Villa | 5 bedrooms | sleeps 11
From your own little rocky hillock just inland from Koggala, soak up the serenity of this wonderful jungly location as monkeys swing overhead and birds twitter loudly in the trees. Moss-encrusted boulders, fern-covered rocks and mature hardwood trees envelope the house and give it a woodland feel. The garden covers more than two acres and, apart from an expansive front lawn shaded by a giant jackfruit tree, much of it runs wild. Monkeys swinging through the trees, squirrels scampering across the lawn and the slothful stepping of the resident monitor lizard provide entertainment as you relax in the comfy chairs on the villa’s airy front veranda. Just around the corner is an inviting turquoise swimming pool built into the rocky hillside for lazing under a hot tropical sun.
Antique furniture infuses the villa with character whilst its design reflects the Dutch in Ceylon; tall arched doorways, pillared columns, wide wraparound verandas and high ceilings feature throughout. The villa has five double bedrooms; two on the ground floor and three on the first floor that lead off from a wraparound balcony enhanced by hidden nooks for curling up and reading. On the ground floor is also a large open-plan living and dining area that spills onto the front veranda, and a small air-conditioned TV room that’s home to a wide-screen TV and DVD player (there’s also an iPod dock in the living room).
Pooja Kanda is fully serviced by a small staff team who clean and tidy. The cook will make breakfast and any other meal on request, although the kitchen is equipped with everything for self-catering and the staff can shop for you if required (provisions on guest account).
Pooja Kanda’s hilltop location is completely private, however its ambient village setting means that local sounds drift softly up on the breeze; listen out for the melody of the bread van, for the cries of the fish sellers or of the laughter of children playing nearby. Better still, wander down the driveway to experience it with your eyes as well as your ears, or travel to the busy coastal village of Habaraduwa to have a nosy around its bustling market (Wednesdays).
|Size||Sleeps up to 11, 5 bedrooms|
|Access||Car not necessary|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages, Suitable for people with restricted mobility|
|Notes||No pets allowed, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Luxuries||Private indoor pool|
|Pool||Private indoor pool|
|General||Air conditioning, TV, Wi-Fi available|
|Rooms||5 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms of which 6 Family bathrooms|
|Furniture||Double beds (5)|
|Outdoors||Private indoor pool|
The Sri Lanka Southern Coast region
Stretching between Galle and Hambantota, the south coast is undoubtedly one of the most popular destinations in Sri Lanka. Characterised by historically significant fortified towns, numerous picture-perfect palm-fringed beaches, a sultry turquoise sea, swathes of iridescent green paddy fields fringed by lush green jungle, ancient Buddhist temples, expansive waterways, nature-filled rainforests and tea-carpeted hills it offers enough variety to be a destination in itself; fabulous for families, groups and couples alike. Galle is one of the region's most significant attractions for its sixteenth century Dutch fort filled with an evocatively rich collection of buildings, boutiques, museums and luxury digs that hug a peninsular to the south of town. Galle's popular beaches are better-facilitated, more developed and safer for swimming than those in and around Tangalle, but the further you travel east the more expansive, deserted and nature-filled they become. Surfing, snorkelling, diving, whale watching, sailing, fishing and kayaking can all be done along this magnificent stretch of coastline as well as cycling, walking and trying your hand at Sri Lankan cookery. Inland, the scene varies as the westerly wet zone's lush jungle interior gives way to the arid dry zone plains a little beyond Tangalle. Taking off by bicycle is often the best way to explore the hills, plains, sanctuaries and jungle whilst a boat is a must to navigate the scenic lakes and rivers that wind in between. Some of Sri Lanka's most popular national parks – Uda Walawe for elephants and Yala for leopards and bears – as well as a trio of its most accessible rainforests – Sinharaja, Kottawa and Kanneliya - are easily visited on a day or overnight trip from anywhere along the south coast.
With its long stretch of golden beach, meandering lagoon inland, fascinating folk museum and famous airfield, Koggala is a great little destination southeast of Galle. The golden sands of the three kilometre beach stretch from Habaraduwa – famed for its turtle-hatchery - to Kathaluwa and sees big hotels standing shoulder to shoulder along the sand. Waves roll onto the beach and rock pools outside of the Fortress Hotel offer not only calm bathing spots but also opportunities to see stilt fishermen hard at work. Just inland from Koggala is an expansive lake where the Sri Lankan Air Taxi lands. Emerging from beneath encroaching jungle that spills onto the meandering expanse of still water, the Koggala Lake is a haven for wildlife lovers as its many islands are populated by a wide variety of exotic birds. Fishermen traverse the still water of the lagoon leaving ripples in their wake as they hunt for fish, crabs and prawns that are famously served up in restaurants all along the south coast. Spice islands and mystical temples also scatter the lake and an early morning or evening punt atop the river in a traditional fishing catamaran is the best way to appreciate this quietly spoken scene. Madul Doova, one of the islands in the lake, was the subject of a book written by the late Martin Wickramasinghe, a lauded local author. His home in Koggala is now a folk museum that charts the fascinating story of his life and times. Koggala's restaurants tend to centre on the beach hotels, and there are a number of ATMs scattered around town.
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