Renowned for its scenic waterfalls and natural wonders, Belihuloya is a little-known village in the heart of Sri Lanka’s mountainous south. It is perched on a hill at the southern end of Horton Plains National Park, a spectacular region that’s home to a rich biodiversity and the breathtakingly dramatic cliff of World’s End.
Things to do in Belihuloya
Spend your days hopping between the picturesque cascades that surround Belihuloya, including the 263-metre-high Bambarakanda Ella waterfall. In addition to being the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka, it’s also a popular destination for rock climbers and rappellers looking to tackle its sheer cliff face. Also nearby is the 60-metre-high Surathali Ella, which flows over an angular-shaped rock from the pristine forests of Horton Plains.
While not nearly as high, Pahanthuda Ella waterfall is no less impressive, cascading into a turquoise pool that resembles the shape of an oil lamp. On the other side of Belihuloya is the six-metre-high Brampton Falls, which forms part of the Weli Oya river as it descends the slopes of Mount Papulagala through a lush monsoon forest.
Continue driving east and you’ll arrive at the Adisham Bungalow, a 1930s English country house that houses the Adisham Monastery of Saint Benedict. Admire its Tudor and Jacobean architecture while learning about the prominent colonial figures who once visited the estate, with its interior beautifully preserved and decorated with period furnishings.
Getting around Belihuloya
Belihuloya is around 1.5 hours’ drive from Ratnapura and just under four hours from the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, and the country’s main gateway, Bandaranaike International Airport. Buses are the main means of getting around the region while the village centre is compact enough to explore on foot.