Sri Lanka is a hidden gem, floating in the Indian ocean. Found just off the coast of India, it is one of the most beautiful and truly unique countries on the planet. Sri Lanka is a paradise of wildlife, natural beauty, and vibrant culture. With a deep religious history, the country bears the marks of Buddhist, Hindu, and Muslim tradition. It also has a colonial history, overseen by Britain until the 1970s. As a result, there are hints of European influence too. If you’re planning a visit to this wonderful country, here are some of the unmissable sights.
5 Unmissable Things To Do In Sri Lanka:
- Adam’s Peak
Adam’s Peak is an enormous mountain that reaches 2,234m above the dense forest around it. It has an iconic, lonely presence against the Sri lankan scenery. However, Adam’s Peak is not just famous for its domineering presence. It has a religious significance to the Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim communities. A sacred footprint at the top of the peak is said to be Buddha’s very own foot mark. Hindus, however, believe it to be Shiva’s, while Muslims and Christians believe it is Adam’s. Whatever you choose to believe, the views are simply magnificent from up here!
The view from Adam’s Peak (credit)
- Yala National Park
There are lots of national parks in Sri lanka. Each one has its own areas of natural wonder and beauty. It’s Yala national park that makes our list though. It’s the most popular park, and the second biggest on the island. It’s also the best place to spot the local leopards. In fact, it has the largest leopard density of any area on the planet. We suggest you find a local guide, and head out on safari!
- The coastline
The Indian ocean is perhaps the most dazzling in the world. Its crystal clear oceans meet the pristine beaches on every coast of Sri Lanka. Our personal favourite is the east coast, which looks out into the Bay of Bengal. Book yourself into a luxury Sri Lanka hotel, and spend your days relaxing in the sunshine.
Sri Lanka is home to hundreds of remote, colonial towns. Each has their unique character and charm. However, there is something particularly special about Kataragama. One of the things that makes it so wonderful is the nightly temple ceremony. It instantly reminded us of Nantien Temple here in Australia. The ceremony marks the end of a pilgrimage for Buddhist, Hindus, and Muslims alike.
We couldn’t possibly reach the end of this article without mentioning the food. Sri Lanka has one of the best cuisines on the planet. Much like India, the food is based around curries and rice. But, their unique blend of spices set it apart from its Indian neighbours. Coconut is used heavily, as are lentils. Perhaps the most famous Sri Lankan export is Dhal curry, which you’ll see in many Indian restaurants. Of course, it’s nothing compared to the real thing!
As you can see, Sri Lanka is a unique and mesmerising country. There is a beautiful melting pot of cultures and religions, giving it a magical vibe. Have we missed any of Sri Lanka’s best bits?