Appreciating Agri Tourism with Courtyard by Marriott, Chakan

Living in a bustling city at a fast pace often leaves us disconnected with many things, especially the food we eat. We often stalk glossy supermarket aisles in search of healthy, organic or specialty food but how many of us are interested in knowing how the food that gives us sustenance is actually produced? Do we ever think of making a trip to a nearby farm to meet farmers, who toil endlessly to bring nature's bounty in our homes or take our kids to a cattle shed when they ask, "Where does milk come from?"

Agri Tourism, may hold different meaning across the globe, primarily involves indulging in farm related activities and/or a stay on the farm. A beautiful & innovative way to experience the shades of rural life and learn about the source of our food, Agri Tourism has gained slow but steady popularity among travelers. When Courtyard by Marriott, Chakan invited us to experience their Agri Tourism package, that offered us an irresistible way to get in touch with our roots,we were hooked!!


For a few, especially travelers with kids, staying on a farm may prove challenging. Courtyard Chakan offers a seamless balance of luxury & rural experience with this innovative package. One such weekend, we drove into the cozy hotel, located in the industrial area and soaked in the relaxed homely vibe. After check-in, we stepped into our Junior suite (a surprise upgrade) equipped with a separate living area, spacious bedroom, walk-in closet and got ready for lunch at the hotels round the clock restaurant- Momo cafe.





Located at the lobby level, the restaurant serves international cuisine with local favorites on the menu. We tried delicious local chicken curry (tambada rassa), prawn curry with piping hot rice & some juicy masala promfret on the side.



After lunch, we walked around the property & noticed large outdoor & indoor space suitable for office meets, conferences & wedding functions. A fully equipped gym tempted me but I chose to spend time by the poolside by having some coffee as the sun started its beautiful descend.



Guests can enjoy good views seated in the alfresco section of Momo cafe too.



For dinner, we tried in room dining & were bowled over by the presentation. Neatly presented table with matching silver with piping hot food were an irresistible combination for a good time.


The next day after breakfast, we started for our farm experience. Located at approximately 20 minute drive from the hotel, the farm belongs to Nilesh & his family. Lush green with river Brahma flowing by the 12 acre farm, it made for a beautiful sight!!

A hot cup of tea later, we started with our first activity & stepped into the cattle shed- home to beautiful cows. We learned about cattle feeding & day to day activities involved in cattle breeding. Though apprehensive at first, I enjoyed milking the cow (my first ever time) & was amazed at the taste of fresh milk.



A steep path led us to the farm that grows vegetables like potatoes, onions, cabbage & crops like bajra (millet), chana, rajma & other seasonal produce.

 


When we saw a bullock cart drawn by two healthy bullocks advancing towards us, we knew we were in for a surprise!! With help of Nilesh's father, I tried ploughing & flattening the soil but could hardly keep pace with the speed of the bullocks!!! The bullock cart ride challenged me to keep upright as I fought gravity & enjoyed to the fullest.



Famished, we headed back to the house to enjoy a simple home cooked meal made with ingredients grown on the farm. Bhakri (rotis made with millet), rajma curry & a delicious peanut chutney, served in the simplicity of farmland, made for a meal to remember.



As we bid our goodbyes to the lovely family & started back to our home-Mumbai, my thoughts kept going back to the beautiful weekend spent at Courtyard Chakan. The tinkling laughter of kids as they ran around the farm, a lovely meal enjoyed in company of nature & the loving nature of the people deeply connected with nature.



If you want to take a break from sandy beaches having endless martinis during your vacation, the Agri Tourism package at Courtyard Chakan is a beautiful experience. Try your hand at something pure & different like milking cows, feeding cattle & picking fresh vegetables & fruits from trees! Do not get worried about getting your hands dirty....the fruits of your labor as you sit down to enjoy a meal in company of loving people will be an experience to remember!

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  1. Thank you Ritcha for spending time on www.wickedspoonconfessions.com

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