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Ussangoda- unique and steeped in history

Ussangoda , Sri Lanka’s 21st and newest National park with its unusual landscape, vegetation and history lies in deep southern Sri Lanka and close to Yala, the Southern National Park famed for leopard, elephant and bears. If it is a Yala National Park hotel you need then the Saraii Village Weerawila would be an ideal choice. Its environment friendly accommodation, quality service and cuisine is worth experiencing and is within easy reach of wildlife reserves and archaeological sites.

Ussangoda is a plateau and its geology, landscape and vegetation contrasts starkly with the exotic, tropical jungle surrounding it. The soil is reddish in colour and pygmy forests, short grass , moss etc., thrive on this soil and thus, Ussangoda has a beauty of its own , the reddish soil bringing to mind planet Mars. The plant Vishnukranthi (Evolvulus Alsinoides) proliferates here, the tiny purple flowers adding to the beauty of the landscape.

Several species of small, wild animals inhabit Ussangoda.

It is believed that Ussangoda was hit by a meteorite way back in time and this may be the reason for the reddish soil and the minerals in it. In the areas near the sea, the soil is composed of several layers with different colourization.

Ussangoda offers a panoramic view of the Indian Ocean and pristine beaches with cliffs sloping down to the beach. The beach is a nesting site for sea turtles as is adjoining Rekawa . The neighbouring ‘Kalametiya Sanctuary ‘ is a bird watcher’s paradise.

Ussangoda is an archaeological site for it is linked to Sri Lanka’s history from the beginning. It lies near ‘Miniha Gal Kanda’ , Yala where evidence of pre-historic man has been found. Ravana, legendary Demon King of Sri Lanka is believed to have used Ussangoda as the airport for his wooden aircraft, the ‘Dandu Monara’. Another belief is that Ussangoda is the domain of the demi god ‘Mangara’.

For picnics, sea bathing, archaeological explorations, bird watching or for a break from a long journey Ussangoda is ideal in every way.

Thanuja Silva is a travel writer who writes under the pen name Auburn Silver. She has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.

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