Sunday, July 22, 2007

A visit to Nuwareliya




It was raining when we reached.
The train ride through cloud colored forests is an experience I would cherish forever. I was so excited as the train left the station at 9.45am prompt, the journey to Srilanka’s “Up Country” is one I’ve wanted to undertake since the first time I came here in 2000.
“It’s very cold there” everyone told me, but I refused to believe anywhere in this tropical country can be that cold. Boy was I in for a surprise!
The view immediately after leaving Colombo Station is the dreariest I’ve seen here in Srilanka. The first slums I’ve observed lay sprawled several kilometers on one side of the rain tracks, like sprouting mushrooms, ramshackle homes lay close-knit. People, young and old, go about their business, engrossed in their own worlds, some stop to watch the train go by.
After about thirty minutes of uninspiring view, we leave behind muddy waters and coconut tree strewn forests and we ride past tall pine wood trees that stand guard on the uneven landscape.
A picturesque view, breath taking in its simplicity is created by the cultivated spaces.
Particularly the tea plantations that surround the grounds near the rail road. Tea leave pickers can be spotted bent before the shrubs that have been Srilanka’s export produce for generations. At certain places the train tracks pass so close to deep Ravines that, my heart flutters , I’m giddy with excitement as I look down at the settlements below.

Reaching our destination, a bus takes us to our hotel, we check in and have a huge dinner. It’s a small hotel with first class service. The hospitality is disconcerting!
The next day, we visit a famous garden, Hakgala Gardens, Hindu Mythology attribute the location to Lord Hanuman, their monkey god.
Its beautiful indeed, its easy to see why mythology thrives here. The clouds trickle down tall mountains and linger as mist in the lower valleys, the scene is Sureal.

1 comment:

Aruni said...

Sooo beautiful! Wish we were there too. Glad you are having fun.

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