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Monteria Village, an authentic experience of rural India

The model village offers visitors with opportunities to get closer to nature and indulge in plenty of outdoor experiences through various activities

If anyone is looking for any offbeat destination from Mumbai or Pune, Monteria Village is a perfect place. It’s a destination designed to offer the visitor an elevated experience of a quintessential village life. The destination which is located at Khalapur of Raigad district, is just two hours drive from Mumbai or Pune. The entire objective is to take its guests closer to nature. They have nurtured an ecosystem that plants its guests in the daily life, culture, cuisine, entertainment, art and heritage of an Indian village. Every age group will find a path that leads them to their inner child and in turn, connect
to their authentic roots.

“From the moment a guest enters Monteria Village, they will find themselves transported into village life. They can be a farmer for a day, savour the goodness of home-cooked meals, play a game of lagori, laze on hammocks, swim in a lake and find simple joys of being in a stress-free set up that thrives on a well-nurtured ecosystem. The people who run the experiences are skilled artisans and workers, which adds a spontaneity to the activities. This is an apt option for anyone looking to slow down and spend quality time together with their loved ones,” this is how Rahi Vaghani, Managing Director, Monteria Resort Pvt. Ltd, described the destination. He also said that the product was developed during the pandemic time. “We used the pandemic time to develop the village. Around 300 workers relentlessly worked during the difficult time and we took utmost care of them,” revealed Vaghani.

On the property, one will find carpenters, furniture weavers, tailors, potters, metal and stone artists, bamboo and khaat weavers, blacksmiths, cobblers, and goldsmiths doing their works. Even guests can take some time to try their hand at a skill or take home an artifact. Activities include getting a haircut from a barber or a champi from a masseuse and taste the delightful makes of papad, pickle and shrikhand from women cooperative sellers.

Farming is another attraction of the village. Monteria Village believes in the future of agriculture and has adopted age-old techniques of open farming to modern adaptations of hydroponic practices. Traditional village techniques are executed using BioGas, Vermicompost, Gobar Brickets, Godan Ark and Floriculture greenhouse. Guests can sign up for a holistic one-of-a-kind farming course in the Dhanvantri take a walk through fresh produce grown on the farm.

While walking through the village if any one feels hungry there are plenty of options for food. As local stalls sell flavoursome pani puri, spicy chana jor garam or a spicy chaat to indulge in. There are ice golas and matka curd to choose from too. To quench a thirst, options available are coconut water, saunf water, kokum drink, marble soda (goti soda), buttermilk, or a cutting chai or coffee.

Those with an appetite for play will find their adrenaline rush in a game of lagori, tops, tyre rolling, a sway on a jhula, or a ride on a Kathiyawadi chhakdo. A quiet walk will lead to cave tunnel, a bamboo oxy-park or even a Lakshman Jhula replica. The village mela becomes a venue to socialise and an evening for folk music, dance and theatre performances.

‘The Kabila’ Experience

Monteria Village recently launched ‘The Kabila’ experience which is inspired by the banjaras, the wanderers. ‘The Kabila’ is an attempt to recreate the wandering experience far from the city’s hustle bustle. It (The Kabila) offers 50 well equipped tents erected in starstruck authentic rural imagery. The campsite is lined with 26 well-equipped toilets and bathrooms for the guests. The surrounding atmosphere of the campsites is bound to give a person the much-needed reason to take a break from modern life and recharge his/her energies. “The atmosphere here is really nice and will definitely rejuvenite me. I will come here again in winter,” said a 42 year old executive who doesn’t wish to be identified.

A single tent can accommodate up to four people. Each tent is equipped with a fan to keep the inside temperature cool. Not only that, each tent has six windows that can be zipped down for ventilation.

Near the tents there is a wide green space, benches and shades allowing visitors to enjoy their meals in the open. Group hammocks under tree covers are perfect nooks to read a book, watch the world go by or huddle together and chit chat.

Talking about the response, Vaghani said, “Since we opened it in February, our guests are from Maharashtra (mainly Mumbai & Pune) but of late people from Gujarat have also started visiting. Besides Maharashtra, our next focus will be in Gujarat and then slowly we will target other states. We are getting groups who have selected this venue as their reunion (schools & Colleges) and appreciated the overall ambience.”

Be it a day outing or an overnight experience, the property leaned on a modern outlook to offer the authentic traditional touch to family holiday, birthday parties, get togethers, kitty parties, wedding destination, and corporate events.

In the ultimate analysis, Monteria Village is a year-round destination because every season has its own charm in an Indian village.

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