As I write up this weblog submit, i’m searching the window at a really soiled, snowy, chilly winter day in Toronto. The snow is falling incessantly, and a few formidable bicyclist (who’s by some means not blinded by all the snow) is someway managing to pedal his well beyond my window.
Truthfully, it’s fairly depressing.
Adam and I got here back from Sri Lanka a few week ago having spent New Years there, and it TRULY is the pearl of the Indian Ocean. I can’t wait to share with you What to Do in Sri Lanka! (BTW, we booked principally all of our inns utilizing Booking.com . Undoubtedly advocate doing this – you pay once you get to the lodge and most have a very good cancellation coverage.)
Travelling from Toronto, the whole journey was about 26 hours. We caught a flight to Dubai (14 hours) had a four hour layover, and then took a flight from Dubai to Colombo (CMB).
Aspect observe – when you ever fly anyplace on a 10+ hour journey, you MUST. fly Emirates. I have never experienced such unimaginable service. The seats are larger. The attendants are friendlier. The meals is literally better than food I eat in RESTAURANTS.
WHAT TO DO In Sri Lanka
NEGOMBO (FIRST NIGHT)
We arrived late at night time, so we decided to remain someplace close to the lodge (a few 10 minute taxi journey). We booked this cute spot referred to as Hush Lagoon 30 and stayed there for one night time. It truly sits on the Negombo Lagoon, not the ocean haha, however the view continues to be very lovely.
We needed to get to our first seashore resort as quickly as attainable, so we didn’t stick round Negombo for lengthy. It was just a good stopover to energise ourselves after an extended day of journey.
NEGOMBO TO UNAWATUNA (DAY 1 & 2)
HOW WE GOT THERE:
From Negombo we employed a automotive to drive us to Unawatuna, which is somewhat seashore city additional down the coast (the drive took about two hours).
We stayed in an AirB&B referred to as Hibiscus Villa which isn’t ON the seashore, however actually a 1 minute stroll away. It will highly advocate staying here, should you don’t need to take heed to the rowdy seashore bar crowd at night time.
Unawatuna was superb – lovely seashore without hundreds of tourists. There are a ton of dive outlets as you stroll alongside, spots to take a seat down and eat, and paddleboarding (there isn’t a surfing right here, for that you’d go to Weligama). Once we uninterested in the seashore, we walked alongside the street and checked out the opposite resorts.
WHAT TO DO IN UNAWATUNA:
1) Sit on the patio of Solar & Sea and eat while watching the waves crash on the seashore. We came for an early dinner and watched the sun go down behind palm timber and a light-weight home. Truthfully it was so lovely, you should come right here in the event you go.
2) Swing from the rope swing at Dalawella Seashore. The swing was put in by the house owners of the lodge, and again, is a jaw dropping scene. You possibly can seize a tuk tuk right here, or simply stroll alongside the streets for about 10-15 minutes.
Comic story – it wasn’t until I was halfway up the tree that I remembered i’m truly SCARED OF HEIGHTS. Sadly there was like 15 individuals sitting and consuming beers right beside it, so I couldn’t hen out. I additionally managed to get this epic shot, so i’m glad I conquered that worry.
UNAWATUNA TO TANGALLE (DAY three & four)
HOW WE GOT THERE:
After two nights in Unawatuna, we hired another driver to take us to Tangalle. This drive took about 2 hours as nicely, except this time it had much more twists & turns in the street!
I decided I needed to splurge a bit more on the lodge for this location. Tangalle beaches are recognized for his or her long stretches of sand, huge crashing waves, and a serene, peaceful location.
WHAT TO DO IN TANGALLE:
That is the spot for you to do… nothing. Simply chill out. And then chill out some extra.
Should you’re in search of a spot to spend together with your vital different, get away from the busy-ness that is LIFE, I recommend this spot 100%. There were other inns along the seashore (however a minimum of a 5-10 minute walking distance from one another), where you may sit and have a drink or lunch. But in any other case, it’s utterly personal.
Once we first arrived at our lodge (Shivas Seashore Cabanas – literally cabanas ON THE BEACH), we have been speaking in whispers! That’s how quiet it was! Hahaha.
Within the evening we played volleyball, drank coffee, and performed the board games that that they had. We additionally made some dog associates during our keep.
TANGALLE TO UDAWALAWE NATIONAL PARK (DAY 5)
After 4 nights of pure seashore bliss, it was time to make some strikes to the inside! The subsequent day we had an elephant safari!
HOW WE GOT THERE:
Once more, we decided to ebook a automotive to drive us as much as the national park. There are other ways to get around in Sri Lanka – trains, public busses, tuk tuks), however since time was restricted for us, we selected to drive most locations to get there as quickly as attainable)! Most motels will make a name for you to e-book a automotive. It’s costlier however air conditioned and cozy.
WHAT TO DO IN UDAWALAWE:
We stayed within the Athgira River Camping lodge, which was principally a glamping website proper beside the Udawalawe Nationwide Park. I found a information that came HIGHLY really helpful on Trip Advisor, so we booked him for a four hour afternoon safari (his identify is Lahiru Prasad and his e-mail is [email protected] We paid $100 USD complete for the 2 of us).
The safari was a very cool experience, but get able to be ROCKED.
Although we have been in an enormous jeep with suspensions, your complete journey was loopy bumpy. I assume city Beverley just anticipated paved, clean roads in a national park? How embarrassing.
Despite the ups & downs, we noticed SO many elephants. The first group we noticed four elephants and a baby! They acquired so close to the jeep we might have touched them! (But don’t truly do it, dummy). We also saw monkeys cradling their baby’s, crocodiles, King Fishers, water buffalo, jackels and more. (We truly saw so many elephants that by the top we have been identical to ‘move on Lahiru, nothing to see here.’)
UDAWALAWE NATIONAL PARK TO ELLA (DAY 6)
HOW WE GOT THERE:
At present was the day we turned REAL backpackers. Because as an alternative of taking an air-conditioned, cozy ass automotive, we took A PUBLIC BUS! One hour on a public bus from Udawalawe to Ella.
It’s truly super straightforward – simply seize a tuk tuk from your lodge to drop you off on the bus cease. We waited for about 10-15 minutes earlier than the bus got here. There were about 12 other tourists with backpacks waiting to get on with us, and when the bus pulled up, it was PACKED.
Cheng just isn’t one to stand for any amount of time, so I threw my backpack at Adam and screamed “PUT IT IN THE BACK!!” (FYI: they have a ‘trunk’ in the bus for backpacks, because there isn’t a room for them on the actual bus). So in case you’re determined to get a seat, just keep in mind that trick.
Ella is a real unique metropolis. It’s excessive up in the mountains, so the air is cooler. There’s tons of eating places and bars, little outlets and vacationers. Nevertheless it’s not over-the-top touristy – everyone is respectful and the food right here is AMAZING.
WHAT TO DO IN ELLA:
We solely had someday in Ella so we needed to benefit from it. First we started by mountaineering Little Adams Peak. It’s a simple/intermediate hike that takes about 45 minutes up and down. When you get to the highest you’ll discover two extra peaks, which might be relatively straightforward to walk to.
After we hiked down from Little Adams Peak, we found somewhat aspect entrance to walk to the Nine Arch Bridge. It’s a few 12 minute stroll by way of the forest and you end up at some extent that overlooks this lovely bridge. You can too walk alongside the railway to get there and stroll on the bridge itself, but I most popular this spot!
After ready 15 minutes a practice drove across the 9 Arch Bridge which was so cool to see! Once you’ve gotten your photographs, you possibly can maintain strolling alongside the trail which can convey you right down to the tracks, after which stroll along the tracks to convey you back to Ella! It’s a few 20 minute stroll.
For dinner that night time we sat down at La Mensa. Most locations have been quite busy and the air was buzzing, however La Mensa was a bit quieter. I might return there in a HEARTBEAT. The employees are so friendly and the meals was the most effective I had had thus far in Sri Lanka.
ELLA TO COLOMBO (DAY 7)
This was the final full day earlier than flying out to Bangladesh, so we had to make our approach back to the place we began!
HOW WE GOT THERE:
I DO NOT RECOMMEND doing the journey that we did in at some point – but we had no choice if we needed to make our flight! We ended up on a 9.5 hour practice journey from Ella to Colombo: 6.5 hours to Kandy, and then another three hours to Colombo.
I had learn that the practice journey from Ella to Kandy (about 6.5 hours) was one of the lovely on the planet, so I insisted that we do it. We tried to e-book tickets prematurely however they bought out too shortly.
As an alternative, we obtained to the practice station around 6:15 AM (practice left at 6:39 AM) and there was already a line of in all probability 40 individuals! In the long run it didn’t matter – Ella to Kandy just isn’t as busy because the journey Kandy to Ella, so the practice was principally empty when it arrived and everyone acquired their seats (not just Cheng this time).
The journey was really lovely – we principally have been driving on the aspect of the Sri Lankan mountains, via forests and small towns. The 6.5 hours are really not that dangerous – you get to speak to some locals, individuals come on with food at every single practice cease, and the breeze keeps you cool.
The last three hours we sucked it up and made it into Colombo!
WHAT TO DO IN COLOMBO:
Sadly I don’t have much to offer right here. We truly didn’t e-book a lodge prematurely, and just had a tuk tuk driver take us to at least one. NOT THE SMARTEST DECISION GUYS.
Colombo is crazy. Gone have been the serene beaches, friendly vacationers, and empty streets. We have been hit with CHAOS. EVERYWHERE.
We walked to a restaurant beside Ministry of Crab which had a big courtyard where you can sit and have drinks/dinner. It was truly really cool – a stay band started enjoying, and all the locals came out! Everyone was consuming these large mini kegs of beer, individuals have been dancing, and the band jammed out to prime 40’s hits. Should you’re there on a Saturday, FIND THIS SPOT!
The subsequent morning we grabbed a taxi at 5 AM which took us to the airport to seize our flight to Dhaka. We have been very sad to be leaving, but in addition knew we made absolutely the MOST of our time in Sri Lanka! When you have 7-10 days to spend on this country, I recommend going an identical route we did. There are extra stops you can also make along the best way, nevertheless it all will depend on what you want out of the trip. I actually needed seashore vibes for the first few days, so we spent more time there.
Whatever you need – Sri Lanka has acquired it!!!
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