The Real Hill Station of Sri Lanka


Nine Arch Bridge

Photo of The Real Hill Station of Sri Lanka by Ryan

Under the gaze of a tropical sun, the exquisite sand beaches and placid blue waters of Sri Lanka unfold. The flavors of coconut and abundant seafood conspire with ever-friendly locals to shape the most exquisite beach holiday destinations. Add stopovers at the seaside colonial fort city of Galle, and whale and dolphin watching tours down the coast.

Variety is the spice of this island nation. Further east, in the rainforests and open grasslands of Yala national park, you’re sure to spot elephants and crocodiles, among numerous other birds and beasts. A little to the north is the hill station of Nuwara Eliya, a place of swirling mists and verdant tea estates, memorable with every cup of Ceylon tea you will ever consume. In the mountains at the center of the country, Kandy is Sri Lanka’s cultural capital, and home to one of Buddhism’s holiest temples. Before heading back north to the capital Colombo, stop and climb the rock fortress of Sigiriya, the Lion Rock rising from forested plains.

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Nuwera Eliya :

Sri Lanka’s very own “Little England”, this is decidedly a trip to a surrealistic hill station with swirling mists and tumbling waterfalls! Nuwara Eliya exudes fresh air and charm by the gallons! Home to the country’s fragrant tea plantations that were once owned by British and Scottish planters—this Sinhalese highland is to be seen to be believed. Built by the English along the lines of their homeland, the emerald hamlet is still home to Victorian gardens, sprawling colonial bungalows, and golfing greens. Fill your lungs with fresh highland air, enjoy the mild and breezy climate, take long walks, and immerse yourself in the genteel ambiance.

Photo of The Real Hill Station of Sri Lanka 1/4 by Ryan
Nuwera Eliya

You could trek down the area’s many wooded trails, visit a local tea plantation or rent a bike for an energetic ride along the hills. Enjoy a panoramic hill-top view, as you settle down to a ‘proper high tea’ spread out for your pleasure!

Adam’s Peak :

Discover the enchanting genesis stories attached with this pilgrimage site on your trip to southern Sri Lanka’s emerald highlands. The holy mountain is also known as ‘Sri Pada’—after the sacred footprint that some believe has been left behind by the Buddha on his journey to paradise. Others believe the footprint belongs to the Lord Shiva, the most powerful God of the Hindu Trinity. Still others believe that ‘Adam’s Peak’ was where Adam first set his foot on earth after being thrown out of the Garden of Eden.

Photo of The Real Hill Station of Sri Lanka 2/4 by Ryan
Adams Peak Sri Lanka

The high pilgrimage season is between December and May when the innumerable steps to the peak is illuminated all the way from the base to the mountaintop like a lighted pathway to heaven! During other times of the year, the peak is often hidden by clouds. Experience ethereal views of the faraway coast or even of Colombo from the mountain top on clear dawns.

Ella :

Enjoy a trip to this favorite picturesque hill town of Sri Lanka. This beautiful spot is painted with swathes of emerald green hills, fragrant with tea plantations that are dotted with temples and pretty waterfalls. You may even catch an old steam-engine train rumbling along over a century-old, arched stone bridge! It is even possible to spy the Great Basses lighthouse shining out along the south coast.

Photo of The Real Hill Station of Sri Lanka 3/4 by Ryan
Nine Arch Bridge Train

If you’re enamored of quaint hill stations, gallons of fresh air, clear open skies and star-studded heavens—then this trip is just the thing for you! Enjoy leisurely walks by the hill side, relish the delicious local cuisine, and just sit back and relax.

Haputale :

Located about 193 km from Colombo (near Nuwara Eliya) and sticking to a long, narrow mountain ridge of the southern edge of the Central Highlands, lies Haputale at an elevation of 1431 m above sea level. This bowl-shaped valley offers strategic and commanding views of the north, with hills and highlands, and of the south, with plains running to the coastline. The sudden drop in elevation while descending into the city is both startling and breathtaking. Notice how the British planter’s have left behind their legacies with amazing hillside tea estates and old colonial plantation bungalows. Splendid hills with tea plantations, the Tea Factory and a Victorian heritage, are just some of the draws to Haputale.

Hatton :

Experience the charming feel of life on a Sinhalese hill station at this tiny hill country town. Enjoy the sweeping views of rolling, emerald green valleys and velvety tea plantations on little hikes among the region’s many wooded trails.

Photo of The Real Hill Station of Sri Lanka 4/4 by Ryan
Hatton - Tea Plantation

Interact with the locals as they work on the tea plantations dotting the green hamlet, and maybe even enjoy a cup of fragrant Sri Lankan tea. You could head off to the country’s other famous hillside destinations of Adam’s Peak, Nuwara Eliya and Kitulgala that are not too far from Hatton.