Seethawaka River Expedition

Our Seethawaka River Adventure removes students from the relative comfort of our tented camp at Kithulgala and onto the Seethawaka River, located near Avisawella, between Colombo and Ratnapura. This expedition is restricted to the lower section of the river which is a flat water section of the river. Students participate in many team building activities including abseiling, river crossings, rafting and kayaking and workshops on river navigation. Students arrive early and are met by our guides for a “high ropes” river crossing to our rafts and setting up camp for the night. The next days there will be rafting, kayaking and abseil off a high bridge, as well as participating in group challenges to help build personal and group responsibility and motivation, communication skills and and developing leadership with problem solving challenges. Through our Seethawaka Expedition, students learn the basics of wilderness camping: Under our guidance, students are responsible for setting up camp, cooking all meals, general camp chores such as washing up, cleaning, camp maintenance, fire making and camp clearance. The Seethawaka is an excellent place for students to gain teamwork and leadership experience, and is a great next step for those who may have already participated in our programs at Borderlands in Kithulgala.

    • Location: Seethawaka River at Avisawella
    • Duration: 2 nights/3 days
    • Ages: 15+ (Grade 9+)
  • We individually tailor each of our school programs to match our client’s needs. Therefore, we can only do pricing on request.
    1. Guides who are trained in CPR and First Aid
    2. First Aid Kit
    3. International Standard Safety Equipment
    4. GPS and Mobile Phone in case of emergencies
    5. All necessary gear for Kayaking, Rafting, Abseiling, etc.
    6. All meals and drinks including a special BBQ dinner
    7. All camping equipment
    8. All other necessary equipment
    • High ropes river crossing
    • Abseiling
    • Wilderness Camping
    • Team Building Games
    • Flat Water Rafting
    • Flat Water Kayaking


Mahaweli River Expedition

This expedition is a variant of our famous Mahaweli River Expedition and is designed to build on the skills students may have gained on the Seethawaka Expedition. The 335km long Mahaweli is Sri Lanka’s longest river. This wilderness adventure, journeyed by kayaks and canoes, is a 50km, 3 night and 4 day kayaking trip through the gorgeous Wasgamuwa National Park, located in the heart of Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle. It begins 20km downstream from the town of Mahiyangana and ends at Manampitiya. The park is home to large herds of wild elephants and a rich and diverse birdlife. It’s quite likely that you’ll spot some crocs sunning themselves on the banks of the river on certain stretches, so the trip is not for the faint hearted!

This trip will offer participants a chance to learn many new skills such as how to read the river, wilderness whitewater paddling, map and compass reading and wilderness safety. Borderlands also aims to foster a greater sense of environmental and self awareness. Students will prepare their own meals, collect firewood, look out for elephants and river conditions, clean and pack up the camp each day. Students will participate in a workshop on the environmental effects of sand mining which is a problem the local ecosystem faces, and the economics pressures for fishermen farmers to enter the sand mining business. We emphasize team building, as one of our activities is to join kayaks together to form a flotilla!

This is generally a flat water expedition however there are a few class I and II rapids to navigate which will add to the day’s excitement. Borderlands is the only adventure outfitter in Sri Lanka that conducts the Mahaweli River Expedition The journey is an epic and unique experience in which students will come away having learned to be more self-proficient and self-aware.

ITINERARY

  • Day 1

    The trip starts about 30 minutes downstream from Mahiyanganaya at the Japanese Friendship Bridge at midday. The first day is an intro to the river, safety brief, short paddle, camp and BBQ. The drive from Colombo to Mahiyanganaya is around 5 hours.
  • Day 2

    Second morning we set off and travel past local sandmining, camping just on the edge of Wasgamuwa National Park. There is one Grade II rapid to tackle before we set up camp.
  • Day 3

    The best day in that we paddle with the Wasgamuwa National Park on the left, and the buffer zone on the right, so it’s rare to see people and the silence is wonderful. If we’re lucky we see some good birdlife (some raptors, peacocks) crocs and if very lucky some elephants on the periphery of the park.
  • Day 4

    The last day’s paddle and usually a short day, reaching the final destination of Manampitiya. Head back to Colombo.

    • Duration: 3 nights/4 days
    • Location: Mahaweli River (From Mahiyangana to Manampitiya)
    • Length: 50km
    • Ages: 15+ (Grade 9+)
  • We individually tailor each of our school programs to match our client’s needs. Therefore, we can only do pricing on request.
    1. Experienced river guides who are trained in swift river rescue and certified in CPR and First Aid
    2. First Aid Kit
    3. International Standard Safety Equipment
    4. GPS and mobile phone in case of emergencies
    5. Support Gear
    6. Raft
    7. Kayaks and/or Canoes, gear
    8. All camping gear
    9. All meals and drinks
    10. All other necessary equipment