Yala National Park is a huge area of forest, grassland and lagoons bordering the Indian Ocean, in southeast Sri Lanka. It’s home to wildlife such as leopards, elephants and crocodiles, as well as hundreds of bird species. Inland, Sithulpawwa is an ancient Buddhist monastery.
Nearby caves contain centuries-old rock paintings. Southwest, Magul Maha Viharaya also has ancient Buddhist ruins. Both are pilgrimage sites
Udawalawe National Park lies on the boundary of Sabaragamuwa and Uva Provinces, in Sri Lanka. The national park was created to provide a sanctuary for wild animals displaced by the construction of the Udawalawe Reservoir on the Walawe River, as well as to protect the catchment of the reservoir.
Diyaluma Falls is 220 m high and the second highest waterfall in Sri Lanka and 361st highest waterfall in the world. It is situated 6 km away from Koslanda in Badulla District on Colombo-Badulla highway. The Falls are formed by Punagala Oya, a tributary of Kuda Oya which in turn, is a tributary of Kirindi Oya.
Hiking out of Diyaluma Falls
To get out you can head back up to Poonagala road if you parked your car there. Luckily for us, our driver was waiting for us at the bottom so we had to hike for 30 minutes but it was all downhill. On the way out you will pass through a small village that specializes in producing rubber. We saw the process in all of its stages from the collection of rubber from the tree to the finished product hanging to dry in the sheds.
Once out of the small village you will be back to where you began and can even choose to head to the base of the falls for one last photo if you didn’t get quite enough!
Adisham Hall, or Adisham Bungalow is a country house near Haputale, in the Badulla District, Sri Lanka. At present it houses the Adisham Monastery a congregation of St. Sylvester.
The house was built in 1931 by an English aristocrat and planter Sir Thomas Villiers, former Chairman of George Steuart Co, a trading and estate agency based in Colombo. Sir Thomas was a grandson of Lord John Russell and descendant of the Dukes of Bedford. It was designed by R. Booth and F. Webster in Tudor and Jacobean style, on 10 acres (40,000 m2) of land. Adisham Hall played host to many prominent personalities of the colony until the retirement of Sir Thomas, after which it was sold to Sedawatte Mills. In 1961 it was purchased by the Roman Catholic Church and was subsequently converted to a monastery. The house is well preserved along with its period fittings and furniture, and is open to visitors.
Sir Thomas was always aware of his responsibilities and thus was in touch with the directors at of George Stuarts until his very last days. In the late fifties Sir Thomas wrote a letter to the Wages Commission mentioning that it was very necessary to introduce weekly wages in Ceylon. After enjoying a healthy and a vigorous life Sir Thomas Villiers passed away on December 21st in 1959. The funeral service took place at St. Paul’s Knights bridge while the cremation was held at Pulury Vale. Lady Villiers also died in London in 1964 at the age of 60.
The Villiers presence in Ceylon concluded but their pleasant memories and the life story is carved in every stone that holds up the Adisham Bungalow in Haputale.
The Lipton’s Seat lookout is one of Sri Lanka’s most impressive viewpoints (unless it’s misty and cloudy of course, which is why early morning is the best time to visit). The Scottish tea baron Sir Thomas Lipton used to survey his burgeoning empire from here, and today it’s said you can see across emerald hills and tea estates to no fewer than seven different provinces.
To hike to the lookout, take the signed narrow paved road from the Dambatenne Tea Factory and climb about 8km through lush tea plantations. It’s also possible to drive up – tuk-tuks charge around Rs 2500 return from Haputale. Look forward to the company of Tamil tea pickers going off to work as you walk uphill. Enterprising locals sell drinks and snacks at the top.
Flying Ravana is Sri Lanka’s first ever zip-line, located amidst the luscious green estates of Ella. The two-wire zip-line stretches for more than half a kilometre, slides at 80kmph and offers a bird’s-eye view of the beautiful hills of the island. It is exclusively designed for adventure enthusiasts and adrenaline junkies who prefer a not so ordinary hillside experience.
Flying Ravana is truly, Ella in all its glory.
The Ravana Cave is located about 2 km from the Ella town and 11 km (7 mi) away from Bandarawela. It is quite a small cave, measuring about 50ft wide, 150ft long and 60ft high. History says that the cave is used by King Rawana to hide the Princess Sita.
The cave lies 1,370 m (4,490 ft) above sea level on the foundation of a cliff, and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka with a historical value.
How to Get Here
First come to Maha Ravana Viharaya and Ravana Cave is just 1km away from there, climb up the steep path that led towards the cave. The climb is quite tough with about 650 steps – uneven steps, many of them are quite steep; some places had no steps at all – just on steep rocks.
The last few feet are the toughest as one had to climb up without anything to hold on.
The cave in itself is not very impressive to someone who has very high expectations. Mainly because it is a tough climb and once you reach the place you will only see a small cave.
About Ravana Cave
Like the Sthripura Cave in Welimada, legend has it that it was used by King Rawana to hide the Princess Sita. It is also thought to be connected to the cave at the Dowa rock temple in Bandarawela (part of King Walagamba’s famous ‘tunnel network’). Archaeological findings include a human skull dating back to 20,000 BC.
These tunnels prove beyond doubt the architectural brilliance of King Ravana. The tunnels served as a quick means of transport through the hills and also as a secret passage. They networked all the important cities, airports and dairy farms. A close look at these tunnels indicates that they are man-made and not natural formations.
Existing tunnel mouths are also situated at Ishtripura in Welimada, Senapitiya in Halagala, Ramboda, Labookelle, Wariyapola in Matale, and Seetha Kotuwa in Hasalaka and in many more places.
If you like to explore historical places in Sri Lanka and admire the Ravana History, then this is definitely a place to visit.
Ravana Falls is another must visit in Ella. Hill country of Sri Lanka is quite popular for beautiful waterfalls and Ravana Falls is right at the top.
The falls are quite impressive, and you can climb over some of the rocks to get a closer look.
If you love water and wanna have some splash time, enjoying some hours in the water fall, then this is the place in Ella. You can spend sometime swimming, but be safe as the rocks are slippery.
It currently ranks as one of the widest falls in the country. This waterfall measures approximately 25 m (82 ft) in high and cascade from an oval-shaped concave rock outcrop. During the local wet season, the waterfall turns into what is said to resemble an areca flower with withering petals. But this is not the case in the dry season, where the flow of water reduces dramatically.
The falls is a part of the Ravana Ella Wildlife Sanctuary, and is located 6 km away from Ella Railway station. You can also catch any bus heading to Wallawaya. On the way back, any bus heading up the hill will stop at Ella
The falls have been named after the legendary character Ravana, which is connected to the famous Indian epic, the Ramayana. According to legend, it is said that Ravana (who was the king of Sri Lanka at the time) had kidnapped princess Sita, and had hidden her in the caves behind this waterfall, now simply known as the Ravana Ella Cave. At the time, the cave was surrounded with thick forests in the midst of wilderness. It is also believed that Rama’s queen bathed in a pool that accumulated the water falling from this waterfall.
Everyone asking, where to have a bath in Ella – Here you go, but visit at times it’s not busy and be safe!
Mahamevnawa Buddhist Monastery was established to benefit the spiritual development of human beings through the teachings of Buddha. Founded in 1999 in Sri Lanka by Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda Thero, its sole purpose is to spread the original teachings of the Buddha. The monastery is a warm and welcoming place for everyone to investigate true happiness through Dhamma and meditation. Here the Buddha’s teachings are presented in modern language that is easy to understand. What makes Mahanevnawa unique is the effort to bring the Supreme Dhamma to listeners in its original form.
Ella is a hiking hotspot in the mountain country of Sri Lanka. Some of the views from hikes in Ella are phenomenal with the region well known for its tea plantations and spectacular mountain ranges. If you want to enjoy some of the best views without needing to hike for hours, Little Adam’s Peak is the perfect trek, especially for an unforgettable sunset.
How to get to Little Adam’s Peak from Ella
From the main strip in Ella, you can walk about 1.5kms to the start of the trail. The trailhead is right next to Ella Flower Garden Resort. We parked our car out the front of the resort/restaurant and hit the trail. The map below shows you the location of Little Adam’s Peak (also known as Mini Adam’s Peak) but you can also see where the trail hits the main road (the Flower Garden). An alternative entrance is also located at 98 acres resort and marked by a white Buddha. We went for sunset and only needed about an hour to reach the summit and we were super slow with all of our photos. Coming back down after sunset, we were the last to exit and it was quite dark. Worth it though!