Thursday 18 June 2015

Sri Lanka so far...

It's been 3 days so far and I've taken 2 flights, a van ride, a train ride and several Tuk Tuks to get me to the amazing places I have been and experienced. The Sri Lankans I have met along the way so far are kind and spiritual. 

First stop was Kandy. A city full of hustle and bustle with vibrant colours and characters. Out of the hotel balcony everything looked so calm and like nothing I have seen before.

I spent that evening chilling. Literally suspended from the roof after the long flights. Just taking in the experience. 

The next day we went to the botanical gardens and the grand Buddha on the top of the hill. Standing in front of the Buddha felt very humbling. I spent a while up there, looking over the city and feeling blessed being there. 

Later I went to see some Kandyan dancing. A really awesome show beside the beautiful Temple of Tooth showing the Sri Lankan culture through dance and music. 

A walk back around the lake to the hotel was fairly enlightening. I met a new creature - a monitor lizard! Very cool. I didn't go too close.

After a quick stop over and a whirlwind taste of Kandy, it was off to the train station for the journey to Ella. 

I've never been on a train before that you can swing from the doorways to take in the views. Literally the most breathtaking train journey I have ever taken! 

6 hours later I arrive at Ella train station. A short 800 metre hill climb with the boards and luggage and Mountain Heavens welcomes us with open arms. More importantly the view is indescribable. I honestly don't think I have ever seen anywhere as beautiful! Room with a view doesn't even describe it! 

After a super tasty curry and a great nights sleep, best brekkie anyone could ask for before a day filled with adventure...

It was the tea plantation as a first stop - a tour of the factory. The process is amazing and tasting afterwards. Being the tea fiend that I am, several purchases were made! 

Next up, a hike up Little Adam's Peak which overlooks Ella rock. Good thigh workout that's for sure! Plus at the top, you feel on top of the world and definitely in the clouds ❤️

Next up was the Nine Arch Bridges! Making tracks and dodging a couple of trains was required to get to this place and not the easiest when one member of the party has a broken knee but we did conquer! 

Sanjay whizzed us back in the Tuk Tuk to stop number 4 of the day, Rawuna waterfall. Absolutely mind blowing. Of course I wanted to hike as high up as I could so a local guide took me up while GC had to stay down at the foot. I battled bamboo, rocks, monkeys and was crawling at one point but getting to the mid point of the waterfall was so worth it. Bathing in it surpassed all awesomeness though and the views! Oh the views! 

Rawuna temple is a short Tuk Tuk ride away from the falls and I really wanted to stop by. Tucked away in the lush mountains is a house of monks with their nearby temple of worship. So peaceful and tranquil and again taking the time out of my day to thank God for all the things in my life that I am so lucky and blessed for but also to appreciate another religion and the beauty and depth of Buddhism. Inside the temple was beautiful with hand carvings and paintork on the ceiling. Reclining Buddha to the left. 
Ella is a very special place. It's definitely stolen a piece of my heart. Time for dinner as I sit taking in the views and blogging this entry. Tomorrow is time to head to Arugam Bay and I'm so excited to see what the Sri Lankan waves have to offer! 

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