Saturday, September 29, 2012

Hidden Village

Once upon a time ......... yes this incident unfolded in a continuing true story.

We were just approaching the end of summer of 2006. My whole family in two cars went to Shahapur to a Jain Temple called Manas Mandir. Same day evening we decided to go to Tansa Lake, halfway down the road outside the village in a remote area my car broke down, Engine oil was over. We all were standing on the road and from behind some bushes a man came out and inquired about us and advised us to send somebody on highway to buy engine oil and invited rest of us to his small cottage built at the back of a couple of acres of land, away from road, covered with bushes some trees and below which ran a small and beautiful stream. We spent sometime in the shade there, were offered water and rest till our car was readied to take the road again. The children enjoyed the waterfall and raw jungle.  After that brief meeting, we went back giving each other our contacts details. His name is Tony D' Sousa.

That evening we saw three rainbows together on way back. A good sign.

At this point I was a photographer who was only a nature lover.

In next two Years, thanks to my friend Avinash Sant I started photographing Nature. First Butterflies and then got some birding knowledge also. In August 2008 Tony D'Sousa Invited me to his place which he had by then named 'Hidden Village' and when I saw the place after 2 Years it was converted in to lush green forest patch with lots of evergreen trees. In between 3 Hut type houses made with local Eco friendly material, by local people, Designed by himself. I happily started to explore the area and came across some beautiful landscapes.

Photos are shot at 'The Hidden Village'

Some of the beautiful views. small and big water ponds with fresh running water, Way to house made with stone, small and thin stream flowing from the hill, Wooden bridge across the stream etc. By this time I was a novice in birding but could identify some of the birds like Puff Throated Babbler, Gray Francolin, Common Iora, Gray Breasted Prinia, Ashy Prinia, Tailor Bird, Common Hawk Cuckoo, Crimson Sunbird, Purple Rumped Sunbird, Golden Oriol, Rose Ring Parakit  Jungle Crow, Small Blue Kingfisher, White Breasted Kingfisher, Black Drongo, Long Tail Shrike, Scaly Breasted Munia, White Breasted Fan Tail Flycatcher, Tickell's Blue Flycatcher, Black Nap Monarch Flycatcher, Paradise Flycatcher, Cormorant, Pond Heron, Little Egret, Cattle Egret, Cinnamon Bittern, Jungle Bush Quail, Red Spur Fowl, Tawny Bellied Babbler, Jungle Babbler, Oriental White Eye, Oriental Honey Buzzard etc. 

Gray Breasted Prina

Long Tail Shrike
Oriental White Eye
Common Iora Female
Golden Oriel 
White Breasted Fan Tail Flycatcher
Ashy Prina
Tickell's Blue Flycatcher
Common Hawk Cuckoo
Crimson Sunbird

Lomg-Brand Bushbrown
Gram Blue on Wild Mung Flower

Blue Oak Leaf Butterfly
Common Cerulean

Unknown Caterpiller

Then he took me to surrounding areas, a nearby village and an amazing Lake surrounded by thick forest. On the way we saw so many Butterflies, Insects, Reptiles and other Flora and Fauna.

Wild Banana

Attractive Fungus 
Mother and Child
Nearby Village on the way to Tansa Lake

My most recent visit (last week of Sept 2012) got me mesmerised by the developments at ‘Hidden Village’ again and it has been turned into a beautiful Resort right in the middle of Jungle surrounded by wetland areas accompanied by a noisy swirling stream inside. The cottages he has designed are all unique. And their names too, i.e. Patil, Crest, Hill (these are for larger families) while tribal, exotic and forest is ideally designed for couples. Camp house is unique too, with no regular walls, doors and windows, one still has, sitting area, bedroom inside tents, attached w.c, a very unique concept for outdoor people, and along with that a beautiful swimming pool a little upmarket for a village scape, Indoor games, Children park, Eating area with library. Visitors come across the company of Goats, Turkeys, Ducks, Roosters, Guinea fowls and Geese etc. also.

The stay at Hidden Village is good opportunity for Nature Photographers to experiment and learn. See My Nature and Professional work at Picasa.


  1. Wonderful story! Nicely narrated with beautiful pictures!!

  2. Vow Jitubhai! Nice one... Want to read many more like this now..

  3. Exciting !! Thank you very much Jitubhai & looking forward to more journey through your blog and experience beauty of the nature gifted by God.

  4. Woww Jayesh...I would love to see this treasaure. In case u plan to go again and ur car has a seat for me, do let me know :)