The word Chariot Path means a lane in which an airplane is taken off. The chronicles mention that this path was initially built to use for the “Dandu Monaraya” of King Rawana; as per the things we got to know from some friends who went in the path earlier. This has led to the name given as Chariot path which is situated closer to Piduruthulagala mountain range in Pussellawa.
The ancient information reveals that this is a routine in which King Rawana took his Queen Seetha from the Seetha Kotuwa in Gurulupotha – Hasalaka to Hakgala Botanical Gardens area. The journey had been a romantic tour for which he took the Queen to show the elegance and grace of his kingdom. Due to these tours, even to date this path is an unfertile land which consists of heavy grass.
For a person who comes from Colombo, the easiest path will be to reach Pussellawa in a Colombo – Nuwaraeliya bus. We started our journey from Colombo around 5 in the morning and came to Pussellawa at around 10.30 in the morning. We bought all the needed food and other requirements from Pussellawa as this is the final town to be found in the route.
From there, we took the Perettasi bus and travelled for the next stop for around 12km which is Perettasi. It took nearly 1 and half hours to reach Perettasi as the road is not that much good for travelling. One of the key things to be noted about this route is that, there is no bus service after 3 o’clock in the evening and there is no bus service at all on Poya days. Moreover, it provides a breathtaking view of the Kotmale dam and the reservoir in the right side of the journey.
At around 2.30 in the noon we reached the Perettasi village and inquired for some more information from the villagers. After that, we started journey with their guidance and came to an old Dutch building in the initial section of the route. From there, the journey was gone amid a number of tea estates and from the right side, we were able to see our destination mountain range. Within a very few distance travel, we were able to come to the exact path which will take us to our journey's end. It took us around one and half hours to come to the Chariot Path at which the time was 4.30 in the evening. The GPS technology was an immense support for this tour as it clearly indicated all the routes which are to be taken and the information gathered from the villagers were not sufficient to pass the number of branches and junctions amid the way. Therefore, it is advised to use the shown zig zag shaped path in the image to avoid any miss-routes. We were able to see many signs of wild bores who lived in this area on our way to the end point.
One of the breathtaking views we came across in our tour is the way how the two-foot high plants and the grassy lands across the path for a long way ahead. This was really a path created for the travel of an airplane and the path ended its destination from a nearby sloppy area of the mountain range. Not only that, the mild sizzle weather and the mist which covers the entire environment within seconds made us mesmerize over this place more and more. Another chronicle related to this area was that the small pond which we used to take water for usage was created from the sad tears of Queen Seetha. Living in such an amazing place while remembering all the historical stories, we prepared our dinner, made the tents and went to sleep as the mist covered the entire area in collaboration with the darkness.
Next day, we were able to see the incredible view of sun rise from our camp site. Bur this was limited to a very few seconds as the mist was the King of nature in this part of the Sri Lankan earth. Then we had our breakfast and started our second day journey to reach Hewaheta area which is also said to be in the path of Loolkandura. Amid the way, we came across several water paths and they were miracle workers to rest and remove our thirst. Once we travelled further, we passed an abandoned tea estate and faced the most unexpected occurrence in the journey as well as in our lives. We were attacked by an army of bees which made us run for our lives to a nearby village and then to the Muloya National Hospital with the assistance of villagers to get medicine for our wounds of bee stings. The hospitality given to us and the caring nature of the villagers at this unexpected event is kindly remembered and cherished to date as we were well taken care of by them. Then we took the bus to come to Hewaheta and then to Colombo straightaway.
The wonderful journey ended this way with loads of memories and also amazing stories to share with others one-day. The trip to Chariot path is a travel of two days with a one night stand at the camping site. Even though we got to know that there are leopards living in the area, luckily or unluckily we did not come across any. I hope this article will be some assistance to anyone who wish to travel the amazing Chariot path in the future.
Translated from Sinhla medium blog post written by Isuru Laknath