05 Feb - 08 Feb 2011 Wellawaya

Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
Comfortable and clean double room (with private Asian shower/toilet) for only LKR 1,320.- or US$ 11.90 per night. Very friendly and professional management/staff.

Click below for an interactive road map of the family-run Little Rose Inn in Wellawaya, which we would highly recommend, and for directions

Meeting up with stony-faced Maitreya, the future Buddha, and with six other up to 16-m tall rock-cut Buddha figures, some of the largest ones in Sri Lanka, all from the 10th century CE and carved in low relief into the face of a rock outcrop at the archaeological site of Buduruwagala (compulsory donation: LKR 200.- or US$ 1.80 per foreigner), located in a patch of unspoilt dry-zone forest and populated by beautiful butterflies and an abundance of interesting large birds (stork-billed kingfisher [Pelagopsis capensis], spot-billed pelican [Pelicanus philippensis], Indian peafowl [Pavo cristatus]), just a few clicks south of Wellawaya.
“Buddha also said that the dharma, like a bird, needs two wings to fly, and that the wing that balances wisdom is compassion.”

Taking an S.L.T.B. bus (Sri Lanka Transport Board) for LKR 70.- or US$ 0.65 per person from Wellawaya via the nice enough Ravana Ella Falls and the steep Ella Gap through Sri Lanka's scenic hill country along well-tended tea plantations straight to Badulla, thus bypassing the overpriced and boring tourist trap of Ella, a scatter of cheap guesthouses which are mostly only a front for their expensive food and beverages, with a few ayurvedic healers, meditation centres and trekking tours thrown in for good measure.

Click below for more blog posts about interesting Buddha statues

Click below for a summary of this year's travels
2011 Map Konni & Matt

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Facing Sri Lanka
© Konni & Matt

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