In the central and southern parts of Sri Lanka there are several Mountains and Peaks that are highly ecological and rich in bio diversity. These mountains are preserved as forests and are the starting points of many rivers. The Sri Pada mountain is Sri Lanka’s holy peak where people make pilgrims to worship foot print of lord Buddha.
The Hill Country is exceptionally beautiful, with crystal clear waterfalls and tea plantations dotted throughout. The temperature in this region stays cool all year round, in an atmosphere of early morning Spring. Everything is green and lush and the landscape is elevated with layers of grass knolls and jagged waterfalls with dense mountain forest clinging to the upper slopes. The days drift by in the hill country with not much to do but drink tea (in abundance) and absorb the serenity and breathtaking walks and views.
There are several little towns that are certainly worth a visit, such as Nuwara Eliya. There are also some majestic feats of nature to explore, namely Worlds End and Adams Peak.
Pidurutalagala Mountain in Sri Lanka (literally translating to Straw Plateau Rock), which is also called Mount Pedro in in English is the tallest mountain on the island and situated in the Central Province, north – north east to the town of Nuwara Eliya . It is also the only ultra prominent peak of the island, and one of only 1515 ultra prominent peaks around the world. An ultra prominent peak is a mountain that has topographic prominence (height of the peak’s summit above the lowest contour line encircling it up to the highest summit) above 1500 meters. Mount Pedro has a prominence and elevation of 2524m (8281 feet) (8292 feet according to the Survey Department).
The mountain of Pidurutalagala has a forest reserve surrounding it. The forest underwent damage five years ago in a forest fire, causing the loss of some 3 acres of forest. However, the damage is being repaired now with the assistance of nature and human intervention. The area of the mountain and forest reserve has been designated an ultra high security zone due to the summit being used to house the communications array of the Sri Lankan Government and the Armed Forces of the country.
The point of Lipton’s Seat is reached by climbing for around 7km surrounded by peaceful green tea plantations and an occasional colorful tea plucker. There are two routes available; one from the Nayabedda estate in Bandarawela, and the second through the Dambatenna estate in Haputale. Both routes have entrances marked with sign boards and narrow paved roads. Some parts of the road even have some of the original stone constructions from the British era of Ceylon, and hence are worth seeing from a historical point of view. The climb takes about two and a half hours on average, after a visitor reaches the hill top.
From Lipton’s Seat the Uva, Sabaragamuwa, Central and Eastern provinces spread out from before the feet of the viewer in a display rivaling that of the famed World’s End observation point. Visible from the hill top are 7 provinces along with sights such as Handapanagala Lake, Chandrika Lake, Udawalawe Lake, Wedihitikanda Mountains, and even the Hambanthota harbor from the Southern coast.
For those who wish for even more stunning view or photographers wishing to snap a picture of nature at its best, Lipton’s Seat is best visited early in the morning before sunrise. The change of colors as the sun shows its face, as the thick mist flees the heat revealing the carpet of greens and browns spread out below, is a spectacular sight. There is also a very good chance to see basket bearing tea pluckers making their way to work. However, for those visitors who find it hard to wake early, making the hilltop before 10 am should be sufficient to get a reasonably clear view.
Visiting Liptons Seat is free for all, in contrast with World’s End which requires a payment. In addition there are a few other attractions along the way including Catherine’s Seat and Lemathota waterfall. Catherine’s Seat is in the Nayabedda estate and provides an excellent view of Bandarawela , Diyatalawa and the Uva valley all the way to the Namunukula mountain range. Lemathota waterfall is on the Dambatenna route, though it is not exactly a major attraction
LITTLE ADAM'S PEAK
Don’t defiance the beautiful tourism site in Sri Lanka, Little Adams Peak whether considering the word ‘Little’,it is named after the sacred Adams Peak (Sri Pada –where the foot print of Lord Buddha is preserved) regarding the similarity between the two mountains. Therefore the mountain was called as Little Adams Peak.
“Punchi Sri Pada” is another name for this peak. It is 1141 m in height. Little Adam’s Peak attracts many travelers who come to Sri Lanka. Gradually with an easy hike up to the mountain of Little Adams Peak you can consummation a worth panoramic view. You have to walk through lush green tea plantations, waterfalls and paddy fields while enjoying the sceneries.
It will be priceless if you could visit the place in the morning when the clouds roll in. Further places like Little Adams Peak deliberates ‘How far Sri Lanka is worth and rich with beautiful natural destinations of Sri Lankan tourism’. It will feel like a neck exercise for the visitors as you have to rotate your body to seek the views outstanding for 360 degrees.
Ella town is a small town among the up county destinations consisted of waterfalls, caves and geographically significant places. One such place is Adams Peak, figured in Pyramid Shape Mountain which stands opposite of the Ella rock. Be aware not to harm the plants, flowers and animals that will meet on your journey up to the mountain.
You could see the people who are plucking and collecting tea leaves, working in their estates. It will take around 35-45 min to reach to the top of the mountain on a zig- zag path. Thus it is an ideal place to watch sun rise in the morning. With prodigious views of as far as Ella rock and down to the gap will be gorgeous.
It is a must to say that ‘don’t forget to wake up early in the morning and climb the mountain before it gets hot’ otherwise you will feel tired. Although take a bottle of water with you.If you could have a cup of tea or something you may feel better on your way back to the hotel or home. Its wise to keep in mind that if you want to take a photograph with the tea plucker working in the tea plantations, they will ask money.
The Riverston Peak in Sri Lanka can be reached by travelling, about 30km away from the Matale town, down the Matale – Girandurukotte Road. This secretive windy road, with its sharp hairpin turns, offers some of the best views to the surrounding countryside; to the extent that it is called the Mini World’s End. Though it is very popular among locals, the area is comparatively unknown amongst mainstream tourists. Therefore the area offers up the natural beauty of Sri Lanka; fresh, green and unpolluted by vendors, tourists, garbage and unsightly buildings.
With climates very similar to the Hortons Plains, where the World’s End is located, Riverston trek also offers two graceful waterfalls Sera Ella and Bambarakiri Ella. Sera Ella also has some conveniently located rock seats from which a visitor can enjoy the refreshing cold spray of misty droplets. The nearby freshwater river, Thelgamu Oya, can be used for quick cooling dip or even just a refreshing splash before or after a long arduous trek.
The trek is about two and a half kilometres one way, and shouldn’t take more than a healthy hour or two at most. It runs a section known as the Pittawala Paththana and leads to the Riverston Peak. The countryside along the trek has views of the terraced paddy fields, unique to some mountainous regions around the world, and that of the beautiful green Central Highlands.
The Riverston Peak features a sheer 300m drop to stunning misty views of the nearby Knuckles Mountain Range and Thelgamu river valley. The peak, with its peaceful and beautiful surroundings, is also a great place to meditate and relax on your holiday to Sri Lanka. The Riverston trek is a great opportunity for nature lovers and photographers who want a few jaw-dropping clicks.
Ritigala is home to 70 rock caves that were believed to had been inhabited since the first century BC. Mahavamsa, the great historical chronicle of Sri Lanka narrates that Ritigala was known by the name of “arittha-pabbata” during the reign of Pandukabhaya (377-307 BC), the third king of Sri Lanka. Since then Ritigala had been, at intervals, a sanctuary for the kings at war against the Dravidian invaders to the island till the 7th century: King Dutugemunu (161-137 BC) and King Jetthatissa in the seventh century.
From the early days of Buddhism, monks had been living in natural caves or rock shelters. Rock inscriptions discovered at Ritigala indicate that gradually, the sanctuary became a monastic retreat for hermit (Pamsukulika) monks. An inscription found at the site records that the Ritigala monastery was founded by King Lanji Tissa (119 – 109 BC) who also dedicated a reservoir to the monastery The monastery complex built with the tradition of Padhanaghara Parivena was endowed by King Sena the first (846-866 AD) for the benefit of Pansukulika monks who practiced extreme austerity. By the 10th-12th century AD however Ritigala seems to have been abandoned by the hermit monks, taken over by the jungle and forgotten by the populace.
It is the ruins of this monastery that King Sena I (846-866 AD) built for the Pansakulika monks that the modern pilgrims see today. The Archaeological Department has sensitively restored many of the ruins.