A mountainous beauty and a beating cultural heart. Rising 2,243 metres above this lush landscape is the sacred Adam's Peak, which attracts pilgrims who climb its 5,500 steep steps at night.

On a clear day, though, you can enjoy the views in more comfort from Tea Trails, a cluster of four (soon to be five) colonial bungalows among the tea fields and connected by walking trails. The tea - single blend and black -  is still infused in the daily way of life, just as it was in the 19th century when the English planted the terraces. Today you can still see pickers moving through them, plucking the youngest buds.

Dotted around Castlereagh Lake, the bungalows contain a handful of bedrooms - each named after the tea planter who lived there - and are surrounded by gardens where, in the evening, you can hear the chanting from temples across the valley.

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Wake to 'bed tea' brought by your butler, and have your bath run for you. Equally splendid is the other end of the day when drinks are mixed as dusk falls and a delightful dinner is served. Think asparagus soup infused with green tea, followed by lamb with pea purée, a tamarind sauce and lapsang souchong shots. Then a tasty blueberry cheesecake with hibiscus flower tea sauce will appear and make you realise you should have booked a longer stay.

GO: Cox & Kings (www.coxandkings.co.uk) offers seven days in Sri Lanka from £2,355 per person, including two nights at Tea Trails, all-inclusive. Includes flights and transfers.

WOW FACTOR: Pick Norwood Bungalow for handsome views of the eastern end of the Bogawantalawa Valley.

FLIGHT TIME: 10 hours, 30 minutes

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