We took a weekend away to discover animals at the Wilpattu National Park in Sri Lanka and stayed at a nice place, Ulgalla Resort. It was built originally for British dignitaries and the grounds are developed and well kept. There is a large, beautiful pool for the guests. I took this shot at sunset so everyone was back in their rooms getting ready for dinner.
The villas each had a private plunge pool and due to the intense heat during the day, it is almost impossible to stay cool. Even with the air conditioning pumping away inside, it was cooler to just hang out in the water outside. The plunge pools are private and I listened to monkeys and birds in the trees above me.
We didn't spend much time at the resort because we wanted to go on game drives and the park was an hour and 15 minutes drive one way. If you are serious about game drives, I wouldn't recommend staying here but as it is one of the only "luxury" resorts nearby (read: Westernized) and we were thankful for the air conditioning during the hot afternoons.
One night I walked to the main house for dinner (the property is so spread out that people usually ask for golf carts for transport) and toured the organic garden. The layout was creative and the gardener used natural materials to section off the areas for the different plants.
The next post will show some of the amazing animals and birds that we were able to see at Wilpattu (sadly, no leopards). I've noticed that a lot of the landscaping in Sri Lanka (outside of Colombo) centers around a water feature of some kind. This small pool is for wildlife only but we watched the fish, frogs, and birds enjoy it.