Mel Jol Echo Lodge – Rural Tourism
Mel Jol Eco Lodge (formerly known as Mukti Ashram) is located at
Manpur-Panarwa, approximately 14km away from Kolyari, 30km from
Jhadol, 80km from Udaipur and 120km from Mount Abu. The lodge is
situated on the bank of the Wakal River and houses a small-scale
rural tourism programme. This programme enables tourists to
experience life in rural Rajasthan, interacting with local people and
the region’s tribal culture. Visitors stay in simple but
comfortable rooms furnished to a good standard. During their time at
the lodge, they have the opportunity to participate in a wide range
of activities, including hikes, bird and wildlife watching, classes
in traditional cooking, music, dancing, and village life, providing
information on agricultural practices, animal husbandry, medicinal
plants, marriage ceremonies and construction of mud houses. MSS has
developed close contacts with many local experts, who are able to
provide a wide variety of cultural programmes and puppet shows.
Visitors will have the opportunity to visit MSS’s various project
sites in the local area, particularly the Mahan STEP Academy, a small
school situated within the lodge’s campus. As such, the lodge is
able to both provide a fantastic tourist experience and to really
help visitors to these communities to understand the local culture
and practices, and the issues that they face.
The lodge contains a total of four double bedrooms, one with a private bathroom and the other three sharing bathroom facilities. Stays can be arranged for both groups and individuals, and both domestic and international tourists. The lodge contains catering facilities and traditional Rajasthani meals will be prepared throughout the visitors stay. All transportation can be organised by MSS, including pickup from Udaipur airport, railway station or bus station.
lodge is also located nearby several other tourism spots, including
Phulwari Ki Nal, a local wildlife sanctuary that includes
leopards, hyena, antelope, flying squirrel and over 120 species of
birds. Just below the lodge is Bhilari Mata Temple, a small Hindu
temple, and around 15km away, outside the village of Tindori, is a
forest of Mahua trees. Finally, the Wakal River provides a perfect
spot to paddle and bathe. Basic amenities are available in nearby
Manpur and Panarwa villages, including a Punjab National Bank,
Primary Healthcare Centre and Police Station.
lodge’s location makes it a great base for exploring Southern
Rajasthan, which includes some of India’s most beautiful and most
popular tourist destinations. The beautiful lake city of Udaipur in
particular is worth a visit. Sitting on the banks of Lake Pichola and
Fateh Sagar, the city is often known as the most romantic city in
India and the ‘Venice of the East’. Some of the city’s biggest
attractions include the City Palace, Lake Palace and Monsoon Palace,
along with temples such as Jagdish Mandir, gardens like
Saheliyon-ki-Bari and memorials such as Moti Magri.
There are many famous temples in the area surrounding Udaipur, including the Hindu temples of Eklingji and Shrinathji, along with the Jain temples of Ranakpur and Rishabhadeoji. Other sites of interest include Jaisamand Lake, Asia’s second-largest artificial lake, and the forts of Kumbhalgarh and Chittorgarh.
Though the rural tourism programme is relatively new, MSS has already hosted several groups and is planning on significantly increasing the scale of the programme in the coming months. More information can be provided by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.