If you are someone who is tired of maddening crowds of a touristy place like Manali in Himachal, and are looking for a quaint homestay in an offbeat place, you surely will have this question in your mind “Are offbeat homestays in Himachal good”
As someone who exclusively stays in rustic homestays of remote villages in Himachal, I am here to clear all your apprehensions. So just stick with me till the end and hopefully all your queries will be put to rest.
Are Offbeat Homestays in Himachal Good ?
Offbeat homestays are not just good, they are phenomenal. Staying in homestays mean you stay with locals under the same roof.
In popular tourist resorts, homestays are never actually homestays. They are usually homestay cum guesthouses to be honest. The real homestays are actually in rustic villages which are lesser frequented.
Over my several trips to Himachal, I have usually exclusively stayed in offbeat homestays. And I am yet to face any issues as such. Instead I have experienced incredibly hospitality from all the homestays I have stayed in.
By the way, here is a detailed blog on how to find a place of stay in rustic villages of Himachal. I am sure this will be helpful for people who tread on off the beaten path frequently.
Are Offbeat Homestays in Himachal Safe ?
Yes absolutely ! In fact I personally prefer only homestays as I get to live with a local family where I feel the safest. So budget homestays are the best for solo travelers.
In fact, if you want to experience the true beauty of Himachal, offbeat homestays located in rustic villages are the best and the safest.
When stay with a local family in a homely environment you tend to feel. And even the hosts treat you as a part of the family.
So offbeat homestays in Himachal are the safest and the best way to explore the Himalayan state in my honest opinion. By the here is a more detailed blog on how safe homestays are in Himachal.
What To Expect From An Offbeat Homestay In Himachal
Before I take you through my experience, I’ll just mention that homestays are meant for one to feel at home and not at a hotel or guesthouse. So one should not expect any kind of luxury at such offbeat homestays.
Of course you get clean rooms and simple yet delicious lip-smacking home-cooked food. But do not expect cafe like multi-cuisine food. Basically the idea is to live like locals and eat what they eat.
Also, some of the offbeat homestays might be a bit difficult to reach. Like for example one of the homestay I visited in Sainj did not have a road and required a hike of about 30 minutes to reach. So do keep this in my mind.
Offbeat homestays are meant for a slow living away from the hustle and bustle. You are free to hike around, engage in conversations with locals, understand the culture.
My Experiences With Offbeat Homestays In Himachal
Over the course of several trips to some rustic and remote villages, I have had the chance to stay at some of the most offbeat homestays in Himachal and have had equally heart-warming experiences.
Hopefully these beautiful experiences of mine will inspire you guys to opt for such amazing homestays and prove that they are indeed worth the experience.
So with further ado, offbeat homestays in Himachal are worth it through my experiences.
Living Slow In Kullu Valley At Yuthok Homestay
My aversion to crowded and touristy places always leads me to find offbeat stays in Himachal. That’s when I stumbled upon Rajeshwar Thakur’s Instagram one fine day. And I am really glad that I did.
I personally have strong inclination towards eccentric culture of Himachal and I love experiencing the rustic charm of Himachal. So living slow in offbeat rustic homestay like Yuthok Homestay was a no-brainer for me.
Perched at a comfortable altitude of 1500 m, Yuthok homestay is located amidst dreamy orchards, plenty of open spaces and beautiful rustic villages of Upper Kullu. The homestay itself houses a big orchard full of apples, pears, plums, peaches, persimmons.
I happen to stay at Yuthok homestay for a month and felt like a part of the family by the time I left. Such experiences like these prompt me to visit offbeat homestays.
The host Rajeshwar thakur and his family took incredible care of me. The incredible lip-smacking homemade delicacies of Lahaul and Kullu, were the highlight.
Plus Rajeshwar Ji took me to some of the most ancient villages, pristine meadows, hidden valleys around Kullu valley. So all in all it was quite a wholesome experience at Yuthok homestay.
If you yearn for offbeat experiences, here is a detailed Kullu valley itinerary away from the hustle and bustle of touristy places.
Experiencing Incredible Hospitality At Rabbit House Homestay in Sainj
Sainj valley was always on my agenda for quite a long time. And in the winters of 2021, I got experience the beauty Sainj while staying at some insanely offbeat homestays.
Idyllic villages, ancient wooden temples, impeccable meadows, virgin hiking trails, unique culture were the reasons I developed a strong inclination towards the pristine valley of Sainj.
I spent the majority of my time in the beautiful 100-year old rabbit house homestay in the lesser frequented Kamtan village of Raila.
I must say that I absolutely loved my time at this Rustic homestay. The hosts Bicky Ji and his family were extremely amiable and hospitable. The food was absolutely sumptuous.
Kamtan village is located at a height of around 2000 m and is surrounded dreamy pine forests, huge mountains and rustic villages. This pristine locale turns into a dreamland when shrouded in fresh snow.
There are lots of places interests near Kamtan, like Tower Temples, ancient villages, pristine meadows. And thanks to Mohit Thakur, youngest child of Bicky Ji, I could explore Raila to such an extent.
So if the idea of spending some time in solitude with incredibly humble local family in the Himalaya fascinates you, then head straight to this wonderful offbeat rabbit house homestay.
If you wish to embark on an epic sojourn to the beautiful valley of Sainj, here is a detailed Sainj valley itinerary for you folks.
Experience of A Life Time In The Himalayan Wonderland Of Lahaul.
The Himalayan wonderland of Lahaul always fascinated me. The high mountains, rugged glaciers, rustic villages, tribal culture, humble people always enticed me to Lahaul valley.
During my month long stint in Lahaul during the blissful summers, I was advised by Rajeshwar Thakur to visit this wonderful Zostel Homes located in the village of Rashil.
I was apprehensive at first thanks to the homestay being associated with Zostel. But I am glad I did, because it unraveled the ever-elusive Pattan valley for me.
Thanks to Puneet Bughie and his family’s wonderful hospitality I felt like I was at home. Amazing Lahauli delicacies, wonderful conversations about Pattan valley, learning about its culture were the highlights of my time here.
The setting of homestay is absolutely mesmerizing. Rashil village is located on the left bank of Chandrabhaga right at the base of high mountains. You can insanely picturesque vistas of Pir Panjal on one side and trans-Himalayan range on the other.
If you have never been to the beautiful valley of Lahaul, here is a detailed backpacking guide to Lahaul valley.
Blissful Summers In Tirthan At Apna Ghar Homestay
A one-week sojourn to the beautiful Seraj (pronounced as Saraj) in 2019 valley just mesmerized me. Rustic charm of Saraj coupled with serene vistas compelled me to visit the lesser frequented areas of Tirthan valley ( Sub Valley of Seraj region).
My search for a quaint stay in Tirthan valley, surrounded by pristine river, beautiful villages, intriguing hiking trails landed me to the beautiful Apna Ghar Homestay. Hosted by equally humble Thewa Ram Ji and his wife, I found the stay in Bathad blissful.
During my stay, Thewa Ram Ji was kind enough to take me to his ancestral village of Galingcha. It is surely one of the most beautiful villages I have witnessed. Surrounded by beautiful mountains, towering pines, pretty orchards and typical kathi-Kuni styled houses I truly could not comprehend its surreal beauty.
There are several pristine villages you can hike around Bathad that will truly leave you enamored by its rustic charm and pristine beauty. Plethora of impeccable hiking trails will compel you trudge amidst some magical landscapes.
If the above did not inspire you to opt for an offbeat homestay in the rustic Himachali villages, I don’t know what will. On a serious I hope my experiences were able to showcase that offbeat homestays are the best.
To conclude, I hope that you’ve got your answer to the question “Are offbeat homestays in Himachal good”. Offbeat homestays in Himachal in my opinion are actually the best way to experience the true beauty and culture of Himachal.
In case you have any queries you can reach out to me in the comments below.