Going solo in Nuwara Eliya
The mountain resort town of Nuwara Eliya provides the solo traveller a number of opportunities and activities to have a great vacation. We have put together a list of things to do if you are travelling by yourself.
Relax and Chill
Wander around the well-manicured Hakgala Botanical Gardens or stroll along the tree lined paths of Victoria Park and imagine yourself to be in the English countryside instead of on a tropical island. Take a paddle boat out on to Lake Gregory, or just enjoy an afternoon picnic of strawberries and cream by the lake shore. If you want to be a little more adventurous, you can rent a jet ski and zoom around the lake.
Explore Strawberry Farms
Dig into some of nature’s goodness at the many strawberry farms scattered throughout the region. Pick fresh strawberries or indulge in some delectable strawberry desserts at the cafes and outlets run by the farms.
Complement that strawberry rush with a cup of pure Ceylon Tea! Tea estates and factories are abundant in Nuwara Eliya, with most being in operation since the 19 th Century. A number of tea estates offer tea tours, where you can walk around the plantation, learn how to pluck tea leaves, visit the tea factory and enjoy a steaming cup of the best tea in the world. Some of the estates also have beautiful waterfalls that you can visit.
Colonial Culture and Heritage
Dotted around the town are vestiges of old colonial masterpieces that have now been turned into luxurious hotels. Explore the Grand Hotel Nuwara Eliya, Jetwing St. Andrew’s, the Hill Club and the Post Office, and appreciate the intricacies of 19 th Century British architecture. Some of the hotels will serve you a garden afternoon tea of scones and cream, along with a hot pot of tea, to complete the colonial experience. The Holy Trinity Church is also worth a visit as it has a quaint English village feel.
Hike through the Plains
The famous Horton Plains located a short distance from Nuwara Eliya, boasts of lush montane ecosystems where many species of flora and fauna thrive. The plains have many hiking trails that take you through varying terrain and past refreshing streams and waterfalls. Moon Plains and the Galway’s Land National Park are also popular sites for hikes and bird watching. Do keep in mind that the trails within these nature reserves are vast and it is best to take along an experienced tour guide.
If you enjoy history and legend, you should definitely add the Nuwara Eliya Ramayana Trail to your itinerary. The Nuwara Eliya region is considered to have been one of King Ravana’s strongholds, and to have been the last place he held the kidnapped Sita captive, until she was rescued by her husband. The temples and sites that make up the trail are important places of worship for the Hindu community. They also provide wonderful insights to local culture and belief systems.