My Sri Lanka in a week

Sri Lanka, known as the pearl of the Indian Ocean, is the perfect holiday destination for almost any traveler. This country offers you such a wide variety of things. It is rich in culture and history, steeped in religious traditions, has beautiful beaches, hill stations and amazing food. My family and I covered the South of Sri Lanka in a week. Here are some of the highlights on Sri Lanka points of interest and a few tips for those who would like to travel there.

Our basic itinerary was Goa- Chennai-Colombo>> Negombo-Kandy- Nuwara Eliya- Ella- Galle- Colombo>> Mumbai-Goa.

One must try the sea food here as it is fresh and delicious. Chill out at the beach and if you have time, drive down to Galle face green, maybe get an ayurvedic massage as well. En route to Kandy, do visit the Pinnawalla elephant orphanage and the Peradeniya Botanical gardens.

In Kandy, one can visit the temple of the Golden tooth and enjoy an evening by the lake. The seminary of St. Joseph Vaz in Ampitiya is also close by and is worth a visit. Make sure you get a feel of the Kandiyan culture by attending a Kandiyan dance performance. If you have time, visit a Batik factory and you could even take a little piece of this place home in the form of a Kandiyan saree.

Nuwara Eliya
This is a beautiful hill station in Sri Lanka. For all those who love trekking and adventure, this is the place to be. Nature is still in a pristine form and this place will definitely take your breath away. The Ramboda falls are a must visit and if you are up for a good trek then do go to World’s end point in Horton Plains National Park. Be a part of one of nature’s miracles at Adams Peak where you can witness the beauty of butterfly migration. Don’t forget to visit a tea factory, perhaps Glenlock or Bluefield, see the entire process of how tea in made and purchase enough for yourself and those back at home. Gregory Lake, the old post office and the Grand Hotel are worth a visit as well. If you are in Nuwara around December or January, make sure to treat yourself at the Adma Agro Strawberry farm. Take a train journey from Nanu-Oya railway station. We journeyed from here to Ella on the 3 PM train ( first class coach, ticket @ 1000 LKR)

Ella is a quaint little town where you can visit the Damodara nine arch bridge, the Ravana caves and water fall and Ella rock. If possible, grab a traditional Sri Lankan meal at the Ella Village Inn Restaurant while you are here. We drove down to Dickwella lace centre from here and visited the beaches in Mirissa and Unawatune. On the way, sample local fruit like King coconut and mangosteen. The Kasgoda turtle hatchery was a beautiful experience as well.

Galle has a distinct Portuguese and Dutch feel to it. Some of the must visit places are the Galle fort and cricket stadium. Don’t forget to buy your spices here, as Galle is famous for cinnamon.

We headed to Colombo and spent our last night here. If you’d like to shop, especially for clothes and shoes, there are several places to go to in Colombo. Independence square has a nice shopping arcade with great restaurants as well. Do visit Asylum if you land up there. Beat the heat with a refreshing woodapple shake topped with vanilla ice cream and if you happen to see a Roots outlet, do try their Ambarella juice which is really unique and delicious.

All in all I would say that although Sri Lanka may be a tiny country, it provides you with everything you could possibly hope a holiday destination would have. So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and get going.