Sea, Sand and Sri Lankan Surprises
A teardrop shaped island in the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a beautiful country of beaches and forests, temples and tea plantations, elephants, monkeys and an assortment of other wildlife. And if that wasn’t enough, it is also home to EIGHT Unesco World Heritage Sites!
If you’re visiting Sri Lanka and you want to soak up a bit of culture rather than just lounge on a beach for your visit, then it’s highly likely that you will be on some sort of organised tour, be it with a small group or a private tour. We decided that we would prefer to mix with some like-minded travellers so opted to do a small group tour consisting of us, 6 other travellers, a guide, an assistant and a driver.
Rather than jumping straight into the tour, we booked ourselves an extra day at the beginning of our holiday, just to get over the jetlag and have a bit of a chill-out before all of the action and sightseeing began. We stayed in the coastal town of Mount Lavinia, at Mount Lavinia Hotel – a British Colonial mansion and one of the oldest and most famous hotels in Sri Lanka.
I had been unwell the day before we flew to Sri Lanka, so when we arrived in the early evening, we ordered room service pizza and watched the thunderstorm from the window. The hotel had kindly provided us with a fruit plate as it was our honeymoon, so it wasn’t all unhealthy!
The next morning I was feeling a lot better and the weather also matched my mood. We pulled back the curtains to find this amazing view…
Today was going to be a beach and pool day. And the view from the pool area wasn’t bad either!
We’d also already met some of the local wildlife in the form of the random squirrels and lizards that roam the hotel grounds.
After lunch we took a walk along the beach, it was very quiet, which was lovely really. Beaches are so much prettier when they aren’t crowded with people. As we continued to walk along we were approached by a local man who was showing us how he was scooping up crabs from the sea, before throwing them back. The next thing we know is we are following him along the beach to see a turtle that had been washed ashore! Not really knowing what to expect we cautiously followed the man down the length of the beach…
Expecting to see one poor lone turtle, we were surprised to discover a little sanctuary, right there on the beach! There were a couple of other locals tending to the turtles and they were showing us the different turtles they had rescued – all different sizes! I just hope they were a legitimate sanctuary, but when you are caught by surprise it’s difficult to research into these things.
Soon after, we headed back to the hotel to sample some Sri Lankan cuisine, before an early night ready to begin our tour the next day…
Stay tuned for part two next Sunday. In the meantime you can follow my adventures on twitter