Clients looking for that winter escape when the days become shorter and colder in Australia need look no further than sunny Sri Lanka – Asia’s best destination to visit in 2020, according to CNN Travel and Conde Nast Traveller. Steeped in cultural diversity, captivating history, gastronomical delights and heartwarming hospitality, Sri Lanka is a tropical island that boasts some of the world’s best sights and attractions for every type of traveller.
Described as a year-round destination, there is always something to explore and experience. The weather from May to July is dry and windy, which makes it perfect to soak in the sun, indulge in some tropical fruits, visit historical places and indulge in some safaris. Of course, there could be the occasional shower, but it’s an ideal time of the year for a great holiday.
The coastline, especially the east of the country is particularly popular during the winter season. Famed for pristine beaches in Nilaveli and Passikudah, visitors can get their dose of winter sun and an adrenaline rush in Arugam Bay, popular for wreck diving and its world-famous surf breaks.
Alternatively, head up the coast to indulge in some thrilling kitesurfing in Kalpitiya.
History & Culture
Culture and history enthusiasts will fall in love with this island and its fascinating 2,000-year-old history. The east region has many historical and archaeological sites in and around the area with the Koneswaram Temple among them, set atop a cliff in a part of an ancient Dutch fort that provides a stunning view of the ocean and the quaint port city. Fort Frederick, Kudumbigala, Girihadu Seya and Panama Lagoon Boat Safari, are some other great experiences off the beaten path.
The season is also very multicultural, with Vesak celebrations around the island in May; Esala Perahera in Kandy; and the Nallur Festival in Jaffna, both taking place in August.
May to July is great for wildlife! Perfect for a mid-year holiday, families will love the wildlife experiences, from seeing the famous elephant gathering at the Minneriya National Park, to witnessing these majestic creatures roam freely at the Udawalawe National Park.
Yala and Wilpattu National Parks, which are relatively quiet during this period (in terms of visitors), are best to visit, as the Palu trees are bearing fruit and attracting the hungry sloth bears. Also, try to catch a glimpse of the elusive Sri Lankan leopard and the many endemic bird species in the island.
Marine life is another key highlight during this time of the year, with pods of dolphins and whales swimming about in the eastern seas.
Like a Local
Sri Lankans are extremely welcoming and hospitable. They also have a deep passion for cricket, so feel free to join in with the locals for a friendly game of cricket in a rural village.
You’ll also see children and adults enjoying flying kites. Get together with the locals for a fun-filled experience to create your very own kite with bamboo sticks and colourful paper.
Another great outdoor experience is taking a boat ride in the stunning Kandalama Lake, where you will meet a domesticated Sri Lankan elephant for an exclusive elephant experience. Get an opportunity to feed and bathe this gentle giant and on the return, hop on a local tractor ride.
With many new hotels, malls, restaurants and excursions, not forgetting the amazing hotel deals on offer, Sri Lanka is the perfect destination for those desiring to experience a winter holiday with a difference.
Authenticities Sri Lanka has a strong presence in Australia, with Sales and Business Development Manager – Kirsty Thomas-Thoeun based in Melbourne.
This article was produced with content supplied by Authenticities Sri Lanka.