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Ten suggestions for inexperienced tourists visiting Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is an enticing travel destination owing to its remarkable fusion of scenic landscapes, hospitable inhabitants, and historical significance as a former British colony. Sri Lanka has encountered a series of difficult years; therefore, 2023 is an outstanding time to travel there. The following are suggestions for inaugural tourists visiting Sri Lanka.

Anticipate progressing gradually.

Notwithstanding the advancements in infrastructure and the availability of numerous transit options, navigating Sri Lanka‘s restricted roads and engine-testing propensities can occasionally present difficulties.
Time squandering is a prevalent occurrence in the Hill Country. An approximate velocity of 12 to 15 miles per hour can be anticipated when traversing between tea plantations via train, tuk-tuk, or transport. A number of visitors will discover that car rental with a driver is an outstanding alternative. Seerendipity Tours can facilitate connections with knowledgeable local guides in Sri Lanka who will take care of every aspect of your travel plans, including accommodations, private transportation, and excursions.

Relax as opposed to becoming insane.

Outside of Colombo and a limited number of coastal locales, hostels in the dorm form are scarce. Guesthouses run by families are considerably more prevalent. This facilitates encounters with locals but adds complexity to the process of making acquaintances while travelling alone.
Additionally, Sri Lanka is a popular honeymoon destination, drawing a considerable number of couples there. Beach bars can be found on the east coast of Arugam Bay and the west coast of Hikkaduwa. However, these establishments have a relaxed atmosphere and many close during the off-season, which will disappoint tourists seeking a nightlife comparable to that of Bangkok’s Khao San Road.

Sri Lanka is an ideal destination for individuals seeking solace from their hectic lives, contemplation, or the pursuit of enlightenment via Ayurvedic therapies, yoga, and meditation, on account of the country’s steadfast adherence to ancient Ayurvedic treatment traditions. Retreats and other bliss-inducing activities are prevalent there.

Reward oneself

There are numerous brand-new, upscale hotels and resorts in Sri Lanka where additional Sri Lankan rupees can be spent. On the island, well-known international brands include Aman, whereas Shangri-La manages two hotels, located in Hambantota and Colombo. Small, locally owned luxury hotel companies, conversely, ought to be circumvented.

To circumvent traffic, proceed north.

The Northern Province, which was once off-limits, is an excellent location for an off-the-beaten-path experience in Sri Lanka. It was among the last locations on the island to recommence tourist activities subsequent to its occupation as a stronghold by the Tamil Tigers. It has not experienced the same influx of foreign visitors or succumbed to the same proliferation of hotels, resorts, and other establishments.
Travel north in search of secluded temples, desolate golden beaches, and historical places. Seerendipity Tours’ “Jaffna and Western Sri Lanka” sample itinerary serves as an exemplary depiction of the various attractions and activities available in Jaffna and its environs. The best part is that it is completely customizable to your preferences, just like the other sample Sri Lanka itineraries in our collection. Simply stating “Modify this Sri Lanka itinerary” will initiate direct communication with Seerendipity staff.

Consider the cuisine.

During your visit, indulge in the delectable cuisine that Sri Lanka has to offer. However, as you may have anticipated, determining where and when to search for the positive may prove to be more challenging. Bowl-shaped hoppers, savoury rice flour crêpes that are typically only available in the late afternoon or early morning, are the main attraction. Lunch consists of rice and curries, while kottu rotty, which consists of minced flatbread stir-fried with vegetables and eggs, is exclusively served in the evening.
Individuals with prior knowledge of Asia will be taken aback to learn that the number of street food purveyors is relatively low. Rather, modest guesthouse kitchens serve as some of the finest dining establishments.

Upon arrival in Colombo, spend the night (see below) and embark on a small-group culinary excursion to sample the city’s renowned fare. A knowledgeable local guide will elucidate on the diverse array of choices and flavours.

In light of Colombo

Colombo has evolved into more than just a tourist destination, as its jazz clubs, boutique boutiques, rooftop bars, and restaurants have garnered international recognition. Sri Lanka is an exceptional destination for settling in and experiencing local culture, notwithstanding the abundance of tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.
Families are observed kite-flying on Galle Face Green at twilight. Subsequently, visit R Premadasa Stadium to support the national cricket team, or Pettah Market to observe a grandmother haggling with vendors while adorned in vibrant saris. Explore markets while riding tuktuks, and pause to sample delectable street cuisine. In addition to revealing the city, a private tour of Colombo’s hidden treasures will also educate you on the culture and way of life of Sri Lanka.

Make arrangements in consideration of the seasons.

It is worth noting that while the monsoon precipitation may not prevent one from venturing out, each season can offer a unique assortment of experiences. For instance, to ascend Adam’s Peak, plan your journey from December to May. This period is also an ideal time to visit Sri Lanka, as it is bustling with Buddhist pilgrims.

Although the tea businesses lining the path will be closed during these months, it is still possible to reach the summit. In addition, rather than hundreds of enthusiastic locals, you will be climbing the mountain with a limited number of outsiders; consequently, much of the camaraderie and exuberance that once characterised climbers has dissipated.

Engaging in activities

In addition to its renowned stupas, tea plantations, and pristine beaches, Sri Lanka is home to an abundance of intriguing activities. Explore the Kelaniya Ganga in Kitulgala by whitewater rafting, the Knuckles Mountain Range by mountaineering, or Arugam Bay by surfing. Additionally, cycling excursions are growing in popularity. Perhaps you could construct your own Sri Lanka adventure excursion by combining them all. Trekking, hiking, and cycling are all incorporated into Frank’s exemplar adventure itinerary. Or, for a day trip, explore the rural regions of Colombo by bicycle.

Optimise the utilisation of your monetary assets.

In contrast to escalating costs, Sri Lanka continues to be a reasonably priced tourist destination in the eyes of the West. It is possible to shop with confidence for commonplace items such as toothpaste and tea in major metropolitan areas, without incurring excessive costs. In corner stores located in smaller cities, the price is visibly indicated on the packaging alongside the initials “Rs.” (which stand for rupees).

Recognise cultural norms and practises

Despite being separated by only 18 miles at their closest point by sea, Sri Lanka and India are worlds apart. When compared to its neighbour, Sri Lanka seems to operate at a significantly sluggish rate of progress. Consequently, Sri Lanka emerges as the most optimal substitute for individuals who are both captivated by India and apprehensive of it.
Although it is generally recommended and even required to cover oneself in places of worship, shorts and vests are not likely to garner significant attention from the natives, as they seldom direct their gaze towards foreign visitors.

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