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“Six months later, still in our hearts”
Review of Kaivalyam Retreat

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Kaivalyam Retreat
Ranked #1 of 190 Munnar B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Paris, France
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Six months later, still in our hearts”
Reviewed January 20, 2014

We spent a whole month in Kaivalyam, in the thick of the monsoon season, practising yoga, meditating, trying to become part of the place. Six months has taken us to write a review, but maybe this has an added value. During this time we've often reflected on what Kaivalyam and its people offered us and believe it is an excellent retreat.
In a month we tried several rooms. The tree house still remains our favourite. Although we had decided that we were there for the yoga, we went for walks in the tea gardens, visited the waterfalls, went shopping to Munnar, etc. All of it was interesting. But Kaivalyam was home. Harish spent hours and hours with us, teaching and accompanying us. The rest of the staff was also very helpful. We could write a long review talking about many of them. But other travellers have pointed out all of this.
Maybe our contribution could be to talk about the Monsoon season yoga package. We had experienced a very rainy winter and spring in Europe. In Kerala it rained almost every day, sometimes very heavily. It was one of the strongest monsoons in the last years. Still, we enjoyed Kaivalyam thoroughly. Whereas in other parts of the area there were problems with water, the only one we had was the absence of internet connection for the most part of our stay.
We and two friends of ours were the only ones on the yoga package. Some days people on shorter stays would join us for morning yoga sessions. We strongly recommend the package. Kaivalyam may not be an ashram, if that is what you are looking for, but in many ways it is much more than that and Harish himself is passionate about yoga.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
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1 Thank Miguel d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Zurich, Switzerland
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviewed January 17, 2014

We stayed at the Kaivalyam Retreat for two nights and it was a delightful experience. Not only are the facilities in very good conditions, the staff is extraordinarily friendly and helpful, but the included morning yoga session really lets you experience India in a very special way. Although it might seem odd to order the food in advance, the dishes are exquisite and different a breakfast curry is served every day.

Special thanks go to the yoga teacher, who also runs the place - we had a great time!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank ChrisMat6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hyderabad, India
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed January 17, 2014

Very happy that we chose Kaivalyam.

Thankfully we talked to Harish (the owner) beforehand and got some good advice. As a result, we did not plan too many things during the trip - and had a good balance of relaxation, activities and tourism.

Location also worked well - Kaivalyam is midway between 2nd mile (Palivasal) and Munnar town.

More on the retreat- Its about 4 years young. Clean and well designed. There are 10 regular rooms and 2 "tree-house" rooms. Landscaping is good and the spice walk was very informative (we went on the 1 hour walk). Wish we had gone on the longer walks to the river (2 hours) and the waterfall (4-6 hours).

My wife also enjoyed the yoga sessions offered early morning.
If you stay at the retreat, plan on having dinner there. We found the food at the retreat delicious - crisp and fresh; not too hot or salty. We also did not want to take the risk of coming back very late - as the path to the retreat is a steep slope (though the 4X4 vehicles with skilled drivers from the retreat come and drop you at the main road on top and even send drivers to fetch your vehicle down / up).

Harish and his crew (Reni, Rajendran et al.) are very helpful and courteous. We had to depart the last day early (prior to breakfast being served). The staff packed some sandwiches and fruits for us.

Highly recommend Kaivalyam

Room Tip: Rooms are spacious to accomodate 2 adults + 2 kids. Recommend you talk to Harish the owner before bo...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Thank VVGBS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bengaluru, India
2 reviews
Reviewed January 15, 2014

Stayed here for 2 days with sight seeing package.

Rooms : Clean, Spacious, Overlooking beautiful landscape.

People and Service : Harish the owner is really helpful, accommodating. Driver who picks up and drops to main road is highly skilled driver( the road is challenging for not so proficient driver ). Even the driver for cab arranged for our sightseeing was very good. Nothing to complain about service. Only suggestion would be to have bigger sized TV in rooms but in this place even couch potato like me would not be bothered about TV when there are so many things to be explored.

Nearby attractions : Punarjani was good. Pickup and drop will be provided. kalaripayattu was good but Kathakali I thought was not up to mark as stage was not big enough.

Yoga session : You should never miss on complimentary yoga session in morning given by Harish himself. The way Harish teaches yoga, you will start liking doing yoga. My resolution for this year is to continue with yoga even after coming back from here :-)

Food : Only Veg food is served here. This is highlight of this place. I have traveled around the world and the food I had here, I'll rate it amongst the best I had.

Will visit again for Yoga program and would recommend highly to people I know.

Room Tip: All rooms are good.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank CuriousTraveller2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed January 12, 2014

We originally wanted to stay in Munnar iteslf, but having visited Munnar town- ugly, noisy, not much of interest- we were so happy to have stayed at the Kaivalyam Retreat. It's beautiful and peaceful, the rooms are amazing, the beds very comfortable, and the food is wonderful. The staff are all very friendly and helpful. This was the place we splashed out on (although it is cheap by European standards) and it was worth every penny. Highly recommended.
The downstairs rooms have the best view.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank DaisyDaisy101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brighton, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed January 11, 2014

We had a wonderful few days at Kaivalayam Retreat - beautiful, peaceful location, with lovely rooms and delicious food. I would highly recommend staying here. We took a package which included a sight seeing tour around Munnar and guided walks around the spice plantation - there is a complimentary yoga session in the morning which is great too if you can get up early enough.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank 773nikkij
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 9, 2014

This place is amazing. From the welcome drink and hot towel to wipe off the bus grime on arrival to the incredible setting and the immaculate, enormous room with terrace. The vegetarian food was faultless (we are usually keen meat eaters) and breakfast was epic. The owner and staff were very welcoming and helpful, even helping us to work out which bus to catch on our onward journey and dropping us off at the stop.

There's yoga almost every morning in the open air yoga hall in amongst the gardens and daily spice walks around the cardamom plantation, which was enlightening for someone who uses spices regularly in the UK but has little idea of how they are grown. We went on the tea walk and got massively lost - make sure you turn back at the bridge over the waterfalls and do not carry on! The location is quite far from Munnar Town, which is part of its charm, but do make sure you carry the phone number for the Retreat, especially on arrival, as rickshaw drivers from Munnar aren't familiar with the location.

All in all, one of the best places we've stayed and well worth the money.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Wandering_Spam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kaivalyam Retreat

Property: Kaivalyam Retreat
Address: Opposite Workers Recreation Center | Moolakada, Pallivasal Estate, Munnar 685612, India
Phone Number:
Location: India > Kerala > Idukki District > Munnar
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 190 B&Bs / Inns in Munnar
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Kaivalyam Retreat 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set amidst a calm and scenic surroundings, the retreat provides a destination for visitors to indulge in learning experience of holistic lifestyle with traditional Yoga and organic way of living and dining. The place is a fusion of rustic external with smooth internal space creating luxurious facilities and natural environment to enjoy and pamper. ... more   less 
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