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Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Travel Outside the Box, Second Stop, Sri Lanka

For decades, the pear-shaped island of Sri Lanka, which falls on a map just below India, was racked by violence. Then, in 2002, a negotiated cease-fire put an end to the festering civil war between the Sinhalese-dominated government and the Tamil insurgents. Today, Sri Lanka is one of the most popular destinations for Europeans but for some reason has yet to catch on with Americans. Suffice to say that it’s worth the effort to get here. Start your visit with a trip to the glorious white-sand beaches, completely deserted except for the resident blue whales, a few hundred yards away in the ocean. After relaxing, challenge yourself with the trek up the beautiful Sigiriya Rock, an ancient rock fortress, for spectacular views of the vast green countryside. Cool down in the cooler climate of Nuwara Eliya and experience the best tea you’ll ever drink at the many plantations. One should never visit Sri Lanka without heading to Pinnawela elephant orphanage, the landscape itself is enough to bring anyone to tears and the sight of the 60 or so elephants coming down to the water to drink is something you’ll never forget. Kandy is a wonderful city to stay I, home to the Buddhist Temple of the Tooth and the monkeys at Udawattakele. In Colombo, take tea at the Mount Lavinia. Conversation is muted by the roar of the surf, the air moist with spray. The 200-year-old hotel dominates a promontory overlooking the Indian Ocean. The ultra-sybaritic hotelier, Aman, has built two exquisite resorts in Sri Lanka. Amangalla is set inside Galle’s seventeenth-century fort, while Amanwella resides on the beach outside Tangalle. 


Posted by Steve Jermanok on 06/07/16 at 06:00 AM
Travel Advice • (5) CommentsPermalink Bookmark and Share


Great article. Would also recommend soaking up some sun at the chilled out beach town, Mirissa - one of our favourite stops in Sri Lanka.

Picture of Graham Comment by Graham
on 06/07/16 at 08:17 PM

Thanks Graham. Was just checking out your photos and write-up of Mirissa in your Sri Lanka Beach Guide. Seems like exactly the chilled beach town I could savor for a week or so. Must be a good place to write.

Picture of Steve Comment by Steve
on 06/07/16 at 10:12 PM

Glad you liked the guide Steve, it was indeed a lovely place to stop and write for a bit. Since you've mentioned it I hope you don't mind if I drop a link for other readers - Did you manage to get to the coast?

Picture of Graham Comment by Graham
on 06/07/16 at 11:25 PM

I was at Hikkaduwa, Graham, but next trip I'm going to check out Mirissa.

Picture of Steve Jermanok Comment by Steve Jermanok
on 06/08/16 at 07:49 AM

Ah yeah we really liked Hikkaduwa too - in fact snorkeling with the resident giant turtle there, in the coral just off the beach, was one of the highlights of the trip. As was releasing some baby turtles into the sea in the turtle hatchery just north of town.

Picture of Graham Comment by Graham
on 06/08/16 at 10:39 PM

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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk. is an Austin-Lehman Adventure's Top 125 Best Travel Blog Semi-Finalist

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