Skip to main content
main content

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka- not without reason called The Pearl of the Indian Ocean. A true gem of a destination- unpolished, remote and still undiscovered in places…An island famous for its cultural history, tropical beaches, exquisite wildlife, and let’s not forget about the surf! This is where a passing elephant can steal your ice cream if you are not careful enough and it’s perfectly normal to hang out on the moving train. Fitting a family of five into a tuk-tuk to go up the mountain over the boulders at night will also do just fine. It’s only the surrounding darkness that makes you blissfully unaware of hanging over the cliff when you topple to one side! This is where adventure awaits if you are ready to take it; it’s fine if not. Plenty of peaceful places amongst tea plantations for well-deserved R&R. That is if your husband lets you! There is so much to see and do in Sri Lanka… It’s hard to do it all, however when you only have 2 weeks and 3 kids in tow. It’s a balancing act between exploring, relaxing and enjoying!

Now, call it spontaneous or crazy, but we only booked accommodation for the first 2 nights for maximum flexibility and to let us get used to the heat. And it was hot- which is given being in close proximity to the equator. However, travelling with kids- you gotta be prepared and have plenty of sun tun lotion at your disposal. It’s close to mission impossible to find it in more remote places.

Our first visit to the beach in Negombo was rather interesting. The buses parked on the sand, plenty of local people in their Sunday best in water, and zero bikini bathers in 35-degree heat- this was a novelty. One was sure- us as white people were a real attraction, and before I knew it half of the beach was taking pictures with my children! And that’s another amazing thing about Sri Lanka- its people. Kind, genuine, always happy to help and incredibly hospitable. There was no point we would feel intimidated or unsafe. Quite the opposite- always welcomed! And more importantly, not ripped off! The prices were fair; dinner for 5 with five different curries and drinks cost us a bargain of £15.

To experience the country in and out, we booked accommodations of various budgets and levels of comfort. From homestays in the middle of the jungle (no aircon, but mosquito net was a bonus! James Bond's famous Martini comes to my mind- sweated, not bitten) through mid-range air B&Bs and hotels to our beloved Villa Roy at Hiriketiya Beach. Spacious, beautifully designed, with a private dipping pool- we felt so spoilt and relaxed. This place really made our holidays unforgettable and made us long to return. Here, we fell in love with palm-fringed, golden sand beaches and a slower, peaceful way of life. There is something about Hiriketiya that makes you forget about time and the mundane daily routine, and we love it for it. Southern beaches had more of a hippie vibe and were more Westernised in clothing standards, lol! Bikini and sun soaking was a go! This is where we stopped for a bit longer to chill and ride the waves or, more accurately, attempt to!

Travelling around SL can be done in a multitude of ways and budgets. We normally drive ourselves, but SL has other ideas for tourists, and you need to get a licence in Colombo.  Which, as we learned from another family, is merely a formality.  We took a driver, but as they say, if you have time and no money, there are places to rent a tuk-tuk and discover the surroundings at a slower pace. As my husband looooves a bargain, he declined a luxurious air-con van and settled for a 3x cheaper Mitsubishi estate, which wheezed up hills, clunked over holes and had a fan wheezing like an asthmatic! Nevertheless, it took us places!

One of the real highlights was the train from Kandy to Ella. Typical Grant’s- semi-prepared and semi-organised, we didn’t realise that the train needs to be booked weeks in advance in season, yiks! Needless to say, we were pumped to get 1st class observation deck tickets in the next two days. On the day little we knew there were massive delays, and we were pushed to take the train that was 4 hours delayed- 2nd class, no fan, windows open carriage.  2nd class?! I paid for 1st with A/C and observation window! It turned out to be the best ride – noisy, not too hot (it actually got quite cold as the sun set!), and the open door meant lots of pictures of the little and the big kids hanging out of the carriage as the train sped through the tea plantations. Who cares about safety?!

We had a truly awesome time in Sri Lanka. Although Covid delayed our travel to this amazing place by three years, it was definitely a holiday worth the wait. With lots of places offering remote working- who knows, could become a second home! I wish, she says!

 

Our itinerary:

  1. Flight to Colombo
  2. Colombo Aiport to Negombo by taxi- 2 nights there.
  3. Our B&B host organised a driver to take us to the elephant sanctuary and Sigiria, where we stayed one night at a homestay. We climbed Pidirangaya rock for sunset on arrival.
  4. We hired a driver to go to Kandy, and on the way, we explored Dambulla temple and Ramboda waterfall.
  5. By car to Nuwara Eliya, 1-night stay
  6. Train from Nuwara Eliya to Ella where we stayed two nights in the mountains amongst tea plantations. Stunning!
  7. By car to Dickwella beach where we stayed 2 nights
  8. Moved to Villa Roy in Hiriketiya Beach by tuk tuk- 5 nights
  9. By car back to the airport

sri lanka cejlon 1 sri lanka cejlon 2 sri lanka cejlon 3 sri lanka cejlon 4 sri lanka cejlon 5 sri lanka cejlon 6 sri lanka cejlon 7 sri lanka cejlon 8 sri lanka cejlon 9 sri lanka cejlon 10 sri lanka cejlon 11 sri lanka cejlon 12 sri lanka cejlon 13 sri lanka cejlon 14 sri lanka cejlon 15 sri lanka cejlon 16 sri lanka cejlon 17 sri lanka cejlon 18 sri lanka cejlon 19 sri lanka cejlon 20 sri lanka cejlon 21 sri lanka cejlon 22 sri lanka cejlon 23 sri lanka cejlon 24 sri lanka cejlon 25 sri lanka cejlon 26 sri lanka cejlon 27 sri lanka cejlon 28 sri lanka cejlon 29 sri lanka cejlon 30 sri lanka cejlon 31 sri lanka cejlon 32 sri lanka cejlon 33 sri lanka cejlon 34 sri lanka cejlon 35 sri lanka cejlon 36 sri lanka cejlon 37 sri lanka cejlon 38 sri lanka cejlon 39 sri lanka cejlon 40 sri lanka cejlon 41 sri lanka cejlon 42 sri lanka cejlon 43 sri lanka cejlon 44 sri lanka cejlon 45 sri lanka cejlon 46 sri lanka cejlon 47 sri lanka cejlon 48 sri lanka cejlon 49 sri lanka cejlon 50 sri lanka cejlon 51 sri lanka cejlon 52 sri lanka cejlon 53 sri lanka cejlon 54 sri lanka cejlon 55 sri lanka cejlon 56 sri lanka cejlon 57 sri lanka cejlon 58 sri lanka cejlon 59 sri lanka cejlon 60 sri lanka cejlon 61 sri lanka cejlon 62 sri lanka cejlon 63 sri lanka cejlon 64 sri lanka cejlon 65 sri lanka cejlon 66 sri lanka cejlon 67 sri lanka cejlon 68 sri lanka cejlon 69 sri lanka cejlon 70 sri lanka cejlon 71 sri lanka cejlon 72 sri lanka cejlon 73 sri lanka cejlon 74 sri lanka cejlon 75 sri lanka cejlon 76 sri lanka cejlon 77 sri lanka cejlon 78 sri lanka cejlon 79 sri lanka cejlon 80 sri lanka cejlon 81 sri lanka cejlon 85 sri lanka cejlon 86 sri lanka cejlon 87 sri lanka cejlon 88 sri lanka cejlon 89 sri lanka cejlon 90 sri lanka cejlon 91 sri lanka cejlon 92 sri lanka cejlon 93 sri lanka cejlon 94 sri lanka cejlon 95 sri lanka cejlon 96 sri lanka cejlon 97 sri lanka cejlon 98 sri lanka cejlon 99 sri lanka cejlon 100 sri lanka cejlon 101 sri lanka cejlon 102 sri lanka cejlon 103 sri lanka cejlon 104 sri lanka cejlon 105 sri lanka cejlon 106 sri lanka cejlon 107 sri lanka cejlon 108 sri lanka cejlon 109 sri lanka cejlon 110 sri lanka cejlon 111 sri lanka cejlon 112 sri lanka cejlon 113 sri lanka cejlon 114 sri lanka cejlon 115 sri lanka cejlon 116 sri lanka cejlon 117 sri lanka cejlon 118 sri lanka cejlon 119 sri lanka cejlon 120 sri lanka cejlon 121 sri lanka cejlon 122 sri lanka cejlon 123 sri lanka cejlon 124 sri lanka cejlon 125 sri lanka cejlon 126 sri lanka cejlon 127 sri lanka cejlon 128 sri lanka cejlon 129 sri lanka cejlon 130 sri lanka cejlon 131 sri lanka cejlon 132 sri lanka cejlon 133 sri lanka cejlon 134 sri lanka cejlon 135 sri lanka cejlon 136 sri lanka cejlon 137 sri lanka cejlon 138 sri lanka cejlon 140 sri lanka cejlon 141 sri lanka cejlon 142 sri lanka cejlon 143 sri lanka cejlon 144 sri lanka cejlon 145

 

Previous Blog Post
Maldives
Next Blog Post

Post your comment

You cannot post comments until you have logged in. Login Here.

Comments

No one has commented on this page yet.

RSS feed for comments on this page | RSS feed for all comments