About the Property
Approximately 20 kilometres (30 minutes) away from the bungalow is the hill station of Nuwara Eliya. It enjoys spring-like weather throughout the year. A favourite retreat of the British during colonial times, the town is dotted with English country style houses and half-timbered bungalows, earning the name "Little England".
The Nuwara Eliya Golf Club, in the heart of the city, is one of the oldest and finest in South Asia. The 18-hole golf course is open to visitors and in 2014, celebrated its 125th anniversary.
The Grand Hotel and Hill Club of Nuwara Eliya also hearken back to a previous era, where a 'sundowner' overlooking the lush lawns might be followed by a spot of billiards.
For a picturesque stroll, stop by the well-maintained Victoria Park or head to Lake Gregory, located just south of the town, and one of its most popular attractions. Both the park and the lake were created during the Governorship of Sir William Gregory in 1873, when Sri Lanka was under Colonial rule. To this day, crowds of people flock to this vast expanse of water, where boats are available for hire. Pony rides can also be arranged in the park. Air Taxi rides from Colombo to Lake Gregory take just 30 minutes.
For a bit of local colour, make your way to the Bale Bazaar to stock up on your warm clothing. In April, Nuwara Eliya is crowded with locals dressed in their finery for the Derby-style horse races at the Turf Club. Annual races are held on the 9th and 23rd of April. The Governor's Cup is held on 16th of April.
Nuwara Eliya Race Course
Located at the end of the Victoria Park, the Nuwara Eliya Race Course is located 6128 feet above sea level. In fact, it's one of the oldest race courses in the world. The only remaining horse racing venue on the island, it dates back to the 1840s when John Baker introduced horse-racing to Sri Lanka, while the country was still under English rule.
The grand houses surrounding the Race Course are hallmarks of colonial era architecture, reminiscent of Surrey or Hampshire in England—a nostalgic craving by the planters to create a little bit of home in the tropics.
Created during the period of British Governor Sir William Gregory in 1873 when Sri Lanka had been a colony of the British Empire, Gregory Lake is one of the most enthralling attractions in Nuwara Eliya. A vast expanse of water where crowds of people gather to relax and unwind, a multitude of boats is always ready to take you on a wondrous voyage.
Take a walk in the Lake park nearby or enjoy a balmy evening by the lakeside. Ride a two seater Swan Boat or let your kiddies have a Pony ride. It’s always a thrilling experience to visit the Gregory Lake. On an Air Taxi operated by Srilankan Air, it’s just 30 minutes travel from Colombo to Gregory Lake.
Hakgala Botanical Gardens
The Hakgala Botanical Gardens were founded in 1860 by the eminent British botanist Dr. G. H. K. Thwaites, who was also the superintendent of the more famous gardens at Peradeniya, near Kandy.
The climate of the Hakgala area – with a mean temperature of 16ºC – is perfect for temperate-zone plants. These include conifers and cedars from Australia, Bermuda, and Japan, as well as cypresses from the Himalayas, China, Persia, Mexico and California.
There is an excellent specimen of the camphor tree, usually found at heights of over 12,000m. In the Rose Garden, you can experience the sights and scents of these glorious blooms in their infinite variety. From here it is a short stroll to the exotic sophistication of the Orchid House, home to the famous mountain orchids, many of them endemic to Sri Lanka.
The fernery at Hakgala lies in the shade of the Hakgala Rock, which is shaped like the jawbone of an elephant, from which it gets its name. Delicate fronds conjure up visions of misty grottoes, lichen-covered stones, and meandering streams, and contain ferns specific to Sri Lanka, Australia, and New Zealand.