The backdrop of the evocative Himalayas provides an alluring setting for a quiet and restorative getaway. Hence, it's not surprising that you'll find some of the best places to pamper yourself in the mountains, in the states of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and beyond. Whether you're looking for a romantic escape, a healing retreat, or exploration of the great outdoors (or even a combination of all three!), you'll find it at these top Himalayan spa resorts.
If you really want to get away from it all, you might also be interested in these 10 Boutique Himalayan Village Getaways Off the Beaten Track .
Wildflower Hall, apart from being one the most romantic hotels in India
, also has one of the top luxury spas
in the country. Part of the Oberoi chain, it consistently receives five star reviews and has a string of awards. The blissful spa pavilion is set amongst cedar forests, with fresh air and a view of snow capped mountains. The spa uses plant and flower essences in its aromatherapy and Ayurveda based treatments.
Tucked away amidst apple and cherry orchards on the outskirts of Manali
, The Himalayan will transport you back to the Medieval era in the mountains. Built in Victorian Gothic Revival style, it consists of a meticulously furnished (with antiques and collectables) Gothic facade castle, and eight cottages interspersed around an outdoor swimming pool and orchard garden. The spa offers a wide range of massages and skin treatments designed pamper and detoxify the body, and there's a couples room as well.
Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa
Located 8,825 feet above sea level in the Pir Panjal range of the Himalayas, Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa is set over seven acres of pine valley. It has 85 rooms, including four luxury cottages, all built in traditional Kashmiri architectural style. They've been designed to offer stunning panoramic views. The resort is conveniently located within walking distance of the Gulmarg Gondola, which takes skiers and sightseers up to Kongdoori Mountain, the highest ski point in the Himalayas. This is a new resort (opened in late 2012) and its Alaya Spa is scheduled to commence operations in October 2013. It will have five treatment rooms, each with its own steam room, offering Ayurvedic therapies and aromatherapy to deep tissue massages.
Not far from Mussoorie in Uttarakhand, Kanatal is home to this delightfully tranquil boutique resort. There are 20 rooms and a suite, built over a sprawling five acre plot that's surrounded forests, fruit trees, and birds. The views, which appear from everywhere, are breathtaking. The resort's spa provides a range of skin treatments and massages, and you can design your own depending on your requirements. There's also a Jacuzzi, sauna, steam room, fitness center, and couples treatment room.
Located on the fringes of the protected sal forest west of Dehradun, Vishranti is a private estate owner Mr. Michael Dalvi, an acclaimed Ranji Trophy cricket player. It's now open as an exclusive luxury getaway in the midst of nature. The guest cottages are designed in the style of colonial countryside bungalows, with sloping roofs and wide wrap around verandas. A highlight is the 23 acre organic farm, from which guests can choose their own vegetables for their meals. Wildlife lovers will also appreciate the exotic birds that permanently inhabit the area. Vishranti has a world class Rudraksha Tree Spa, constructed out of stone from the Ganges river and nested under a Rudraksha tree. What's particularly distinctive about this spa is that many of the herbs used in its therapies are grown at the herbal farms around the resort.
The only luxury resort to be situated on the banks of the Ganges river in Haridwar
(albeit around 10 kilometers from the hectic city), Aalia's soothing slate buildings are also close to Rajaji National Park. Most of its suites have huge private terraces, and there's also a 4,150 square foot, three bedroom villa for families or groups traveling together (you'll get your own private study, beautifully designed living room with fireplace opening onto a private garden, a dining room, and personal butler service). The resort has a mesmerizing riverside infinity pool, and luxury spa and steam room offering an array of massages and other therapies. Guests can participate in daily yoga, meditation, and pranayama, as well as a Ganga aarti
on the resort's river bank. If you want to get active, jeeps are provided for jungle safaris.
Ananda in the Himalayas
Ananda in the Himalayas is India's world famous destination spa, built on a Maharaja's palace estate. For holistic wellness, there's nowhere better to immerse yourself than Ananda. Therapies, based on traditional Indian practices, are personalized according to individual needs and can be designed to de-stress, cleanse, and relax. Anti-aging and weight loss programs are also available. Locally grown organic herbs and vegetables are used in cooking. Plus, there's an enticing spa boutique, stocking everything from music to organic food. The Himalayan Bliss package will give you a taste of everything Ananda has to offer, including detectible cuisine, spa experiences, and activities in and around the resort.
Span Resort and Spa
Span Resort and Spa is situated on 10 acres of woodland by the banks of the Beas river between Manali and Kullu. The extensive variety of outdoor activities offered by the resort makes the most of the area, which is a renowned destination for adventure lovers. Yet, wellness isn't overlooked. There's a spa with four treatment rooms (including one couple's room), swimming pool, Jacuzzi, and gym. Book a seven day yoga package which includes accommodation, healthy vegetarian meals, daily yoga sessions, individual counselling, nature walks, visits to ancient temples and monasteries, and a Himalayan Ayurvedic massage.
Moksha Spa is not only versatile in what it offers guests, it's also located conveniently close to Delhi
five hours drive) for a weekend Himalayan getaway. Guests can choose from three distinct experiences: Pampering, Wellbeing, or Discovering. The resort is reached by a 10 minute cable car ride up a hill. Its facilities include six yoga and meditation pavilions, Turkish Haman, outdoor heated pool, Jacuzzi, luxury spa, gym, children's club, Thai massage salon, and nail bar and hair salon. Daily Himalayan Discovery Experiences (activities) are organized. If you're keen for a side trip, Parwanoo is only a few kilometers from Kalka, where the historical toy train
starts its spectacular journey to Shimla.
This eco-tourism resort is set in pristine virgin forest in Shoghi, around 30 minutes before Shimla, on land provided by Himachal Pradesh Forest Department under its new Ecotourism policy. The result, which feels like you're holidaying in a national park but with the comforts of a boutique hotel, is inspiring. With its adventure course, walking trails, and Sublime Spa set high on a ridge, Aamod will appeal to both nature lovers and wellness seekers alike. Unwind with an Ayurvedic or aromatherapy spa treatment. Relax in the private, open air Jacuzzi with dramatic panoramic views. Aamod will also set up a table and serve you anywhere you want to eat, even right in the middle of the forest!