This blog post is slightly different to my previous posts… I wanted to give an explanation as to why I’ve been so quiet on my website and my social media and share what I have been up to. For the past month I have been travelling around Sri Lanka! Keep reading if you’d like to find out about my travels.

On August 7th I set off to Heathrow airport with my friend Shannon to embark on an exciting adventure! We landed in Colombo on the morning of the 8th after a full 24-hour journey, you’d expect this to be pretty hellish but luckily we were upgraded to first class on our second flight from Ukraine (it was weird but of course we didn’t question it). We stayed in Colombo for 2 nights, but there isn’t much to see here so moved on to Trincomalee, on the North East coast.

It took us 8 hours on the bus to get to Trincomalee, we arrived at 5am and had to wait at our hostel until 2pm to check in (we obviously didn’t think this through). We spent 2 days in one hostel and then moved to a Guest House along Nilaveli Beach. It was very quiet here, only 1 hostel and 1 bar with a few local restaurants, but it was nice to relax and settle for a few days.

Next stop: Dambulla. Dambulla is in the central province of Sri Lanka, we came here for one reason, and that was to climb the Sigiriya Rock. It was $25 to get in (total tourist trap) but definitely worth it! Although the view OF the rock was a lot more incredible that the views FROM the rock, I wouldn’t say its essential to climb. Especially if you’re not a fan of wasps or monkeys (there’s HUGE wasp hives all the way up and monkeys everywhere you turn).

We moved on quick from Dambulla to catch a bus to Kandy. We only stayed in Kandy for one night, but we were lucky enough to be there for ‘The Festival of the Tooth’ a Buddhist festival to celebrate the sacred tooth relic. The evening was a parade full of light and colour, fire dancers and elephants. The next morning we woke up early to catch the famous train route from Kandy down south to Ella. This was amazing!! It was a 7-hour journey, and the carriage was v crowded… but we were able to sit at the door of the carriage and dangle our feet out. The views were absolutely incredible, definitely not something to miss!

Ella was my favourite place we visited in Sri Lanka (not JUST because we share the same name). We stayed at a place called Tomorrowland, where you can sleep in tents at the top of Ella hills. There was so much to see here: The Nine Arch Bridge, Little Adams Peak, lots of waterfalls… everything was so picturesque. We also had some of the best food here (the most delicious Mexican called In Reincarnation if you’re going), the main street was touristy but not too much… It was nice to finally meet some fellow backpackers. I definitely could have stayed longer here, even if it was just to eat lots of delicious food.

From Ella we took 3 buses to get to Arugum Bay, on the East Coast. The journey was stressful to say the least… we arrived in the evening and was greeted by some lovely people at The Long Hostel. We stayed in here the longest out of everywhere we passed through, we heard it was the place to be around this time of year and that definitely was the case! Generally Arugum Bay had everything we wanted… good nightlife, good food, good beaches. We met the best bunch of people here and got to spend so much time getting to know everyone.

A group of us left Arugum Bay together to head to Weligama/Mirissa. There wasn’t much going on around here… lovely beaches, but there are lovely beaches everywhere here so it wasn’t anything special. Mirissa had slightly more to it, there were a few restaurants and bars along the beach and we had a fun night out here!

We moved on pretty quickly to Unawatuna. This is where we went jewellery CRAZY!! There’s one main shopping street here, jewellery shop after jewellery shop and I of course just couldn’t help myself. Unawatuna was probably the prettiest beach we came across, it was slightly ruined by all the restaurants and sunbeds along the sand… but the sea was crystal clear.

Our last stop before heading back to Colombo was Hikkaduwa. I was desperate to come here, purely for the Turtle Hatchery. I was soooo excited, I have wanted to go to one for so long!! There were so many cute little turtles that you were allowed to pick up and also rescued turtles that had been injured. We also went to the Tsunami Museum here, Sri Lanka was hit harder than most places by the 2004 tsunami… it was heart breaking but so interesting to learn more about it.
From Hikkaduwa we head to Negombo, a city close to Colombo airport to prepare for our journey back to the UK the next day.

So that’s it, my Sri Lankan adventure! I’ve had such an amazing summer, but now… back to reality. Bring it on!

Thanks for reading!

Check out my other blog posts here.

Ella X