With just four luxurious safari cottages and a maximum capacity of eight visitors, Flame of the Forest Lodge is focused on providing a very personal and flexible service for its guests. Wildlife safaris are tailored to the interests of the guests, whilst between safaris a variety of other activities can be arranged from the lodge, including yoga classes, cooking classes and visiting the local villages.
The lodge is nestled in 10 acres of land alongside the Banjaar River about 8 kms from the main tourist zone around Kisli Gate. Birds and wildlife are drawn to the river and can often be spotted within the grounds. The four cottages are connected to the central dining hall by a network of pathways, and have been built by hand by the local community built using traditional materials and craftsmanship.
All of the staff at the lodge are from the local village, and the lodge has very close ties with the local community. Community projects are organised with the local school to improve the environment, and the lodge is closely involved with reforestation in the local area. The lodge has its own water sources, but does not have a swimming pool as this takes water away from the local villages.
Open: The lodge is open from mid-October to the end of June each year.
Location: Flame of the Forest Safari Lodge is located on the banks of the Banjar River, near the Khatia/Kisili entrance gate to Kanha National Park.
Rooms: There are 4 safari cottages, one of which is designed for disabled access. They are built in the local traditional style, using mud and thatch. Each has a private veranda looking out towards the river. The en-suite bathrooms are spacious, with a shower and twin hand basins and lead out to an al fresco bath. Each cottage has its own machan or covered day bed, ideal for relaxing between game drives.
Activities: The main activity is game viewing in the national park. There are early morning and late afternoon jeep safaris with the lodge's naturalist guide. The lodge also offers guided trekking, cycling, nature walks and bird watching. The lodge is situated near the village of Kuthwahi and guests are welcome to visit and meet the local people. Yoga and Ayurvedic massage are available at the spa. Guests can swim in the river. Bush meals can be arranged at various locations near the lodge.
Facilities: Meals are served in the elegant dining hall, on the deck, in the garden, around the camp fire or by the river. There is a comfortable lounge and deck with a selection of reference books. The lodge has a coffee bar and a safari shop. The guest cottages are linked to the main lodge by a series of pathways and bridges, lit by hurricane lamps at night.
Dining: Meals are taken at individual tables in a variety of locations.
Children: Children of all ages are welcome.
Health: We recommend malarial prophylactics for travel to India.
Communication: There is no internet access at the lodge.
"Karan and Isa are excellent hosts and our cottage and its location by the river were wonderful. Dansing and Mohan are superb guides. Candlelit dinners are one of the features of this lodge but the lighting is too low to be able to see the food properly! The service is excellent and we would love to return to Flame of the Forest."