Explore Majakhali, Uttarkhand

An event in nature at the foothills of the Himalayas specially curated for teenagers, open for ages 13 and above…

There is something about the outdoors, the wild, which allures with its charm of awe, wonder and mystery. The wilderness is our one true home and in it we find oneness. Nature is not external but integral to all of us. And with no exceptions, we’re all children of nature.

The wilderness and wellbeing program shares our collective understanding, kinship, and vital need to reconnect and restore our harmony with nature. This program also empowers the participants with a sense of resilience to face the world we’re living in.

Travel Essentials

Duration: 6 nights and 7 days (including travel time)

Dates: 21th April – 27th April

Location: Majkhali and Surrounding forests near Ranikhet, in Uttarkhand.

Accommodation: Homestays

Altitude: 1800 mts

Climate: Pleasant/sunny days with cold mornings/nights

Season: Spring (Temp. High 22 deg C, Low 8 deg C)

Nearest Railhead: Haldwani

There are also trains from New Delhi(NDLS) to Kothgodam. One can also car-pool in a shared cab/car.

Pick up can be arranged from Kothgodam.

Nearest Airport: Pantnagar


Ajay Rastogi (Foundation for Contemplation of Nature),

Vijetha Sanjay Mysoremutt (Nature Kids)

Email: vijethasanjay at gmail.com


Day 1 – Arriving in Majkhali

Majkhali is a 30 minute drive from Ranikhet and easy to reach whether from the railway station in Haldwani (3 Hours) or from the Pantnagar airport (4 hours).

Participants are required to reach the location through self organised transport with directional assistance from the hosts.

The day is free to settle into ones homestays and get familiarised with the family and the landscape around. In the evening we shall all gather together for a brief introductory sitting followed by a welcome dinner.

Night back in our homestays.

Day 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 – Exploration in and around Majkhali

The Himalayas always has a special allure and opportunities to test one’s endurance of body and mind. The landscapes are healing by themselves.

Camping, bird watching, riverside-walking, nature immersion activities, sharing and debating, reflecting, games and activities are our means of discovering the space and ourselves.

We’re also keen on understanding the elements of a landscape, and how our interactions with it affect our connection to the fundamental aspects of life.

Food is also an essential aspect to understand the interconnectedness of life and its flourishing. Hands-on, interactive sessions shed light on the significance of land, water, and air in this context. They provide context on bio-cultural heritage and involve sharing experiences related to ecology, culture, food, diversity, nutrition, and celebration. Additionally, participants can learn about traditional seeds and community seed banks.

Towards the end, we enjoy exploring the importance of gratitude and respect for life’s source, motivating us to take meaningful action together.

Day 7 – Onwards Journey

The retreat culminates on this day, and we wish the very best to those ready for their own ongoing journeys!

Participation Expenses

INR 19,500/person


  • All accommodation for 6 nights
  • All meals and tea
  • Facilitator Costs
  • All sessions and activities
  • Forest walks


  • Travel to and from Majkhali
  • Expenses arising out of any unforeseen circumstances

Facilitator Profiles

Ajay Rastogi

Ajay Rastogi is co-founder of the Foundation for Contemplation of Nature and Director of the Vrikshalaya Himalayan Centre based in Central Himalaya, Uttarakhand, India. Ajay’s formal education is in the fields of Agriculture, Agro forestry, Environment and Ethics.

He is a recipient of several awards: South Asian Youth Leader (1991); Erasmus Mundus European Union Fellow (2007); Nehru Fulbright Environmental Leadership Fellow (2010); and Global Maverick Teacher (2016). In 2020, the residential program on Resilient Leadership was conferred International Mountain Prize. In 2023, Vrikshalaya received national recognition for working on Integral Humanism.

Over a career span of over 25 years, Ajay worked as a grassroots worker, coordinator for a Himalayan WWF/UNESCO/Kew garden initiative, Fair-trade Auditor, and led the Organic Agriculture Capacity Building Programme in India, jointly implemented by the Government of India and FAO of the United Nations. He was also the India team lead for ‘Indigenous Bio-cultural Heritage for Sustainable Development’ in cooperation with the Lepcha and Limbu ethnic communities in the Eastern Himalayan region.

For many years, Ajay has been working towards mainstreaming values of deeper connection with nature. Targeting the youth, it offers customized residential courses, ‘Resilient Leadership in the Himalayas’ . The course comprises transformative and experiential learning modules based on 3 principles: dignity of physical work, interdependence and interconnectedness. It helps students in recognising the vital bridge between inner and outer sustainability.

To promote mindfulness, Ajay also facilitates sessions in office/ group settings or offers side events in conferences/ workshops in many countries. Known to provide personal health and wellbeing benefits, mindfulness is also proving to be effective in cultivating empathy and compassion for better team work.

Vijetha Sanjay Mysoremutt

Vijetha has a natural ability in motivating people to spend time with nature, and also conducting team-building workshops. Her innate ability allows her to effortlessly facilitate exploration of nature for both children and those young at heart, fostering learning and discovery along the way. Over the past decade, she has introduced a lot of children to forests and nature events. And many adults including some elderly too have joined and enjoyed her forest walks. She has taken them around on various trails, also encouraging them to explore the limitations we have imposed on our physical body, in terms of improved flexibility and mind-body coordination. She also undertakes hands-on science workshops for private as well as government school children and the kids absolutely love it!Her work is based on her deep learnings and experiences, at various alternative spaces. Currently she is facilitating events with Suyatri (suyatri.com) and Vrikshalaya (foundnature.org).

Last year’s memories…

A journey entry – Majakali experience of 2023

Instagram – Making a Rhododendron Cookie

Instagram – Going back in time to making of rice

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