Top family resorts in Sri Lanka

With its compact size, stunning national parks and fascinating history, it is no surprise that Sri Lanka is quickly becoming one of the most popular family destinations on earth. In this article, we take a look at Sri Lanka’s best family resorts...
Frangipani Tree pool and an ocean view. Photo: Press release
Frangipani Tree pool and an ocean view. Photo: Press release

Taking a trip to Sri Lanka: how to get started

Add a stop to one (or more!) of these fantastic hotels to any of our existing trips to Sri Lanka. Alternatively, simply get in touch with us, tell us your interests and budget, and our local experts will tailor a Sri Lankan itinerary to your suit your individual tastes. You can then adjust your itinerary until you are completely happy with it!


The Frangipani Tree

Occupying a beautiful spot at Unawatuna, the Frangipani Tree is the perfect family friendly resort. The well-kept grounds are extensive, perfect for exploring, and dotted with fragrant frangipani trees. For families wishing to spend some active time together, there is a tennis courts to make use, together with a fantastic swimming pool, which is long enough to swim lengths in. Rooms and villas come in varying sizes: the helpful staff will be only too glad to move beds around to accommodate larger families. Rooms also feature private terraces and garden bathrooms, so you can smell the frangipani as you shower. Each year, huge numbers of small swallows migrate all the way from Europe to Sri Lanka, and nest in the Frangipani’s coconut trees. Experience this extraordinary phenomenon for yourself: a stay at the Frangipani Tree is included in Insight Guides’ Sri Lanka: Culture and Coast tour.

Room at the Frangipani TreeRoom at the Frangipani Tree. Photo: Press release

Satin Doll

With a brand new family suite, including an annexe with bunk beds, the Satin Doll is a great place to stay for families with young children. All the family rooms at the Satin Doll have interconnected rooms. The atmosphere here is peaceful and relaxed; the beaches of Unawatuna and Wijaya are close by, along with the Unesco-declared World Heritage Site of Galle Fort. Expect a personal service from the wonderful manager Nuwan, and his fantastic staff. The food at the Satin Doll is sublime, perfect for memorable family dinners. In the evening, you can catch breath-taking ocean sunsets; in the morning, if you rise early enough, you may catch a glimpse of Sri Lanka’s famous stilt fishermen, who fish just in front of the hotel.

Satin DollSatin Doll. Photo: Press release

Weir House

Weir House provides guests with a very personal, Sri Lankan homestay experience. Run by experienced and exceptional host Mr Lucien, Weir House is set in a beautiful Sri Lankan home, with just a handful of rooms. Mr Lucien is very knowledgeable, and happy to suggest the best local family friendly excursions, including walks to local tea plantations and around coffee gardens. The Weir House staff are fantastic, and they cook excellent meals, including a delicious daily afternoon tea, with freshly baked cookies. There is also a swimming pool, boasting fantastic views of the surrounding mountains. If it rains, Weir House has an impressive collection of board games and films, which will keep all of the family entertained. The living room also has a swing, which children love.  

Weir HouseWeir House. Photo: Press release

Jetwing Lighthouse

Designed by the famous Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa, the Jetwing Lighthouse features 63 well-appointed rooms that look out over the shimmering Indian Ocean. Located just outside Galle, the property is a stylish and comfortable base for exploring the area, which includes the Unesco World Heritage Site of Galle. Sri Lankan artist Laki Senanayake has recreated a scene from the Battle of Randeniya between the Dutch and the Sinhalese, sculpted from copper and brass. The hotel’s excellent restaurant serves a range of mouth-watering dishes that will appeal to all the family, not least the pizza at Lorenzo’s Pizza Corner. 

Jetwing LighthouseJetwing Lighthouse. Photo: Press release

Water Garden

Located in the middle of Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle, close to the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, the Water Garden fuses the ancient tradition of water manipulation with modern comfort and luxury. The result is an extraordinary family getaway, with a distinct air of isolation, despite being in close proximity to several major historical sites. This makes the Water Garden a comfortable and convenient base for rewarding and interesting family excursions. There are 30 spacious villas and rooms in total, with large living areas that are great for families. Rooms also feature private verandas and swimming pools.

Water GardenWater Garden. Photo: Press release

Elephant Stables

As the name suggests, the Elephant Stables is set on a plantation that was once used to keep elephants. Sir Cudah Ratwatte, the former patriarch of Sri Lanka’s most aristocratic family, once owned the grounds the hotel now occupies. Today, the Elephant Stables is a stylish boutique hotel set in an old colonial bungalow that looks out toward the Knuckles Mountains range. Unlike many boutique hotels in Sri Lanka, the Elephant Stables welcomes families with children. There are family three suites in total, offering ample space for families, all featuring space for additional beds. There is also an excellent designer swimming pool, and living room, complete with a comprehensive collection of the greatest movies of all time. A stay at the Elephant Stables is included in Insight Guides’ Sri Lanka Family Adventure trip.   

Pool at the Elephant StablesPool at the Elephant Stables. Photo: Press release

Heritance Tea Factory

Featuring 50 colonial-style rooms and boasting incredible views of the surrounding verdant tea plantations, the Heritance Tea Factory is popular with families looking for a relaxing and secluded Sri Lankan getaway. The resort offers educational tea-picking tours into the nearby hills. There is also a mini-golf course for families to enjoy, along with luxurious relaxing spa treatments for parents at the Misty Mountain Spa. Inside, rooms are cosy and feature cable TV, complimentary organic tea, and rainwater showers.  Dining on Wheels – the hotel restaurant – is set in an old train carriage, and serves a tasty selection of local and international dishes.

Heritance Tea FactoryHeritance Tea Factory. Photo: Press release

Coco Bay

Located in the calmer part of Unawatuna, Coco Bay is a great choice for families who want to stay in close proximity to the iconic horseshoe-shaped Unawatuna Beach, but without the noise and crowds. The ocean-facing Coco Bay provides a relaxing environment for families, featuring comfortable sunbeds that are shaded by coconut trees. It is located on a small bay, where the sea is calmer, making it perfect for children to swim. The staff are very personable and attentive, and are used to accommodating families with children of all ages. Close by the Coco Bay is the Japanese Rumassala Peace Pagoda, which is a great spot for a family snap, and to watch the stunning Sri Lankan sunset.    

Coco BayCoco Bay. Photo: Press release

Cinnamon Wild Yala

Set just five minutes’ drive from the boundaries of Yala National Park, Cinnamon Wild Yala is a great place to stay for families looking to have an authentic safari experience. Accommodation is provided in chalets that look out over either the beach or the jungle. Inside, local artwork adorns the air-conditioned rooms, which also feature private balconies. The restaurant serves excellent Asian and Western delicacies, which can be enjoyed either in the restaurant or the comfort of your chalet. The friendly staff have fantastic knowledge of the park and surrounding area, and can design bespoke safari experiences around your preferences. Stay at the Cinnamon Wild Yala, as part of Insight Guides’ Unforgettable Sri Lanka trip.

Cinnamon Wild YalaCinnamon Wild Yala. Photo: Press release

Looking for more things to do in Sri Lanka? 

When to go to Sri Lanka

11 essential Sri Lanka experiences

Top 5 beaches in Sri Lanka

7 best boutique hotels in Sri Lanka