Sri Lanka - Tragic mountain climb at 1am

Haven't been in India and so Sri Lanka was for me like a glimpse what India might look like. The main reason why I decided going to Sri Lanka, was because of the scuba diving in the Maldives. I did not want to just spend one week in the Maldives and then go back home, so I put the Sri Lanka visit first and afterward went to the Maldives.

March 29 - Driver Ranjan didn't bring the Porsche

Negombo Beach
The usual main entry point to Sri Lanka is Colombo and so I started from here.

Driver Research

Weeks or months prior arriving in Sri Lanka, I was busy finding a reliable driver, which does bring me around the island in a few days, speaks excellent English, has a Porsche as a transport vehicle and works for one rupee per day. Probably not necessary to mention that I didn't find one..haha. Therefore had to lift my filters and after scrolling through forums and did inquiries to many of those freelance drivers, I finally found one called "Ranjan".

However, Ranjan didnt have porsche, it was some kind of toyota and the price was more than a few rupees.

Was now two days in Negombo for adjusting and today the reliable driver service started to Sigiriya Rock Fortress.

The 12 day Sri Lanka itinerary in a map.

Sri Lanka Tourist Map

March 31 - A real Buddha tooth in the tooth temple. A tourist trap? 

Kandy Tooth Relic
Tooth Relic Temple
After the Sigiriya Fortress, the drive continued towards some temples, caves and other relics. Now I'm in a place called Kandy where a temple with a tooth relic (Sri Dalada Maligawa) is located. I have no idea what a tooth relic is supposed to be, but they told me that they keep a tooth of the notorious Buddha there. They even say that the tooth gets cleaned once a week. That's almost more than I clean mine :)

I didnt see any tooth at all, but Sri Lankans seem to run crazy about this place. So the story must be true!

Lethal scorpion
After unsuccessfully trying to make a photo of the tooth, I decided that Ranjan can bring me now to the botanical garden to see the crazy trees. A big park with green grass, surrounded by gigantic curved trees and toxic scorpions. Ranjan dropped me off at the botanical garden, told me he will come be back in two hours.

Curved Tree Botanical Garden Kandy
Curved Trees
Several times during the trip I wasn't thinking about what could happen to my baggage when I was leaving it back in the car of Ranjan's car.

It would have such an easy business for him to drop me off and race away with all my luggage and the dive equipment in it.

But it didn't happen and I'm sure that occurs maybe once in a thousand times in Sri Lanka. Nevertheless it surely also was a good thing to do my driver research and evaluations before hiring this specific driver.

April 1 - Enough green stuff, its time for mountains 

Adams Peak
Remaining on time and track, Ranjan drove me through very green mountain areas, covered with Sri Lankan tea, ready to pick. The next destination was a big stone, called Adams Peak. This mountain is almost 2300 meters high. Not such an immense height, but nevertheless not much smaller than the tallest mountain in Sri Lanka with 2500 meters.

So what should I do now? Watching the mountain for one day?

I came here to climb the mountain and see the sunrise from up there.

That not only involves to walk all the way up there for about two-three hours but also to stand up in the middle of the night at 1am, to be there when the sun finally rises. 

Many people already waiting and try to find sleep up there when I arrived. Among them also many tourists. Its a small peak up there with a small terrace and some religious ornaments spread all over. From then on its just all about waiting for its going to be morning and BAAAM, the sun goes up, time to go home :)

Perfect! The sun has risen and everybody seems to be happy to go home now. 

So today, after having gone up there and watch the stupid sun rising behind mountains, making photos and climb down again with annoying muscle pain, I ask myself if it really was worth it :).

And to be honest, it wasn't THAT fascinating as I imagined it would be. But its worth the effort.

I guess the main reason why I did this was that of the genius advertisement on the internet and travel guides, supported with the sentence "The ultimate site to not miss in Sri Lanka, as every Sri Lankan citizen has to pilgrim Adams Peak once in their life".

April 4 - Train ride from Nuwara Eliya to Ella

Adams Peak is now a few days ago and I don't have to suffer from muscle pain anymore.

After driving through the beautiful mountainous area in Nuwara Eliya, I boarded the train from Nuwara Eliya to the place called Ella.

This train ride was indeed an overwhelming scenic ride and I enjoyed driving through these green mountain, with this old train that didn't have a toilet...hehe.. yes, no toilet.
Train Nuwara Eliya

April 4 - Down, down, down towards Haputale and Yala National Park

Sri Lanka Python
Never have been on a Safari before, so never have seen wild animals roaming around in front of me without a fence between. Well, maybe sometimes at train stations.

Of course, Yala NP isn't such a famous Safari ground compared to the ones in Africa. But in Sri Lanka, it's extraordinarily well known and important to see. I went there yesterday for only one afternoon and was put into an open-air truck with some other tourists.

Some Sri Lankan Animals

The best animals which were there, have been the elephants and the crocodile, and the python and the oyster. Just a small selection of important animals, but for a first Safari, I guess it was an excellent return on investment.

April 9 - The South Coast with Hikkaduwa, Mirissa, and Unawatuna

Down here on the south coast it was easy to get along. With only one main road along the coast, no risk is opening up getting into the wrong direction and that was the reason I didn't need a driver anymore.

Bus connections are regular and it was no problem to get from one village to the next, to do fast-track check on which one has the finer beach for relaxing and prepare some dive equipment for the scuba diving trip next week on the Maldives.

Searching the better beach

Found the best beach in Unawatuna, but all of them have some uniqueness. Different shape, size. At some, there are more fishing boats (Mirissa) for taking photos and on others (Unawatuna) are more convenient places to swim.


One full day in Mirissa before I continued to Unawatuna. There are so many beaches its difficult to chose the right one.
Traditional fishing in MirissaFishingboat in MirissaMirissa Beach


The first photo was the place where I had accommodation. Right! Opening the bungalow door and the only thing between the ocean and the bedroom is a chair and a table. Barely two meters and the ocean begins :)
Unawatuna Accomodation at the BeachJapanese Peace PagodaUnawatuna BeachGalle Town

Photos Sri Lanka:

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