Grade - Medium Class Lodge
As you’d hope from a pioneer in the field of tented safaris, Kulu Safaris have perfected the delicate task of offering guests a truly wild experience in a beautiful location whilst delivering a camp that promises home comforts and great food. The safari staff are very experienced and offer a tailored service so that the game drives can be personalised to your wildlife interests. It also uses the Katagamuwa Entrance that’s slightly less crowded at peak times. Perfect for those looking for a more expert and personal experience. A minimum stay of two nights is highly recommended.
In camp Kulu’s kitchen works hard to produce the superb Sri Lankan cuisine, BBQs and snacks you’ll enjoy throughout your stay. Meals are served outside and each evening the hurricane lamps are lit, tables are arranged under the trees and dinner is served around an atmospheric open fire.
Kulu Safaris all-inclusive so all meals, snacks, drinks (tea/coffee, bottled water, soft drinks, one bottle of wine per couple per night and limited number of beer and local liquors) and two game drives per day at 6am and 3pm when the birds and animals are at their most active. The camp also offers equipment such as kayaks for those interested in seeing the park by water.
Consisting of just five large safari tents that are raised on wooden platforms, each has twin or double beds, luggage rack, mosquito net, torch and umbrella. The private veranda has camp chairs and hammocks. Attached bathrooms have w/c, sink and hot & cold water shower.
Grade - First Class Hotel
Thaulle Resort is perfect for those who prefer a more traditional hotel in a peaceful location, set on its own looking out over stunning Yoda Lake, yet still only 15 minutes from Yala National Park. One of the other main draws is the Ayurvedic Spa that sits slightly away from the hotel and offers a range of individual or more involved treatment plans under the care of the resident Ayurvedic doctor. A great choice if you want visit Yala National Park but enjoy life away from the park.
The Ayurvedic Spa offers a fantastic range of treatments from simple massages to full treatment plans. Other facilities include a large pool, fitness centre and bar. The restaurant looks out over Yoda Lake, pool and orchard and offers both Sri Lankan cuisine and western favourites. It also supports any Ayurvedic treatments with Ayurvedic dishes that are adapted to your dosha type.
All 28 rooms are spacious with large windows that offer views of the garden or lake from the balcony or terrace. All are en-suite with air-conditioning, WiFi, satellite TV, minibar, safe and coffee/tea maker.
Uga Chena Huts
Grade - Deluxe Boutique Hotel
How can somewhere so wild be apparently tamed and tousled into such a sophisticated and stunning eco-resort? As you enjoy an al fresco Michelin star level lunch looking out over a beguiling sea scape of sand, rocks and crashing waves you have to remind yourself that animals use the beach as a thoroughfare and indeed elephants and even leopards have been known to enjoy the pool! Welcome to Uga Chena Huts right beside Yala National Park on Sri Lanka’s jungle clad south coast, which has managed to meld the beauty of this wild place with a hotel that offers luxury and relaxation, but also promises a degree of frisson wondering what you could meet on the raised wooden walkways. A rare joy and true treat, bring your binoculars.
It feels that the hotel’s large outdoor pool is set in its own jungle oasis complete with small waterfall that hides the bar and is ringed by loungers shaded by trees. Next door you’ll find the spa that offers 2 treatment rooms. The Basses restaurant has glass walls that offer uninterrupted views of the wild beach and serves a wide range of beautifully-presented Western and Asian cuisine, as well beach BBQs with bonfire.
The hotel is all-inclusive including two game drives per day, snacks and drinks on game drives, breakfast, lunch and dinner at camp, water, fruit juices, soft drinks, tea / coffee, wine, beer, imported spirits and all park entry fees.
Inspired by a farmer’s tree hut, each is a luxury palm thatched, domed residence that’s reached by the raised wooden walkways that weave through the grounds and keep you at eye level with the beautiful trees and bushes that grow in-between. With just 14 low level huts dotted around the seven acres, privacy is almost guaranteed. All are spacious and beautifully designed so you instantly feel at home. Each has an open plan bathroom with bath and shower, air-conditioning, platform bed, lounge chairs, satellite TV, sound system, coffee machine, Wi-Fi, safe and minibar. The added bonus is that each has a private deck with plunge pool, a welcome spot after a day in Yala.