Kandy is a perfect destination for a longer stay in the centre of the island. Both Sigiriya in the Cultural Triangle lowlands and Nuwara Eliya in the central tea highlands are within day-tour distance to the north and south. Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage to the west and Victora Reservoir to the east are within half-day distance. There is a large variety of recommendable wonderful holiday accommodation in Kandy, stylish or modern, with gardens or views, in the busy town centre or at the tranquil hills.
However, some people like to have a town close-by but do not want to stay inside a town during their holidays. For those looking for a natural surrounding but in less than half an hour driving distance from Kandy city, in order to to combine a relaxing holiday in a lush green scenery with the advantages of Kandy’s shopping facilities, tourist attractions and central location for further excursion, Team Sightseeinglanka can provide simple but clean low-cost accommodation 15 km outside town, halfway between the town centre and Wattegama, which is the nearest entrance gate to the Montane Forest Reserve of Knuckles Range at Bambarella, starting point for hiking and trekking routes (see below).
Though not far away from Kandy, here you can enjoy the tranquility of Sri Lanka's hill country, with views to the beautiful rural and mountainous landscape from your breakfast veranda. It’s a perfect location not only for visiting Kandy and surroundings, it’s a good starting point for hiking and trekking, too. Raasa Ella waterfalls are close-by. Saree Ella and Huluganga waterfalls can be reached by car, from Huluganga there is a route towards Alakola Estate with Thaliya Wetuna Falls in about 4 km distance. Many more unknown hidden waterfalls can be reached on hiking tours in this western part of the Knuckles Mountains. Besides accommodation, Team Sightseeinglanka can also arrange guided trekking for very attractive affordable prices in this area.
Bambarella - western gateway to Knuckles Range
For two-day trekkings, the so-called “Knuckles Peak Trail” starts from Bambarella at the western border or from Thangappuwa at the southern border of the Forest Reserve and leads to Corbett’s Gap, overnight stay is in a camp on peak, in 1863 m altitude. For hikers, a shorter but even adventurous track called “Alugallena Trail” will reach the Alugallena rock and cave and a perfect panorama viewpoint in about 7 km distance, this hiking tour is managable within five hours, starting and ending in Bambarella. There is a long foot path from Alugallena to Meemure crossing the whole Knuckles Range, too, but not in a good condition, you really should not try it without an experienced guide.
Knuckles Range is an area of 34 mountain peaks (1000-2000m) at the border between Kandy and Matale Districts. The English name “Knuckles” is derived from the shape of a clenched fist. The Sinhala name “Dumbara Kandu” means “Misty Mountains”. This Forest Reserve is a World Heritage Site due to the biodiversity of its virgin pigmy forests and grasslands, full of flowers, birds and butterflies. To learn more about Knuckles Range, please visit our Knuckles Range and Meemure webpages or Deanston blog article.
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