Ambewela Farm in Sri Lanka

Ambewela is a small town, or a hill station, located in the Nuwara Eliya District of Sri Lanka. The area is also sometimes called “Little New Zealand”. The town is situated approximately 17 km (11 mi) south-east of the district capital Nuwara Eliya. Ambewela is also a service center to the New Galway tea planting district.

This farm is located at Ambewela which is a few Km away from Nuwara eliya. The New Zealand Farm is a part of the Ambewela Farm which are both dairy farms. New Zealand Farm is located only 3-4 Km away from Ambewela farm. New Zealand farm rears pure bred Friesian cows and maintain a pure line of cattle. In order to maintain the quality of milk the cows are provided with a rich diet and sterilized water. Excellent health care are given on a 24 hr basis. Here one can see the largest grass lands of Sri Lanka and is also a part of the Ambewela farm which manufactures dairy products, such as milk, cheese and yoghurt and could be seen by visitors.

  • Climate and vegetation

Due to the high altitude of 6,064 ft (1,848 m) the mean annual temperature in the area is below 17.5 °C (63.5 °F), while frost is common during Winter. Ambewela is also popular for of being the highest (in altitude) and widest grassland in Sri Lanka.[1] Mammals such as the Sambar Deer, Leopard, Elephant dominate the majority of the forest cover around the area.

Ambewela situated en route to the Horton Plains National Park and is famous scenic landscapes, Rhododendron arboreum flowers, and the World’s End, which is a 1,219 m (3,999 ft) deep cliff. Similar to Horton Plains and Ohiya, this site is also one of the Important Bird Areas of Sri Lanka, making the area a popular location for birdwatching as well.

  • Importance and economic activities

The climatic and economic conditions in Ambewela make it an ideal location for dairy farming, hence the country’s only milk powder factory is situated in this area. The two animal husbandries, Ambewela Farm and New Zealand Farm, have Ayrshire cattle and Friesian cows respectively.

The geographic location and altitude of Ambewela expose the site to strong South west Monsoons, with winds occasionally reaching over 12 m/s (39 ft/s), making the area a favourable location for Wind farms and other Wind energy developments. As the site is only used for livestock and similar activities, the site is also an economic zone for erecting turbines, since cattle usually are not affected by wind turbines. These factors have attracted many local and international developers.

In 2003, the area was studied by collaborative effort between the Ceylon Electricity Board and NREL. The study revealed that the wind resource at the site is favourable only during the Southwest Monsoon, which is only a small period per year, and that the Northeast Monsoons does not reach the area due to its extreme altitude.

  • Ambewela milk

The Ambewela dairy brand was launched in 2004, with the vision of providing a premium quality dairy products to the Sri Lankan consumers and to contribute towards the development of the local dairy industry. Full Cream liquid milk (pure fresh milk) was introduced first under the Ambewela brand. Ambewela is produced using premium quality pure cow’s milk from Ambewela Farm. In the farms, milking is done under strict hygienic conditions, according to the best international dairy practices, resulting in only the purest quality fresh milk, conforming to highest international dairy standards. Ambewela Full Cream milk is UHT processed and aseptically packed, with a shelf life of six months at room temperature. Ambewela has no artificial additives or preservatives. Ambewela milk is the most sought-after milk product especially with parents as it assures a good balance of taste and good health for kids and young adults.

In 2009, realizing the quantum of consumer equity built within the short span of five years, the Ambewela brand was extended to other forms of liquid milk such as UHT Non-fat milk, UHT flavored milk, Cheese and Yoghurt.

Kandalama Lake in Sri Lanka

The Kandalama Reservoir (also erroneously known as the Kandalama Lake) is a reservoir in   Kandalama, Sri Lanka. The reservoir is created by the 21 m (69 ft) high and 1,600 m (5,200 ft) wide Kandalama Dam. Water from the dam is used for irrigation purposes in the region, extending up to Kekirawa. The tank was created by constructing a dam across one of the main tributaries of Kala Wewa – the Mirisgoniya River. During 1952 to 1957, the tank was rehabilitated by Department of Irrigation of Sri Lanka. The reservoir and hotel is situated with the Kalidiya Pokuna Forestarcheological site.

The reservoir measures 4.8 km (3.0 mi) and 2.3 km (1.4 mi) at its longest length and width respectively, with a catchment area of 102 km2 (39.4 sq mi) and a volume of 33,300,000 m3 (1.18×109 cu ft). Due to its scenic surroundings, and year-round water availability, the reservoir is a very popular tourist destination in Sri Lanka.

As well as today Kandalama stands as a testament to ancient architectural knowledge and promotes irrigation and the local fishing industry. It still remains one of the most beautiful reservoirs of the country, admired by the many visitors. . It has also been a famous site of tourism even during the era of the British invasion of Ceylon in the 1800s.

Today Kandalama Wewa Reservoir is an integrated water body of the grand Mahaweli Multipurpose irrigation Scheme and Catchment: 102 Sq.km; length of the dam: 1600meters; height of the dam: 21meters; capacity: 33.3 million cu. Meters.

As well as the reservoir measures 4.8 km (3.0 miles) long and 2.3 km (1.4 miles) across at its largest parts; with a catchment area of 102 km2 (39.4 square miles) and a volume of 33,300,000 m3 (1.18×109 cubic ft). The ancient wall of the dam itself has a massive height of 21 m (69 ft) and width of 1,600 m (5,200 ft), making visitors wonder if it was built by giants. The reservoir has water all throughout the year and provides irrigation extending up to the distant Kekirawa region.

Aware of this peculiarity in the character of their rivers, the Singhalese built retaining walls that support the waters of the lake of Kandelle (Kandalama) with such solidity and massiveness as to defy the utmost fury of the mountain torrents. Nearly the whole of its extent is formed with vast hewn masses of rock, faced with stones eight or ten feet thick at the base, placed like steps, and laid in regular layers, to move which by sheer physical force must have required the united labor of thousands.”

As well as Amongst the craggy regions of the Central province of Sri Lanka is a placid and beautiful man-made lake, which is actually the Kandalama Reservoir. Created by kings of long gone times in order to provide water for farming irrigation; the the Kandelle or Candelay reservoir, as it was also known, is located in the town of Kandalama and was made by damming one of the main tributaries of Kala Wewa.

 

  • Kandalama Wewa ancient irrigation reservoir

Kandalama Wewa ancient irrigation reservoir at Kandalama, Dambulla that extends the lifeline to the cultivators of the agricultural zone is located 8km north-east of UNSECO World Heritage Site of Golden Dambulla Rock Cave Temple. Kandalama Wewa, a loveliest reservoir in Sri Lanka irrigate the farmlands of ; suppot fishery; supply drinking water; provide recreation and relaxation to the cultivators.

Kandalama Wewa ancient man-made irrigation reservoir is nearly surrounded by large hills: and in the extent, where no natural barrier had been in existence for the waters, an embankment was constructed of hewn stones, piled up twenty feet high, and from 150 to 200 feet thick at the base, and a mile and one-thirdlong. .

 

  • Kandalama Hotel

 

 

Seenigama Devalaya in Sri Lanka

Seenigama Devalaya (Temple) is a small village on the south-west coast on the main Colombo-Matara road way. Located just before the Hikkaduwa Town and The Seenigama Devalaya  (shrine) is on a small island short way from the beach.

It is a well-known temple where many of the people in Sri Lanka worship very devotedly. When we consider its location, away from the mainland, it’s wonderful to see a temple which has a history of more than a thousand years, on a small island in the sea, without any destruction. This preservation is a supernatural performance that proves Seenigama is a sacred place.

The Seenigama Devalaya  dedicated to the Devol Deviyo, or God Devol, is a popular destination for people coming from all parts of the country make offering at the shrine. Devol is a local god, who protect the fisherman and their boats and from more recently buses and lorries. This Temple is devoted for Devol Deviyan ( God Devol) and around 300 years old. But some believe that, this place is more than 1000 years old, but there is no any proven evidence. Even though, many visors goes only to the devalaya in the main land the main devalaya is located in a close by island. This one can be reached only by a boat. Many locals used to stop here while on their way to down south.

People coming various parts of island pray for the blessing of the god. Some people come to this place and do various special rituals & offerings and beg the god for punishing their enemies. Specially if someone faced an injustice, if there is no other help, they used to come here and grid chilies. This is to request the god to curse party, who has done injustice to them.

 

People who travel along this temple, offering coins to it as a tribute is a well-known scene. They believe that this makes their journey successful without any accidents. It also shows us the great devotion to the Lord by the people. To get cured from illnesses, for pregnant mothers and also for fishermen, they get blessings by this temple. The annual procession and festival celebrated here lights up the whole region.

The Seenigama Temple, Halle is a popular name among the Hikkaduwa Tourist Attractions. The Seenigama Temple, Hikkaduwa is known as the Seenigama Devalaya in the colloquial Sinhalese. It is located just a few kilometres north of Hikkaduwa, close to Peraliya and Telwatta. As is evident, Devalaya is the term for temple. The Seenigama Temple in Hikkaduwa is situated on the coast of the sea, beyond the 96 km post on the Colombo Gallehighway. Thought to be over millennia old, the Hikkaduwa Seenigama Temple is approximately 1300 years old. However, there is no evidence to provide evidence to this speculation. Whatever historical records have been exhumed, structural evidence states that the Seenigama Temple is above 300 years old.

 

The Seenigama Temple, Hikkaduwa is a testimony both of the historical as well as cultural facet of Galle in Sri Lanka. If you are keen on exploring the conventions of temple worship and knowing all about the temple traditions of Galle, the Seenigama Temple or Seenigama Devalaya is a must visit. The sanctuary is also known as the Seenigama Devol Temple, owing to its patron deity, Devol. Devol is a god of the Buddhist pantheon. The Devol Deviyo or Devol culture is prevalent among theSinhalese and continues to be the most accepted of all forms of worship by the fisher folk in the southern and western lowlands. Devol ceremonies are prominent and often practiced along the coastal areas. Some also guarantee the success of fishing.

The Seenigama Temple, Galle is extremely sacred as it is believed that the deity resolves the problems of human beings. The shrine of the god on the shore was recently constructed. The land on which the Seenigama Temple, Galle was originally located is now an island and can be approached only by boat. The island itself is small with a deep freshwater well.

  • Histroy of Seenigma Devalaya

The Seenigama temple has a golden history of about 1300 years. Lord of the ‘Devol’ temple is Lord Kurumbara.Merchant Kalingapura, had a lot of sons. They were Devol Sami, Induras Sami, Sandaras Sami, Giniras Sami, Buduras Sami and Maha Sami and a daughter known as Padmini. Because his sons were very stubborn, he had put them on a ship and turned them out. On the way they faced a strong storm and ships were destroyed.

Among these princes, only one prince could save his life. He lighted a lamp and it says that Lord Shakra had seen it and created a lime rock to save him. Devol is the prince. Finally he had come to the Seenigama area.  At that time, it says the power of this area had been inherited by Goddess Pattini. She had lighted a fire fence and offered a sacrifice to frighten away Devol Sami. But later, the power of it had been inherited by Devol Sami.

Seenigama temple was started when the minister Deva Pathiraja was made a custodian in this temple for the curing of Dambadeni King Parakramabahu from the illness he got. Also because this temple has a great glory it says that many people from various areas of Sri Lanka used to visit it.

 

  • How got the Name of Seenigama Devalaya

As we travel to its history, we can see that it was also important internationally because the pots, paddy as well as the stones exported to India have been transported along this way. According to history, Seenigama had been important also as a harbour. There are many myths saying how it got its name. Many say, that ‘Seeni’ of Seenigama means anchors and so that it had been the place anchored and it has been known as Seenigama. Some say, because of the Chinese people who came here for trading purposes, it had been known as Cheenagama and later changed to Seenigama.

Except these, there are many more myths. In the past, jaggery has been manufactured by the sugarcane, coconut and palmyrah which have been cultivated here. So that it is called Seenigama. The sea beach is very beautiful. Lord ‘Devol’ who was the chief ruler of Seenigama, had changed the sand into sugar and according to that too, it says that Seenigama name was given.

Riverston Peak in Sri Lanka

The Riverston Peak in Sri Lanka can be reached by travelling, about 30km away from the Matale town, down the Matale – Girandurukotte Road. It is called the Mini World’s End.

  • Mini World’s End

 

Riverston is a tower situated at the edge of Knuckles Mountain Riservaton which is on the way of Matale – Ilukkumbura road. It is about 28 kilometres from the Matale town. The turn to Reverstan Tower is right at the 28km post.There is a gap on the way to the tower, which is so windy. Riverston gap was located in the middle of Rattota – Pallegama road and it was the summit of the same.The area is covered by mist in most of the times. There is a distance of two and half kilometers from the entrance to the tower, where vehicles are not allowed in.

 

 

Though it is very popular among locals, the area is comparatively unknown amongst mainstream tourists. Therefore the area offers up the natural beauty of Sri Lanka. As well as Riverston is one of the most beautiful hill tops of the knuckles mountain range.It is located nearly 30km from Matale town. At Riverston you can experience a heaven like feeling when the clouds cover up the area. The climate of Riverston is cold and breezy.

 

Being located in a windy gap on a range of scenic mountains with frequently changing climate, Riverston was highly popular with local travelers. The climate was changed in every minute. Sometimes it brought little sun rays. Sometime a tiny rain with cool wind. But most of the time we were wrapped with a thick mist. Really that was an amazing experience. as well as some time there is a thick mist. The mist was as thick as to not to see even any things in two meters. The surrounding was freezing & wet but comfortable. Knuckles, is a world heritage rain forest. And Riverston is very rich in bio diversity. You can find fauna and flora which are endemic to Riverston.

 

And also located approximately 30 km from the Matale town, when travelling on Matale – Girandurukotte road, rather windy with quite a few hairpins turns but in good condition, offers great views all around with a mini worlds end, lot less travelled by main stream tourists. Climatic conditions here are very similar to Horton plains with the addition of having two great waterfalls “Sera Ella, Bambarakiri Ella and there are some waterfalls.

  • Sera ella

Sera Ella   is one of the  widest waterfalls in Knuckles range. It’s about 35m width. A Bird species called “Seru” are here to give the name ‘Sera Ella’, This beautiful Sera waterfall fall is situated in the Dumbara Jungle that is split into two sections, both 10m in height.. Sera Ella can be called  the queen out of all the beautiful falls in the area . Furthermore there is a nice foot pathway to the waterfall.

  • Bambarakiriella

This fall height is around 3m and set amidst  the enchanting green forest of the Knuckles mountain range. A suspension bridge crossing the falls adds more beauty to already scenic view. This waterfall can be found at Bambarakiri turn of Matale. It is fairly popular place. It has two waterfalls as Maha-Bambarakiri Ella and Punchi Bambarakiri Ella.

 

  • Raththinda ella

 

This waterfall is situated at Pitawala village in Riverston. It is a water fall  of three parts and clearly visible to surrounding areas like Pitawala Pathana, Maningala. There is a foot pathway towards the middle part of the cascade from Pitawala village. Once you come to the middle part you can go to upper and lower parts of the fall. There is a nice foot pathway which goes along a private land to connect with other side of the waterfall.

 

  • Pathana ella

This 75m tall waterfall is situated at Pitawala Pathana village. Origin is Pathana Dola.. After making Pathana Ella/Fall and Kandi Ella/Fall it joins with Puwakpitiya Ganga. Anyone can observe the full flow  of this waterfall flowing down from Pitawala Pathana to Puwakpitiya village.

 

 

 

Kinniya Hot water wells in Sri Lanka

The Kinniya Hot Springs is a site with hot wells located in Trincomalee, Sri Lanka. There are seven wells in a square shape. Wells are only 3–4 feet deep and you can clearly see the bottom. The temperature is considerably high but varies slightly from one spring to another. Wells run out of water, when 10-15 buckets of water are taken out.

  • The name Kanniya Came from  Kal = stone; niya = land

It seems that most of those artifacts were destroyed during the Sri Lankan Civil War. On 9 September 2011, the seven hot water wells, charity mound and other scattered building ruins in the site were formally recognized by the Government as an Archaeological protected site in Sri Lanka. The designation was declared under the government Gazette number 1723.

Kanniya Hot Water wells has now become a popular attraction for those who visit Trincomalee now that the LTTE Terrorists which controlled this area has been completely wiped out. There are 7 hot springs now converted to bathing wells. The temperature of each is slightly different from each other. It is also believed the water from the wells have therapeutic healing powers and can cure many aliments.

According to the notice board put by the Pradeshiya Saba at the wells, this well goes back to the times of King Ravana who ruled the country over 5000 years ago. But now it has been accepted that these wells belonged to an great Buddhist monastery which span vast area. Ealamisation of the North and East has destroyed the most of the Buddhist remains in these areas and only few has escaped the wrath of the Eelamists who have taken up to the task of erasing all signs of ancient Buddhist civilization in these areas for the last 30-40 years.

 

Luckily, the archeological department has now taken ownership of this land and correct history of these wells are now displayed for the public.

  • History of Kinniya  hot Wells

According to the some information, Kanniya Hot water spring has the history from the King Rawana era. It says that King Ravana stuck the earth with his sward in several spots and several fountains were started on those places. The water was hot and thats the beginning of this hot water springs.

Some believes that this is a part of the Buddhist Monastery and Buddhist Monk used this place as a part of their complex. There are some old ruins scattered over the area. It seems that most of those historical artifacts were destroyed in the war time.

 

Trincomalee and Koneswaram temple

Trincomalee also known as Gokanna, is the administrative headquarters of the Trincomalee District and major resort port city of Eastern Province, Sri Lanka. People from Trincomalee are known as Trincomalians and the local authority is Trincomalee Urban Council. Trincomalee city is home to the famous Koneswaram temple alluded to in its historic Tamil name Thirukonamalai and is home to other historical monuments such as the Bhadrakali Amman temple, Trincomalee, the Trincomalee Hindu Cultural Hall and, opened in 1897, the Trincomalee Hindu College. Trincomalee is also the site of the Trincomalee railway station and an ancient ferry service to Jaffna and the south side of the harbour at Muttur. It is home to major naval and air force bases at the Trincomalee Garrison. The city also has the largest Dutch fort on the island.

 

 

Trincomalee is a port city on the northeast coast of Sri Lanka. Set on a peninsula, Fort Frederick was built by the Portuguese in the 17th century. Within its grounds, the grand Koneswaram Temple stands on Swami Rock cliff, a popular vantage point for blue-whale watching. The holy complex contains ornate shrines and a massive statue of Shiva. Nearby Gokanna Temple has panoramic views over the city and the coastline.

 

 

The recorded history of Trincomalee spans more than Two and a half thousand years, beginning with civilian settlement associated with the Koneswaram temple in the pre-modern era. One of the oldest cities in Asia, it has served as a major maritime seaport in the international trading history of the island with South East Asia.

The harbour is renowned for its large size and security; unlike any other in the Indian Ocean, it is accessible in all weathers to all craft. It has been described as the “finest harbour in the world” and by the British, “the most valuable colonial possession on the globe, as giving to our Indian Empire a security which it had not enjoyed from elsewhere”. Popular tourist destinations include its beaches at Uppuveli, Salli and Nilaveli used for temple visits, surfing, scuba diving, fishing and whale watching, and the Kanniya Hot Springs.

 

  • The Meaning of the Name, Trincomalee – Koneswaram temple

Koneswaram gains its name from the main deity of the temple, the Hindu God Shiva. Shiva, who is also called Eeshwar or Eeshwarar, reigns over the mountain of Holy Konam (Thirukonamalai (Tamil): Thiru – Holy; Konam- Name; Malai – Mountain) hence giving the name Thirukoneshwarar (Thiru-Kona -Eeshwarar). The name ‘Konam’ is believed to have come from the Old Tamil word meaning ‘peak’.

Another name given to the temple is ‘Dakshina Kailayam’; a Sanskrit name meaning ‘Mount Kailash of the South’. Some also call it ‘Aathi Koneswaram, where ‘Aathi’ is the Tamil word for ancient.

 

 

  • History and Legend of Trincomalee – Koneswaram temple

A 17th century stone inscription in the temple states that the temple began its history in 1580 BC. Though this is unconfirmed, the truth remains that the ancient cave shrine that lies beneath the pinnacle of the mountain points towards a history well predating the Sangam Period. It is also a confirmed fact that Koneswaram was a well established and popular temple during the arrival of the exiled Indian prince Vijayan during the 6th century BC.

On the other hand legend states that King Ravana, along with his mother, was a devout worshipper of Koneswaram. Ravana is also supposed to have created the hot springs of Kanniya as part of Thirukoneswaram, for the last rites of his mother. King Ravana was a legendary emperor of Sri Lanka who is believed to have lived over 5000 years ago. If this legend were to be true, then that would indicate that the temple was alive and thriving for over 5000 years.

 

  • About Trincomalee – Koneswaram temple

Koneswaram temple, also known as Dakshinakailasha is a classical-medieval Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva in Trincomalle, Eastern Province in Sri Lanka. The temple is situated atop Konesar Malai, a promontory that overlooks the Indian Ocean, the nearby eastern coast (the Trincomalee District) as well as Trincomalee Harbour or Gokarna Bay.

Thirukoneswaram, or the Holy Koneswaram Temple, is a Hindu temple in Thirukonamalai (Trincomalee) on the east coast of Sri Lanka. The temple lies on a high rocky promontory surrounded on three sides by the sea. It bears a history of over three millennia with its records indicating its roots in 1580 BC. This, still beautiful, historical monument is what remains of what once was a sprawling temple city equal to the ancient city of Madurai, India.

 

Konesvaram is revered as one the Pancha Ishwarams, of Sri Lanka for long time. Being a major place for Hindu pilgrimage, it was labeled “Rome of the Gentiles/Pagans of the Orient” in some records. Konesvaram holds a significant role in the religious and cultural history of Sri Lanka, as it was likely built during the reign of the early Cholas and The five Dravidians of the Early Pandyan Kingdom.

Koneswaram has many strong historical associations. The shrine is described in the Vayu Purana, the Konesar Kalvettu and Tevaramhymns by Sambandhar and Sundarar as a Paadal Petra Sthalam along with its west coast counterpart Ketheeswaram temple, Mannar, it is the birthplace of Patanjali, and the compiler of the Yoga Sutrasand was praised for its tradition by Arrunagirinathar upon his visit. The Dakshina Kailasa Puranam and Manmiam works note it as Dakshina/Then Kailasam (Mount Kailash of the South) for its longitudinal position and pre-eminence, it lies directly east of Kudiramalaiwest coast Hindu port town, while it is the easternmost shrine of the five ancient Iswarams of Shiva on the island.

 

 

Mentioned as a widely popular bay temple of the island in the Mahabharata, Ramayana and Yalpana Vaipava Malai, the Mattakallappu Manmiam confirms its sacred status for all Hindus. Kachiyappa Sivachariar’s Kanda Puranam compares the temple to Thillai Chidambaram Templeand Mount Kailash in Saivite esteem. Konesar Malai may have been the site where Yoga originated; some scholars have suggested that the worship of the almighty god Eiswara on the promontory is the most ancient form of worship existing. Dr. Paul E. Pieris declared in 1917, at a meeting of the Royal Asiatic Society (Ceylon Branch), there was in Lanka five recognised ‘Eeswararns’ of Siva, which claimed and received adoration of all India. These were Tiruketheesvaramnear,Mahathitha, Munneswaram, Thondeswaram, Naguleswaram and Tirukoneswaram.

 

 

Sembuwatta Lake in Sri Lanka

Sembuwatta Lake is a tourist attraction situated at Elkaduwa in the Matale District of Sri Lanka, adjacent to the Campbell’s Lane Forest Reserve. Sembuwatta Lake is a man-made lake created from natural spring water. Alongside the lake is a natural swimming pool. Swimming pool with natural spring water is there surrounded by the tea estate.

This Lake Sembuwtta, a heavenly beautiful lake of natural spring water which is one of the major attractions in the hill country. Set amidst a widely spread tea gardens, its calm, cool environment is one of the most charming you could find in the area. Rising above the lake are the beautiful green mountains with a thick pines forest where you can take time to climb up. Beside the lake, there is a pool with natural spring water, there are summer huts and cottages around this magnificent lake and you will be amazed to find how calm, quiet and peaceful the environment around lake Sembuwatta. As well as it is set amongst the sprawling tea gardens, and reflects the environment at its most magnificent.

 

 

 

It is situated 25 Km away from the Matale city and 30 km away from Kandy. Sembuwaththa Lake is nearly 170km from the capital city of the Island, Colombo and 22km from Matale town. The travelers have to pass the hard turning yet totally alluring roads between Elkaduwa town and Sembuwaththa Lake. The road from Elkaduwa to Sembuaththa Lake is narrow and too many bends. Road is not in very good condition but can be reached by a car.

Sembuwatta Lake is believed to be 9 m (30 ft) to 12 m (39 ft) deep. Currently The Lake belongs to the Elkaduwa Plantations Ltd. The lake is maintained and kept opened to the visitors by the Cooperative Society of the Elkaduwa State Workers. Therefore, when you enter the lake you will have to pay. On the way to the lake you will see the pipe lines which are used to generate electricity to run the factory and a small waterfall where the pipe lines get its water.

The area is owned, preserved and maintained by the estate. As we hear, the lake dates back to 1960’s. Even though it has such a long history, Sembuwatta got popular as a tourist attraction only about 5 years ago. Probably the Estate opened it for viewing at that time. Within few years, this beautiful place was known by many travelers who loves mountains and lakes and of course, by photographers. And also Sembuwaththa Lake and Leisure Park is designed in a way to provide a fantastic holiday destination with lots of leisure activities and facilities by the present management.

 

 

 

 

Adisham Bungalow or Adisham Hall in Sri Lanka

Adisham Bungalow or Adisham Hall is a Country house near Haputale, in the Badulla District, Sri Lanka.  At present, it houses the Adisham monastery of Saint Benedict. It has a relic (a chip of a bone) of St. Sylvester at the chapel.

 

Adisham Bungalow is a nineteenth-century British period building, which was modelled on Leeds Castle in Kent, England. Sir Thomas Villiers, a distinguished British resident in Sri Lanka in the early 20th century, used it as his country house. Later it became a Benedictine monastery. The Thangamale Bird Sanctuary is located next to the bungalow.

A four km drive from Haputale will lead you to Adisham, a monastery run by Benedictine Monks. Wrapped in the tranquility of the misty hills, Adisham Bungalow attracts every eye that falls on it. The pages of history reveal that the creator of this enthralling place is Sir Thomas Lister Villiers. Sir Thomas Lister Villiers was born in 1869 in Adisham, an ancient village which lies in the hollow of the Kent country side. He was the son of Reverend Prebendary Henry Montegu Villiers who belonged to Clarendon family and his mother was Lady Victoria Russell the daughter of (Grandfather of Sir Thomas Lister Villiers) who was twice the prime minister of Britain (1846 – 52, & 1865 – 66). As leader of the Whig party, he was most responsible for changing its name to the Liberal Party.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Adisham Bungalow Furnitures

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Adisham Bungalow Fruit Products

 

The house was built in 1931 by an English aristocrat and planter Sir Thomas Villiers, former Chairman of George Steuart Co, a trading and estate agency based in Colombo. Sir Thomas was a grandson of Lord John Russell and descendant of the Dukes of Bedford. Named after Adisham, it was designed by R. Booth and F. Webster in Tudor and Jacobean style, on 10 acres (40,000 m2) of land. Adisham Hall played host to many prominent personalities of the colony until the retirement of Sir Thomas, after which it was sold to Sedawatte Mills in 1949. In 1961 it was purchased by the Roman Catholic Church and was subsequently converted to a monastery. The house is well preserved along with its period fittings and furniture, and is open to visitors.

 

History of Adisham Bungalow or Adisham Hall

He also strongly opposed the employment of children as domestic servants and maintained that the state had an obligation to provide all children with an education so that they could improve their position in life. Sir Thomas also appealed to the members to support the introduction of adult franchise unanimously. He was also among those who wanted adultery made a criminal offence. During that time when the question of establishing a non-residential university in Colombo or a residential university in Kandy arose, Sir Thomas was a member of this commission. He finally selected the new Peradeniya Estate for a residential university.

He was for several years the Trustee for the Church of England. He was both a parishioner and a benefactor of St. Michael’s Church Polwatte. He was also the patron of St. Michael’s Sports Club. Expanding his services to this small island nation he wrote three books which include a book on some tea industry pioneers published in 1951. The youth who stepped into Ceylon converted into a man of knowledge and of great service and returned to the United Kingdom at the age of 82. There he entered his second marriage with a Ceylonese called Marjorie Keyt who nursed Sir Thomas throughout an illness he suffered. She also spent a part of her life as his secretary cum companion before uniting with him in marriage. She was a daughter of Edwin Keyt of Colombo. The wedding took place in the fashionable London Church of St. Paul’s, Knightsbridge where Sir Thomas’ father had once being the vicar.

Sir Thomas Lister Villiers gained his education at Sherborne School. After completing his studies he chose to come to Ceylon as a trainee on Elbedde Estate, Bogawantalawa. Thus, a young man with just 10 pounds in his pocket began building his life here in Ceylon. In 1896 Thomas Villiers married Evelyn Hope, a daughter of the planter W. H. Walker of Punduloya North. The wedding took place at the Holy Trinity Church, Nuwara Eliya. Evelyn Hope was a keen painter and her paintings decorate Adisham walls even at present. She gave birth to their first son lieutenant Henry Lister Villiers in 1897, who was later killed in action on 4th February 1917. Their second son was commander Thomas Hyde Villiers who was born on 15th January 1902 and died in 1955

Sir Thomas was always aware of his responsibilities and thus was in touch with the directors at of George Stuarts until his very last days. In the late fifties Sir Thomas wrote a letter to the Wages Commission mentioning that it was very necessary to introduce weekly wages in Ceylon. After enjoying a healthy and a vigorous life Sir Thomas Villiers passed away on December 21st in 1959. The funeral service took place at St. Paul’s Knights bridge while the cremation was held at Pulury Vale. Lady Villiers also died in London in 1964 at the age of 60.

The Villiers presence in Ceylon concluded but their pleasant memories and the life story is carved in every stone that holds up the Adisham bungalow in Haputale.It was while he was chairman of George Steuarts that Sir Thomas commenced building his dream home in the country. He selected a peaceful site at Haputale, surrounded by beautiful forest called Tangamalai which means Golden Hills. The piece of land was alienated because of its 5,000 feet elevation. Yet it was not a barrier for Sir Thomas. A road was cut through the forest to pave the way to reach the land which commanded views across hills and valleys and the highest mountain ranges of Ceylon. On a clear day, a sightseer will be privileged to view Totapolakanda, Hakgala, Piduruthalagala, the Uda Pussellawa range of mountains known as the sleeping warrior, Diyatalawa Army Camp, Namunukula and numerous other mountains which stretch out for miles on end. The building and garden are on ten acres on land which formed a part of the forest reserve. Cutting the site in preparation for the building commenced in 1929.

Sir Thomas Lister Villiers gained his education at Sherborne School. After completing his studies he chose to come to Ceylon as a trainee on Elbedde Estate, Bogawantalawa. Thus, a young man with just 10 pounds in his pocket began building his life here in Ceylon. In 1896 Thomas Villiers married Evelyn Hope, a daughter of the planter W. H. Walker of Punduloya North. The wedding took place at the Holy Trinity Church, Nuwara Eliya. Evelyn Hope was a keen painter and her paintings decorate Adisham walls even at present. She gave birth to their first son lieutenant Henry Lister Villiers in 1897, who was later killed in action on 4th February 1917. Their second son was commander Thomas Hyde Villiers who was born on 15th January 1902 and died in 1955

The house was designed in the Tudor style, on the lines of Leeds Castle in Kent, with stout granite walls of locally quarried stone, long, narrow turret windows and chimneys. It looked in every detail an Elizabethan country mansion flowing in the memories of Sir Thomas Villiers’ well-loved home in Kent and his childhood memories. The house gave an onlooker a sense solidity, permanence and stability.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pidurangala Rock and Pidurangala Viharaya

  • Pidurangala Rock

Pidurangala is a massive rock formation located a few kilometers north of Sigiriya in Sri Lanka. It has an interesting history closely related to that of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress. Climbing to the top of Pidurangala Rock is more strenuous than climbing Sigiriya. If you are fit and adventurous it is a climb worth making. It will take you about two hours.

Sigiriya Rock is rich in history and has some pretty dramatic features such as the lion’s paw and the mirror wall, Pidurangala Rock has a much more natural feel, despite also housing a temple. Pidurangala Rock is adjacent to Sigiriya Rock and is the best viewing spot of Sigiriya Rock as it is only slightly lower. Pidurangala is a popular spot for sunrise as you can enjoy 360-degree views of not only the valleys but also Sigiriya Rock.

Many travelers wake up for the sunrise at Pidurangala and then head to sunset on top of Sigiriya Rock. A mile north of the Sigiriya Citadel is Pidurangala which served as the royal monastery. A despoiled dagaba at the foot of the hill could well have been the cremation site of King Kashyapa who founded the Citadel. Carbon dating at the site coincides with the traditional date of the demise of the King.

Above the modern temple are the old image houses. A flight of steps leads to the summit, where a long cave has a large recumbent image of the Buddha in brick and stucco. It has been dated to the late Anuradhapura period around the 10th century.

 

 

 

  • Pidurangala Viharaya

Pidurangala Vihara is an ancient Buddhist temple situated in Pidurangala village of Matale District, Sri Lanka. The temple was constructed on a massive rock called Pidurangala, which is located a few kilometers north of the historical fort Sigiriya. The temple was said to be ‘panchavasa’, consisting of five main ritual buildings. Among the buildings are Ancient stupa, Chapter House, Image House, Bodhighara, Preaching hall, Sangharama (Bikku Residence Building) and inscriptions with drip ledged caves can be seen.

The Royal Cave Temple is survived only by a few remains. A rock wall still stands to show the foundation of what was once a rock temple. We missed it on the way up in the dark but stopped to check it out on the way down. A huge reclining Buddha lays inside the temple and we also didn’t stop to take it in on the hike up but it was unmissable on the way down. It has been reconstructed with bricks but much of the original structure remains intact.

 

 

 

 

  • About history in pidurangala Viharaya

It is believed that the history of Pidurangala Vihara goes back beyond to the first and second century BC.From those days Pidurangala was used as a Buddhist monastery and but became a prominent place during the reign of King Dhatusena (473 – 495 AC).

According to ancient chronicles, Prince Kashyapa had killed his father King Dhatusena and fled to Sigiriya to find out a more secure place to prevent retaliation attacks from his half-brother Mugalan, with the arrival of King Kashyapa, the Bhikkus who were medidated there were requested move to the nearby Pidurangala. In a sort of compensation, King Kashyapa refurbished the temple and made it a prominent place.

 

 

 

 

 

Matale Alu Viharaya in Sri Lanka

The Matale Alu Viharaya is a sacred Buddhist temple located in Aluvihare, Matale district in Sri Lanka. (Matale-Dambulla road and about 2 miles from the city of Alu Viharaya). Surrounded by hills, the famous Aluvihara cave temple 30 km south of Kandy on the Matale-Dambulla road is of great historic importance. It is of historical importance place and also called Aluvihare Rock Temple.

AFTER THEN/The Aloka Vihara became Aluvihara. Folklore has many meanings to the name Aluvihara. One is that the Pali word Aloka was Alu (light) in ancient Sinhala and as it was the abode of Theras, it was a Viharaya. Hence the two words have been coined to make it Aluvihara. Another view is that although there is a huge rock, east of the main rock cave, it has not cut off the light. Therefore it was known as the Aloka lena (cave with light).

The history of Aluvihare Rock Temple is traced back to the 3rd Century B.C to the reign King Devanampiyatissa, It is believed that the King built the dagoba, planted the Bo sapling and founded the temple after the introduction of Buddhism to the country during his reign.

Ven. Dr. Inamaluwe Nandarathana Thera, the trustee of the Viharaya said that this June 1, 2012 Department of Agriculture, Peradeniya had inspected the tree and shifted a root to grow in another direction, avoiding a section of a rock. The Ven. Thera says that it started to grow thereafter and is fairly tall now.

It had been the practice in Buddhism to hand down the sacred literature orally, from one generation to the next. It is recorded that during King Valagamba’s rule, the Pali canon was recited and along with the commentaries and it was written down in a cave at Alu Vihara.

Aluvihare Rock Temple was the historic location where the Pali Canon was first written down completely in text on ola (palm) leaves.Many monastery caves, some of which exhibit frescoes are situated near this temple.

At present there are 13 rock caves. The Ven. Dr. Inamaluwe Nandarathana Thera had cleared three caves that were overgrown with shrubs and buried under soil just three years ago. He remembered seeing these buried rocks as a young child when he came to the temple premises. He used his own funds and cleared the caves.