Tour: Tea Country When: June - July 2022 (3 - 5nights) Hotel:Araliya Red - TBC Per Person: Twin TBC / Single TBC Deposit: £50 or A$100 (Refundable) Visit:Sri Lanka Tourism
Tea Country Sri Lanka
It is cliche, but no Australian Cricket Tour to Sri Lanka is complete without taking a slow train into the glorious tea country south of Kandy. Mile after mile after rolling hill carpeted with lush green tea bushes, dotted with colourfully dressed ladies, endlessly picking fresh tips. Going 'uphill' is part of the must-do walk to World's End in Horton Plains National Park, from Nuwara Eliya. Sadly, it is the wrong time of year to hike up Adam's Peak so we cannot add this to our Cricket Tour.
The beauty of taking the train is the speed at which you travel. 135km and 3hours by road from Kandy to Ella, the tranquil railway journey is 7.5hrs as it winds and wends through the plantations. The journey from Colombo, via Kandy, is 8.5hours - 11hours.
Depending on the cricket schedule, this will be a 3-night tour after a Kandy Test Match. If we do not play Kandy, this will be a 5-night trip starting in Colombo, to include 2 nights in Kandy and 3 nights in Nuwara Eliya. Like our Colombo Cricket Tour, Galle Cricket Tour, or Kandy Cricket Tour, we must wait until we know the cricket schedule.
If we play Test Cricket in Kandy, we leave after the Test at 11am. The slow journey into the hills lets you take hundreds of photos of breathtaking scenery before arriving at Nanuoya at 2.15pm. The railway does not service Nuwara Eliya, the cool summer retreat for well-to-do Colombo society, so a bus will take us to Nuwara Eliya's newest hotel opposite the racecourse. The afternoon is yours to wander the town or enjoy a much cooler Lion Lager on the terrace of Nuwara Eliya Golf Club.
Dinner is included at the hotel, so fill up and get to bed early, or late, for the 5am drive to Horton Plains National Park, for a very relaxed and easy 3-hour circuitous walk to 'World's End'. Views from the escarpment to the coast are outstanding and much better than the 90mins walk via Mini World's End. Taking the long way via Baker's Falls to World's End is best because the walk back is rough, rugged, and steep, and you wouldn't want to walk this path 'up' even though it is much shorter.
Returning to Nuwara Eliya, after lunch we head to Pedro Tea Estate for a stroll through the famed Sri Lankan tea plantations where photos of the ladies picking tea are virtually limitless. Courtesy should be offered to the ladies who are more than happy to oblige your photography.
The next day we take the train after breakfast to the beautiful town of Ella, higher in the hills, for more stunning scenery and quick lunch on arrival. After lunch, we'll explore Ella including Ella Waterfall, and walk across 9 Arch Bridge;known as 'Bridge In The Sky'. It's 3km walk from the station to the viewpoint of this 24m high gorgeous brick viaduct across the forest. We leave Ella at 6pm for the 90mins drive back to Nuwara Eliya and dinner.
The next day we make a slow drive downhill via 'Bridge on the River Kwai' film location and lunch, to Colombo! The drive should take 6 hours. If we play in Colombo and Galle, we could do this 5-night trip before the 1st Test. No matter which test is first, the drive from Nuwara Eliya heads to Colombo first, and then south to Galle as we did in 2016.
If your Australian Cricket Tour of Sri Lanka starts in the Tea Country, you may need one night at our hotel in Colombo first, and your transfer from Bandaranaike International Airport is included.