Sri Lanka has been known from the beginning of British colonial rule until 1972 as Ceylon. It is an island country in South Asia near South East India. A diverse and multicultural country, Sri Lanka is home to many religions, ethnic groups and languages.
Many travellers searching for places to visit in The Far East have flown over Sri Lanka on their way to other exotic countries. For many years internal strife and external natural disasters have kept Sri Lanka off the itineraries of many potential visitors. But nowadays the war is over and calm has descended. Sri Lanka has much to offer the traveller. It has over 2000 years of culture with many Unesco World Heritage Sites. The country holds a fascinating history and boasts legendary beautifully crafted temples belonging to ancient city states. There are numerous National Parks featuring elephant, leopard, buffalo and variety of birds. Then there are small harbours with fishing boats, the pristine sandy beaches all around the island. Away from the tropical lowlands and coastline, a steep interior rises up to some 6000 feet. Here in interior of the country, there lies the cultural capital Kandy. From here there is a spectacular train journey that takes the visitor through pine and eucalyptus trees and then tea plantations before finally reaching the highest town in Sri Lanka, Nuwera Eliya.
‘A Shining Pearl in the Indian Ocean’ illustrates some of the most beautifully diverse scenery that the island has to offer.
It follows a car journey that starts at the ancient site of Anuradhapura and continues to visit other ancient sites in the cultural triangle. Just west of Anuradhapura lies the country’s largest National Park, Wilpattu. On the east side of the island lies Trincomalee with its fine Portuguese fort and magnificent beaches. After visiting the hectic capital Colombo, the journey continues to the hill country, to Kandy and after a spectacular railway trip to Nuwera Eliya, the travel descends to the south to take in a visit to Yala National Park before journeying west along the coast to Galle.
Overall, this is a magnificent country to visit, steeped in history, with contrasting scenery, rising from the coastal lowlands and some great beaches and National parks to the hill country of the interior. It is easy to get around. There are hotels of all grades and the people are amazingly friendly. They also play a good game of cricket! This is a country to which you will definitely want to return.
Running time is approximately 45 minutes.
Tags: Sri Lanka