When you think of Sri Lanka, you would immediately imagine wild jungles, tea plantations, friendly people, incredible food and stunning beaches. While the country was used to unattractive to tourists, tourism has started to reappear on this island located at off the bottom of India.
Although package tours are famous, there are other options to see the best of Sri Lanka. You can travel independently around the many parts of the island by train, bus and tuk-tuk which will leave you putting the country on the top of your list of favourite holiday destinations. If you are planning to travel to Sri Lanka, consider the tips below.
Set a Budget
Know that Sri Lanka is not a very cheap country just like most South East Asian countries. Food and accommodation are pricier than neighbouring countries and foreigners should expect higher entrance fee in main attractions than locals.
Prepare yourself to spend between $30 and $50 per person on accommodation, drinks, transport and food every day. Such cost is based upon staying in homestays and guesthouses as well as easting at your accommodation or local restaurants. Hostels are not common outside the cities; however, if you can find one, you will surely save some money. If you wish to take n the majority of the main sight, expect to spend the same amount for tours and entrance fees.
As with most tourists, you may arrive in Sri Lanka through Bandaranaike International Airport. Expect a painless process to get through immigration and luggage claim. Also, it will be straightforward to get local currency. Foreign exchange booths offer a competitive rate; however, there are many ATMs nearby if you would rather withdraw cash.
Consider getting a local SIM card before you leave the terminal. Because of the captive market, private transport can be expensive for budget travellers unless you go to Sri Lanka in a group. You may have to spend about $12 for a seat in a shared minivan and $19 for a taxi into Colombo. Local buses heading to the city will cost you $1.20.
Tamil and Sinhala are the two languages in Sri Lanka. English is widely spoken and often found in places where visitors gather. Bus destination boards, many shops, road signs and advertising billboards usually include an English translation.
On average, you may pay $20 to $30 per night for a private room that has hot water and breakfast. It is a good idea to book a room the day before you arrive so you could ignore the crowd of those offering some help and meeting each bus. But you can always turn up and then negotiate the price. Just be ready to spend time to find a house which works for you. Check out www.uniktour.com/fr/voyage-sri-lanka for more options.
Composed of a big plate of rice and maybe 4 to 12 various cuisines in tiny bowls, you often have a meat option like chicken and salted fish. Consider trying vegetable and fruit curries that come in nearly all flavors.
Breakfast tend to be also varied. However, many tourists love the string hoppers, which is made from rice flour. There is also the famous kottu roti, composed of shredded pieces of roti bread that is mixed with vegetables and spices. This street food goes perfectly with a bottle of Lion beer. Food prices widely vary depending upon where you choose to eat. Often, prices can be as high as $10 for curry and rice in most parts of the town.