Fun Things To Do In Haputale With Your Friends
Get your best friends, book your tickets and fly down to Sri Lanka for a friends’ getaway. Our island has a host of things waiting for you and the gang to take part in, especially in the misty, quiet town of Haputale! Nestled on the southern edge of the hill country, it is famous for its lush greenery, tall mountains, waterfalls and extremely beautiful vistas. From long treks through Horton Plains to a hike up Diyaluma Waterfall, here are some fun things to do with your buddies.
Horton Plains National Park
Fancy a trek through Horton Plains National Park? Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Horton Plains National Park is home to many endemic species of flora and fauna, such as the Nelu flower which only blooms every 12 years, as well as the elusive leopards and sambar deer, to name a few. Set forth on a trail that takes you on a loop around the park which is about 9.5km. On your trail, you’ll come across the park’s two main highlights; Baker’s Falls and World’s End. The World’s End precipice is perhaps the most exciting part about the trek, due to the jaw-dropping views of the surroundings and the steep 4,000 ft drop! Be sure to visit before 10 am, as the weather gets fairly unpredictable after that.
Tip – Carrying plastics into the park is strictly prohibited. So make sure your snacks and water are packed in an eco-friendly way. Cigs and lighters (or match boxes) aren’t permitted either.
This is quite possibly the most fun thing to do in Haputale! Diyaluma Falls is Sri Lanka’s second tallest waterfall and hiking to the top should be on your bucket list. There are three different trails to reach the summit, but the most popular trail and easiest is the Uda Diyaluma trail. The trail meanders through forests and lemongrass plantations, so for a while, you will be walking through citrus-scented air.
The climb takes roughly about an hour, and once you reach the top you will be greeted by one of the most stunning views in Haputale– definitely a great place for an Instagram picture! There are seven levels to the falls, each offering a fantastic view of the surrounding greenery with its own natural rock pools to swim in. The best time to visit is during the drier months between January – August before the monsoon season sets in.
Tip – Cool off from the hike with a dip in one of the natural infinity pools.
Dambatenne Tea Factory
Love tea? Head to this tea factory to learn how Ceylon’s finest is plucked before its processed and packaged. Dambatenne Tea Factory was built by Sir Thomas Lipton, one of the founding fathers of Ceylon Tea. This Scottish businessman lived in Ceylon and introduced tea gardens to the island with James Taylor in the 1860’s.
The Dambatenne Tea Factory was built in 1890 by Lipton himself where it produced the first batch of the world-renowned Lipton Ceylon Tea. Over 100 years later and the factory is still in mint, operating condition. Embark on a tea factory tour with your pals and take a walk back in time too. You’ll learn about the intricate process of manufacturing a cup of Ceylon’s tea too.
Tip – Head to the tea shop at the end of the tour where you can buy your favourite box to take back with you.
Muthiyangana Raja Maha Vihara
One of the best things about Sri Lanka is its interesting history. Muthiyangana Raja Maha Vihara is an ancient Buddhist temple about an hour and a half away from Haputale. The temple’s history dates to the time of the Buddha; where it’s believed that the Buddha visited on his third time to the island along with 500 Arahants. It is on this site that one of Sri Lanka’s king built a temple whose stupa enshrines a hair relic and Mukathaka Dathu (sweat droplets which have turned into pearls) from the Buddha.
Tip – Remember to cover your shoulders and knees before entering the sacred temple.
Thangamale Bird Sanctuary
Thangamale Bird Sanctuary is a lesser known nature sanctuary on the island. Nestled in the lush green hills of Haputale, it is a must for any wildlife lover and adventurer. The Thangamale Mountain, located within the sanctuary is draped in evergreen cloud forests, which makes for a picturesque walk. On your stroll, you’ll see some magnificent views of the surrounding mountain ranges such as Pidurangala, Hakgalla and Dambatenne. Approximately 12 species of birds roost here as well: like the Yellow-eared Bulbul, Sri Lankan Parrot, and the Sri Lankan Jungle Fowl. There are many routes to get to Thangamale Sanctuary, but take the one from Adisham Bungalow as that is the most accessible.
Tip – Wear appropriate trekking shoes and comfortable attire.