There are people who go on a holiday to see things and there are people who go on holiday because they have seen enough things. The first one likes to hop from China Peak to Lovers Point to the Tibetan Market on the Mall Road (assumption: every touristy place has a Mall Road) and tired from the busy day of holiday, they sit in a restaurant and tuck into Chicken Butter Masala and make the program of the next day of holiday before they can go home and take rest. The second type of tourists go on a holiday and just sit in the lap of nature (hills, beach whatever..), breathe in fresh air, take long walks, drive around and see more of the pretty artwork from God’s own gallery, pick a point and don’t mind spending a few hours there and sit in the evening with their favourite drink while the dinner cooks over slow fire and talk about building a house in these nestles one day. They also make plans about the gorgeous and sweaty trekking trip the next day of holiday and sometimes they do go. At the end of it they drive back home from a relaxing trip, fresh, recharged and ready to take on the world. There is no hierarchy between the two types of tourists. Infact every tourist of the second type has been the first type sometime earlier in life, it’s just the Law of Gradation of nature.
The first type of tourist is not the Ramgarh tourist. The long green walks under the gaze of tall peaks, moonlight swept narrow roads where you can have an evening walk of a few miles and would still be able to greet no more than few tens of people is definitely the call of second type of tourists. The charm of Ramgarh lies in the time that you can spend with yourself, the silence in which you can hear your breath and the comfort of Ramgarh lies in the fact that you can still drive under an hour, spend time on Nainital Mall Road, buy the souvenirs of the latest trip and come back to yourself at Ramgarh all in half day of work at holiday. To best describe Ramgarh is to imagine a large fruit orchard spanning several hills and make a few houses in between. Ramgarh is famous for its fruit orchards and churns out tons of plums, apples, apricots and peaches. At an altitude of 4800 ft, Ramgarh is not too high and is drivable from Delhi and nearby towns on a good weekend. At 340 kms from Delhi and 55 kms from Kathgodam (the last point in the plains after which the hills start). The place has had its worshippers and the prominent ones being Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore and the prolific Hindi writer Mahadevi Verma. There is something in these places which somehow finds creative geniuses, some known and many more unknown. There is a still a library dedicated to Mahadevi Verma at a walking distance from V Resorts () property, the V Resorts Ramgarh Cottage. British having the credit of introducing many of our Country’s idyllic spots (think Shimla, Dalhousie) were quick to spot the potential in Ramgarh also and made a cantonment there. After all they knew how to live life and they still do (I remember the times I lived in UK when there were no work related phone calls after 6 pm and if somebody did, he would start with an apology for calling so late and checking if it was ol’right to talk to me at that time Only calls I received which started without an apology and straight to work were the calls from India and at that time it was 10:30 pm or 11:30 pm depending on DST. My hard working countrymen saw no day or night… sharing the same blood.. I am no different). There are several high and mighty of our country who have built a charming abode in Ramgarh including our ex-Prime Minister I K Gujral, Late H E Madhavrao Scindia (the Princely family of Gwalior) and recently some corporate honchos of Delhi (a group of more than fifty people) who struck diamonds in the IT and dot com boom of India have made a vast colonnade of row houses in Ramgarh in an exclusive township. One can bump into a famous actress or a large company CEO somewhere in Ramgarh walks and see her without the sheens she wears in her artificial self.
V Resorts Ramgarh is a charming cottage all of just four rooms, each with as much of the wall as the large glass windows so that hills are almost on the bed. This is particularly pretty since we are one of the few classy places which occupy a place on the top of a hill with large and wide expanse of hills and valleys right in the line of sight with no buildings, poles or bamboos obstructing the VIEW. The large sit-outs make the evenings and the mornings heavenly and draws you closer to nature and to yourself. On a fine evening in the mood-lit courtyard with our drinks in hand and the barbecue roast next to us, the owner of the property (who was visiting from Delhi) confided in me the story of how he bought the property. The brave heart who is fond of nature and all its games was looking for a property in the region and was torn between choices or the lack of it when he came to know that a tiger was spotted in the area and made a kill last evening. Our man rushed to the spot and fell in love with the charm of the place laced with the now true story of a Tiger’s hunt. He could also hunt out the owner and made him a deal he couldn’t refuse and thus Ramgarh Cottage was born. After enjoying the place for many years when the drain of managing the place while running up and down from Delhi became too much, V Resorts stepped in and took the place in its fold. Well, that was probably the last time Tiger was spotted in the area but the peace, tranquillity and the magnificent charm of tall and very green hills all around, the dim lights from the valley (Tallla Ramgarh) are eternal. The proximity to Nainital notwithstanding, what’s a holiday without mind taking a rest from mind games at work.