Useful information about Sri lanka
Australia, Brazil, Cambodia, Cook Islands, Djibouti, Fiji, Finland, Germany, Guyana, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kiribati, Laos, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Myanmar, Nauru, New Zealand,Niue Island, Norway, Oman, Palau, Palestine, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Russia, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands,Sri Lanka,Thailand, Tonga, Tuvalu, UAE, Ukraine, USA, Vanuatu, Vietnam.
- Valid passport with atleast 6 month validity from the date of travel.
- 2 Forms duly filled and signed by applicant in his/her own handwriting
Arthur C. Clarke, the well known scientist who lived half of his life in Sri Lanka, has once described “ The Island of Ceylon (Sri Lanka) is a small universe; it contains as many variations of culture, scenery, and climate as some countries a dozen times its size” Sri Lanka was also known as the “Granary of the East” for its bumping harvests and rich agricultural practices, and “Pearl of Indian Ocean” for its beauty and astonishing diversity. Marco Polo has described the country as “The finest Island for its size in all the world. The two monsoon seasons bring the Island timely rainfalls, thereby innovating a rich irrigation engineering system which provides adequate amount of water to the needy areas for cultivation.
From the ancient times, Sri Lanka had been occupied time and again by foreign forces and had been a colony for hundreds of years with the sole idea of trading Gems, Spices and timber etc.
The diversity of the Island includes variously shaped sublime beaches, geographic features such as lagoons, wetlands and Rivers, varies types of wildlife rich jungle, mist- shrouded mountains covered with wind stunted trees, plains known as Patanas, vast expanse of tea plantations and waterfalls.
Describing the people, one can always encounter the smiling and friendly faces and legendary hospitality of the Islands warm and friendly people. The multi-ethnic society consist of majority Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, Burghers etc. The country can also proudly boast of a rich cultural heritage for over 2000 years of recorded history. This is further confirmed and recognized by UNESCO which has declared six “World Heritage Sites” in the Island, namely The Sacred City of Anuradhapura, The Ancient City of Polonnaruwa, The Golden Temple of Dambulla, The Ancient City (Fortress) of Sigiriya, The Sacred City of Kandy and
the Old Town (Fort) of Galle. (The seventh World Heritage Site in Sri Lanka is an Ecological one ’The Sinharaja (Rain) Forest Reserve’
The country can also proudly boast of a rich cultural heritage for over 2000 years of recorded history. This is further confirmed and recognized by UNESCO which has declared six “World Heritage Sites” in the Island, namely The Sacred City of Anuradhapura, The Ancient City of Polonnaruwa, The Golden Temple of Dambulla, The Ancient City (Fortress) of Sigiriya, The Sacred City of Kandy and the Old Town (Fort) of Galle. (The seventh World Heritage Site in Sri Lanka is an Ecological one “The Sinharaja Rain Forest Reserve”
The Island nation, multi ethnic and multi-religious endows from ancient times, a legacy of many colorful festivals relating to Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim and Christian religions. These festivals are commemorated with flair of a people with a genius for pageantry and ritual. The most important being the Vesak, celebrated by Buddhists on Full Moon Poya day in May, commemorating the Birth, Enlightenment and Death of Buddha. The most tourist oriented festival is the Kandy Esala Perahera held in late July to August for 10 consecutive days climaxing on Esala (July) Poya day. Taking part in this are drummers, dancers, whip-crackers, torch bearers, acrobats and robed elephants. The reason for the festival, the Sacred Tooth Relic of Buddha is carried by a caparisoned tusker, for the people to venerate.
Surrounded by 1330 km coast, the Island Sri Lanka is an ideal location for surfing, wind surfing, water skiing, sailing, scuba-diving, snorkeling, speed-boating, banana boating, water-scooter riding etc. The sites are located in the Negombo region, Wadduwa, Kalutara, Bentota and Hikkaduwa in west and South west coasts, Galle, Unawatuna, Koggala, Tangalle, Hambantota and Arugam-bay in South and South- eastern coasts. Sri Lanka having more than 100 rivers and lagoons and inland lakes have the facility to do camping trips and Kayaking and canoeing. Kithulgala is the best place to do white-water rafting through the Kelani River. Varied landscapes offer the opportunity for trekking, nature trails etc, in places like Sinharaja rain forest, knuckles mountain range, Horton plains and Hakgala Strickt Natural Reserve. Further, Para-gliding, rock-climbing, cave treks, mountain biking and hot-air ballooning are possible.
Sri Lanka possesses a high degree of biodiversity, 13% of the Island are conserved as national parks, reserves, sanctuaries and jungle-corridors. Conservationists have identified Sri Lanka (together with Western Ghats of India) as one of world biodiversity hot-spots. The Sinharaja Rain Forest is named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its remarkably high proportion of endemic species. A wide variety of mammals such as elephants, leopards, sloth-bear, sambhur, spotted deer, barking deer, wild boar, water buffaloes, porcupines, civet cats, giant squirrels and monkeys can be observed in one of the 14 national parks on a jeep-safari. Also for ornithologists, fair amount of birds can be observed among 233 resident species (33 endemics) and migratory species, altogether numbering over 400 species. There are 171 reptiles including two crocodile species and 83 species of snakes out of which only 5 are lethal. Number of amphibians has risen to 106 of which 90 are endemic.
The country has within it some of Asia’s finest hotels, located in ideal surround dings with assortment of accommodation options. In Colombo there is host of modern five –star hotels and also iconic colonial-era hotels with the charm of bygone era. In other parts of the country, there are hotels situated in stunning surroundings i.e. country side resort hotels, in coastal areas where most of the package tourists stay, some of which are designed by one of 20th century’s reputed Asian architects Geoffrey Bawa, whose vision is referred to as “tropical modernism”. There are also boutique type hotels on the west and south coasts, mainly centered at southern city Galle. In the hill-country towns such as Kandy, Nuwara’eliya and Bandarawela feature colonial-era hotels and also further accommodation like, beautifully converted colonial homes, tea and rubber plantation buildings, jungle cabins, tree-houses and eco-lodges and also camping under canvass.
The cultivation of many types of rice, spices, vegetables and fruits ensures availability of varied and select cuisine. Rice as a staple consumed with adequately spiced curries such as eggplant, potato, green banana, chicken, fish etc. Other Sri Lankan foods include hoppers (pan-cake like snack), string hoppers (steamed rice noodles) and pittu (mixture of flour and scraped coconut) Lamprais (rice and accompaniments baked in banana leaves). Sea food lovers can enjoy fresh fish, prawns, crab, squid and cray fish. The desserts consist of fresh fruits like mango, pineapple, banana and papaya etc, buffalo curd with palm-trickle and Malay type caramel-like watalappam.
Colombo in Sri Lanka has a lot of dining options. You can choose your plate from Italian, French, Mediterranean, Chinese and other tropical fares to cater to your varied tastes and moods. However, we shall suggest you to try out the oriental cuisine which will take you to the world of spices and aroma. And the best avenue to relish the Oriental experience is the Indian Restaurants in Colombo. The typical spicy flavor of the wide-ranging varieties of the vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes will lead you into the world of Indian cuisine.
- Indian Restaurants in Colombo will lead you into the world of the Indian cuisine, which reflects intense use of spices and herbs.
- A traditional meal in Indian cuisine refers to fruit, vegetables, grain, meat, fish and dairy products
- Indian Restaurants in Colombo will offer you rice, pulses and, vegetable curries.
- isine is distinguished by use of coconut and curry leaves. Some of the famous South Indian dishes you will find in the Indian Restaurants in Colombo are, Dosa, Idly, Vada, Bonda, Bajji.
Up to a few years ago, Colombo was lacking in a variety of nightlife. Recently however, a rash of nightspots has popped up in a short space of time giving everyone who likes to indulge in such activities, more options. Although there are several nightclubs and bars catering to young adults, those with live bands (mostly of excellent standard), are very popular with a more mature clientele.
A wide choice of excellent restaurants can be found in Colombo and a few other places, serving a range of cuisines. Don't forget to try out the street-side joints where you will often find some of the tastiest food.
One of the biggest revolutions in Colombo's nightlife is the emergence of a Pub Culture, so coupled with Sri Lanka's reputation for being a hospitable place, engaging in a pub-crawl is sure to fill your night with great memories and new friends.
Colombo is an intriguing city with something for everyone, a place constantly changing, reinventing itself and moving forward as well as keeping some of its old lustre. One thing is for sure, you can never get bored in Colombo with so much to see and do.
Although no Las Vegas, there is plenty of nightlife in Colombo. Many casinos, or otherwise also called clubs here, scream for your attention with flashing neon lights. The clubs offer gamblers roulette, baccarat, poker, blackjack, and other games to try their luck as well as complimentary food and drinks, and sometimes music with live bands playing. Entrance is only for those over 18 years and some clubs offer entrance only for foreigners. Be dressed in smart casual for instant admission.
Feel the healing touch of Ayurveda at a tropical health spa that refreshes your soul and spirit. For thousands of years the most popular method used to restore and rejuvenate tired bodies and weary souls has been Ayurveda for which Sri Lanka has been the center for past 2000 years. This consists of herbal treatments, baths and massages, together with yoga, meditation and special diets. In addition to this Sri Lanka has number of spas which has Thai massage, hydrotherapy, reflexology and beauty treatments. A visit to an herbal/spice garden will keep you updated about plants and its effect on Ayurvedic treatments.
In Sri Lanka take advantage of a sensational range of shopping. In handicraft shops familiarize yourself with traditional designs such as makara (the mythical animal) lion, swan, elephant and lotus carved on brassware like boxes, trays, lanterns, vases and carved and jewel studded silverware, and tea sets that make excellent souvenirs. In addition ritual masks and other wood carvings, lacquer ware, batiks and handloom textiles, lace are popular. A visit to a bargain priced shopping mall one can find latest international fashion cloths, not forgetting the fact that Sri Lanka is a major garments exporter. Finally one must not forget to visit a gem museum in Sri Lanka, where you find the finest variety of precious stones among the world’s gem producing countries – blue sapphires, star sapphires, rubies, cat’s eyes, garnets, moon stones, aquamarines and topazes, etc. Also Sri Lanka has a tradition naturally in jewellery-making that turns the gems more attractive.