Hidden Hamlet - Bhanuthi & Shikari
ABOUT THE VILLAGES-
A small hamlet consisting of only 5-6 households, Bhanuthi is raw, rustic & untouched by the modern lifestyle.Due to its very small population, everyone in the village is almost like a tight knit family - working and laughing together, spending their days in the pursuit of their simple day-to-day activities. Another small secluded village in the Parashar region, Shikari is connected to Bhanuthi by a 20 minute rich forest trail. The place has a sweet charm to itself, with the perfect blend of patches of green and brown which makes for a very picturesque village.
ABOUT THE STAY-
Evergreen Abode is perched on the edge of the top of a hill, sloping into stepped-farmlands. It is surrounded by thick forest pine groves at the back, and the front opens up to expansive agricultural plantations. The stay has its own beautiful apple orchards and organic farmlands, where you can explore the day to day farming activities of the village.
Whistling Pines is located at the edge of a hill, within the confines of the quaint Bhanuthi Village in Mandi. Whistling Pines gets its name from the engulfing forests filled with beautiful green pines. It is a two-storey wooden chalet cottage, straight out of a children's fairytale book.
Pahadi Chulha Meals- Needless to say, meals cooked over the chulha are scrumptious. You can taste the various local himachali cuisines and also try your hand at making a few!
Treks and Trails
Short treks: Trek upto Tunga Mata, this is a 5km trail. A short snow trek from Pub to Bhanuthi village during winters will also delight enthusiastic travellers. This is about 3km long, and you can ask your local host for guidance.
Long treks: Visit Tunga Mata (a slightly steep climb), followed by a walk through lush meadows and grasslands all along. Rest at the Darba, the camp of the Van Gujars (shepherds). You’ll be able to spot wild strawberries in the summer and monsoon season.
The forest trails will lead you to a beautiful village named Shikari, 20 mins from Bhanuthi. Shikari has the perfect blend of patches of green and brown which make for a very picturesque village, with cute little stone houses and rustic wooden homes, a majestic backdrop of the pine forests and the clouds floating right before you.
Organic Farming in Shikari
Immerse yourself in the Arts and Science of Organic Farming through the local community. Our guide Pawan Thakur can take you through the do’s and don'ts. It’s the best time to learn the various techniques and methods used, what one requires and how to get started.
Bhanuthi and Shikari have 100 year old rustic ancestral homes that will make you want to stop and stare. Go for an idyllic stroll around the village, observe and take it all in while gaining knowledge about their local history, ancestral legends and folklore.
Sunrise and Sunsets
Bhanuthi’s sunrise and sunsets should not be missed at any cost! The locals can guide you to the best spots that are bound to leave you in complete awe. The sun’s rays filtering through the trees at golden hour drenches the village in an orangish-yellow light which is truly magical.
Storytelling Sessions and Stargazing
Some of the elders have immense knowledge about the history and culture of the village. If you’re a fan of stories, don’t miss out on the chance to indulge yourself in some good old folk tales while basking under the starlit sky!
Sing and Dance to the tunes of Pahari Nati
Nati is the traditional folk dance native to Himachal Pradesh. The term is used for both music and dance. If you love to dance, you definitely shouldn’t miss out! According to local people, Nati generally has stories which are narrated through songs. The locals dance in groups to the tunes of various local instruments and dialects. You can find this dance form either at a marriage or fair.
Learn the art of weaving!
You’ll find plenty of local weavers with age-old handlooms and ladies weaving woolens alongside them! You could strike up a conversation or simply observe the beautiful art and see how it works, it’s entirely up to you!
ABOUT THE HOST-
Evergreen abode's host Tek Singh and his family are a traditional ancestral family living in Shikari since a long time. They have seen the village evolve with time and have a vast knowledge about the village's local history and folklores.They mainly live a slow, sustainable life and are preoccupied with their day-to-day farming activities like cattle rearing and organic farming.
Whistring Pines host, Dharam Singh is a man of honor and has been living in Bhanuthi since a long time with his wife and four children. They are a small and loving family, focusing their energies in a positive outlook towards life and going about their day to day village activities. They live a simple but tough Pahadi lifestyle
HOW TO REACH-
Bhanuthi is at a distance of 78kms from Mandi. You can either hire a private car or take a volvo bus from Mandi till Panarsa and then take a cab ahead. (30kms to Bhanuthi from Panarsa).
Evergreen Abode- Tek Singh & Shakuntla Devi
Whistling Pines- Dharam Singh & Lata Devi