Yesterday we went on a drive to go south from Mawanella heading towards Pidurutalagala – where tea grows on the mountainsides .
We stopped on the way in Kadugannawa to visit the National Railway Museum. The museum turned out to be a surprising gem! The staff member guided me through various railway relics, many bearing the proof of Sri Lanka’s British colonial past, was very knowledgable and I’ll admit I’m not very fascinated by trains I still found everything quite interesting. My favourite was being able to actually participate in a demonstration of a Tyer’s Tablet instrument which was an ingenious form of railway signaling for single line railways. The Tyer’s Tablet was invented after a deadly tragedy in 1874 and thus prevented many accidents. If you’re curious you can check it out more about the instrument here.
We were back on the road and I was soaking in the sights of the busy and exciting roadways.
Passing through Pussellawa we stopped to check out a Hindu temple with an amazing view. We slipped off our shoes and wandered around the holy grounds for a bit. I loved seeing the temple’s bright banners blowing in the wind!
Battling some declining weather, we decided to have lunch at Ramboda Falls Hotel where we were able to stare in wonder at the amazing waterfall and mountainous scenery while we could eat with a roof over our head.
Pressing on we finally arrived in tea country!
A local picked a few tea leaves for us to smell. Even with layers of fog and mist the whole area was plainly lush. The air itself seemed thick with life. Besides tea, vegetables and fruits grow abundantly in this as well and roadsides stalls bearing signs of the local produce overflowed everywhere you looked. Many of the guesthouses in this area advertised picking your own food from their garden which they would prepare for your meals.
We turned back after visiting Nuwara Eliya, where we saw horses wander around the race course grounds and brave souls (ignoring grey skies) jet skiing on Lake Gregory at breakneck speeds. On the way home the fog rolled in even thicker and the scenery dissolved into misty silhouettes – trees with the opacity turned way down. Every once in a while, driving on the winding mountain roads, we’d turn a corner and the fog would break suddenly and I would see wonderful glimpses of the green hillsides.
Though the weather was not entirely cooperative, I loved the journey!
Check out a video below of the day’s events.