Perhaps best known as the location of filming for the 1957 academy award-winning film Bridge on the River Kwai, Kitulgala is an adventurer’s playground. It is a stop-off west of the Kandy-Nuwara Eliya road, with approximately 60km from Kandy to Kitulgala. Thick jungles, tea estates, rubber plantations, hills, and mountains span the landscape. A few kilometers upstream Kelani River here is Sri Lanka’s top white water rafting base. The area also has picturesque waterfalls offering arresting sights. If jungle trekking is your thing, the untouched forest cover provides the perfect setting with its myriads of animal species and endemic plants. A Kitulgala adventure day trip also takes you to thousands of years of history.
White Water Rafting
Kitulgala water rafting covers 5major rapids and 4minor rapids in a 5km stretch of the Kelani River. Conditions are also ideal for flat-water rafting.
Makandawa Forest Reserve
It is the catchment of the Kelani River and one of the most pristine rain forests in Sri Lanka. After Sinharaja, it has the most lowland endemic bird species.
These caves are an archeological site, where the remains of Homosapiens Balangodensis, a 12,000-year old prehistoric man, were discovered.
This 98m high waterfall is situated nearby Laxapana Falls. The base pool offers a stunning vantage point for admiring the falls and its rocky outcrop.
This 126m waterfall lights up Sri Lanka literally, with its twin hydroelectric power stations. Its deep base pool and the misty splash of water are a sight.
Olu Ella Falls
It is one of the less-known and visited waterfalls and takes its name from the Olu flower-like cascade. It falls in 4 segments from a height of 127m.