Jawai Leopard Camp
Remote and rural, Jawai Leopard Camp is one of India’s most original properties offering access to astounding wildlife encounters. This overlooked pocket of Rajasthan is home to flamingos, antelope, crocodile, monkey, wild boar and over 100 bird species. Of course, the main attraction are the mysterious wild leopards—nearly fifty of them—who lurk in the craggy hills around the village. Nowhere else in the world do leopards and humans live so closely together and in such harmony. During your stay you will wake before dawn to watch leopard families lounging on the kopjes surrounding the white-washed temples. The villagers believe the leopards came to protect the hilltop temples around which they are regularly spotted. The cats will slink away into the caves as the sun rises, but will be back at dusk for another sighting. While the leopards sleep through the heat of the day, the village comes to life.
During the mornings and afternoons guests are introduced to a lifestyle that draws on centuries-old traditions that are sadly quickly disappearing across India. You can walk with the Rabari herdsmen as they lead their goats through the fields, speaking about their way of life and customs; spend time in the organic kitchen garden learning about how Jawai Leopard Camp is dedicated to sustainable practices; or take a half-day trip to the 15th-century Fort of Kumbalgarh, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If a lazy day is calling your name, then head to the spa, lounge by the pool, or just spend some time unwinding in your beautiful tent. The ten spacious canvas tents are outfitted in contemporary designs with stainless steel and leather accents, a black and white color scheme, blown-up photographs of the local leopards, slate or jute floors, and generous private observation decks. The design-factor is big, but the environment is intimate, peaceful, and never feels overdone. An easy drive from Jodhpur or Udaipur, this sleek, one-of-a-kind camp with a kind and sincere staff is worth the journey and should be added to any Rajasthan trip.