Sri Lanka General Information

Sri Lanka General Information

Amazing Sri Lanka – unforgettable about. Ceylon..! Once having been here, you will never forget these endless golden sandy beaches, cozy resort towns and friendly Sri Lankans, a hotel where warm tropical evenings recalled the romantic events of recent days: coconut palms barely rustle their dark green leaves, the ocean sparkles and sparkles in the rays of the rising sun, and you walk along the edge of the surf, leaving your footprints on the clean golden sand… Memory draws scenes of what he saw, ancient cities lost in the jungle, the ruins of palaces and temples, the last inhabitants of which, long-tailed monkeys, graciously posed in front of the camera lens. There is hardly another country in the world where, on such a small piece of land in the middle of the ocean, you can see so many extraordinary, beautiful things from the history of the people and the nature of the island…

The unique nature and climate of Sri Lanka is suitable for both beach holidays and educational tourism. Of the 130 world historical treasures under the protection of UNESCO, 7 are located on this stunning island. Here you will be amazed by the picturesque waterfalls and wide rivers, lush tropical forests, the richest exotic flora and fauna, as well as the majestic ruins of ancient cities.

Thanks to an extensive selection of sightseeing tours, you will see the first ancient capital of Sri Lanka – Anuradhapura, visit tea plantations, climb Mount Sigiriya “Fortress in the Sky”, look into the Royal Botanical Garden in Peradeniya, which is the largest in Southeast Asia, and forever keep in your heart many other unique sights of the island of Sri Lanka.

But still, the best travel option is combined tours to Sri Lanka, combining holidays on the coast with excursion programs around the country.

One of the main attractions of Sri Lanka is the majestic Mount Sigiriya. The symbol of Sri Lanka is the world-famous Ceylon tea, which is grown in valleys protected by mountains from northern winds. In Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, there are many temples, mosques and cathedrals. Somewhere in these parts, according to legend, Adam and Eve descended to Earth. In the suburbs of Kandy – Peradeniya – there is Asia’s largest botanical garden with rare palm alleys and a huge number of different types of tropical vegetation.

Diving in Sri Lanka attracts with a variety of corals, marine life with unusual names, dolphins and whale sharks, which can be seen from March to April. But the main feature of diving in Sri Lanka is visiting underwater rocks, grottoes and sunken ships. About 20 sunken ships of the 19th and 20th centuries are open for inspection at depths of 8 to 30 meters. These are tankers, steamships, bulk carriers, merchant ships and even a modern cargo ship. Many of them are well preserved, and you can even swim inside them.

Sri Lanka’s main beach resorts include Negombo, Wadduwa, Beruwala, Kalutara, Bentota, Induruwa, Ahungalla, Hikkaduwa, Galle, Unawatuna, Koggala, Weligama, Dickwella, Tangalle, Hambantota, Trincomalee, Passikuda, Unawatuna.

Official name : Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.

Capital : Colombo.

Language : English, Sinhalese and Tamil.

Geography : The country is located on an island in the Indian Ocean. The main part of the island is occupied by a plain, the height of which rarely exceeds 100 m above sea level.

Climate : Tropical, with monsoon seasons. Almost 95% of all precipitation falls during the rainy summer season from May to the end of October and mostly at night. The rest of the months are quite dry, so the period from November to the end of April is the most favorable for a holiday in Sri Lanka. The air temperature on the island practically does not change and is 28-30 ºС all year round, with the exception of mountainous areas, where it drops to +10 ºС in winter. The water temperature averages 26 °C.

Currency : Sri Lankan rupee (LKR), 1 LKR = 100 cents, 1 USD ~ 111.51 LKR. It is better to exchange currency at Colombo airport. It makes sense to keep the check received at the same time until the end of the trip: in this case, when departing from Colombo, it will be possible to convert back unspent local money at the airport bank at the purchase rate. In addition, currency can be exchanged at any hotel and bank. Banks are open from 9:00 to 13:00 from Monday to Friday. Larger hotels and shops accept international credit cards. Foreign currency imported into the country must be declared. There are ATMs in almost all cities of the country.

Customs : duty-free import of 2 bottles (0.75 l) of wine and 1.5 l of spirits, 250 ml of eau de toilette and 60 g of perfume is allowed. Duty-free importation of cigarettes is prohibited. The amount of the duty depends on the size of the products – for the import of cigarettes with a length of 72 to 84 millimeters, 6.7 LKR is charged per piece, longer than 84 millimeters – 7 LKR. The cost of importing a kilogram of tobacco or cigars is 1300 LKR. Indian and Pakistani currencies are prohibited from being imported. Import and export of the national currency is limited to 250 LKR. Expensive items and things are declared for their subsequent unhindered export. You need to have a special permit on hand for the export of ivory products, collections of coins and stamps, unprocessed precious and semi-precious stones.

Transport : traffic – left-hand side. The only forms of public transport are buses and trains. The fare on private and public buses is the same and is one of the lowest in the world. In Colombo and suburbs there are taxis with meters that can be called by phone.

Shops, shopping : shops are open on weekdays from 9:30 to 17:00, and on Saturdays from 9:30 to 13:00. Sri Lanka is known all over the world for its precious stones: sapphires, rubies, topazes, etc. It is better to buy jewelry in specialized stores, requiring an appropriate check or certificate. Ceylon tea, spices, handicrafts are also known all over the world: masks, batik, leather things. You can also buy inexpensive textiles in the cities. In the markets and in private shops it is worth haggling. It is quite possible to bring down the original price by a third.

Cuisine, restaurants : traditional Sri Lankan spices, aromatic teas of various varieties and exotic fruits are widely known. “Curry” – specially prepared meat or vegetables with spices and rice – is prepared perfectly here. In general, meat is consumed relatively little – cows are considered sacred animals. But local tea is beyond praise: fragrant, strong and inexpensive. And fish dishes and a variety of seafood simply cannot be counted.

Safety: to avoid stomach infections and poisoning, you must thoroughly wash your hands before eating, as well as vegetables and fruits bought in the market. Tap water is not recommended for drinking: it is better to use mineral water and other factory-bottled drinks. In the evenings and when visiting national parks and reserves, it is recommended to use repellents. Before making a trip to the jungle with an overnight stay, tourists should take antimalarial pills in advance. It is not customary to visit temples in shorts, in clothes with an open back and shoulders. Also, when entering the temple, you need to take off your shoes. Photography in temples can only be done with permission. And standing with your back to the Buddha statues is considered bad manners and disrespectful to local customs. We also recommend that you be vigilant about monkeys. Numerous flocks of these insolent creatures have become something of a natural disaster in Sri Lanka. They scurry around and are very intrusive. They can snatch food or things out of their hands, up to a camera or camcorder. Moreover, monkeys can climb into a hotel room and arrange a uniform mayhem there. Therefore, before leaving, always tightly close windows or special mosquito netting frames. On full moon days, alcohol is prohibited in all public places, including bars and hotel restaurants.

Sri Lanka General Information