I Visit A Famous Neighbor

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March 27, 2018 by kittynh

Naulakha about 1900 - South West View Dummerston, VT

an old postcard. You can LIVE here, not just visit.

As long as I have lived in this part of New England, and especially when I worked in Brattleboro Vermont, I have heard that Rudyard Kipling lived in the town.  Long ago of course!  His home, Naulakha, is privately set back from the road near Brattleboro.


First floor view in winter. And it is darn good.

I always wanted to go visit, but, the home can only be RENTED.  The Landmark Trust USA runs the home as a vacation rental.  This allows the house to be preserved, without needing to turn it into a tourist stop.


One of many beds awaits you and your family or friends. Lots of room!

The trust guide I spoke with mentioned that other historic homes are run as museums, and people visit only once.  These homes are always scrambling for money.


Most hotels do not have as nice bathrooms as this home has, there are three.

The Landmark Trust takes historic homes and makes them into rentals.  You can enjoy the entire Kipling home, for a very modest price.

I was lucky enough to go on the yearly tour where Naulakha is opened to the public.  All the school children in the area tour, and see a wonderful performance featuring “Just So” stories. Thankfully a few adult children are also allowed in to view this home that is almost exactly as the Kiplings left it.


“Mr.Kipling” at his desk, working.  You can work at this desk also. Wifi available.

If you rent the home, you can dine at the same table and chairs where the Kipling family ate.  You can certainly enjoy the same views.


Best of all you can sit and write in the same libraty where Kipling wrote “The Jungle Book.”  While the family only lived there for a few short years, Kipling wrote some of his most endearing and well known works in this delightful house.


That’s the original shower/bath.  The toilets also flush funny, but you can figure it out.


Kipling’s home looks like a ship.  He wanted it to look like a ship.  He saw himself sailing over the mountains of Vermont, writing his books.


The side board, and table and chairs, are all Kiplings.  The carving is from India.  It was a wedding present to the Kiplings. 

There are several people that rent the home, and offer writing workshops, because they find the home inspiring.  If nothing else is so beautiful and peaceful that any writer would find it easy to settle down and just sail over the mountains and create.


So, if you want to visit Vermont, and you have enough friends, it’s as cheap to stay at Naulakha as at the average nice hotel.


Also a full kitchen so you can make meals, but close enough to Brattleboro that you can go shopping and out to eat.  Having finally visited, I have to say I’m thinking of signing up for a writing course just to stay and enjoy exploring the entire property.


You like to read? You can read his books.  Sit on the sofa and read to your heart’s delight.


The best part during my visit is when I noticed a trunk sitting in the dining room.  Another woman asked “Can I touch it?” The guide exclaimed “You can touch EVERYTHING!” That’s when we understood fully, this isn’t a museum, it’s a home.  A home that you are welcome to visit and make your own while you are there.


Touch the trunk.  Open it, look inside!

Did I mention there is a pool table on the top floor?  And a really nice kitchen where you can prepare meals? And the VIEWS?


You can prepare your meals here, the Kipling family had a maid!


Let’s soak in this bathtub, the smallest bathroom…but it will do.

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