Its Winter. And I was thinking about a best place to spend our vacation in the month of January. That’s how we decide, me and my husband Nebojsa to go for a new adventure of 20 days in the beautiful island Sri Lanka. We had heard a lot about this charming island nation. Enough of thoughts, we packed our bags and started our trip from Dubai International Airport in the morning to be arrived in the afternoon at the Bandaranaike International Airport in the capital city of Sri Lanka, Colombo.
Sri Lanka, Here we are!
We had got our two way non-stop flights to Colombo booked at a price of $300 per seats. I think is a pretty great deal. We obtained our 30 days Tourist Visa online by paying $35 per person, cheaper yeah? and it took less than 24 hours to get it approved! Yes! Four and a half hours of comfortable flight in the Emirates Airlines and we are in the land of Sri Lanka! Excitement gone high seeing the beautiful aerial view of Sri Lanka while landing the flight. Colombo airport is a good one, though not big compared to Dubai airport. We had to approach the immigration desk to stamp our visa in the passport. It didn’t take much time to complete the process and get into the fresh air.
Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.
Beach, Our Main Target
Outside the airport there are a lot of taxis available, offering transfer to the city. You may opt for a car rental option if you want to drive yourself through the countryside and to have a full control of the tour. However we decided to travel by bus from the airport to our hotel, Universal Beach Guest House in Hikkaduwa, which was our first destination. At one point, the bus ride wasn’t the best idea as the trip was long, but from the other side, it was so interesting, you can see all the places as bus was traveling through small towns and countrysides. We were very excited to arrive at our hotel on the beach side. Our hotel room was booked for less than $35 per night. It took almost 3 hours of journey before we arrived at the hotel in the evening.
Hikkaduwa is a place for people who love big waves perfect for surfing. We didn’t have such an affection for big waves, though it was an unforgettable experience in the beach. Stayed there for 4 days, relaxed on the beach watching the waves and surfers from many of the coffee bars available on the beach. We astonishingly developed a habit of drinking the delicious healthy coconut water and listening waves from our balcony on every morning. Tried the Sri Lankan food for first time, different tastes, so many new dishes and was really a perfect experience. Fruits ooh ! there is no word to explain about how perfect is all of them and how many new tropical fruits we tried. We visited place with huge turtles, statue of Buddha of 18 meters tall, tsunami memorials, represent the height of tsunami waves that hit Sri Lanka unfortunately in 2004.
After memorable Hikkaduwa days, we moved to another beach called Unawatuna by tuk-tuk ofcourse. It became our favorite mode of transport in Sri Lanka. It took roughly 45 minutes to reach our hotel in Unawatuna. We had a wooden cottage with balcony in Kahuna Hotel, which was perfect for chilling. There we had our favorite bar for a beer and good food. People are so friendly and you can see smiling faces everywhere. During our 4 days in Unawatuna we visited many temples and many nearby beaches. Every beach has something new and different to offer. Every place has breathtaking beautiful nature. Literally we spent our time in the cute heaven of beaches.
Down to the southern tip of Sri Lanka, Mirissa, we traveled by tuk-tuk again for 40 minutes. For us Mirissa was the best place we discovered in Sri Lanka. That’s why we decided to stay there for 10 days! So long yeah! but the longer stay worth it. Mirissa has a long stretch of beach, a lot of beautiful relaxing bars on the beach where you can enjoy the fresh sea food while watching the mesmerizing sunsets. Also in front of Mirissa beach there is huge rock where you can climb to have one of the most beautiful views of all Mirissa beach. We lived in a nice hotel on the beach, Adana Beach Resort, with huge terrace which was the most interesting place for us. We booked this hotel at a price of $35 again a cheaper and worthy option.
Yes, very unexpectedly we got some visitors on our terrace – monkeys! They were always visiting our balcony and we fed our visitors everyday. It was so interesting to see all those monkeys on our balcony and we enjoyed feeding them. There were a lot of activities to do in Mirissa such as visit to wildlife safari park, which is recognized by UNESCO. You can enjoy all day driving around and watching wild animals in the park. Also there is rain forest near by where you can watch different varieties of flora and fauna.
Good Bye Beaches! Hello Mountains
After nice spending of 10 unforgettable days in Mirissa, it is now the time to move on. And for us it started a new adventure, traveling more than 6 hours by train to Kandy, a small city without beaches but surrounded by mountains. Kandy is a place you must visit to feel the real culture of Sri Lanka. We booked our tickets in the first class coach, as for tourists that’s the best option because there is no many people in the coach and you can enjoy the trip, yet inexpensive in the pricing. We captured so nice pictures along with the movement of the train as you can see a lot of mighty mountains! really a wonderful experience what I would highly recommend to everyone to try atleast once in a lifetime.
Now we are in Kandy and again we are lucky to have a nice room for $35 in the Ceyloni Lake View Hotel, with a balcony and with monkeys as regular visitors. We also had the beautiful view of Kandy Lake. On the top of hill there is the biggest temple which you can visit by walk or by taxi or tuk- tuk. We have found a best place for us in Kandy, it was around 5 kms from our hotel, the Royal Botanical Garden. We went there twice and spent full day yet we were in a mood to spend far longer. To enter the garden you will have to cross the river by a rope bridge. Surely it will give you an adventurous experience and even more memorable. Lot to see here, many fascinating and unusual plants. Wonderful palm walks, orchid house, lakes, a lot of monkeys everywhere.
Elephants! Our New Friends!
We traveled around an hour from Kandy to reach a place called Pinnawala to see elephants. On our way to Pinnawala we visited spices plantations as well. A full day was spent with our new found friends. elephants were so so nice. You can ride on them, have a bath with them or you can just relax in cafe watching many elephants gazing around so closer to you. We grabbed so nice memories from Pinnawala and our camera captured nice and beautiful pictures to remind us of this beautiful trip forever.
We love Sri Lanka and She Love Us Back!
After our beautiful days in Kandy, wandering almost all the nuke and corner of Kandy, visiting many historic places and temples, time has arrived to repack our bags. Yes, this time back to the airport and to home. Sri Lanka is the place where you have to go and feel the essence of different life, culture, traditions, food and beautiful landscapes. Sri Lanka is not a rich country, but people live there so happily and friendly. Many tourists across the globe are flowing to Sri Lanka. A lot of tourist attractions and tour activities are offered, so you will never feel bored. It’s a Place where you can enjoy fresh and untouched natural beauty, so tasty fruits, riding in tuk-tuk while watching the roads with no many rules. Will never forget those experiences. So definitely this is a place where we would like to come back.