August was a pretty great month. There were two back-to-back road trips and three weeks in Australia.
My cousins, aunts and uncles were all back in Colombo during the school holidays and it was also a great time to drive up to Central Sri Lanka – Nuwara Eliya, my favourite place (second to Kandy).
Nuwara Eliya is a rough 4 1/2 drive from Colombo and a little further from the Central capital city of Kandy. There are two routes from Colombo either through Weliweriya or Pugoda. Both routes meet just after Avissawella anyway and the road beyond that is winding. Nuwara Eliya has an average temperature of 17C to 18C and the warmest would be around 20C to 23C. Nights get quite chilly!
As you’ll be travelling to higher altitudes, just remember that it can get quite foggy and visibility can be pretty low if you’re planning on travelling after dark. I’d recommend getting there during the day or making sure that the driving is extremely careful. The drive is beautiful and some of the most popular stops are at Horton Plains and then again when the the breathtaking views of the landscape starts changing about 20km from Nuwara Eliya town.
Nuwara Eliya is also known as Sri Lanka’s ‘Little England’; a highlight during the British, the town still gives you the feeling that you’re somewhere in England – the Nuwara Eliya Golf Club, the Racecourse which is still used for the annual Horse Races, the colonial buildings and architecture, the gardens landscaped in a very ‘British’ style – each giving its own little piece of beauty and grandeur to the overall atmosphere.
There were 09 of us in total including children so we booked the chalet at The Hill Club. It’s a fairly ‘luxury hotel’ – no children are allowed in the main hotel and as most hotels in Nuwara Eliya, you must be in formal attire for meals. The chalet is a smaller bungalow within the hotel premises but away from the hustle and bustle of the main building. It has its own privacy, garden, kitchen, living and TV area and three big bedrooms that don’t get in each other’s way.
Half the time was spent chilling – books were read, movies were watched. I had a few heart-to-heart sessions with my aunts. In the evening, we decided to move our legs. The town has been built around Lake Gregory. Everyone gathers over there during a morning walk or evening stroll for some tea, warm waffles, horse rides or jet skiing.
The next morning, we decided to take drive up to Ambewela, a approx. 30 minute drive from Nuwara Eliya town. Ambewela is also a well known brand of fresh milk. The Ambewela Farms are open to the public and is a popular attraction. You can catch the feeding times, watch the process of pasteurizing milk and even pet the calves (if you really want to)!
On the way back into town, we stopped by at Jagro’s for strawberries and cream (or practically any other combination – strawberries and waffles, strawberries and pancakes, strawberries and chocolate etc etc.)!
A (literally) chilled out destination it is!