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“Excellent Camp”
Review of Old Magazine House

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Old Magazine House
Certificate of Excellence
Hyderabad
Level 6 Contributor
110 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“Excellent Camp”
Reviewed January 24, 2014

This is by far the best camping place in Dandeli. There is a serene atmosphere, you get to hear different sounds of the birds in the morning and the food is pretty good too. The staff are pretty helpful and would definitely come back here.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Avinash R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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135 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (54)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Bengaluru, India
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed January 13, 2014

basic facilities, well the most important is met!! the little bird studios.
met a lot of like minded people.
its the best place in Karnataka for bird lovers, if u are not one, this place might seem pointless!!
good food.

Room Tip: all the rooms are more or less the same, if u are in a big group the dormitory is a very good optio...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank k k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
34 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2014

We did not get to stay at the Old Magazine House when we visited Ganeshgudi in December 2013 as they were sold out. However, we did head there one evening and we had a treat!. They charge you Rs 250 for your camera, but their birdbath is one of the best places to shoot birds. The birds troop down in the evening starting around 4.30 and for the next hour it was an absolute riot with a parade of birds. Definitely looking to go back and stay there.

If you are interested in birdwatching, the place to be in Ganeshgudi. (Also checkout the Govt timber mill for birdwatching)

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Location
Helpful?
1 Thank Aswin P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bharuch, India
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
Reviewed December 4, 2013

We visited this place in oct and stayed for 3 days . its a fanastic place right in middle of a jungle According to the staff as the monsoon was extended this year the number of birds were less but still we spotted 35 or so new bird species on our list .It was truly very exicting. The food was tasty and the cottages were also good.Let me tell you this place is only for those who are into birding or those jungle types.There is no other activity other than the coracle ride and nature walk.Inshort if you are a bird lover you have to visit this place.Infact Iam already contemplating a second visit in the summer.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank swatisc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bengaluru, India
Level 5 Contributor
86 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed October 18, 2013

JLR never disappoints. Old magazine house is similar. This was my first visit to the place and came rejuvenated. Food as usual was good. Cottages are old fashioned made of bamboo and looks ingrained with nature. Its in the midst of the forest. We spotted large number of birds, flying squirrel, snakes and a jackal. Pied hornbills are just a few kms away near the bridge close to Supa dam. It is said that Supa dam is the second highest dam in India. Boat ride and nature walk was good.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank rpradyumna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed September 19, 2013

Stayed at Old Magazine House (OMH) as part of a longer road trip covering the Karwar region in October 12. The place was a revelation. Located deep in the Dandeli jungles, close to Supa dam, the place is a veritable treasure trove.
A quick warning: this place is strictly for those who enjoy being in the lap of nature sans comforts and luxuries that we take for granted: limited electricity, no mobile coverage, no TV, no ambience. But then, who cares for phone calls when the place is full of bird calls? Who cares for TV when National Geographic is playing all around! Can there be better ambience than being in the midst of a dense jungle?
The accomodation is limited - only 5 cottages that are quite basic. Though basic, they are well maintained, neat and tidy. All meals, tea and snacks is included in the package: the food is basic and rustic, but wholesome and healthy. Don't come here looking for gourmet fare.
The staff is very courteous and helpful. For example, we were driving onward to Karwar and were not sure about the road condition (had read some horror stories) and since it was 100 km through dense jungle, we wanted to be sure. We asked the staff and they went to great lengths, checking with truck and bus drivers known to them etc., on routes and route options.
The staff is very knowledgeable about the birds. We went on three birding treks, early in the morning and at dusk and must have spotted more than 40 different species of birds (and this was not even the birding season!). The staff who carry their own binoculars (not provided by the management), are kind enough to lend you theirs.
The forest trek (the view from the top of the mountain is stupendous), coracle ride (must, to spot the Malabar pied hornbill) are part of the package.
Overall, a fantastic place and strongly recommended, but only if you want to visit the place for what it offers: abundant nature, lots of birds and courteous staff. For anything else, there are hundreds of star properties to choose from.

Room Tip: December - January is the best time to visit, since this is the peak of the birding season.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank RamSharaph
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangalore, India
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed May 12, 2013

The Old Magazine House was originally built as a storehouse for ammo used in the construction of the Supa Dam project that came up in the 60's. Local folklore also puts its origins to a hunting lodge in the days of the Raj.

Located bang in the midst of a verdant clearing in a forest, you cant beat the location! The sound of cicada's and various birds from the forest will be a companion throughout your stay here. But thats where the positives end!

There are 2 types of acco avail: the dorms located in the main building at the extreme north end of the property, which also houses the kitchen, office, reception and dining area. The more popular form of accomodation are the cottages: 5 in number. These were at one time (circa 2004/5) compact but nice bamboo structures which went well with the overall jungle theme of the place. Today these have been replaced with concrete cottages which are a poor substitute: especially if you have stayed in the older cottages.

Being a JLR property now, food is included in the package: and there is plenty of it. Morning tea at 7, Breakfast at 930, Lunch at 1 pm, tea at 5 and dinner at 9. The food is strictly average.

Unlike other JLR properties, there are no safari's in the package and no activities included in the price: which raises serious questions on the value of the offering. The coracle ride and the "rafting" are offered for Rs.1400. Another resident who opted for rafting was taken out for what was a glorified boat ride, which I opted out of.

The staff are reasonably competent and can be helpful when they want to. Some of them are extremely knowledgeable about the birds. But if you have the bad luck of having a rich name dropping nawab turn up with his entourage, the JLR programme can be modified to your disadvantage! JLR needs to have better staff orientation IMO.

Finally: OMH is being promoted as a "birding paradise": i would question that branding. While there are definitely plenty of birds in season, the birding activity is restricted to the "stage" set up in front of the main building where the management has put up bird baths and water trays for the birds. Check up on any birding forums and you will see the same set of birds at the same bird baths! So if you are the kind of bird photographer who likes to sit back in a chair and have the birds come to you while you sip your chai, then perhaps OMH is tailor made for you! OTOH if you like to move around and photograph birds in a more natural setting, this is definitely NOT the place to be.

To sum up: OMH is a victim of confused branding: there is absolutely no justification for the JLR type pricing given the programme on offer. Neighbouring resorts (like the Hornbill resort for example) provide a more well rounded experience for much less. When I was staying at the OMH last week, i went across to the Hornbill Resort nearby for shooting birds!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
4 Thank roysankar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Old Magazine House

Property: Old Magazine House
Address: Near Supa Dam | Uttara Kannada Dist., Ganeshgudi 581325, India
Location: India > Karnataka > Uttar Kannada District > Ganeshgudi
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Ganeshgudi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A place to just be. Catch your breath. Learn more about nature and get away from the mad rush. The Old magazine brings to mind rustic, old-world, classic roughing it. And it's exactly that. The camp is surrounded by thick forest and you can be sure of spotting the jungle's rare and vibrant avian denizens. The Old Magazine House is less about what you can see and more about what you can do. And there's a lot of the latte ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Old Magazine House Ganeshgudi, India - Karnataka

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