Up in the Hills,
Deep in the Forest,
Down by a Stream,
Hidden from the World
Off The Grid is an exclusive homestay in the Western Ghats, on the border of Goa and Karnataka, that offers visitors a genuine break from the going-ons of the world. True to its name, it is a refuge in the forests that is unconnected to electricity, telephony, or the internet. Instead, it invites its visitors to reconnect to the sights, sounds, smells of the natural world- whether it is the gentle babbling of the brook, or the calls of the birds and animals, or the stunning panorama of the star-studded sky.
Off The Grid offers a truly special and unique experience. One traverses the thickly-forested and thinly-populated portions of the Western ghats to reach this charming little farm, that has little more than a few comfortable living and shared spaces. But, the bounty of nature is on full display. This place is ideal for people who enjoy communing with nature, being surrounded by nothing but the flora and fauna of the surrounding hills, flowing streams, and towering forests. We find our visitors tend to be bird watchers, star gazers, artists, agriculturists, or simply those who want to experience the peace and tranquility that comes from being connected with the resplendence of nature.
At an altitude of 600 meters, Off The Grid is blessed with a year-round wonderful climate. With Hill Station weather, hot and humid nights are rare and the mornings always start with a chill. Indeed, for most of the year, a campfire is burning in the night to keep you warm, making for merry evenings.
At Off The Grid we use our own basic energy supply which is predominantly solar. We use solar energy for lighting, a waterfall for plentiful year round water supply, and firewood from the forest for cooking with our ovens, grills, and stoves.
The Farming at Off The Grid today is the same as it has been on small farms in these areas for hundreds of years- mainly rice-growing, some fruit trees and of course our vegetables in the kitchen garden.
Every year we try to improve our farming and varieties of salads, herbs, vegetables, and pulses are all coming up.
Though blessed with abundant water, the soil is rocky and challenging for many types of cultivation. Self-sufficiency is still a dream, but being true to the land, we ensure as much as possible of what is cultivated finds its way to the dinner plate.
We have 3 cozy types of accommodations:
The stream facing cabin can accommodate 3 single beds or a double and a single bed. This room has a sit out overlooking the jungle and stream.
The rooftop rooms are airy and elevated. They offer great views of the jungle all around. Spacious and ideal for families.
The furnished tent is a wonderful, large room for those wanting the camping experience.
Private and close to the wild nature around with an exclusive sit out at the front.Ideal for a family or a romantic night away for a couple.
All our rooms have clean bathrooms, clean linen, blankets, towels. Hot water by the bucket is provided for bathing.
Our speciality resides in our oven-fired pizzas, homemade breads, barbecues and anything that can be grilled or cooked on a wood fire. We offer Indian, Asian, and European dishes with the essence on homely and healthy food using many locally found ingredients, and of course anything grown on the farm.
Meal Timings are as follows:
Breakfast: 8:30 am-10:00 am
Lunch: 1:00 pm-3:00 pm
Dinner: 8:00 pm-9:30 pm
Our menus are planned keeping in mind the dietary needs of all our guests, offering a healthy, fresh spread of mostly vegetarian food. These are served in buffet-fashion at our dining table beside the stream during the day, and by our campfire in the evenings. No Room Service.
The Wilderness around Off The Grid is a natural adventure playground for nature lovers. There are many hidden waterfalls which we visit, one of which is at a stone's throw from the property, and a better swimming pool you could not find.
Wildlife is plentiful, although sightings are rare due to the thickness of the forest. But signs of Indian Gaur (locally known as Bison) and the largest bovine on earth are common, and other animals like Sambar Deer, Sloth Bear, Porcupine, Ant Eaters and, of course, Leopards are always around. We expect our guests to respect this pristine and undisturbed environment so the animals can continue to thrive in it.
Trekking here is ideal and the best way to enjoy the area. The mixed forest and African Savannah like grasslands within close range of the property make short treks very easy.
Many bird watchers also come to see species like the Asian Fairy Bluebird, Rufous Babbler, Great Indian Hornbill, White-bellied Blue Flycatcher, Yellow-browed Bulbul, Grey Jungle Fowl and Flame-throated Bulbul and many more, but sightings may be difficult due to the density of the forest. The forest department organizes a guided treks to the top of Dudhsagar waterfalls.
Workshops:During the season we have a range of workshops for kids, families, adults, potters, clay lovers, cob building enthusiasts, and bird watchers. Please check with us for our upcoming workshops.
There is a new pottery studio with a wood-fired kiln taking shape. People are welcome to try their hand at pottery, but classes are available only on request.
Castle Rock station is in Karnataka and is 10km away.Londa Junction is 35 km away. Trains from Bangalore, Chennai, Pune, Mumbai, New Delhi and other places pass through either of these stations. There are also trains from Goa to Castle Rock which offer a spectacular view of the Dudhsagar waterfalls. Please check the train timetable for schedules.
Transport can be arranged from these stations.
Goa Airport is a 2 and ½ hour drive from Off the Grid. We can arrange transport to and from the airport at a reasonable charge.
For the intrepid, single traveller a bike taxi can be arranged for short distances. Buses come to Mollem or Anmod from where we can collect you. Most places in Goa are reached within 2 1/2 hours. We can arrange a vehicle to drop you or pick you up. If you are driving from Pune or Bangalore to Goa, Off The Grid is a perfect 16km detour from the highway NH4A. We provide exact directions to the property to avoid getting lost.
Rs.3,750/- (+ 5% service charge) per person per night .
Rs.5,000/- (+ 5% service charge) per person per night for single occupancy.
Board, Food, Trekking
Cycling and Pottery will be charged extra based on availability, upon request.
Off The Grid is owned by Sylvia Kerkar and John Pollard, a wife and husband team. Along with a handful of staff, they run the property tending to a variety of tasks such as trekking, cooking, building, repairing, attending to the fields and other chores.
Sylvia Kerkar is from Bangalore and Goa. She is passionate about ceramics and runs her own pottery studio at Off The Grid and in Goa.
John Pollard is from England and an adventure sports enthusiast. He pioneered white water rafting in South India in 1999 and started running the first Rafting operations in Peninsular India. Known internationally for being the first person, followed by others, to open South India's rivers for recreational white water boating.
It’s not just kids who like to play with mud! At OTG we take mud and clay very seriously.
Sylvia Kerkar has been a potter for the last 17 years. Her studio at OTG runs with kick-wheels and a wood-fired kiln.
Over the years we have tried our hands at building with raw mud bricks and also making finer things with clay and baking them in our kiln.
There is usually some ceramic ware being produced at the pottery as a continuous studio activity, a treat for visitors interested in the process, to observe.
Poppalwadi, Diggi Road,
CASTLE ROCK, PO
+91 96234 51758 - John
+91 90490 81097 - Sylvia
If the numbers are out of range then we are OffTheGrid, so call or message on the Farm Mobile.
If you cant reach us please be sure to email us. Send a message to the phones we will get back to you.