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Extreme Adventures – Cliff Camping in India

by travelmynation
cliff camping in india

Ever heard of Cliff camping in India? Or seen pictures of people camping in tents that dangle on the side of cliffs? Well, the gravity-defying camping experience is now there in India but before you start planning, here are a few things to know about Cliff Camping.


What is cliff camping?

Cliff camping is an extreme adventure where your tents hang on a cliffside and you spend the night suspended in air! The origins of cliff camping can be traced to the ’80s when climbers used this technique in the Yosemite National Park in the US. The climb spanned several days and tired climbers often haul army cots up the cliff and sleep on the suspended beds. The cots gave way to hammocks over time and now it’s evolved into a camping activity. 

The tents are suspended by high-quality ropes so that they can withstand windy weather as well. And of course, the campers will also need to be secured by a harness that needs to be worn at all times! And now, cliff camping in India is a much sought-after adventure! 


Is it safe to cliff camp?

Well, are you worried that you will roll over in your sleep and fall out of your tent? Or that the tent will tear, sending you free-falling? Not really possible – you’re tied onto a harness the entire time. Climbers sleeping on these tents wear a harness that is clipped onto the tent and are often also tied onto the wall itself by another rope. So, it’s safer than crossing the road (probably). But before you plan to do cliff camping in India, we recommend that you check the operator’s credentials and safety record.

Where can you experience Cliff Camping in India?

cliff camping in india
Pic courtesy - Phoenix Expeditions

The Sahyadri mountains in Maharashtra have always been a great spot for camping, trekking, hiking, and other adventure activities. But now a quaint spot in gaining popularity for cliff camping in India. Sandhan Valley is a place where you can experience cliff camping in India. The trek and the camping location are close to Bhandardara which is about 4 hours from Mumbai. The base of the trek starts from Samrad village in Ahmednagar and this is where you will need to reach for your adventure.

What is included in the cliff camping experience?

Well, to be honest, this is a little disappointing. AFAIK, you can really stay overnight while doing cliff camping in India. All the tour operators I contacted for the Sandhan valley experience, told me that campers can only spend about an hour in these tents. So, this is what the entire tour experience goes.

Cliffside camping india
Pic courtesy - Phoenix Expeditions

Most of the tours usually start from Kasara station, which serves as a meeting point for the hikers. From there, you will need to head towards Samrad village in Ahmednagar, which is the base for the trek. The hike can take a couple of hours depending on your group size and speed. And, once you are on top, you will be taken to a cliffside with the hanging tents. A ladder takes you down to the tent or you may have to rappel down into them. All the time you are connected to a harness that keeps you safe. 

Once inside the tent, you get about an hour’s time to experience the thrill of being suspended hundreds of feet in the air. This is probably a good time to take pictures, make videos or video call your friends and family! I would probably take this time to just be and admire the view from the top. 

Cliff camping in india
Pic courtesy - Phoenix Expeditions

After spending a maximum of one hour in the tent, you will be roped back up. If this doesn’t get your adrenaline pumping, you can also do some rappelling or zip lining in the vicinity!

How much does cliff camping in India cost?

The quote I got from the many operators I got ranged from INR 3,500 per person to INR 4,250 per person. These packages usually include the following

  • Transportation from Kasara station to Sandhan and back
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • 1 hour hanging tent experience
  • Gear
  • Tents (for a camp stay in the valley)
  • Expert guide charges

Here are some organizations that conduct these tours.

TREK MATES INDIA

Tariff: INR 3,750/- per person 

Inclusions: Transportation from Kasara, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent stay, technical gear & expert guide charges. 

PHOENIX EXPEDITIONS

Tariff: INR 3,500 per person

Inclusions: Road travel from Kasara to Sandhan valley and back, all meals, tents, technical gear, equipment & expert guide charges.  

TREKS AND TRAILS INDIA

Tariff : INR 3,750 per person 

Inclusions: Road travel from Kasara to Sandhan valley and back, all meals, tents, technical gear, equipment & expert guide charges.

KEEN VENTURERS

Tariff : INR 3,750 per person 

Inclusions: Transportation from Kasara, breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent stay, technical gear & expert guide charges.

Best time for Cliff Camping in India

To get to these hanging tents, you will probably have to hike a bit. Therefore, the monsoons are not a good time for any cliff camping experience. Irrespective of where you do cliff camping in India, always go during the dry season and when it’s not too windy or cold. For Sandhan Valley, the best time to visit will be from October to April. The weather is perfect for trekking with no humidity or heat. Moreover, there are fewer chances of rain which is why it is best for Sandhan Valley camping.

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