Luxury hotel holiday Deer Park Polonnaruwa

Deer park is a charming, characterful hotel which is an ideal base for exploring The Cultural Triangle. This is a tranquil retreat in a jungle setting which allows you to appreciate the lush beauty of the surrounding area. There is an Angsana Spa and a lovely outdoor pool in which to relax after a days sightseeing. This is a comfortable, welcoming property which is especially well placed for exploring the ancient city of Polonnaruwa.
Included in your Expressions holiday
  • Accommodation in a double or twin room on bed and breakfast
  • Scheduled flights with Sri Lankan Airlines
  • Transport by private car with driver-guide
  • Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints
  • Optional room, board and flight upgrades. Details on request

Luxury bespoke holidays and tours to Deer Park Hotel, Polonnaruwa

Deer Park is a comfortable hotel in a beautiful natural location. The delicious cuisine and stunning lakeside scenery make it an idyllic resting spot between exploring the UNESCO world heritage sites and viewing elephants and wildlife at Minneriya National Park.

Facts in brief

Official star rating 3

Location In the countryside, approximately 20 miles from the town of Habarana.

Closest airport Colombo

Distance from airport About 5 hours drive away

Hotel facilities and services

Restaurant, Jungle BBQ, Sandpiper bar, 2 swimming pools, Sun loungers, Deer Park spa, Adventure club, Private dining, Taxi service, Laundry service, WiFi access zone, Adventure Tours by Cervidae Adventure Club.

Land sports

Wildlife Jeep Safari in Minneriya National Park, Elephant back rides, bird-watching, walking and cycling around the ruins at Polonnaruwa.

Out and about nearby

Polonnaruwa, Handicrafts made from aloe, rush & reed, Anuradhapura, Mihintale, Ritigala, Sigiriya Rock Fortess and Dambulla Temple. Elephant gathering around Minneriya September/October.

Holiday price guide Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a Duplex cottage for 7 nights

From about

£1,400

Holiday Code EXH363

The prices displayed here are a guide only. Each holiday price will be tailor-made at the time of booking to reflect all actual costs including up-to-date special offers.

Luxury bespoke holidays and tours to Deer Park Hotel, Polonnaruwa

Rustic charm awaits guests at the Deer Park Hotel, located amongst Sri Lanka’s tropical jungle on what were once the hunting grounds of Polonnaruwa, seat of Sinhalese kings. The Deer Park Hotel’s setting, slightly up from the banks of the Giritale Reservoir, creates peaceful and private surroundings where guests can revel in the nature and wildlife that is all around. Accommodation is provided in 40 cottages, which are furnished with a blend of traditional and contemporary Asian styles and designed to work in harmony with the jungle that surrounds. Most of the cottages benefit from an open-air garden bathroom that allows guests to enjoy the sensation of a shower under the stars. The Deer Park cottages have a charming added feature of a viewing gazebo on stilts - sip your morning cup of Ceylon tea here as you watch the monkeys playing around in the trees above. There are partial views of Giritale Reservoir from some of the bedrooms as well as from the pleasant restaurant and bar. Guests at the Deer Park Hotel can seek out traditional Asian therapies in the Deer Park Spa which has four indoor spa pavilions, to revitalise and pamper. Healthy cuisine is served in the restaurant, reflecting both international and local flavours. Your days can be spent visiting the ancient ruins of Polonnaruwa or sighting wild elephants in Minneriya National Park, returning for a cooling dip in the hotel swimming pool and a lazy hour in the shade. The Deer Park is a comfortable hotel that is ideally placed for exploring Sri Lanka’s fascinating Cultural Triangle, particularly the more eastern UNESCO world heritage sites.

Room descriptions

Deer Park Hotel has 73 cottages, all with twin beds or a double bed (mostly twin beds positioned together), en-suite bathroom with shower and bath, air conditioning and ceiling fan, sitting area, dressing area, satellite TV.

Duplex Cottage double-storey with outdoor bathroom and shower facilities. The upper floor is devoted solely to the bedroom.
Superior Cottage in single-unit blocks or four-unit blocks. Ground floor Cottages feature a living area and outdoor bathroom. An upper storey Cottage in a four-unit block has an indoor shower and a shared balcony.
Deluxe Duplex Cottage ith ground floor living area, dressing area and outdoor bathroom. Choose from a variety of pool, pond or forest views.
Deer Park Cottag includes private gazebo with views through trees to Giritale reservoir

Holiday price guide Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a Duplex cottage for 7 nights

From about

£1,400

Holiday Code EXH363

The prices displayed here are a guide only. Each holiday price will be tailor-made at the time of booking to reflect all actual costs including up-to-date special offers.

Luxury bespoke holidays and tours to Deer Park Hotel, Polonnaruwa

The journey and how you get there

For a holiday to Deer Park Hotel in Sri Lanka, our clients fly to Colombo, usually with Sri Lankan Airways on a direct flight from London Heathrow (or with Emirates from other UK airports via Dubai). This hotel is 4 hours and 30 minutes' drive from Colombo airport and is usually stayed at as part of a tailor-made touring holiday accompanied by a driver-guide.

Additional information

Minimum stays: 3 nights from 24 December to 1 January.

Children: A child up to 5 years of age stays free of charge when using existing bedding and sharing parents' room. A child between the age of 6 and 12 years may be accommodated in an extra bed in parents' room at an extra charge, and will receive 50% discount on meals.

Holiday price guide Sample prices are per person based on two people sharing a Duplex cottage for 7 nights

From about

£1,400

Holiday Code EXH363

The prices displayed here are a guide only. Each holiday price will be tailor-made at the time of booking to reflect all actual costs including up-to-date special offers.

Luxury bespoke holidays and tours to Deer Park Hotel, Polonnaruwa

About Cultural Triangle

An Expressions tailor-made holiday to the Sri Lanka's Cultural Triangle gives visitors the opportunity to experience a melting pot of heritage, culture and wildlife in the central dry, which is home to a wealth of UNESCO world heritage sites and beautiful landscapes, still rich in wildlife and natural habitats. It is essential to visit the Cultural Triangle during a holiday in Sri Lanka. Most visitors spend a day or two visiting the cultural sites as part of a touring holiday around Sri Lanka, yet we think this area is so rich in culture, local life and wildlife that it can also merit a week’s stay, discovering the culture and enjoying the natural environment. The local people here lead a largely agrarian life often centring round rice cultivation. Today’s landscape on these flat, dry, red earth plains is dotted with vast tracts of water - fields of rice paddies and water lilies and the ancient reservoirs known as ‘tanks’ - interspersed with forests and smallholdings, solitary rock mountains, temples and villages. Wild elephants are often sighted inside (and sometimes outside) the national parks, whilst monkeys, swamp hens, cormorants and mynah birds are commonly seen. This area is considered to be the cradle of Sri Lanka’s Buddhist civilisation as we know it today. It is also the epicentre of Sri Lankan Ayurveda, the science centrifugal to a healthy life – if you want to find a really authentic, traditional Ayurvedic doctor, this is the place to be. There is a great range of high-quality hotels in the Cultural Triangle - we have carefully selected hotels throughout the area which we believe to be the best at what they do. They all enjoy tranquil and beautiful rural settings and range from luxury boutique hotels such as Ulagalla Resort, to eco-friendly resorts such as Jetwing Vil Uyana. There are many highlights of Sri Lanka's Cultural Triangle including four UNESCO World Heritage Sites which between them telling the fascinating story of Sri Lanka's Civilisation. As well as Sigiriya Rock Fortress, the Cave Temples of Dambulla, the Mediaeval capital of Polonnaruwa and the sacred city of Anuradhapura there are numerous other places of interest which are well worth a visit.

Highlights of the Cultural Triangle

Sigiriya Rock Fortress; Dambulla Cave Temples; Polonnaruwa – ruins of the ancient capital; Anuradhapura – sacred city; Wildlife safari in Minneriya National Park (or Kaudulla National Park); Elephant rides/treks; Birdwatching on the ‘tanks’; Hot air balloon ride; Cycle ride – local village life; Ayurveda health treatments, massages, herbal steam beds and aromatic baths; Ritigala monastery ruins (walking required); Aukana Buddha; Mihintale; the story of Buddhism; the story of Ayurveda. Day trip or continue on to Kandy, visiting spice gardens, batik workshops, Temple of the Tooth, Kandy market, city centre, view from hills, workshops for woodcarving, brass and musical instruments.

Cultural highlights of the Cultural Triangle

Four of Sri Lanka's eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites are in what is popularly known as the Cultural Triangle. Between them they tell a fascinating story of Sri Lanka’s civilisation. The 5th century Sigiriya Rock Fortress is one of Sri Lanka’s most awe-inspiring archaeological sites and its prime tourist attraction, well worth climbing to see the majestic views from the summit. Nearby are the Dambulla Cave Temples, each cave filled with murals and gilded statues depicting the life of the Buddha. The well-preserved ruins of Polonnaruwa, the 12th century capital, tell a story of Buddhism, royalty, kinship, war and power. Highlights are the Royal Palace, Council Chamber and four graceful Buddha statues of Gal Vihara. The ancient city of Anuradhapura is a vast archaeological site of palaces, monasteries, temples and dagobas, mostly in ruins, although some have been resorted. This was one of the grandest monastic cities that the world has ever seen. Other sights worth seeing are Mihintale Sanctuary, known as the ‘cradle of Buddhism in Sri Lanka’; Ritigala, ruins of a 9th century monastery hidden amongst dense forest; and Minneriya National Park, a park filled with wildlife including elephants, buffalo, wild boar and crocodiles.

Festivals in the Cultural Triangle

The Buddhist festivals: monthly on Poya (full moon) days, especially Vesak (May) and Poson (June). Poson marks the introduction of Buddhism to Sri Lanka by Arahat Maha Mahinda, son of Asoka of India at Mihintale in 3rd century BC. July to October – the Elephant Gathering: during this season in the evenings, hundreds of wild elephants gather along the banks of the Minneriya Tank.

Climate in the Cultural Triangle

As the climate is very hot with an average temperature of 30° C, it is best to do sightseeing and activities in the early mornings and late afternoons, with time to relax at the hotel, eat or travel in air-conditioning at the height of the day. Average humidity is 60%, with very little rainfall most of the year - most of the rain falls between November and February when the North-east monsoon prevails.

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