- Close to Yala National Park
- Great wildlife, possible leopard sightings
- Quiet property with spacious guest cabins
- Lots of exciting day trips
Chena Huts is a luxury boutique resort located right in the very south of Sri Lanka. Not only is it a stone’s throw from the shores of the Indian Ocean, it’s also conveniently close to Yala National Park, the country’s second largest and most popular wildlife-viewing destination. Developed by Uga Escapes, a portfolio known for its luxurious and eco-friendly properties, Chena Huts resembles on first glance the rustic safari lodges commonly seen throughout Africa. However, it doesn’t take long to realise that the lodges are in fact upmarket in their design and offering. The property derives its understated name from the traditional farmers' practice of clearing small plots of land, or ‘chena’, and sleeping beside the growing crops in basic huts to prevent hungry elephants from eating them.
The 14 ‘huts’, or guest cabins, are spacious and complete with modern amenities. Spread out over seven acres, they’re designed to blend in with their natural surroundings. While the cabins are immediately emcompassed by an abundance of forest vegetation, the property as a whole is partly surrounded by a peaceful beach and a pristine lagoon. Each cabin has a living area, bedroom and en-suite bathroom with freestanding bathtub and twin vanity units, as well as a shaded outdoor deck with a private plunge pool. Tea and coffee making facilities are provided, as are a 42” LED TV and a minibar. Wooden decor and log furniture give the accommodation a natural feel.
Meals are served at the Basses Restaurant and Bar, or there are numerous options for private dining, such as eating out under the stars or beside the bonfire. The restaurant itself has a pleasant nautical theme and offers a range of delicious international dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Other on-site facilities include a spa offering a broad range of indulgent treatments and an outdoor pool with a pool bar concealed by a pretty waterfall.
Day trips to the Yala National Park, with its abundance of natural wildlife and many diverse landscapes, can be arranged. The park is known for having the highest leopard population density anywhere in the world and for being an important conservation hub. Other popular activities include whale-watching expeditions from the coastal town of Mirissa and visits to Kataragama, an ancient shrine of great local importance that attracts many Buddhist and Hindu pilgrims.
Chena Huts welcomes children, and while there may not be much in the way of child-oriented facilities or activities, the communal pool will certainly keep children happy and there’s plenty to see in the surrounding area. Parents should note that the pool is unfenced and children must remain under adult supervision at all times.
- Delightful jungle and beach chalets
- Adjacent to Yala National Park
- Great for animal lovers
- Tented multi-day safari adventure
- Game drives, abundant leopard population
- Sloth bears, elephant, water buffalo, jackals
- Nature walks, bird watching, cookery classes
Dear Lisa. On behalf of the three generations of the Rowland family. Thank you, so much, for organising our wonderful holiday to Botswana and the Victoria Falls. The trip of a lifetime. The week mobile camping in the bush, with our guide Nandos and his crew was a fantastic adventure. How they manage to cook such wonderful food on an open fire is amazing. The sites were constantly visited by monkeys and once by elephants. We were even lucky enough to see two packs of wild dogs, once with a kill. Waterberry Lodge on the Zambezi River is a wonderfully tranquil place. Ideal to relax after the adventures of our safari and visiting Victoria Falls. Very many thanks once again
Godfrey R reviewing Private Mobile Family Safari in Botswana on 25 September 2023
We had a great time - even with the flight between Governors and the coast being two flights and a car! We also experienced a power cut At Nairobi airport on the way home so 2+ hours late taking off. Governors. Wonderful people and dealt with the flight delay very well - taking us back and letting us know that we could stay there if the flight was delayed overnight. The game drives were excellent and our guide (Erick) obviously very experienced and managed to find all the key animals - no rhino in that part of the Masai Mara but everything else in abundance - never seen so many herbivores (many many elephants as well as all the others) as well as two prides of lions. Could not have asked for more. The ‘tent’ was excellent and comfortable and well serviced. The only ‘complaint’ would be that the food - especially dinner - could be improved (I think we got a bit bored of soup as a starter for every meal bar one) and the main courses were not at the same level as Kinondo Kwetu and while all were explained there was no choice offered. The breakfasts were just what was needed after an early game drive. Kinondo Kwetu. What a great location and the welcome when we arrived at just gone 11.00pm was better than you could have ever thought possible - they we’re disappointed that we did not at that time want the full dinner experience! The rooms we’re comfortable. The food was excellent but again no choice was offered - other than for allergy reasons (which we do not have). May be some choice would be nice. Having said that the food we did have was excellent as were the wines (albeit a short list!) and other drinks. There were (as you know) lots of facilities/sports options - but we spent our time relaxing which was exactly what we needed and there were lots of places to do that. Overall. We would go back to both places - perhaps a few more nights at Kinondo Kwetu next time but 3 nights at Governors was perfect for us. Thank you for organising and recommending both places. That you and your colleague for trying to find out about the plane (flat tyre) but communication by the flight company left a lot to be desired (Governors were furious that they were not told and had taken us to the airstrip). Phil
Philip R reviewing Masai Mara Safari & Kenya Beach on 01 September 2023
It was certainly a holiday of a lifetime for us and we loved every minute!! The standard and location of each accommodation was excellent, as was the variety of each different accommodation type. Our schedule was perfect and we managed to achieve everything on our to-do task list. Your documents were also really helpful, as were the driving directions. We all thank you for making this such a wonderful holiday. Happy to leave a review publicly if you point me the right way. Best Steve
Stephen H reviewing Classic Garden Route & Eastern Cape Safari on 01 September 2023