Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sri Lankan memories. Goodbye paradise, hello London.


It's over. Nearly a month in Sri Lanka and it feels like only a few days. Now I'm back in London. Freezing. When did winter arrive?!

We said goodbye to two of our best friends yesterday morning. They're the reason we had this amazing trip as they're recent expats in Colombo. Goodbyes are always hard. Leaving them over 8,000 km away and knowing we won't see them for months was particularly hard. R and S - thank you for everything and experiencing paradise was even more perfect because we were together. Here's to our next trip. The Maldives is near Sri Lanka isn't it...?

We were all set to enjoy our final day and then I had to spoil it by getting food poisoning...and spent a pleasant day staring at the ceiling. Drama. 

As there's not much to update on from our last day I thought I'd share my 10 favourite moments and some tips for visiting Sri Lanka. 

Top moments

1. Arriving in Colombo and experiencing an overload of the senses. Driving down bustling streets trying to take it all in: palm trees, tuk-tuks, a monk walking, 101 things happening at once, monkeys, street vendors, an old man in a sarong, banana trees, a Buddha monument and 102 horns beeping at the same time.

2. Gazing at the stunning Lion Mountain sprouting out of the jungle in Sigirya and better yet climbing it (on my second attempt).

3. Cooking breakfast Sri Lankan style - egg hoppers.

4. Experiencing paradise on earth in Unawatuna.

5. Finding the perfect cup of tea in the Hill Country. And the perfect (cooler) weather.

6. Wandering the markets and supermarkets reeling at the many different kinds of spices, fruits, vegetables and rice (and doing my best to taste them all).

7. Discovering the wonder of nature in a spice and herbal garden.

8. Eating. Eating. And Eating. Like this. And then eating some more.

9. Waking up to sunrises like this.

10. And watching the day end with sunsets like this. Then sitting under the stars, feet in sand, cocktail in hand. Sigh.

Top tips 

(Ahem, tongue-in-cheek tips, please consult a guide book for more comprehensive travelling tips...)

1. Always cross the road in Colombo with a Sri Lankan, unless you're feeling very brave. They know how to avoid maniac tuk-tuks (autorickshaws) which screech to a halt just in front of you. 

2. Carpe curry. Seize the curry. So many types to taste; mango, mushroom, cashew nut, banana blossoms, mutton, chicken, biryani...and the spice goes on...

3. Caveat curry. Beware the curry. Always ask 'Is it spicy?'. Then double check. Perhaps triple check. Trust me on this one.

4. When taking a tuk-tuk, close your eyes and hang on. That's all you need do. And you'll have a story to tell afterwards.

5. Remember Sri Lanka is very VERY hot...prepare to sweat. Especially if you're Irish. Lots.

I loved Sri Lanka, I'll definitely be back and we're missing our friends already.

Now it's home to reality and wrapping up in winter clothes. Brr.

But I must admit, London, I missed you. Ah c'mere and give me a little hug. London sweet London.

What happens in Sri Lanka stays in Sri Lanka...but you can read about it here:


  1. Nice pics L.! You made me want to go ot S.L :-)

  2. You can plan it for your next hol....after New York! Think I saw a tweet about you going there :-)