Holidays to Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka

Some 2,000 metres above sea level and set within the hillside, the city of Nuwara Eliya is one of Sri Lanka's most prominent hill resorts and is at the heart of the tea country. It was once, however, a hill country retreat for British colonials to indulge in hunting, polo, and cricket.

Nicknamed ‘Little England’, Nuwara Eliya has a distinctly British feel with natural rolling green hills providing the backdrop for a number of old colonial British buildings. The Queen’s Cottage was built during the late 19th century as an English country house for the British Governor of Ceylon at which to spend his vacations. While it remains classically English in appearance, it is today used by the President of Sri Lanka as his country residence. The Grand Hotel is another distinctive building – this luxury hotel was built in the style of an Elizabethan-era manor house and was also originally intended as a holiday residence for the Governor of Ceylon. Hill Club was a British Gentleman’s Club that looks like a building straight out of the Surrey countryside, and there’s even a Tudor-style post office. 

Shri Bhakta Hanuman Temple is an incredible place to visit, with breath-taking views of the nearby rivers and mountains that make the short, but steep climb to the top so worth it. The temple boasts Sri Lanka’s tallest Hanuman statue standing at 18ft tall and carved perfectly out of black granite. 

Nuwara Eliya is one of the most important locations for tea production in the country. There are tea gardens in all directions around the town, and visiting a plantation to try or buy authentic tea made at the source is a must. The fresh, green landscape also makes it the perfect place to grow plants and flowers, and the spectacular landscaped Hakgala Botanical Gardens displays roses and tree ferns.

There are a number of waterfalls around the town, some of which you can stop by for a quick visit and others requiring a bit more of a trek to reach. Due to the cooler air temperatures here, the water can be icy cold, so be sure to test it first if you feel like going in for a dip!


  • Recognise the British influence as you see Tudor and Elizabethan style buildings throughout the town

  • Visit a tea plantation and try a freshly brewed cup at the very place it’s made

  • Trek to one of the beautiful waterfalls that are dotted around the city

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There is just something so very special about, not only the incredible beauty of Sri Lanka, but the warmth of its people. Every visit leaves me wanting more, and Sri Lanka’s tea plantations, boutique hotels and stunning beaches are never far from my mind.

Nuwara Eliya trip ideas

Here are some trip ideas to Nuwara Eliya. All of our trip ideas shown below are examples, and we’ll amend, adapt or start from scratch, until we’ve created the perfect trip for you. See one you like, or have a trip in mind? Call us now to book: 020 3510 5777

Things to do in Nuwara Eliya

Here are some of the things you can do in Nuwara Eliya. When you've chosen your favourite experiences, just give our Travel Designers a call and they'll put a trip together for you. If you need help choosing an experience, or if you want to learn more about it, our Travel Designers will be more than happy to talk to you. Just call them on: 020 3510 5777

Map of Nuwara Eliya

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