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Legends swirl around the mountain of Ritigala, which towers like a pile of huge, sculptural granite blocks over the surrounding jungle, and whose low peak is often shrouded in mist. It is said that Ritigala won a dual against his fellow-giant, Sona - and that the mountain was the place from which Hanuman leapt across the sea to South India in the great Hindu epic, the Ramayana.

Certainly sometime after the first century BC it became a hermitage for the Pansakulika monks; its remote position and numerous caves made a perfect refuge. Today Ritigala is still remote, usually free of tourists and always cool. It is mystically beautiful, with shady forests and streams feeding quiet pools, granite boulders and the old stone monastic paths winding their way between the ruins of meditation platforms, Ayurvedic "hospitals" and shrines, and the roots of huge, sinewy trees.

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The first condition of understanding a foreign country is to smell it.
Rudyard Kipling

Ampersand’s preparation, attention to detail and interaction before and during our trip show exactly why good travel agents have a role in today’s internet booking age. They were a delight to deal with!
- Mr David Wallace, North India
Difficult to articulate just how good the service from you and your team really was. We know you will continue to do well and hope we have the chance to seek your assistance again before long.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
- Jaime Benitez, South India
Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
- Leslie Siben, India
I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India

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