If, along with rest and relaxation, your idea of the perfect holiday hideaway involves cooking up your own meals with fresh ingredients, then a self-catering stay at Samakanda Guesthouse might be just what you’re looking for. Tucked away in the hills above the town of Galle, Samakanda comprises two comfortable, solar-powered cottages: one a restored planter’s hut, the other a small bungalow overlooking lush terraced fields. As well as being an idyllic spot to cook your own food, it’s a great place to pick it – guests are welcome to take what they need from the organic spice, herb and vegetable gardens that enclose each property, from fresh salad greens to delicious fruits such as papayas, coconuts, passion fruits and bananas. The estate even grows its own rare strain of red rice, while local markets can supply fresh fish. Should you fancy a night off from cooking, call on gourmet chef, Rory, the owner and founder of Samakanda, to show you how the stone pizza-oven works, or help you prepare some of his own favourites. With all the meals you and he can rustle up, you’ll also need a way to work it off; walk some of the trails laid out through the surrounding fields and forests, amble down to the river to cool off, or for the more energetic, try an exhilarating 40km cycle ride down through the jungle to the beach…and back.