get tired of working the entire week and travelling the weekends. Now that I think, I’ve not just sat at home and enjoyed a lazy day this month. That doesn’t seem a possibility for next month either but I am not complaining!
Being out of town for three consecutive weekends, I was not really up for any travel last weekend. But then the Universe pulled some strings and I found myself headed to Dehradun on Friday night. Though I have been to Dehradun a couple of times, but it has always been something of a transit-town for me. We were headed to Hathipaon this time, on an invite from See Green Lodges to spend some time at their quaint little home-stay. You can check out the property here.
An hour’s drive from Dehradun, Hathipaon is a perfect little Himalayan hamlet, far enough from the hustle-bustle and crowds of Mussoorie, but not so far anyway. The village gets its name because it looks like the foot of an elephant from George Everest Point, located a few kilometers from Hathipaon. We reached See Green Lodges at around lunch time and were pleasantly surprised. A young man with a pleasant smile welcomed us and promptly showed us our rooms.
See Green Lodges is owned by a couple from Mumbai and their story is something that many of us have dreams of replicating. In their own words -” My husband had always dreamt of a place in the hills. When his dream became my obsession too, I cannot recall. But here we are with our very own place in the mountains. What we have to offer is a simple structure with 3 rooms and a spacious dining place. Definitely not a sophisticated resort, the atmosphere here is casual and informal. Now we don’t have any in-house entertainment but beautiful meadows to picnic in. We have no fancy music systems but the chirping of birds during the day cicadas at night will make up for it.” Now who wouldn’t want a home like that in the hills?
See Green is located at a strategic point that has a huge lush green forest on one side, the village temple on another and an entire settlement behind it. The rooms are comfortable and nicely done, with a certain old-world charm to them. We were happy to see people stopping by for meals at the See Green cafe, which meant that the food was nice too. A special mention goes to the caretakers of the property who seem to leave no stone unturned when it comes to hospitality. The couple of days that we spent here were all about nature, good food, Himalayan stories and little bouts of happiness which came in the form of travel surprises.
If you ever land up here, don’t forget to try their waffles and honey-ginger-lemon tea. We tried a few things on the menu and they were delicious. The staff prepare everything from scratch so you have to give them time to prepare meals, but then that’s one thing about home stays- they are not hotels. I could go back to See Green Lodges only for the food- everything was that good!
They also have a small in-house library and a travel magazine desk if you wish to spend your day reading. Or you could go for a few easy hikes in the direction of your choice. See Green Lodges are located at a strategic location so the hikes to George Everest Point, Wishing Well and Benong Bird Sanctuary are on the menu as well. We did a hike to George Everest Point and were absolutely enchanted by what we saw.
The beauty of Hathipaon is that you’re away from the crowds but not too far for a lunch at the Mall Road. More on how we spent our time at this enchanting little village coming up soon.