06 Sep 2014

Sri Lanka: Highlands by gofargetlost

2/5

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A sleepy village purposely built on tourism, Ella is everybody's favourite hill station here in Lanka and for a few good reasons. One is the excellent walking that you can do in just about any direction out of the main road. Another one I could think of is the pleasant weather. You can be as easygoing as you like, chilling all morning in your room that overlooks the spectacular Ella Gap or spend the whole day on your foot, walking through tea plantations, temples and viewpoints.

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Ella is a town made for walking. There are so many awesome trails to keep yourself busy around the area. I went hiking to Mini Adam's Peak (the big one is in Hatton) this morning with a 5am early start to see the sunrise at the top. I've been on quite a few treks and this one easily makes it my favourite so far. Passing through a sprawling tea estate and ending with a challenging climb up to the peak, I hoped for the sun to come out however the clouds were too thick. The views up there were stunning though.

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What is Sri Lanka without tea? It wouldn't ever be the same as it is now hadn't the colonisation happened. Well, there would be coffee plantations instead but we all know tea tastes better and much more good for you. I'm no tea expert but the stuff they've got growing here is top notch. I really enjoyed the cup of ceylon black tea with just a touch of milk and a teaspoon of sugar I had this afternoon. Had to buy some of it to take back home.

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Built by the Brits in the 1920's, this section of the Badulla - Ella line is popular for its old architecture. I got here by walking on the train tracks from Ella Railway station. Keeping alert for oncoming trains, whenever they sound the warning horn, you simply step to the side of the track to avoid getting run over. The historical bridge is just right at the other end of a dark tunnel.