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Banjaar Tola
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Reviews (237)
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All reviewstaj safaristaj groupgame drivestented suitesoverlooking the rivercamp hostafrican safarisurprise dinnertaj propertyhand warmersprivate decknagpur airportsun loungerslodge managersouth africadietary requirementswild pigs
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Reviewed 9 March 2014

We transferred form Mathua Kothi to Banjaar Tola. Our driver, arranged by Taj Safaris, was not a great driver. We much preferred the driver we had from the airport to Mathua Kothi who also drove us from Banjaar Tola to the airport. The van was clean, he was always in control and we always felt safe. On our way from Mathua Kothi, we had two flat tires. One happened before the driver reached us and we fixed the tire after we were picked up. Then we got another flat tire so we had to replace it and patch it. This wasn't a big deal and we had already assumed that if the roads were bad the trip might take a bit longer but our driver could have been so much better. Who eats a bag of chips while driving?

The camp is split into two camps - east and west. I personally enjoyed this because you could walk and run from one camp to the other and to the gate (I wasn't alone) as exercise and it meant that the public areas weren't too crowded.

The staff were friendly and we were welcomed with drinks and towels every time we arrived at camp. We were escorted to our room. We thought our room was fantastic. The balcony was brilliant, the bathroom was fantastic, the bed was so big and comfortable. The room was luxuriously decorated and being over the river is brilliant. I could have stayed in our room all day. It's great that you can have your lunch in our room if you want to. I had a foot massage in the room. It was better than the massage at Mathua Kothi but again, overall the massage wasn't as good as the massages I typically have. This is an area of needs improvement.

I have to say that the food is good but not as good as Mathua Kothi and our butler was also not of the same quality. We appreciated the fact that there had been a phone call from Mathua Kothi to Banjaar Tola before our arrival to let the staff know what our preferences are. This was nice. Mathua Kothi staff really went above and beyond in terms of service while the staff at Banjaar Tola were pleasant but they didn't make as much of an effort. The exception was our female safari guide/naturalist who was brilliant.

The biggest problem facing this lodge is permits. I would advise anyone staying at the lodge to make sure that they have permits before booking in. The rules have recently changed and there is a permit shortage. You don't want to show up and then find out you can't go on safari. I'd also try and find out which part of the park the permits are for. Some of the permits can be a 1hr drive away from the lodge. This was potentially going to be a problem for us on our last day because we had a far permit but we needed to be out of the park by 10am. In the end it was fine; we went for a short drive.

Although the bush is high and it is difficult to see tigers during Dec, we got lucky and saw a female tiger. The other issue with this park is that you can have 20 jeeps all chasing the same tiger in the bush. So there were jeeps driving all over the place to try and catch a glimpse of this one tiger. It made for a subpar experience. Nevertheless, we got really lucky and the tiger came right next to our truck so we had an up close and personal experience. The safari trucks are comfortable, they have blankets and water bottles so you don't mind being in the truck for a long time without seeing tigers.

We really appreciated the special christmas celebration, the chocolates, santa hats, fire, music and dinner buffet. It was a really nice evening. Thank you very much!

It's a good lodge.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Constantlyontheroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 March 2014

The property is just lovely and the tents are spectacular. However the designers concentrated more on decor than safety. The bed is on a platform and you have to be very careful in the dark. The deck and view were outstanding but our outside lights did not work and were not fixed during our stay. The game drives were very disappointing and we did not see a tiger in 3 days - nobody's fault.Good thing there were no tigers because when our vehicle got a flat tire, we all had to pile out of the jeep in the middle of this reserve. Our friends in another jeep had a breakdown. Now shouldn't the Taj properties look into the safety and mechanics of these jeeps? Our entire group questioned whether it was worth a very difficult 5 hour road trip to come to this area.
On the positive note, the property has a fantastic dinner in the bush where the villagers join you for music and dance. We also had a lovely visit to the home of one of the staffers and then we rode around the village which was quite interesting. Also kudos to a fabulous chef, Ajit Swain. He can come to any four star restaurant in New York! In all, the staff was kind, courteous and attentive.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank shapgo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 February 2014

A group of 10 spent 2 days and had a wonderful, exciting,relaxing break. The whole package of luxury tents, the location in the middle of the forest, the staff, the food is first class! Taj Safaris have done a very special job with this location. The tents are 5 star luxury as is the attention and care of all staff, from Manager to nature guides to Chef.

We only did one safari and saw tigers. Do not miss the nature walks, as good as the safari!

Room Tip: All rooms in the east or west wing are special
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Derek N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2014

We stayed at each of the 4 Taj Lodges in the 4 national parks in eastern Madhya Pradesh in north-central India. Each lodge is unique in design but all are superb in comfort, service, cuisine and the quality of the staff. Our capacious and luxurious "tent" was really a suite, with a large bedroom, a deck with a beautiful view of the Banjaar Tola River, a large dressing and bathroom with his and her washbasins containing every amenity imaginable, a tub, a shower and a separate room for the toilet. Dinner on our deck one night was a special treat; heat lamps or braziers are provided to ensure comfort in the winter. Laundry service was free, as was all the bottled water and beer and wine (from Maharashtra; quite drinkable) we wanted. The only thing we didn't like was the round platform on which the very comfortable, square king-size bed was mounted. It was a bit awkward to get into and out of in the middle of the night for us seniors. The morning and afternoon game drives were beautiful, and the lodge provides each guest two blankets and a hot water bottle for the early morning drive.
Working with the travel company &Beyond India, Taj Safaris will put together a package for you that includes transportation from/to the nearest airport and between the lodges in a comfortable car with a professional driver.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank bornin42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 January 2014

it is truly a must visit property specially the bathroom is amazing with fairly good size rooms. The balcony is amazing just overlooking the river. The property is situated right in the core jungle which really gives an experience of a national park.

Room Tip: a must stay place if you visit kanha national park.
  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank parikshit2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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