Thinking of visiting the Indian island nation? Here’s how to make your trip one you’ll never forget.
1. Climb Sigiriya, the Lion Rock
2. Explore the temples
3. Travel by train
If you’ve stopped to explore Sri Lanka’s capital, Kandy, then hop on a train from there to Ella and journey through the lush, green mountains. Originally built and used to transport tea and coffee to the ports, the scenic train route is now a tourist attraction in its own right. Grab a window seat and a bag of freshly sliced pineapple sprinkled with salted chilli to enjoy while looking out for tea pickers and hikers climbing Adam’s Peak.
4. Stay at Chena Hunts by Uga Escapes
Wish your safari could last even longer? Why not check into Chena Huts which sits within Yala National Park. The luxurious and unique retreat is home to plush cabins which nestle amongst dunes and trees at the ocean’s edge. Take a dip in your own private plunge pool, book a massage at the resort’s spa and then head to the beach restaurant for incredible food and views. If you’re lucky you might be joined by an elephant or two.
5. Visit Little England
At an altitude of 6,128 ft you’ll find the city of Nuwara Eliya which is also affectionately known as ‘Little England’ due to its cooler climate and colonial architecture. The city was originally founded by Samuel Baker and became a retreat for British tea planters. The city is now home to a leisure park that surrounds the lake as well as being home to a golf course and multiple horse-racing events. Make sure you visit the Grand Hotel and Town Post Office – ideal if you’re feeling a little homesick.
6. Go on safari
If you’re lucky, you might pass an Indian elephant on the open roads of Sri Lanka (that and dozens of monkeys), but for guaranteed sightings we recommend getting up early and going on a safari within Yala National Park. The site is home to more than 300 Indian elephants, mugger and saltwater crocodiles, sloth bears and wild water buffalos, and boasts the highest leopard densities in the world – plus hundreds of species of birds, monkeys and snakes.
7. Spend a night at Hill Rise
In the mood for some unadulterated luxury? Book yourself into Hill Rise in Nuwara Eliya and curl up on the deep and fluffy sofas while enjoying a perfectly brewed cup of tea. Head out into the garden for spectacular views across Lake Gregory or take a long bath before retiring to your four-poster bed.
8. Tour a tea plantation
Why not finish your trip by heading into the hills and going on a tea tour? Find out exactly how your cuppa is made before admiring the lush, verdant views of the country and tasting a range of green, herbal and traditional breakfast teas with scones and cakes. There are plenty dotted about throughout the country, all as equally impressive as the next.
From: Harper’s BAZAAR UK