Tree Tops Jungle LodgeSri+Lanka/Tree+Tops+Jungle+Lodge

Starting price: 250 USD/night


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The Tree Tops Jungle Lodge Buttala is the perfect choice for nature lovers looking for truly wonderful wildlife experiences in southern Sri Lanka. The low impact and off the beaten tourist path style of Tree Tops ensures that the camp lives quietly alongside the surrounding nature, assuring guests enjoy plenty of good sightings of both the incredible birdlife and the wildlife of Southern Sri Lanka. With just 3 luxury safari tents set amongst the wildlife and wilderness 10km from the provincial town of Buttala and about 8 km from the less visited northern block of Yala National Park, daily life at the Tree Tops Jungle Lodge is peaceful and uncrowded. Guests can enjoy guided forest walks near the camp, and go on safaris into the Yala National Park where regular sightings are made of the wild elephants, Indian sloth bears, the famous Yala leopards, deer, monkeys and wild boar. You may well see some of these amazing animals at the camp too as Tree Tops Jungle Lodge has a watering hole about 25m from their traditionally built mud-hut restaurant where every evening animals and birds come to drink. You could hardly get any closer to nature than this, and what wonderful sights, and sounds, to enjoy as you dine with friends every evening. This tented eco-camp is set within 25 acres of private forest and bush country which joins onto the Budugalena conservation forest, a part of the wider Yala National Park wildlife sanctuary, so wildlife and birdlife is abundant. The camp is also within the elephant fence, used to try and keep wild elephants away from farmland, so you are sharing living space with wild elephants when staying at Tree Tops Jungle Lodge, Buttala.

The goal of the team and owners at Tree Tops Jungle Lodge was to be as close to nature as possible while making as minimum an impact as possible, and as positive an impact as possible on guests and to the conservation of wildlife and their habitats. With that in mind, for the lodge’s restaurant which is the only permanent structure in the camp, it was decided to make this an environmentally friendly traditional mud and thatch construction. Development is prevented in the conservation areas around the lodge and Tree Tops Jungle Lodge’s 25 acres of private forest is set aside and conserved for nature. The accommodations are 3 luxury safari tents which at 35sqm are spacious and airy with comfy king beds or twin beds, en-suite bathrooms, and solar powered lighting. Guests are cared for by a professional team whether cooking up delicious meals from the freshest local produce, to guided walks with experienced and knowledgeable trackers who love to share the stories of the surrounding wildlife as they help you spot and identify the animals and birds you encounter along the way. Off the grid and off the beaten path, life at Tree Tops Jungle Lodge is simple and stylish, and richly luxurious in the experiences of Sri Lanka’s natural world that it shares with guests.

Your Hosts and The Team

“Situated in a forested and rural region Tree Tops Jungle Lodge pioneered the concept of wild bush camp living in Sri Lanka. From February 2002 we welcomed guests for experiential jungle stays in tree- and mud-huts with dinners in a thatched mud-hut. Later the rooms were converted to tents as it was more convenient to manage and also perfect for the guest experience. It all began, back in 2001, with my personal encounter with this spectacular and wild place. And a dream about a new kind of tourism, authentic as well as constructive. A vision about living in the wild itself and using tourism to help preserve the location in its wild condition. Each of our guests contribute to our efforts protecting our local ecosystem and it has been a privilege for me to welcome people from many countries to enjoy a different way of life, living with nature, in our camp at Tree Tops Jungle Lodge. Due to management duties it’s impossible for me to meet all our visitors but fortunately we have Kamal as a permanent host. He’s extremely talented and experienced and he’s happy to convey our values and explain our history. His own story is extraordinary, and he has been a central part of the Tree Tops Jungle Lodge journey since the beginning when he was just 16 years old, and today he is a director in our company.”

“Located off the beaten path in Southern Sri Lanka’s elephant country, close to the Yala National Park, the Tree Tops Jungle Lodge is a tented camp and ecolodge where luxury and wilderness are in total harmony.”
Kim, the discoverer.


The Tented Rooms (3 units)

At 35sqm, with a terrace, the safari tents are both spacious and airy. Made in Sri Lanka the tents have been designed with high ceilings, so guests do not have to bend and stoop when moving around inside the tent and are set on sand based elevated platforms for protection against flooding. Each tent comfortably sleeps 2 adults but can sleep a maximum of 3 adults with the addition of an extra bed. Being off grid there is no air-conditioning or fans, but again due to the roomy design and the screens front and rear, the tents are well ventilated. Lighting is solar powered, and the en-suite bathroom includes a cold-water shower, sink, and toilet with running water. A table and chairs are set at the terrace of each tent and occasional furniture within the tent includes luggage racks, chairs and bedside tables. And the timeless sounds of the forest at night come at no extra cost.

Hotel Facilities and Highlights

Tree Tops Jungle Lodge highlight
  • WifiWifi
    Gay FriendlyGay Friendly
    Eco FriendlyEco Friendly
    Cooking ClassCooking Class
    Champagne TaittingerChampagne Taittinger
    Wine CellarWine Cellar

Useful Information

Total number of rooms: 3 rooms
Annual closing:
usually closed for maintenance in May

Time zone: (GMT+05:30) Sri Jayawardenepura
Currency accepted: LKR
Electricity voltage: 240V
Electricity plug type:
The team at the lodge manage all guest arrivals and transfers. Please contact the Secret Retreats Concierge to make your booking and confirm your transfer arrangements.
Airport: Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) – 250km (4h30 drive)
Train Station: Ella Train Station – 245km (4hrs drive)

Buttala Village , Sri Lanka , Sri Lanka

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We Care

Our way of camp management was designed for this wild place. Designed to create a real sense of place and a sense of participation in the local community and wilderness. The Lodge’s staff have all been recruited from the local area and are trained-on-the-job. Their natural sense of hospitality ensures an authentic service experience. Sustainability and nature conservation were always core values behind Tree Tops Jungle Lodge. Collaboration with the local community was always a key steppingstone that we used in order to move in the right direction. We’ve worked in informal ways and have real life results to show. Primarily the existence of our unique, wonderful, wild property where we preserve the experience of the place for just a limited number of guests. The Tree Tops Jungle Lodge venture began back in February 2002 as a truly adventurous jungle camp. It was very much a local grassroots initiative. Our 25 acre property was made by combining smaller plots of land, re-wilding the land and as we are within the elephant fence, we are proud to say our land is used by wild elephants.

By only recruiting from our local area and training the team in-house we believe that while this supports our local community it also results in a genuinely authentic experience for our guests that we think of as “living in the wild with the local community”. The vision was to create nature-tourism based jobs where we, as an ecotourism operator, could benefit from the knowledge of the wild nature that was a resource we discovered in the local community. The simple and original idea was to provide a tourism platform where locals were able to use their old traditional knowledge, experience and skills in a constructive way instead of destructive ways that were often need in the forest, in order to survive and make a little income. Our experiential concept is to operate as an eco-camp that facilitates a living experience in wild nature, potentially amongst the wildlife. In order to preserve the original camp experience, feeling and nature in focus, our credo is: basic, simple and minimal infrastructure. Keeping the camp small and for the exclusive few is part of this conscious strategy. Our camp property is landscaped through natural rewilding combined with planting of trees as prior to our purchase of the land parcels that make up our 25 acres the property was largely used for slash and burn (‘chena’) farming. Our use of the property takes place through self-imposed restrictions and a philosophy of minimalism: a tiny camp set up and the lower impact and the more discrete, the better. Today the biodiversity on our land is quite significant and the natural vegetation makes a favourite habitat for wild elephants. They can feed on most of the plants and trees growing at our property that borders, and is unfenced merged with, mature tall dry zone conservation forest. A forest which is connected with Yala National Park. Re-wilding is facilitated by constant planting of native trees grown in our nursery run by company director Kamal. His 2-acres of family land is situated at the Kumbukkan Oya river where he pumps water for the nursery plants. This land is also an organic pepper plantation producing Sri Lankan pepper of a very high quality that is used for cooking at Tree Tops Jungle Lodge.

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