With a rich history and a diverse culture, Sri Lanka is an endlessly fascinating and beautiful country. If you’re planning on going to Sri Lanka, these are the things that you shouldn’t miss out on.
- Take the Train to Ella
Get on at Kandy and experience the Sri Lankan countryside in a way like no other. An intimate way to get to know Sri Lanka, you can see the green tea plantations, rolling hills, mountain tunnels and pine forests as you slowly make your way to Ella.
This train takes 6-7 hours and departs from Kandy to Ella twice a day.
- West Coast Surfing
If you’ve never tried surfing before, then Sri Lanka’s south west coast is the place to do it. The waves are not huge, and the break is sandy to cushion your fall. If you’re an expert surfer, then there’s a beach for you too, with bigger and better waves.
- Go on a Pilgrimage
Time it right and you may have the opportunity to go on a pilgrimage. Adam’s Peak is where Adam (as in the first man created by god) first set foot on earth after being cast out from heaven. It is also known as Sri Pada, where Buddha left his last footprint as he walked towards paradise, and Samanalakande, where butterflies go to die. Some also believe that the huge ‘footprint’ at the top of the peak was left by St Thomas, the early apostle of India. Whichever story you believe, this place has been a place of pilgrimage for over 1,000 years. Pilgrimage season begins in December and runs until May, with the busiest period being January and February. You do need to be physically fit for the climb, but it isn’t particularly trying.
- Visit Yala’s National Park
An incredible park filled with wildlife, you can see elephants, peacocks, monkeys, leopards and much, much more. The prices are reasonable and the chances of seeing an animal that you’ve always wanted to see are so high, that it’s definitely a must see if you’re in the country.
- Take in Colombo
Sri Lanka’s capital city, Colombo has lots to offer. It is a city with an exciting future and a rich past; combining bustling markets, gardens and grand and humble buildings next to the sea. Check out Fort, the business district for some great department stores, Pettah for a colourful bazaar, and the Cinnamon Gardens for a peak into the way the other half live.