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Step away from the usual holiday routine and take yourself on a unique exploration of yoga and meditation. Ulpotha is about experiencing a relaxed and contented lifestyle. Its practice is based on the appreciation and need for leisure and pleasure, whether in work or play, and the need for adequate rest if a life is to be well lived. The traditional lifestyle experienced in Ulpotha provides all ingredients necessary for a balanced existence and the closeness of nature combines, to offer you the holiday of a lifetime.
Guests are accommodated in one of a number of tastefully decorated traditional wattle and daub huts sprinkled through Ulpotha, where living is by design a communal and shared experience in natures embrace.
There are 11 charming guest huts in Ulpotha, 10 of which are for two guests and one for three.
All of them are built using traditional wattle and daub with comfortable beds, excellent mosquito nets, cupboards, fresh water, towels, and offer a sarong to wear and take home. The huts are of an open, airy design that facilitates the sense of being one with nature. Twice a year, each hut is hand painted using different colored clays, where no designs are ever repeated. Much use has been made of clay, stone, wood, pottery, and fabrics that reflect traditional village practices and aesthetics. With one or two exceptions, Ulpotha adheres to the Sri Lankan village tradition of keeping toilet/loo spaces separate from living spaces. The enchanting showers are open to the stars and the toilets are modern.
All our accommodations are on a Sharing basis, which means that a Solo traveler will be automatically allocated, in a spacious double hut (Twin beds), with another like minded guest of the same gender. Guests booking, and coming together, will be allocated in a Double hut (Double bed, or Twin beds, if not a couple). Sharing with someone is more welcome than one might usually expect, though ultimately soothing to the ears, the unusual jungle noises can take some getting used to and its quite reassuring to have a companion sharing ones space. The guests will anyway find that they end up spending very little time in their hut, except, at night.
On your day of arrival, you will be collected from the airport by one of Ulpotha's excellent drivers and welcomed in Ulpotha with a coconut juice, herbal tea, fruits, and healthy snacks. The day begins with a birdsong, as well as light tea and fruit before your dynamic morning class.
After breakfast, choose an Ayurveda detox package and enjoy the oil applications and herbal baths and steams under the supervision of our resident doctor, or simply go for a swim or relax on a swing bed. Lunch is served in the Ambalama, where you can enjoy a delicious array of veggie dishes, juices, and teas while chatting with fellow guests.
In the afternoon, have a massage with one of outstanding international therapists, take a bike ride and visit the local village, roam the hills, visit the neighboring Buddhist temple, boat on the lake, or simply relax.
Afternoon classes held at sunset are restorative and include meditation and pranayama. Enjoy a sumptuous candlelit veggie dinner, borrow a book from our library, or chat with the owners. Head up to the lake and dance under the moonlight.
For the tailored ayurveda treatment packages, we do a very simple traditional Panchakarma, which depending on one's dosha-type (determined via consultation with our in-house doctor), involves oleation (oil application to the body), herbal baths, steam baths, saunas, inhalation, rice milk packs, facials, etc, nothing too heavy. It is a great detox and combined with the yoga and Ulpotha's delicious food, leaves one feeling super relaxed, toned and cleansed. Dr. Srilal leaves a couple of days for the guests to acclimatise, before starting a treatment.
For your info, our little Ayurvedic clinic offers a limited amount of Ayurveda packages/per day (8, for women & 3, for men), therefore, to avoid any disappointment, we recommend for the guests to pre-book and pre-pay their Ayurveda package, at the time of their booking, and prior their arrival at Ulpotha as we will give the priority to the guests who will have pre-booked and pre-paid their packages.
For your info, the holiday cost includes two daily Yoga classes of 1 & half to two hours/per day, one class in the morning, around 7:30am, the second class, in the afternoon, around 5:00pm. Please note that the Yoga starts on the 1st Sunday evening and finishes after class, on the final Saturday night, to allow guests to check out, by 10:30am, in the final Sunday. There is no Yoga, on the afternoon of the 1/2 day excursion trip (week one), Nor, on the day of the excursion trip of week two.
Nigel Gilderson has been teaching yoga in the UK and on retreats around the world since 1997. He is founder and senior teacher of Brockwell Lido yoga centre in London. Nigel Gilderson's teaching has evolved over the years and incorporates a blend of many yoga styles, with influences from tai chi and shadow yoga and Alexander technique integrating the celebration of the heart, universal principles of alignment, and balanced energetic action in the performance of asana. Each student's abilities and limitations are deeply respected and honored.
Pauline is a positive and inspirational holistic healing expert with over 30 years experience. Her signature therapeutic massage focuses on relieving specific areas of tension, pain or imbalance in the muscular systems and opening and restoring your energetic body. Starting with reflexology of the feet, Pauline will “read” you from the inside out to gauge exactly what you will need in a session.
Kenny believes that Prana and Qi crossed paths on the silk road and have become intertwined over the ages. He combines his understanding of Zen and barefoot-style Shiatsu, Tuina, traditional Thai massage, osteo -Thai bodywork, Chi Nei Tsang, Ruesi Datton (Thai yoga), Hatha yoga, and Qi Gong with compassionate intention to create his own style of bodywork. He refined his yoga practice with the help of Don and Amba Stapleton and received his 500 hour teaching certification through the Nosara Yoga Institute in Costa Rica in 2002.
Ulpotha is located in the heart of Sri Lanka by a lakeside at the foot of the Galgiriyawa mountains - off the beaten track. About 1 hour drive north from Kurunagala, 2 hours northwest from Kandy, and 2 - 3 hours from the airport. The first thing that was done when Ulpotha was re-inhabited was to address the aridity of the land that had resulted from the years it had been reduced to a mono culture coconut plantation prior to its abandonment. This was done through the management of planting patterns, as well as the building of ponds and bunds, all of which were designed to increase the soils water retention capacity and protect its fertility. Ulpotha then later on transformed into the self-sustaining, bio-diverse organic farm it is today; one where the practice of farming is holistic and includes paying respect to the land and its resources as well as to the deities protecting it.
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Ulpotha will be providing tasty vegetarian meals and snacks. The food at Ulpotha is simply delicious and very healthy. It is almost entirely vegan, naturally wheat free, with an abundance of fresh vegetables, organic red rice, and tropical fruit freshly picked from Ulpothas gardens. A good opportunity to detoxify your system without fuss.
The western massage treatments range from Thai, deep tissue massage, aromatherapy, to Shiatsu. They are done by fully qualified massage therapists from Europe. Massage styles change from month to month, as Ulpotha uses different massage experts each month. So, if you yearn for a particular type of massage, its wise to ask when its available before booking your holiday. Guests can expect one free massage from visiting therapists per week. Any further massages can be arranged with the therapists subject to availability at a cost of 60 USD per hour. Ulpotha also has an exciting program of Ayurveda treatments and, by the very definition of "holistic", possesses the ideal climate and environment for the practice of this deeply therapeutic and traditional art.