Hakgala Botanic Gardens
This garden was established in 1861 for the purpose of experimentation and promotion of Cinchona cultivation in Sri Lanka and subsequently Tea cultivation. Today it stands as a fine masterpiece of natural landscape with many features providing educational opportunities, especially on hill country landscape gardening, floriculture and montane flora.
This garden of 28 ha lies at an elevation of about 1745 meters above sea level, in several terraces upon the lower slopes of the Hakgala Rock (elephants jaw rock), covered by the Hakgala strict nature reserve in the Nuwara Eliya district. The massive Hakgala rock towers to a height of about 2200 m behind the gardens and surrounding the forest reserve like a solitary giant. Adorned by the surrounding forest the garden faces the Uva valley and the mountain ranges of Madulsima and Namunukula in the distant landscape.
The best time to visit the garden is during the festive season at Nuwara Eliya from April trailing off to August when the gardens also put up their best display of temperate annual flowers, Roses and Foliage. Although not many flowers are seen during October to December one can enjoy the serenity of subtropical mist covered woodland flora with other vegetations.
This picturesque garden has a cool, fresh climate somewhat similar to an alpine atmosphere. The flora of the garden is distinctly subtropical and consisting of indigenous montane vegetation intermingled with introduced subtropical flora from various countries and includes about 1000 plant species. The area receives rainfall through the southwest monsoon from May to August when gusts of strong winds blow across the garden and the North East monsoon from October to December. During this period thick mist envelopes the garden with frequent, heavy rains during the afternoon and evenings.
Hakgala Botanical Garden
Hakgala – Sri Lanka