Bambarakanda Falls is the highest waterfall in our country. It is 241 metres and it ranks 48th among the 100 highest waterfalls in the world. It is formed by the Uduweriya Haputale mountains' Kuda Oya, a tributary of the Walawe River .
Situated in the Badulla district, where there are 33 waterfalls, Bambarakanda falls within the Haldummulla Provincial Council area. It is on the Colombo-Badulla highway and is 18 km away from Belihuloya, where the popular rest house is. It is 27 km from Koslanda and is also quite close to the World's End, one of Sri Lanka 's major natural tourist attractions. The approach to Bambarakanda is not difficult.
Second in the list is Kurunduoya Falls with a height of 189 meters. Thus we see a difference of 52m between the first and the second. It ranks as the 58th in the list of highest world waterfalls. It is one of 75 waterfalls in the Nuwara Eliya district.
Also called the Maturata Fall, its source is the Kurundu river from where the water cascades down into a deep ravine before joining the Mahaweli Ganga. On the road from Nuwara Eliya to Kandapola, it is situated in the hill country.
Diyaluma , the third highest waterfall in Sri Lanka , is one of the most popular mainly because of its easy accessibility. The 114 metres high waterfall is in the Ratnapura district which boasts of 109 waterfalls - the most in the country. Situated on the Koslanda-Wellawaya road, it is just six kilometers away from Koslanda and 13 km from Wellawaya.
Situated in the Badulla district, where there are 33 waterfalls, Bambarakanda falls within the Haldummulla Provincial Council area. It is on the Colombo-Badulla highway and is 18km away from Belihuloya, where the popular rest house is. It is 27 km from Koslanda and is also quite close to the World's End, one of Sri Lanka 's major natural tourist attractions. The approach to Bambarakanda is not difficult.
Situated in the Badulla district, where there are 33 waterfalls, Bambarakanda falls within the Haldummulla Provincial. Diyaluma ranks 62nd in the list of highest waterfalls in the world. It offers a spectacular sight during the rainy season.
Among the legends related to Diyaluma is one about a king who had fallen in love with a young woman belonging to a lower caste. The king's subjects were angry about it and the couple decided to flee. Arriving at the site of the fall, they began climbing. The king made it to the top but the creeper the woman was hanging onto became entangled in rocks and she plunged to her death. It is said that the tears shed by the king in his grief were collected by a deity and turned into the fall as it stands today.
Mapalana in the Ratnapura district is the fourth highest. It is 114m high and is in three sections. It is served by Ella Oya. According to the villagers, the fall has been named after a nobleman who came to bathe there.
Located in the Samanala Kanda, it is 22 km from Ratnapura at a village called Kondagala. The water gushes down so heavily during the rainy season that the loud noise can be heard as far as six kilometers away.
The fifth in the list is Laksapana Fall in the Nuwara Eliya district and is 129m in height. Considered one of the very popular waterfalls, many believe that it has got its name from the presence of iron ore (laksha) in the rocks over which the water flows. The Laksapana reservoir, where the fall is found, is used by power stations at New Laksapana, Canyon and Polpitye Samanala, resulting in a certain amount of water depletion.
The most convenient route to get to the Laksapana fall is the Hatton-Maskeliya road. Falling within the Ambagamuwa Korale, one has to pass the Pathana village to reach it. Ginigathena is the closest town.
Kirindi Falls in the Ratnapura district is 116m tall. The source of this breath-taking, 116m-high fall is the Kirindi Ela (stream), which flows from its starting point 940m up the Kuttapitiya mountain. The stream travels 13km before the cascading point in the Kaluwaramukalana Jungle. It then flows via the Denawaka River to the Kaluganga, located in the Bambarakotuwa Jungle. Local villagers say that there is a picture of a tortoise etched into stone here.
At the base of the fall, the water plunges into a deep pool called Diyagathwala. A popular story is that a flight of stone steps leads down to the bottom, where a treasure trove is hidden. But this may only be a myth since although the water completely dries up during times of drought, there have been no reports of a treasure being found here.
In the wooded area surrounding the fall, there is a multitude of plant species together with wildlife including wild boar, cobra, monkeys and reptiles. This area was previously known as 'Kustapitiya', meaning itch, as folklore has it that a king suffering from an itch had lived here. While villagers believe that sometimes human voices can be heard near the fall, they also say that fireballs can be seen in the skies above the fall at night. The nearest town to Kirindi Falls is Pelmadulla. The fall can be easily reached through the Ratnapura-Pelmadulla road turning left before the Kuttapitiya junction and proceeding for about five kilometers.