I just returned from 10 days trip in Sri Lanka. I know it counted as short journey, but at least, I was able to see few places around Sri Lanka on this trip. I am kinda happy because I can see Sri Lanka with my own eyes, even I am now feel very tired because the road trip I had there.
I will tell you later about my journey there. In short, I visited Colombo, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya, Dambulla, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya, Galle, Unawatuna, Colombo (again), Kandy (again) then Colombo (again) to fly home. And yes, that was all happen in 10 days (yups, call me crazy!). But as my cliche reason, I always have limited time and huge determination to see many places in one’s country as long as I can.
Right now, let me give you 10 brief explanation about Sri Lanka from my experience :
1. I was full of surprised when I see Colombo, especially in Hotton Palace area, when you can see this city is really green and full with old beautiful buildings. There is an irony of pro and cons about old building becomes shopping arcade and a Dutch Hospital becomes place to hang out for young people, but I think it is so much better to renovate it without leaving it’s original interior into that kind of places, since it’s more functionable for people and with that reason, people will maintain it’s cleaness and building.
2. Sri Lanka is a tea country, for sure! This is the place when you can get a real proof how tea can influence human’s life.
3. Always, public transportation is 10 times cheaper than Tuk-tuk (or they called it as taxi!). If you are ok to take bus or train, I suggest you to go with it, since it’s always able to go somewhere by bus/train. Train ride to the hills is definitely a worth to try. If you are in Colombo, you can use TukTuk with meter, while in other town they don’t have meter.
4. If you are a forgetful person as me, be remember, ATM machines mostly available in big city such as Colombo and Kandy, in other city is very limited. And if you use card as mine with Cirrus and Maestro logo only, you need to run to Sampath Bank, Commercial Bank to get the money. The rest is mostly Visa accepted.
5. I am joining Couchsurfing – a travel community. But be careful if you ask help from Couchsurfing in Sri Lanka, since many new members which is probably have suspicious purpose in their invitation. Always talk to member who already joined since long time ago and have lots of positive reference from people around the world. I am lucky cause I meet many nice and generous with information Couchsurfing people in Colombo.
6. Men in Sri Lanka can be so aggressive. They maybe want to help you but use your guts because in the end, some of them will offer you for this and that. To avoid this, distance yourself with them, not smile too much. Travel solo in the evening for female is not recommended while in day time, it is fine.
7. If you read “Hotel” board in many places in Sri Lanka, make sure it is not hotel, but street food. Even for some hotel, they still use hotel too, or rooms, or guesthouse – yes I know, it’s a bit confusing. But if you want some traditional snack, go to that “hotel” around the street.
8. In some part of area – especially in temples, they are many monkeys. As long as you don’t bring food, you will be ok. They don’t steal your stuff as in Bali (yeah, I hate to say it, but it’s true). And black crows, you will see it a lot everywhere – they wake you up with their noisy voices, hehe.
9. If you are crazy for coffee, you better bring your own coffee. Because they only sell hot coffee and no coffee with milk or creamer. For me, it’s kind a bit of turtoring since I love cappuccino so much.
10. Food in Sri Lanka tend to be the same if you living for long time here, I think you can be bored too. They don’t have so much variety as in Indonesia, but their food is delicious. I can find “Nasi Goreng” – food from Indonesia which really delicious in Nuwara Eliya. And remember, Koutou is a food only in the evening, while some restaurant only serve rice and curry in Friday – yeah, I don’t know why 😀
So that’s all what I want to share to you at this moment. Since I am lack of sleep because of the trip, I am gonna fresh my mind before write another stories about Sri Lanka.