Sakleshpur and adjacent areas are beautiful - filled with nice green trees and many different birds. The whether was nice and cool when we went (January). Swarga is a eco-tourist resort with well equipped cottages set in a beautiful valley amidst coffee plantation, green meadows and river Hemavathi. We (family with one 3 year old and one 6 year old) wanted a relaxing holiday away from the crowd and we had it at Swarga. Chirag, our host at Swarga was very friendly and a good company. With many friendly dogs, a retired race horse and cattle around makes it a great destination for animal lovers (also a friendly place for travelers who want to take their pets along).
Best Experience: We enjoyed the many discussions we had with Chirag on various topics - coffee plantation, race horses, dogs, wild life around Sakleshpur, renewable energy (Swarga uses quite much solar energy, bio/gobar gas, LED and CFL lighting). We liked the bath in the river Hemavathi (only around 2 ft water when we went but that did not stop us from taking a bath there). The walk around the plantation and mild slopes were refreshing. Rope walking was an interesting activity in the resort
Any long weekend in Bangalore and families start looking out for destinations to explore esp if it kid's vacation time. So we found ourselves in the same situation1st May 2015 long weekend, son's vacation and not left many choices as most of the hill stations were overbooked. Then one colleague suggested this 'Hoysala Village Resort'. We checked with them and booked Suite room for 2 nights. We reached the resort around 12. 00 p. M. And were welcomed by a courteous staff. They applied vermilion on our forehead and gave marigold garlands. Property is well maintained and we headed to our rooms after the payment formalities. They have good greenery on the resort and good open space for recreation. Our Suite room was spacious and well kept. However they could improvise on the bathroom.
All the meals are included in the package and the spread is really good. Especially the live counter where they serve authentic Karnataka cuisine. We simply loved the taste of the all dishes served in the live counter. Restaurant staff was courteous. They even had live music played during Dinner which added to the ambiance. One attraction of the resort is the Live Performance which is held in the evenings. We thoroughly enjoyed the traditional dance by local artists and Bharatnatyam by school kids. I terms of amenities they have couple of indoor games and a small library too. We did not like the pool much as it was much smaller than expected. Overall experience in the resort was awesome. We enjoyed the trip despite hot weather. I strongly recommend this resort to fellow travellers.
I have managed to click the common drongos many a times, on power cables, open branches, and these lovely beauties often pose for the images and never disappoint you.
But this time at Sakleshpur, we were in for a surprise. Just walking down by the backwaters of Hemavathi river, known for the famous drinking scene of MungaruMale(A Kannada blockbuster movie), we were watching the brahminy kites and their juveniles in flight and enjoying the rain. After spending more than an hour clicking these raptors, we moved ahead, where a black and orange coloured small bird flew across the road and perched itself on a tree, a beautiful minivet but scarlet or long tailed not sure, I got a record shot of the birdie at close quarters, thanks to the honking lorry driver, it was not that sharp an image.
There were bulbuls, flowerpeckers, golden flame-backed woodpeckers, indian robin, spotted dove, parakeets, coucals all around. And my friend managed to find a juvenile brahminy kite on a far branch, which to him was a big gubbi(kannada name for a sparrow). We managed a couple of decent record shots and continued our walk to our home stay, laughing at our friend for whom everything was a gubbi, small gubbi, big gubbi, orange gubbi, red gubbi, white gubbi etc etc
And suddenly, right in front of us, flew a long tailed black gubbi, after a long search for it without any success, we walked down to the homestay, with me explaining to them about the racket tailed drongos and its mimicking capabilities.
The next morning, we walked up the coffee estate, to find the minivet high up on a tree and spent some time listening to the whistle of the brain-fever bird, which seemed to come from a far away land. And back we were to the spot where our previous afternoon was spent, where we were welcomed by a racket tailed drongo, sitting on a branch out in the open by the roadside. It flew before we could click away few bytes of our memory, and as we looked around, four of us looking in four different directions, one could only here us say \'racket tailed drongo\', we were literally surrounded by them. They were flying across, from one branch to another, sometimes single.. sometimes double, this place was filled with these birds and many others most of which we failed to identify. Atlast I got one or two decent captures of the drongo and its racket tail. The rain and the clouds made it difficult for us to photograph, but the drongos and other birds were out singing and flying during the very small intervals of time when the sun\'s rays blessed the greenery around and provided some relief from the downpour.
Bangalore->Sakleshpura->Donigal(Manjarabad Fort)->Sukurwarsante->Kumbarahalli->Bridge with Backwaters on both sides(the stretch from here to about a 100 mts ahead) is filled with bird life. But beleive me this place is loaded with nature and its beautiful small winged creatures.
Swarga is the best place to stay here, the very friendly host Chirag with his loving pack of dogs, and the beauty of Sakleshpur makes it worth the experience. I recommend this place for people who love coffee, who love beer, who love to trek or walk around the estates and backwaters, who love dogs and the ones who just want to be one with nature. One can carry a book and spend time reading it with lots of coffee, or you can carry your spouse along and spend time with the beer :) , or you can turn adventurous, walk down the estates or along the backwaters and come back hungry for the delicious food. Chirag sees to it that you never get bored, as he keeps you engaged with his talks and shares his knowledge about everything around, from coffee beans to offtracking with the 4x4. Then there is his pack of the most adorable dogs, and at the end of the day you will surely want to carry ginger(the dachshund) along with you back home. Cottages are clean and decent with the ethnic feel and touch to it, and the food we simply loved it. Also the boys work tirelessly with a smile on their face.
Just the stretch from the gate to the cottages needs to be taken care of during rainy season.
My wife and I drove down to Hoysala Village from Bangalore and this was one of our best holidays. It just couldn\'t have been better. We were taken care of from the time we got down from the car. The check was smooth and were told who we could reach out to in case of any help that we needed.
Best Experience: We were served lime juice the moment we reached the front desk. We didn\'t expect it, we were thirsty and the timely gesture made us feel at home. Everyone in the resort kept greeting us each time we met them. The resort isn\'t very large but has all the facilities like a swimming pool, activity area, ayurveda massage and conference rooms. It has a very earthly look and feel of a home and is clean and tidy. The rooms are spacious and have just enough furniture for comfort while making you feel the space around. The food is served hot and the waiters are polite and take care of your food requirements well. We had ordered for Amritsari fish ( please make sure you try it ). It was simply the best. We had ordered for caramel custard during lunch on one of the days. However, we had come late and it wasn\'t available. Imagine our surprise, that when we came to the dining room for dinner that evening, the chef had specially made caramel custard for us !
Worst Experience: We just hope that the resort continues to strive to give the best to the guests. The service is fast and employees are polite. No one tries to intrude into your personal space, the food is good and I hope the resort continues to make vacations of the guests better and better.
From the moment we arrived Everything. The Room. The Food. The Pool. Was just Perfect. The Welcome Drink was Refreshing & Had the right blend of Natural Ingredients. The Resort was Beautifully maintained and Spotlessly Clean. The resort Staff were very friendly and helpful throughout our stay. The Heritage Style and the Architecture of the Resort is Stunning. The Landscape near the Pool is beautiful and has a Tropical Feel. The Room is very Spacious and the bathroom is huge. The food at the Restaurant was Fantastic and a wide variety of Seafood Cuisine. Every little details in the resort has been handled with lot of care. "AMAZING RESORT FOR A FAMILY VACATION ".