Indus Valley Ayurvedic Centre at the foot of Chamundi Hills in Mysuru is the perfect spot for a detox vacation
It looked like a set straight out of a mythological film. Thatched roof cottages spread across the green landscape, cows grazed lazily under the warm morning sun, and chants of Om (from speakers placed at strategic points) reverberated through the surroundings. We were at the Indus Valley Ayurvedic Centre (IVAC) located at the foot of Chamundi Hills in Mysuru.
Keen to understand why it draws visitors not just from India but also abroad, we visited this peaceful treatment centre for a one-night experiential stay.
In the lap of nature
Founded by Dr Talavane Krishna in 1999, the centre is located on Talavane, a 25-acre property that boasts of 3,500 sandalwood trees and is home to several kinds of birds and insects. We were welcomed with the kumkum-aarti tradition, a string of jasmine flowers and a glass of hibiscus water. Since hibiscus is one of the medicinal plants grown at IVAC, the drink was made with fresh flowers. Once the check-in formalities were completed, we headed to one of their luxury cottages, our home for the night.
It was a thatched roof cottage. But concerns about what to expect inside were laid to rest the moment the door was opened for us. The cottage had all the modern amenities for a comfortable stay, from a spacious washroom with a bathtub, a TV, wardrobes and an air conditioner to a hanging egg chair. These modern facilities were balanced with traditional elements like eco-friendly bamboo accents.
Additionally, the open courtyard in the bathroom with a plant in the centre gave the cottage a rustic vibe. After a quick shower, we headed to the dining hall for lunch.
The buffet consisted of two soups, five types of vegetables, two curries, rotis and dosas (from the live station), and a dessert. We were told that all the food is approved by the ayurvedic doctors at the centre. Though less oil, spices, salt and sugar were used, the food was delicious. Post a satisfying lunch, we proceeded for our consultation with one of the doctors. The consultation lasted about 20 minutes, and after a detailed understanding of our sleeping patterns, diet and other physiological issues, the doctor advised us to take the Abhyanga therapy.
After a quick nap, we were feeling refreshed and made our way to the treatment area, led by a massuese who stopped by at our room to guide us to our destination Our treatment began with a footsoak in lukewarm water. Then, two masseuses began the massage. For this Abhayanga treatment, they used a medicated oil that helps remove toxins. After the 60-minute massage,we were asked to sit in a wooden cabinet for a quick steaming session Since the doctor had advised them not to prolong the steaming, we stepped out within 10 minutes and took a shower.
We were then treated to a cup of herbal tea, and the masseuse gave us two laxative capsules to be taken at bedtime. The relaxing treatment had also made us quite hungry, so after changing we headed to the dining hall. The menu was different for dinner and featured a live station for ragi dosa. We ate a leisurely meal of Beetroot Soup, Snake Gourd Palya, Raw Banana Curry with Ragi Dosa, and Khichdi. Post dinner, we were too tired to do anything and walked back to our cottage.
The next morning began with a session of yoga led by a yogi. Breakfast was ready by the time we completed the yoga session, so we headed to the dining area to eat a wholesome morning meal of idlis, oats, upma and coffee. Finally, our stay had come to an end. Though it seems like IVAC issituated far away from the city because of its serene surroundings, it’s just six kms away from the heart of Mysuru. It’s the ideal spot for a detox trip, where your treatments are monitored by skilled Ayurvedic doctors.
Rs 10,500 upwards per night. At Chamundi Hills, Mysuru
The writer vistied the property on invitation by IVAC.