Trip to Srilanka, (Nuwara Elliya/ Kandy)

During the school holidays, we decided to visit Sri Lank, much to the surprise of one of my  friends from the school group. " most parents in our school doesnt go to sri lanka"? I was like , whats wrong with Sri Lanka? ".   We don't visit Sri Lanka that often, the last time we went was two years ago and that was for my father's heart bypass surgery, so it wasn't really a vacation , the kids were stuck in an apart ment and kept them selves entertained indoors.

So this time , I booked a tour with Aitken Spence Travels to tour the hillside towns of Nuwara elliya and Kandy.  The tour operator was very helpful but its pricey so I would advise  parents with slightly older kids to take it so you can go on long hikes and all. Maybe next time I will just book one of the taxi services  like Kangaroo Kabs  to the hill towns, but over all it was a nice trip.

Our journey started on a  bright hot sunny day, arrived in Colombo in the afternoon and was met by our guide, who  took us on a loooooooooooong ride to Kandy, about 3-4 hour trip, stopping at a guest house restaurant for lunch along the way.  If you suffer from motion sickness, ask to have the windows open to let in fresh air instead of using the air con.

We stayed in Royal Kandyan hotel , hotels were booked by Aitken Spence. I have to say, it was the biggest room we have stayed so far.  The food was nice a few food stalls near by as well.  The next day we went to visit the elephant orphanage, where we took a ride and fed the elephants.  The spice gardens were interesting but  they try very hard to sell you ayuvedhic stuff, the tour is short but they try to lure you into the shop to buy their products.
kandy cultural show

During the evening we headed to a cultural centre ,where they had a traditional dances and acrobats and fire walking show. According to our guide, there are about 2 -3 places where they have this kind of show. We had a lovely dinner at the Empire Cafe' which is situated near the  Temple of the Tooth.
paddy fields dot around the landscape

The next day we visited a wood works studio and then headed to Perdeniya gardens. Walked around the gardens for about 2 hours and  went out and had lunch. Then headed to Nuwara elliya.
wood carving
Perdheniya gardens

Now the ride to Nuwara Elliya is about 2 hours, a very stomach churning twisting and turning ride. We stopped at a tea plantation and  learned about the process. There were so many tea plantation, you know you have arrived in nuwara elliya when you start spotting  the tea plantations and huge vegetable gardens.  I love the sight of fresh vegetables !  And its cold ! especially in the morning and evening .  And it rains alot, so December is not a good time to visit Nuwara Elliya, maybe March to July is.

We stayed at  The Royal cocoon, a lovely  hotel, with a huge garden. The boys loved exploring and running around it.  The break fast was nice, they give you a choice of English breakfast or Sri lankan.

hotel Royal Cocoon

In Nuwara elliya we went to Gregory lake, the kids and hubby took boat rides and also horse rides.

Had dinner in a very tiny restaurant called Salamiya Italian restaurant , run by a Sri Lankan Couple! delicious pizzas, calzones and pasta is served here. The place was very tiny but cozy.
pizza at Salamiya!
The last day, it was pouring rain! so our guide refused to go any where! Once the rain stop, around 9am ,four of us decided to walk, boys in their rain coats, while our guide slept in , well I assume he did as he was no where in sight. He had promised to take us to a strawberry and vegetable farm that day. So all of us were very disappointed. So headed to town, about 15 minute walk. It drizzled now and then but was a nice walk, the boys found it funny when mist came out from our mouths when we talked as it was quite chilly.

We checked out the hotel's kitchen garden the next day, the manger was a very friendly person, they had  carrots, beets, kale and brocolli growing there.

Headed back to colombo the next morning. It didnt go as planned  when it came to nuwara elliya, but it was an ok trip. For  Lunch, we stopped in Kitulgala near the river.

In Colombo we stayed in an apartment at Supun Archade Residency due to its easy access to main road , and food.   Stayed in colombo for another 5-6 days and headed home. In Colombo it was mostly shopping, although we did go to Galle Face Green to fly kites.  Food worth talking about?,  lets see,  Mexican food at Lets Talk Taco, Local fare in a more elegant dining : Palmyrah in Renuka Hotel. Cheaper local eats, but still very very delicious, at  Hotel De fayaz infront of the mosque in Wellawatte,  Kottu Roti at Mango tree in  Odel, Lamprais (Sri lankan rice parcels) in Crescat food court.

Sri Lankan fare, hopper, string hoppers, seeni sambol, pol sambol, green bean curry ....

Over all it was a nice holiday. Hope you all had a good school holidays and its back to work or school!

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