Hill Country, Sri Lanka

Goatfell

Rates per night from$385.00

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 60 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (USD385.00), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

Style

The perfect brew

Setting

Tea time, all the time

With its refined Colonial styling, a cool climate and tea galore, Goatfell could easily make you think of England. That is, until you survey the cinematic hill-country surroundings and taste the chef’s flavoursome rice and curries. This snug-as-a-bug bungalow combines historic character with contemporary comfort: the butler service, relaxed rooms and thoughtful touches will have you feeling right at home. And beyond the boutique bedrooms, Nuwara Eliya’s antiquated charms and the expansive emerald scenery of the working tea estate beckon.

Smith Extra

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A cookery demonstration for two

Facilities

Photos Goatfell facilities

Need to know

Rooms

Four rooms.

Check–Out

Noon; earliest check-in, 2pm. Both are flexible, subject to availability and a charge: the cost of a full night for check-in before 2pm; 50 per cent of one night for check-out by 6pm; a full night for check-out after 6pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $385.00, excluding tax at 30.08 per cent.

More details

Make yourselves at home: the all-inclusive rates usually include three meals a day, plus tea and coffee, soft drinks and alcohol.

At the hotel

Peaceful grounds; cosy lounge; free WiFi throughout. In rooms: black-out curtains, free bottled water, kettle, tea- and coffee-making kit.

Our favourite rooms

Light and airy Ragala stole our heart, thanks to its seclusion, its views of the garden and the estate, and its super-relaxing feel. Cosy Kandapola is also rather lovely, opening directly onto the lawn and infinity swimming pool via a set of French windows.

Poolside

The view-toting alfresco pool surveys the handsome Hill Country. It’s a restful spot to have a cooling dip (literally: it’s unheated) or soak up the sun in the company of a good book.

Packing tips

Bring warm layers for cool nights and a thirst for tea.

Also

The bungalow is suitable for wheelchair users, and all rooms are equipped with walk-in showers.

Children

Little Smiths are very welcome. A cot (free) for under-2s can be added to rooms; there’s also space for one extra bed for under-15s (but an all-inclusive supplement applies). Babysitting can be arranged with 15 days’ notice ($10 an hour).

Best for

All ages.

Recommended rooms

The twin room can be connected to one of the double rooms to make a family suite.

Activities

There’s a stash of board games and a fleet of bikes for children aged between 10 and 12; toddlers can totter safely across the lawn and in the grounds.

Swimming pool

There’s no lifeguard, so keep a watchful eye on your water-babies while they’re splashing around.

Meals

Little Smiths are welcome in the dining room at all times. The relaxed restaurant is suited to families, but you can also order meals to your room.

Babysitting

Babysitting can be arranged with 15 days’ notice ($10 an hour).

No need to pack

The hotel can provide cots and high chairs.

Food and Drink

Photos Goatfell food and drink

Top Table

Sit outside if the weather permits; inside, if not.

Dress Code

Think: off-duty tea magnate. We’re talking relaxed and refined linen, cashmere and cologne.

Hotel restaurant

This home-style stay has a laid-back dining room styled with rich forest-green hues. Simple wooden tables are clustered around the small space, so you might make friends with fellow diners during your stay. Pick from delicious rice and curry combos or relaxed Western options. Don’t miss hoppers (savoury Sri Lankan pancakes) for breakfast.

Hotel bar

There’s an honesty bar in the lounge; feel free to request drinks in the restaurant, by the pool or in the grounds.

Last orders

There are no set times for meals; just inform staff of your preferences.

Room service

Items from the à la carte menu can be enjoyed in-room.

Location

Photos Goatfell location
Address
Goatfell
Concordia Estate, Goatfell Bungalow
Kandapola
22220
Sri Lanka

You’ll find Goatfell in the leafy village of Kandapola, near Nuwara Eliya, in Sri Lanka’s lusciously green Hill Country.

Planes

Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport is four-and-a-half hours from Nuwara Eliya by car.

Trains

You can catch the train from Colombo to Nanu Oya; it’s an incredibly scenic journey. From the station, it takes about 50 minutes to drive to the hotel.

Automobiles

There’s plenty of onsite parking, but a daily charge applies. The closest town is Nuwara Eliya, a 45-minute drive away.

Other

Arrive in style by catching a seaplane from to Nuwara Eliya’s domestic seaplane airport. It’s just an hour’s drive to Goatfell from there.

Worth getting out of bed for

Culture, adventure and nature await in Sri Lanka’s famous tea country. At the hotel itself, relax in the lounge and go for a stroll in the grounds. Explore the Concordia tea estate, which is basically the hotel’s view-toting backyard; drop by the factory, too. Borrow walking boots and leech socks and go for a ramble around the leafy green surroundings. For a more challenging walk, set aside a day to trek the Horton Plains; Goatfell’s obliging staff can sort out the logistics. Hop on a Hill Country train trip if you can – the route from Nanu Oya to Ella is particularly breathtaking. Don’t miss a trip to the brilliantly odd Gregory’s Lake in Nuwara Eliya, which is as close to a Sri Lankan take on the British seaside as you’ll ever encounter, replete with novelty pedalos, fried-food stands and whinnying horses. The cooler climate here is a real draw for heat-escaping Sri Lankans; you might see winter-weather picnics taking place with blankets and bobble hats galore.

Local restaurants

Rates at the hotel are all-inclusive, so chances are you’ll want to enjoy most of your meals there (the food is great). However, you could also swing by Coffee Bar in the Grand Hotel in Nuwara Eliya for a leisurely brunch. Sample local cuisine at the no-frills De Silva Food Centre on New Bazaar Road in Nuwara Eliya, or enjoy a romantic dinner at Indian Summer. The Hill Club is something of a local institution; find out why at its excellent restaurant.

Local bars

Order pre-dinner drinks at the Hill Club and indulge in a spot of prime people-watching at the bar.

Reviews

Photos Goatfell reviews

Anonymous review

Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this historic hotel in Kandapola and unpacked their orange pekoe tea and hiking gear, a full account of their Sri Lankan break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Goatfell in the Hill Country

Pretend you’re industrious tea-plantation managers at Goatfell: a historic, four-bedroom bungalow set on a leafy-green working tea estate. Thanks to the hotel’s lofty perch – a vertiginous 2,000 metres above sea level, to be precise – you can expect eye-widening views (and the occasional popping ear en route, perhaps). Goatfell wants you to feel at home – and what a home it is: the refined rooms are kitted out with antiques and designer furniture, there are overhead fans and on-loan hot water bottles to ensure you remain at your preferred temperature, and the all-inclusive rates takes the sting out of check-out. Sprawl on your favourite sofa by the crackling fire in the snug-as-a-bug library, stake out a sunlounger by the view-toting pool or linger over delicious meals in the dark-green dining room. This is Sri Lanka at its cosiest.

 

The Guestbook

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