HILL COUNTRY

Adventure

KANDY

Kandy town is situated in the Central Province. It is the cultural heart of Sri Lanka and is surrounded with beautiful mountains, tea plantations and rain forests. It is the home of the Temple of the Tooth Relic. This relic is believed to be a preserved tooth of the Lord Buddha. It is worshiped and kept in the temple “Sri Dalada Maligawa”, which used to be a former palace during the ancient Kings’ era, when Kandy became the 2nd capital.

Annually in the months July or August the tooth relic is taken from the temple during the biggest Buddhist festival called the “Esala Perahera”. Thousands of people gather on the Kandyan streets to honour the relic, which is carried on one of the many elephants wearing beautiful, colourful garments and lights. They are accompanied by jugglers, fire-eaters, dancers and musicians playing traditional musical instruments.

Kandy is one of the most sacred places for Buddhists, but also culturally rich for tourists and offers a beautiful scenery. We advise you to take a look at the city from one of its viewpoints, the Buddha Statue or from the terrace of one of the high rise hotels. Also do not forget to walk around the man-made Kandy Lake in the city’s heart when you have visited the Temple of Tooth.

Another must-see are the Royal Botanical Gardens in Peradeniya about 5 kilometers West from Kandy. We recommend that you order a take-away from the local restaurants. They will give it to you in a bag with serviettes. Then just try to eat like the locals, inside the Botanical Garden in the grass enjoying the surroundings. The proper way to eat your food is with your hands! Just give it a try and watch out not to eat your fingers too. The food in Sri Lanka is the best in the world! Do not leave the country without having tried the rice and curries, kottu, idiyappam, hoppers, coconut roti with a variety of sambal or fried rice.

NUWARA ELIYA

 

It is a town in the tea country hills of the Central Province and also known as “Little England”. This is because of the weather and the colonial architecture (old English bungalows) that can be found in the area. The average temperatures are much lower here than anywhere else in Sri Lanka. This is the only place where you can see Sri Lankans wearing jackets and hats. It also gives the city a very different feel from other parts of the country.  The town is also rich of beautiful waterfalls, mountains, lakes and tea plantations. It is small enough to walk around. Farmers grow fruits and vegetables that can also be found in Europe. When you are craving strawberries during your holiday, this is the place where you can get them!

Visit the nice waterfalls, such as Dunhinda Falls, Diyaluma Falls, Baker’s Falls, St. Claire’s Falls, Ravana Ella, Bambarakanda Ella, Aberdeen Falls, Laxapana Falls, The Lovers Leap, and Bridal Falls. Or check out Hakgala Botanical Gardens and Seetha Temple (hindu), Pedro Tea Factory or of course Hortons Plains National Park. This park is famous for its 800 meters vertical drop at Worlds End.

Take a walk up through the tea plantations south-west of the town to the top of Single Tree Mountain for a splendid view over Nuwara Eliya. From the hill top you can walk north for a couple of kilometres along the ridgetop to a nearby village and get a tuc-tuc/three-wheeler or walk back to town from there.

For more sightseeing you can visit Victoria Park and Hakgala Gardens. Lake Gregory lies less than a mile from the centre of town and offers a splendid and peaceful environment for sightseeing and boating. Boats can be hired from the area.

You can also explore the tea plantations and factories and stay at one of the colonial bungalows near the plantations for easy access and special tours.

Playing golf is also an option, along with heading to the racecourses (the only proper ones you’ll find in Sri Lanka). These are both traditions left over from the colonial era.

Take a train trip from Nanu Oya towards Kandy. For the colonial experience book a 1st class ticket in the observation car. For an authentic local experience book a 3rd class ticket and hang out of the door of the carriage.

ELLA

 

Ella is a typical backpackers mountain town. It used to be very small, however due to its amazing scenery and touristic hot spots it became very popular. Hotels, guesthouses, bars, restaurants, B&B’s started popping up. The vibrant night life has a very laid back atmosphere. The town is situated in Badulla District and is surrounded by cloud forests and tea plantations.

The town has many touristic sites. Due to its hight it can be much colder than the rest of Sri Lanka. Therefore we recommend that you bring long clothes (pants/sweaters and a rain jacket). Most of the sites require a lot of hiking and are not suitable to visit wearing your slippers. The most famous tourist attractions are the Dhowa Temple, Bambaragala Peak, Ella Rock, Little Adams Peak, Ravana Ella and the Nine Arches Bridge.

It is a lot of fun to visit this town by train. The views are amazing! Sri Lanka still uses the trains of the period that it was colonised by the British. They are still using the old procedures and techniques, such as the passing of the tablet in each station.

BADULLA

Badulla is the capital of Uva Province.Located south east Kandy, encircled by Badulla Oya.

Badulla was an isolated village until the British built roads from Kandy and Nuwara Eliya in the mid 19th century, as part of the growing plantation economy.

By the 20th century Badulla had become a regional hub, with the British establishing it as the capital of Uva Wellassa. Badulla still has a number of British colonial buildings existing, including the Badulla railway station which opened in 1924. The station is the last train station on the Main Lain, which served as the rail line by the British to transport tea collected from the Badulla district to Colombo. Badulla district is one of the leading tea producing districts, second only behind the Nuwara-Eliya District.

The town has grown steadily since the country’s independence from approximately 13,000 in 1946, to 38,000 in 1977 and 47,587 in 2011.

Badulla is a multi-national city with the ancient Muthiyangana Temple situated in its heart. The Catholic Church has a diocese headquartered here. It is emerging as a well developed city in Sri Lanka with a state of the art provincial hospital and many more developments.

Tourists attractions are Muthiyangana Buddhist Temple, Badulla Kataragama Hindu Temple, Dunhida Waterfall, Bogoda Wooden Bridge, Demodara Railway Bridge and Saint Mark’s Church.

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