Category: Day Tours

History

Sri Lanka’s history dates back to more than 2500 years. These ancient cities and their glorious remains that are temples, fortresses, statues and irrigation feats still have the ability to make people, especially tourists gaze at them with reverence. Ancient sites are considered to be archeological gold mines
because they are evidence to a very rich civilization. Most of the places are declared as World Heritage Sites by the UNESCO. The oldest and the largest ancient city is Anuradhapura.

SriLanka is a country with a unique and proud historical records. Which by comparison cannot be second to any contempery civilization that extend in the world. For the purpose of publication the history of srilanka spanning a period of over twenty five centuries.

Pre History

Evidence of human colonization in sri lanka appears at the site of balangoda man arrived on the island about 35000 years ago.

Pre Anuradhapura period (543 – 377 BCE )

The pail chronicles the Depavamsa, Thupavamsa, and the Chulavamsa as well as a large collection of stone inscriptions. The Mahavamsa written around 400 CE by the monk mahanama, using Deepavamsa and other written sources available to him. The mahavamsa account the period prior to Asoka’s
coronation proper historical records begin with arrival of Vijaya and 70000 followers according to the Mahavamsa.

Vijaya landed on Sri Lanka near mahathiththa and the name of island Thambepenni, The present day Sinhalese are mixture of the induaryans and indigenous.

Anuradhapura Period

In the early ages of Anuradhapura kingdom the economy was based on farming. The king was ruler of the country and responsible for the law, the army and being protector of faith.in that period ruled from king Pandukabaya 337 BC to king Kashshapa VII loss AD in the period they build lot of temples, lakes, any so many cultural places.

Polonnaruwa Period

The kingdom of polonnaruwa was the second major Sinhalese kingdom of Sri Lanka. The kingdom of polonnaruwa came in to being after the Anuradhapura kingdom. Period of rule from king Wijayabahu – I Loss AD to Mahakalinga. A prince of Kalinga 1232 AD.

Dambadeniya Period

Period of ruled from king vijayabahu III 1232 AD to Parakramabahu III 1293 AD.

Kurunegala Period

Period of ruled from king Buvanekabahu II 1293 AD to king Vijayabahu V 1341 AD.

Gampola Period

Period of ruled from king buvanekabahu IV 1341 to king Buvanekabahu V 1408 AD.

Kotte Period

Period of ruled from king Vijayabahu 1408 AD to King Don Juwan Dharmapala 1597 AD.

Kandy Period

Period of ruled from Senasammatha Vijayaparakramabahu 1469 AD to Sri Wikramarajasingha 1815 AD

After that period of kingdom stated, the Portuguese period the Dutch period and there after British period.

Independence Period

In February 1948 sri lanka, or Ceylon as it was still know, became and independent member of Birtish common wealth.

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Nature

Sri Lanka is enriched with incredible beauty gifted by mother nature with numerous natural resources such as waterfalls,rivers, lakes, green mountains and wild life.

Waterfalls

Sri Lanka is blessed with over 100 waterfalls.
Bambarakanda is taller than the famous Diyaluma falls which is only 220 metres but thought to be the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka.

The Baker’s Falls in the Horton Plains gets its water from the Belihul Oya. It is close to World’s End. The icy waters glisten in the sunshine amid a backdrop of mountain terrain and deep valleys and the patna through which you traverse give it contrast. If you are lucky you may see the rare black monkey and rhododendrons in bloom. Discovered by Sir Samuel Baker and a good stopover on your way to the World’s end.

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Bambarakanda Ella

Sri Lanka is blessed with over one hundred waterfalls. The tallest is the Bambarakande Falls which cascades down 263 metres like liquid light. It is only four miles away from the Colombo-Bandarawela road in a forest glade, but it is not visited often, though well worth the trip.

Bambarakanda is taller than the famous Diyaluma falls which is only 220 metres but thought to be the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka. The Diyaluma or Diya Haluma collects its water from the Poonagala Oya in the vicinity of Koslanda and Wellawaya. Located six miles from Koslanda and 13 miles from Wellawaya, its waters originate from the Mahakande Pass in Koslanda. You can see this waterfall if you stop a while on your way to Haputale and detour.

Due to the geological formation of Sri Lanka, the central highlands are surrounded by peneplains, plateaus and valleys. Rainfall sends a large volume of water hurtling down the precipitous edges of the highland mass.

The up thrust millions of years ago has caused several peneplains to form, the highest being well over 6000 ft. It is in this area that the water is collected when there are showers and flows down along tributaries down the mountain slopes.

Bopath Ella

“Bopath Ella”, not like many of the others of her kind , finds her abode in a busy surrounding in the village called Devipahala off Kuruwita on A4 High Level road close to Ratnapura. Being within 3 hours driving distance from the capital, it thus claims the honour of having the highest turn-over of enthusiasts seeking respite from the grimy and monotonous town life .Nevertheless, it has the notorious reputatio of devouring its visitors off and on who , attracted by the surroundings ,indulge in over-enjoyment .Here again, the falls take the shape of a “Bo” leave ( “Bo” tree is a sacred tree here ) from which the name has been derived.

Devon Waterfalls

With a peculiar appearance imparted to it by its formation in three continuous cascades this waterfall christened “Devon Falls” pours down to the valley beneath not a long distance away from its brother the “St. Clairs”. On the main road opposite to it there is situated a modern tea centre finding its abode thankful to this “Veil ( Bridal ) of the Vale ( i.e. valley )”. Driving from Colombo, the capital, via Avissawella one suddenly catches this unearthly sight which is to be soon enhanced by the grandeur of the “St. Clairs”. This beauty too is endangered by the above-mentioned power plant beast

Diyaluma Waterfall

With an appearance and location which often make people believe that it is the highest waterfall in the isle, this lanky “Diyaluma” waterfall pours its way down and flows towards Kirindi Oya underneath a bridge on the highway from Beragala to Wellawaya. The extent of water spilt downwards is so great
during the rainy season that it makes amends for the monotonously undisturbed water trunk falling from head to foot with no intermediate cascade whatsoever. Its geographical location by one of the mostly used Highways spanning the Hill Country to the Plains speaks for its reputation not only here but in other parts of the world as well.

Dunhinda Waterfall

“Dunhinda” is one of the mostly spoken-about waterfalls in Sri Lanka. Although she couldn’t come even close to the highest waterfalls of the planet in height she rivals many of them when it comes to the natural beauty that it bestows on the environment . Situated about 2 km distance from the main road which runs to Taldena from the remote city Badulla in the Uva Province this is easily accesible and frequently visited by local and foreign visitors. On the way can be seen the “Kuda Dunhinda” ( “Kuda” means small in Sinhala ) which is the prologue to its mighty brother . In native tongue “Dun” means mist or vapour which is the ideal explanation for a waterfall creating wreathes of mist on its way down.

Kirindi Oya Waterfall

The Kirindi Oya Falls is the third largest waterfall. It cascades down 200 metres. It can be seen when you go from Ratnapura to Pelmadulla and get on to the Katupitiya road which goes by a tea factory. You have to go along a foot path just beyond the tea factory and if you do not mind the wild grass and reeds, you could go quite close to the waterfall.

Mapanana Ella

Mapanana Falls” found at the foot of the “Sri Pada”( Adam’s Peak ) range are one of the tallest and the most beautifully formed falls meandering its way down from a height about 150 meteres. Carrying cooly and crystal clear waters from the springs where they are born in the Peak Wilderness Sanctuary this fall is difficult to get near to due to many reasons,the hazard of sudden gushes of water during especially, rainy seasons,being one of them.During my visit there in ’95 I also was prevented from wading upstream
for the same reason by the villagers.The photo here appeared on The Lankadeepa,95-8-20 Sunday, by Kamilus Wanigasuriya.

Olu Ella

This is situated in a remote village called Malalpola off Yatiyantota on the High Level road from Avissawella to Nuwara-Eliya. Dancing its way through several cascades before finding its way under a wooden bridge along the road, this waterfall adds to the rustic scenery of the village . Not very famous
among the people here, it still attracts a considerable number of people going there informed by locals. During the periods when the foliage gets covered by lush greenary and the air gets cooly one is greeted with a momentary drizzle when traversing the wooden planks of the bridge.

Ravana Ella

Situated in the Dry zone off Welimada this beautiful water fall is a continuous stream of life to the villagers. It provides much needed water for the cultivation of vegetables, their main income. The life- line role of this tiny, yet beautiful waterfall is seen when we first arrived the village. While the
surrounding mountains were dirty and dry this particular mountain was greenish and cultivated. According to villages the water of this stream has to be protected from smugglers day and night and for that they have ” a shift duty”. It is 40m (131ft) tall and in the Uduhawara village

Rikille Ella

Bulathkohupitiya is a small town hidden among the mountains of the hill country. From there , a motorable road leads through hair pin bends to Dedugala. On the way can be seen this waterfall in a very serene landscape . Where it originates and whither it flows , unknown to me. In Sinhalese Rikilla
means branch of a tree , and Rikille stands for its possesive noun.

St.Clair’s Waterfall

These majestic “St.Clairs” falls are close to the main road from Avissawella to Nuwara-Eliya and can well be seen from the Main Line rail track close to Talawakelle. It falls down in two cascades and is an inviting site for regular bathers because it is fairly easily reacheable from a footpath ( actually there are many ) downhill through greeny tea shrubbery. Named after a British colonist, these are one of two waterfalls threatened by a proposed hydro-power scheme in the area.

Wadakada Waterfall

Wadakada is a typical rural Sri Lankan village encompassed between two highways which connect Colombo to the city of Kurunegala. There lived a poet called Wadakada Navaratne who shared the unspoilt beauty and calmness in his village with many a stranger through his ever-remembered poems which begins to linger and echo in one’s ears as one steps into this far away place.

The Lovers Leap Ella

The 100 feet high Lovers Leap begins its journey as fountain at the Southern slope of Sri lankas highest mountain Pidurutalagala. The falls can be seen from the town Nuwara Eliya.

Galagediyana Ella Falls

This water fall is very close to Colombo can be reached off Dedigama – where the famous Kotavehera Dagaba. If travel from Kotavehera to Stripura (where palace queens were hidden in times of war)- a cave temple with a magnificent stone arch- and then alone the same road to Kegalle.

Ramboda Ella Falls

A gigantic water fall having three parts and very close to the 53km post along the above A-5 trunk road. The first part is above the road in the jungle (100m), second part is close to the road (3m) and the third part (100m)is below the road. Traveler should descends to the “Ramboda basin”, where the famous “Ramboda Inn” situated from where he can see the whole fall. When we were there the upper part was covered with a fog and what you see in the picture was the third part. If look carefully, one can notice a bus on the bridge over the A- 5 road at the top of the photo.

Poona Oya Ella Falls

In the same location as above (at Ramboda Inn), there are about 5 waterfalls descending down to make the Kothmale river. One of them is “Poona Oya Ella Falls” which is actually a twin fall. It is about 100m (330ft) and both falls about 4m away from each other. This is seen from A-5 road at 53km post and there is an observation site there.

Hellboda Ella Falls -Ramboda

This is by the side of A-5 trunk route Kandy to N’Eliya east of Pussellawa. It is about 60m (197ft) when both parts taken together and a very attractive yet simple water fall. It is by the side of the road and one can almost descends to the foot of the fall.

Bomburu Ella

Bomburu Ella waterfall is a very beautiful waterfall in Sri Lanka and which is at Uva – Paranagama provincial division of Badulla District of Sri Lanka. Bomburu Ella waterfall is at a very beautiful place in Sri Lanka. Welimada and Uva Paranagama are very famous to potatoes cultivation. You can visit Bomburu waterfall and visit potatoes lands and vegetable lands in Welimada. Bomburu Ella is not at closed to main road. It’s situated at long distance from main road and you have to go on a foot to Bomburu waterfall. This waterfall is situated at between and border of Nuwaraeliya and Badulla districts. There is a valley at Nuwaraeliya district and water comes to falls. Some low rainy seasons people close the water way and that time low amount of water comes to water fall. December January and April May seasons are very suitable to visit this waterfall. Water is come to Bomburu waterfall from Nuwaraeliya Gregory Lake and many places and after Bomburu Ella this water come to Uma River. Then via Badulu Oya and move those water to Randenigala Rentable and Victoria valleys. How to get there You can reach Bomburu Ella from Perawella via Uduhawara via Welimada, Nuwaraeliya. Or Welimada via Bandarawela.

Dhuwili Waterfalls

Dhuwili Ella of Balangoda Sri Lanka is a very high and a beautiful waterfall in Sri Lanka. Dhuwili Ella is at Kalthota which is Hambegambuwa road of Balangoda. There are about 27 kilometeres from Balangoda town and you have to walk 3kms from Kalthota. Dhuwili Ella is situated at below of Samanala Wawa Wally. Samanala Wawa means Wally which is like a butterfly.

Main entrance of Samanala Wewa is at Belihuloya and Pambahinna. Samanala Wawa is situated at 8km Distance from Sabaragamuwa University. University of Sabaragamuwa Sri Lanka is also at Kumbalgama road which is direct to Samanala Wawa. Dhuwili Ella waterfall is very beautiful and large amount of water falls down from it every second. There fore not suitable to bath at this  notification No. 2140/17 Dated 10 Sep 2019.

Rivers

The rich network of rivers in Sri Lanka make the island an oasis at any time of year, naturally watering the paradise garden with its splendid heritage. The highest concentration of rivers and lakes is found in the south-west of the country, making it possibly the most fertile area in Sri Lanka.

Mahaweli River , the longest river in the island and 330km in length originates from the Hatton mountain range and gently flows across Kandy and right to the east where it eventually passes through Trincomalee, one of the finest natural harbours in the world. The river, having been dammed in several
places, is not only a major source of water for irrigation purposes, but also plays an important role in the hydro-electric power generation of Sri Lanka. Mahaweli River has thus played an important role in the lives of the people of the country providing them with the basics even for sustenance.

The Kelani River Sri Lanka originating at the foot of the Sri Pada mountain range is one of the most important water sources for Colombo. Flowing along through the hill country and eventually ending at the ocean in Colombo, the river changes during the monsoon period and dry season. The Kelani River Sri
Lanka is an integral part of the lives of those living close-by as it is used for irrigation, hydropower generation, transportation and fisheries among others.

Some of the other major rivers in Sri Lanka among the 103 dispersed island-wide are the Aravi Aru, the second longest river in the country, the Malwathu Oya, the Walawe River and the Kalu River.

Lakes

Most of the reservoirs called tanks dot the north central plains, storing water during the dry season. Some of the tanks were constructed as many as 2000 years ago.these water bodies are laden with a whole lot of natural beauty and lush greenery around. These are Some famous tanks in this mesmerizing
island.

Gregory lake

Gregory Lake is one of the most ancient lakes in Sri Lanka. It was created by the British Governor, Sir William Gregory, during the British colonialism era in the year 1873. The purpose of creating the lake was to provide electricity. When the lake came into formation, it was mainly utilized for the purpose of
leisure and recreation by the Britishers. During that time, it was one of the most prominent attractions in the region. In recent times, the lake has got a facelift by the Sri Lankan government along with the hilly district of Nuwara Eliya. With such renovations coming into the scene, the Gregory Lake has been converted into a lake park where one can enjoy a plethora of recreational activities such as normal boat rides, swan-shaped paddle boats, pony rides along the shore, water walking balls, watersports such as
jetski and windsurfing.

Bolgoda lake

On the list of lakes in Sri Lanka is the largest freshwater lake in Sri Lanka known as Bolgoda Lake. It is also the largest natural lake in Sri Lanka. The lake covers two-thirds of Kalutara district and is also a major part of Dehiwala-Mount Lavinia, a suburb in Colombo, Sri Lanka. In the old times, the lake was used for transportation of people and goods from the upper stream of Kalu Ganga. It used to be the hunting ground of the Britishers during the colonial era. While you are here at the lake, seep in its rich
history and also enjoy a plethora of water activities like Kayaking, Sailing, Yachting, Canoeing, Jet Skiing, and Water Skiing. Go for a relaxing boat ride here and enjoy the natural setting of this picturesque lake.

Sembuwatta lake

One of the most beautiful lakes in Sri Lanka, Sembuwatta Lake is a famous tourist attraction in Sri Lanka. A man-made lake, it was created from natural spring water. There is a natural swimming pool right alongside the lake. The water body is around 9 meters (30 feet) to 12 meters (39 feet) deep. The lake
belongs to the Elkaduwa Plantations. It is used to generate electricity for the nearby villages. The tourists and locals visit this place to enjoy the beauty of the place and soak in the view of the lush greenery around.

Kandalama Reservoir

Amongst the most beautiful lakes in Sri Lanka is the Kandalama Reservoir. It is also known by the nameof Kandalama Lake. This is a man-made lake/reservoir that was created with the construction of the 21 meters (69 feet) high and 1,600 meters (5,200 feet) wide Kandalama Dam. The water from this lake is used for irrigation purposes in the surrounding regions. The tributaries of Kala Wewa – the Mirisgoniya River were dissected to have the dam built over them for the lake to take birth. There is also a catchment area nearby. Due to the beautiful surroundings of the lake comprising of lush green foliage and the year-round water availability at the lake, the place is a prominent tourist attraction in Sri Lanka.

Senanikulam lake

Counted as one of the most beautiful lakes in Sri Lanka, Semanikulam Lake is a haven of natural wonders and panoramic views. The lake is known for its majestic sunsets and a whole lot of greenery around. You can visit this place on your vacation to Sri Lanka and enjoy your time with your friends and family. Gi for a boat ride, jog or run around the lake and soak in the natural beauty.

Kala wewa

Kala Wewa Lake and Reservoir is the biggest lake in Sri Lanka. The lake has a rich history – it was built by King Datusena in the year 307 B.C. Having a capacity of 123 million cubic meters, it serves the nearby areas for irrigation purposes. The lake has a famous Buddha statue nearby that is quite famous amongst the tourists and locals alike. Head here for some moments of recluse and quiet on your vacation to Sri Lanka.

Kandy lake

Kandy Lake in Sri Lanka is one of the most prominent tourist attractions in the entire country. Also known as Kiri Muhuda or the Sea of Milk, it is a beautiful artificial lake. The lake was built in the year 1807 next to the Temple of the Tooth by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe. The lake has reduced in size over the years and has come into protection. This is the reason why fishing has been banned in this lake. The place is a great spot for a casual stroll or jog. There is a shady path that surrounds the lake. Here, you can catch a great view of the hills and towns around.

Beira lake

of the most ancient lakes in Sri Lanka, Beira Lake is located right in the center of Colombo in Sri Lanka. The area of the lake used to be about 1.65 km2 (0.64 sq mi) of land around 100 years ago. Due to the constructions nearby and other reasons amalgamating together, the area of the lake has reduced to
around 0.65 km2 (0.25 sq mi). One can go boating on this lake and enjoy running and jogging at the track surrounding the lake.

Mountains

There are numerous mountains in Sri Lanka that not only takes away the breath of travelers but also satiate the thirst of adventure amidst the thrill seekers

Sri Pada or Adam’s Peak

Sri Pada of Sri Lanka is well known for its Buddhist pilgrimage. Sri Pada or the sacred footprint is a 1.8- meter rock formation near the summit of Adam’s Peak which is at an altitude of 2,243 meters. This mountain is the junction of a bunch of religions such as Buddhism: who consider it to be the footprint of
Buddha, Hindus believe it to be the footprint of Lord Shiva. In Islam and Christianity, this footprint is considered to be that of Adam or Saint Thomas. Adam’s Peak is one of the most beautiful mountains in Sri Lanka and is located in the Ratnapura district on the edge of the central massif. The surrounding group of mountains in this region is known as Wilderness of the Peak and is extensive when compared to the bulk of other mountains.

Kirigalpotta

The second highest mountain of Sri Lanka, Kirigalpotta has an altitude of 2,388 meters above the mean sea level. This is also the highest mountain of Sri Lanka which is easily accessible to the common civilians of the nation. Pidurutalagala, on the other hand, is a region of the military base and thus, is not accessible to the public. The peak of Kirigalpotta is located in the Nuwara Eliya district. A 7-kilometer hiking trail which is not very well known leads you to the mountain summit through the Horton Plains National Park. The trail, however, is a splendid adventure for hiking mountains in Sri Lanka.

Piduruthalagala

Pidurutalagala is the only ultra prominent peak of this island country. This also happens to be one of the only 1,515 ultra prominent peaks all across the globe. This mountain has a forest reserve in the surrounding location which was subjected to severe damage, five years ago in a forest fire. The fire had caused a loss of more than three acres of forest land. However, with time and the help of the people of Sri Lanka, a lot of the damage has been repaired and is still improving every day. The mountain summit of Pidurutalagala acts as a base of the communications array of the Sri Lankan government and armed
forces. It is marked as an ultra-high-security zone due to the confidentiality of the activities in the region. These are the best mountains in Sri Lanka in contrast to the lush green surroundings, consisting of forests with a large variety of rare and endemic species of plants and animals. The mountain summit gives one the chance to have a glance at the beautiful country of Sri Lanka and is a perfect panorama.

Thotupala

Thotupola mountain in Sri Lanka is one of the highest-ranking mountains amongst the top ten of the list. This takes around a half day of the journey for climbing and sightseeing. The flora of this region is a contrast to the rest of the mountains of the country. The top of the mountain is the best catch you can
get if you have a thing for mountainous greenery. The Thotupola Kanda is one of Sri Lanka’s most famous and beautiful mountains and also happens to have a historical connection to King Ravana Era. Rare species of birds are frequent in this part of the country, they include the likes of Dull Blue Flycatcher, Sri Lanka White Thrush and many more. The rare Horned Lizard is very common around the Horton Plains and you might even catch a glance of a leopard if you’re lucky enough.

Gombaniya

The Gombaniya range is located in the Matale district of the country. The range consists of five peaks resembling the knuckles of a closed fist and thus, are also known as the Knuckles range. The highest point of this range is at an altitude of 6,248 feet above the mean sea level. The five peaks of the
Gombaniya range from West to Southeast are Kirigalpotta, Gombaniya, Knuckles, Koboneelagala and Dotulugala: also known as the Mini Alps. This mountain range has a span of approximately 20,000 hectares of land. It houses a biodiversity of indigenous flora and fauna of the Indian subcontinent, making it a must visit on your trip to Sri Lanka.

Not only that, Being an island, Sri Lanka is blessed with a diverse topography which has managed to attract many visitors from around the world.Sri Lanka is a tropical country so expect lots of blissful sunshine and blue skies practically year-round, except for monsoon season (summer months) when it
can get a little more humid and rainy. That being said, the weather is fairly consistent if you plan ahead, and the country offers some of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen. The central part of the southern half of the island (tea country!) tends to be cooler than the coastal regions, so pack accordingly if this is where you’re headed.

Sri Lanka Itinerary 7 Days

Sri Lanka Itinerary 14 Days

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Sri Lanka Luxury Tour

Wildlife Tour in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka History Tours

Honeymoon Tour in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Golf Tours

Hill Country Tour In Sri Lanka

Gem Tour in Sri Lanka

Family Tour in Sri Lanka

Cultural Tour in Sri Lanka

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Gems

Throughout the history, Sri Lanka has been known as a land of gems. Today Sri Lankan gems are most popular goods among the Tourists. Tourists who visit to Sri Lanka they are willing to buy Sri Lankan gems and jewelers. The main gemstone species found in Sri Lanka are Blue Sapphire, Ruby, Padparadscha, Yellow Sapphire, Asteriated Sapphires (Star Sapphires), Alexandrite, Spinel, Tourmaline, Beryl, Quartz, Moonstone etc. Sri Lanka has nearly 75-80 Colored Gemstone varieties literally making it the Treasure Island. The prominent gem mining areas in Sri Lanka are Ratnapura, Balangoda, and Elahera. The most commonly used Gemstone mining method in Sri Lanka is Pit-Head Mining and Tunneling. Surface Placer Mining and River Bed Dredging are the other methods used widely.

The history of the gems industry dates back to about 3000 years ago. According to the great Sri Lankan chronicle Mahavamsa, Ceylon was known as ‘Ratna Deepa’ in Sanskrit, meaning ‘the island of jewels’. Its soils, rich in minerals, have been yielding an amazingly continuous supply of premium quality precious and semi-precious gem stones. Ratnapura (translating to ‘city of gems’ in Sinhalese) owns a significantly wide range of gemstones, many of which are outstanding in clarity when compared to stones from other areas.Apart from producing these precious gems, the Sri Lankan gem industry has also been specializin in the process of mining, cutting and polishing for many centuries. Because Sri Lankans have an extensive knowledge on the types of gems and how they should be cut, each stone that is found and prepared for the foreign market is finely cut and polished before exported. Ceylon Moors, descendants of the Arabians are those who are largely responsible for the gem industry in Sri Lanka. This is because the Arabs undertook rich trading – the ability to speak a variety of languages and the wealth to travel across the globe in search of commercially valuable items.

After the end of the civil war nearly a decade ago, Sri Lanka has been showing excellent growth in the service, industrial and agricultural sectors. With regard to the gem industry, regulations pertaining to mining and exports of gems have relaxed, thereby resulting in growth of the industry itself.

Gem varieties available in Sri Lanka

Since the early times of gem production, some off the common gemstones produced in Ceylon are:

  • Sapphires
  • Ruby
  • Cat’s eye
  • Alexandrite
  • Garnet
  • Star sapphire
  • Zircon
  • Tourmaline
  • Spinal
  • Topaz
  • Beryl
  • Quartz
  • Moonstone
  • Serendibite
  • Ekanite

The Blue Sapphire is one of the most supreme gems that Sri Lanka is renowned for. Some of the finest blue sapphires in the world are found here, one of which was gifted to Princess Diana by Prince Charles! Being second to diamond in hardness, this premium stone is amongst the highly prized of all gems.

Did you know?

  • The world’s largest sapphire – weighing 42 pounds, was found in the gravels of Sri Lanka.
  • A British millionaire purchased from Sri Lanka the following:
    • Blue Giant, weighing 500 carats
    • Blue Belle of Asia, weighing 400 carats

Sri Lanka Itinerary 7 Days

Sri Lanka Itinerary 14 Days

Sri Lanka Itinerary 21 Days

Sri Lanka Luxury Tour

Wildlife Tour in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka History Tours

Honeymoon Tour in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Golf Tours

Hill Country Tour In Sri Lanka

Gem Tour in Sri Lanka

Family Tour in Sri Lanka

Cultural Tour in Sri Lanka

Beach Tour in Sri Lanka

Adventure Tour in Sri Lanka

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Culture

Sri Lanka is one of the few countries with a very proud and rich cultural diversity. The culture is itself very unique and thereby contributes to the Sri Lankan identity. Sri Lankan culture contains a lot of customs and rituals, which date to more than 2000 years which were handed down from generation to generation. The most prominent feature of the Sri Lankan is its colorful festivals, which is one of the main tourist attractions. Religion plays an important role in molding the Sri Lankan culture and traditions.

Sri Lankan culture if often reflected by the use of art, architecture, sculptures, and even food. Some people would say that Sri Lanka has a more conventional culture which is obviously influenced by the prominent religions prevailing the country such as Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Christianity etc. The Sri Lankan way of life is very simple and filled with humility and happiness, this is one of the reasons why the Sri Lankans have a very great sense in appreciating the simple things in life such as nature.

One of the main features of the culture is its Indian and European influence. Sri Lanka was a colony of three different countries. Between 1517 and 1638, the island was under Portuguese rule. Many words in Sinhalese sound like Portuguese words and some food, like short eats are reminiscent of that time. The Portuguese Kandyan King asked the Dutch for help at the beginning of the 1600s. The Dutch-Portuguese war raged for years, ending in a Dutch victory and subsequent takeover of part of the island. The Kandyan King kept his place in Kandy. The descendants of the Dutch settlers are called Burghers and are still a considerable group in Sri Lanka. After the disastrous Dutch take over, it was not difficult for the British to take over the island in 1796. There are many reminiscent British customs still in practice, like
high tea. Sri Lanka became independent in 1815. Being colonized by three different cultures has influenced the culture of Sri Lanka to the point that all three are still present in the country today. Not only that, most of the time Sri Lankan kings married Indian princesses they incorporated Indian culture
into ours but still preserving the unique Sri Lankan identity. Hospitality is also one of the noteworthy characteristics of the culture, making Sri Lankans one of the friendly nations in the world.

Cultural triangle of Sri Lanka

“Cultural Triangle” is an area spanning across several cities in the center of Sri Lanka and includes 6 out of 8 of Sri Lanka’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites including the ancient capital of Anuradhapura, the ruins of Polonnaruwa, the rock citadel of Sigiriya and the sacred city of Kandy.

Anuradhapura

Anuradhapura was the first ancient capital of Sri Lanka and still it’s the sacred Buddhist religious center of Sri Lanka. Buddhists and pilgrims visit Anuradhapura to worship the well preserved temples including Sri Maha Bodhi, Lovamahapaya, Abhayagiri Stupa, Thuparamaya, Ruwanweli Stupa, Isurumuniya, Mihinthale, Elephant pond, Twin ponds, Aukana Buddha statue etc. Anradhapura was named as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1982, because of its historical value.

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Polonnaruwa

This city is the second most ancient city of Sri Lanka. It was the second capital of Sri Lanka. Polonnaruwa became a UNESCO world heritage site in 1982 because of its well-known attractions incliding the Statue of King Parakramabahu,Polonnaruwa Vatadage, Rankothvehera, Gal Viharaya and Statues, Sathmahal Prasada.

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Kandy

Kandy was the last kingdom of Sri Lanka and now it’s mainly known as the home of Temple of the Scared Tooth Relic.National Meuseum, Royal Botanical Garden,Knuckles Mountain Range,Udawaththa kele,Kandy Lake are the main attractions in Kandy. Kandy became a UNESCO world heritage site in 1988.

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Sri lankan Cusine

The most essential part (for all the food –lovers) that dominates our culture is our mouth-watering, exotic food. The recipes might have a bit of Indian influence but very unique in its own way.

Food in Daily Life

Sri Lanka’s main meal is a large serving of rice accompanied by up to twelve different side dishes of vegetables, egg, meat, or fish stewed together with peppers, spices, and often coconut milk. This rice and curry meal is traditionally eaten at midday, although it may also be served in the evening. The traditional morning and evening meals are usually composed of a traditional starchy staple, such asstring hoppers(fresh rice noodles),hoppers(cup-shaped pancakes),roti(coconut flat bread), orthosai(sourdough pancakes), served with a sambol(a mixture of hot peppers and other vegetables, served cool) and one or two curries. A variety of snacks and beverages are also eaten periodically throughout the day. Strong, sweat tea, usually with milk, is drunk alone or following a small serving of finger food or sweets, especially at mid- morning and late afternoon. Curd,a yogurt made from the milk of water buffaloes or cows, is often served as a dessert with palm syrup or sugar. A rich variety of fruits is available year-round.

Sri Lankan Martial Arts

There are two styles of martial arts native to Sri Lanka, these are Cheena di and Angampora. Chenna Di is more popular of the two whereas Angampora shows a decline in students each year due to the fact of the length of time to master the art.

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Sri Lankan handicrafts

If you are looking to grab some authentic souvenirs and learning about the traditional Sri Lankan industries, take a look at some of the most traditional arts and crafts including masks, sculptures and potteries of Sri Lanka. If you hope to travel around the ruin cities including Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa & Kandy, you will see to large number of paintings and sculptures on display. Some earliest works that they have carved on rocks. Sigiriya, Dambulla temple, Kandy temple of the tooth relic are very famous for frescoes and paintings. Mostly Sri Lankan arts are originated from religious beliefs. Sri Lankan traditional clay pottery and wooden handicrafts also remarkable. These industries can be mostly found in hill country. Traditional masks can be found adorning the walls of local houses. But these handmade masks commonly found in cultural festivals like Kandy Esela  perahera festival on dancers with their colorful facades, odd shapes and intriguing history.  They also make excellent souvenirs. There’s a well-known city for wooden mask making industry, called Ambalangoda which belongs to south western costal belt in Sri Lanka.

Handloom and batik

Batik industry is originated in Indonesia and introduced to Sri Lanka by Dutch in 19th century. Now it has developed in to a unique form of textile art exclusive to the country. Simply, it’s a method of decorating a piece of cloth by creating pattern on it with wax and coloring rest of the piece of cloth, creating a vibrant mosaic with colored and uncolored areas. These batik clothes, Sarees, tablecloths, wall pictures, beach clothes, pure cotton and silk, men’s and ladies’ wear and bed covers are popular as a reminder of a visit to Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan handloom industry also centuries old. When Indian Prince, Vijaya arrived on the island, Kuveni from the indigenous race of Yaksha was spinning yarn. Clearly, Sri Lanka’s handloom weavers carry a rich legacy of culture and hereditary skills. A range of designs and colors, individual and
innovative designs, craftsmanship, color combination and patterns are handed down from generation to generation. This handloom clothes, sarees, wall pictures, men’s and lady’s wear, bags, purses, table cloths are usually used because of their nature inspired forms and mosaic patterns.

Architecture

The architecture of Sri Lanka displays a rich variety of architectural forms and styles. Buddhism had a significant influence on Sri Lankan architecture. However techniques and styles developed in Europe and Asia have also played a major role in the architecture of Sri Lanka.

Dances

Concept of dancing in Sri Lanka originated in fear of natural power which people regarded as the supernatural building. Dance was then initiated in Sri Lanka during the 4th century B.C for the purpose of expelling natural disasters, sickness and so on. At the end of Polonnaruwa period (15th century A.D.), South Indian influence came into Sri Lanka and was adopted in Sri Lanka folk dancing. Nowadays, there are three principal dancing forms that can be seen in Sri Lanka.

kandyan dancing

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Kandyan dance describes the scenes of Ramayana drama or stories of kings and heroes and each movement of a dancer is exactly vivid, imitates the movement of animals such as peacock, elephant which are supernatural animals in Sri Lanka. The dancers ‘costumes are striking; male dancers dress a skirt- like a garment with their naked chest with silver regalia and their head wears a spectacular headgear like a peacock and takes drum GataBeraya which is used especially for Kandyan dance.

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Low country dance

When performing the Low Country Dance, the dancer wears masks to describe different creatures such as demons, birds, reptiles, etc. to show the killing by the Gurula of Cobra. Besides, the dance is also performed as a ritual ceremony to turn out evil spirits and a method of psychiatric treatment that is the reason why Low country dance is called devil dance.

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Sabaragamu dance

The dances are usually performed in Ratnapura, relating to the worshipping of God Saman much revered by local people. According to the legend, the origins of the Kandiyan dance lie in an exorcism ritual known as the Kohomba Kankariya, which was originally performed by Indian shamans who came to the island of Sri Lanka.

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Cultural festivals in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka, the tiny teardrop shaped island is home to four main religions Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Christianity. Because of that Sri Lankan people celebrate many festivals.

Sinhala and Tamil Hindu New Year celebration

The Sinhala and Tamil New Year marks the beginning of the Lunar year. It usually takes place on 13th and 14th in April. Festivities are colorful and fun all around the island. Just like the Poya holidays, all formal or government businesses close and the island takes on a relaxed festive state.

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Vesak poyaday celebration (Buddhist)

Vesak is the  Poya festival  that falls on the full moon of the month of May. According to the Buddhist moon calendar, it’s the first full moon of the New Year. Vesak Poya is a triple celebration of Buddha. It is on this day that Buddha was born, found enlightenment, then many years later passed away. Festivities are charm but colorful. People hang lanterns and some of the temples including Temple of the Tooth Relic are specially decorated.

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Kandy Esela Perahera Festival

Esala Perahera is considered one of the most beautiful of such processions in all of Asia and is held yearly to beseech blessings of the gods to obtain rain for the cultivation of crops and to enrich the lands of the kingdom. Procession itself signifies rain and different items in the procession subsequently brings life to the phenomena of rain, creating a spectacle of highest quality and grandeur to the onlookers. During the Kandy Esala Perahera, the sacred tooth relic is carried around the streets of Kandy city to honor it as well as its four guardians, Gods Natha, Vishnu, Kataragama and Goddess Pattini with dancers, flag bearers, elephants and all. Plan your visit to Sri Lanka during the Perahera season to witness this amazing festival of the sacred tooth, which attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.

Poson Festival

Another grand Buddhist festival which is held in month of June every year. Buddhists celebrate the arrival of Buddhism to Sri Lanka in this Poson full moon Poya day. Festivities are focusing the Mihintale rock outcrop which is believed to be the first place that Buddhist monk “Mahinda” sermonizing dhamma to king  ” Devanampiyatissa”. People arrange arms giving stalls to celebrate this poson festival.

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Deepawali/ Dewali (Hindu)

Deepavali is the Hindu festival of lights, it is the celebration of Lord Rama’s defeat of Ravana, symbolizing the defeat of light over darkness. Sri Lankan Hindu people celebrate this festival in November in every year by lightning lamps, wearing new clothes, giving each other gifts and sweets.

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Ramadan and Eid (Islam)

Ramadan is the month long Muslim festival of cleansing and fasting. The festival begins at the first sighting of the new moon.

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Christmas (Christian)

Even though only about 20% or less of the population in Sri Lanka is Christian, Christmas is still a big celebration on the island.Most of the stalls, offices and houses are colourfuly decorated with Christmas trees, lights and garlands when the month of december begins every year.

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Beaches

Sri Lanka is a tropical island found in the deep blue waters of the Indian Ocean. The country is endowed with over a thousand miles of beautiful golden beaches that are fringed with coconut palms making it the ideal destination for a beach holiday. A large percentage of luxurious resorts and villas as well as budget hotels are located along the coastal areas to offer tourists some of the best beach holidays in Sri Lanka. The main attraction for tourists and locals are undoubtedly the beaches but some places like Galle on the South coast consists of historical heritage which is an added
advantage to a sun and sand holiday. The drive along the west and south-west coast also offers interesting stopovers such as batik factories or turtle hatcheries, or activities like paying homage at a local temple, sampling local fruits from roadside vendors and getting first-hand knowledge on the art of
toddy making.

There are many areas around the island that you can explore and enjoy various activities while beach holidays in Sri Lanka boast to be the best. The western and southern coastal beaches begins from Negombo, 37 km north of Colombo and curves south along the coastline for 273 km up to Hambantota. This is definitely the better developed of the two circuits in the island and currently accounts for most of the hotels and resorts. The South of Colombo which is also called the ”Gold Coast” is bursting with action with resorts stretching from Mt. Lavinia (a suburb of Colombo) and continuing along the towns of Wadduwa, Kalutara, Beruwala, Bentota, Induruwa, Kosgoda, Ahungalla, Hikkaduwa, Galle, Unawatuna, Koggala, Weligama, Mirissa,
Dondra, Dickwella, Tangalle and finally Hambantota. The southern beaches are sandier than the western ones and do not shelve deeply into the sea.

The eastern and northern coastal beaches stretches north in a gentle arc from Arugam Bay up to Kuchchaveli approximately 275 km along the east coast. Pristine beaches, wide stretches of sand and what seems like miles of clear and shallow water, pretty bays and coves, deep natural harbours, still lagoons and underwater coral gardens will always take your breath away. The best beaches along the east coast include Nilaveli, Kuchchaveli, Marble Bay, Sweat Bay and the Dead Man’s Cove with its magnificent harbour, towards the north of Trincomalee. The southern section of the east coast includes the peaceful and beautiful beaches of Passikudah, Kalkudah and Arugam Bay.

Unawatuna Beach for Tranquil Blue Waters

A significant source of tourist attraction is the Unawatuna beach. The beach is a beautifully stretched region of sand-covered soil that with its exotic perspective and exceptional atmosphere can increase the expectations of any holiday. Corals are essentially aquatic invertebrates found in a number of
indistinguishable polyps in colonies. One of this beach’s stuff that gives it the grip over the others is the corals that are considered and examined while snorkeling. One of tourists ‘primary preferences is to appreciate the marine life and closely examine it, and if you’re one of them, the Unawatuna beach
may just be the place to spend your vacation.

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Benthota Beach for Beaches and Mangroves

If you want to spend your holidays and have a calm and natural treat, without bars and restaurants, this is the most refreshing and relaxing place.
The 7-8 kilometer long Bentota Beach is truly a sign of peace, tranquility and cleanliness. One of its greatest points is its quiet environment, which many individuals believe runs the beach’s natural and relaxing atmosphere. Everyone has plenty of space to settle in completely and fully enjoy the sun bath.

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Mirissa Beach for Whale Watching

Mirissa and its magnificent sandy, palm-fringed beach is perhaps Sri Lanka’s best-known southern coast resort. In addition to having the region’s largest fishing port, well-known for its tuna, mullet, snapper and butterfish, it is also one of the major whale watching facilities. The calm feeling of tropical-island peace and loneliness of the beach is due to the reality that all hotels, guest houses and other tourist amenities are well laid back and mostly out of sight. So chilled drinks at sunset and moonlight walks in the surf are a specific delight for tourists as they wind down from the rigors of enjoying all of Marissa’s generous and big-hearted hospitality.

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Dickwella Beach for Romantic Staycations

Dickwella Beach is protected by reefs and sand bars, with picturesque views of small canoes reflecting the fishing culture of Sri Lanka, Dickwella beach is one of the safest and beautiful places for swimming and surfing and is one of the destinations of the insta famous beach rope swings.

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Weligama Beach for Instagrammable Beaches

Weligama is a wonderful place to learn to surf, about a two-kilometer stretch of shallow sandy beach, translated as a sandy village. One of the best locations to find a link to the ocean in southern Sri Lanka and catch your first wave. Get there for first light and surf until sunrise, usually it’s still until 8 a.m. so a nice time to exercise on uncontroversial waves.

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Galle Beach For Postcard-Perfect Colonial Architecture

Galle is a historical city which is named as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1988. Galle Fort, which is also acclaimed as the largest remaining fortification in Asia, fortified by every European nation that set foot on the Island such was the importance of this port to their spice trade. Site and sounds of Galle ncludes, National Maritime museum, St.Mary’s cathedral and the Dutch fort built in 1663.while getting a great historical experience, you can enjoy the Galle beach.

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Induruwa Beach for Scenic Beaches and Villages

Nestled along a small ravine in the west coast, was once a sleepy fishing village today however it has turned into a major hotspot for tourists looking for white sandy beaches with perfect surf to relax in.

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Hikkaduwa Beach For Untouched Nature’s Bounty

Hikkaduwa is the name of a tiny city situated about 98 km north of Colombo on the south coast of Sri Lanka. It is well known for the Hikkaduwa beach, one of Sri Lanka’s best surfing sites, and the Hikkaduwa Coral Sanctuary, a few meters from the shore. In the months from November to March when waves increase, you can enjoy surfing to the fullest. In these months, many visitors have suggested surfing.

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Koggala for Rare Turtle Species

Stilt Fishing is one of Sri Lanka’s most exciting traditional fishing techniques. Records show that it came into being shortly after World War II. This mode of fishing was used more commonly all along the shoreline until the 2004 tsunami, which led such operations to cease momentarily until the last years.
Fishermen’s beautiful sight perched branched poles as they skillfully fish during dawn, noon, and dusk; now frequently found along the southern shoreline in cities like Koggala, Midigama, and Ahangama.

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Negombo for Peace and Relaxation

Negombo Beach: Negombo also has a colorful array of coral reefs and a 50 year old shipwreck that serves as an artificial reef for many varieties of fish. Catamaran ride can be arranged at most hotels in Negombo. Negombo, a tourism hot spot is ideal for a variety of water sports such as diving and wind
surfing.

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Arugam Bay Beach for Surfing and Fishing

Arugam Bay is the most popular surf spot and is also the only international surf competition venue in Sri Lanka. It is also rated as one of the top ten surf destinations in the world. It has also hosted most of the in ternational surfing competitions in Sri Lanka since 2004.

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Tangalle Beach For Weekend Getaways

Tangalle is a large city ruled by an urban council in Hambantota District, Southern Province, Sri Lanka. It is one of the southern province’s biggest cities. It is 195 kilometers south of Colombo and 35 kilometers east of Matara. Here is the gateway to southeastern Sri Lanka’s wide open spaces and wide open beaches. Before Hambantota, it is the last town of any size and has some charm of the old world. But its star attractions are the beaches.

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Hiriketiya Beach – Tangalla

A tiny beach with excellent surfing, plenty of greenery and some fine dining and hanging establishments. Hiriketiya is one of those sleepy beaches in the South that is no longer so sleepy after being found by backpackers. Locals can kick themselves for not discovering it sooner, but in addition to swimming,
tourism also provides restaurants and hotels and stuff to do.

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Goyambokka Beach – Tangalla

The beach offers enough privacy by coconut and palm trees and plenty of natural shade. Occasionally strolling, with crabs and cracked coconut shells scattered around, the beach also offers food and drink choices in tiny cafes— you can pick up a free umbrella or deck chair by buying a snack.

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Kalpitiya Beach For Meeting Dolphins

Kalpitiya is in the north east of Sri Lanka, 35km north of Puttalam and about three hours’ drive from the airport. This city is very famous for Whale and dolphin watching and even kite surfing. The area is fringed with mangroves, rich in birdlife and one of the few places in Sri Lanka to see the dugong.

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Pasikudah Beach For White Sand Beaches

Pasikuda, meaning “green-algae-bay” is situated in Eastern seaboard of Sri Lanka between Kalkuda and the Indian Ocean, approximately 35 kilometers from Batticaloa Town. It’s a wonderful and silent beach which has a stunning view too.visitors can have a safest sea bath since it’s really like a pond.

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These are some other attractive beaches,

  • Uppuveli  – For Delish Lankan Cuisine
  • Trincomalee  – For Stunning Temples
  • Polhena   – For Endless Water Sports
  • Mount Lavinia  – For Diving And Snorkeling
  • Talalla South  – For Swimming In Clear Waters
  • Matara  – For Ancient Forts
  • Nilaveli  – For A Fine Stretch Of Sand
  • Wijaya – For A Stretch Of White Sand
  • Pigeon Island – For The Best Coral Reefs
  • Rekawa – For The Sea Turtles  
  • Pottuvil – For A Stunning Time
  • Casuarina Beach  – An Unexplored Beach
  • Beruwala Beach  – The Golden Beach
  • Batticaloa Beach – One Of The Cleanest Sri Lankan Beaches

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Tea and Spices

Tea

Ceylon tea has become a household name and a trademark name for high- quality tea. Even after independence in 1970, the demand for Ceylon tea continued to grow, until the island became the largest exporter of tea. Ceylon tea is famed for its outstanding quality and superior, unparalleled taste and variety of tea. According to the 2017 EU Surveillance Report, Ceylon tea was marked as the cleanest tea in the market with regard to the pesticides and other chemicals usually found in tea. In 1997 and 1999, ISO declared Ceylon tea as the cleanest as well when it came to pesticide residue. The
island was also the first to achieve the status of being “Ozone Friendly Tea” by the Montreal Protocol Treaty.

Tea Types

There are five areas where tea is grown in Sri Lanka, each yielding a different flavour and taste of tea. Tea originated from the Camellia Sinensis plant, but it’s the weather, soil and elevation of the tea plantation that brings about this change in flavour and taste.

Ceylon black tea

Is world renowned and the most popular in the market.Tea leaves are plucked by the skilled hands of tea-puckers, where only two leaves and the bud is nipped off. Once the leaves are collected, they are then left to wither, before being rolled, fermented, dried and finally sifted. Once the sifting process is complete, they are separated into different grades of tea. Each grade of black tea has different colours and intensities.

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Green tea

Is the second most popular type of Ceylon tea. Once plucked from the same Camellia Sinensis bush, the leaves are withered, heated and then rolled, before being dried and sifted. To make green tea, the process of fermentation is skipped.

White tea

Is a special and exclusive type of Ceylon tea and quite possibly the most expensive due to its rarity. White tea is often referred to as Silver Tips. To make white tea, only the buds from the tea plant are plucked at dawn. They are hand rolled individually and not fermented. White tea is light in color and subtle when compared to Ceylon black tea, and is packed with more antioxidants than the other two types of tea, thus making it one of the healthiest beverages.

Spices

Asia, most specifically Southeast Asia, has always been quite famous for its spicy foods. The region’s cooks have dabbled with the science of spices for millennia and are very experienced and used to cooking using spices. The fact that most spices are grown around the tropical regions of Southeast Asia
played a large part in this. Sri Lanka has been the center of the spice trade throughout history.

In history, Sri Lanka was named as Tabrobane, Serendib and Ceylon, because it was famous for its high quality spices and it has been maintained relations with the Greeks, Romans and Arabs through its spice trade. The Portuguese, Dutch and English found this country attractive because of its high quality spices and ivory during the colonization in Asia.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka has a micro climates and soil types for which are suitable for these spices.

These are some main spices that Sri Lanka cultivates.

Pepper

Pepper, commonly known as the “King of spices” and it accounts for occupies largest percentage in the international spice trade. It is most widely used as a chilly replacement all over the world. Black pepper of commerce is the mature dried berries of the woody perennial evergreen climbing vine, Piper nigrum. Pepper is cultivated over an area of 32,800 ha of Sri Lanka and Matale, Kandy, Kegalle, Kurunegala and Nuwara Eliya are accounted as major districts of cultivation.
It can be grown either as a mono crop or as a mixed crop in the coconut and tea plantations using live and dead standards as support. Pepper is an ideal crop for home gardens where it can be trained on the existing tree species as well.
Sri Lankan black pepper has higher pipevine content which conduces to fetch a premium price in international spice trade.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a spice obtained from the inner bark of several tree species from the genus Cinnamomum. Cinnamon is used mainly as an aromatic condiment and flavoring additive in a wide variety of cuisines, sweet and savory dishes, breakfast cereals, snack foods, tea and traditional foods. Sri Lanka is very
famous in all over the world for producing high quality cinnamon since the colonial periods of Portuguese, Dutch and English.

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Cardamom

Cardamom is used to spice both sweet and savory dishes. It is widely employed in Indian, Middle Eastern, Arabic, and Swedish cuisine.  Cardamom is found in the  garam masala  spice mixture that seasons meat and vegetable dishes, and in hot beverages such as masala chai and Turkish coffee.

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Clove

Cloves are the flower buds of the clove tree, an evergreen also known as Syzygium aromaticum. Cloves contain fiber, vitamins, and minerals, so using whole or ground cloves to add flavor to your food can provide some important nutrients. Sri Lanka produce cloves and export.

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Curry leaves

Curry leaf is an important leafy vegetable and the leaves are widely used in Sri Lankan cookery for flavoring foodstuffs. Curry leaves also have some medicinal benefits. Curry leaves contain high amounts of vitamin A, which is beneficial for the eyesight.

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Turmeric

Organic Turmeric is an herbaceous perennial plant native to Sri Lanka as well as Southern Asia which grows up into a height of 90-180cm. It really is developed mainly for the root beginnings which are useful for food preparation, for medication and as a dye. Also has some health benefits. It might help avoid prostate cancer, prevent the growth of existing prostate cancer as well as eliminate cancer cells. Lemongrass and citronella Citronella is a grass native to India and Sri Lanka. The long, fragrant leaves are narrow, linear, and stiff. The essential oil is extracted from plants grown in Sri Lanka.

Nutmeg and Mace

Nutmeg and mace are two distinctly separate spices, derived from the same plant. In Sri Lanka there are no special varieties of nutmeg. However, as usual method of propagation is by seeds, and these seeds should be taken from selected mother trees, for high yields, large nuts and heavy mace.

Vanilla 

Vanilla is a flavoring derived from orchids of the genus vanilla. In Sri Lanka, central hill countryside gives good weather (Wet weather condition) condition to grow the vanilla. The most popular and growing areas are Kandy, Nuwara Eliya, Matale, and Kegalle.

Ginger 

Ginger is a flowering plant that originated from China. Ginger can be used fresh, dried, powdered, or as an oil or juice, and is sometimes added to processed foods and cosmetics. It is a very common ingredient in recipes. Though the cultivation of ginger has widely spread throughout Sri Lanka, the
main growing areas are still found in the wet zones. These are the districts of Kegalle, Colombo, Kandy, Kurungala, and Gampaha. During the past years, the total area of growth of this plant has been over 6000 hectares.

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Wild life

Sri Lanka is second to none in terms of its biodiversity and can be considered the best for big game safaris outside the African continent. As bold a statement as that may be, Sri Lanka’s wildlife credentials speak for itself. Sri Lanka’s Big Five – leopard, elephant, sloth bear, blue whale, and sperm whale – are known as the country’s great wildlife attractions.

These species are just some of the country’s plethora of wild species of fauna. It is also renowned as a birder’s paradise with an array of endemic, migratory, and resident avifauna found in its 70 Important Bird Areas strewn across its diverse landscape. Sri Lanka is also famous for its abundance of exotic flora.


Amongst its many wildlife attractions, none have garnered such awe as those pertaining to the largest land mammal in the world – the elephant. Sri Lanka is home to the largest seasonally recurring concentration of wild elephants found anywhere in the world. This phenomenon known simply as The Gathering takes place in the country’s Minneriya National Park which is renowned the world over for being one of the best locations to spot elephant herds and observe their behavior. Herds as large as 400 elephants have been recorded here in the past. Lonely Planet listed this occurrence as one of the Top Ten Wildlife Spectacles in the world. Sri Lankan elephants can also be spotted in several of the country’s 26 national parks including the Udawalawe National Park which is the only place in the world that guarantees an elephant sighting on each visit.


Sri Lanka’s wildlife crown jewel is the Sri Lankan leopard. Yala National Park is celebrated as the best place on Earth to see leopards as its leopard density is unmatched. Block 1 has a leopard for every square kilometer and these usually reclusive beasts are often spotted in these parts. Apart from the leopard, Sri Lanka is also home to other wildcats including jungle cats, civet cats, and rusty-spotted cats that can be found in Sri Lanka’s wilds.
The sloth bear is somewhat more elusive and its dwindling numbers have meant that spotting them in the wild is a rarity. However, in places such as Wasgamuwa National Park, Wilpattu National Park, and Yala, visitors have been able to catch a glimpse of these magnificent bears, especially during the Palu Season during which these marvellous mammals can be seen climbing the palu trees to gorge themselves on their favourite fruity snacks.
The island is also considered the best place in the world to spot the largest animal that has ever lived on earth – the blue whale. The coastlines of Mirissa and Trincomalee offer the best locations for viewing these magnificent beasts while Kalpitiya is known as one of the world’s top ten best sites to catch a glimpse of the amazing sperm whale – the biggest toothed whale in the world. Meanwhile, Mirissa additionally offers visitors the best chance at seeing both these magnificent mammals of the ocean on the same tour.


Sri Lanka is also an amazing place to visit for those interested in birding. It has dozens of bird sanctuaries and Important Bird Areas where an eye-catching array of avifauna can be viewed. The Kumana and Bundala National Parks are birding hotspots where almost every species of bird recorded in Sri Lanka can be seen. The Sinharaja Bird Wave is also a well-known attraction in Sri Lanka, providing visitors with the largest and longest studied bird waves on the island.


The wildlife of Sri Lanka is one of the country’s defining attractions and few countries can rival Sri Lankan wildlife and its combination of big game safari animals, species densities, and its tourism infrastructure. It is well and truly the ultimate safari island.

These are the most attractive national parks in Sri Lanka.

MINNERIYA NATIONAL PARK

Minneriya National Park, Sitting in the center of the cultural triangle, Minneriya is a nice solution to the busier parks in the south and in a day between visiting the ancient towns, it is simple to weave here. The dry season is the best time to visit the 8,890-hectare park, preferably from June to September, when the old tank, the lake that dominates the region, dries out and the grasses and shoots move through. During this period you can see herds of feeding and washing up to 150 elephants, as well as toque macaques and sambar deer. Cormorants and painted storks are among the hungry bird flocks. Minneriya, nearest to the ancient town of Polonnaruwa by vehicle, has been upgraded from a nature reserve to a national park due to the increasing amount of visitors coming to see the elephants.

KAUDULLA NATIONAL PARK

Kaudulla National Park is a Sri Lankan national park situated 197 kilometers (122 mi) from Colombo. It was designated as a national park as the 15th such area on the island on April 1, 2002. Like Minneriya, Kaudulla provides a great opportunity for elephants to get near and personal. Up to 250 elephants are in the park in October, including juvenile male herds. The best time to visit is January to March and May to June, less reliably. Sri Lankan elephants migrate to the Minneriya reservoir for drinking and feeding during the drought period. The elephants migrate to the Kaudulla tank around the month of September in search of more water and food.

YALA NATIONAL PARK

Yala National Park, bordering the Indian Ocean, is Sri Lanka’s most visited and second biggest national park. The park is made up of five blocks, two of which are now accessible to the public and adjacent parks as well. The blocks have individual names for the adjacent region such as Ruhuna National Park (Block 1), and Kumana National Park or’ Yala East.’ It is located in the country’s southeastern region and is located in the southern province and province of Uva. The park includes 979 km2 (378 sq mi) and is situated approximately 300 km (190 mi) from Colombo. In 1900, Yala was designated as a wildlife sanctuary and was one of the first two national parks in Sri Lanka, along with Wilpattu, which was established in 1938.
The park is best known for its wildlife diversity. It is essential to preserve Sri Lankan elephants, Sri Lankan leopards, Sri Lankan Bear and aquatic birds and has one of the world’s largest leopard densities. Foreigners, particularly Europeans, make up 30% of the total number of tourists. Block I is the primary visiting region. However, Block III (primary gate in the Galge region on Buttala-Kataragama Road) and the adjacent Kumana Park or ‘ Yala East ‘ (primary gate in Okanda, not far from Pottuvil on the east coast) are also becoming famous on their own.

KUMANA NATIONAL PARK

Sri Lanka Kumana National Park is known for its fauna, especially its big flocks of migratory waterfowl and wading birds. The park is located on the southern shore of Sri Lanka 391 kilometers (243 mi) southwest of Colombo. Kumana is adjacent to Yala National Park. Kumana was previously known as the National Park of Yala East. Kumana Bird Sanctuary is included in the Kumana National Park, proclaimed in 1938. Kumana is one of Sri Lanka’s largest nesting and breeding grounds for birds. In the National Park, 255 species of birds were registered. Ten thousand birds are migrating to the Kumana swamp region from April to July. Inhabitants of reproduction are rare species such as black-necked stork, smaller adjutant, Eurasian spoonbill, and large thick-knee. Together with waterfowl, there are waders belonging to the Scolopacidae and Charadriidae families. Pintail snipes are migrating from Siberia to 11,000 kilometers (6,800 mi) flying 9,000 kilometers (5,600 mi).

WILPATTU NATIONAL PARK

Wilpattu National Park (Willu-pattu; Lakes Land) is a park on Sri Lanka’s island. The distinctive characteristic of this park is the existence of “Willus” (Natural Lakes)-natural water basins or depressions filled with rainwater. Located in Sri Lanka’s lowland dry area on the northwest coast. The park is 30 km south of Anuradhapura, 26 km south of Puttalam (about 180 km north of Colombo). The park ranges from 0 to 152 meters above sea level and is 1,317 square kilometers (131, 693 hectares). There are nearly 60 lakes (Willu) and tanks spread all over Wilpattu. Wilpattu is one of Sri Lanka’s biggest and oldest national parks. Wilpattu is one of the world-renowned top national parks for its population of leopards (Panthera pardus kotiya). The Wilderness & Wildlife Conservation Trust performed a remote camera study in Wilpattu from July to October 2015. A sample of forty-nine individual leopards in the surveyed area was photo-captured and the core area density was between Block I of Yala National Park and National Park of Horton Plains.

WASGAMUWA NATIONAL PARK

Wasgamuwa National Park is a Sri Lankan natural park located in the districts of Matale and Polonnaruwa. The park is 225 kilometers from Colombo. During the Mahaweli Development Project in 1984, it was declared to protect and make a refuge for displaced wildlife and is one of the four national parks designated under the project. It was originally designated as a nature reserve in 1938 and was then considered a strict nature reserve in the early 1970s. Wasgamuwa is one of the protected areas that can be seen in big herds of Sri Lankan elephants. It is also one of Sri Lanka’s major bird area. Wasgamuwa’s name originated from the words ‘ Walas Gamuwa. ‘ For sloth bear, “Walasa” is Sinhala, and “Gamuwa” is a wood.

BUNDALA NATIONAL PARK

Bundala National Park is a wintering ground for migratory water birds in Sri Lanka that is of international importance. Bundala harbors 197 bird species, the highlight being the larger flamingo that migrates in big flocks. In 1969, Bundala was designated a wildlife sanctuary and on 4 January 1993 was reassigned to a national park. Bundala became the first wetland in Sri Lanka to be declared a Ramsar site in 1991. In 2005 the national park was designated as a biosphere.reserve by UNESCO, the fourth biosphere reserve in Sri Lanka. The national park is located southeast of Colombo, 245 kilometers (152 mi).

HORTON PLAINS NATIONAL PARK

Horton Plains National Park is a protected area in Sri Lanka’s central highlands, covered with mountain grassland and cloud forest. This plateau is rich in biodiversity at an elevation of 2,100–2,300 meters (6,900–7,500 ft), and many species discovered here are endemic to the area. In 1988, this region was designated as a national park. Located 8 kilometers (5.0 mi) from Ohiya, 6 kilometers (3.7 mi) from the world-famous Ohiya Gap / Dondra Watch and 32 kilometers (20 mi) from Nuwara Eliya, This is also a popular tourist destination. The Horton Plains are three main Sri Lankan rivers, the Mahaweli, Kelani, and Walawe headwaters. The plains are known in Sinhala as Maha Eliya Plains. Stone tools from the culture of Balangoda were discovered here.


The vegetation of the plains is grasslands surrounded by mountain forest and contains many endemic woody plants. Sri Lankan’s large herds of sambar deer are typical mammals and the park is also an important bird area with many species not only endemic to Sri Lanka but limited to the Horton plains.
Forest dieback is one of the park’s main threats, and some studies suggest a natural phenomenon causes it. The sheer precipice of World’s End and Baker’s fall are among the tourist attractions of the park.

SINHARAJA RAIN FOREST

Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a Sri Lankan national park and a hotspot for biodiversity. It is of global importance and has been recognized by UNESCO as a Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site. Sinharaja is the last feasible region of main tropical rainforest in the country, according to the
International Union for Nature Conservation (IUCN). Over 60% of the trees are endemic, and many of them are uncommon.


The hilly virgin rainforest, part of the lowland rainforest ecoregion of Sri Lanka, was saved by its inaccessibility from the worst commercial logging and was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988. The name of the reserve translates as the Kingdom of Lion. The reserve is only 21 km (13 mi) from east to west and a maximum of 7 km (4.3 mi) from north to south, but is a treasure trove of endemic species, including trees, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals.

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Ayurveda

Sri Lankan tradition of indigenous medicine has its own teachings based on outstanding norms and laws. Cave men of that age domesticated many wild plant varieties and used them for food and medicines. Sri Lanka’s indigenous medicine has similar origins, lined to the 30,000 year old native habitants of the land.

Traditional Ayurveda medicine as it is practiced today in the country, is based on an indigenous heritage preserved over 3000 years. The royal patronage extended throughout history to the nation’s healthcare was supported by the Ayurveda practice of the time.

Historical information gathered from chronicles, inscriptions and epigraphic records indicate that the country’s royalty extended their patronage and custodianship to healthcare through traditional medicine. Throughout its course, history shows that traditional medicine has been preserved and practiced to build and maintain the health of the nation. While there is historical evidence of the existence of a national healthcare system, ancient rock inscriptions reveal the existence of a contemporary medical service in the country. These ancient hospital sites, active centuries ago have now turned into tourist attractions, symbolizing the healing and care prevalent at that time. With the royal patronage bestowed on them ayurveda physicians of ancient times enjoyed a noble position in the social hierarchy, endorsing the local belief that, “If you cannot be a king, become a healer”. This inter-relationship between ayurveda and royalty has placed ayurveda and its connections with Buddhism in the forefront of Sri Lankan life.

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