RCPTA – Three Day Tour to Hambantota, Kataragama, Tissamaharamaya & Nuwara Eliya – 22nd to 24th August 2015

The day dawned on the 22nd of August 2015 when the young at heart but all over sixty years, members of the RCPTA gathered at dawn in front of the Royal College main entrance to embark on the annual three day tour. Chief organizer Mr. H. M. Dayaratne was seen attending to the finer detail and then we started off. For convenience of many, participants were picked up along the route to Kottawa where we entered the southern expressway heading towards Matara. Exiting from from Matara we arrived at Hambantota.The administration Director of the Magampura Harbour Mr. Sarath Perera took all of us to the VIP deck where we could get a full view of the harbour. We arrived at the Peacock Hotel close to lunch time. We checked in, had lunch and had a rest. Around 6.00 pm most of us were ready to go to worship the Kirivehera and the Kataragama Shrine. Back at the hotel we had dinner and went to bed. We are thankful to the owner of the hotel Mrs. Dulani Guruge for providing a comfortable stay for a crowd of over 90 at a reasonable rate.

Checked out of the hotel next morning and we visited Ranminithanne studio, in Hambantota, a movie production facility in the lines of Hollywood. We were able to see the sets of a recent production of a Hindi Movie. Some sets were permanent spread out in a vast area.

Going up towards Palmadulla we stopped by to see the massive Maligawila Buddha statue carved out of granite rock. It was a marvelous sight. We then enjoyed the beautiful scenery going up country. But some of it was lost to us as most of us were exercising our vocal cords.

We arrived in Nuwara Eliya where we were going to stay for the night of the 23rd. It was an experience as in the chilly night we waited for the single bus which was going to take us all in batches to where we were going to spend the night. The Sanasa Cottages in Nuwara Eliya had several cottages spread all over on a hill. Each cottage had two rooms which could accommodate five. Dinner and overnight stay in N’Eliya. In the morning after breakfast we visited the Ambewala milk factory.

sssss Back at the Sanasa restaurant we had lunch and left for Colombo. Tea was served in Kadugannawa and we arrived in Colombo at a reasonable time around 9.00pm on the 24th. We are grateful to the organizers of the tour headed by Mr. H.M.Dayaratne for a tour which was well planned.