Jump to content

Sri Lanka: Best Tips, Ideas, Must-Sees?


TLCOhio
 Share

Recommended Posts

With our Mumbai to Singapore, February 2024, Silversea cruise scrubbing out from its three planned days in Myanmar/Burma (due to military/economic uncertainities there), they are adding two more days for Sri Lanka, plus more time in Phuket.  

 

We will still have our originally-scheduled two days for Colombo, Sri Lanka, Fri.-Sat., Feb. 16-17.  But, then they are adding a full day each for port stops at Hambantota and Trincomalee, respectively, at the southern and northeast parts of Sri Lanka.

 

What are the key suggestions, tips and ideas for in and around Colombo, Hambantota and Trincomalee??  Must-sees, best options for Sri Lanka??

We like history, culture, architecture, photography, nature, wildlife, food, etc.  First time for visiting India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, etc.  Tell us more!

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Sydney to NZ/Auckland Adventure, live/blog 2014 sampling/details with many exciting visuals and key highlights.  On page 23, post #571, see a complete index for all of the pictures, postings.  Now at 243,992 views.

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/1896175-solstice-live-australianzhawaii-many-pix’s-jan-20-feb-3/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From a China newspaper linked below, they had this headline: Sri Lanka ranked No 1 travel destination in 2019 by Lonely Planet with these highlights:Sri Lanka has claimed the top spot in the world's leading travel guide, the Lonely Planet as the best travel destination in 2019.  Sri Lanka topped the list of best countries to visit primarily because travel has become much easier in the island country since the civil war ended in 2009.  'It's changed so much, so quickly, and in a lot of ways that makes travel much easier,' Matt Philips, destination editor at Lonely Planet said.  Travel products evolved in Sri Lanka, and now includes diverse opportunities beyond mere beach holidays, to visiting national parks to see elephants and leopards.  'It's also great for foodies. Sri Lanka has everything,' Philips added.   This year, over 1.7 million tourists have visited the island country with the government targeting 2.5 million arrivals by the end of the year.   China, India and Britain are the leading markets with the most number of arrivals.

 

Full story at:

https://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201810/24/WS5bcfdd1ba310eff3032843d0.html

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Late Summer 2022, many scenic visuals and details from Canada Maritimes doing Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Cape Breton Island, etc., via a Tauck land tour.  Visual Summary:

www.flickr.com/photos/196555480@N08/albums

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, oldmoneytexan said:

Would love to read some replies.  Wife and I are going on a very similar itinerary on Regent next April.

 

Appreciate this great follow-up from our travel friend in Texas.  Yes, will be happy to share more here as I continue researching for a first-time exploring of these exotic areas.  Hopefully, others will not be shy and they will post about their past experiences, smart tips, best loves, top favorites, etc.  During our February 2024 Silversea sailing/adventure, I will do a live/blog and share many visuals, answer questions, etc.    

 

From Forbes Magazine in the past week, they had this headline: Under-The-Radar Beach Destination Is Sure To Attract Visitors with these highlights for two beach locations in Sri Lanka:Nestled in the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a captivating island nation that offers a kaleidoscope of wonders for travelers seeking diverse experiences. From pristine beaches and lush landscapes to ancient temples and rich cultural heritage, Sri Lanka has plenty to see and do. Plus, Sri Lankans are known for their warmth and hospitality.  The pristine beaches found here are a big draw for travelers in the know and a welcome surprise for first-time visitors. With almost 1,000 miles of coastline, Sri Lanka is a paradise for those seeking sand, sun and water activities.

 

Two scenic areas were detailed, including: "Uga Bay offers immersive cultural experiences through Trincomalee city tours. Guests can explore the cultural landscape, visit local attractions, and gain a deeper understanding of Sri Lanka's heritage."  From the map, this beach site is near Trincomalee, one of our cruise stops. 

 

Also:  "Jungle Beach is an ideal location for whale and dolphin watching. The waters off the coast provide opportunities to spot the majestic Blue Whale, the largest mammal on earth. Sperm Whales, known as the deepest diving whales, are also frequently sighted. Spinner Dolphins, famous for their acrobatic displays, can be seen in large numbers."  This location is just south of Galle, noted for its historic site dating back to the days of the Portugal settlements.  

 

The various visuals and descriptions from these different Sri Lanka beaches look spectacular and very inviting.  Any others been to Sri Lanka and can tell us more?

 

Full story at:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/judykoutsky/2023/06/14/this-under-the-radar-beach-destination-is-sure-to-attract-visitors-this-summer/?sh=4c2053bb2b46

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise from Copenhagen, July 2010, to the top of Europe. Scenic visuals with key tips. Live/blog at 247,607 views.

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/1172051-livesilver-cloud-norway-coastfjords-july-1-16-reports/

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

In Hambantota, I would recommend the Bundala national park for wildlife spotting. It´s less crowded and more easily accessible than the more famous Yala national park. You are guaranteed to spot a lot of wild elephants, and the scenery is quite nice.

 

Frankly, I do not know why they recommend Sri Lanka as a beach destination because the beaches, though nice enough, are not comparable to those in the Caribbean or in some other Southeast Asian destinations. The hill country and the tea plantations are very beautiful though, and the tea you get to taste & buy if you visit the plantations is usually extremely good. If Silversea offers a train excursion from Colombo to Kandy and the hill country, I would suggest you do it instead of spending time in Colombo which is a very hectic city with lots of traffic. Colombo has some nice heritage sights like Galle Face with its surroundings, but getting around the town can be a hassle and you will inevitably spend a lot of time in traffic. If you have a chance to visit Nuwara Eliya, it's very beautiful too with some spectacular waterfalls. 

 

Though the distances in Sri Lanka may look short on a map, the road system is not very well developed and the traffic can be very hectic indeed, so travel by car or bus takes a lot of time. Going by train is much better and more comfortable, and the scenery is lovely too.

 

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/28/2023 at 4:14 PM, Maria63 said:

In Hambantota, I would recommend the Bundala national park for wildlife spotting. It´s less crowded and more easily accessible than the more famous Yala national park. You are guaranteed to spot a lot of wild elephants, and the scenery is quite nice.   Frankly, I do not know why they recommend Sri Lanka as a beach destination because the beaches, though nice enough, are not comparable to those in the Caribbean or in some other Southeast Asian destinations. Colombo has some nice heritage sights like Galle Face with its surroundings, but getting around the town can be a hassle and you will inevitably spend a lot of time in traffic. If you have a chance to visit Nuwara Eliya, it's very beautiful too with some spectacular waterfalls. Though the distances in Sri Lanka may look short on a map, the road system is not very well developed and the traffic can be very hectic indeed, so travel by car or bus takes a lot of time. Going by train is much better and more comfortable, and the scenery is lovely too.

 

Super appreciate these great Sri Lanka insights, comments and follow-ups.  Very helpful.   Wise background as to the challenges with the road conditions/limitations there.  Sounds like it is not all easy, smooth, flowing Interstate Highways in Sri Lanka.  Right?

 

Will discuss more with my wife.  Right now for Hambantota, we are leaning to do a ship's tour that includes the religious sites of Kataragama, plus Velgam Vehera.  Then lunch at Jetwing Yula Hotel and then time at Yula National Park.  Bundala might be less crowded, but Yula has a wider variety of creatures, birds, etc., there.  Trade-offs??  Will keep researching and planning.  

 

At Trincomalee, we are looking at doing a ship's tour for the Ruins of Polonnaruwa.  From the Eyewitness book on Sri Lanka, this sight/location seems to offer a nice variety of different settings and aspects of culture/history.  

 

With our two days plus in Myanmar/Burma being scrubbed, this means an added two full days at locations in Sri Lanka.  Looking forward to any and all added tips and suggestions from those who have been there.  

 

On one of our days from Colombo, we are looking to go down to Galle, see its Fort, plus doing some sampling of the Madu River and its nature options.  

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Venice: Loving It & Why??!!  Is one of your future desires or past favorites? See these many visual samples for its great history and architecture.  This posting is now at 104,695 views.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1278226

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/28/2023 at 3:14 PM, Maria63 said:

In Hambantota, I would recommend the Bundala national park for wildlife spotting. It´s less crowded and more easily accessible than the more famous Yala national park. You are guaranteed to spot a lot of wild elephants, and the scenery is quite nice.

 

Frankly, I do not know why they recommend Sri Lanka as a beach destination because the beaches, though nice enough, are not comparable to those in the Caribbean or in some other Southeast Asian destinations. The hill country and the tea plantations are very beautiful though, and the tea you get to taste & buy if you visit the plantations is usually extremely good. If Silversea offers a train excursion from Colombo to Kandy and the hill country, I would suggest you do it instead of spending time in Colombo which is a very hectic city with lots of traffic. Colombo has some nice heritage sights like Galle Face with its surroundings, but getting around the town can be a hassle and you will inevitably spend a lot of time in traffic. If you have a chance to visit Nuwara Eliya, it's very beautiful too with some spectacular waterfalls. 

 

Though the distances in Sri Lanka may look short on a map, the road system is not very well developed and the traffic can be very hectic indeed, so travel by car or bus takes a lot of time. Going by train is much better and more comfortable, and the scenery is lovely too.

 

 

I was going to recommend Yala National Park for Hambantota but will now make a note that for a future stop there go to Bundala.  Thanks!   
 

we loved Yala in 2016 seeing so many wild elephants, a leopard, monkeys, boars, jack rabbits, a ton of birds.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One of the best places to stay (or visit) is Mount Lavinia.  The Mount Lavinia hotel is an old colonial hotel, with amazing service and beautiful beach front views and access.  A little known treasure, unless you have visited (or have family in Sri Lanka).  Their egg hoppers breakfast is worth the stay alone. 

 

IMHO it is worth hiring a private guide and car to take you to places like - Sigiriya  to see Lion Rock, Kandy (try to see the Kandyan dancers), Jaffna, Trincomalee, Hambantota, Bundala etc.with a stop at the elephant orphanage and tea plantations on the way.  As others have noted, the road system is still being developed and it can take time to even get out of Colombo.  Cattle and livestock often 'hold up' traffic.  Trains are certainly another good option.  Galle face is definitely worth visiting.

 

It is certainly an Island paradise, sometimes to see the true beauty, however, you need to get off the beaten track.  If you have a few days there it is certainly worth considering a private driver/guide and staying somewhere such as Kandy as your midpoint overnight.  Enjoy!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When you visit some religious sites in Sri Lanka, and India, you need to remove your shoes. Sometimes the paving stones can be very hot, having baked in the sun for several hours.

I would recommend you stick a pair of “footsie” socks in your pocket so you can pop them on and avoid burning your feet. These are the socks with little plastic pads on the sole, they give good protection, plus keep your feet clean. They also rinse out easily and dry overnight ready for your next visit!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Kristal Blade said:

When you visit some religious sites in Sri Lanka, and India, you need to remove your shoes. Sometimes the paving stones can be very hot, having baked in the sun for several hours.  I would recommend you stick a pair of “footsie” socks in your pocket so you can pop them on and avoid burning your feet. These are the socks with little plastic pads on the sole, they give good protection, plus keep your feet clean. They also rinse out easily and dry overnight ready for your next visit!

 

Appreciate these great comments and follow-ups above from Wayfairers, Aussie lost in space and Kristal Blade.  Very helpful and interesting.  Keep it coming!!  Excellent sharing.  

 

Loved this summary of "It is certainly an Island paradise, sometimes to see the true beauty, however, you need to get off the beaten track.  If you have a few days there it is certainly worth considering a private driver/guide and staying somewhere such as Kandy as your midpoint overnight."    Yes, doing some type of private tour could be great, but we on the cruise ship with included meals, tours, etc.  Trade-offs!!  Am considering and evaluating the various options and potentials.   

 

From the New Zealand Herald earlier this month, they had this headline: First timer’s guide to Sri Lanka: What to see and do with these highlights: “For an island nation that’s half the size of our own North Island, Sri Lanka sure does pack an oversized punch. Twenty-two million people call this island nation home and it’s often compared favourably against its bigger neighbour, India. Visitors will be pleasantly surprised to discover how relaxed it really is, as well as how much there is to see and do, especially considering its relatively confined dimensions. Ancient cities, wildlife parks, palm-fringed beaches, picturesque hill country… it really does have it all.”

 

Here is more from their reporting: "After Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa became the centre of the Sinhalese empire and its thousand-year-old ruins are in remarkable condition. Sigiriya was the fortified pleasure palace for a wayward king, built on top of a rocky summit that can be reached after climbing 1200 steps."  Too many steps for us to do Sigiriya, but nice summary for Polonnaruwa.   

 

This profile also shared: "For more to see and do, visit srilanka.travel."

 

Full story at:

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/travel/first-timers-guide-to-sri-lanka-what-to-see-and-do/HWEG2SL7WBGGZBZY7K4EVBCA2Q/

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Amazon River-Caribbean 2015 adventure live/blog starting in Barbados. Many visuals from this amazing river and Caribbean Islands (Dutch ABC's, St. Barts, Dominica, Grenada, San Juan, etc.).  Now at 71,988 views:

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2076101-live-amazon-river-caribbean-many-pix’s-terryohio/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

From the New Zealand Herald earlier this month, they had this headline: First timer’s guide to Sri Lanka: What to see and do with these highlights: “For an island nation that’s half the size of our own North Island, Sri Lanka sure does pack an oversized punch. Twenty-two million people call this island nation home and it’s often compared favourably against its bigger neighbour, India. Visitors will be pleasantly surprised to discover how relaxed it really is, as well as how much there is to see and do, especially considering its relatively confined dimensions. Ancient cities, wildlife parks, palm-fringed beaches, picturesque hill country… it really does have it all.”

 

For one location we are planning to visit, they noted: "Polonnaruwa became the centre of the Sinhalese empire and its thousand-year-old ruins are in remarkable condition."

 

Full story at:

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/travel/first-timers-guide-to-sri-lanka-what-to-see-and-do/HWEG2SL7WBGGZBZY7K4EVBCA2Q/

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Athens & Greece: Visuals, details from two visits in a city and nearby with great history, culture and architecture.  Now at 55,063 views.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1101008

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
19 minutes ago, cosytoes said:

There are seven of us with two days in Sri lanka,  Colombo, in December 2023 can anyone recommend a private guide or tour? Thanks 

I’ve used Blue Lanka for day tours and been very happy.  They are easy to work with, flexible and knowledgeable 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/10/2023 at 6:42 AM, Wayfairers said:

I’ve used Blue Lanka for day tours and been very happy.  They are easy to work with, flexible and knowledgeable 

We were in ported in Colombo 2020 on a World Cruise just before the “ shut down “ .  A tuk tuk took us to the local museum which was worth seeing, there an tourist had just arrived from China escaping Covid. It is a crazy busy city, this time we plan to take a tour, thanks for suggesting Blue Lanka. 

Back to 2020, after Sri Lanka, the ship sat in the ocean waiting for instructions as to where to sail next to flee from the pandemic. Hooray! We circumnavigated Australia for a month before the oceans and skies were closed. Unfortunately we missed the rest of the WC. 
 

Wayfairers do you have a specific tour you would recommend? We are there for one day.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Last visit our ship was there overnight.  The first day our tour went to Galle seeing Stilt Fisherman, a turtle hatchery (awesome), a mask factory and a Buddhist temple. It was a fun day but the 3 hour drive to Galle was long. The stops helped.  It was fun for one time because it was different.  
 

The other day we did a city tour and it was interesting.  Highlights were the water temple where we saw a gorgeous wedding, floating market, peppermint mosque and a good street market.  
 

Next year we have a one day stop and are going to see Ingiriva.  

All tours with Blue Lanka.   Really depends on what you like to do and how much time you have in port.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 hours ago, Wayfairers said:

Last visit our ship was there overnight.  The first day our tour went to Galle seeing Stilt Fisherman, a turtle hatchery (awesome), a mask factory and a Buddhist temple. It was a fun day but the 3 hour drive to Galle was long. The stops helped.  It was fun for one time because it was different.  The other day we did a city tour and it was interesting.  Highlights were the water temple where we saw a gorgeous wedding, floating market, peppermint mosque and a good street market.  All tours with Blue Lanka.   Really depends on what you like to do and how much time you have in port.  

 

Appreciate these various follow-ups and very helpful background information about Sri Lanka.  We'll check more as to offerings from Blue Lanka. Keep it coming with this great sharing.   

 

From the London/UK Daily Mail this weekend, they had this headline: Birds (and big cats) of paradise: Sri Lanka is best known for its elephants - but wildlife of a different kind is the real attraction with these highlights:You might never have thought of going to Sri Lanka for bird-watching.  About 5,000 years ago, at what is now Kurullangala Prehistoric Cave Art Site, an unknown artist sketched the native peacocks. The depictions are so accurate it’s clear that bird-watching on this Indian Ocean island has been fashionable for a long time.

 

Many colorful and interesting birds are pictured in this report.  Fascinating!!  

 

Here is more background: "Sri Lanka has had its difficulties in recent years. A long civil war was followed by the Boxing Day tsunami of 2004, a terrorist attack in 2019, the Covid pandemic and a collapse of its economy in 2022. Yet despite all this, the country remains friendly, safe and optimistic, and as extraordinary for nature as it has always been.  In all, there are 33 bird species unique to Sri Lanka. If you want to see all of them, there is one place to go: Sinharaja Rainforest in the south."

 

Full story at:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-12498689/Birds-big-cats-paradise-Sri-Lanka-best-known-elephants-wildlife-different-kind-real-attraction.html

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

AFRICA?!!?: Fun, interesting visuals, plus travel details from this early 2016 live/blog. At 54,814 views. Featuring Cape Town, South Africa’s coast, Mozambique, Victoria Falls/Zambia and Botswana's famed Okavango Delta.

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2310337

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, TLCOhio said:

 

Appreciate these various follow-ups and very helpful background information about Sri Lanka.  We'll check more as to offerings from Blue Lanka. Keep it coming with this great sharing.   

 

From the London/UK Daily Mail this weekend, they had this headline: Birds (and big cats) of paradise: Sri Lanka is best known for its elephants - but wildlife of a different kind is the real attraction with these highlights:You might never have thought of going to Sri Lanka for bird-watching.  About 5,000 years ago, at what is now Kurullangala Prehistoric Cave Art Site, an unknown artist sketched the native peacocks. The depictions are so accurate it’s clear that bird-watching on this Indian Ocean island has been fashionable for a long time.

 

Many colorful and interesting birds are pictured in this report.  Fascinating!!  

 

Here is more background: "Sri Lanka has had its difficulties in recent years. A long civil war was followed by the Boxing Day tsunami of 2004, a terrorist attack in 2019, the Covid pandemic and a collapse of its economy in 2022. Yet despite all this, the country remains friendly, safe and optimistic, and as extraordinary for nature as it has always been.  In all, there are 33 bird species unique to Sri Lanka. If you want to see all of them, there is one place to go: Sinharaja Rainforest in the south."

 

Full story at:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-12498689/Birds-big-cats-paradise-Sri-Lanka-best-known-elephants-wildlife-different-kind-real-attraction.html

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

AFRICA?!!?: Fun, interesting visuals, plus travel details from this early 2016 live/blog. At 54,814 views. Featuring Cape Town, South Africa’s coast, Mozambique, Victoria Falls/Zambia and Botswana's famed Okavango Delta.

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2310337

If your ship ever stops at Hambantota - Yala National Park is wonderful.  We had a safari on a day trip with Shehan Safari and saw lots of elephants, a leopard, monkeys, white Pelicans, painted storks, kingfisher bird, mongoose, monitor lizard, spotted deer, boars, crocodiles, jack rabbit, bald eagles, fluorescent green birds, fluorescent blue birds, brown Pygmy birds, egrets and cows and I am sure I forgot to make a note of some animals.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

31 minutes ago, Wayfairers said:

If your ship ever stops at Hambantota - Yala National Park is wonderful.  We had a safari on a day trip with Shehan Safari and saw lots of elephants, a leopard, monkeys, white Pelicans, painted storks, kingfisher bird, mongoose, monitor lizard, spotted deer, boars, crocodiles, jack rabbit, bald eagles, fluorescent green birds, fluorescent blue birds, brown Pygmy birds, egrets and cows and I am sure I forgot to make a note of some animals.

 

YES!!  We will have a Hambantota, Sri Lanka, port stop on Sun./Feb. 18, 4 am arrive till 7 pm.  Right now for this Hambantota visit, we are leaning to do a ship's tour that includes the religious site of Kataragama, plus Velgam Vehera.  Then lunch at Jetwing Yula Hotel and finish at Yula National Park.  Bundala might be less crowded, but Yula has a wider variety of creatures, birds, etc., there.  Trade-offs to consider??

 

Appreciate your great follow-up and specific details.  Will keep researching, planning and considering the various options for our three ports stops in Sri Lanka.  Glad things worked so well for your visit to Yala.  Understand, however, it can get petty busy at times there.  Other insights?

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Lisbon, NWSpain, Bordeaux/Brittany: Live/blog, June 2017 from Portugal to France along scenic Atlantic Coast on the Silver Spirit.  Now at 33,815 views.  Many pictures, details for history, food, culture, etc.:

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2511358

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, TLCOhio said:

 

YES!!  We will have a Hambantota, Sri Lanka, port stop on Sun./Feb. 18, 4 am arrive till 7 pm.  Right now for this Hambantota visit, we are leaning to do a ship's tour that includes the religious site of Kataragama, plus Velgam Vehera.  Then lunch at Jetwing Yula Hotel and finish at Yula National Park.  Bundala might be less crowded, but Yula has a wider variety of creatures, birds, etc., there.  Trade-offs to consider??

 

Appreciate your great follow-up and specific details.  Will keep researching, planning and considering the various options for our three ports stops in Sri Lanka.  Glad things worked so well for your visit to Yala.  Understand, however, it can get petty busy at times there.  Other insights?

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Lisbon, NWSpain, Bordeaux/Brittany: Live/blog, June 2017 from Portugal to France along scenic Atlantic Coast on the Silver Spirit.  Now at 33,815 views.  Many pictures, details for history, food, culture, etc.:

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2511358

We were at Yala in 2016 and I am really glad we went.  The drivers radio each other about where the animals are and they all race to get there so yes, it does get a little crowded sometimes.  something to consider is the vehicles - the ones we were in were tall had you had to climb up into it using a narrow ladder a few times.   It wasn’t easy for some with any type of mobility issue.  

 

 I’ve not been to Bundala and don’t know anything about it.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Wayfairers said:

We were at Yala in 2016 and I am really glad we went.  The drivers radio each other about where the animals are and they all race to get there so yes, it does get a little crowded sometimes.  something to consider is the vehicles - the ones we were in were tall had you had to climb up into it using a narrow ladder a few times.   It wasn’t easy for some with any type of mobility issue.

 

Great additional background information about visiting Yala National Park in Sri Lanka from our friend in Florida.  In connection with our Hambantota port stop, this is helpful.  Will share on our roll calls.  

 

Am digging deeper as to our various options for in and around Sri Lanka with our three different port stops, including maybe an overnight stay at some location on this island nation.  Have heard wonderful reports about Sri Lanka and the natural beauty that is there.  Keep it coming with this very good sharing.   

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

From the London/UK Sunday Times this weekend, they had this headline: This underrated island has stylish new hotels . . . and hardly any tourists" with this sub-headline:  "Deserted beaches and minimal tourists, plus tempting boutique openings are your excuse to go slow in the Indian Ocean this winter — with some surprising new pastimes.

 

Here are some of their reporting highlights: “Some look at Sri Lanka, see a teardrop and recall the country’s tragedies from civil war and terror attacks to the present economic crisis. That’s all accurate, of course. However, I would argue that Sri Lanka’s shape is also a pearl drop, a small but perfectly formed jewel of spun-gold beaches, pea-green tea plantations and serenity-inducing temples.”

 

This profile focuses on several new, luxury resorts and hotels that have opened recently in Sri Lanka.   This also make the point that the tourism "masses" have been slow to return here, making this location less crowded and more relaxing.  Interesting details and background to help us prepare for our February 2024 first time visiting here.  

 

Full story at:

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/the-most-stylish-new-stays-on-sri-lankas-south-coast-lx7ssv3sx

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

From late 2018, see “Holy Lands, Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Dubai, Greece, etc.”, with many visuals, details and ideas for the historic and scenic Middle East. Now at 22,064 views.  Connect at:

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2607054-livenautica-greece-holy-lands-egypt-dubai-terrypix’s/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

From the Travel Section of the London/UK Sunday Times last month, they had this headline: Sri Lanka travel guide" with this sub-headline: "When to go, what to do, and why you'll love it.

 

In this profile by Lucy Perrin, here are some of the cited highlights:Sri Lanka’s full of surprises, the first being that it’s actually smaller than Ireland. The second that it packs in so much to such modest dimensions. Safari, beach, culture — this is the island where you can dip in and out of each at whatever pace you choose. Its leopard count sits at around 700, temples number in the hundreds and you’ll lose count of the surf-ready stretches once you hit the south coast. ”

 

Here is more: "So much of the appeal of Sri Lanka lies in the people.  If you can stretch to it, hire a private driver, who’ll double up as a guide and a raconteur. They’ll take you to all the best markets and hidden botanic gardens, but it’s their stories you’ll remember as much as the big-name temples."

 

Yes, we plan to have a private guide for two of our days exploring Sri Lanka.  Looking forward to interesting stories and fun local insights.  

 

Full story at:

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/travel/destinations/asia/sri-lanka/

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Summer 2019 Calgary, Jasper/Banff National Parks, Western Canada Rocky Mountaineer rail adventure, Vancouver, sailing up to Alaska on Silver Muse, post-cruise excursion to Denali, etc.  Many visuals, Our firsts in these scenic areas!  Now at 19,988 views. Live/blog: 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2682584-live-terryohio-silver-muse-alaska-canadarockies-pix’s/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In this London/UK Sunday Times profile last month, they also had a couple of "Don't Miss" suggestions that might be good to share here.  

 

One was for Galle which they cited as "An exotic old trading port on the southern tip of the island. Here you’ll find a mix of Dutch-colonial buildings, sleek boutiques and roadside stalls piled high with rainbow fish. Walk among the walled enclave of Galle Fort, built by Dutch merchants in the 17th century, and find the old prison nestled between the ramparts and waves. You’ll spy a clock tower and a lighthouse."

 

This profile also strongly suggested: "Look out for the botanic gardens. Thanks to Sri Lanka’s temperate climate you’re rarely far from one."

 

As mentioned, we have planned for a private guide in Sri Lanka to do Galle, then overnight in that southern area of Sri Lanka.  The next day would be early for doing Yala National Park, the second-largest national park in Sri Lanka. Yala is renowned for its leopards and plethora of wildlife species, including elephants, spotted deer, sambur, wild buffaloes, sloth bears, mongoose and crocodiles.  Then later that second day, we would join up with our ship in Hambantota.

 

Anyone with experiences and suggestions for Galle, Yala, etc., in this southern region of Sri Lanka?

 

Full story at:

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/travel/destinations/asia/sri-lanka/

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Early 2020, many visuals and details from New Zealand/South Pacific in going from Auckland to French Polynesia.  This includes Bora Bora, Fiji, NZ experiences, etc:  Live/blog:

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2735732-live-terryohio-“new”-regatta-south-pacificnz-pix’s/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

From Condé Nast Traveler magazine five days ago, they had this headline: Best Places to Go in Asia in 2024" with this sub-headline:  "From Sri Lanka's shores to Uzbekistan's Silk Road, Asia offers reasons galore to pack your bags and head east.

 

Here are some of their opening summary: “It’s official, Asia is back—brighter, bolder, and more ambitious than ever. The region took longer than others to shake off pandemic-related travel restrictions and border closures, but has returned in full force, eager to remind international travelers what they’ve been missing.” 

 

They give a major focus for Sri Lanka with an opening summary of "Go for: wellness retreats, a new food festival, and a nearly 200-mile nature trail".  

 

Here are more specifics cited:  "Rising from economic uncertainty, Sri Lanka’s tourism industry is in the midst of a luxury and wellness boom—from its tea-filled highlands to its palm-fringed shores. In the south of the country, new luxury resorts continue to entice. Among them, Kayaam House and Ahu Bay by homegrown luxury travel specialist Resplendent Ceylon; a Hilton resort next to the Indian Ocean-bordering Yala National Park, one of the best places to spot Sri Lanka’s elusive leopards; and the art deco-inspired The Charleston, which opens in December in the UNESCO-listed Galle Fort."   

 

Need added, future options??: "In January, the Galle Literary Festival will return after a five-year hiatus, with appearances by literary figures such as Shehan Karunatilaka and Alexander McCall Smith, while Gourmet Galle, the country’s new food festival, will spotlight 12 chefs in 12 venues, ranging from beaches to paddy fields, over a 12-week period from January to March."  

 

What else are upcoming and important in Sri Lanka for 2024??

 

Full story at:

https://www.cntraveler.com/story/best-places-to-go-in-asia-2024?utm_source=nl&utm_brand=cnt&utm_mailing=CNT_Daily_AM_112023&utm_campaign=aud-dev&utm_medium=email&bxid=5db3f99524c17c23c34ecf3e&cndid=6657468&hasha=e1ca3019f9f535a4b98389997c63b892&hashb=7daf2541a0de702392cfe60ed513a5c2d1d23598&hashc=f541a9e649534cc2931bd57d58d8c2cac2bb8c5d298f722bad5b05cc8ad5ece2&esrc=IDCONDENAST_REGGATE&utm_term=CNT_Daily

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Canada 2022/2023: Scenic visuals, details from Canada Maritimes (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Cape Breton Island).  Plus, new from Aug. 2023, exploring historic/charming Quebec City.    Visual/Info Summaries:

www.flickr.com/photos/196555480@N08/albums

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Welcome to Cruise Critic
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...