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Tangalle's coastline, which alternates rocky promontories and long sweeps of pale yellow sand, is what draws many to this large town, and the beautifully, lush region surrounding it. The mild, sunny weather helps too, and there's an important ancient rock temple nearby, and a Turtle Conservation Project and a Bird Sanctuary. So this is a great place to get a taste of many of Sri Lanka's pleasures without having to stray too far from the views, and other relaxing comforts, of your sun lounger. Just remember that the best places to stay in Tangalle are very busy during peak periods, so unless you want to come off season, plan well ahead!
For a beach break
- For top end luxury right on the beach, one of the best places to stay in Tangalle is Amanwella. This resort is all about relaxation, the architecture is elegantly sparse - zen even, the terrace is fanned by palm trees and each of the thirty suites has its own plunge pool. But despite the focus on relaxation there's plenty to do here, from birdwatching to whale watching, to snorkelling, and windsurfing, to fishing and they even run cooking classes.
- Buckingham Place: the name comes from the owner's surname, rather than any suggestion of opulence! In fact these 12 guest lodges are modern and minimalist, with excellent views over the lagoon. Just out of a small fishing village and far from the crowds.
- Maya Old House is a good option for people looking for somewhere remote and unique to stay. It's set in amongst the jungle and the paddy fields, on its own two acre estate and is one of the best places to stay in Tangalle (or even the whole of Sri Lanka) if you want to step back in time to the days of Ceylon. The colonial style building has wide verandahs set around a wonderful courtyard pool, and the guest rooms have 25ft ceilings. They're so charmingly traditional they offer cricket, tai chi and petanque.
Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Tangalle, or contact one of our friendly Gurus for advice. Alternatively widen the net and check out all our recommendations in Sri Lanka.
Best Hotels in Tangalle
Mangrove Beach Cabanas 9 rooms from $51Tangalle
Simple yet chic this unassuming little cluster of wooden cottages has been welcoming guests for years. Ideal for travellers or couples on a budget, seeking some relaxation. There is a popular bar where guests congregate plus a beach restaurant serving tasty Sri Lankan dishes. Great value.Value chic - Private cottage accommodation at an excellent priceFishing - Tangalle is a sleepy fishing village - trips can be arranged in townKayaking - Get on the waters in your very own kayakOn the beach - Located on Tangalle Beach
The Last House 4 rooms from $180Tangalle
Sri Lankan architect, Geoffrey Bawa's final creation The Last House provides an iconic and stylish stay. Think colourful interiors, plenty of antiques, exposed beams and roll-top baths: a perfect mix of old and new. Meals are served al fresco and (bar breakfast) are arranged on request. Superb.Families - Children are well looked after and there is a three bedroom suite ideal for familiesArchitectural - Famed architect Geoffrey Bawa’s final creation - an iconic stayLocal markets - A tuk-tuk tour of the sleepy fishing town of TangalleSwimming Pool - Outdoor poolRecommended by - I Escape, Mr & Mrs Smith
Anantara Tangalle 152 rooms from $227Tangalle
Recently opened this modern wellness resort is ideal for individuals, families or couples seeking relaxation. Private villas allow for ultimate privacy, whilst a popular kids club means grown ups can leave the little ones behind. Dine on Italian dishes at Il Mare or fusion cuisine on the beach.Families - Baby sitting services, two-bed villa accommodation and a kids club they won't want to leaveSpa breaks - Providing ancient, trusted Ayurvedic therapies the wellness centre has a lot to offerCooking classes - Take home some local flavours from Spice SpoonsKids Club - For all ages including teens
Maya Old House 5 rooms from $225Beliatta, Near Tangalle
Restored villa with a central courtyard in its own elegant estate filled with flora and fauna. A retreat for nature lovers, families, or romantics. Contemporary rooms with colonial influences, beautiful verandahs, and surrounding paddy fields. Excellent home cooked food. A lovely relaxing retreat.Sights nearby - Visit the Buddhist Temple and Mulgirigala Rock Temple both just 15 minutes from the hotel.Cooking classes - Learn to cook Sri Lankan style with the hotel chef.Swimming Pool - Outdoor PoolSailing - Can be booked nearby.Recommended by - I Escape, Tablet, Mr & Mrs Smith
Buckingham Place 15 rooms from $278Tangalle (Nettolpitiya)
A newly built and cleverly designed hotel, in spacious grounds brimming with exotic plants. Minimalist guest lodges with stunning views, excellent food and friendly service. A tranquil escape yet close to the beach - a great spot for nature lovers and couples.Romantic Break - A place of tranquility and privacy with gorgeous airy rooms overlooking the surrounding nature.Back to Nature - An abundance of biodiversity with architecture designed to merge living and nature.Sights nearby - Visit the magnificent Mulkirigala Rock Temples in Tangalle.Sailing - Spot sperm whales and dolphins on a boat trip.
Amanwella 30 rooms from $625Tangalle
Top end luxury and serene zen spaces on the edge of a coconut grove overlooking a wonderful beach. Sparing contemporary-chic design and fantastic facilities in this natural location. Sumptious cuisine enjoyed with a lovely sea view. A contemporary beach haven.Beach Life - Sitting on a beautiful private 800m crescent beach- enjoy turtle watching, 'fresh-off-the boat' seafood and golden sands.Back to Nature - Submerge yourself in the lush green environment and observe sea turtles, monkys, birds, lizards and mongooses.Cooking classes - Accompany the hotel's chefs to the early morning fish and spice market, and learn to cook your favourite curry.Sailing - Take a trip on a restored Indonesian fishing boats out to sea to try your luck at whale watching.Recommended by - I Escape, Kiwi Collection, Mr & Mrs Smith, Tablet