Hill Country

Our trip through the Sri Lankan hill country started at Kandy (500m). We climbed through soft rain and fog to the cold Nuwara Eliya (2000m), stopping en-route to visit a tea factory and enjoy a nice cup of tea – complicated business this tea processing.

From Nuwara Eliya to Ella (1100m) we travelled by train. As we descended, the weather cleared allowing views of the tea growing plantations. For 2 days we stayed at the new 98 Acres Resort, built on top of a hill in the middle of a tea plantation. It was very quiet with wonderful views from our balcony. We enjoyed this place.

We walked a few kilometers from Ella along the railway track in time to see the train crossing the 9 Arch Bridge, then walked another couple of kilometers to Demodara where the track makes a 360 degree turn.  We caught the old rattler back.

One of the waterfalls as we climbed up from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya

Nuwara Eliya, known as “Little England” was an English hill station; the old houses are now hotels

Our guide, Anton, pointing out some of the fresh vegetables at the local market

The 10k of road to the Nuwara Eliya train station was terrible so we took a Tuk Tuk …

… It was a bit bumpy!

As we descended in the train, the weather improved giving us some nice views …

… of the tea plantations amongst the gum trees

All tea is hand picked

Tea flowers are not used

Our travelling companions on the train to Ella

Ella means waterfall in Sinhalese

Bullocks plough the fields …

… to produce the crops for the Ella roadside market

Pepper is a very popular addition to the curries

Young monk drying pepper in the sun

Flower of the cardamom bush

Boy waiting for the train

The new train crosses the 9 Arch Bridge near Ella

The old train appears from the 360 degree turn climbing tunnel beneath Demodara

Rice is grown in terraced fields on the mountain valleys

16th Century bridge wooden on the footpath from Kandy to Bogoda (thanks Anton)

Dawn from our balcony at 98 Acres Lodge, followed by ...

… a Sri Lankan breakfast - string hoppers with 3 different curries