The trip to Sri Lanka has been a cultural and historical adventure for me. The whole itinerary was packed as we tried to do as many things as we could while we were there. The trip was divided into three sections: Pre-wedding tour, the wedding and post-wedding tour.
For the pre-wedding tour we did a road trip from Colombo to Sinharaja Forest Reserve and Yala National Park. The rainforest trek was very tiring and challenging. For the first time in my life a leech bit me, and the wound was still bleeding the next day. They did get into our shoes even though we had applied many different kinds of cream to get rid of them. However, it was totally worth it for the people who really like exploring nature and don’t mind trekking. They would enjoy the trip. For me, I would say I’m a “Safarier” rather than a “Rainforester.” A safari was what I was really longing for in the tour. I had only experienced a safari once before, that was in Australia two years back, though really it was an open range zoo so I guess I can’t call it a “safari.” However, it was at that time I started dabbling in safaris’ and immediately fell in love with them. I will always hope that in my life I will have the chance to work in the wild with the animals and my camera. Am I too wild?
Negombo is one of the best places for weddings, according to my Sri Lankan friend, and of course that was where the wedding was located. Negombo is very near the international airport, just 10 kilometers down the road, and it offers nice beaches and resorts, so it’s definitely one of the must-go’s to stay a couple of days for relaxing after a packed tour and before heading back home. I love Negombo for the colourful wooden boats. We did go sailing in a very traditional wooden boat that was made with no steel or screws but only woods and rope, which was impressive. Are you getting a wave of nostalgia like me?
The post-wedding tour was full of historic sites, temples and being on the road. What I remember from the tour, or should I say what I liked, was the elephant orphanage, Nuwara Eliya and whale watching in Weligama. Though there are always some deficiencies in every trip, like, I got carsick after the winding road from the Grand Hotel where we stayed in Nuwara Eliya down to the sea level. We did spot a couple of whales in Mirissa, unfortunately they were all quite far away from where our boat was and we missed the chance to see dolphins jumping around with them. Apart from that, I did enjoy the trip, I especially enjoyed the time spent with some of my friends who live far away in the UK.
There are two hotels we stayed in which I really liked. First is the Aliya Resort and Spa in Sigiriya, with an amazing view and spectacular outdoor swimming pool. It’s also a perfect location to stay for visiting the Sigiriya ancient rock fortress. Next on the list is the Grand Hotel in Nuwara Eliya. I love the little English atmosphere and the surroundings; when I looked at the little garden through the window in my hotel room it made me feel like I was back in the U.K. Moreover, the live music and the food provided by the hotel were totally grand.
Sri Lanka has been one of my favourite travel destinations; with the rich culture and vibrant nature that kept inspiring me all the while I was there. Sri Lankans are friendly and kind-hearted and the food was just amazing especially for me, a big fan of spicy food. I can’t really remember how many devilled fish, chicken and beef dishes I had there. I’ll miss you and see you soon Sri Lanka.