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Cherrakara P.O Tahlapoya Post, Mananthavadi, 670644 India
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About

#14 of 450 Speciality lodging in Wayanad District
Snuggled into a cosy valley, high up in the hills, with the grand old forest peaks towering paternally around it. Fringe Ford is as cut off from the world as you can get. It probably doesn't feature on a map, has no traffic fumes, no traffic, not even a road, and is thankfully ignored by the cell phone towers. What is does have however, is a fabulous, authentic experience of living in the middle of a remote plantation surrounded by forest, some great treks, silver silence punctuated only by the occasional warning calls of birds or monkeys when a carnivore comes visiting. And it offers you the best peace you've had on vacation anywhere anytime. There is a 360 view of the remote plantation surrounded by forest; all looking identical, but each with its own tale. The balding Namboodri peaks, named after the estate's ex-accountant, the range of hills that rises almost perpendicular at the back of the house, which once climbed, leads one on to Coorg, the peak out there, with the watch tower, which was built one day, and demolished that night by wild elephants. Fringe Ford was named by the Englishman who had first bought the land and built it into a plantation. It changed hands since then, and was finally acquired by its present landlord, Ahmed, who being a naturalist, let the land remain as plantation but adhering to strict eco friendly practices. In fact, the 520-acre property shares its boundaries, not fences with the wildlife sanctuaries of Wyanad and Tholpaty reserve forest, making this entire stretch, one of the last remaining bastions of the Malabar rain forests around, with shelter for its fauna and flora.
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Cherrakara P.O Tahlapoya Post, Mananthavadi, 670644 India
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Mumbai Airport868 kmSee all flights
Kannur International Airport45 kmSee all flights
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Red Earth wrote a review Jan 2021
Bengaluru, India32 contributions12 helpful votes
Where do we as Hoteliers/planters, go for a holiday? Somewhere where you can just let your hair down & breathe fresh air. Somewhere sans pretensions. The pandemic & subsequent lockdown has been hard on all of us. Re-opening had its own challenges. We as a family, were thirsting for a break. Fringe Ford had been on our bucket list for long. We spoke to our good friend Ahmed & packed up excitedly for the holiday. Aditya our older son , had prepped us on the property & we were eager to see it for ourselves. From Kabini where we are based, Fringe Ford is an hour & a half drive away. The little towns of Kerala amaze me. The shops bursting onto the roads with its colourful plastic, steel & wooden ware. The fish on ice, The chicken all dressed (?) .. languorously hanging on their hooks, the mutton .. tail & testicles in tow.. Kerala is one big town with a highway that squeezes itself through, like toothpaste being pressed from an almost empty tube. We wind into the innards of the western ghats, through beautiful landscapes dotted with temples, simple village homes that are yet to see its inhabitants reach the ‘Gelf’ & away from grotesque monstrosities that Middle East money constructs. Deep within as the air turns cooler, we cobble over & literally stumble into this stylish yet simple bungalow. It is said that the place is so undisturbed that even the wildlife saunter in at times. Fringe Ford with its simple, clean lines is a page we all need to peer into. This is a place for true nature lovers. The food cooked traditionally, is wholesome & delicious. Such places are best left to the keepers to decide on your menu & plan for the day. From fabulous treks to ice cold showers in their private waterfall, from night walks through the wilderness to clinking your crystal over a bonfire, Fringe Ford did exactly what it promised... Get us Lost!
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Date of stay: January 2021Trip type: Travelled with family
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slowtrav wrote a review Jan 2021
Minneapolis213 contributions109 helpful votes
This place was a complete and blissful escape from all the busy-ness we have stacked up in our everyday lives. Walks in the forest with the venerable Shaji were rejuvenating, re-energizing. As a naturalist, he is always in complete command of the situation on hikes, listening and seeing and sensing what we city dwellers are blind to. We felt safe on all our hikes, even when when we were following him where there was no visible path. In fact we observed that we were not on alert, in a jungle, on foot because of Shaji. The hospitality of the staff knows no bounds and they serve enormous meals with different guests returning from hikes at different times. The accommodations are comfortable and clean, and more than adequate, because you spend most of your time outdoors anyway. We saw and heard many birds and butterflies - no big animals, but that's okay. A place I would love to return to. Soon. Simply to remember that it exists.
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Date of stay: December 2020
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Shabs07 wrote a review Dec 2020
Bengaluru, India69 contributions25 helpful votes
A chance look into an old outlook traveler which featured fringe intrigued us and just when they opened up after the lockdown times, we had an opportunity to stay here. We reached by lunchtime here and in the early evening headed out for a walk with the in-house naturalist Shaji. He showed us tiger markings in our first few minutes of walk, not one but many in a couple of yards. While we were curious, our inner minds are like - who would believe that? Just about 30 mins into our walk and continuous efforts to keep the kids silent, we hear a huge roar. That's the first time I heard something like that. Spontaneously Shaji ran to the edge with his Binoculars and looked at the valley. The forest trails, the tiger markings, shaji’s inputs, everything gets connected instantly and we too run to Shaji. “It's a tiger which has just hunted down a bison”, Shaji whispers. He said the tiger was hurt and that's why it roared, the bison too is just next to the tiger in its final breath...All this happened in less than 2 minutes and I was still awestruck and unbelieving until I saw through the binoculars myself. The forest, the stream down the valley, the bison, and the tiger were all there. Now, my mind had no choice to doubt that we had witnessed a wild encounter, that too on a walk. Here on there was full alertness, tremendous attention to what Shaji was saying and to our surroundings. We started to head back to the cottage. It was 6.30, but it was completely dark. My son spotted a moving light and we were quick to name it as a firefly. Few more steps and we dint know what was slowly unfolding. While we awed about few more fireflies gently flickering around the bushes on our trail, we were right in midst of a magical scene. Hundreds of fireflies moving around the slopes, and we stand right in between them on pitch dark forest trails, no lights, no torches. I am not sure if any camera could ever capture this moment. It's just part of me now forever. Starlit skies, the simple nutritious home-cooked food, excellent location, rustic cottages, the streams, the darkness, the silence are all a bonus. We did walks…to a large waterfall, a trek to a viewpoint, and a few more walks. In next few days – Walking on pristine forest trails, Elephants grazing around, Elephants bathing in a pond with its baby, Bisons walking past, Spotting a Tiger, leopard scratch marks on a tree, crossing over streams, drinking fresh water directly from the source of Kabini, removing off the leaches, spotting fireflies…was now an everyday ordeal. We were in their territory. I asked Shaji if he was putting up a show just for us . Shaji shared many stories, his love for the forest, pictures from the camera traps, the history of fringe ford, and a lot of information about animal behavior and how one should conduct in the forest and with animals. We stayed here for 4 days and 3 nights and has impacted all of us deeply. The Fringe Ford story is too good to believe, you need to experience it yourself. If you are an explorer, love forests, wildlife, and nature...do stay here a couple of nights. Go without expectations and leave the rest to the forest.
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Date of stay: November 2020
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Room Tip: Dont miss any of the walks, not suitable for children younger than 6
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Laura C wrote a review Nov 2019
29 contributions5 helpful votes
Perfectly situated in a beautifully remote valley surrounded by forest is the gem that is Fringe Ford! You will be well taken care of with all meals deliciously catered and accommadation that is comfortable, spotlessly clean and full of charm. Wonderful walks throughout the 550 acre estate are expertly guided by the intrepid Shaji. This is not your glitzy modern resort but rather a place for communing with nature whilst having all your needs taken care of; a rare treat in this burgeoning world.
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Date of stay: November 2019Trip type: Travelled solo
1 Helpful vote
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Alan B wrote a review Nov 2019
Greater Manchester, United Kingdom9 contributions9 helpful votes
A complete escape from the hectic world beyond. As you journey up the mountain you leave noise and distraction behind to focus on nature and tranquility. Yet when you arrive you are greeted with comfort and outstanding food. The views are fantastic and the staff are incredibly knowledgeable about the wildlife right there on the doorstep. On our first night a family of India Bison stopped just below our room with a civet cat in the tree above. Over our three days we saw wild elephants and the profusion of butterflies and birds.
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Date of stay: October 2019
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IndiaKeralaWayanad District
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Frequently Asked Questions about Fringe Ford
Which popular attractions are close to Fringe Ford?
Nearby attractions include Thirunelli Temple (4.5 km), Brahmagiri Hill (7.5 km), and Pakshipathalam Bird Sanctuary (5.2 km).
What food & drink options are available at Fringe Ford?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast during their stay.
Is parking available at Fringe Ford?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
Are pets allowed at Fringe Ford?
Yes, pets are typically allowed, but it's always best to call ahead to confirm.