Ravana Falls

Nestled high in the hill country of Sri Lanka, close to the famous mountain town of Ella, the legendary Ravana Falls is just one of those fabled waterfalls that are deeply intertwined with ancient mythology, historical significance and Mother Nature at her finest. Coupled with some picturesque views of the lush green valleys of the countryside, Ravana Falls is not only a place for sightseeing and taking a dip in its natural pools, but also a haven for the history buff.

Best Known For

  • The falls are best known for being some of the more breathtaking waterfalls hidden in the countryside that lays testament to Sri Lanka’s colossal mountains draped in lush green tea plantations and evergreen forests. Therefore, making it perfect for sightseeing and photography of the verdant valleys of the hill country.
  • Ravana falls is also known for the central role it plays in ancient Sri Lankan and Indian mythology, as it is mentioned in the fabled chronicle of the ‘Ramayana’ (a chronicle that depicts the clash of a King Ravana of Sri Lanka and King Rama of India), making it an important heritage site of the country.
  • Due to its 3 tier cascade, the Ravana Falls is also famed for being a place of Zen, since its natural pools and the evergreen surroundings make it perfect for a little dip in the natural pools and to admire the rustic splendour of the Paradise Island.

Interesting Facts

  • The Ravana Falls actually forms part of the Ravana Ella Wildlife Sanctuary, thus the reason as to why it is untouched by any sort of development and teems with endemic species of flora and fauna.
  • The waterfall is quite a short waterfall, just 82-feet high, however, it currently ranks as one of Sri Lanka’ widest waterfalls.
  • During the wet season of the area, that is experienced at the beginning of the year, the cascade of the falls is believed to resemble an Areca flower with withering petals, making it all the more unique.
  • Of course, the highlight of the falls is the legendary story as told by the epic ‘Ramayana’.
  • According to the epic, the demon King Ravana of Sri Lanka kidnapped Sita, who was Rama’s wife, and imprisoned her at a cave near the falls 5000 years ago.
  • The discovery of the Ravana Falls Cave or Ravana Ella Cave shows evidence that the chronicle can be true, as the cave shows a complex cave system in which habitation was possible.
  • It is believed that Sita was supposed to have bathed in the natural pools created by the waterfall, while the demon king played the Ravanahatha (an ancient bowed, stringed instrument).
  • Some other notable archaeological discoveries found in the cave are the remains of ancient humans, believed to have inhabited the caves more than 25,000 years ago.
  • Due to the falls possessing a 3-tier cascade, natural pools are formed at every tier. It is in the highest tier that you can witness some of the best views of the verdant valleys of the Sri Lankan hill country, thus making it ideal to bask in the splendid view while taking a dip.

Times, Seasons and Tips

  • The legendary waterfall is open throughout the year for people, however, the months from December to January prove to be ideal since the cascade is displayed in all its natural glory, making it all the more special.
  • Please do take care of yourself when attempting to climb the second and third tiers as there are no proper pathways and it is quite dangerous if careless. It is best if you ask the locals to guide you through these treacherous paths.
  • The best time to visit the falls are during the mornings and evenings. Please refrain from visiting at night, since it is very dangerous.
  • Please keep your surroundings clean and do be mindful of your belongings.

All in all, the Ravana Falls is truly is an ancient monument that draws many a traveller looking to witness the breathtaking countryside, along with being a haven for the traveller looking to understand the ancient heritage the country possesses.

Title image by: Jehan Gamalathge

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December - February


Nature and Outdoors

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