Sri Lanka whitewater rafting was one of our must-do adventures when we got to the island! Kitulgala was the place to do it, the river flowing down from the mountains of Adam’s Peak all the way to Colombo. We found the company Kitulgala Adventures, who had really good ratings and also a nice place to stay. After a little windy road, nausea-inducing bus riding from the mountains to the east, we found Kitulgala Adventures’ camp and soon were hiking through the jungle to the room where we would spend the night before our rafting trip.
The room was HUGE, with a nice balcony overlooking the river. Some white buffalo were grazing in the grass across the water. We ran around and made a silly video, which you’ll see below.
Everyone at Kitulgala Adventures was extremely friendly and helpful. They made a special vegetarian dinner for us that was delicious, then we went to bed early among the jungle sounds. It was a great sleep and we woke super refreshed.
After a yummy breakfast we walked back up to the main road where we boarded a small truck with our raft and our guide. We were told how Sri Lanka whitewater rafting would soon, unfortunately, be a thing of the past. A massive hydro-electric plant is being built up the river, and all of the water which forms the rapids will be diverted in 2020 to create power. All of the rafting companies will be put out of business, the guides willbe forced to find other work, and the river eco-system will be destroyed. But hey, at least there will be power.
We were to raft the middle section of the river, the upper being declared “too dangerous” by the government. After hiking down to the river, our guide followed with the boat and gave us a quick lesson. We had whitewater rafted a few times before, but you know, safety first.
Finally in the water, we were pumped to be whitewater rafting in Sri Lanka. The route took us through four small rapids and three big rapids, with a lot of good scenery along the way. The water was a little lower than our guide would have liked, but a few of the runs were pretty thrilling and we had a great time.
At the end there was a nice peaceful section where we swam for a ways. We got out when we saw a big monitor lizard in the water near us! They only eat “garbage and dead bodies” as our guide explained but they are still scary to us.
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