Thotalagala Plantation House Haputale


The planters bungalow has been revived to its former glory, with seven themed suites based on personalities that shaped the history of the province of Uva, one of the foremost tea growing regions in Sri Lanka, the finest tea growing region in the world.

Haputale is ideally located on the trail between Sri Lanka’s lush mountains and the descent towards the south coast and the jungles of Yala and Udawalawe which are a two hour drive away. Across the hills the ancient capital of Kandy lies within a two and a half hour radius. This location between Kandy and the Southern Wildlife parks and beaches makes Haputale an ideal location to sample the best of Sri Lanka’s tea country.

Thotalagala is steeped in history; it is located on Pitaratmalie Estate which is part of Agarapatana Plantations, a collection of estates that totals almost 8000 hectares of the finest high grown tea that Sri Lanka produces. Adjoining the estate is Dambatenne, possibly the most famous estate in all of Sri Lanka. Dambatenne is one of the only estates in the world that Sir Thomas Lipton planted himself. The term “Ceylon Tea” was coined here, and Lipton’s Tea was founded and sold its first pound of tea from the precincts of the factory which still stands today. Guests of Thotalagala will be granted exclusive access to the factory and the bungalow which was Sir Thomas Lipton’s residence from 1890 to 1910.

Thotalagala bungalow is surrounded by 20 acres of lawn and patana grass. From the edge of the lawn a sweeping vista greets the eye. Behind the bungalow and covering the Haputale hills lies 4000 hectares of tea stretching unto Lipton’s seat, 1500 feet above,and over onto the Bandarawela side of the mountain. The seven suites represent the epitome of colonial luxury. The teak panelled smoking room is the ideal place to retreat to for an after dinner cognac. The dining room itself is with its twenty seater table, a place to savour traditional hearty plantation fare. This is also a working estate and guest will be able to immerse themselves into the traditional lifestyle of a tea planter.

Come and explore true working tea country, walk through endless tea gardens. We invite you to stay with us awhile, to travel back in time and walk in the footsteps of Sir Thomas Lipton.


  • Sir Thomas Lipton - Self made man, merchant, yachtsman and the name behind the world renowned tea brand; this genial, enterprising Glasgowian left an indelible impression not just on Haputale, but on the entire country.
  • James Taylor - There would be no Ceylon Tea without James Taylor. Credited with introducing tea plantation to British Ceylon, Taylor was instrumental in beginning, and thereafter ensuring the success, of what continues to be the nations’ foremost export commodity.
  • Rev. Walter Senior - Popularly known as the ‘Bard of Lanka’, English scholar and poet - Reverend Senior is the author of the famous Hymn for Ceylon. He remained in Sri Lanka till the end of his days and is buried in the St. Andrew’s Churchyard, Haputale.
  • Major Rogers - A Major in the Ceylon Rifle Regiment, Assistant Government Agent and District Judge of Badulla, Rogers is perhaps most remembered as an Elephant hunter, a pastime that was widely popular in Colonial times.
  • John Duncan - Credited with the upliftment of the Uva region due to his role in the extension of the railway, Duncan’s insight and tenacity helped reduce the cost, and increase the practicality, of transportation to and from the province.
  • George Pilkington - Another intrepid young man who found himself captured by Ceylon’s lush beauty was George Pilkington. Finding in the hill country a "whiff of England and Scotland", he went on to establish the Poonagala Estate, and Pilkington Point.
  • Sam Popham - Having first visited the country during the second World War, Sam Popham returned to Ceylon in 1963 and established the Popham Arboretum. He planted at Thotalagala in the early 1970s, and the bungalow’s incredible gardens owe much to his vision.

From US$ 840

2 Nights for 2 people at Thotalagala Plantation House on BB Basis