If you prefer the Hill Country over Sandy Beaches, you are going to love everything about this place from the very first moment you walk in. Goatfell is a luxurious bungalow perched on a hilltop in Kandalapola, Sri Lanka. It has jaw dropping views across the valley with visibility as far as the Eastern Coast of Sri Lanka on a sunny day with clear skies.
Surrounded by the lush tea bushes of the Concordia Estate, this four-bedroom bungalow has a beautiful sitting area with a cozy fireplace and a beautiful patio that opens on to the lawn overlooking the hills where most meals are being served if the weather gods are kind to you. The Interiors are contemporary and chic yet resonates with the hill country charm.
The bungalow sits at an elevation of some 2000 metres above sea level and climate in Kandapola is warm during the day (22 C) yet cooler at night (10-15 C).
The bungalow is positioned so well on top of the mountains that it allows its guests to witness the most perfect and breathtaking sunrises that you can ever imagine of. If you ever pay a visit this is a MUST and make sure to never miss it. It is all so worth waking up early in the morning.
Goatfell has three individual double bedrooms and one twin bedroom on each corner of the bungalow. Each guestroom has a private furnished terrace with direct garden access and an ensuite bathroom with a bathtub for warm soaks.
The room we stayed at was called Kandapola, and the reason why we picked this room in particular was, it is at the front of the bungalow and opens directly own to the lush green lawn and the infinity swimming pool through a set of French windows.
The room was quite spacious with a beautiful fireplace. There was also a heater inside the room which you need to use at night since it gets quite cold outside. We loved how the hotel turned down the beds at night by keeping a bottle of warm water underneath our quilt on each side of the bed.
Couldn’t have asked for a better service. The service was really great. All staff including the manager was there throughout the three days happily attending to our needs and requests.
The bungalow has a laid-back dining room, styled with rich forest green hues. We mostly dined outside except during dinnertime. The food served at the bungalow is quite delicious and you can pick from rice and curry combos or relaxed western options. Don’t miss out on the ‘Parata’ for dinner and ‘Hoppers’ for breakfast.
As usual breakfast was our favorite meal with a delightful spread of fruit juices, tea/latte, bacon and sausages, cheese omelet’s, homemade croissants and hot hot cinnamon rolls with marmalade, vibrant fruit platters served with pancakes, string hoppers milk rice etc. It was simple the BEST!
They also served us warm lemon cake dusted with icing sugar, warm date cake, and two different types of homemade cookies for high tea on both days. They were absolutely delicious.
A quick dip in the shimmering infinity pool by the edge with jaw dropping views of the mountains is a definite must, given you have got the courage. As the water is going to be freezing cold no matter which time of day it is. We all got it in the pool for a quick dip after an 1.5 hour trek up the hills. It was quite rewarding.
6. Things to do
The cool, fresh mountain climate of Kandapola makes it a superb destination for exploring outdoors.If you happen to enjoy going on treks, then Goatfell has got you covered. They’ve got 4 treks around the bungalow which you can do based on which you prefer. Apart from this you can,
- Visit the Finlay’s Tea Factory (within walking distance) to learn all about the production of world’s favorite brew of Ceylon tea.
- Explore the sights of the colonial-era hill station of Nuwara Eliya
- Visit Horton Plains to peer down from dramatic World’s End and stroll through the reserve’s plains and high-altitude cloud forest.
- Visit to Tothupola Kanda, Sri Lanka’s third-highest mountain, which is a much less visited peak whose path to summit travels up through lichen-clad woodland to reveal panoramic views across Horton Plains.
- Visit the Hakgala Botanical gardens or organize boat ride at Lake Gregory