Tea for Two


Ella gap sunrise, sri lanka

From Dambulla/Sigirya (which I haven’t even blogged about yet, so that’s fun) and a two-hour chunder bus later, we made it to Kandy. And after a pleasant night involving the Temple of the Tooth, some interesting Kandyan dancing and yet more excellent curry, we headed on to Nuwara Eliya/Ella…

Ella gap, Sri Lanka

Both our hotels in Ella faced the stunning Ella gap (above)…beautiful mountain outlines undulating into the distance. It was cooler in the hills in the evening, but in the daytime…whew. Still hot and humid.

Mackwoods tea, Sri Lanka

Tea plantations in Sri Lanka

So when you think about it, it seems insane that we drank so much tea on this holiday, but you can’t really not when you’re in the region for it.

And what a stunning region it is. Ridges and rows of tea shrubs wrap round the hills like the folds of so many tablecloths. The roads wind. The tuktuks take insane chances on blind bends. Seriously, maybe that is why people drink so much tea in Sri Lanka; to calm themselves down after half an hour on the road.

tea plants in sri lanka

Mackwoods tea, Sri Lanka

Sri lankan tuk tuk rides

We did a couple of tea factory tours in the region (if you can really call the Mackwoods tour a tour…it was more ‘leaves, machines, roll, dry, cut, now drink.”) Also ‘now dutifully buy said tea’, which we did, of course.Mackwoods tea, Sri Lanka

did find out though, that Orange Pekoe and Broken Orange Pekoe (bop! Bop!) isn’t some citrusy tea, as I always assumed, but actually just black breakfast tea leaves of a specific size. Also ‘dust’ or ‘fannings’ are most likely what’s in your tea bag (not a great grade of tea).

Ella train station, Sri Lanka

Not content to sit on our bums and drink beer and ginger beer (I mean we were, but also we weren’t), we decided to do the Little Adam’s Peak hike…the little sister of the Adam’s Peak hike, which involves getting up at 1am and hoofing up the mountain for sunrise. Horton Plains had fulfilled the ‘get up far too early at least once’ option for us, so we took it easy here…

Little Adam's Peak sri lanka Little Adam's Peak, sri lankaAs easy as it can be, on these hills anyway. One fun scramble and about two hours later, we were sat on protruding rocks in the scant breeze, drinking in the insanely beautiful vistas and watching other tourists try to navigate the tricky hill downwards (quite amusing, actually…)

Three relaxed days, and one disappointing T20 cricket match for Sri Lanka later, we were back at Ella to catch the train to Haputale, and then a driver on to Mirissa, one of the loveliest beaches I’ve had the fortune to wander along. But that’s for later…

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