Compiled by Monita Pesumal


This part of the hill country is some 1,430 metres above sea level. Haputale is surrounded by misty hills that are covered in lush tea plantations. You can take a leisurely walk through the evergreen tea bushes and mingle with friendly tea pluckers as they pick ‘two leaves and a bud’ to fill their baskets.

Then walk along with them and watch the day’s gatherings being weighed at a nearby tea factory. You may be able to visit the factory and witness the fascinating process of tea manufacturing as well.


Sri Lanka is blessed with many natural waterfalls. Situated five kilometres away from Badulla, the Dunhinda Falls gets its name from the Sinhala word dun, which means mist or smoke. Tons of water gush down a fall of more than 60 metres (200 feet) and collect in a serene pool below.

The falls are also known as the Bridal Falls since the shape of the cascade resembles a veil worn by a bride on her wedding day. A two kilometre trek from the main Mahiyanganaya-Badulla Road along a mountainous path will get you to the vicinity of this scenic waterfall.


Sleep in a tent, swim in the lake and dine under the stars on this outdoorsy expedition. The campsite is situated on the border of the Wilpattu National Park. Kumana, which was formerly known as Yala East National Park, is renowned for its bird sanctuary and ecotourism. Regular sightings include pelicans, painted storks, spoonbills, white ibis, herons and egrets.


The Lion Rock is a citadel on top of a huge rocky outcrop near the town of Dambulla in central Sri Lanka. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The climb up 1,200 steps to the top of this iconic rock will take anywhere from an hour to two… and the reward for the effort is an awesome panoramic view of the surrounding landscape.


Visitors describe receiving a tattoo in Galle as “a wonderful experience, hygienic and clean.” Ranked high in safety and low in price, the tattoo parlours in Galle come highly recommended because of the quality of equipment and ink that’s used.


Fresh seafood, great cocktails, friendly staff and good music! What’s not to love about such an offering? While Colombo, Mount Lavinia, Galle and Hikkaduwa boast A-list clubs and bars, Miri ssa is where the real party is!

Located four kilometres southeast of Weligama on the southern tip of the island, it’s known for its memorable sunsets and gentle inviting waves. Most bars will offer an undisturbed beachfront view of the Indian Ocean as you enjoy a chilled beer and munch on delectable lobster. In fact, the only distur bance you’ll encounter here will be the sound of the waves… and that retro DJ next door.


From November to April, Hikkaduwa’s brilliant coral reef and exotic underwater ecosystem make it one of the best loca tions for snorkelling. There are several shops on the beachfront that hire snorkelling equipment in this tourist friendly aquatic town. Alternatively, exclusive day tours complete with ins tructors can be booked at most hotels.

Hikkaduwa’s underwater ecosystem has been declared a Marine National Park and is home to over 60 species of coral, 170 species of reef fish, many species of sea turtle and other marine creatures. So yes, you’re guaranteed your money’s worth!


The palm tree rope swing at Dalawella Beach is located in front of a guesthouse named Dream Cabana in Unawatuna on the southern coast of the island. The team at Dream Cabana built the swing as something fun for them to do – and thanks to social media, it went viral!


From jumbo prawns and coconut crab curry, to deep-fried calamari and cheesy baked lobster, this thriving marine hamlet will fulfil your gourmet seafood fantasies along with the catch of the day on a platter.

Although resorts in the township and environs are a dime a dozen, you’re better off choosing one of the many restaurants or bistros located along both sides of the main beach road (Lewis Place) for an authentic dining experience.


This wetland (formerly known as the Thalawathugoda Wetland Park or Thalawathugoda Biodiversity Study Park) located next to the Diyawanna Oya on the Japan-Sri Lanka Friendship Road is an ideal place to birdwatch.

Covering 0.2 square kilometres (60 acres), this collection of waterways, canals and ponds is also the perfect place from where you can watch diverse species of butterflies, fish and insects.

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