Sri Lanka is set to become an increasingly popular tourist destination during 2013 and well beyond due to its great value for money, and diversity of things to see and do. Listed below are 5 of the many reasons to visit Sri Lanka.
Galleface, Colombo. By Lanka Dhammika Heenpella @ Flickr
Foreigners are still a relative rarity in Sri Lanka, and visitors should not find it unusual for Sri Lankans to want to start a conversation with them, or invite them to their home for a cup of tea. Many Sri Lankans are keen to hear what visitors think about their country, and anyone on holiday in Sri Lanka will end up in at least one Sri Lankans photo album before the vacation is over!
Anyone that finds the idea of golden, sandy beaches backed by palm trees appealing will instantly fall in love with Sri Lanka. They provide the perfect setting for an idyllic holiday, and the warm waters encourage sports such as swimming, sailing and even surfing. Some of the more notable beaches include Negombo, Bentota and Hikkaduwa beaches, and a range of accommodation can be found in the more popular areas that caters to people of all budgets.
Read More: Perfect and Ideal Beach Holidays in Sri Lanka Just For You
Temples and Ruins
Sigiriya Rock – Sigiriya is an ancient rock fortress and palace ruin situated in the central Matale District of Sri Lanka, surrounded by the remains of an extensive network of gardens, reservoirs, and other structures. 300+ Meters above sea level, 1200 steps to the top! cc flickr image by Santhosh Janardhanan
Buddhist and Hindu temples abound in this beautiful country, with many such as those found at the Anuradhapura complex being over 2000 years old. This is a country rich in history, culture and heritage, and taking time to visit some of these centuries old complexes will give a greater insight into the people and the culture of Sri Lanka. As well as the aforementioned Anuradhapura complex, other recommended places to see include the Sacred City of Kandy which is a UNESCO world heritage site, and Sigiriya which is an ancient rock fortress surrounded by the remains of gardens and reservoirs.
Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage, near Kegalle, Sri Lanka – By hewy @ Flickr
Wildlife lovers will be in their element when visiting Sri Lanka. The island has a great deal of diversity ranging from elephants through to leopards, and turtles through to whales. There are a number of safari parks, protected areas and sanctuaries where these splendid animals can be see scattered throughout the country. The Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is particularly popular with both local and foreign tourists, where a magnificent spectacle is to see the elephants bathing in the Oya River.
Read more – Most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka in 2010: historical places and wildlife
No visit to Sri Lanka would be complete without trying some of the many tasty, colourful and sometimes spicy dishes on offer. From coconuts sold in roadside shacks and cut open on the spot to give a refreshing drink, through to Lamprais (rice and curries wrapped together in a banana leaf), there is something to satisfy everyone’s palate. Some of the more traditional dishes that should be tried at least once include Kiribath (milk rice), Malu Ambulthiyal (sour fish curry), Hoppers (various pancakes which may also have egg, honey or milk as part of the ingredients), and Wattalapam, a popular desert. Special mention should of course be given to tea, an important drink as well as an important export for Sri Lanka.
Read more on Best Sri Lankan Food