Tag Archives: Tourism

Botanical Garden at Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka

The Botanical Garden at Nuwara Eliya is the second enchanting garden that I have visited in Sri Lanka (see pics of Kandy Garden in an earlier post). It would be silly to compare the two, as both of them have very distinct character and charm of their own.

The Botanical Garden at Hakgala, 10 km from the Nuwara Eliya hill station, was setup in 1871 and is located at an elevation of 1745 meters above sea level. The climate in the region is extremely pleasant throughout the year, with hardly any extreme season.

Too much fiddling has not been done by man to disturb the natural beauty of the area, and it is a photograher’s paradise. It does not boast of ancient and historic trees like the Kandy-Peredenia Garden, but has over 10 thousand species of flora and some of its huge trees are also more than a century old.

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Nuwara Eliya

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Yala National Park, Sri Lanka

Yala National Park was a pleasant surprise. Located in Southern part of Sri Lanka, the Rain-forest was pristine and beautiful. It is green and untouched. Its beauty lies in amazing scenery and healthy animals who do not seem to bother about the tourists at all. But that is because the Safari jeep drivers are disciplined and cautious – they have not ruffled the farmers. many of the animals seen in these pictures actually came out of the dense forests to have a LOOK AT US !

The leopard sat majestically just near the track, eating its kill, least bothered about the clicking humans nearby – reeking royalty and non nonchalance

The birds were simply amazing. I clicked a few and missed hundreds in my short three hour Safari.   I have been to a number of national parks in India, but the number of animals, the state of the forest and the overall experience was much better here. Maybe, that was because the ‘king’ showed up this time, whereas I have never been able to see the tiger in Indian forests.

The amazing beaches and the lotus ponds, not to mention many scenic waterholes makes me wonder whether the animals here are actually having a whale of a time, while we humans are slogging it out in the cities?????

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Safari Trail

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Crock comes to greet us near the gate

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Water Hole

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Jungle Inspector Elephant comes near to peep inside our jeep. All’s well and he moves on to check the next jeep

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Inspector Elephant being a little careful about allowing tourists in the jungle today

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Jungle fowl, no less proud than the peacocks

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Obelix would have loved this forest

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Hornbills

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Pretty picture

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Jackal family

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The beach in the middle of the forest

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Safari taking a break at the beach

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At close quarters

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Elephant shaped rock with amazing lotus pond

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Wild Buffalo, doing what it does best, enjoying a water hole

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Hawk

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Langoor looking pensive

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All set?

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Leopard eating its kill

Leopard eating its kill

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Mongoose

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Monitor Lizard

 

380sq mile Rain Forest

380sq mile Rain Forest


Awesome nature: Kandy, Sri Lanka

Natural beauty of Kandy, Sri Lanka lies in its greenery. The trees of Royal Botanical Garden and the winding, snaking roads lined with awesome trees makes the place a photographer’s delight.

Some of the pics here were taken from the car – since the scenes were too tempting to ignore. Imagine what one can get if one goes with a dedicated mission of capturing all of its beauty!!!
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Flowers of Royal Botanical Gardens, Kandy

Sri Lanka’s Kandy hill station is known for its Royal Botanical Garden, and rightly so.

It is a beautiful garden, with a huge variety of plants from all over the world.

Here are some of the pics I took of in its flowering plants section. Actually the trees were much more glamorous, with names like Mother in Law Plant and Song of India plant etc, and some of them were huge and more than 150 years old. Some of the trees with thick creepers were haunting in their beauty. But I could not capture them with my limited ability and basic Canon camera.

So let these pics be just the appetizers for you….

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Whale watching in Sri Lanka

Whale watching is Sri Lanka is picking up as a great tourist activity. This only started only a few years back, when it was realized that the whales come in the Indian Ocean during a particular season. In fact the activity picked up only after 2009 when the civil war ended and the tourists started flocking in.

Sighting whales near the shores of Sri Lanka is pretty easy done, in the months of November to March. Blue Whales and Sperm Whales can be seen easily a few kilometers from the shores. Schools of dolphins that frolic around the tourist boats are a ‘free’ add-on, though they are as good a reason as any to go out in the sea. Dolphins are elegant and happy creatures – the way they show-off, when they see a boat full of people, is amazing.

The boats leave the port of Galle, Mirissa and Trincomalee, just to name a few, early in the morning and rest assured, within an hour you start seeing the majestic sea mammals. The trip is usually over by the afternoon.

Here are a few pics that I took of the whales and dolphins with my small Nikon. (It is indeed a truism that we love our fuzzy-shaky pictures much more than the awesome ones we can easily get on the net- and so I will not resist the temptation to post some of mine.)

Dolphin in crystal clear waters Whale snouting near a tourist boat Whale near the tourist boat Whale, coming out to breathe A Dolphin (probably imitating a shark)

 

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Palms and Beaches of Colombo

A confession….these pics are taken from a mobile 😦

But do not let that deter you from taking a look…it takes away nothing from the sheer beauty of the beaches of Colombo – Negombo and Mt Lavina – captured in these pics. Capturing the natural beauty of a beach and the palms is perhaps the second easiest thing to do…the first being capturing the beauty of the hills and the pines 🙂

Another food for thought…how long will it take for mobile phone to catch up to professional cameras?


Gangaramaya Temple, Colombo

The Gangaramaya temple was the first one one I visited since I landed in Colombo, Sri Lanka. In an instant one understands the culture of the land – like this temple’s architecture, Sri Lankan culture is a mix of Indian, Sri Lankan, Thai,  and Chinese.

This beautiful temple has the main features of a Vihara, a hindu temple, a Cetiya or Pagoda, a Bodhitree, a Seema malaka or an assembly hall for monks and a relic chamber.

Here are some of the photos I clicked. Notice that even random photos from a non-professional camera gives awesome results – all thanks to the photogenic quality of the temple itself.


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