Glamping Spotlight: Aman-i-Khás, India

What could be more invigorating than waking up and walking out of your tent to see the starkly beautiful wilderness of the Ranthambore National Park? Aman-i-Khás is a luxury wilderness camp on the edge of the national park. Aman-i-Khás focuses on viewing wildlife and providing a five-star glamping experience. The name Aman-i-Khás comes from Sanskrit and Hindi words that mean “special peace.”

Aman-i-Khás is located in a rugged brushwood forest on the fringes of Ranthambore National Park. The surrounding area is composed of deciduous forest, open grasslands, and waterholes of a semi-arid expanse. The camp provdes access to the 1,334 square kilometers of the Ranthambore National Park. Ranthambore is a natural habitat for tigers and other exotic animals. In addition to wildlife sightings, guests can explore the region’s ancient forts and colorful rural villages nearby.

Aman-i-Khás offers 10 luxury tents each with soaring canopies. The tents resemble rich Moghul traveling tents of a days past. The frame is made of steel and is set on a raised concrete pad. The differences from an ordinary camping tent are immediately recognizable. The center of the tent, with its six-meter canopy, features an oversized daybed ideal for lounging. The bedroom area is fitted with a king-size bed flanked by twin writing desks. The bathroom area includes a shower, soaking tub, and toilet.

AmanTentInteriorPhoto: Aman-i-Khás website

Three separate tents house areas for dining, spa treatments, and relaxing. In the evenings, sit on the deck of your tent or join other camp visitors around the communal fireplace. Listen to the sounds of the wilderness settling down for the night, as you discuss the day’s sightings. The meals served include authentic Indian cuisine and a range of western dishes. Fresh produce and herbs used for meal preparation are grown in the camp’s own organic vegetable garden. Dinner most often concludes around a roaring outdoor fire.

The step-well pool, or bawadi, was modeled after the ancient step-wells that are traditional to the area. The design is a series of square concentric steps that converge deeper into the pool. The sunny terrace and grove of trees surrounding the pool provide privacy and make it incredibly relaxing. It’s especially refreshing to take a dip after returning from a daily excursion.

aman-poolPhoto: Aman-i-Khás website

Guided wildlife viewing excursions leave twice daily. Excursions last approximately 3.5 hours. The tours take guests into Ranthambore to spot indigenous wildlife. Prize predator sightings in the core of the park include tigers, leopards and smaller jungle cats. Chital deer, antelope and hyena can be seen roaming the savannah, while lakes and watering holes are home to the marsh crocodile and prolific birdlife. The open-top vehicles transport guests and provide excellent views. The best time to view game is in the early morning and late afternoon.

Visitors are invited to join guided nature walks through the low hills. These walks are led by a naturalist, as is another excursion that travels by SUV to the Banas Riverbed to spot water fowl and wading birds.

tigerPhoto: Aman-i-Khás website

Ranthambore National Park, once the hunting ground of the Maharajah of Jaipur, was declared a wildlife sanctuary in 1955. Following concerted conservation efforts and the launch of Project Tiger in 1973, the tiger population is now more visible and stable.

Aman-i-Khás is available for reservations from October to April, which is also the best time for wildlife spotting. Find out more about Aman-i-Khás.

Spotlight: Centara Grand Maldives Island Resort & Spa

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives delivers an exclusive five-star resort experience. Centara represents the apex of barefoot luxury and adventure travel. The stunning blue ocean water and exotic islands of the South Ari Atoll in the republic of Maldives set the backdrop for this amazing resort. Centara will unquestionably be a glamping experience you talk about for the rest of your life.

The resort provides a premium all-inclusive vacation experience, along with a perfect white sand beach and crystal clear water of the Indian Ocean. The resort features 112 suites and villas that are beach front or over water. Guest rooms are complete with a furnished living room area, bathroom with bathtub, or personal Jacuzzi Spa and heavenly rain shower, individually controlled air-conditioning, comfortably furnished terrace, flat-screen TV, Wi-Fi, and tea and coffee making facilities.

Whitewashed timber villas with thatched roofs are perched in the lagoon and linked to the island by wooden walkways, evoking the image of a tropical island community. Water Villas are set above the reef in the lagoon with a private stairway leading down to the water. Beach suites are tucked into the fragrant gardens. A white-sand beach rings the island. A suite can comfortably accommodate up to three adults or two adults and two children.

Under the resort’s Ultimate All-Inclusive Plan, this is an paradise island where cash is not required. Guests enjoy champagne breakfasts, superb cuisines for lunch and dinner, an open bar all day up to midnight, mini bar replenished daily, a sundowner cocktail party every evening, generous daily spa credits at Spa Cenvaree, snorkeling water sports and off-island excursions.

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Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives offers more than simply daytime sun, sea and sand. The resort features a variety of dining options, pools, recreation activities, fitness facilities, bars and lounges with nightly entertainment, Spa Cenvaree, and a kids club.

For the discerning leisure travelers, be sure to check out the Island Club. Guests who have booked Island Club Villas enjoy exclusive use of the Island Clubhouse, swimming pool, with a more expansive choice of beverages and popular spirits. Additionally, the club pool features cold towel service, tropical fruits, and refreshing sorbets served in the afternoon and a sun bed concierge service.

Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives is located on South Ari Atoll (Alifu Atoll) in the republic of Maldives and relatively close to Male’ International Airport (MIA). Maldives is an island nation, a compulsory purchase of seaplane transfer service from/to Male’ International Airport is necessary and required for all reservations. Seaplane air transfer time is only 25 minutes to the island.

centara-3A visit to Maldives is incomplete without experiencing the wonders of the underwater world. If you thought the aerial view was breathtaking, exchange your sunglasses for a mask and take a glimpse underwater. This is where the real treasure of the Maldives is hidden. Diving and snorkeling enthusiasts will feel right at home with the house reef complete with sunken shipwreck. Other top dive spots in Maldives are within an easily reachable distance from the resort as well. Maldives is one of the best diving destinations in the world and offers ample opportunities for the beginner as well as for more experienced divers. You don’t have to be an experienced diver to enjoy the fascinating underwater world of the Maldives. A snorkel, mask and fin is your passport to enrich your holiday experience and to encounter many species of playful fish, turtles and other curious sea-creatures that may be residing in the house reef.

Centara Grand is a divine destination perfect for couples, honeymooners, families, groups, and adventurous travelers. Visit the website for more information and to book your next vacation.

Remote Glamping at 4 Rivers Floating Lodge

To say that 4 Rivers Floating Lodge is remote does not quite accurately describe the complete peace and tranquility that guests will experience at this luxury lodge, which can only be reached by boat.  After a short boat ride, guests will round the bend of Southwest Cambodia’s Taitai River to see the twelve floating tents of 4 Rivers Lodge.  There are no roads or neighbors nearby to detract from the experience of being completely immersed in the serene wilderness of the Cardamom Mountains and surrounding lush, tropical rainforest.

The well-appointed luxury tents of 4 Rivers are spacious and handsomely furnished.  Each tent is decorated in neutral tones with red accents and features a flat-screen television, Wi-Fi, and a mini bar.  The sides of the tents can be rolled up to provide a panoramic view of the sparkling water of the Taitai River right outside. Each accommodation has a private patio which features large lounging chairs, perfect for sunbathing or sipping a cocktail while enjoying the natural entertainment of a colorful sunset. There are steps from every tent straight into the clear, cool water of the river below.  Each tent has its own spacious en suite bathroom with a round wooden tub and rainfall shower.

 

The activities at 4 Rivers Floating Lodge all center around the unspoiled jungle landscape.  Excursions to the nearby waterfall provide guests with an opportunity to bathe in its cool pools and receive a natural water massage. Guided tours are available which will take guests into the thick of the mountains where they will meet friendly locals ready to share their customs. In the evening, guides are available to escort guests via boat to the perfect vantage point to watch the sun set over the river or watch the fireflies which are in such abundance, they make the night sky twinkle like Christmas lights.  Guests can also choose to explore the Taitai river solo in a kayak or canoe and to try to fish for their supper.  If you catch something, the resort’s kitchen staff will cook it up for you!  Wildlife are in abundance in the Cardamoms and guests should keep an eye out for any of the many species that reside here, including over 550 species of birdlife, rhinoceroses, tigers, gibbons, and elephants.

Dining at 4 Rivers is a special treat, featuring dishes that showcase international cuisine with a Cambodian flair.  Lunch and dinner are prix fixe, with lunch consisting of three courses, and dinner consisting of four.  A separate vegetarian menu is also available and the friendly staff are happy to accommodate any special dietary needs.

The 4 Rivers Floating Lodge is the type of resort that you will feel good about staying at.  The owners, Anna and Valentin, emphasize social responsibility and ecologically-friendly concepts.  They employ individuals from the local village and teach them English and how to use computers, but also ways to preserve and conserve in this developing nation full of natural wonders.  The lodge also utilizes many eco-friendly elements such as modern composite materials instead of wood and a waste water treatment system.  The owners have plans to implement even more eco-friendly elements to the resort soon.

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