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“For a day out and nature photography” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Owinka Lake Resort

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Owinka Lake Resort
Kawatayagoda Road, Abayawatta | Gonaduwa, Wadduwa, Sri Lanka   |  
Hotel amenities
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“For a day out and nature photography”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2013

Located in a beautiful place near Bolgoda lake. 1 hour drive from Colombo plus a boat ride if you wish to get closest way to the hotel. Open dinning area plus separated rooms so you can have more privacy than a big hotel. Very good place if you like water sports like Kayaking or Boat riding.

Food is not that special, ample space if you on a group travel and want to play any group sport. Average swimming pool but nothing to blame on it. I have seen lots of butterflies so must stay place to a nature photographer.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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22 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    5
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    4
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (5)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Hobart, Australia
Top Contributor
251 reviews 251 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 60 cities Reviews in 60 cities
142 helpful votes 142 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

Stayed here for 2 nights as part of a tour. Located on the edge of Lake Bogoda each bungalow is spacious and comfortable. On arrival we were presented with a hand made flower necklace and a cool drink in a coconut. We were escorted to our bungalow - each of which is named after local flora. AC in the bedrooms and a fan in the lounge area. Mosquito nets and coils provided. Bathroom was adequate but hot water is limited. Tea and coffee making facilities were provided in the room. Access to a balcony overlooking the gardens.
The staff are all very helpful and we discovered that they are not formally trained but are local villagers. The management pride themselves on providing local employment and on the job training. I have to say that many were better than trained staff I have encountered in other establishments. We were given the option of having our room cleaned and fresh towels if we wanted them but as it was only a 2 night stay many opted not to have their bungalows services - however it was personal choice. Laundry services are provided.
The hotel is far away from the closest village so meals are taken in house. We were offered a good selection of food for dinner on the first night and there was something to satisfy every palate. Try the local lobster - reasonably priced and very tasty. The second night we were offered a BBQ which was taken up by most people on our tour and considered good value for money. Breakfast was a mix of buffet and made-to-order omelettes for those who wanted them. It was basic but filling. Alcohol wise they only serve beer but have no objections if you BYO and just buy mixers.
We were taken for a boat ride on the lake and shown the local flora and fauna, were invited to plant seedlings in their organic garden ready for the next vegetable harvest and had a sunset yoga session by the lakeside - all very enjoyable and relaxing.
One of our group had her birthday while we were there and the hotel staff cooked a cake and gave her a gift. Prior to our departure we were all presented with a photo montage of our stay which was a lovely touch.
This place is not for everyone but if you are looking for a quiet, peaceful lakeside location with friendly staff then I can highly recommend it.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Lorn, Australia
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

Stayed here for 2 nights as part of a group tour. It is miles from anywhere so it is very quiet but it also means that you must eat at the hotel and your are stuck there. The first night we were only offered the choice of fish curry or chicken curry. Most of the group found the food too spicy to eat, the only edible thing was the rice. The only alcohol available was canned beer. The room was unclean and the sheets were very wrinkled and not very clean, and looked as if they had been slept in by others.
Woke up in the morning to find the biggest cockroach I had ever seen sitting in a glass. The two women next door came in and said they could not sleep because there was a rat in their room. They were also kept awake because the TV in the open air restaurant was on all night. Breakfast was very mediocre and served in the open air with no covering to keep off the flies. A toaster was not supplied so it was bread for breakfast. the TV was still on a local station, so I took the remote and turned it down as it was only being watched by the 7 or 8 male staff who just creepily stood around alternately watching us or the TV.
There was a pool but no pool attendant or towels. Food and drink were not permitted around the pool, and women were expected to wear bathing caps (!). There was no pool furniture to sit on. Given this was the ONLY activity available it was ridiculous. We were told that crocodiles had been spotted (!) and that we could not use the kayaks or bikes or go for a walk.
When our group came back from sightseeing at 6.30pm, our rooms had not been cleaned. The rubbish had not been removed, no clean towels supplied and the beds unmade. When I questioned the manager he told me that no one had asked for the rooms to be cleaned! I told him that it is taken as a matter of course that rooms are cleaned when guests are out. He then argued (!) with me, saying that staff are not permitted in rooms without permission. If he had asked us before we went out if we wanted or rooms cleaned we would have all said yest. No wonder there are giant cockroaches everywhere!
That night, I had a closer look at the mosquito nets over the bed (strangely, my bed had 2 nets over the 1 bed) I realised that what I thought was thick dust was actually some sort of excrement, too large for insect, more rat size. That night, I realised that next door's rat had decided to visit me and that's where all the pooh came from.
The next morning at breakfast, I noticed that the bread had some small pieces of orange stuff on them. I thought it may have been some sort of natural insecticide due to the flies. On closer inspection, I realised it was carrot and I thought maybe it was to keep the bread fresh. When I asked I was told that it was a garnish! Garish more like! Again, the TV was blaring away for the amusement only of the staff. This time I turned it down and took the remote. The manager should ensure that his staff are looking after guests not watching TV.
Despite the numerous staff, very little was done. The 'resort' needs a complete overhaul. Unfortunately, the manager seems unable to provide the necessary leadership skills. When I pointed out the piles of animal faeces on my net and directly above my face when sleeping. He just smiled and said he would get it clean. No apologies or embarrassment.
I could not recommend this place at all. I will be recommending that the Tour Group no longer stay here as there was nothing to do and the service was non-existent.

Room Tip: Choose another hotel
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
colombo
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

Distance From Colombo : 1 hour drive
Price : You will be amazed :) its really good deal..

Rooms : Rooms are really Spacious and the interior design was cool. They have used wood as their theme and it brings a nice look to the room. TV was working fine after some time.

Food : You should use the buffet rather than ordering it and having it in your room. Buffet is pretty tasty and they have a variety of Sri Lankan dishes.

Pool : They have a really clean pool. Not so big but its nice.

Service : For me, until the moment I left the service was awesome. Really friendly staff.

Day Outs As Groups: Gives awesome deals for day outs. Have a ground of their own, can arrange a DJ outside (no one complains) and we can use the pool too.

Room Tip: Rooms near the lake have a better view
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northland
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 59 cities Reviews in 59 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2012

We stayed here for two nights as part of a two week Peregrine tour of Sri Lanka and we enjoyed it very much. It is unusual and perhaps not for everyone. We found the staff very helpful and welcoming and the food was pretty good too. Try their local lobsters! The resort is set on the edge of a lake (Bolgoda I think). They will take you out on the lake if you ask) and it is all quite picturesque. Do not expect luxury but the two bedroomed houses are very spacious and come with large comfy beds ( kings?) with mosquito nets plus a lounge area and big bathroom. I don't think you could get to this place without your own transport or as part of a tour as it seemed to be in the middle of nowhere, but this is part of its charm. Yes we saw some squirrels and a few bugs but no spiders or snakes!. The laundry even came back before our departure. We recommend Owinka.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colombo
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2012

I went Owinka with my girlfriend..it took less than an hour to reach this place thanks to Galle highway..road to Owinka from the main road is a gravel road which ideally suits with eco tourism concept..when i reach their staff greeting and introduction was very good..
Then went in to cabanas.,cabanas were spacious and really looked value for money..and the washroom was also clean...cabanas all consist of all the facilities where an Obne star hotel should have..
regarding the staff..they were really nice and friendly..
food was fine in terms of both the quality and quantity..

Overall summary is that Owinka is good place where you will have value for money

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Australia
Top Contributor
104 reviews 104 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2012

This one tends to sneak up on you and gets better the more hours you spend here. maybe because it was near the end of our tour or maybe it was the outlook across the lake with kayaks and bikes available.
The huts are quite large and roomy although the ply in the bathrooms are showing signs of wear. having the odd squirrel or giant coackroach in your room doesnt actually seem out of place and personally doesnt detract. this is not a place for a princess.
birds, frogs and monkeys abound around the resort and the staff are very friendly. The usual mortein nuking of room before dinner seemed to take care of any mossies, the beds had nets anyway and the numerous geckos probably ate the rest.
i really enjoyed this place.

Room Tip: Iddha room overlooks the lake
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Owinka Lake Resort

Address: Kawatayagoda Road, Abayawatta | Gonaduwa, Wadduwa, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Wadduwa
Amenities:
Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 11 Specialty Lodging in Wadduwa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Be cocooned in a world of pure natural beauty mingled with traditional village life in a backdrop of a vast expanse of shimmering waters of the picturesque Bolgoda Lake, the largest natural fresh water lake in Sri Lanka. A lake system made up of two interconnected lakes and their waterways, Bolgoda Lake and its environs natures an eco-system rich in bio diversity with mangroves, surroundings.Owinka Lake Resort in Gonadua is located in unspoiled and tropical atmosphere with the blessings of river, Bolgoda. 75 Km from the Colombo International Airport and only 1 hours drive from Colombo to this comfort and relaxing resort. ... more   less 
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