Category: Destinations

Discusses about travel destinations in Sri Lanka

Kalpitiya

Kalpitiya is situated in the district of Puttalam, Sri Lanka’s northwest province. It is known for its beauty of serenity. It’s made up of 14 islands. It has an area of 16.73 km2 in total. Kalpitiya’s people are mostly fishermen. The peninsula of Kalpitiya is famous for kitesurfing and dolphins, often jostling and playing in the offshore waters of schools of hundreds. Relatively recently, thrill-seekers and nature lovers discovered what was once a quiet rural backwater, now expanding rapidly as a top tourist destination.

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DUTCH FORT

The Dutch constructed Kalpitiya Fort between 1667 and 1676. Kalpitiya was important because Puttalam Lagoon commands the entrance to the adjacent bay. The surrounding region of Puttalam was one of Sri Lanka’s main cinnamon growing fields. The Dutch even built a canal to transport cinnamon from the area from Puttalam via Negombo to Colombo. The fort is almost square in shape, with walls about 4 m (13 ft) high, built from the surrounding area out of coral and calcareous. It has a single entrance facing the lagoon, which has a pediment, above it a belfry, and looks like a church entrance.
The yellow bricks that comprise the entrance arch were reportedly brought especially from Holland. The story is that the King of Kandy had only granted permission to build a church here and that the Dutch had built the arch to mislead the King into believing it was just a fortified church.

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DOLPHIN & WHALE WATCHING

Enjoy amazing whale watching trip in Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka-one of the region’s finest sighting locations for sperm whales and blue whales. One of tourist’s main reasons for visiting the Kalpitiya area from November to March is that you will see 1000 dolphin pods. Early morning dolphin watching tours are performed. Bottlenose, Risso and Indo-Pacific are the most common spinner dolphins. Humpback dolphins are frequently watching.

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KALPITIYA KITESURFING

Kalpitiya is the country’s nominally best kite surfing location. The summer kite surfing season is during the southwest monsoon from May to October, while the winter season is during the north-eastern monsoon from mid-December to mid-February.

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Jaffna

Jaffna is the capital of Northern Province of Sri Lanka. It is the Jaffna District administrative headquarters situated on a peninsula of the same name. Jaffna is the 12th most populous town in Sri Lanka with a population of 88,138 in 2012. Jaffna is about six miles (9.7 kilometers) from Kandarodai, which was used as an emporium from the classical antiquity in the Jaffna peninsula. Jaffna’s Nallur suburb served as the capital of the medieval Jaffna Kingdom, which lasted four centuries.
It was the second most populous town in Sri Lanka after Colombo before the Sri Lankan Civil War. The insurgent rebellion of the 1980s resulted in comprehensive harm, part of the population being expelled, and military occupation. Refugees and internally displaced people have begun to return to their homes since the end of the civil war in 2009, while reconstruction of the government and the private sector has begun. Jaffna has been a disputed town historically. During the Portuguese occupation of the Jaffna peninsula in 1619, it was transformed into a colonial port town that lost it to the Dutch, only to lose it to the British in 1796. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) occupied Jaffna in 1986 during the civil war. The city was briefly occupied by the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) in 1987. From 1989 to 1995, when the Sri Lankan Army regained control, the LTTE again occupied the town.

ATTRACTIONS IN JAFFNA

NALLUR KANDASWAMY KOVIL

Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil is an important Hindu temple, situated in Nallur, Northern Province, Sri Lanka. The leading deity is Lord Murugan or Katharagama Deviyo in the form of the holy’ Vel’ in the Sanctum, the primary shrine, and in other forms such as Shanmugar, Muthukumaraswami, Valli Kaanthar with Valli and Deivayanai consorts, and Thendayuthapani, without consorts in the temple’s secondary shrines.
The original Kandaswamy Temple was founded in 948 AD. Buwaneka Bahu, a minister to the King of Kotte, developed the temple at the site in the 13th century, according to the Yalpana Vaipava Malai.
The construction of the third Nallur Kandaswamy temple is attributed to Sapumal Kumaraya (also known as Chempaha Perumal in Tamil), who ruled the Jaffna kingdom on behalf of the Kotte kingdom. Nallur was the capital of the kings of Jaffna, with the royal palace very close to the temple. Nallur has been constructed with four gate entrances. There were two main roadways and four temples at the four gateways.

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JAFFNA PUBLIC LIBRARY

The Jaffna Library was first constructed in 1933 and has been a sign of northern culture for a long time. The library, underlined by its now restored classical architecture, also suffered a terrible burning in 1981–a time when it housed nearly 100,000 books and manuscripts, making it one of Asia’s biggest libraries. The Jaffna Library retained ancient literature and records from distinguished academics and other experts and served as a cherished depository for data about the northern peninsula’s history and culture. Today, although filled with a collection nowhere near its original, the Library still commands the timeless dignity it upholds for the people of Jaffna and beyond.

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NAINATIVU NAGAPOOSHANI AMMAN TEMPLE

Nainativu Nagapooshani Amman Temple is an ancient and historic Hindu temple on the island of Nainativu, Sri Lanka, surrounded by the Palk Strait. It is devoted to Parvati, known as Nagapooshani or Bhuvaneswari, and her consort, Shiva, called Nayinaar here. The fame of the temple is accredited to Adi Shankaracharya, a Hindu philosopher of the 9th century, for defining it in Shakti Peetha Stotram as one of the prominent 64 Shakti Peethams and its mention in Brahmanda Purana.
The temple complex houses four gopurams (gateway towers) varying from 20-25 feet in height to the east Raja Raja Gopuram at 108 feet high. The temple is an important symbol for the Tamil people and has been cited in Tamil literature like Manimekalai and Kundalakesi since ancient times. The current structure was constructed between 1720 and 1790 after the Portuguese in 1620 demolished the old structure. The temple draws around 1000 tourists a day during festivals and around 5000 visitors. More than 100,000 pilgrims attract the annual 16-day Mahostavam (Thiruvizha) festival celebrated during Aani Tamil month (June / July). There is an estimated 10,000 sculptures in this newly renovated temple.

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ELEPHANT PASS

Elephant Pass, Northern Province, Sri Lanka is situated in the gateway of Jaffna Peninsula. There are about 340km north from capital of Colombo. It has a significant military base and used to be the island’s largest salt field. It has regularly been the site of battles during the civil war.

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KAYTS CAUSEWAY

A string of tiny islands extends west of Jaffna, pointing towards India, mostly connected to the continent by roads built up from the shallow water.

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NAGADEEPA PURANA VIHARA

Nagadeepa Purana Vihara is an ancient Buddhist temple located in Jaffna. According to the Mahavamsa chronicles and the Tamil Buddhist epic Manimekalai, ancient history mentions a gem-studded throne and a stone with the footprint of the Buddha on Nainativu Island (also known as Nagadeepa) visited by pilgrims from India.
The site is renowned as the location where Lord Buddha arrived to intervene and mediate in settling a conflict between two Naga Kings, Chulodara and Mahodara over the ownership of a gem-studded throne during his second trip to Sri Lanka after five years of achieving Enlightenment.
When Buddha came and saw the Naga Kings ready to fight, Buddha used psychic powers to appear miraculous in the sky. This amazed and pleased the Nagas. After listening to the Dhamma sermons showing Buddha’s masterly understanding of unity and harmony, meththa and empathy, the Naga kings with overwhelming faith paid homage to Budhha. In unison, the throne was given to him and they became devotees of piety.
A deity named Samiddhi Sumana, who had created his residence in the banyan tree, followed him to Thathagatha while in Jetavanarama, holding him as an umbrella (parasol) the uprooted tree (Rajayathana tree). Kelaniya’s ruler, Naga King Maniakkitha, moved by Buddha’s compassion, thanked him overwhelmingly for settling the conflict. He also asked for a souvenir to worship and he was given the Rajayathana tree and the throne by the Buddha.
Reconstructed and evolved in the time of King Devanampiya Tissa and Dutugemunu, the Nagadeepa Vihara has been converted into a sacred place.

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JAFFNA FORT

Jaffna Fort is a fort constructed at Jaffna, Sri Lanka by the Portuguese in 1618 under Phillippe de Oliveira after Jaffna’s Portuguese invasion. The fort is close to Karaiyur. The fort was appointed Fortress of Our Lady of Miracles of Jafanapatao (Fortaleza de Nossa Senhora dos Milagres de Jafanapatao) because of various miracles ascribed to the statue of the Virgin Mary in the neighboring church. It was seized in 1658 by the Dutch who extended it under Rijcklof van Goens. It was taken over by the British in 1795 and stayed under British garrison control until 1948. As the country’s only big military fort, it was garrisoned by a Ceylon Army detachment owing to the existence of only state and military structures within its ramparts.
It came under siege on several occasions with the beginning of the Sri Lankan Civil War and was the scene of pitched fights. From 1986 to 1995, it was under the control of the LTTE during this time, and the LTTE destroyed several key features to stop the army from gaining control because of the site being used for attacks, but it was recovered by the Sri Lankan Army in 1995 after a 50-day siege during Operation Riviresa. Locals have also vandalized the reconstruction of buildings damaged by the conflict. Today, a detachment of the Sri Lankan Army with restricted access to tourists stays in garrison and is being refurbished with financing from the Dutch.
Buildings inside the fort include the residence of the governor (King’s House), Queen’s House, Kruys Church, Garrison Parade Ground, quarters of the police and several others.

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DAMBAKOLA PATUNA SANGAMITTA TEMPLE

Jambukola Port or Dambakola Patuna is an ancient port north of Jaffna.
After Mihindu Maha Thero brought Buddhism to Sri Lanka in 250BC, his sister, Theri Sanghamitta arrived in Sri Lanka with a Sacred Bo Sapling one year later to this port. The temple Samudda-panasala (Jambukola Viharaya) was built commemorating the arrival of the Bo sapling by King Devanampiya Tissa (250-210 BC). The same king later planted one of the Sri Maha Bodhi’s first eight shoots at the same location where he kept the initial tree before taking it to Anuradhapura. This site has been restored by King Vijayabahu I (1070–1110).
There are no more remains of the vihara, such as the Buddha footprint stone and vatadage seen to date. This port gradually faded in significance while the port Mahathiththa / Mahathota / Mantota (now Mantai) at the mouth of Malvatu oya evolved as a main junction of sea routes and the Dambakola Patuna Viharaya was lost in time. Sri Lanka’s Great Chronicle, Mahavamsa and Samanthapaasasdika mention pilgrims coming to Jambukola from the “Yonaka” nation to attend the old Jambukola Viharaya.

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NEDUNTHEEVU (DELFT ISLAND)

Neduntheevu (also known by its Dutch name Delft) is an island in northern Sri Lanka’s Palk Strait. Unlike the other islands whose names are Tamil, this island is named as Delft in the Admiralty Chart. The region of the island is 50 km2 and is approximately oval-shaped. It has a length of 8 km and a maximum width of approximately 6 km.
Neduntivu is a flat island inhabited by shallow waters, coral chunks and sand beaches. It is home to a small Tamil population, mostly living near the northern coast in quiet compounds.
The vegetation is a semi-arid tropical form, with palmyra palms, dry shrubs and grasses growing on the pale, porous coralline soil of Grey. Papayas and bananas are growing near the homes of the local people. There are remains of a 1000-year-old temple on the island’s western coast as well as the ruins of a colonial Dutch fort. The water is mildly brackish, and buckets produced from palmyra palm leaves are taken from shallow wells. During the Sri Lankan Civil War, a naval fight was fought off the island’s coast in 2008. The island has feral ponies, offspring of forebears abandoned in the Dutch period. Rijckloff van Goens named the island after Delft’s Dutch town. After Dutch towns, he named the eight most significant islands.

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Bandarawela

Bandarawela is a large town located in the district of Badulla, in the province of Uva, Sri Lanka, 28 km from Badulla. Bandarawela is a famous retirement center due to the pleasant climate and access to local facilities, a busy market town that is a nice jump-off point to explore the surrounding region. With little to attract visitors, if you’re going east or further into the Hill Country, the city is a nice transport hub.
Haputale is a town in the Uva Province of Badulla District, Sri Lanka, close to the town of Bandarawela. The elevation above sea level is 1431 m. The region is rich in thick biodiversity with countless flora and fauna varieties. In Haputale, where tea plantations cover the hillsides, and where the cemetery of the beautiful Anglican church of St Andrew’s is packed with memories of the colonial past, there is much proof of the legacy of British planters. The mountain ridge on which the city is located shows excellent views of the south coast, and at night you can see the Hambantota lighthouse.

ATTRACTIONS IN BANDARAWELA AND HAPUTALE

LIPTON SEAT VIEW POINT

The name Lipton’s Seat says it all. It’s a famous 1970 m above sea level perspective. Sir Thomas Lipton used to sit and contemplate his plantation with its stony landscape and green tea bushes, this accurate place in the Haputale Mountains overlooking the Dambetenna Tea Estate.
This is situated about 18 kilometers from Haputale (7 kilometers from Dambetenna Tea Factory) under excellent weather conditions; you will be witnessing some incredible panoramic views in the hill country that you would ever discover. Plan your trip to the site a little soon as it may already be cloudy from 10 a.m.
Once you reach the top of Lipton’s Seat, in the perspective of Thomas Lipton himself, you will have a bird’s eye view of the Uva, Sabaragamuwa, Central and Eastern regions. It would be an understatement to say the view is fantastic.
You should be able to find the Handapanagala Lake, the Chandrika Lake, the Udawalawe Lake and the Wedihiti Kanda Mountain Range on a clear day and, if you’re fortunate, the Hambantota Port and it’s fairly surreal.

DAMBATENNE TEA FACTORY

Built by the Scottish tea baron Sir Thomas Lipton in 1890. Dambatenne Tea Factory near Haputale and near the renowned Lipton Seat viewpoint. Now well-known as tea producers from Lipton.
The trip through the works is an education about the procedures engaged in the withering, rolling, fermentation, drying, slicing, sieving and grading of tea. It’s likely the most extensive tea-factory tour around, and you can then taste a best cup of tea from Sri Lanka.

DOWA TEMPLE

A 4m-high standing Buddha cut into the rock face is the highlight of the charming Dowa Temple, 6 km west of the city. The neighboring cave shrine walls are covered with outstanding Sri Lankan-style Buddhist walls, sculpted from strong rock. It is said that during his 14-year exile from Anuradhapura, King Valagamba (Vattajamini Ahhhya) took refuge here in the 1st century BC. Legend also has it that from this temple a secret subterranean tunnel extends all the way to Kandy.

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Habarana

Habarana is a tiny town of Anuradhapura District in Sri Lanka. The place has some mid-range and up restaurants targeted at package visitors and is a point of departure for other more interesting neighboring places. Habarana is a famous tourist destination for safari enthusiasts as it is the starting point for safaris in the neighboring Habarana jungle and the highly populated elephant sanctuary of Minneriya. Elephant back riding in this tiny town is also an attraction. Habarana is located on the primary highway from Colombo to Trincomalee, Polonnaruwa and Batticaloa, close to the ancient rock fortress in Sigiriya. The city’s population is anticipated to be 5000-10,000. The area has some of the best hotels in the country and the greenery and wild life has added value, making the location attractive for tourists.

ATTRACTIONS IN HABARANA

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MINNERIYA NATIONAL PARK

This safari takes you on an exclusive journey through Minneriya National Park, famous for its elephants and wildlife. The two tour choices enable you to choose whether you want to watch wildlife during your morning and evening operations. If you choose the Morning Safari alternatives, your safari will begin at 5:30 a.m.; or if you choose the Evening Safari option at 2:30 p.m.
There are many kinds of soil and development in the park. Wetlands intermingle with agricultural soil and rocky outcrops, and forests stroll with scrublands hand in hand. This also implies that there are quite different kinds of wildlife and birds that reside in or visit the park. If you’re fortunate, you might see a crocodile or even an incredibly rare slim gray loris.
As you watch early in the morning, a small herd of deer can visit the Minneriya reservoir. If you plan your safari in the months of August, September or October, you may be able to see the elephant group called the’ Elephant Gathering’ with its collective number of more than 150 elephants in one location. It is said that the elephants come for this annual meeting from all nearby regions. If you choose the evening safari, which is the best time to see this park, at the end of the day you can also see the elephants taking their daily bath and watch the many distinct types of birds heading off to their nests.

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HIRIWADUNNA VILLAGE TOUR

Join this 2.5-hour trip for the chance to emerge in the true Sri Lankan village’s nature and culture. Start your tour with a Bullock cart ride near the pond of the village and you will experience a boat ride to the next side of the rural village. You can reach the village house after a brief walk in the paddy areas and vegetable cultivation. You can relax and eat a delicious Sri Lankan lunch or snacks in the village house. Then take a trip from Tuk Tuk to the starting point of the trip.
Complete package involves a ride on a Bullock cart, a boat ride, a visit to a village house, a local dinner or snacks and a Tuk-Tuk ride. Bullock cart is Sri Lanka’s first car. In the past, once renowned local royalty mode of transportation. Today, this car has become past-present coordination.
On the Ehelagala lake there is a catamaran boat ride. Next to the lake, which also overlooks the rocks of Sigiriya and Pidurangala, you will cruise to admire the incredible views. You can also join the Boatman if you are interested in rowing the boat. With his craftsmanship and creativity, the gentleman’s hat and the ladies ‘ lovely necklace, he might surprise you. The tiny town on the other hand of the coast will dock at the end of the Tour Boat.
You can watch a true village house’s traditional daily life. If a visit to the paddy field should not be missed, see a garden where endemic vegetables are cultivated. Climb the tree house next to the paddy field where farmers sleep at night and try to keep animals away from the paddy. You can enjoy an easy traditional lunch prepared by a lady from the village using hand-picked vegetables from the plot from the farmer. You can also see how a village female cooks a traditional dinner or a roti if time allows. After dinner there will be a little presentation of how to create a coconut leaves roof and how to use winnowing fan and traditional grinding stone to separate rice seeds from husks and straw.

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Kandy

Kandy is just on 116km (62mi) north east of Colombo. The second biggest town in Sri Lanka and the hill region’s cultural center. Kandy was the island’s capital for about two centuries (until 1815). Visit the renowned “Temple of the Tooth,” or Dalada Maligawa, where you can preserve and ardently reverence what is thought to be a Buddha’s tooth. Then walk around adjacent Kandy Lake and its green surroundings, here’s the Tooth’s Sacred Temple, containing the Buddha’s Tooth Relic. Every year in August or late July, the Relic is drawn in procession around the town based on the stages of the moon–the event that marks one of Sri Lanka’s most dramatic pageants, the Kandy Perahera. There is the last king’s glory in Kandy, still manifest in the splendid chamber, palace, and court yards of the audience. Just four miles from Kandy, Peradeniya, is home to the world’s most beautiful Royal Botanical Gardens. Every tropical and temperate tree and flower is cultivated here, and special houses are too beautiful to be true with orchids and cacti.

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ATTRACTIONS IN KANDY

TEMPLE OF THE TOOTH RELIC (SRI DALADA MALIGAWA)

After Gautama Buddha’s parinirvana, Princess Hemamali and her husband, Prince Dantha, kept the tooth relic in Kalinga and smuggled to the island on the orders of her dad King Guhasiva. During the reign of Sirimeghavanna of Anuradhapura (301-328), they landed on the island in Lankapattana and handed over the tooth relic. Meghagiri Vihara (now Isurumuniya) was enshrined by the king in Anuradhapura. The relic’s safeguard was the monarch’s duty, so over the years the relic’s custody came to symbolize the right to rule.

Reigning monarchs therefore built the tooth relic temples very close to their royal residences, as was the case during the times of the Kingdom of Anuradhapura, the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa, and the Kingdom of Dambadeniya. The relic was housed in Niyamgampaya Vihara during the Gampola Kingdom period. In messenger poems such as Hamsa, Gira, and Selalihini it is reported that the tooth relic temple was located in Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte’s city when Kotte’s Kingdom was established there.

During Kotte’s Dharmapala reign, the relic was held hidden in a grinding stone in Delgamuwa Vihara, Ratnapura. Hiripitiye Diyawadana Rala and Devanagala Rathnalankara Thera brought it to Kandy. King Vimaladharmasuriya I constructed a two-story house to deposit the tooth relic, and the building is now gone. It was brought to Meda Mahanuwara in Dumbara in 1603 when the Portuguese invaded Kandy. It was recovered in the Rajasinha II period and it was reported that the original building was restored or a new temple was built.
Vira Narendra Sinha built the current tooth temple. During Sri Vikrama Rajasinha’s reign, the octagonal Paththirippuwa and moat were added. The construction of the Paththirippuwa is attributed to the royal architect Devendra Moolacharya. It was originally used for recreational activities by the king and was later offered to the relic of the tooth, it now houses the library of the temple.
The temple has been attacked in 1998 by the militant organization Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

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KANDYAN CULTURAL SHOW

This cultural show, held in Kandy town, depicts various forms of Kandyan dancing that was once native to the area but has now spread to different regions of the island. Originating from a dance conducted by Indian shamans who went to the island, Kandyan dance plays a significant part in the culture of Sri Lanka and is a highly anticipated event during the processions of perahera. During the show, you will see several dances depicting the graceful motions of birds and animals that trace their roots back to the ancient ritual known as the Kohomba Kankariya, as well as vigorous acrobatic performances where people execute a sequence of jumping pirouettes and stunts such as plate-spinning and the spectacular ‘ fire walk ‘ that ends the show.

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KANDY LAKE

Kandy Lake, also known as Kiri Muhuda or the Milk Sea, is an artificial lake built in 1807 by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe near the Temple of the Tooth in the heart of the hill town of Kandy, Sri Lanka. It has been reduced in size over the years. It’s a protected lake, prohibited from fishing. Formerly a stretch of paddy fields known as Tigolwela was the beautiful lake in front of the Tooth Temple. King Sri Wickrama Rajasinha transformed it to a pond in 1807. Because in the middle of the Tigolwela there had been a beautiful pond called’ Kiri-muhuda’ (a’ sea of milk’), the lake that was built later was named’ Kiri-muhuda.’ Deveda Moolacharya is regarded as the Kandy Lake architect. The king built a dam for the first time across the paddy fields, starting from the side of Pattiruppuwa (Octogen), where the steps leading to the Mahamaluwa lake (Esplanade) are still visible, stretching across to the Poya-maluwa. The dam, on which a roadway was built, allowed the king to cross over to the Vihare of Malwatte. The lake has numerous local legends and folklore. One such is that the king’s harem used the tiny island in its middle for bathing and was linked to the palace through secret tunnels.

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PINNAWALA ELEPHANT ORPHANAGE

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is an orphanage, nursery and captive breeding ground for wild Asian elephants located in the village of Pinnawala, 13 km northeast of the town of Kegalle in the province of Sabaragamuwa, Sri Lanka. Pinnawala is home to the world’s largest herd of captive elephants. There were 96 elephants living in Pinnawala in 2011, including 43 males and 68 females from 3 generations.

Feeding time

Visitors are completely enamored at feeding time when the younger babies are bottle fed with enormous amounts of infant formula, which they guzzle down in a few seconds. You can watch them feeding at 9.15 a.m., 1.15 p.m. and 5.00 p.m.

Bath time

Bathing is a great pachyderm pleasure, and the nearby wide river allows elephants to bathe twice a day, a regime that is essential for the hygiene, comfort and happiness of an elephant. Bath times are from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m. and from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m.

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BAHIRAVAKANDA VIHARA BUDDHA STATUE

The Bahiravakanda Vihara Buddha statue, with its steps up the back leading to a dramatic perspective over the town, is a literal as well as spiritual highlight of your visit to Kandy. The 88 ft pure-white statue, which contains a gallery showing photos of Buddha’s lives from child to manhood, is part of a tiny, intimate convent on the hillside just outside the town. Building started in 1972, and ten years later the statue, its crowning glory, was finished. The monastery and statue is now an established characteristic of the Kandy tourist path with all the classic accoutrements, including sculptures and traditional historical depictions.

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EMBEKKA DEVALAYA (EMBEKKA TEMPLE)

King Vikramabahu III of Gampola Era (AD 1357-1374) built Embekka Devalaya (Embekka Temple) in Sri Lanka. The devalaya is devoted to Mahasen’s worship, commonly referred to as Kataragama deviyo. Also worshiped at this site is a local deity called Devatha Bandara. The shrine is made up of three sections, “Garagha Sanctum,” “Digge” or “Dancing Hall” and “Hevisi Mandapaya” or “Drummers ‘ Hall.” The Drummers ‘ Hall which, owing to the magnificent wood sculptures of its ornate pillars, has attracted visitors ‘ attention to the site. And its roof with a high pitch.

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GEM MUSEUM & FACTORY

The gem industry in Sri Lanka has a lengthy and colourful history. Sri Lanka, which means Gem Island, was affectionately known as Ratna-Dweepa. The name reflects its natural richness. Marco Polo wrote the island had the world’s best sapphires, topazes, amethysts, and other gems. Ptolemy, the astronomer of the 2nd century, recorded that beryl and sapphire were the cornerstone of the gem industry in Sri Lanka. Records of sailors visiting the island say they brought back “Serendib’s jewels.” Serendib was the ancient name given to the island by middle-eastern and Persian traders who traveled across the Indian Ocean during the 4th and 5th centuries to trade gems from Sri Lanka to the East. Geologically speaking, Sri Lanka is an exceptionally ancient nation. Ninety percent of the island’s rocks are of Precambrian era, between 560 and 2,400 million years ago.
The gems form deposits, eluvial deposits, metamorphic deposits, skarn and calcium-rich rocks in sedimentary residual gems. Nearly all of Sri Lanka’s gem formations are located in the Highland Complex ‘ central high-grade metamorphic terrain. The deposits of gems are classified as sedimentary, metamorphic and magmatic; the most abundant are the sedimentary types. The mineralogy of the deposits of gems varies widely with corundum (sapphire, ruby), chrysoberyl, beryl, spinel, topaz, zircon, tourmaline, and the common garnet among others.
Residual deposits are found mainly in river and stream flood plains. Metamorphic kinds of gems make up 90% of Sri Lanka’s gem deposits. Nearly 25 percent of Sri Lanka’s total land region has been estimated to be possibly gem-bearing, making Sri Lanka one of the nations with the largest density of gem deposits compared to its land mass. You can trail on a sophisticated Gem Museum & Arcade that provides a one-stop shop in Gem Museum, Model Mines, Crafters Workshop and Gem Arcade that you can buy even on your favorite way or budget. Through Sri Lanka customs, the all bought are duty free and likely more cost-effective compared to other nations.

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KANDYAN WOOD CARVING FACTORY

The Sri Lankan Wood Carving industry is completely distinct from what you’ve seen so far. Because traditional craftsmen use traditional techniques and easy traditional tools to materialize these ancient designs. To create them more appealing and the wonder is that even sand papers are not used to smooth them; instead, they use their chisels to smooth them. You can see how those lifeless, shapeless pieces of wood become ornamental elephants, wooden wall hangings, stilt fishermen, figures of animals and people.
These creations have long been decorating many of the area’s hotels and villas. They are built according to the buyer’s taste and satisfaction. So you can get it made by them if you have a design on your head that suits your company, home or any other location. You can order any quantity of design and according to your wish, and you can watch how your order is being processed and you’re going to drop it’s done!
Or if you have any timber shape and want to transform it into some kind of furnishings or any design or decoration that fits your location, they are very smart even in this free art tradition-” Ruk kala “and you can do it and more. It’s their talent. So, visit it, see the difference.

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Kithulgala

In the west of Sri Lanka, Kitulgala is a tiny town. It is in the rainforest of the wet area, which receives two monsoons every year, and is one of the country’s wettest locations. In the first three months of the year, however, it comes alive, particularly in February, the driest month. The Academy Award-winning The Bridge on the Kwai River was filmed on the Kalani River near Kitulgala, although there is now nothing left but the concrete foundations of the bridge (and, supposedly, the submerged train cars that plunged into the climate scene into the river). Also, Kitulgala is a white-water rafting base that begins upstream a few kilometers.

ATTRACTIONS IN KITULGALA

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WHITE WATER RAFTING

Experience White Water Rafting on the scenic river Kelani, covering five main rapids and four minor rapids. For anyone over the age of 10, this activity includes safety gear, contemporary rafts, and our white water rafting instructors will give a thorough safety briefing in advance. The covered distance is about 5 km. You will be enchanted by the river and its surroundings, with a memorable experience during your Kitulagala White Water Rafting Tour.

RAIN FOREST CAMPING ADVENTURES

There are plenty of camping possibilities inside the jungles of Kitulgala that can be combined with White Water Rafting, Bird Watching, Jungle Walks, River Bathing and many adventure activities.
If you’re searching for an adventure and recreation base near Colombo, Kithulgala is THE PLACE. Being so near to Colombo if you’re staying for one night, you’d be able to do a lot of adventure and recreation operations like White Water Rafting, Bird Watching, Jungle Walking, Visiting pre-historic caves, River Bathing, Waterfall Trekking, Natural Ponds Adventure Jumps and slides.

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Galle Fort

Galle is a town on southwest shore in Sri Lanka. Stone sea walls, expanded by the Dutch, surround car-free roads with architecture that reflects the rule of Portuguese, Dutch and Britain. Notable structures are the Dutch Reformed Church of the 18th century.

Galle Lighthouse is on the southeastern tip of the fort. The door leads to the National Maritime Museum, with seafaring and marine life exhibits including a whale skeleton and shipwreck-saved objects. In a 1656 building, the Galle National Museum displays artifacts from southern Sri Lanka such as ritual masks and woodcarvings and colonial-era items. The Galle International Stadium hosts cricket matches with views of the Indian Ocean just outside the northern fortifications.
The fort Galle is a world heritage site and is Asia’s biggest surviving fortress constructed by European occupants. While Galle has always been a major trading center, hence the fortifications, it is also known today for its combination of tourist attractions, including boutiques, restaurants and restaurants, many owned by foreigners, as is a third of the buildings.

ATTRACTIONS IN GALLE


GALLE LIGHTHOUSE

Galle Lighthouse (also known as Pointe de Galle Light) is an onshore lighthouse operated and maintained by the Sri Lankan Ports Authority in Galle, Sri Lanka.
This is the oldest light station in Sri Lanka dating back to 1848, but the initial British-built 24.5-meter (80 ft) lighthouse was about 100 meters (330 ft) from the present site; however, it was demolished by fire in 1934. The current lighthouse of 26.5 meters (87 ft) was built here in 1939. The initial light was provided with a glass prism lens floating in a mercury tub (to decrease friction) and was powered by a weight driven machine.


NATIONAL MUSEUM OF FORT

The National Museum of Galle is one of national museums in Sri Lanka. It is located in the oldest remaining Dutch building in the Galle fort, Galle, a single-story colonnaded Dutch building built in 1656 as the commissariat store for the Dutch garrison at the fort. It subsequently served as a billiard room for the adjacent New Oriental Hotel (now the Amangalla Hotel). The building was restored by the National Museums Department and opened on March 31, 1986.


DUTCH REFORMED CHURCH

The current building originally constructed in 1640, the present building dates from 1752. Its floor is paved with gravestones from Dutch cemeteries, while other remarkable characteristics include the organ and an imposing pulpit made of calamander wood, with a large hexagonal canopy topping it. You may find the friendly attendant who will probably point out the (slightly bizarre) sculpted wooden monument devoted to Abraham Samlant, a former commander of Galle–the small cotton shirt is said to be the one in which he was baptized.


OLD GATE

On the outer side, a beautifully sculpted British arms coat tops the entrance to the Old Gate. Inside, the letters VOC, standing for Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie (Dutch East India Company), are etched in the stone with the date 1669, flanked by two lions and with a cockerel topping it, also served as a spice warehouse was a section of fortifications here.


MARINE ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM

This spacious maritime museum occupies a huge old spice warehouse from the late 17th century constructed by the Dutch. Originally part of the primary gateway to the Fort, the structure is still part of its walls. The scene is set by an introductory video presentation and interactive displays illuminate the maritime past of the city, including the many shipwrecks in the surrounding waters of Galle. It includes two levels that snake across the walls of the town.


FLAG ROCK

Flag Rock was once a Portuguese bastion at the southern end of the Fort. Today, catching a sunset is readily the most common location. You may see daredevil local people jumping from the rocks into the water during daylight hours. Many sellers are selling healthy street food like fresh mango from carts with chili powder.


DUTCH HOSPITAL

This large, colonnaded colonial landmark dates back to the 18th century and is now fully restored and home to countless upmarket boutiques and restaurants. Its size was essential as both the trip to Ceylon and tropical life proved very unhealthy to the Dutch, who died from multiple illnesses and tropical heat in droves. The upper balcony offers fantastic opinions of the bay.


MAIN GATE

The Main Gate in the wall’s northern stretch is a relatively latest addition–it was constructed in 1873 by the British to manage the heavier traffic flow into the ancient city. This part of the wall, which was the most intensely fortified because it faced the land, was originally built by the Portuguese with a moat and then substantially enlarged by the Dutch who divided the wall into separate Star, Moon and Sun Bastions in 1667.

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Ella

Ella is a tiny town in Uva Province’s Badulla District, Sri Lanka. It is located at an altitude of 1,041 meters (3,415 ft) above sea level, about 200 kilometers (120 mi) east of Colombo. The region is rich in biodiversity, dense with many flora and fauna varieties. Ella is surrounded by mountains and tea plantations covered with cloud forests. Because of its altitude, the city has a cooler environment than the surrounding plains. The Ella Gap allows views across the southern plains of Sri Lanka

ATTRACTIONS IN ELLA

THE NINE ARCH BRIDGE

This bridge is located 2 km from the town of Ella on the “Passara” highway between railway stations “Ella” and “Demodara.” This name is used as there are 9 arches in the bridge. It is also known as “Ahas Nawaya Palama” (9 Skies Bridge) and is 300 feet long and 25 feet wide, nearly 3100 feet above sea level. Due to the architectural ingenuity of the bridge and the abundant greenery in the neighboring hillsides, the surrounding region has seen a continuous rise in tourism.
It is one of the best examples of colonial-era railway construction in the country. The construction of the bridge is generally attributed to a local Ceylonese builder, P. K. Appuhami, in consultation with British engineers. As a result, the work came to a standstill, leading the locals build the bridge with stone bricks and cement, but without steel.


ELLA ROCK

The most rewarding and taxing walk around Ella is the climb of the magnificent Ella Rock that stands out over the village. It’s a total of about a four-hour walk, with an exciting combination of railroad track, tea plantation, and some steep things close the top. Carry food, water, and nice footwear, and be careful when the paths get slippery–and also be conscious that mist and rain can rise rapidly to the top. There are several feasible routes; most of them start by following the railway line south out of the village, then one of the distinct paths that hit the rock.


RAVANA ELLA WATER FALLS

The Ravana Falls is famous sightseeing attraction in Sri Lanka. It currently ranks as one of the widest falls in the country. This waterfall measures an oval-shaped concave rock outcrop about 25 m (82 ft) in height and cascades. During the local wet season, the waterfall becomes what is said to look like an areca flower with fading petals. But this is not the case in the dry season, where water flow dramatically decreases. The falls are component of the Wildlife Sanctuary of Ravana Ella and are situated 6 km (3.7 mi) from Ella’s local railway station.


RAVANA’S CAVE

These tunnels clearly demonstrate King Ravana’s architectural brilliance. The tunnels served as a fast transportation through the mountains as well as a secret passage. All the major towns, airports and milk farms were networked. A close look at these tunnels shows that they are man-made structures rather than natural ones. There are also existing tunnel mouths in Ishtripura in Welimada, Senapitiya in Halagala, Ramboda, Labookelle, Wariyapola in Matale, and Seetha Kotuwa in Hasalaka and many more locations.


LITTLE ADAM’S PEAK

The Small Sripada (Little Adam’s Peak) mountain range in the Badulla, Ella region has become an attraction for local and international tourists. The region is visited by a big amount of individuals to admire its picturesque beauty. Small Sripada is about two kilometers from the town of Ella. From this place you can also see Kataragama and the hundreds of kilometers away beach of Hambantota. Also situated close this location are the Namunukula, Poonagala and Narangala mountain ranges. Some of the Small Sripada’s mounting range of about 10 acres is full of biodiversity.

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Dambulla

Dambulla is a town located 148 km (92 miles) north-east of Colombo and 72 km (45 miles) south of Kandy, in the Matale, central province of Sri Lanka. It is the center of vegetable production in the country due to its place at a main intersection. The area’s main attractions include Sri Lanka’s biggest and best preserved cave temple complex and the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium, renowned for being constructed in just 167 days. The region also boasts the biggest rose quartz mountain range in South Asia, and the Iron wood forest, or Na Uyana Aranya. Ibbankatuwa prehistoric burial site near Dambulla cave temple complexes is the newest archeological site of important historical significance discovered in Dambulla, which is situated within 3 km (1.9 miles) of the cave temples offering proof of the existence of indigenous civilization.

ATTRACTIONS IN DAMBULLA

DAMBULLA CAVE TEMPLE

Dambulla cave temple also known as Dambulla Golden Temple, is a Sri Lankan World Heritage Site (1991), located in the country’s central portion. The site is 148 km (92 mi) east of Colombo and 72 km (45 mi) north of Kandy. Dambulla is the biggest and best preserved temple cave complex in Sri Lanka. The rock towers 160 m above the surrounding plains. In the surrounding region there are over 80 documented caves. Major attractions spread across five caves containing statues and paintings. Gautama Buddha and his life are related to these paintings and statues. There are a total of 153 Buddha statues, three Sri Lankan king sculptures, and four god and goddess statues. Vishnu and the Ganesha are among the latter. The walls cover 2,100 square meters (23,000 square ft). Depictions on the cave walls include the demon Mara’s temptation and the first sermon of Buddha. Before the arrival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, prehistoric Sri Lankans would have lived in these cave complexes as there are burial sites with human skeletons about 2700 years ancient in this region, close the Dambulla cave complexes in Ibbankatuwa.


KANDALAMA LAKE

The Kandalama lake was praised as the most beautiful lake in Sri Lanka as well as a wonderful feat of engineering, an enormous man-made reservoir constructed and expanded by the ancient kings of Ceylon. At 4.8 km (3mi) long and 2.3 km (1.4mi) broad, with a 102sq km (39.4sq mi) catchment region, it contains 33 million cubic meters of water used to irrigate the surrounding countryside, especially the paddy fields. The tank was created by a dam 69 ft (21 m) high and 5,200 ft (1,600 m) which, according to a British chronicler, Charles Pridham, “is formed with large hewn stone masses, confronted with rocks eight or ten feet thick at the base, positioned like steps and laid in periodic layers to move which by pure physical force must have needed the joint labor of thousands.” In 1821, British Ceylon’s John Davy wrote: “The lake of Kandalama is best example of the kind of work, that I have ever seen.”

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Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay is a bay located on the Indian Ocean in the dry area of the southwest coast of Sri Lanka and a historic settlement of the ancient Batticaloa territory. The bay is 117 kilometers (73 miles) north of Batticaloa, 320 kilometers (200 miles) north of Colombo, and about 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) north of Pottuvil’s market town. The primary settlement in the region, locally known as Ullae, is predominantly Muslim, but to the south of the village there is a substantial population of Sri Lankan Tamil and Sinhala, as well as a number of global migrants, mostly from Europe and Australia. While fishing has traditionally dominated the local economy, in latest years tourism has risen quickly in the region. The literal Tamil translation of Arugam Kudah is “Dactylon Bay of Cynodon.” Owing to several quality breaks in the region, tourism in Arugam Bay is dominated by surf tourism, but the local beaches, lagoons, historic temples and neighboring Kumana National Park also attract visitors.

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