"Glory lies in the attempt to reach one's goal and not in reaching it " ~ Mahatma Gandhi


Bob's Place, Kumaon

Romola Butalia checks out Bob's Place at Nathuakhan in the Kumaon Himalayas and writes, 'I am glad I stopped this way.'

Bob's Place, Nathuakhan I had heard of the place before, in passing mention, by different people. "Where did you stay?"

"Bob's place."

"Where is that?"


"Ah! Oh! Of course. You mean Nathuakhan between Malla Ramgarh and Sitla on the Haldwani-Bhimtal-Mukteshwar road?"

More on Uttarakhand

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Emerald Trail
Himalayan Village

Pindari Galcier
Mountain Biking

Pilgrim Trails
Paharpani Gufa

Bob's Place, Nathuakhan

Finally, one day I was asked by Shilpa, "have you heard of Bob's place?" Yes, I said, tentatively, because I had heard of it, but never been given the low down about it. Never checked it out, myself, either. Usually, whenever someone asks me this question, they expect that I am a walking, talking reference book on places worth vacationing at. Well, Shilpa knew all about it already. She said, "I would love to do a yoga program there. Would you be willing to conduct it?"

Shilpa Sharma along with her business partners, had recently started an outfit called, Breakaway Journeys. What was quite unique about the way she was going about it was not simply the energy and passion which she brought into it, which all successful entrepreneurs have, but that her networking was genuine - all her friends were happy to give their inputs.

Bob's Place, NathuakhanRather than give Shilpa excuses for why I could not conduct a yoga program, it was easier to admit that I had no idea about Bob's place, even if it seemed that everyone I knew was familiar with it. I promised her I would check it out. Shilpa finally gave up on the yoga program. But suddenly, while I was sitting in Kumaon, 15 kms away from Bob's place, Shilpa called to say she had organised a special Fine Wine and Fabulous Food Breakaway at Bob's place from 23rd Sept 2011. Would I join? I said I was leaving Kumaon on 22nd. But I decided to ring up Bob and visit his place.

It was a Saturday morning. 8:30 is too early to ring up someone you do not know, in Delhi. A sleepy voice answered. Bob said they were opening for the season on 23rd, but okay, I could go across in a few hours, and they would be ready to receive me. I told Bob I had heard a lot about his place. He said, "Well, I hope you don't find it over-rated."

I arrived, and very soon I thought to myself, I cannot be so enamoured by so many places. I told myself, perhaps it was a reaction to having spent the previous night at a KMVN Guest House. Perhaps it was because I am so unabashedly partial to Kumaon. Perhaps it was because we were the only guests. Who knows? Are there are any explanations for why you feel totally contented and happy, and wish that today could last very, very long?

Bob's Place, NathuakhanI have never calculated pros and cons, never had a quality check list I keep ticking off. We don't do it about our friends, why should we do it about vacation destinations that are the equivalent of friends?

You wake up to views of the Himalayan peaks from your bed, before you have had time to rub your eyes. The temperature is kinder than many other mountain destinations of scenic splendour. There is absolutely nothing else around to distract you. The cottages are done aesthetically, tastefully, as one would do one's own home, so they are not replicas of each other. Everything is designed for easy homely comfort. Meals are freshly-made home-cooked food. The service is warm and hospitable. The pictures in the room, the little artefacts, clearly say this is not a resort, not a boutique hotel, not a niche destination being over-promoted - it is simply, Bob's place. And I am glad I stopped this way, Bob.


Another day you can ask me why.

For more about Breakaway Journeys, contact:
mobile: +91 98188 45999
website: Breakaway Journeys
Breakaway On Facebook
e-mail: asawari@break-away.in

For further details and trip planning for Bob's Place, contact:
Bob's Place
Village Nathuakhan
Dist Nainital, Uttarakhand
Ph: 05942 285510
mobile: (+91) 9811034861
website: Bob's Place
e-mail: bobanand@gmail.com

Photo Credit: Rajiv Butalia

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Editor: Romola Butalia       (c) India Travelogue. All rights reserved.