Sri Lanka Travel

First impressions of Sri Lanka

As someone who is a fan of dairy and not of curry, I was a bit worried that a trip to Sri Lanka would mean I would be hungry all the time. I’m not so adventurous when it comes to food. Well, luckily there is cheese rotti everywhere! I have also discovered kotthu (which is rotti cut up and mixed with stuff). I can now have passionfruit juice again! Their passionfruit is yellow here. Never seen that before. My favourite thing is the bread tuk tuk! They have tuk tuks that drive around playing Greensleeves and are fitted out with bread loaves, buns and pastries.

Wildlife everywhere. Birds chirping all the time (don’t really remember hearing birds in Indonesia), peacocks and monkeys in the trees, monitor lizards walking around, scorpions on the road. Have yet to see a snake, thank god. (Sri Lanka is the country with the most snake bite deaths.)

The loveliest people. Sure, in many other Asian countries, or maybe I should just say countries, the people are lovely. What stands out about Sri Lankans is their high level of English and their chattiness. They’re interested in talking to you about their country and what you’ve been doing. Most of them will say hello or good morning to you as you walk past them. The tuk tuk drivers aren’t aggressive and will leave you alone when you tell them you don’t need transport.

The internet isn’t great. As Artur needs strong internet to make Skype calls for work, we’ve had to change travel plans to take into account the internet connection. We planned to do a motorbike trip through Laos but cancelled it and opted to visit my parents in Sydney when we heard that wifi is terrible there. We also had plans to do Hong Kong and China, but ended up skipping our flight to Hong Kong as we were uncertain whether we would be able to get a good connection in China. Added to the fact that we were planning to be in China during their holidays, when transport and accommodation would likely be booked out, we decided just to head to Sri Lanka, which we heard had great 4G coverage. We had read a few blogs about the great internet through SIM, providing a strong connection in rural areas. Well, we have been unlucky. The wifi at our current guesthouse is painstakingly slow, so we bought a 28GB card (which is really 12GB off-peak, 12GB peak) through Dialog. It was only getting either H or 3G connection and was slow. We’ve switched now to Mobitel which runs a lot faster. One 12GB top up (again, 6GB off-peak, 6GB peak) cost us 999 LRP, which is about 7USD.

It doesn’t seem THAT crazy on the streets. We’d heard things prior to coming here that the traffic is crazy here, but we’ve yet to experience anything worse than what we’ve seen in Vietnam or Indonesia. However, we did arrive to Colombo on a Sunday, and headed straightaway south, so missed seeing weekday traffic in the country’s capital. The tuk tuks do drive crazy fast though.

Galle – we stayed in Fort, so it was touristy and overpriced, but still super beautiful. Same with Unawatuna, where we are now. In Galle, we saw a TON of people exercising in the morning. Nice to see that Sri Lankans keep fit. (I should probably do the same too.)



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