Friday, March 2, 2012

Nuwara Eliya, The Little England.

Nuwara Eliya, also called as Little England is a town in the central highlands of Sri Lanka with a picturesque landscape and temperate climate. It is located at an altitude of 1,868 m (6,128 ft) and is considered to be the most important location for Tea production in Sri Lanka. The town is overlooked by Pidurutalagala, the tallest mountain in Sri Lanka.

The city was founded by Samuel Baker, the discoverer of Lake Albert and the explorer of the Nile in 1846. Nuwara Eliya's climate lent itself to becoming the prime sanctuary of the British civil servants and planters in Ceylon. Nuwara Eliya, called Little England then, was also a hill country retreat where the British colonialists could immerse in their pastimes such as fox hunting, deer hunting,elephant hunting, polo, golf and cricket.

Although the town was founded in the 19th century by the British, the whole district is today visited by native travelers, specially during the month of April, the season of flowers, pony races, go cart races and auto rally.
The town's attractions include the golf course, trout streams, Victoria Park, and boating or fishing on Lake Gregory. Victoria Park is an attractive and well-used oasis. It is popular with birdwatchers at quieter times because of the good opportunities it gives to see various species, particularly the Indian Blue Robin, Pied Thrush or Scaly Thrush lurking in the denser undergrowth. The Kashmir Flycatcher is another attractive bird species found in the park. Galway's Land Bird Sanctuary, close to Lake Gregory, is another wildlife site of 0.6 km².


Due to the high altitude, Nuwara Eliya has a much cooler climate than the lowlands of Sri Lanka, with a mean annual temperature of 16 °C. But the temperature changes and sometimes it can be as low as 3°C. In the winter months it is quite cold at night, and there can even be frost. although it rapidly warms up as the tropical sun climbs higher during the day.

Places around to visit

Victoria Park
The lovely Victoria Park at the centre of town comes alive with flowers around March to May, and August and September. It’s also home to quite a number of Hill Country bird species, including the Kashmir flycatcher, Indian pitta and grey tit.

Gregory Lake
This lake is one of the significant tourist attractions in Nuwara Eliya It is about 91.2 hectors in extent. There is a boat yard for visitors for both boating and rowing. Now there is a sea plain service to this lake from Colombo.

Lovers Leap Waterfall
Lover's Leap..Born as a fountain in the wilds of Piduruthalagala,2484 m-Srilanka's highest mountain.The 30m high fall, located off the Kandapola Road. The water is taken to brew the famous Nuwara Eliya Beer.

Nuwara Eliya Golf Club
The Nuwara Eliya Golf Club is Spread over 90 acres, just a walking distance from the town center, the 18 holes golf course is one of Nuwara Eliya’s biggest attractions. Reputed to be the only Gulf Course where all the holes are visible from the Club House. A great tourist attraction for all those visitors who feels like doing a little golfing for relaxation.

Hakgala Botanical Garden
The gardens take the shape of several terraces upon the lower slopes of the rock and face the Uva Valley, across which some magnificent views of the Madulsima and the Namunukula range of mountains are seen in the distant landscape. The climate of the Gardens is subtropical, cool, fresh and somewhat similar to an alpine atmosphere. It boasts 100 year old Monetary Cypress trees from California, Japanese Cedars, Himalayan Pines and English Oak. The gardens put up their best display of temperate annual flowers, Roses and Orchids during this period.


The town really comes alive in April for the Sinhalese and Tamil New Year, and it is difficult to find accommodation as Sri Lankans holiday in the region during this period. The festive season starts on April 1 annually in a ceremonial manner. The ceremony consists mainly of a band show in which all the local school bands participate.
Main attractions during April season include the numerous motor racing and horse racing events. Motor racing comes alive with the Mahagastotte and Radella Hill Climbs, the former being run since 1934. The Nuwara Eliya Road Race and the 4X4 Lake Cross on edge of Lake Gregory attract a fair share of enthusiasts. Parties are held nightly in the hotels, and the season culminates in the nine furlong (1811 m) Governor's Cup, Golf Tournaments and the flower show at the end of the month.

Source - Wikipedia 

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