Capturing the bygone days, Camp Chhatra Sagar is perched on a Dam of a reservoir far removed from India’s bustling cities. It is a rural haven, run by the same family who has looked after the property for more than a hundred years, the camp showcases their love for the region.
Harshvardhan Singh Rathore is a dear friend of ours at Quo Vadis and we had a chat with him about some interesting facts about Chhatra Sagar and the land around.
How do you capture the essence of rural Rajasthan at Chhatra Sagar?
Chhatra Sagar is a result of a Century old rainwater harvesting project and till date, it continues to charge the wells of the farmers settled around. All the staff at Chhatra Sagar is from these settlements. The guests on their visit to the farms and the village are welcomed by the family of the team who is looking after them at the camp, this creates a special bonding between the tourist and the farmers and shepherds. They get to understand the rural life in the most authentic manner. All meals served are based on the recipes from the area.
Do you employ locals at the property? Any story that you would like to tell us about how involved the camp is with the local community?
Yes, all the staff is local. There are many stories. Once, while teaching how to set the dinner table, I was asked by one of the staff that why do the guests use so many tools to have their meals?
All the staff is from the local community. We motivate them for higher education. To provide Hygiene awareness and the correct way to dispose waste is the major area we work towards.
Is there a chance to catch some wildlife sights around Chhatra Sagar?
Yes, we have a checklist of 260 species of birds. There are antelopes and wild bores which can be seen from the tent veranda.
We all love the food at the camp, are the recipes traditional and passed on from generations? Could you please tell us about the ingredients being used and what makes it so great? Any favourites?
Yes, the recipes are traditional. The ingredients are in tune with the warm weather we have. The meals are all prepared on slow flame which is the most important part of Indian cooking. The recipes don’t have fix measures and the taste depends a lot on the mood of the cook and hence, it is very important to keep them happy. One of the favourites is Aubergine prepared in Tamarind paste and Jaggery and the pudding made of Lotus seed and rose petals.
How many nights would you recommend at the camp? What are the activities one can indulge in?
Two nights are recommended, and the activities included are: Farm and Village visit, Bird watching tour and sundowners.