The distance from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya is about 80 kms, and can be easily done in about 3 hours, considering you will be driving hill country. We, as is usual with us, stopped by a whole lot of places and ended up reaching Nuwara Eliya only around 3pm…after about a good 6 hours from the time of start in Kandy…
Our first stop was by the Kandy View Point. Just off the city limits, in the hills, you stop by only for about 10-15 minutes out here to get a glimpse of the city down there. On a good day, you will get a crystal clear view of the lovely lake and its surroundings down below, and marvel.
A little more than an hour’s drive from there got us to the Rambooda Waterfalls. No, not to the falls directly, but to a view point that had a tea/coffee shop and an extended deck from where one can see the famous Y-shaped waterfalls. We stopped by for the view, a couple of photographs, some tea and a washroom break.
Soon after, we entered tea territory. Now, Kandy falls under Sri Lanka’s famous tea districts. Better still, Kandy and Nuwara Eliya are the two most significant tea growing areas in Central Sri Lanka. This essentially means, when driving up to Nuwara Eliya, you are flanked by tea gardens on both sides. And that’s why a 3-hour journey took us double the time. We stopped by every beautiful turn and ran up to the gardens, wanting to lie down there and soak in the sun.
For tea lovers, there are many tea centers on the way, where you can stop by for a cuppa and also to take a few packets back home and for family and friends. We stopped at the Bluefield Tea Center, and bought quite a few packets. Unlike Darjeeling in India, the Sri Lankan tea is of the strong variety. Not my favourite. Nonetheless, a good buy here for gifts back home..One warning, the center is extremely crowded. We found it difficult to grab a table for ourselves when we requested for some tea and cookies. Guides get a good commission out here, which is why they bring their guests here. Hence, it is best to ask your guide to take you to a quieter and less crowded place.
With this, we resumed our journey uphill towards Nuwara Eliya. The weather, by now had changed from a bright sunny day to cloudy and started raining soon after. There is no bigger romance than driving by tea hills in the rains with tea gardens playing hide and seek in the resulting fog. Loving and living every moment, we reached Nuwara Eliya craving for a hot steaming cup of tea at our hotel…
P.S: For a complete Sri Lanka itinerary and tour details, read — Best Itinerary & Blogs for Sri Lanka Road Trip