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Start your cultural exploration of Sri Lanka with a stay at a refurbished manor house on a coconut estate where you can stretch your legs on a walk around the tropical gardens and recover from jetlag. Make your way to the Cultural Triangle to explore the archeological sites of the Polonnaruwa citadel, climb King Kashyapa’s Lion Rock Fortress in Sigiriya and visit the Dambulla Cave Temples. Travel to Kandy and stopover at a spice and fruit plantation for a walk and a traditional Sri Lankan lunch prepared with fresh produce from the farm. In Kandy, take time to explore the busy street markets and visit the island’s most venerated temple, Temple of the Tooth with a host. Hop on a scenic train to navigate through rolling hills in the Tea Country where you can visit a tea factory with a resident planter and enjoy breathtaking views of the lush landscapes. From the hills make your way towards the South Coast where you can spend time discovering Galle’s rich history and the island’s long-standing relationship with cinnamon.
Cultural tours Sri Lanka (Day 1). Horathapola, a family-owned mansion dating back to the 1920s lies tucked within a vast green coconut belt that stretches up the west coast from Negombo to Puttalam and inland to Kurunegala. Its relative proximity to Colombo International Airport makes it a perfect base for those who want to unwind, slow down and recover after a long flight, or a place to relax before leaving, although Horathapola is well worth at least two nights. The estate is also located en route to the Cultural Triangle.
The main house which is elegantly furnished, lies within a 50 acre coconut plantation. Coconut, rice, cashew nuts, mangoes and other fruits, as well as spices and hardwood trees are all grown on the estate.
An elegant hall greets you upon entrance with beautiful terracotta floors, ceiling beams and furnished with simple, stylish antiques. There are an extensive library and plenty of hidden nooks for those wanting to read a good book or relax in peace and tranquility.
Water Garden Sigiriya located in the historically diverse cultural triangle is a tribute to the ancient water gardens that once occupied the lands surrounding the Sigiriya rock fortress. Designed by renowned
Sri Lankan architect, Channa Daswatte, the boutique hotel has been built with the concept that the majestic Sigiriya rock serves as the background image.
The 30 villas categorized as Standard, Deluxe and Duplex, are scattered across 35 acres amidst greenery and a variety of waterbodies. The reception is an open area furnished with chairs affording an uninterrupted view of the Sigiriya rock. The area is connected to the restaurant and bar through a narrow pathway flanked by two lakes on either side. The twin level bar is located adjacent to the pool, while the restaurant with indoor and outdoor seating is on the furthest corner from the pool.
The grand ancestral home of one of Kandy’s most influential aristocratic families, the Kandy House sits on 6 acres in a quiet village area close to Kandy.
Originally built in 1805, the Kandy House was restored in a style that combines classical Kandyan period architecture with Dutch colonial furnishings and a soft, colorful and elegant finish. Large shady verandas, double-hammocks and tropical lawns encourage one to find a comfortable and quiet corner to relax or read. The ambalama overlooking the paddy fields is perfect for private dining, spa treatments and even yoga sessions.
The Kandy House has 9 luxurious bedrooms categorized into Deluxe and Ultra Rooms, each individually designed and named after butterflies found in Sri Lanka.
Welcome to Ceylon Tea Trails, a range of luxurious planters’ bungalows in Dickoya, found approximately 4,000 feet above sea level in the southern highlands of Sri Lanka’s tea country. Tea Trails comprises five classic colonial bungalows, all of which are Relais & Châteaux bungalows, built for British tea estate managers in the days of the Raj. Each bungalow is different, combining both classical and contemporary styles: the effect is quintessentially luxurious and colonial, a stroll back in time but entirely resplendent in modern amenities. Within the confines of each bungalow guests will find over-sized rooms with four-poster beds, lavish bathrooms and a blazing log fire in the dining and drawing rooms. The meticulously maintained gardens also feature sun-decks and summer houses where traditional English Cream Teas are served by the bungalow’s resident butler. Enjoy reading by the pool, having high tea in the summerhouse or a gin and tonic on the terrace.
The Norwood bungalow, built in 1890 and rebuilt in 1940, is located 4,300ft above sea level and sits at the eastern end of the Bogawantalawa Valley, high-up above Castlereagh Lake. It’s set in a beautiful garden with towering bamboo plants, manicured croquet lawns and a stunning pool. Like all the Tea Trails bungalows, Norwood is intimate with only five large suites. The interior décor is comfortable and airy whilst retaining a traditional feel with unique pieces of colonial architecture.
Located in the heart of Galle Fort, Amangalla’s history dates back to the Dutch period when it was originally built as a quarter for the Dutch commanders. Decades later during the British period, it was transformed into a hotel by the name of ‘New Oriental Hotel’ and served guests for 140 years before coming under the Aman brand.
The hotel cleverly blends in old-world charm with contemporary luxury from the rooms to the swimming pool and ‘the baths’ – a stunning spa complete with a luxury Ayurveda center and marble-walled candlelit hydrotherapy room.
Amangalla has 29 rooms divided into four room types, all of which offer the very best in comfort and style.
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