Many things have already been said about this friendly villa at The Mangroves. We, a family ranging from 85 years to 7 months, can all only agree: this is a gem indeed!
The house has a special atmosphere, which made us feel at home immediately and more that happy to be able to stay for 16 days.
Everyone had their own highlight: Grandpa appreciated the speed of the internet, Grandma adored the endless stretches of pristine beach (and eventually she found the perfect spot to "bathe" in the sea as waves tend to be strong), husband enjoyed the great music collection inclined toward "world music" with some African influence, me myself the spiritual feel of paddling along The Mangroves at 6 AM with the eagles sitting vigilantly on top of the palm trees and small fish jumping, brother the ease with which to travel from the Mangroves to other places, either by tuk-tuk or taxi to explore other cities (i.e.Hikkaduwa, Ambalangoda), girlfriend the ingenious structure of the showers, and baby girl the intelligence of the owner who added a small gutter to the veranda as to keep it cool so she could happily practice to crawl, as well as the warmth and friendliness of the caretaker Wasantha who did everything imaginable to cheer her up, be it to chop down a coconut or give her a special head massage.
So as you can see: this place is really suitable for everyone!
this was the first stop of our travels around Sri lanka, with a lovely warm welcome.
we had a incredible host, which we didn't expect who catered to our every need.
you give the family who live in a building outside money for breakfast, lunch and dinner and they prepare all the meals for you, plus provide coffee.
we experienced our first taste of amazing Sri Lankan food, and it was delicious.
we were also taken out on a boat, to a beach, got shown animals and the sunset.
we had a amazing time to get use to the heat here, and it truly is a perfect start to your holidays.
ALL credit goes to the family who cook and care for you whilst you are there.
Everything this place has to offer was good. They have a kayak and a small boat that can fit around 4 people. When you step inside this place, you will go back in time. Its an "Old Colonial" type setting. They do have hot water and very clean bathrooms. The only downside was the caretaker was a little rude.
Knowing nothing about where to stay in Sri Lanka, choosing The Mangroves was sheer potluck- of course it looked idyllic but you can't always go by the photos. It is idyllic and the photos do do it justice and we had a wonderful two weeks enjoying the beautiful views, messing about in boats, walking to the totally unspoilt beach and watching the sun set over the Indian Ocean, lying in bed watching the monkeys and chipmunks in the trees outside the window, tuk tuk rides to Bentota and just generally lazing around enjoying the fantastic weather.
The house itself is very well equipped and comfortable, set well back from the road and very secluded. The star of the show however, as many others have already said, is Wasantha, the perfect host. After an initial wariness on both sides,we soon got to know and understand each other and communication was not really a problem. With kindness and humour he looked after us so well, washing our clothes, ordering tuk tuks and taxis, advising us on where to go and cooking the most divine meals three times a day. He was always there when you needed him but was never intrusive.
Thank you Sumudu for your speedy replies to my emails and thank you and Wasantha for a truly wonderful and memorable holiday.
Superb location for a peaceful gathering. Big rooms, but 2 rooms had to share a washroom. Better to have small pedestal fans, than the industrial fans. Caretaker "Wasantha" was giving us a great service. Canoeing in the bay was super fun. Will surely visit again.