The southern coastline of Sri Lanka is home to some of the most pristine beaches, UNESCO world heritage sites as well as plenty of artistic boutique hotels and villas.
If you are a traveller who seeks authentic experience in a location that draws inspiration from the region, Ahangama is the place for you. Combined with a surfing – friendly community, Ahangama, in my opinion, is now budding to be the new attraction in the South of Sri Lanka.
Located away from the sandy bays and on the Goviyapana river, is a ravishing island known as Thalduwa Island – a sanatorium to mangrove, wildlife and a collection of four Dutch colonial villas.
Exiting from the Southern Highway and drive down the Galle – Hambantota (A002) road till you reach Thalduwa Road. About 2 kilometres into the Thalduwa Road, you will see a small path that will lead you the collection at Thalduwa Island Villas.
Thalduwa Island villas consist of four different villas namely, Karmel Villa, Sisila Villa, Mr T Villa, and Vador Villa. Each villa is inspired by different cultural elements of both the eastern and the western world. Sisila Villa – the largest villa in the collection, reflects modern architectural elements combined with traditional Sri Lankan elements.
Each room at Karmel Villa is outfitted with either a single or a double bed, a desk, a closet, a large mirror, attached bathrooms and of course a signature style bathtub. The bathtubs are evidently inspired by medieval Sri Lanka and it reminded me of the folklore that described the luxurious baths infused with sandalwood and various other exotic ingredients taken by the ancient kings and queens. Although I must say, for me sleeping next to a bathtub was a little bit eerie.
The main living room is equipped with a large TV and a DVD Player as well as a large comfy couch that can easily accommodate about 02 – 06 people easily. The kitchenette is also located right at the corner of the living area and it is well equipped with a fully functioning refrigerator and a stove. If you wish to cook a meal or even make some snacks, you will find all the equipment needed, except for the ingredients.
Karmel Villa which I stayed in, has altogether five rooms out of which two are located facing the mangroves of Goviyapana river. As you enter into this villa, you will be transported to a place where traditional architecture seamlessly blended in with the western culture. The Pavilion which can also be transformed into a dining place is located right by the pool and adjoining it is a wooden deck hidden that will let you enjoy unprecedented beauty of the Goviyapana river.
The pool is in the perfect size for a private villa. The water does not contain a lot of chlorine which is beneficial for your skin. One thing we noticed about the pool is that during the day, the water absorbs the heat and emits it during the night, making the pool slightly warm.
One of the important things that I noticed in this living area is the large statue of Lord Buddha. It’s important to note that although these properties are owned by non-Sri Lankans, their respect and love for the Sri Lankan culture were well reflected in each villa. If you stay at Sisila Villa, you will also notice the different retro-style posters that will surely be nostalgic.
Without a doubt, the chef at Thalduwa Island Villa knows how to impress their guests with a gastronomical feast. For lunch, we had Paratha with spicy chicken curry and noodles. The paratha was soft and it paired well with the spiciness of the chicken curry. The noodles were flavoursome and had generous portions of chicken pieces mixed. For dinner, we opted for chicken shawarma accompanied with french fries and a fresh garden salad. It was a dish that combined all the right Mediterranean flavours.
The most popular activity in Thalduwa is paddleboarding on Goviyapana river. In my opinion, it’s the best way to explore Thalduwa island and experience the serene beauty of it. If you wish to participate in a yoga session, the staff can arrange you one upon your request. You can simply paddleboard it to the nearby location for Yoga and paddle your way back to the villa. The staff at Thalduwa Island Villas is very helpful and attentive to your needs.
Visit their website to know more about other sites and places you can visit in the vicinity. What are your thoughts about this gorgeous collection of villas? Let me know in the comments below.