Swimming elephants and a walk with the Vedda tribe – we’re ready for this new eco lodge in Sri Lanka…
At the northwest boundary of Gal Oya National Park is a new high-end eco lodge ready to show you the real Sri Lanka. Gal Oya Lodge, spread across 20 acres of private forest, promises a luxurious stay in the jungle, with strong eco-friendly credentials.
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Eight spacious bungalows sit nestled in the forest canopy, each with its own breathtaking view thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows and private verandas. Each bungalow has a private living room, bedroom with king-size bed, and en-suite bathroom (complete with both indoor and outdoor showers, and ‘his’ and ‘hers’ basins).
Also available is a two-bedroom villa perched at the highest point at Gal Oya Lodge. A large open-plan living space connects the two bedrooms which each have their own wraparound veranda allowing you to gaze at both sunrise and sunset.
The lodge has its own restaurant and bar, plus a small organic kitchen garden so you could pick your own chillies for dinner! An outdoor swimming pool, set against the backdrop of the low-lying mountains, offers a refreshing spot for a morning dip.
This is where Gal Oya Lodge comes into its own. The owners work with the local Vedda community (the aboriginal people of Sri Lanka) to offer guests unique opportunities, such as walking with the tribal chief to hear more about their way of life. Proceeds are given back to the community through medical and educational schemes.
Being a National Park, this area is a wildlife-lover’s paradise. Guides from Gal Oya can take you on safaris by foot and by boat – the country’s largest lake provides a wonderful vantage point for wildlife spotting, including the sight of swimming elephants!
Alternatively, take a jeep drive through the jungle to the mightly Nigala River which flows under a boulder field.
Recommended for… Wildlife lovers and those interested in the real Sri Lanka
Be aware that… The lodge is in a very beautiful but also very remote location – don’t expect wifi or mobile signal (great for a digital detox!)
- Solar-powered hot-water system
- ‘Grey’ water from the rooms and kitchen used in the gardens
- Anaerobic waste treatment system
- No air-con required as polished concrete floors and high illux roofs provide a naturally cool environment
- Tables and chairs made by local craftspeople
- Produce grown by the lodge, or sourced from small, local farmers
- Medical and educational schemes set-up to help the local Vedda community
For more information, including prices and booking, visit www.galoyalodge.com