The three village houses are located in the villages of Deora, Alai and Jwalabanj. The walking itself is not challenging, and you will have a guide and porters so that you can enjoy every minute. The area is typical of Himalayan foothills, with pine forests and rice terraces. You will pass small villages, well away from the interruption of roads and civilisation. It is a deeply relaxing walk, where you can stop for as many tea breaks as you wish before moving on past a land unchanged for centuries.
All your food and drink (including alcohol) is included and the food prepared is fresh and local to the area. The joy of the Village Walks is that hardly anyone has visited the region – it is a totally fresh and unique experience where the simple interaction with the local community becomes a magical occasion. The communities have had little exposure to tourism and as such they are very interested in welcoming you into their way of life and making sure your visit is wonderful.
The village houses are simple and traditional, yet Shakti have installed exceptionally comfortable beds and linen. There are mostly two rooms in each Village House, and Shakti have installed western toilets (not en-suite) and a shower hut which uses a hot water bucket. It is simple, but the staff make for a comfortable visit and the experience is worth the simplicity.
In short, you feel ultimately privileged to be given this window into the lives of the communities you pass through, a snapshot into the India that hasn’t welcomed hordes of endless tourists, and retains its identity and spirit. You leave wondering whether you should tell everyone about how amazingly untouched the area is, or remain silent in the knowledge that this is one of those secrets best kept closely guarded.