With beautiful beaches with lush jungle scenery, astonishing wildlife and breathtaking sacred sites, it's no surprise to learn that Sri Lanka was named Lonely Planet's top destination to visit.
It is also well known as the "Teardrop of India''. Plus Sri Lanka has been experiencing significant growth in tourism in the past decade, as many of the tourists flock to take in India's cultural and natural beauty.
The warm environment and delicious cuisine of Sri Lanka are only a few reasons to put Sri Lanka as a South Asian country on your travel itinerary. In this country, also known as “the Pearl of the Indian Ocean, You can learn about the past by exploring the ancient fortress built on a rock in Sigiriya or witnessing a huge crowd of Asian elephants in Minneriya National Park, or surfing in Arugam Bay or Hikkaduwa.
Sri Lanka is a great destination for wildlife and water sports lovers and is a paradise for those who love history. Here are some of the most significant reasons to visit the stunning island.
A tropical climate that is all year long
Sri Lanka experiences two monsoon seasons that impact different country areas in various months. That means that travellers can anticipate the sun shining on the islands at any time. The southwest monsoon occurs from May through July, leaving the north dry, and the northern monsoon runs between October and January, which makes the south ready for exploration.
Sri Lanka is blessed with authentic cuisine infused using exotic spices. The well-known rice and curry dish is a delicious and aromatic curry made of lentils and chicken, or fish curry served with vegetables and rice on the side. The locals have highly praised this fish curry. Kottu is a well-known street food item of Tamil origin, made with cut flatbreads made of roti, and typically eggs, meat, vegetables, and salna, a hot sauce served on the side. Try egg hoppers as well.
Sri Lanka has 26 national parks as well as two marine parks, as well as two marines. The most well-known Yala National Park has the highest number of leopards worldwide. It also has 215 species of bird, crocodile muggers and reptiles, and the beach that runs along the border of the park is the nesting place for five sea turtle species. Near Yala is Udawalawe National Park, home to elephant herds and rare birds, such as the hawk-eagle that changes colours and the serpent eagle.
Pigeon Island attracts many travellers seeking to discover the marine life around the island. The reef around the island comprises around 100 coral species and as many as 300 different species of coral fish, making snorkelling on these waters an amazing experience.
Sri Lanka has some of the purest coastlines in Asia that are dotted with unspoiled beaches featuring palm trees and clear waters. Visit Mirissa for a chance to enjoy the sun peacefully, while Unawatuna is more suited to people who are looking for beach celebrations. Bentota, with water activities like kitesurfing or para-cycling, is the place for those who love adrenaline.
Sri Lanka is probably the only location in the world where it is possible to see the species of the world's biggest land mammal, the elephant, and the world's largest water mammal blue whale. Five whale species, including the blue whale and the minke whale, can be regularly seen in the oceans off Kalpitiya. If you're lucky, you'll likely spot spinner dolphins as well. The most popular times when whale watching is possible in Kalpitiya are between January and March.
The abundance of Sri Lanka's wildlife and flora means that it's home to gorgeous nature trails with breathtaking views along with waterfalls as well as misty mountains that rise to the sky, hillsides covered in rice fields, tea estates as well as the occasional deer or peacock walking by your way.
For beginners, those who are just beginning, and those new to hiking, the Demodara Rail Hike in Ella is an excellent alternative. It takes hikers to the Nine Arches Bridge, a colonial-era viaduct. Experienced hikers should consider visiting Kirigalpotha and Kirigalpotha or the Knuckles Mountain Range, widely considered the most picturesque hike in the nation.
The easy access to the waves, an abundance of breaks on the sand bottom, and constant swells have made Sri Lanka a popular surfing destination. Arugam Bay is arguably the ideal spot to surf and is regularly the host of international competitions like Red Bull Ride My Wave. It is not just home to the most powerful swells and waves; the variety of possibilities means plenty of options for beginners and more experienced surfers. Other coastal towns like Hikkaduwa provide excellent surfing options too.
Buddhism has played an important part in Sri Lanka's history throughout the centuries, and many old temples are scattered across Sri Lanka. These temples of ancient worship usually have stunning designs and architecture ahead of their time. The most famous example of this is known as that of the Temple of the Tooth. However, it is also worth visiting the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi (a sacred fig tree located in Anuradhapura) and the Ruwanwelisaya stupa, which is also worth a visit.
Also known as Little England, Nuwara Eliya is a sleepy town located in the hills of the tea region in central Sri Lanka. It is awash with colonial-era homes and hotel buildings, bungalows in Tudor style, and beautifully maintained gardens and hedges; Nuwara Eliya gives the appearance of a town of a bygone age; although it is tiny, it provides lots to do and see. Visit the huge Gregory Lake for water activities and a lakeside barbecue, or you can visit Horton Plains, a beautiful grassland dotted with rolling plains, waterfalls, and the dramatic escarpment that is known as World's End.
From May through September, the reservoir's receding banks that date back to 1,700 years create the most stunning spectacle. The reservoir is home to around 400 Asian elephants that gather around the lake in Minneriya National Park to feed, socialize, socialize, and play in the lake. It is believed to be the largest grouping of this kind of elephant anywhere in the world. The park is full of things to explore with deer leopards, purple faces, and a wide variety of birds.
Cultural Triangle Cultural Triangle is a trove of old cities, relics, and temples of religion that display the early Sri Lankan civilization. The triangle comprises the area between three cities: Kandy, Anuradhapura, and Polonnaruwa. Visitors will find Sigiriya, the oldest rock fortress, and the Cave temples in Dambulla and Mihintale, the place of birth for Buddhism in Sri Lanka. There are lesser-known, however important cultural sites like Yapahuwa, a medieval citadel, which was for a brief time in the position of the capital city of Sri Lanka in the 13th century.
With its sprawling beaches, wildlife safaris, and underwater diving adventures, Sri Lanka is a fantastic holiday destination for visitors with all desires and tastes.
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