We stayed for 3 nights (4 days) for a birdwatching camp and we were absolutely thrilled with our entire experience with the place. We will be going back without any hesitation.
I made contact with Natures Nest before leaving for Goa and agreed to book the birdwatching camp. There were a number of emails between us. They responded quickly and took time to answer my specific questions. There was a problem with me trying to make payment from the UK and I was very concerned that our place might not be reserved but they were most accommodating with the situation and kept our reservation for us until I was able to make alternative arrangments. We used our own taxi driver to get there and back again, he was able to call them and get directions, it is quite remote (which is one of the benefits of this place) but nothing was too much trouble for the team there. They do offer their own taxi service for pick up which I am confident would be very good based upon our experience with trips out while we were there.
Upon arrival we were greeted by Ramesh Zarmekar, he was to be our bird guide for the duration of our stay. He is an extremely knowledgeable guide and he will go out of his way to seek out the various species of birds for folks to see. He can identify birds by their call and a glimpse of something is quickly identified and pointed out. He is also an expert on amphibians too but it was the wrong season for us to see them. Ramesh goes out of his way to please, he is very attentive and wants to ensure his clients are safe and comfortable at all times.
The cottages are lovely, basic but clean and well maintained. The beds are quite comfortable too. They are tucked away from the restaurant area around the perimeter of the site among the trees. The only sound you will hear is birdsong. It is so tranquil there. After dark you need a torch to pick your way along the stony path to your cottage but they would bring one to our table after dinner as soon as they were aware we were about to move away. Just bring it back next morning to be recharged!
The food is incredible. There were just us two on the birding camp while we were there and we were brought a huge variety of beautifully cooked dishes, there was far too much for us to eat and yet it was all so tasty I really wanted to do it justice. We were offered a huge lunch which helped us have a siesta in the afternoon ready for our late afternoon birding trip. There is a good selection of drinks on offer but when my husband asked if they had Honeybee Brandy they sent someone to the local liquor store to buy it for him - I think if you need anything you only have to ask.
There is no internet conection or mobile phone signal at the place, which was part of the attraction! Instead of sitting glued to phone everyone was enjoying the beautiful grounds at the place, with beautiful birds coming right onto the lawn for you to see.
There is a wonderful spring at the bottom of the hill, there is a pool you can dabble your feet it with fresh water bubbling up from the rocks. It is full of tiny fish which give you a pedicure. If you make a noise (like a clap of the hands) it causes bubbles to be released in the pool. It is so quiet there with only the sound of birds in the trees. The spring also feeds an amazing pool you can swim in. This is a man made rectangular pool and it is perfect paradise, warm water to swim in with the tiny fish swimming with you can sit on the steps or on the wall at the side and just relax. It is amazing.
There is a climbing wall and a zip wire there too, we did not use them but a group of ladies were there for the day while we were there and they were having a great time using the equipment. It highlighted to me that this place is so accommodating that if you want to visit for a few hours, a day or overnight you just need to contact them and explain what it is you need and they will bend over backwards to produce a package to suit you at a price that is excellent value for money.
The 4 day bird camp is intensive but very well worth the effort. with two birding sessions a day (starting very early in the morning) it felt a bit like "Birding, Eat, Sleep, Repeat" but we saw 164 species of birds during our trip and there are so many lifers among them I have not had a chance to total them up yet. Each day started very early with a cuppa and a "rusk" (French Toast) in the restaurant. Then we were in the car being driven the very short trip to one of the local nature reserves where Manesh would use his skill and local knowledge to show us some incredible birds including some rare ones (We saw all 8 varieties of kingfisher that are endemic to the area during our trip) Back for a wonderful lunch we would retire to our cottage for a rest but by 4pm we were out again to see the next choice of birds. Ramesh has a field scope that he will set up for you to view some of the birds, we had taken binoculars with us and I would advise anyone wanting to do this trip does the same but you will still get a good view of many birds through Ramesh's scope. The evening is spent eating dinner and updating our list of what we had spotted during the day. Enagaging in conversation about the wildlife in the region with Manesh is educational, he is a very knowledgeable man and it is his pleasure to impart his knowledge to others if they are interested. We were always in bed early and slept soundly. One day of the trip you travel out to Carambolim Lake and take a boat on The Zuaire River. Both places are superb for birding. It is quite a long drive that day. I would suggest it is very well worth doing as both places offer some superb birding and you have an air conditioned car for the trip so it is an interesting drive. Personally while I will visit both places again I would organise this seperately from the camp as they are both much closer to the Candolim/ Calangute "tourist strip" than they are to Nature's Nest. Manesh assured me that in future I could simply contact him at Natures Nest and arrange either the Zuaire Trip or the local guide at Carambolim (Omtar) with him and he would either arrange transport from our hotel or we could use our own transport to get there.
I really cannot speak highly enough of this place, our stay there was an absolute highlight of the 3 weeks we spent in Goa and we loved it so much we will be back for more next year. The entire team are fantastic and this place is paradise!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nature's Nest is an eco resort located on the border of Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary. The resort is located close to Dudhsagar waterfall and the 13th century temple at Tambdi Surla.The cottages are Goan village house type with ethnic construction style. They have attached bath with hot water facility.Located in an organic farm, Nature's Nest is a perfect place to experience Goa's hinterland beauty. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with MakeMyTrip, Booking.com, Agoda and TravelGuru so you can book your Nature's Nest reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.