Seetha Amman Kovil
If you’re familiar with the Ramayana (the world’s largest ancient piece of classical literature), you’ll be familiar with Seetha, King Ravana and Rama. What do these characters have to do with Sri Lanka? According to the story, about 5,000 years ago, Seetha was held captive by King Ravana here, and Rama had to rescue her. And so, the Seetha Amman Kovil, commemorating Seetha, was built there. Widely referred to as the ‘only Seetha temple in the world’ (though there are a couple of others outside of Sri Lanka), the kovil is located about 5 km from Nuwara Eliya. Surrounded by the countryside and settled beside a gentle stream, the Seetha Amman Kovil holds quite a bit of significance for the locals, with many Hindus making their way to the kovil to perform poojas after marriage.
The village where the kovil is located is known as ‘Seetha Eliya’, and is covered in plenty of forest, providing a beautiful backdrop to the colourful kovil that sits besides it. The kovil is breathtakingly beautiful, with tones of orange, blue and cold making the vibrant complex stand out even from a distance.
The kovil’s pooja timings are usually between 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. Neighbouring the kovil is another temple, dedicated to the monkey god, Hanuman, who was a large part of the efforts in retrieving Seetha from where she was imprisoned. So, if you’re curious, you could also visit the adjacent kovil!