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Kandy/ Peradeniya Botanical Garden
KANDY – The hill capital is another “World Heritage Site”. It was the last stronghold of the Sinhalese Kings during the Portuguese, Dutch and British rule and finally ceded to the British in 1815 after an agreement. To the Buddhists of Sri Lanka and the World, Kandy is one of the most sacred sites as it is the home of the “Dalada Maligawa” – Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha. Close by are the remains of the Royal Palace “Maha Wasala”, “Palle Wasala” – where the Queens stayed-now used for the National Museum, “Meda Wasala” where other close relatives lived, Audience Hall, Natha Devala and Vishnu Devala are situated close by. The Bathing Pavilion “Ulpenge” is by the Lake and in the Center of the lake is the Island called “Kiri Samudraya” Milk white ocean used by the kings as the summerhouse. KANDY PERADENIYA ROYAL BOTANICAL GARDEN – 147 acres in extent; Started in 1374 as a pleasure garden of the King of Gampola and Kandy. There are more than 5, 000 species of trees, plants and creepers. Some rare and endemic as well as flora from the tropical world are found in the gardens. Spice Garden and Orchid House are popular with tourists. There are 5 Palm avenues beautifying the gardens, the earliest and tallest Palm Avenue Royal Palm Avenue was planted in 1905 and the Double Coconuts from the Seashells Island, with the largest seed of all plants in the world is one such avenue.
Kandy/ Nuwara Eliya
NUWARA ELIYA – The “ Little England” of Sri Lanka, is set against beautiful backdrops of Mountains, Valleys, Waterfalls and Tea Plantations. It is supposed to be one of the coolest places in the Island, but it is just like an English spring day, although the temperature does drop at night. All around Nuwara Eliya you will see evidence of the British influence, houses like country cottages or Queen Ann style mansions. The Victoria Park, in the middle of the town, is lovely place for a stroll or a picnic and is also good for Birding as you get some rare birds in this park. Seasons may be absent elsewhere in Sri Lanka, but here you can read them by the flowers, which bloom in the spring March to May and fall August and September . These are the “seasons” when low-country folk flock to Nuwara Eliya to escape the sea level heat and humidity. HORTON PLAINS NATIONAL PARK – 20 miles 32Km from Nuwara Eliya via Ambewela and Pattipola, is the Horton Plains only 3160 hectares in extent. Known to Sri Lankans as Mahaeliya, it became Horton Plains after Sir Robert Horton, British Governor from 1831-1837. Horton Plains became a Nature Reserve in 1969 and upgraded as National Park in 1988 due to its unique watershed and bio-diversity values. Its flora has high level of endemism. The hills are covered with diverse wet low evergreen forest with even large trees grown flattened to the ground on the higher windswept slopes. Horton Plains harbours 52 species of resident birds and 11 species of migrant birds. More than 2, 000 to 3, 000 Sambhur, Bear Monkey, Leopard, Barking Deer, Giant Squirrel, Fishing Cat, Wild Boar and Hares roam in the forests and grasslands but only seldom they could be seen other than the Sambhur in the evening and morning. This is the only National Park where visitors could walk their own in the designated tracks. WORLD’S END – is at Horton Plains. Horton Plains is the Sri Lanka’s highest plateau at an elevation of 7, 200 ft. the central mountains and is known as the “Cloud Forest”. This incredible view at the spite aptly named “Worlds End” is the finest in all Sri Lanka. The terrific escarpment drops vertically for about 1, 000ft and falls away almost as steeply for another 4, 000ft. In the morning a crescent of silver of the Indian Ocean rims the horizon some 50 miles to the south.
Kandy/ Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage/ Bentota
PINNAWELA ELEPHANT ORPHANAGE - Approximately 55 miles from Colombo, off the Colombo – Kandy road is Pinnawela, where an orphanage was started in 1975 to house the abandoned and the wounded elephants. The number of elephants has increased to more than 65 now; including Baby Elephants brought from ious parts, as well as some of the more than 25 babies born, as result of the captive breeding programme. The best time to visit is the feeding time from 0915 hours – 0945 hours and 1415 hours – 1445 hours and the bathing time from 1000 hours – 1100 hours and 1500 hours – 1600 hours when all the elephants are taken to the river close by. BENTOTA - Water sports are the most popular activities in Bentota. Bentota beach is ideal for everything ranging from jet skiing and wakeboarding to surfing and diving. Dive sites like the Canoe Rock and South Reef give an insight into the depths of Bentota's crystal blue waters. The Hundirangala dive site is an excellent spot for night dives. One of the curious activities here is paddling on a glass boat to view the corals beneath. Surfing is excellent along the East coast, near Trincomalee and Aragum Bay. Cruising along the Bentota River is another popular activity during the day. Baby crocodiles are a common sight along Bentota beach. You can carry one for a photograph, but the experience might not be as easy as it looks!
GALLE – Sri Lanka’s most historically interesting town is Galle. It was a major port until about 100 years, but today still handles shipping and sailing boats in the natural harbor. Stroll around the lighthouse and harbor or visit the old town where you can see the traditional lace makers and wood carvers and purchase some the finest souvenirs.
MADHU RIVER BOAT SAFARI - Take a magical speed-boat ride down the beautiful Madu River, a wetland estuary spreading over 900 hectares of which 770 hectares is covered with water and inhabited with 64 islands. The boat ride is a wonderful way to take a closer look at this complex wetland ecosystem; a world heritage site protected by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands being one of the last wetlands in Sri Lanka to contain a pristine mangrove forest. Journey past massive mangrove forests, glide under the canopy of the forest tunnels as they curve playfully towards the watercourse. Take in the unique biodiversity of the Madu River and its surrounding islands that boasts of hundreds of birds, plants, fish and animals. There’s plenty more to do; quench your thirst with a refreshing drink of King Coconut Water and then proceed towards the Buddhist Monastery, see how Kraal fishing is carried out, how Ceylon Cinnamon is peeled and enjoy some ‘fish therapy’ as they playfully nibble your feet at the ‘fish spa’. If it’s later in the evening watch the fishermen in their canoes lighting lanterns on traps that catch prawn and other shellfish. It’s certainly going to be a memorable day-out on the serene waters of the unforgettable Madu River!
COLOMBO – A drive through the city taking you to the busy commercial areas as well as the tree-lined residential, Cinnamon Gardens. Visit Fort, the former British administrative center and military garrison, Sea Street – the Goldsmith’s quarters in the heart of Pettah, the Bazzar area, where is also a Hindu Temple with elaborate stone carving and the Dutch Church of Wolfendhal dating back to 1749. The historic Dawatagaha Mosque and the former Eye Hospital are two buildings in Cinnamon Gardens worth looking at. Also visit the BMICH, see the replica of Avukana Buddha and Indipendence Square, Archade, Dutch Hospital ect.
Shopping in Colombo which will include clothing, Jewelry & accessories e. g. : House of fashion, ODEL, Factory outlet, Gem arcades, Shopping Molls & etc. . Enjoy night life in Colombo
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