Why You Should Visit the Highlands of Sri LankaAnne Christine Persson, Monday 3 February 2020
Here is why you should visit the highlands of Sri Lanka. Not only is Sri Lanka an amazing country, it is also a particularly good destination to explore. The stunning coasts, the national parks and the lush green highlands. On my last trip to Sri Lanka, I was able to get a feel for the amazing highlands not far from Colombo. The hills and mountains are covered in either trees, tea plants/shrubs and exotic flowers, so the drive there is quite incredible. We spotted monkeys in the trees along the way. You will see palm trees, rubber trees, bamboo and even Angel’s trumpets. A tree I have quite successfully started growing on my balcony in Copenhagen.
We opted for an intimate exclusive hotel in the middle of a tea plantation. The location was incredible, as it is located on a hillside with a view to a lake and rolling green hills of tea plants. We were not quite as lucky with the weather and we could have done without the rain. However, the hotel was the perfect setting for relaxation in the mountain. The decor was charming and very quickly felt like home and the service was impeccable. Camellia Hills offer all-inclusive service, so no need to think about what to have, how much etc. But for each meal you are treated to a variety of options and they are also open to requests.
During the day you are treated to lovely Sri Lankan tea, homebaked cookies, while enjoying the stunning view and the sound of silence. For sunny days, there is a pool and bicycles.
When the rain cleared, we took walks in the plantation and even encountered a family of wild boar.
Tea plantation visit
At the nearby Norwood Tea Factory, we took a guided tour of the plantation and factory. It was an interesting way to take a look behind the scenes of how tea is made and sold. From the process of planting and maintaining the tea plants to the picking, drying, shaping and sorting. From there packaging and selling it at auctions. Somehow having seen that I found tea started tasting a lot better.
Not far from the hotel is the mountain Adam’s Peak. It is a popular destination for both adventurous travellers as well as pilgrims of various religions from around the world. Legend has it that both Buddha, Shiva and Adam has been on Adam’s Peak. It is possible for even inexperienced hikers and mountaineers to climb the mountain. It is 2243 meters tall and it takes only a few hours. There is no actual climbing, more hiking up a mountain and there are stairs most of the way. Most people hike during the night in order to get there by dawn to watch the sunrise.
If you have more time, make sure to explore the highlands further east and north.
When to go:
The weather is nice and warm all year round. However, there are a risk of rain during the monsoon season from May to August. We were there in August and although we had a bit of rain, we stayed clear of the worst rain showers.
How to get there:
Drinking afternoon tea while enjoying the view of the lush Sri Lankan highlands is quite divine.