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“Unspoilt Ulpotha.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ulpotha

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Ulpotha
Ulpotha Village | Embogama, Embogama, Sri Lanka   |  
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15% off room rate
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Embogama
Liverpool, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Unspoilt Ulpotha.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

My two weeks in Ulpoltha were fascinating and enthralling. I went along with my sister, Lorraine, the visiting Yoga teacher.The experience of daily Yoga practise, swimming in the beautiful freshwater lake and the proximity of the wonderful wildlife were all uplifting, transcendental experiences in their own right.
The vegetarian food was delicious and revitalising with new dishes on offer each day.

Our fellow guests were vivacious and great to be around, our leisurely lunches were the scene of many compelling debates.

The innate natural beauty of Ulplotha had both a humbling and stimulating effect in equal measure.

Suzi was the perfect hostess helped to really bring the place alive.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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82 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
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English first
Hat Yai, Songkhla, Thailand
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

Sitting here now in the Chaos of Delhi, Ulpoltha seems like a dream place I once visited. I have been coming to Ulpoltha for the past 7 years, both as a massage therapist and as a Yoga Teacher. I have had the privilege of staying in Ulpotha for the entire season both is Nov-Jan and in June to August. I have seen all the guests come and go and watched people go through their process of transformation and growth. I have also seen people like Harry come and leave early because they could not accept and open to a new way of perceiving this very unique and exceptional place.
Ulpotha is designed on a traditional Sri Lankan village of 2000 years ago. So yes your shower is a beautiful out door experience all made from natural materials and open to the blue sky or star filled nights and is clean unadulterated cold water. If you want a hot wash, there is always a huge copper cauldron warmed by a fire at the Ayurvedic clinic and it is my favorite pleasure of Ulpotha to sit under the stars laddling warm water after 3 or 4 hours of yoga to prepare for sleep. This is not a fancy hotel, it is a beautiful eco retreat in the true sense of the word. Many hotels these day loosely use the word eco retreat because they ask you to turn the lights off or keep your towel for an extra day, where as Ulpoltha is a living example of a place that is deserving of the word. By the shear presence of Ulpotha it encourages village people to hold on to and honor their traditional heritage. The food at Ulpotha is all grown locally by the village people themselves. Even the unique red rice which is fast becoming extinct in other parts of the country, is being grown around Ulpotha and at different times of the year you will see the rice in its different growing phases. The food is prepared with such love and attendance from Bandara and his staff and if culinary is your passion you are always welcome to come into the kitchen and help or just watch the preparation of the varied amounts of traditional foods. Far from being repetitive or monotonous every dish is prepared with exotic traditional spices, greens and things you may never have heard of such as lotus seeds, fresh greens, moringa and jack fruit curries. The food is authentic and healthy, so for those whose taste buds have forgotten what real food taste like they may come to appreciate the simplicity of juice from a coconut, a fresh slice of papaya, along with all the other exotic dishes..enough to fill a whole cookbook which you can view before deciding if Ulpotha is the place for you. It is a yoga retreat in the true sense of the word, Yoga means to unite and in our western over civilized, over processed and over stimulated lives, to take the opportunity to come and rest your exhausted mind, body and spirit and be enchanted by nature and the natural world. Come like a child and if you find a frog sharing your bathroom, celebrate and check him out...how amazing. And remember that like everything this too shall pass. So for those who come and stay, they reap the full gifts of what Ulpotha is offering, something different, something unique, something of a once in a life time experience if of course your heart is ready to drink in the magic of a time when the Earth and its people were living in harmony with nature and them selves. Even if it rains...go swim in the tank you are wet already, its warm and its an experience!! There are those who are unhappy within themselves and no amount of external perfection will make them happy. They will always find fault because they are not happy. It is an intimate retreat catering to small groups so the people you meet you can stay connected to long after the holiday ends. Like everything in life, what you put into it is what you get out of it! Ulpoltha is a place where if you sit and listen and just allow your self to be, you can have an experience of that place inside that is and always has been peaceful and content. This is the true practice of yoga. I personally can't wait for my return to that Garden of Eden and all the beautiful village people who have become my friends and family.
ONE LOVE
Malaika

Room Tip: Prepare yourself for going by bringing your torch and head lamp and a commitment to following the tr...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

I have just returned from my second trip to Ulpotha and my stay was just as fabulous as the first. It really is a special place.
With all the superlatives written here on Trip Advisor my first impression, to be honest was a little underwhelming. I brought my best friend along for my second visit and she reported feeling the same. It appears to be a simple village. I think that's part of the charm. It is truly authentic so there is none of the contrived razzmatazz one sees with other spas and resorts that purport to be all about healing and rejuvenating and lifting your spirits. Here the simplicity, lack of conspicuous consumption and waste, absence of all those things we think are essential for comfort, they help you to see how easy it is to feel fulfilled and content and healthy with less.
The food is heavenly. I'm not a vegetarian and my normal diet is full of booze and all the things we're supposed to avoid. But I honestly never felt hungry and never got bored with the amazing variety... and the weight just fell off me (that'd probably be due to no booze - though if you want to bring your own there are no restrictions)
We had 3 to 4 hours yoga daily, my friend had never done yoga before in her life and she is now a convert! Our yoga teacher was wonderful. The other guests were great company, you can lay about and talk and laugh. Or you can swim, read, snooze on a hammock or get ayurvedic treatments and massages, have a sauna or steam bath in these fabulous little natural huts and giant bamboo steamers! Really, there is no time to get bored. I had fantastic sleep (the best I've ever had) sleeping in the open huts and waking with nature. Within a couple of days I just felt a great weight had lifted off me, a weight I had no idea I was carrying. Your mind, body and spirit will thank you.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2013

There a re not many places on earth that can provide such a sanctuary as Ulpotha. It's a jungle hideaway that's probably the cleanest environment I have ever been in. I can't emphasise enough how freeing it feels to be somewhere without plastic and paper and electricity. The natural setting is stunning but the attention to comfort and beauty is in everything from the food to the beautiful hand painted huts. When the village is lit at night by lamps you thi k you are in a dream. But the best thing is the people. The friendly villagers who made everything work so seamlessly, the lovely therapists and yoga teachers and most of all Suzi who oversees it all with such kindness and grace. Thanks so much to all my fellow travellers who shared my Ulpotha experience with me. I think we all left with a little bit of Ulpotha I our hearts. I shall be back.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Gallen, Switzerland
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

Ulpotha is truly a magical place that we enjoyed so much. It is a place to get away from the real world and to enjoy the serenity and peace of nature. You learn to listen to all the amazing sounds around you and be close to nature, sleeping in an open hut and swimming in the tank. The staff are truly friendly and warm, and you feel right at home within the community and family that is at Ulpotha. You can also enjoy yoga twice daily - we had wonderful lessons with Christophe Cappon - and eat fresh-made, healthy and natural foods with great company.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

I have stayed 2 weeks at Ulpotha. Its amazing, magical and unique place i ever visited. Appreciated the serenity of the place, the energy it had offered and the wonderful villagers who looked after me and cares for all the guests. Have met some very interesting and friendly people. The ayurveda session was amazing and truly rejuvenate me holistically. Thank you to Marion and Steve (therapies) and also to Judith for being patience in showing me some yoga poses that i have never done before! Big thank you to Suzi. Big hugs and kisses to all fellow guest i met you all are wonderful people.

Room Tip: 3 bedded huts has ensuite bathroom/shower
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Amersham, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

I spent a wonderful two weeks under the gentle care of Ulpotha restoring me back to a fitter lighter and more joyful self. The two weeks of yoga,vegetarian food and daily Ayurvedic treatments combined with the natural beauty of the setting are exactly what I would recommend for getting a better balance to your life.
The teachers and therapists are first class and are intuiative in understanding individual requirements - from Lorraine who has inspired me to practise daily yoga on my return to Marian and Steve who as therapists have released deep-seated tensions restoring my muscle flexibility
This is a great place to chill out,do as much or as little as you like and re-connect with nature.
I had great fun sleeping in the lake house and the tree house (woken by an inquisitive primate!)
swimming in the amazing fresh water lake and just reading but more often sleeping on the hammocks. The food is delicious and my group was fun and friendly-Suzi is a great hostess introducing everyone and providing an opportunity for interesting lake side entertainment ( you will discover for yourself!). There's also an interesting vibe from the range of international guests who you quickly get to know
The benefits of this holiday are unusually still with me-I have stepchanged my yoga programme, reduced my alcohol consumption and stopped eating red meat.
Special thanks to the villagers,ayurvedic centre and cooks who make Ulpotha such a unique experience
Apparently the two week Ayurvedic programme is like an annual MOT so most probably I will be drawn to going back next year for another boost of the Ulpotha magic!

Room Tip: I liked the huts overlooking the paddy fields as they are more open to light and with a great view
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.

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Additional Information about Ulpotha

Address: Ulpotha Village | Embogama, Embogama, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Location: Sri Lanka > North Western Province > Embogama
Amenities:
Free Breakfast
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Embogama
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
'The best yoga retreat in the world', according to the Observer, Ulpotha is a beautiful private eco-hideaway open to guests for part of the year; a place of total peace, where you can experience the warm, generous and gentle hospitality Sri Lankans love to offer. This oasis of tranquility is a traditional working village cradled on one side by low mountains and a lotus ringed lake, and on the other by emerald green paddy fields. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ulpotha Hotel Embogama
Ulpotha Spa Embogama
Ulpotha Sri Lanka/Embogama

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