Helga’s Folly – A dreamy mansion tucked high on a hill

Tomorrow I’ll be back with a bookish post. But today I’m taking you home to Helga’s Folly… 🙂

Helga’s Folly, unknown to many, is a truly remarkable boutique hotel that leaves most of its visitors wonder-struck.

Located in upcountry Sri Lanka overlooking the mountain scenery of Kandy city, the bright red exterior of Helga’s Folly screams of its uniqueness to anyone heading up the narrow road that leads to the mansion. As if it’s not invitation enough, the ‘Alice in Wonderland’ themed wall stretching up to the mansion entrance gives you a little teaser of what is in store inside.


A grinning Cheshire cat welcoming you to Helga’s Folly

Once you pass the sculptures outside and step inside the mansion, you will come across an array of whimsical frescoes and breathtaking paintings that make it look so out of this world.

There are 17 rooms in the mansion and no room looks like any other. You will find these rooms furnished with antiques wrapped up in all the vibrant hues you can find in a tray of pastel.

When you walk through the hallways, the chandeliers and wax-laden candlesticks that are in abundance will leave you the impression you are part of a Gothic novel.

The imagination and creativity that flows through the mansion doesn’t cease at the washrooms even, as you will find murals and designs from doors to commodes!

A bit of background

Helga De Silva Blow Perera, the namesake and owner of Helga’s Folly, has played host to a line of renown figures including Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Sir Alec Guinness. Helga with her striking personality had also been the muse of Stereophonics’ song ‘Madame Helga’ written by her onetime guest Kelly Jones.


Helga, on her first wedding day at the age of 17. She got married twice afterwards.


For me, Helga’s Folly is the ultimate artful wonder in Kandy. Much like a cragel (half croissant, half bagel), this place is both creepy and phenomenal at the same time, and surely worthy of a visit. 😀

Entrance fee: Bed only charge for a single room during off season is $100, so the place is expensive. (Also I wouldn’t recommend an overnight stay here. However wonderful, the mansion has a musty smell) Good news is they let you wander around the place if you buy a drink, which will cost you $4-$5. 

How to get there: Helga’s Folly is on Rajapihilla Mawatha, off Mahamaya Mawatha. Rajapihilla Mawatha is narrow and winding, so it is recommended you take a tuk from Kandy city when you visit. 

To wrap up the post, here’s ‘Madame Helga’ by Stereophonics.


    1. Yes, very… 😉


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