Sri Lanka, an island ironically shaped like a tear drop but shines by the happy smiles of its inhabitants. The smiles which quietly disappear any anger or despair they might feel even today over the many years of acute civil violence of the country that went through after a analogously peaceful road to independence. The tourism is an important for Sri Lanka achieved ~10% of their GDP and the government plans to step up the efforts towards it is to improve the revenues from tourism. The tourism might be important today for the country but the Sri Lankan people come across as genuinely warm and friendly. For these tourists government of Sri Lanka declared to have ETA Sri Lanka visa that stands for Sri Lanka Electronic Travel Authorization visa. All tourists required to have this visa with them. This is like an entry pass to them.
- Today the country is an amazing combination of rich and multi-cultural historical heritage sites that influences its past from the Portuguese, Dutch, British rules and system. In it’s the capital city Colombo, the colonial effect is still quite strong. So you will find many historical places over there.
- The island has one of the largest numbers of world heritage centers like the Tooth Relic temple in Kandy to the caves at Dambulla and the ancient city of Sigiriya among others. The colorful hill station of Kandy which is considered today as a cultural center clearly showcases the varieties of religion practiced in the country. The tooth relic temple is just situated next to St. Paul’s church. Hindu and Buddhist temples proudly co-exist with churches and mosques. We were happy to be there on Christmas eve when the haunting melody of Holy Night’, ‘Silent Night merged beautifully with the bells in the tooth Relic temple to create a beautiful concert.
- Sri Lankan food is like a treat for the taste buds and the country is a haven for foodie lovers. The traditional food over here is very similar to the Indian cuisine with sumptuous sea food, prawn curries and the chicken and egg hoppers. Some people who look for international cuisine for them it will also not be disappointed type as the local restaurants provide plenty of choices.
- Sri Lanka also counts in the list of most child-friendly destinations. Children would love to visit the Pinnewala elephant orphanage (2 hours drive out from Colombo) which is home to about 100 of elephants. At per-determined timings, children are allowed to bathe and feed baby elephants here.
- Shopping is another activity that tourists would find hard to resist in the country. Apart from the beautiful wood carved statues of Buddha and elephants, affordable and fashionable clothes in chains such as Odel and the House of Fashion. Sri Lanka is also known for its spices and precious gems. A trip to moonstone mine is like an education as it allows ones to learn how the moonstones are mined and then made into precious stones.
So next time again when you visit to Sri Lanka, remember one thing to validate your Sri Lanka visa. If your visa is expired then update it as soon as possible.