Best travel tips for Sri Lanka

Best travel tips for Sri Lanka

Considering a trip to Sri Lanka? Excellent choice! Here is everything you need to know before you travel to Sri Lanka, the land of paradise! This culturally rich Utopia in the Indian Ocean is a true traveler’s dream! From the turquoise coasts to its lush green foliage, the extremely hospitable character of the residents to some of the best food your taste buds are likely to ever enjoy, Sri Lanka has it all! There is unquestionably a reason it is currently relishing its time in the spotlight as the most trending travel destination! You’re in for an amazing experience if this is your first time visiting Sri Lanka! the people, the scenery, and the animals. However, it is best that you understand and familiarises yourself with the cultural aspects of the country to avoid any unfortunate situations whilst on your vacation. Here are a few travel tips for Sri Lanka if you are visiting it for the first time solo or with your family, that might come in handy.

Important travel tips to go around Sri Lanka

Most travelers think it’s easy and quite inexpensive to travel around Sri Lanka. This changed after the fuel crisis that hit Sri Lanka in 2022, prices soared high making tuk rides not a viable option for long-distance rides. Check to see if the tuk-tuk has a meter, which should keep pricing fair, or negotiate a price with the driver before getting in. You can always get a car or tuk from Uber or the local Pick transport. However, the most affordable options for transport are always public buses and trains! Almost anywhere in Sri Lanka can be reached by bus. They can be crowded, and almost all lack air conditioning, but if you’re in Sri Lanka on a tight budget, this is an amazing option to explore Sri Lanka without a fuss!

Learn about the culture

It’s important to understand the fundamentals of history and culture before visiting. Spend time learning about the Colonial era and the Civil War in particular. You would respect Sri Lankans and your time there more if you have a basic understanding of what they endured.
Travel to the best places in Sri Lanka
If traveling to Sri Lanka for the first time, do not make the mistake of cramming too many destinations. Make sure that You plan a realistic itinerary that includes the best places that Srilanka has to offer! It is quite impossible to cover all the places within a short stay! To avoid spending your whole trip looking at Sri Lanka from a car window, the best travel tips for Sri Lanka is to pick just a few of its top attractions and trending places that you simply do not want to miss! Road travel from Colombo to the south coast is quick due to Sri Lanka’s highways. However, traveling to the Hill Country is the most time-consuming due to its crowded roadways. Make sure that you take the train to explore the serene hills of Sri Lanka. You wouldn’t want to miss Mother Nature at its best! Do not miss Colombo! Make sure you squeeze in a day or two to experience the trendy and vibrant towns, cafes, and beaches of Colombo! It has a lot to offer if you stay for a few days, from outstanding Sri Lankan restaurants to clothing stores, and contemporary art to fusion art cafes. It is an absolute must that you do not forgo the commercial capital city in favor of the southern beaches or the cultural triangle in the central hills!

Book your tickets around the monsoon season

The southwest monsoon strikes Sri Lanka’s south and west coasts between May and September, bringing heavy rains and rough seas, whereas the northern and eastern regions of the island are pleasant and dry. The south and west of Sri Lanka are at their best between November and March when the northeast monsoon arrives, while the northern and eastern regions experience showers. In reality, Sri Lanka experiences irregular monsoon rains, so plan for brief, intense downpours mixed with extended periods of hot, sunny weather. Going to several regions of Sri Lanka during their wet “off-seasons” is rewarding because fewer people visit and accommodation prices reduce dramatically.

Spending money in Sri Lanka

Don’t stock up on rupees before traveling to Sri Lanka, and only exchange what you need. This is one of the most important travel tips for Sri Lanka. There are ATMs located all over the country, but if at all feasible, just use Bank of Ceylon ATMs because they don’t charge any additional fee. Many restaurants, clothing stores, and shops in Sri Lanka now accommodate card transactions. This is a country that runs on cash, from tuk-tuk drivers to restaurants, and grocery stores. It might just be convenient if you just have some cash on you!

Dress modestly and appropriately for Sri Lanka’s hills and sacred sites.

The mountains of Sri Lanka rise more than 2000 metres above sea level, and temperatures there are cooler than along the coast. Bring a lightweight sweater for chilly evenings and early mornings (particularly between December and March). Bring a sarong as well; you may use it as a beach blanket or towel, a shawl or skirt to cover your shoulders or knees when touring temples, a warm layer when riding in air-conditioned buses, or for early morning safari vehicle drives. Make sure that you dress in a way that respects Sri Lankan customs. These are travel tips for Sri Lanka that are a must to follow! Despite its thriving tourism sector, many Sri Lankans are intensely religious and socially conservative. Swimwear is appropriate for the beach but not for exploring the city. On any beach in Sri Lanka, it is prohibited to be topless or in the nude. When visiting sacred sites, avoid wearing attire that exposes the shoulders, upper arms, or legs. Loud yelling in front of others, loud or boisterous behavior, and public shows of affection are all taboo.

Take care when capturing pictures and moments

Always get consent before taking a photo of someone. These are important travel tips for Sri Lanka. Take note that you can be approached for money if you take pictures of the well-known stilt fisherman in Koggala. Genuine stilt fishermen are a rare breed nowadays. Flash photography is not permitted inside temples (or close to military installations), and some Hindu sites may outright prohibit photography. Be careful not to stand with your back to a Buddha statue while taking pictures if you are shooting temples.