Nuwara Eliya, Ella and the Hill Country, Sri Lanka

Posted: February 11, 2013 in Asia, Sri Lanka

After an action packed day in Sigiriya and Dambulla, we pushed on to Nuwara Eliya, a hill station in central Sri Lanka surrounded by tea estates (Ceylon Tea anyone?).

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Being train aficionados, we elected to ride from Kandy to NE in first class, for the very reasonable cost of $10 per person.  Had we roughed it in 2nd class, it would have cost $2 each for a four hour train ride!

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The views from the train were spectacular, as the train slowly gained elevation in to the central highlands of Sri Lanka.  The change of climate was a welcome one, as we had been in high heat and humidity for over a month.  At 1900 metres above sea level, it was cool and perfect for a hike in to Horton Plains National Park, a 90 minute drive from town.

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Horton Plains is the only National Park in Sri Lanka where you do not need to be in a vehicle, and we had a great hike.  We saw monkeys, deer and a couple of waterfalls on a three hour jaunt through the park.  Back to town for dinner (more rice and curry), and a rest.

The next day we were back on the train heading to Ella, another small hill station.  The 1st class train ride was $5 for three hours, insanely cheap for views that were even better than the previous day!

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Upon arrival, a short walk had us at our next hotel, and we dumped the packs and headed up Little Adam’s Peak, an easy hour walk through tea plantations, that led to an awesome view of the surrounding countryside.  Another great couple of days in Sri Lanka, and with the lure of a safari tomorrow (and possibly leopards), all is shaping up well!

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