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“Convenience at a very heavy price” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Aranya Nivas KTDC

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Aranya Nivas KTDC
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Kumily, Thekkady 685536, India   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #12 of 30 hotels in Thekkady
Portland, OR
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Convenience at a very heavy price”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2009

Know the facts before booking a room here:
1
. The hotel is run by the tourism department, but is located in a forest run by the forest department. So, every day that you need to leave the hotel to do a forest trip, you need to buy a ticket to enter the forest. We had to buy a ticket to get in the forest at 5pm the day we arrived, and another ticket the next day to do the tour. We felt very ripped-off.
2. A ticket is only valid until 6pm. So after 6pm, you are a prisoner in the hotel premises. We left to walk around and a forest official very sternly told us to go back.
3. For that reason, you have to have dinner in the hotel. It is very expensive (buffet; Rs 400 per head) and not worth it.
4. The rooms have no a/c and you are not allowed to open the windows as monkeys may come in and destroy your stuff. It can get freaking hot if you go in the summer, like we did.
5. The room itself is old and worn, and the beds are really hard. A double bed is just two singles next to each other - not comfortable sleeping.
6. It is convenient to wake up and just walk to the info center to take the bamboo rafting tour etc. but staying outside would be more convenient and cheap for every other situation. If I had known these facts I would have never stayed here.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (68)
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English first
India
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2009

As soon as you enter the periya forest reserve you are greeted by signs that say 'take care, wild animals may cross your path.' 'Maintain silence' 'Do not disturb the flora and fauna'. These signs pumps up the excitement level of staying in such a beautiful forest reserve.
Aranya Nivas is a KTDC resort and is maintained very well. Rooms and the hotel overall is very clean. As soon as we entered the hotel room we were greeted with monkeys perched on the branches on the trees outside the windows. So please do not open the windows in this place or else you would have to entertain the monkeys who were in plenty outside the hotel.
The tariff is very reasonable and is inclusive of all meals. The meals were not a lavish spread of exotic dishes but the quality and quantity of the dishes provided was far superior and adequate. Clear instructions of maintaining low volume and less noise is everywhere.
Activities such as boat safaris is arranged by the KTDC on the Periyar river. We saw herds of elephants, bisons, deers and for the first time I saw an orange fox.
Excellent holiday option.

  • Stayed November 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Derby
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2009

You pay for the privilege of staying in the Periyar Nature Reserve. A Government run hotel. Rooms and corridors a little more tired since our last visit five years ago. The 'bar' is a little eccentric and pricey (Rs200 a beer) However the buffet food was good. A slightly odd arrangement for phone calls - a little booth, outside the main building. The main advantage is the closeness to the lake. Ferry trips are not now included in the price (as advertised in guide books and was included five years ago), but they do have their own boat which is quiter than the other ones so better to see the wildlife. You do need to pay Forest Park fees for each day you are in, so make best use of your time. You need to be within the hotel compound by 6pm... no evening trips to Kumily! The real beauty of it is the peace and quiet after 6pm when all tourists have gone - can't put a price on that!!

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2009

I wouldn't recommend this hotel to future travellers. We had a room bigger than our flat in London, which was unecessary and the hotel was tired and stuck in the past. it was was all you'd expect from a government run hotel. Didn't like the fact that the gates were closed at night so you were forced to eat at the hotel, particularly as the food was bad and expensive for what it was. We went to a few hotels outside the sanctuary and they seemed a lot better quality and were a lot cheaper.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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gva
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2009

We really enjoyed our stay; i was suspicious after reading all the previous reviews but I'm really glad we went. We stayed in a deluxe room and it was very spacious.
We went for two early morning hikes, an elephant ride and a plantation visit in the three days we were there, these were all organized by the KTDC. The food was varied and fresh and the staff in the restaurant were helpful and friendly. The hotel furniture was slightly frayed but the whole thing made for a truly authentic colonial experience. We would go back.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Faro, Portugal
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2008

This was really awful. First obliged to pay 800 rupees to enter the park to get to the hotel, then 300 rupees to go on the "free" boat trip is just a plain swizz. As soon as we got there they told us we mustn't open the windows, this in a south facing room with no air conditioning! No bottled water, and another 800 rupees if you want to go out to the shop. No kettle, a coffee percolator and a cheap brand of intant coffee. I'm not sure if percolators boil water so no hot drinks either. Gloomy, crowded and no service to be seen. We had just come from Tea County in Munnar, part of the same chain and for the same price we had real luxury and attentive service. Didn't see any wildlife and Waterscapes in the same chain in another league for informed, sensitive birdwatching

  • Liked — leaving the next morning
  • Disliked — not able to open the windows in a gloomy setting
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2008

The alarm bells rang when I sat down at the reception desk and rather than the normal friendly Indian welcome, I was told how much my over priced but clean room would be. We had a reasonable lunch and took a trip on the lake where we did see plenty of wildlife including elephants. We enquired about booking a trek in the park but were informed that these were all booked up inadvance which meant that for our next day we had nothing to do, so after one night we left. Periyar has some amazing wildlife, forget tigers but the giant squirrels and birds are worth the long trip. Best advice is book accomodation outside the park.

  • Stayed December 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Aranya Nivas KTDC

Address: Kumily, Thekkady 685536, India
Location: India > Kerala > Thekkady
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 30 hotels in Thekkady
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Aranya Nivas KTDC 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Aranya Nivas is the only premium jungle lodge of its kind situated inside the Periyar Tiger Reserve(Thekkady). The resort provides avenue for close interaction with the tropical rain forest and wild life. The resort is located on the banks of Periyar lake. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aranya Nivas Ktdc Hotel Thekkady
Aranya Nivas Idukki
Aranya Nivas Hotel Idukki
Aranya Nivas KTDC Thekkady, Kerala

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