Koslanda —> Lipton’s Seat —> EllaJanuary 16, 2020 in Sri Lanka ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C
We woke up earlier than planned today so decided to hit the road sharpish, by 630 we were out. Today we were going to drive up to Lipton’s Seat and finish the journey in Ella, a place that both of us had heard great things about so we were really excited. We had previously been told to go to Lipton’s Seat via a town in the hills called Haputhale, however we thought we would take the more direct route which turned out to be directly up the hill that Lipton’s Seat sat on...we found out pretty quickly that this may have been a mistake! The “road” condition was horrendous, it would have actually made a pretty rough walking route so not suitable for a TukTuk. However we had invested time in this route so we powered through and insisted that we would make it. Each kilometre took around half an hour and the road condition seemed to get worse. The locals who lived in the small villages in the hills that we passed through looked at us as we passed with both humour and confusion...I’m pretty sure they’d never seen a Tuktuk go past their house, let alone white people driving one past. Regardless of the road conditions, the scenery was gorgeous on the way up, passing through tea plantations and eventually we reached a section of road that was actually tarmac!! We celebrated the tarmac as Greta (our TukTuk) seemed to be struggling however it was short lived as the bumpy roads shortly returned. We got up to Liptons seat at 9am, and it was a really cool viewpoint! You could see over the tea plantations that we just drove through and could see miles ahead of that into the distance, we tried to identify the Dam in Udalalawe. After enjoying the view we decided to get a cup of tea at the make-do cafe at the top which had a beautiful view of the scenery. We paid up and made our way down to Ella via beautiful, tarmac roads!
We got to Haputhale, a busy town in the hills and we stopped to get some grub at Sunrise restaurant. We ordered Veggie Kottu and agreed a price, 250 for the portion with the young guy working there and waited for our takeout in the TukTuk after checking out the view out of the kitchen window at the restaurant. Our Kottu arrived and surprise surprise when it come to paying they tried to rip us off and charge a different price...we obviously disagreed and then an older guy came (presumably the young guys dad?) over to us but we did not back down. Through principle we argued for that 100 rupees (40p) and walked away with our huge Kottu for £1! We stopped our TukTuk at a viewpoint spot on the road and ate the Kottu with our hands, and gave some leftovers to a stray dog that had been following us for a while.
Eventually, we arrived in Ella and got to our hostel, Bunk Station. It was a relatively new hostel, only being opened 6 months ago so was very clean and tidy but the guy who worked behind the front desk seemed to be a bit of an arse...anyhow, we threw our bags on our beds and went straight to Nine Arch bridge, a popular tourist spot in Ella. The bridge was constructed by British engineers in 1921 and was situated about a 30 minute walk from our hostel. It was beautiful, pretty busy and very very hot! We stayed there for a bit watching the tourists doing their thing and then decided to try and climb to the bottom of the bridge as we could see and hear water down there...due to the density of the bush we failed our mission and decided to head back to our hostel, however as we were about to leave a train passed over the bridge which was really cool to see!
On the way back to the hostel we went on the hunt for a cold bottle of Coca Cola to enjoy back at the hostel. We could of either had 250ml for 280 rupees or 1.5l for 250 rupees, I’ll leave it to your imagination as to which one we got. We got back to the hostel chilled out with our cold coke on the bean bags they had in the common area and FaceTimed home. We then ventured into Ella and got dinner at City Cafe Ella, I got the veggie fried rice and Tom got veggie noodles...it was probably the first meal in Sri Lanka Tom wasn’t too fond of so decided he probably wouldn’t have the noodles again. After a quick dinner we went back to the hostel and chilled out in our room, I got back to find my bed had been nicked by some girl called Filipa, so I picked up all of her stuff and placed it on her suitcase. We chatted to the people in our room for a bit and decided we would join them for a sunrise hike to Little Adams peak in the morning... Filipa also joined us in the room and laughed about the check in man sending her to the wrong room - hence my bed being stolen earlier on. In good spirits we all went to bed to get up bright and early tomorrow.Read more