Diyatalawa

Diyatalawa is a garrison town in the central highlands of Sri Lanka, in the Badulla District of Uva Province. It is at an altitude of 1,499 m (4,918 ft) and has become a popular destination for local holiday makers. It is home to the Diyatalawa Garrisonof the Sri Lanka Army, which includes the Sri Lanka Military Academy, officer training center of the army; SLAF Diyatalawa, the Sri Lanka Air Force’s ground combat training centre; and facilities of the Sri Lanka Police.

It is not exactly known as to when Diyatalawa became a training station for troops, but available records show that it was selected around 1885, when the British Army first established a garrison at Diyatalawa. At that time training was conducted at the Imperial Camp which is presently occupied by the Gemunu Watch troops.

Fox Hill, Diyatalawa is the venue for the annual Fox Hill Motor Cross organized by the Sri Lanka Military Academy, one of the premier motor racing events in the country.

The Fox Hill (Nariya Kanda in Sinhalese) was so named, after the engraving of the whole slope facing the railway station of Diyatalawa, by the British soldiers at the canteen town, with an image of a fox carved in with hundreds of rough rocks of quartes that were once lying scattered all over the hill. The Stag Hill (Gona Kanda in Sinhalese) too named following the same style of rock art on hill similar to Fox Hill.

Due to the high altitude, garrison town of Diyatalawa located between the hill station retreats of Haputale and Bandarawela of central highlands has a much cooler climate than the lowlands of Sri Lanka, with a mean annual temperature of 16 °C. In the winter months it is quite cold at night, and there can even be frost.

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