As I indicated in Part 2, Part 3 will consist of elephants and areas I would have liked to have visited if I had more time. With that in mind, our journey for Part 3 begins with a van ride out of Kandy and on to Pinnawala.
Pinnawala is an Elephant orphanage located between Colombo and Kandy. About 80 elephants call Pinnawala home and it was quite surreal to see so many elephants playing around in the water. Interestingly, you can actually pay to wash (and play) with elephants. As it’s not something you can do everyday, I recommend trying this.
On a more serious note, elephant rides are offered and quite aggressively pushed. I have to admit I’ve been on an elephant ride before. However, after hearing about the damage elephant rides do to the skeletal structure of the elephant, I’ve been averse to getting back on.
With that statement, I’ll conclude with some more airport advice before I move on to places I want to visit the next time I come to Sri Lanka. Essentially, Colombo airport is just a big airport hangar. You can only enter the departures hall if you have a valid intinerary. You’ll get groped a number of times by security as you work your way through each check point before you finally pass through immigration. Once inside you’ll find places to convert your LKR back into your home currency.
Now comes the annoying part. There is nothing to do in the main check in foyer. Which means, that if you have a long wait (in our case it was 5 hours due to a 1:10am departure time), you’re gonna be sitting on the floor waiting. Fortunately, sooner rather than later we were able to check in and we promptly entered the lounge in the boarding areas. It’s fairly pricey to enter (USD $27) but considering the alternative is to lean against a wall for an extended period of time, the money is worth it.
I’ll now list the places I want to visit the next time I come to Sri Lanka.
YALA NATIONAL PARK
Sri Lanka’s most popular and rewarding national park, home to birds, monkeys, crocodiles and elephants, as well as the island’s largest population of leopards.
Anuradhapura is a vast and mysterious ruined city which bears witness to the great Sinhalese civilization that flourished here for some two thousand years.
There’s a towering rock outcrop known as Sigiriya which can be climbed. Sigiriya is home to the fascinating remains of one of the island’s former capitals, complete with ancient graffiti and elaborate water gardens.
So there you go. My experiences in Sri Lanka over 4 posts. If you missed any of them, check out the links below.
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