It was the most tiring trip I had in years. The travel was really physically abusive, from a 4 hour flight from Sharjah International Airport to Colombo, and non-stop travel by land. Arrived at the airport 6AM then started the trip by heading the north-east of Colombo to reach Dambulla, situated in the central province of Sri Lanka (approx 150kms) and reached around 2PM. The challenge was most of the roads are under repair so motorists have to drive one at a time. And since we had only 3 full days to explore Sri Lanka, every hour mattered.
Sri Lanka is blessed with its nature and wildlife sanctuaries. People respect the animals living around them. It was my first time to see squirrels jumping on the trees! Had our first elephant ride which goes around the lake minding that there could be gators appear in front of us! The rivers are fresh and people go for swim or even to take their daily bath. If you are into nature (like me), surely you will appreciate this country. What I didn’t like was that in every move, I had to pull out cash for tips, though I did not care as I know, I’m helping people to live. Sri Lanka is a 3rd world country and tourism is one way for them to survive.
In all, Sri Lanka is beautiful given with its beautiful nature and rich histories. A beautiful escape away from the desert.
What to expect:
- Cheap prices
- Long land travels (depends on which area you plan to go)
- Virgin natures and wild animals on the road
- Good food! (Yeah, what I enjoyed most)
- Tips, tips and tips!
What to see:
- Golden Temple (LKR3,000) + Tips
- Dambulla Wildlife Sanctuary (LKR5,000) + Tips
- Caves (included in golden temple)
- Sigiriya Rock Formation (Recommended) (LKR5,000)
- Herbal Medicines Plantations (Free) + Tips
- Hindi Temples (Free)
- Sri Lanka Cultural Dance Show (LKR3,000) + Tips
- Temple of the Sacred Tooth
Nuwara Eliya District
- Tea Plantation (Recommended) (Free) + Tips
- Tea Green Fields
- Bomburu Ella Waterfalls (LKR50)
- Nuwara Eliya Lake (Recommended) (LKR1000)
Things to remember:
- No trains
- Buses are available (open air)
- Taxis are Tuktuk
- Better to have small bills as you will need it often (tips)
- I always mention tips because people bluntly ask for it (give it to them, that’s what makes them eat)
- Amaya Lake Resort Dambulla (5 stars $200/night) – Since travelling around Sri Lanka is tiring, you would only want to take some good relaxation with nice views and good food. This hotel serves good food, one of the best buffets I had. ;)
- Amaya Hills Kandy (5 stars $200/night)
- Otherwise you can check cheaper hotels in Sri Lanka.
- Tour: (Depends where and what you’re up to)
- Rent a van to roam around easily ($50/day)
- Ivan: +94776145061 – He’s really a nice man. :)