An exotic escapade: Getaway from Lucknow to Bardia village & experience authentic Tharu culture

An exotic escapade: Getaway from Lucknow to Bardia village & experience authentic Tharu culture

Homestays exploring Tharu culture will be open for tourists from November 15.

In an effort to put the ethnic Tharu tribal community on the tourism map and acquaint people with their modalities and way of life, homestay services have been introduced in Uttar Pradesh's Bahraich district.

The Bardia village, located in Bahraich that lines the Nepal border, will soon offer model homestays blended into a thatched hut where tourists will get to experience the authenticity and uniqueness of Tharu culture. The aim is to bring the culture in the mainstream development and contribute to their economic advancement.

With that out of the way, let's jump to talking about the Tharu community!

Who are the Tharu tribals?

One of the oldest inhabitants of Terai region of Bahraich district (and south borders of Nepal), the traditional tribe is an ethnic group that speaks Tharu dialects (influenced by Indo-Aryan languages). With joint family systems, patrilocal marriages within the tribe, spirit worshipping, and more, the Tharu are recognised as an official nationality in Nepal, while India lists them under scheduled tribes.

Their culture is unique, with dances like Lathi (stick) Naach, Ago Naach (fire dance), and Mayur Naach (peacock dance), as the highlights, and food like Dhikri (dish made of rice flour), Ghonghi (gravy dish with water snail), Sidhara (made of fried fish), Pakuwa (barbecued pork delicacy), Anadik Jhor/Jhar (alcohol made from fermented rice) and more. They people eat crabs, fish, fresh water shrimps, since fishing is one of their major livelihood means.

The Tharu, that implies 'followers of Theravada Buddhism' (as claimed by some), live in huts that have thatched roofs and wattle walls. Read more about them here.

Look forward to this unique experience

In the recent development, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Akashdeep Badhawan has helped connect Tharu women with the organisation 'The Helping Hand', to generate employment opportunities for them.

Thus, at this homestay, people will experience Tharu culture coming alive. From tasting traditional food to witnessing the tribal dance, tourists can also explore indigenous products made by rural women. This, in turn, will also reduce the dependence of the tribals on the forests and minimise animal-man conflict.

The tribals will get a chance to earn through selling their local handicrafts and showcasing their much exotic culture that is not known to many. Opening for tourists from November 15, four homes will reportedly be utilised for the same.

Tharu culture at Dudhwa Tiger Reserve

The Dudhwa Tiger Reserve (DTR) is also slated to introduce tribal tourism at Katarniaghat wildlife sanctuary that is open to visitors from November 15. A 2.5 hours distance from Bardia village, you can also visit DTR for a similar Tharu experience!

"Tourists will get to see the lifestyle of Tharus, their dance, taste their food and take a feel of their culture in Bardiya," said Sanjay Pathak, director of DTR. "We will organise an outreach programme with the help of local NGOs to make Tharu aware of the concept," he added.

Last year, a 'Tharu thali' was also launched at Dudhwa for tourists to taste authentic tribal food. Tharu women had prepared the platter.

A must-do getaway

Located 236 kms from Lucknow, the Bardia village is calling you to experience the exotic culture and be a part of eco-tourism x tribal tourism. A 5-hour drive from the city, you're in for a wild treat and cultural ecstasy like never before at this beautiful Tharu homestay!

An exotic escapade: Getaway from Lucknow to Bardia village & experience authentic Tharu culture
Drive from Lucknow to Bahraich's Katarniaghat Sanctuary, the new home to one-horned rhinoceros

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