Ceylon Tea Trails is probably the most coveted place to stay in Sri Lanka, and a perfect place for history and tea lovers like us. Nestled among the scenic tea-carpeted hills of the Bogawantalawa region, you’ll find five colonial-era tea planter bungalows which have been turned into a private luxury resort.
Each of the historical bungalows has its own distinctive character and offers a boutique luxury experience in Sri Lanka’s Tea Country. Each of the bungalows offers 4 to 6 unique rooms and a dedicated butler, chef, and house staff. Ceylon Tea Trails was the first Relais & Chateaux property in Sri Lanka and remains one of only two in the country.
A stay here is worry and bill free as rates include all meals, most drinks, laundry, taxes, and services. A typical day here includes waking up to a traditional Bed Tea each morning served by the butler, spending the afternoon by the pool or taking a scenic hike, and then finishing the day with canapés and an evening drink by the fire before heading off to a 4-course dinner.
Summerville Bungalow was built in 1923 and offers 4 guest bedrooms, decorated in the style of a country cottage. Summerville is situated high above the Castlereagh Reservoir and offers great views over the water and tea-covered mountains.
This villa feels a bit more secluded since it is on the other side of the lake from the others, but an easily arranged short boat ride can bring visitors back and forth across the lake to visit the tea factory and other bungalows. This bungalow is also the easiest to rent out for a group and is likely a good bet for those seeking peace and quiet. It has a swimming pool, sun deck, summer house, croquet lawn, and gardens.
Castlereagh Bungalow was built in 1925 and offers 5 guest bedrooms, and is a popular guest favourite with its eclectic style. It incorporates colonial elements but feels quite modern at the same time. Nestled in a wooded area, Castlereagh is located on the opposite side of Castlereagh Reservoir from Summerville, and offers great views of the lake.
It has some of the best gardens of all of the bungalows and two summer houses. Castlereagh also offers a swimming pool, croquet lawn, and a library.
Dunkeld Bungalow was built in 1925 and offers 4 guest bedrooms and the detached Owners’ Cottage. This is the most recent bungalow to open at Tea Trails, restored in 2015. Dunkeld is located on the opposite side of the Castlereagh Reservoir from Summerville. It is situated in a position high above the reservoir and offers amazing views over the lake, tea fields of the Dunkeld estate, the Dunkeld Tea Factory, and mountains.
The Owners’ Cottage is located just above the Dunkeld Bungalow that is accessed from a small private path, and is perfect for a romantic honeymoon or private family getaway. Dunkeld offers an amazing infinity-edge swimming pool, hot tub, sun deck, library, and croquet lawn.