Sri Lanka, named “Serendip” by the Arabs, and “Ceylon” by the Portugese, is every part of heaven you wished you traveled to that time you really needed to escape somewhere different, exhilarating, and beautiful. Every colour seems heightened in strange ways; endless junglely-green is everywhere. Mango, palm and pandanus creepers are more jade and emerald than you remember. Bird and monkey chatter doesn’t stop. Green, rolling seas are cleaner and as beautiful as the ones at home.
There’s a covetable Buddhist hangover (Sri Lanka having the longest, continuous history of the religion in the world); fresh out of a 45 year civil war, they have the good sense to make their country (which is 1/4 national park) a destination for discerning, eco-conscious tourists who will pay extra for preservation; dollars from your hotel bill go towards planting new trees in the surrounds of where you stay.
Bundala National Park, on Sri Lanka’s south-east coastline, is less frequented at this stage then its neighbouring national parks Udu Walawa and Yala, and therefore a bit of a well kept secret. Elephants, peacocks, crocodiles, deer and loads of birds including flamingoes (in December) at every turn of the amazing dawn safaris. The elephant orphanage at Udu Walawa juntion is also totally worth checking out to see some juvenile and baby elephants at the milk bar. Feeding times are at 9am, 12pm, 3pm and 6pm.
Here are some of our favourite Sri Lanka things:
1. Sri Lankan people
3. Geoffrey Bawa architecture
4. Colonial architecture
5. Train travel
6. Beautiful furniture from colonial days
7. Fisherman in Weligama
8. Tangalla beach