80 kms from Shimla on the old Hindustan-Tibet road lays Thanedar, which enjoys a special place in Himachal history. In 1916 Samuel Stokes, a social worker from Philadelphia brought the first apple saplings to Thanedar (a couple of kms from Thanedar), the place he adopted as his home. One can still see the 'Starking Delicious' apple orchard that he planted there. Nestled amongst acres of apple blossoms in this region is the Banjara Orchard Retreat - an eco-friendly getaway that will enchant nature lovers. There are fully furnished rooms, family suites and independent log cabins with attached baths and a well-equipped kitchen to cater to a variety of tastes. Mr. Prakash Thakur, the host, for whom the Orchard Retreat has been a labor of love, is also the resident expert on the history and culture of this little piece of paradise.
Best Time to Visit
The Banjara Orchard Retreat is open throughout the year (unless it snows heavily in Jan/ Feb. Temperatures vary with the seasons). May to September have pleasant days and cold nights while March- April & October- November has pleasant days and night temperature may dip to 2-3 degree centigrade. December- Feb can get very cold with good chance of snow fall early Jan onwards.
5 deluxe rooms, 1 standard room, 2 Family Suites and 2 independent Log Cabins, all are fully furnished with attached bath and hot and cold water supply. All the rooms face the valley except for standard room. Standard room is good for single person or for a couple. It does not offer a valley view. Log huts have an attic/ loft which children (sometimes adults too) enjoy immensely.
|ACCOMMODATION||INR TARIFF(per room per night)||NO. OF UNITS|
| || SGL || DBL || |
|Dlx Rooms||Rs. 4900||Rs. 5900||5|
|Standard Rooms||Rs. 3500||Rs. 4500||1|
|Suite Rooms||Rs. 5600||Rs. 6600||2|
|Log Huts||Rs. 5900||Rs. 6900||2|
HOW TO REACH
From Shimla you take NH 22 via Kufri to Narkanda(64 kms). At Narkanda, you leave NH 22 and get on to the Narkanda-Thanedar-Bithal road.
Thanedhar is 15 kms down the road and the Banjara Orchard Retreat is 1 km short of the Thanedar Bazar. A signboard of the Retreat greets you at the turn off. The same road carries on to meet the Shimla-Sangla highway (NH 22) at Bithal, which is 21 km from the Retreat.
Place to Visit Around
Tani - Jubbar Lake
This is tiny little lake is famous for 'Nag Devta' temple built along the lake. The lake is 6 kms from the retreat.Hattu Peak
15 kms away, at 11,000 ft, this peak offers a panoramic view of the snowline.St.Mary's Church
Built in 1872; this church at Kotgarh is one of the oldest churches in India.Parmjyotir Temple
Built by Stokes in the Pahari style, the temple is 1 km away from the retreat.Saroga Forest
Ideal for a refreshing early morning walkShila Jan Ridge
For a good hiker, a hike to this ridge makes for a fantastic day.Bonfire
We have a bonfire pretty much every day (except when it rains)Bhimakali Temple
Day excursion to this temple in Sarahan (3.5 hrs drive one way)