Today the ancient city of Polonnaruwa remains one of the best planned archaeological relic sites in the country, standing testimony to the discipline and greatness of the Kingdom’s first rulers. Its beauty was also used as a backdrop to filmed scenes for the Duran Duran music video Save a Prayer in 1982. The ancient city of Polonnaruwa has been declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO.
Near the ancient city, there is a small town with several hotels (especially for tourists) and some glossy shops, and places to fulfill day-to-day needs. There are government institutions in a newly built area called “new town,” about 6 km away from the town and the main road. The largest school in the district, Polonnaruwa Royal Central College is situated at new town.
Polonnaruwa is the second largest city in North Central Province, but it is known as one of the cleanest and more beautiful cities in the country. The green environment, amazing ancient constructions, Parakrama Samudra (a huge lake built in 1200), and attractive tourist hotels and hospitable people, attract tourists.
Another draw for tourists is the city’s population of toque macaques. The monkeys have been living in the ruins since human occupation and continue to thrive here long after the humans left.
Sri Lanka is home to 5 out of 7 sea turtle species in the world. All species are threatened with extinction, and sea turtle hatcheries along the coast are doing a great job to keep the population growing.
In the Sea Turtle Hatchery we can see the baby turtles, as they are kept safe until they they are big enough to be set free in the ocean.
Sometimes if we are lucky, we can watch the baby turtles hatching from their eggs.
Please note there is a small entrance fee.
Ella is a beautiful little village situated in the mountains of Sri Lanka.
Let your soul rest while you watch the amazing view of Ella Gap.
Climb the small mountain, Little Adams Peak, even small children can follow and the view is amazing.
Take a walk on the railway tracks or go a little outside town to meet the wild monkeys.
The village is also home to restaurants and cosy cafés with free wifi..
If you are in a good shape you can climb the 5.200 steps to the top of Adams Peak.
The place is known to be where Adam’s first sets foot on earth after being cast out of heaven.
There are two tracks on the mountain leading to the Foot print af Adam, one called the Baba track & the other the Mama track, meaning Adam & Eve. The Mama track is easy and is the route by which the pilgrims return, but anyone who goes by that way is not considered to have made the pilgrimage at all. The Baba track is difficult & stiff climbing.
Fernando Tours recommends only the Mama track to our guest.
Climbing starts around midnight, so You will reach the top before sunrise.
Bring a sweater it can be very cold at the top, waiting for the sun to rise.
Adams Peak is locally known as Sri Pada.
Please note foreigners will have to pay a fee to climb Adam’s Peak.
Beware of crocodiles and huge water monitors as you cruise down the beautiful Madu Ganga River in a small boat.
Visit Cinnamon Island and buy the tasty cinnamon right where it is grown. (Bring cash if You want to purchase cinnamon)
Please note You will need tickets for the boat hire.
Horton Plains, the only National Park in Sri Lanka where you are allowed to walk around.
Normally we start the hike in the early morning with breakfast packages.
At World’s End you can sit down and have your breakfast to the amazing view of the mountains.
Horton Plains is home to a small population of leopards but unfortunately they are rarely seen.
Tip! Wear your clothes in layers as it can be very cold in the early morning hours and become very hot when the sun comes out.
As the roads are in a very bad condition, we have to hire a jeep or a van to get to the Horton Plains National Park.
Please note there is an entrance fee to Horton Plains.