With its open rooftop machans and wooden decks that overlook the shady nullah (dry riverbed), Baghvan Pench Jungle Lodge constantly immerses guests in the sights and sounds of the Indian jungle. Eclectic details like 1950s fridges, vintage toy trucks and carved wooden horses add a quirky touch to this colourful lodge.
Tucked into dense forest, 12 bungalow suites enjoy the dappled shade of massive teak and banyan trees at Baghvan Pench Jungle Lodge. Lining a dry river bed, spacious decks look out on dainty deer picking their way through the undergrowth. Timber walls blend into the wooded shadows of the jungle, while each suite boasts a rooftop machan, with its romantic sleep-out option, mosquito nets and hookah pipes. A covered passage takes guests from their bedroom to a generously proportioned bathroom with indoor and outdoor showers.
Delicate handmade Parsi tiles celebrate vintage India in spacious guest areas. Deep sofas are scattered among woven hyacinth furniture and giant ebony chests. Mouth watering aromas drift from an interactive kitchen entice and challenge with colourful spices and recipes as chefs prepare traditional Indian dishes.
A spectacular natural reserve set among typical Central Indian teak jungle, Pench offers a quiet and secluded game viewing experience. Taking its name from the meandering Pench River which intersects the park, the reserve sprawls over a breathtaking landscape of hills, forests and valleys. Coupled with the feeling of having the entire forest to yourself, the gentle, undulating scenery of the Satpura Hills creates an unforgettable jungle experience.
Apart from the rarely seen tiger and leopard, Pench is home to exceptional numbers of deer, ranging from chital to sambar and nilgai. Wild dog, wolf, jungle cat, hyena and jackal make up the remainder of the reserve’s predators. Gaur and muntjac, as well as great numbers of langur monkeys and rhesus macaques are also frequently spotted. Apart from its wildlife, Pench is a birdwatcher’s paradise, boasting almost 250 species, including parakeets, hornbills, kingfishers, barbets, minivets, orioles and wagtails, as well as a large selection of raptors, from the crested serpent eagle to the white-eyed buzzard. The Pench River and the many streams and nullahs are home to a large variety of water birds, as well as crocodiles and freshwater turtles.
Weather & climate
India enjoys a tropical climate and days are frequently hot. In summer (from April to June) temperatures can get as high as 44°C, while early morning and evenings are a pleasant 18 to 24°C. In winter (from October to March) night time temperatures can drop to between 2 and 20°C, while days are sunny and pleasant. The monsoon season is from mid-June to September and heavy rainfall is experienced during this time.
The Indian currency is the rupee, which consists of 100 paise. Major currencies such as US dollars, British pounds and Euros are easy to exchange throughout India.
The most commonly used cards are Visa and Mastercard, but neither American Express nor Diner’s Club are widely accepted in India. Outside the main cities, it is recommended that travellers carry enough Indian currency for purchases and tips. ATMs linked to international networks are situated in most big cities. Indian ATMs will only work with a four-digit PIN code.
Visas and documents
South African passport holders require a visa to travel to India. Visas are issued free of charge, but must be applied for in South Africa before travel. Visa applications are normally processed within two to three days.