Aman for all seasons
Galle, South Coast, Sri Lanka
At a Glance
Amangalla consists of an amalgamation of buildings dating back over 400 years, used as an HQ for the Dutch commander and his officers in the 17th century and later as a billet for British soldiers. In 1865, the New Oriental Hotel was born and in its heyday on either side of the Second World War there were no more sought-after or daring parties in Sri Lanka
Enter your room to delightful 1920's jazz being played on your radio
The Terrace is a great spot in the fort for lattés and people watching
The Baths is by far the best Spa in Sri Lanka offering Balinese, Thai and Ayurvedic treatments, as well as hydrotherapy
Amazing packed lunches to take on day trips when exploring the local area
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
From May to August the Yala monsoon brings rain to the island’s southwestern half. The southwest has the highest rainfall – up to 4000mm a year. There is also an inter-monsoonal period in October and November when rain can occur in many parts of the island. Colombo and the low-lying coastal regions have an average temperature of 27°C. The sea stays at around 27°C all year. Climatically speaking, the driest (and best) seasons in Sri Lanka are from December to March for the west and south coasts.
Amangalla is a stunning boutique hotel with just 29 individual styled rooms. Set in the Galle Fort on Sri Lanka's southern coast, it is the perfect place from which to explore.
Amangalla is set within the walls of the historic Galle fort, and dates back over 400 years. The hotel is full of antiques, old prints, rich mahogany, wood and rattan planters and a warm and welcoming staff who will see to your every need.
With only 28 individually styled rooms, Aman Resorts have created a very special city hotel combining the unique architecture of the original buildings with Aman’s renowned contemporary design. The rooms and chambers are more traditional with en-suite bathrooms, while the suites have an open plan design with a separate living room. Due to the age and design of the building, no two chambers or suites are the same.
The dining room serves traditional Sri Lankan curry and home-cooked dishes and is furnished with period chairs and tables. It spills out onto the front terrace should you wish to dine al fresco. Adjacent is the Zaal, a traditional Dutch Great Hall, where light snacks and cocktails are served while you observe the world from the terrace.
There is also a fantastic spa offering treatments from a classic facial and pedicure combined to the Ayurvedic massage using herbs from the Ceylon cornucopia. The Garden Pavilion offers the perfect place for meditation and yoga classes, and there is a lovely pool area.
The hotel offers a range of cultural experiences including visits to local temples, tea plantations and the Hiyare rainforest. You'll also be able to catch a glimpse of the gracious Blue Whale between December and April, a truly unforgettable experience.
Amangalla Suites feature a bedroom with a king size four-poster bed and arched, shuttered windows, a bathroom with a free-standing bathtub, twin vanities, separate toilet and shower and spacious lounge adorned with tasteful furniture. For the ultimate in luxury, book yourself into the Garden House, a delightfully luxurious 2-storey dwelling set amongst the immaculate gardens of the hotel.
Ten chambers are located within the Church Street Wing and face the Fort ramparts. The entrance leads into the open plan room, featuring first the bathroom, followed by the bedroom and a separate sitting area. The bathroom has a large shower, free-standing bathtub, and toilet. A gracious and authentic turn-of-the-century ambience is recreated with use of a four-poster king-size or twin bed arrangement, a planter’s chair, writing desk, dining table and a pettagama chest perched atop gleaming teak floorboards. There are four Garden Wing Chambers, three with balconies and one with a twin porch – all over-looking the treetops of the resort garden. The large rooms feature the same furnishings as the chambers in the Church Street Wing, these have the addition of either antiques or reproductions which complement the highly polished timber floorboards and the shuttered windows on the balcony or porch.
Ten bedrooms are located adjacent to Amangalla’s reception, on the ground level of the Middle Street Wing. Views are either overlooking the garden or the nearby historic Groote Kerk (Great Church). The bedroom and separate bathroom are similar in size with furnishings including a twin or king-size four-poster bed, writing desk, dining table, pettagama chest – all set within the original polished jack-wood floors. The spacious bathroom offers twin vanities, free-standing bathtub, separate shower and toilet. Three bedrooms are set within the property’s gardens. French windows and doors open onto the garden entrance of each room. The bedrooms offer a combined sitting and sleeping area but are otherwise similar to the those located adjacent to Amangalla's reception.
There are eight suites, of which six are located in the Church Street Wing and two in the Middle Street Wing. The Suites look onto Para-rubber trees, the ramparts of the Fort and the harbour, or the mature well-tended tropical gardens. The spacious Suites feature the original polished teak floorboards dating back over 300 years. The entry hall leads to separate bedroom and lounge area. Adjacent to the entry hall is the bathroom with a free-standing bathtub, twin vanities, separate toilet and shower. The bedroom has a twin or king-size four-poster bed and arched, shuttered windows. The lounge is furnished with a chaise longue, writing desk, dining table, planter’s chair and pettagama chest. This furniture is either a property original or careful reproduction.
Situated within the resort gardens, this two-storey house features a private terrace and balcony offering leafy, treetop views. The original, antique furniture of the house has been restored. At the entrance is a sitting room fitted with a chaise longue, armchairs and coffee table. Double doors lead to the bedroom, furnished with a king-size four-poster bed, writing table and dressing cabinet. Adjoining this is a spacious bathroom, bathed in light from the pool garden outside. It offers twin vanities, a free-standing bathtub, toilet and separate shower. An internal stairway rises from the sitting room to the upper level, featuring a daybed and banquette. Other facilities include a pantry serviced by a private butler.
The Amangalla Suite has a separate living area and bedroom with a four poster king sized bed. As well as being light and airy it also overlooks the fort ramparts and the harbour.
Children are welcome to stay at Amangalla, but please note there are no facilities for them, except complimentary babysitting. There is plenty to see and do in and around the hotel. Swim, snorkel and go fishing off the boat, or enjoy a picnic in a coconut-fringed cove. Complimentary baby sitting is available on request.
Facilities at Amangalla include a swimming pool, two restaurants (the 'Zaal' and the 'Dining Room'), lounge and spa featuring 5 treatment chambers, gentlemen's and ladies' dressing rooms lead, saunas, steam rooms and hydrotherapy pools. There is also a barber shop, salon and a yoga and meditation pavilion.
Activities at the hotel include swimming, yoga, meditation, spa treatments and therapies. The hotel will be happy to arrange a selection of tailor made cultural experiences including visits to historic local temples, tea plantations and the Hiyare rainforest. You can also go whale watching in a converted Indonesian fishing trawler from December to April to catch a rare glimpse of the Blue Whale, the largest marine mammal in the world.
Jack Mace (Staff)
Amangalla is a fantastic option for anyone who's looking for real perfection in the heart of Galle Fort. The impressive building is steeped in rich history and you get a real sense of this when you take the arrival tour. Built In 1864, Amangalla was originally the Dutch officers quarters before being converted into one of the most luxurious hotels in Sri Lanka. As soon as you arrive you know you are staying in a special place as you are met by an impressive hotel front and smart bellboys to welcome you in. Here you'll find a smart caf, restaurant and bar equipped with period furniture and even a grand piano. I was lucky enough to enjoy a few meals here and it was all delicious. I stayed in a Standard Room, the lead-in category, and I enjoyed it but I'd recommend one of the bigger rooms if you are used to more space. The property also a great spa and a library which is a lovely place to unwind after a day exploring. I was most impressed with Amangalla's pool and garden area which has amazing cabana's to retire to - nothing in Galle Fort can compete with it
Victoria Hogg (Staff)
I stayed at Amangalla for 1 night on my recent trip to Sri Lanka, and what a night it was. There is something about Aman hotels that immediately put you at ease as you walk through the entrance, and Amangalla didn't disappoint. It is a beautiful property, with such a sense of style and presence in Galle. The rooms are understated, but well designed, and the service is like true Aman service but with a Sri Lankan twist. Make sure you give yourself enough time in Galle, where you can properly enjoy the hotel, whether its to relax by the swimming pool, enjoy the spa with an Ayurvedic treatment, or indulge in the most delicious afternoon tea in the library. Your butler will be on hand to cater to your every need!
Lucy Black (Staff)
Amangalla is a wonderful hotel in an ideal location within the Galle fortress. The service is courteous and welcoming and the food is very good.
The rooms are smart and luxurious, although I would say some of the suites feel a little more corporate. I was lucky enough to stay in the Garden House and it is divine! It felt like I had my own little colonial manor house, with the large sitting room on the 1st floor with a private verandah.
Amangalla has one of the best pools in Galle. At other hotels in Galle, the pools tend to be in the inner courtyards and so don't get much sunlight or have much space for sunbathing, whereas Amangalla's pool is larger and much more open, therefore this is an ideal option for those staying a few days.
Clare Monro (Staff)
Amangalla is just beautiful! Having originally been the New Oriental Hotel, it still retains a lot of its original fittings and furniture, but has been updated by Aman to make it hugely polished and give it a real feeling of exclusivity. Breakfast and afternoon tea are included (except during peak season) so make the most of sitting on the verandah in the late afternoon.
Susie Reynolds (Staff)
I can’t rave about this property enough. Some people ask me why, when you’re on the coast, wouldn’t you stay at a beach property - quite simply because your experience here is entirely unbeatable. I have not had one honeymoon couple, including two of my greatest friends, here whose wife has not found this to be the favourite part of her trip.
The property is pristine, historical and beautifully run with every detail micromanaged to perfection. The staff are charming and many come from the hotels family, their parents and grandparents having worked here before them.
The rooms are exquisitely decorated with old colonial furniture and beautiful fabrics, while the bathrooms make you want to immediately redesign your home.
The dining room, veranda, spa and pool are stunning; I could go on, and on. Just make sure you don’t miss it!
A Southern Blend - Visit a Tea Plantation
It is not just Sri Lanka's Hill Country that is home to tea plantations; not far from Koggala Lake is the South Coast's very own tea plantation. See the ladies plucking tea leaves and visit the tea factory and learn about Sri Lanka's most famous export.
Cycling Tour outside Galle
Spend half a day cycling through the beautiful Sri Lankan countryside outside Galle.
Explore Galle Fort
While staying in the Galle Fort take the time to discover this fascinating colonial town, filled with history. Founded in 1588 by the Portuguese, the fort was subsequently occupied by the Dutch and the British, so there is plenty to explore.
Explore the Kapu Ela River by boat & Cycle through Rural Galle
Enjoy a scenic and immersive tour through the beautiful countryside surrounding Galle. Your journey will take you down the Kapu Ela River by boat and then by bike across the paddies, ending with a traditional Sri Lankan meal and a lesson in hopper making.
Galle Cooking Experience - Food for the Soul
During your time in Sri Lanka you are sure to dine on some soul-stirring dishes, including the traditional Sri Lankan rice and curry. Food lovers will love this cooking experience, from the vibrant market of Galle to cooking in a local village.
Galle Fort Tour with a Local Host
Galle’s main attraction is the 17th century Dutch Fort. Much of the old Fort and the township still remain, within its well-preserved bastions including its public buildings, churches, the famous lighthouse and a maze of narrow cobbled streets.
Hopper Cooking Class at Why House
The foodie in you will love this hands on cooking class at the beautiful Why House. A delectable Sri Lankan staple, hoppers are iconic in Sri Lanka and are delicious when served with a range of chutneys, sambols and curries.
Jeep Safari at Yala National Park
Enjoy a jeep safari to Yala National Park, the most famous National Park in Sri Lanka.
Sailing & Snorkelling Excursion
Climb aboard a beautiful 48ft catamaran, and sail along the south coast of Sri Lanka stopping at private coves to stand-up paddle board, snorkel over colourful reefs, swim or soak up the sun while your crew take the helm.
Visit a Cinnamon Plantation
Today head to Villa Mayurana, close to Koggala on Sri Lanka's South Coast. Learn about the process of growing cinnamon and the history that goes with it. Still a major export, cinnamon has medicinal values as well as being used in everyday cooking.
Walking Tour of Galle Fort
Go on a walking tour of Galle with a local resident / guide.
Weligama - Deep Sea Fishing
Enjoy some deep sea fishing in the waters of the southern town of Weligama. Perfect for beginners or those more experienced at fishing, let your skipper help you catch some big game fish from sharks and tuna to marlin and swordfish.
Whale and Dolphin Cruise from Mirissa
Go on whale and dolphin cruise in Mirissa in the months of December to March.
Whale and Dolphin Watching by Private Catamaran
On this full day boat trip you will have the opportunity to spot vast amounts of marine life from blue whales, false ores, sperm whales and bottlenose dolphins.
Whale Watching by Private Speedboat
Spend three relaxing hours on a private speedboat off the coast in search of the planets largest mammals.
Location & directions
Galle, South Coast, Sri Lanka
Amangalla, resides within the walls of the old Dutch fort in the town of Galle, 120km south of Colombo on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka.
How to get there
Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) is the sole international airport in Sri Lanka and is located about 30km north of the city. Travel time between the airport and the city centre is approximately 1-hour. The car transfer from BIA to Amangalla takes about 3-hours. Alernatively, Sri Lankan Airlines runs a daily Airtaxi service from BIA to Koggala airstrip, a 25-minute drive from Amangalla. The flight time is 45-minutes.
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