We thanked our lucky stars for ending yesterday’s journey at Melsiripura. The early morning ride was full of hills and if we took on these hills yesterday we would have completely given up. We only had around 50 km to go.
We came across a place where the slope was so high that it was much better to push the bike and walk. I must say the slope from that point down was the best! You can go down the slope without pedaling for 3 km!
We passed the famous Rangiri Dambulla cricket stadium and stopped near a house to hydrate ourselves. If you see a garden tap and if you’re thirsty, it’s always good to take a break.
The Sigiriya Rock is located in the heart of the Sigiriya village. The roads are shady and cool compared to the main road. I noticed here that it’s sort of a thing where tourists are taken on tours to experience the Sri Lankan village life. I think a bike ride can do more than that.
This part of the country is very dry and you barely get any rain. Thanks to the Kings those days, the tanks that were built ensured there was water to do agriculture. The forest nearby was also kept unharmed to make sure the water didn’t dry out fast. One sad thing that I noticed is that, modern agricultural methods which use a lot of pesticides have contaminated the only source of water for these people. So here you find places selling water. There argument is, it’s cheaper to buy water rather than allowing the crops to die. Well there’s a limit to everything, and those options will surely run out.
As you cycle through the village, when you pass a bend, you can see the rock from far. What usually happens is, people would park their vehicles somewhere far away and start walking through the foot path towards the main entrance of the rock. If you came in a cycle, you don’t have that problem. You can cycle through the footpath.
It was 11AM by the time we started climbing and the sun was at its peak. Cycling all the way to Sigiriya and climbing steps didn’t make the experience any sweeter, but it would be a story worth telling everyone right?
After climbing the rock, we went to Habarana for lunch. We took the forest road which gave us a sense of peace and quietness. The cycle doesn’t make any sound so you will find animals coming on to the side of the road. I saw a herd of deer roaming on the side of the road.
The day ended with a relaxing bath in the village well and us getting a bus to go to Colombo.
The story of us getting the bikes on to the train can be read from here.
Here are the video clips that we made to give you an immersive experience: