The second half of our stay in Sri Lanka brought us inland, to the town of Ella to be exact. It is a small city amongst the Sri Lankan mountains. After a 5.5 hour bus ride, we arrived. Barely. These buses MOVE through the small beach towns, almost like playing frogger through the streets. It was also quite frightening approaching Ella…these roads were so steep as we continued to climb higher and higher. It is amazing how the buses continue to make it up the busy, windy roads. We ended up at a hostel that was a recommendation from our Holland friends. It was at the top of a hill and managed by two elderly women. Nice room, and a peaceful place to sleep. One of our days here we decided to be adventurous and climb the infamous Ella Rock. It is a 3 hour hike to the peak of the rock. We began the journey and started to wind up and down the rocky cliffs. John decided not to make the trek to the top, so a very kind local farmer took me most of the way. At his pace. An incredibly fast pace. I was pleased enough when I was able to see the peak and told the man I wanted to return to the bottom and make sure John was good to go. We were pleased enough with the walk!
Kelcie’s Farmer Guide
Ella Rock in the background
Our final day in Sri Lanka brought us to the large, bustling city of Kandy. We took a 7 hour train (yeah, not as fun OR as short of a train ride as we thought.) We arrived in the city around 5pm and had not a clue where to go. There was a man who hassled us a bit about his hostel near Kandy Lake, so we decided to follow him to check things out. It was a pretty area, but the hostel was certainly lacking in that department. It was another not so good night sleep, but at least we knew we would be waking up to head to the airport and Thailand in the morning! We took in some of the local sights and checked out the temple downtown and decided to try Indian food for our first time. Overall, we both said the city was a very skippable destination for us. However, it worked out in the end as it got us closer to Colombo and where we needed to be to fly out.
View from the train
Our Train from Kandy to Colombo
Sri Lanka scents: The local fish market…that moment when everything just stops because of that whiff in the air. The local train consisting of sweat and more sweat. Throw in the kids who scream their heads off with every tunnel you enter. And every day we seemed to pinpoint this specific smell of burning leaves. Whether it was trash, plastic, whatever they found to dispose of.
Sri Lankan Currency