Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Kitulgala: The Sri Lankan Diaries

We left Hatton at around 1030AM and knew the road to Galle was long. We had to go back to Colombo and then take the newly opened highway all the way to Galle, which is already in the southern coast of Sri Lanka. So just imagine, we were to travel from the central highlands, all the way to the south.



So on the way, we decided to stop over lunch in a small town called Kitulgala. The place is best known for the filming location of the movie, the Bridge on the River Kwai. The Kelani River, near Kitulgala, was a popular spot here, although nothing remains now except the concrete foundations for the bridge and apparently, the train cars that have sunk in the river during the shooting. 


We had our lunch in a restaurant that had amazing views of the river. I forgot the name of the restaurant, but I think it's one of the more popular stopovers since a lot of tourists (even busloads) go here. There was a traditional Sri Lankan buffet which looked uninspiring. Hence, we ordered ala carte.


Kitulgala is also a base for white-water rafting. The scenery by the river is as provincial as you can get. The foliage surrounding the banks of the river were lush and verdant. I was again amazed at how raw nature was in Sri Lanka. It may be similar to what we have, but here, you feel that you are truly worlds away.




I descended to the river and saw some people having a picnic by the muddy banks. The water was calm  from where I was, but it was flowing at some parts downstream. I imagined how nice it would have been to kayak. After a few minutes of exploring, I headed back up to the restaurant. We continued our journey to Galle, hoping to arrive before sunset. 



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