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UGA Chena Huts, Yala [Sri Lanka]


Overlooking a beach where sea-turtles come to lay eggs by moonlight and elephants wander down from the nearby jungle to play in the surf, Chena Huts is fringed on one landward side by tropical jungle and on the other by a saline lake where ibises, painted storks and even flamingos may be seen, wading in the shallows.

Surrounded by unspoilt wilderness, Chena Huts is well off the beaten track, lying at the end of a specially-build road that connects with the main Tissamaharama-Yala highway a few minutes from the Yala park entrance.


To intensify the wilderness experience, the spacious 7acre property accommodates only fourteen 71m2 climate-controlled guest cabins. Exteriors, featuring design cues from the vernacular architecture of the region, are designed to harmonize with the jungle environment and the interiors gently emphasise the ‘safari’ theme, with log furniture, African-style directors’ chairs and rustic motifs that belie the ultra-modern comfort and convenience within.

Each of these well-appointed cabins contains of a living area, bedroom, en suite bathroom and shaded outdoor deck with built-in 5m plunge pool. All are equipped with variable-intensity central lighting systems, 42” LED TV, mini-bar and facilities for making tea and coffee. The luxurious bathrooms feature free-standing bathtubs and His and Hers vanity consoles.


Taking its name from the nearby reefs and lighthouse, famed in seafaring history and lore, the Basses restaurant is decorated to an appropriately nautical theme and features urbane fine dining in an spectacularly out-of-the-way location.

Guest can also choose to take their meals under the stars or by the beach near a bonfire. With a captivating beach front and an enchanting lagoon bordering the property, Chena Huts has plenty of unique locations to dine in private.


The guests can choose to take a swim in the 200m2 swimming pool with poolside bar (concealed behind a waterfall) or take a massage in the spa.

Excurions: Below stated excurions are possible from Chena Huts:

  • Yala National Park: Ruhuna National Park, familiarly known as Yala, is the largest and oldest of a chain of six national parks and three sanctuaries in the vicinity, and by far the richest in biodiversity, boasting 44 different resident mammal species and one of the highest leopard population densities in the world. There are also dozens of reptile species including turtles, crocodiles, flying snakes and elegant fan-throated lizards. As for birds, Yala has no less than 215 resident and migrant species, of which the flamboyant peacock is one of the most common.
  • Whale and Dolphin Watching: An excurions to the Great and Little Basses reefs (best reached via Mirissa), off which blue and humpback whales congregate and dolphins frolic, and where the wrecks of Portuguese treasure-galleons lie scattered across the seafloor.
  • Kataragama: An ancient forest shrine on the edge of Yala, sacred to a local deity often identified with the Hindu god Murugan, that attracts tens of thousands of Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims during the July-August festival season.
  • Bundala National Park: Another sanctuary whose jungles and wetlands attract as many bird species as Yala does, and where the remains of Homo erectus communities half a million years old or more can be found among the coastal dunes.


Address : Palatupana Yala, SRI LANKA

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