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Top Ten Scenic Viewpoints In Sri Lanka 2024

Top Ten Scenic Viewpoints In Sri Lanka 2023

Sri Lanka, an island nation in the Indian Ocean, is a captivating destination with abundant natural beauty. From lush mountains to pristine beaches, this tropical paradise offers many breathtaking, awe-inspiring vistas.

This article will explore the top ten scenic viewpoints in Sri Lanka, showcasing the country’s diverse landscapes and providing visitors with unforgettable panoramic views. Whether you are an adventurous trekker or a nature lover seeking tranquility, these stunning viewpoints offer an escape into serenity and allow you to immerse yourself in the remarkable wonders of Sri Lanka’s scenery.

So pack your bags and prepare to embark on a visual journey through some of the most mesmerizing locations this enchanting island offers! 1. Ella Rock – Located in the charming town of Ella, this viewpoint offers a trekking adventure. As you hike up the rugged trails, be prepared to witness breathtaking views of rolling tea plantations and cascading waterfalls. Once you reach the summit of Ella Rock, you will be rewarded with a bird’s-eye view of the mesmerizing Ella Gap, a vast valley surrounded by dense forests.

Latest update: February 12, 2024

 Ella in Sri Lanka

One of the top scenic viewpoints in Sri Lanka is the town of Ella. Nestled amidst lush green hills and tea plantations, Ella offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. One favored viewpoint in Ella is the famous Ella Gap, which provides a panoramic vista of the valley below and the distant mountains beyond. Visitors can take a leisurely hike to Little Adam’s Peak, another picturesque viewpoint that offers stunning views of rolling hills and tea estates.

Ella is also home to the iconic Nine Arch Bridge, an architectural marvel surrounded by dense jungle foliage. This bridge offers visitors a unique vantage point to witness passing trains amidst verdant landscapes.

 Additionally, Ravana Falls, located just outside Ella, provides yet another splendid view for nature enthusiasts. The cascading waterfall plunges from a height into a crystal clear pool below, creating an enchanting scene that captivates all who visit Ella in Sri Lanka.

Ella is a haven for nature lovers and a paradise for adventure enthusiasts. The surrounding hills and mountains offer fantastic hiking, trekking, and rock climbing opportunities. Numerous trails lead to breathtaking viewpoints, hidden caves, and ancient Buddhist temples.

One of the most popular hikes in Ella is the journey to Ella Rock. This challenging yet rewarding trek takes you through lush tea plantations and dense forests before reaching the summit.

 Nuwara Eliya

Nuwara Eliya, also known as Little England, is a picturesque town in the heart of Sri Lanka’s hill country. Surrounded by lush tea plantations and misty mountains, Nuwara Eliya offers breathtaking views, making it one of the top scenic viewpoints in the country. One such viewpoint is Gregory Lake, a tranquil spot where visitors can enjoy a leisurely boat ride or soak in the stunning vistas.

Another must-visit viewpoint in Nuwara Eliya is the Pedro Tea Estate. Offering panoramic views of endless tea terraces against a backdrop of rolling hills, this enchanting location allows visitors to witness firsthand how tea is grown and produced. Moreover, they can indulge in an authentic cup of Ceylon tea while marveling at the beauty surrounding them.

In addition to these scenic viewpoints, Nuwara Eliya boasts many other attractions, such as lush gardens, colonial architecture, and cascading waterfalls. With its cool climate and serene ambiance, this charming town provides an ideal escape from the bustling cities of Sri Lanka. It promises unforgettable experiences for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike.

Read also: 10 Amazing Destinations to Add to Your Travel Bucket List

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is a popular tourist attraction in Sri Lanka, known for its large population of rescued elephants. Located in the Kegalle District, this orphanage was established in 1975 as a sanctuary for abandoned or injured elephants. Today, it houses around 90 elephants, making it one of the largest captive elephant populations in the world.

Visitors to Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage can witness these majestic creatures up close and personal. The orphanage offers activities such as feeding sessions and bath time, where visitors can watch the elephants bathed and frolicking in the nearby river. This unique opportunity allows tourists to understand these gentle giants better while supporting their conservation efforts.

Furthermore, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage provides an enriching experience for animal lovers who want to contribute positively towards wildlife conservation. The dedicated staff at the orphanage work tirelessly to ensure the well-being of each elephant under their care. Visitors can also learn about the challenges these intelligent animals face due to poaching and habitat loss, raise awareness about their plight, and inspire action on behalf of endangered species worldwide.

Polonnaruwa

Polonnaruwa, located in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the country’s ancient capitals. The city dates back to the 10th century and is renowned for its well-preserved ruins, which offer visitors a glimpse into the grandeur of ancient Sri Lankan civilization. One of the top attractions in Polonnaruwa is the Gal Vihara, a rock temple housing four massive Buddha statues carved out of granite. These statues are considered masterpieces of Sri Lankan art and are known for their intricate detailing.

Another must-see site in Polonnaruwa is the Royal Palace complex, which served as the residence for Sri Lankan kings during that time. Although now in ruins, it still showcases impressive architectural features like ornamental ponds and beautifully crafted stone carvings.

A visit to Polonnaruwa also offers an opportunity to explore stunning artificial lakes such as Parakrama Samudra and Topa Wewa, which were constructed by ancient rulers for irrigation purposes but now add to the region’s scenic beauty. Whether you’re interested in history or simply looking to immerse yourself in nature’s splendor, a trip to Polonnaruwa should be on your itinerary when visiting Sri Lanka.

Adams Peak

Adams Peak, also known as Sri Pada, is a prominent pilgrimage site in Sri Lanka. Located in the country’s central highlands, it stands tall at 2,243 meters. The peak holds immense religious significance for multiple faiths, including Buddhism, Hinduism, and Christianity. The highlight of Adams Peak is the sacred footprint at its summit, which is believed to be that of Lord Buddha by Buddhists and Lord Shiva by Hindus.

Besides its religious importance, Adams Peak offers breathtaking views that attract nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike. Visitors climb the countless steps to the top and are rewarded with stunning vistas of rolling hills covered in lush greenery.

Watching the sunrise from this vantage point is truly magical as hues of orange and pink paint the sky while mist slowly lifts off the mountains below. This awe-inspiring panorama and serene surroundings make Adams Peak one of Sri Lanka’s most sought-after viewpoints for capturing postcard-perfect photographs or simply immersing oneself in nature’s beauty.

Read also: The Top Ten Destinations for Adventure Travelers

Mirissa

Mirissa is a coastal town in southern Sri Lanka known for its breathtaking scenic beauty. Mirissa offers visitors a picture-perfect view of paradise with its pristine beaches and crystal-clear turquoise waters. The palm-fringed shoreline stretches for miles, providing the ideal setting for sunbathing, swimming, and enjoying water sports.

One of the most famous viewpoints in Mirissa is the Parrot Rock viewpoint. This small rock formation is situated just off the coast and offers panoramic views of the surrounding ocean and beach. It is a great spot to capture stunning photographs or soak in the natural beauty.

Another must-visit viewpoint is Coconut Tree Hill. As the name suggests, it is adorned with numerous coconut trees that sway gently in the sea breeze. Visitors can admire an uninterrupted view of Mirissa Beach and beyond from this vantage point.

Overall, Mirissa boasts some of Sri Lanka’s most picturesque viewpoints that will surely leave travelers mesmerized by their sheer beauty. Whether watching a glorious sunset over Parrot Rock or gazing at endless coconut trees from Coconut Tree Hill, visiting these scenic spots in Mirissa should be on every traveler’s itinerary when exploring Sri Lanka’s coastline.

Yala National Park

One of the most breathtaking scenic viewpoints in Sri Lanka can be found within Yala National Park. As the second largest national park in the country, Yala is renowned for its diverse landscapes and abundant wildlife. The park boasts an impressive coastline, dense jungles, open grasslands, and serene lakes, each offering a unique panoramic view that will leave visitors in awe.

One of the must-visit spots within Yala National Park is the Katagamuwa viewpoint. Situated at a high altitude, this viewpoint provides a mesmerizing 360-degree view of the surrounding wilderness. From here, visitors can witness vast stretches of lush greenery merging with pristine blue waters in the distance.

Another notable viewpoint in Yala National Park is located near the Kumbukkan Oya reservoir. This spot offers an incredible vista of the tranquil waters and sprawling grasslands stretching as far as the eye can see. It’s a remarkable sight, especially during sunrise or sunset when nature paints the skies with vibrant hues.

Colombo

One of the most breathtaking and must-visit scenic viewpoints in Sri Lanka is undoubtedly the iconic Galle Face Green in Colombo. Stretching along the beautiful Indian Ocean, this promenade offers a stunning panoramic view of the sunset, where locals and tourists gather to witness nature’s masterpiece.

The open expanse of greenery combined with the crashing waves creates a serene atmosphere, making it an ideal spot for those seeking solace amidst bustling city life. Another captivating viewpoint in Colombo is located atop the Lotus Tower, one of South Asia’s tallest towers. Standing at an impressive height of 356 meters, this architectural marvel provides visitors with mesmerizing vistas of the cityscape and beyond.

From this vantage point, one can admire Colombo’s vibrant skyline with modern skyscrapers juxtaposed against historic landmarks like Independence Square and Beira Lake. As night falls, witnessing the city illuminate under a starry sky from above becomes an unforgettable experience that truly captures Colombo’s charm.

Finally, no list would be complete without mentioning Mount Lavinia Beach as a prime scenic viewpoint in Colombo. Located just outside the city center, this golden sandy beach offers visitors a tranquil escape from urban chaos while embracing picturesque views of Indian Ocean sunsets. With palm trees swaying gently in the sea breeze and fishing boats dotting the horizon, Mount Lavinia Beach delivers postcard-worthy scenery that leaves travelers captivated by its natural beauty.

Jaffna

Jaffna, located in the northern part of Sri Lanka, is a city that offers breathtaking scenic views. One such viewpoint is the Jaffna Fort, which stands tall and majestic, overlooking the town. Its ancient architecture and commanding presence provide visitors with a panoramic view of the surrounding areas, including the sparkling waters of Jaffna Lagoon.

Another must-visit spot for stunning vistas is Nagadeepa Purana Vihara, an ancient Buddhist temple on an island off the coast of Jaffna. As you step foot on this sacred land and climb up to the top of the temple, you will be greeted by awe-inspiring views of the vast ocean stretching out endlessly before you. The sight of waves crashing against rocky shores and a sense of serenity makes this place truly mesmerizing.

Whether exploring historical sites or seeking tranquility amidst nature’s beauty, Jaffna promises to leave you spellbound with its incredible scenic viewpoints.

Ulpotha

One of the top scenic viewpoints in Sri Lanka is Ulpotha, a remote and serene village nestled amidst lush greenery and ancient ruins. Located in the heart of the country, Ulpotha offers breathtaking views of rolling hills, mist-covered mountains, and picturesque lakes. The village is surrounded by dense forests and traditional paddy fields, creating a tranquil atmosphere perfect for relaxation and rejuvenation.

Ulpotha is not only known for its stunning natural beauty but also for its rich cultural heritage. The village has a history dating back thousands of years and is home to ancient Buddhist temples and rock caves adorned with intricate murals. Visitors can explore these historical sites while enjoying panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.

In addition to its natural beauty and cultural significance, Ulpotha offers unique experiences for travelers seeking wellness retreats. The village is famous for its Ayurvedic treatments and yoga retreats, allowing visitors to unwind and reconnect with nature. With its idyllic surroundings and therapeutic practices, Ulpotha truly offers a one-of-a-kind experience that will leave you feeling refreshed and inspired.

Conclusion: 

In conclusion, Sri Lanka is a paradise for nature lovers and those seeking breathtaking landscapes. From the lush tea plantations in Nuwara Eliya to the awe-inspiring Ella Rock viewpoint, there are numerous places to explore and soak in the beauty of this island country. The scenic train ride from Kandy to Ella offers postcard-perfect views of rolling hills, waterfalls, and picturesque villages.

Furthermore, Sri Lanka’s national parks, like Yala and Udawalawe, are home to diverse wildlife and offer stunning vistas of untouched wilderness. The iconic Sigiriya Rock Fortress stands tall amidst a dramatic landscape, offering panoramic views worth every step climbed. And let’s not forget about the stunning beaches that dot Sri Lanka’s coastline – with golden sands and crystal-clear waters, they provide a perfect backdrop for relaxation and rejuvenation.

In conclusion, embracing the breathtaking landscapes of Sri Lanka means immersing oneself in a world of natural wonders, be it mountains, forests, waterfalls, or beaches. With its rich biodiversity and diverse topography, this tropical gem has something for every nature enthusiast looking for an unforgettable experience. So pack your bags and get ready to explore the stunning scenic viewpoints that await you in Sri Lanka!

FAQs | Top Ten Scenic Viewpoints In Sri Lanka 

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When it comes to determining which side of Sri Lanka is the best, it largely depends on your preferences and what you are looking for in your travel experience. Sri Lanka is a beautiful island nation located in the Indian Ocean, with stunning beaches and diverse landscapes on both sides.
The west coast of Sri Lanka is known for its vibrant cities like Colombo, Negombo, and Galle. This side offers a mix of modern amenities, historical sites, and bustling markets. The west coast also boasts some beautiful beaches such as Mount Lavinia Beach and Bentota Beach, where you can enjoy water sports or simply relax by the sea.

On the east coast of Sri Lanka, you will find more pristine and less crowded beaches compared to the west coast. Places like Arugam Bay and Trincomalee are popular among surfers due to their excellent waves. The east coast also offers opportunities for snorkeling, diving, and exploring marine life. Additionally, this side of Sri Lanka is famous for its cultural heritage sites like Polonnaruwa and Sigiriya.

Ultimately, whether you choose the west or east coast of Sri Lanka depends on your preferences for city life versus secluded beaches and cultural exploration versus water sports. Both sides have their own unique charm and attractions that make them worth visiting.

The most visited site in Sri Lanka is the ancient city of Sigiriya. Located in the central Matale District, Sigiriya is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a popular tourist destination. It is renowned for its impressive rock fortress, which dates back to the 5th century AD. The site attracts visitors from all over the world who come to admire its stunning frescoes, landscaped gardens, and panoramic views from the summit.
Another highly visited site in Sri Lanka is the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy. As one of Buddhism's most sacred sites, it houses a tooth relic believed to be that of Lord Buddha himself. The temple complex also includes various shrines and museums that offer insight into Sri Lanka's rich cultural and religious heritage. As a result, it draws both pilgrims and tourists who are interested in exploring Buddhism and experiencing the country's spiritual traditions.

Both Sigiriya and the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic exemplify Sri Lanka's historical significance and cultural diversity, making them must-visit destinations for travelers seeking a deeper understanding of this beautiful island nation.

Sri Lanka is famous for its stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and delicious cuisine. The country is known for its picturesque landscapes, including beautiful beaches, lush tea plantations, and breathtaking mountains. Sri Lanka is also home to an abundance of wildlife, with national parks offering opportunities to spot elephants, leopards, and a wide variety of bird species.
In addition to its natural wonders, Sri Lanka boasts a vibrant cultural scene. The country has a long history dating back thousands of years and is dotted with ancient temples, palaces, and ruins that showcase its fascinating past. Traditional arts such as dance and music are deeply ingrained in Sri Lankan culture and are often performed during festivals and ceremonies.

Lastly, Sri Lankan cuisine is renowned for its bold flavors and unique combinations of spices. From mouthwatering curries to fragrant rice dishes, the local food scene offers a wide array of options for food enthusiasts. Don't miss out on trying traditional dishes like hoppers (a type of pancake), kottu roti (chopped flatbread stir-fry), or string hoppers (steamed rice noodles). Overall, Sri Lanka's fame stems from its natural beauty, cultural heritage, and delectable cuisine.

 

The number of days needed to explore Sri Lanka depends on your travel preferences and the specific places you want to visit. However, a minimum of 7-10 days is generally recommended to get a good taste of what the country has to offer.
If you have limited time, it's possible to cover the highlights in a shorter period. For example, you could focus on popular destinations like Colombo, Kandy, Sigiriya, and Galle. This would allow you to experience cultural sites, ancient ruins, beautiful beaches, and even wildlife encounters.

On the other hand, if you have more time available, extending your stay to around 14-21 days would enable you to delve deeper into Sri Lanka's diverse attractions. You could venture into national parks for safari experiences, explore tea plantations in the hill country, relax on pristine beaches in the east coast or go snorkeling/diving along the southern coast.

Ultimately, the ideal duration for your Sri Lanka trip depends on your interests and what you hope to experience during your visit.

The best area to stay in Sri Lanka largely depends on your preferences and the purpose of your visit. However, there are a few popular areas that are often recommended by travelers.
One highly recommended area is Colombo, the capital city of Sri Lanka. It offers a mix of modern amenities and historical charm, with its bustling markets, colonial architecture, and vibrant nightlife. Colombo also serves as a convenient base for exploring other parts of the country, as it has good transportation links.

Another popular area is Galle, located on the southwestern coast of Sri Lanka. Known for its stunning beaches and well-preserved colonial architecture, Galle offers a laid-back atmosphere and plenty of opportunities for relaxation. The city is also home to the famous Galle Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage site that provides breathtaking views of the ocean.

Ultimately, the best area to stay in Sri Lanka will depend on your personal preferences and interests. Whether you're seeking cultural experiences, natural beauty, or beachside relaxation, there are numerous areas in Sri Lanka that can cater to your needs.

Sri Lanka is generally considered to be a relatively affordable destination for travelers. The cost of living in Sri Lanka is lower compared to many other popular tourist destinations, making it an attractive option for budget-conscious travelers. Accommodation options range from budget guesthouses and hostels to luxury resorts, catering to different budgets.
In terms of food, you can find inexpensive local eateries serving traditional Sri Lankan cuisine at affordable prices. Street food is also widely available and offers a delicious and cheap way to sample the local flavors. Transportation costs are also reasonable, with public buses and trains being the most economical options for getting around the country.

However, it's important to note that prices can vary depending on the region and season. Popular tourist spots tend to have higher prices compared to more off-the-beaten-path locations. Additionally, activities such as entrance fees for attractions and guided tours may add up to your overall expenses. Overall, with careful planning and budgeting, it is possible to have a fulfilling trip in Sri Lanka without breaking the bank

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