When two tuk tuks approached us, luck seemed to be at our side after all. We waved them down and asked if they knew a place where we would be able to spend the night. They said they knew a place and we got our hopes up that we didn't have to survive the night somewhere in the jungle. We arrived at a homestay, where the mattresses lay on the ground, but where the atmosphere seemed good. Old tools were dangling at the wall for decoration. Again the price was too high, but as it was dark in the meantime we had no other choice. Hungry and tired we agreed on the price. After a nice rice and curry and a movie in our own home cinema, we went to sleep in our cozy little nest, hoping for a better day.
It seemed to be idle hope, as the next days didn't get so much better. Our host kept looking at us with a rather angry glance, at least that's how we felt. We never had the feeling that we were really welcome. Maybe they just aren't used to foreigners yet?! Although, for our third night the room was apparently booked by a group of Germans. Result: we had to spend our last night in a tent on one of their camping grounds. Camping in Sri Lanka, that's another check on our to-do list. When thinking about Knuckels we could see ourselves doing some nice hikes, but we didn't make it further then a couple of waterfalls. To undertake this on your own it was practically impossible and the guide we had for one day only knew one hiking path. Furthermore, this man told us that we didn't really made it to the Knuckles range, as this was behind the mountain tops that we could see. To make our fun packed adventure complete, we even had to wake up at 4 in the morning, as the only mini van that could take us back to civilization would leave at 5h.30. The catering was rather late that evening: at 10h.30 in the evening we received our dinner. This meant that it would be a very short night for us. Punctually at 4am our alarm clock rang and we started our walk from the camping ground to the van. We had to cross a river in the dark with only a head torch. Luckily we were quite good in rock hopping, although not all kept it dry. After a couple of hours on the bus, our unexpected adventure ended in Kandy.
Maybe we should have followed the advice of the Lonely Planet after all... They mention that this non-touristic region is difficult to reach and a knowledgeable guide is virtually essential. Oh well, it's a new experience and between all the misery, we did have some fun moments. A lesson learned, I guess.