I couldn’t wait to tell you all about my dream stay at the Sapana Village Lodge. it was such a dream, I felt so happy and totally relaxed here!
The Sapana Village Lodge is an accommodation just outside of Sauhara, the town at the border of Chitwan National Park. The town is small but full of hotels and booking offices. Sapana Village Lodge is just outside of town, which brings along a natural calmness. The lodge is adjacent to a small river and a grass area, which gives you amazing views and pure relaxation.
When you arrive in Sauraha, the lodge will pick you up from the bus stop or the airport. Very convenient! Once you arrive you will find a garden full of flowers, cute yellow bungalows and a huge area to relax. They have a restaurant, a coffee-bar, a yoga-house and multiple seating areas. The restaurant serves international and local dishes, all very tasteful and conveniently priced. Everyone working at the Sapana Village lodge is very friendly, relax and helpful. They make sure your stay is a dream and they really care about their guests. You will experience a special treatment. I love their friendliness and they helped me out a lot with arranging my safari tour and my trip back to Kathmandu.
Sapana Village Lodge works hard to switch fully to solar energy to provide electricity and to heat the shower. and implemented responsible alternatives throughout the hotel (such as water cans instead of plastic bottles).
They have two elephants, owned by the hotel. This sounds a bit weird at first, but in Nepal’s Chitwan area most families and homes own an elephant. The two elephants from the lodge are provided with a retirement program. Giving them the freedom and life they deserve without working to ride tourists (an unfortunately very common activity here, still). The two elephants of the lodge have a lot of space, grazing around the lodge, bathing in the river and walking around. These are two Tharu men taking care and responsibility for the elephants as a full-time job to make sure they are in good care (this job is called Mahoet).
“It’s beautiful to see these enormous animals is their natural habitat in the area surrounding the lodge. Breathtaking views.”
A responsible dream stay
The lodge is a social responsible business, which means they invest a lot of their profit back into society. They focus on poverty alleviation and preservation of local heritage and culture. The Sapana Village lodge supports its’ own school: Sapana School. This beautiful school building is just across the street of the lodge and provides 600 children with education according to 21st century standards. Sapana Lodge also supports the Sapana Women Skill Development, a project that aims to teach local women a skill and help them provide for themselves and their families. They make fashion accessories, toys, living accessories and decoration of textiles and new items from recycled materials. With this project, they are able to provide wholesale and are proud supplier of HEMA’s Return to Sender. I truly think this is an amazing achievement. Next to wholesale, they have their own shop in the lodge – which such beautiful products!
As Sauraha area is originally the village of Tharu people, the indigenous tribe of Nepal, Sapana Village lodge works hard to find a way to combine their lifestyle with the guests of the lodge. Sapana Village Lodge initializes different small projects for the community to support themselves. SVSI, an organization created by the owner of Sapana Lodge, supports many small local businesses, helping them with micro-finance. They also offer cooking lessons, crafting or sewing workshops and dance classes for guests to interact with the Tharu tribe. In this way, the lodge support local heritage and preservation. They hired many Tharu people in the lodge to support their development and independence.
Why you should go here
I can truly recommend this place as part of your Nepal trip, it’s one of the best places I’ve stayed ever. The positive energy of the jungle, the dreamy garden, the sunset, the elephants surrounding the lodge, the sound of birds surrounding your room and the best bed to sleep in: it’s with no doubt amazing. Their service is incredible and they really treat you like a special guest.
That being said, the best part of this lodge is their involvement in society and their responsible attitude towards the community. Your money gets spent very well and that’s something so incredibly valuable. It will add a special meaning to your trip and will make your stay even more convenient.
I would recommend this place to stay when you visit Chitwan National Park, but also if you look for a place to find peace and rest. It’s the perfect lodge to stay a bit longer: to find creativity, to write, to meditate, to focus on self-love. The positive vibe will help you achieving your personal goals. The lodge provides massages and free use of their meditation centre.
Hereby another bunch of photo’s to give you an idea of the vibe:
I booked my stay with Booking but you can also book through their website directly or Expedia.
Sapana Village is part of the ‘pack for a purpose’ program which means you can make an impact by traveling with some donations in your suitcase / bag. They list exactly what they would like to receive and how it helps the local projects on their website.
The Sapana Lodge is open for possibilities to volunteer. Have a look here if you are interested.
Tip: In de restaurant, try the panneer masala for lunch or dinner and the vegetable and cheese fried pakoda as an appetizer. THE BEST!