Situated at the edge of Madhya Pradesh’s Bandhavgarh National Park, this lodge is the latest creation from the Samode family, whose properties include the majestic Samode Palace outside Jaipur. A dozen rammed-earth villas are furnished with Persian carpets, four-poster beds, murals by local Gond artists, and big balconies overlooking the adjacent scrub where birds, deer, and sometimes even tigers can be spotted. There is a pool with shaded pavilions for lazy afternoons, and a dining terrace where champagne breakfasts are served under an enormous mahua tree. Borrow the resort’s mountain bikes for a ride through the nearby villages, or book a jeep safari into the 450-square-kilometer national park. Samode’s guides access the reserve via its remote Kothi gate; if you’re lucky, you may not see another tourist all day.
Bandhavgarh; 91-141/263-2370; samode.com; doubles from US$882