A teardrop shaped island in the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a beautiful country. It boasts 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 want to soak up a bit of culture rather than just lounge on a beach for your visit, then it’s likely that you will be on an 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.
Sea, Sand and Sri Lankan Surprises
Rather than jumping straight into the tour, we booked ourselves an extra day at the beginning of our holiday. Mainly to get over the jetlag and 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. Beaches are much prettier when they aren’t crowded with people.
As we continued our walk, we were approached by a local man. He 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. Apparently a turtle had been washed ashore! Not really knowing what to expect we cautiously followed the man down the length of the beach…
We were expecting to see one poor lone turtle but were surprised to discover a little sanctuary, right there on the beach! There were a couple of other locals tending to the turtles. They were showing us the different turtles they had rescued – all different sizes! I just hope they were a legitimate sanctuary, but when caught by surprise it’s difficult to know.
Soon after, we headed back to the hotel to sample some Sri Lankan cuisine. Followed by an early night ready to begin our tour the next day.
If you liked this you may enjoy my Sri Lankan adventure series.