Visited: June 2021. Stayed for 1 day.
Locked up at home for many months had got our toes itching for open spaces. Even though most days started with morning walks, we were longing for an outing with Jiraiya where he could be let off the leash and could run around freely. We had passed Manas resort multiple times on our trips to Nashik, and had seen the spacious pet friendly resort from the highway. It was an easy and quick decision to book a weekend stay here.
Check location here.
Manas resort has two sections. One is with the petting zoo, pets are more than welcome here. The other adjacent to it is the ‘luxury resort’, (not sure if pets are allowed there). Although the petting zoo one does not have the term ‘luxury’ in it, we did not miss it. The room (we stayed in Delux suite) was very well kept and had very comfortable furniture. Rooms had all amenities like tea/coffee station, a well kept private garden and seating, good sized bathroom with hot-water tub, televisions and air conditioners (no mini fridge, cool booze can be bought in-house on overpriced rates).
The amenities were limited and less staff was present to attend to the guests due to COVID restrictions, yet we had loads of fun. Seeing Jiraiya run in the resort’s vast, empty, well kept lawns was very satisfying to our pet parent soul.
The views of the lush green Sahyadri hills and valleys from the back of the resort is magnificent and a big blessing for the eyes. All through out the day we could see trains going towards and away from Igatpuri station. The resort grounds are well maintained, with green lawns and kids playground.
They used to have buffet system in pre-pandemic times, but during our stay there was no restaurant eating available. In-room service for food and beverage was good, but overpriced. There were no inclusions of any of the meals in the tariff. For us it worked fine, during the day we visited the Soma vine village (pet friendly, we were after all in wine capital of our country) and ate our lunch and breakfast out. We only had dinner in the resort. Food was tasty with good portions and staff was helpful, warm and prompt.
This resort – thanks to it’s animal lover owner, is popular for its petting zoo, which houses many exotic birds, goats, cow and a pack of multi-breed dogs. I am not a supporter of captured wildlife for tourism, but if the animals are kept in good conditions and with proper care and facilities, I understand their necessity. They help humans find an emotional link to the species. Zoos make people aware of the natural beauty of various species, and most automatically become sensitive about them and understand the importance of conserving it. I think it’s a great place to bring smaller kids and get them to be comfortable around animals and birds, helping in making next gen more environment friendly. I have read that they used to house a larger number of species here pre-pandemic, but they were absent during our visit.
Most interesting attraction of the place, along with various animal and bird sections was the in-house vegetable garden patches scattered around the cottages attracting multitude of butterflies, bees and other garden beings. The railing leading to our cottage was covered with flowering Turai (ridge gourd) vines with some young vegetables hanging from it. Our cottage backyard had patches of Brinjal, Okra and some other green leafy veg plants. All flowering and looking beautiful. It was funny spotting some random vegetable growing here or there like a lonely Cabbage growing all alone right next to the aviary under a group of Papaya trees. This planed chaos of vegetable gardening added to the fun of the place.
For us, main attraction was the resort being pet friendly. Off-course your pet needs to watch the in-house wildlife from a distance. The petting zoo has time slots (updated time-table will be given during check-in). The resort grounds are open to guest pets (except when resort dog pack is out for playtime for 1-2 hours) where they can play freely provided there is no complaint from other guests. We were lucky as there were not many guests and Jiraiya had open spaces to himself for hours. His excitement of seeing such large grounds for sniffing and running for the first time in his life was a new experience for us. They also have pet grooming facility which was shut due to staff shortage.
Our trip was short but very satisfying. We would certainly come back again to enjoy the comfort and open free spaces of Manas resort.
Manas resort and petting zoo – Bookings and cost
Manas resort and petting zoo offers variety of room options. Check out Manas resort and Petting zoo website for more property photos, amenities and tariff information.