Sri Lanka: tourist information, weather, seasons, time, helpful information
General information about Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka (Sri Lanka) is an island country in South Asia in the Indian ocean. Official name – Democratic socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, and previously the state had called Ceylon. Its new name it received in 1972, but is still occasionally referred to as the island of Ceylon. The island is located one hundred kilometers from the Indian subcontinent, separated from it by the Palk Strait and the Gulf of Mannar (Sri Lanka on the map).
It should indicate the typical misconception of tourists who believe that Sri Lanka is part of India. This is absolutely not true. Currently Sri Lanka has no relation to India. It is an independent state, and no state of India, despite the fact that the people and culture in these countries is very similar. And another thing: the name of the country be pronounced equally correctly as "Sri Lanka" and "Sri Lanka".
Virtually the entire territory of the state are located on the same island – Sri Lanka. Also, the state includes many very small Islands. The island and small States (119th in the world). The size of the island 445 225 kilometers, and covers an area of 65 610 sq km, which is approximately one and a half times larger than the area of Moscow region.
It is considered that the capital of Sri Lanka – Colombo. However, actually, the capital is a small suburb of Colombo, Sri jayawardenapura-Kotte.
Sri Lanka for the Russians – not a massive area. We can say that it is still exotic and rare even compared to other Asian countries. So there is something here to aspire to. Besides, this small state has to offer tourists.
First of all, tourists come to Sri Lanka for the exotic. This is one of the oldest States, and there remained a very rare monuments of culture and history, most of which are somehow connected with Buddhism. The many attractions of the island is included in the world heritage list of UNESCO. Usually tourists arriving here have no idea how many interesting things is fraught with the island, believing that in addition to Ceylon tea and the beaches of the there's nothing. However, having become acquainted with the country closer, you realize how interesting the world is on the former island of Ceylon.
You should be prepared for the fact that Sri Lanka cannot be called a modern and advanced country for an active lifestyle. Here is a little nightlife, modern cities and shopping centers for shopping. Stay here quiet, thoughtful and, like the whole country is of the hue Buddhist humility.
In addition to historical and cultural attractions Sri Lanka offers a good beach vacation. The beaches around the perimeter of the island - hundreds of kilometres. On the beaches built many modern resorts with great hotels. There are also hotel complexes located away from the tourist places in the vicinity of the villages of local people. In these hotels, no one and nothing will disturb your secluded getaway. On the island there is the mountain resort of Nuwara Eliya, situated at an altitude of about 2 thousand meters above sea level.
The beautiful nature of the island. Among the excursions offered on the island many of these that will acquaint you with its flora and fauna. Highlights of the tour-rafting on mountain rivers. There are simple day trips and multi-day tours. Moreover, familiarity with natural beauty will certainly be United with familiarity with historical sites, because it is in such wonderful places ancient inhabitants built their religious buildings.
Another form of entertainment on the island is diving. Moreover, the diving here is interesting not only rich and beautiful underwater world, but also specially organized for tourists underwater sites: wrecks, underwater cliffs, grottoes and caves. Among the sunken ships, including meet old court. However, diving is not always possible here. The main season for diving is from October to April.
However, travelers and tourists should understand that Sri Lanka is not Thailand. Conditions for travel and tourism are not developed such as in Tae. In General, we can say that Sri Lanka in terms of tourism still is quite a complicated country, and there are downsides and complexities abound, especially for those who travel independently.
One of the main problems here is that while for most local residents, the tourist is a walking wallet. To obtain money from tourists here trying everything, and not even necessarily for any services, and just for a nice conversation with you. Of course, the number of divorces is on the money in terms of tourists here just countless, and inflated prices for guests – just the norm.
Not to say that it is very cheap resort. When compared with Thailand, hotel prices are higher by almost half, and sometimes two, at equal quality. In some places in General can be difficult to find a normal conditions for accommodation at a reasonable price. The cost of visiting attractions, especially those included in the UNESCO list, actually defies rational explanation: the price of the tickets is clearly too high at times. Read more about prices in Sri Lanka here.
There are problems with the food: unfortunately, the street food here is not as developed as in many other Southeast Asian countries, and one has only to deviate from the tourist routes how you can experience some difficulties to find to eat. Alcohol though, and sold freely, it can be bought only in special shops, which is very small. In addition, these stores are closed at night and on holidays.
All this does not mean that Sri Lanka is a poor country. But every tourist needs to know not only the positive aspects of the resort, but be ready to difficulties.
As primarily a tourist-excursionist, his main goal in Sri Lanka I have set to overtake the most interesting sights and beaches to leave for a snack. And so it happened: swim I managed only two times. But it's not that there wasn't time. The second part of the route I made for a beach holiday, and visited Negombo, the Hikkaduwa, Unawatuna and other beach resorts. In Negombo in the water to climb, I even did not, it was really frustrating to do this after I saw peeing in the water local, and then the mud, throwing in the sea. Just played the disgust, and the water was really dirty. In Hikkaduwa beach and the sea is like, but there were big waves at the time of my stay. In Unawatuna beach is also not liked, and the resort itself. Not sure why people go there. Cool beaches were in Mirissa and Tangalle, there, I actually bathed. But in mountaini in Colombo in the water I would not dare at all to go, although I saw many bathing tourists. Well, I guess that's a radical opinion on local beaches, but what is...
Attractions Sri Lanka, I looked at almost everything. At least everything that is included in the UNESCO list 100%, and much more. Ticket prices I was very unpleasantly surprised, even before the trip, we knew they were high. But all hoped for a miracle. Reluctantly gave $ 30!!! for visiting Sigiriya, where was an hour and a half terribly disappointed. Yes, the place is interesting, unusual, but they are more expensive than interesting. When compared with the Angkor, which is about the same, I believe that I paid just for nothing.
In General, during the trip I accumulated a lot of negativity. I really don't like, for example, when you go to some less popular village temple, with confidence, that's really something here for visit no need to pay. But there it was. And here is the output when all inspected, runs up to me a man in monastic robes, and begins to solicit donations. No question, I think, took a hundred of their money and thrown into the donation box. Here begins the scandal. Monk demands money in his hand, but not 100, but 200 rupees. Put this "leeminho" in the hands of a hundred and run away, but he rows for back and send to my address the curse. As something to a monk, it all turns out, not Buddhist.
And such deceptions do not count, and the arrogance is simply amazing, even Vietnam is resting. Here's another. Sitting on the beach. A guy comes up, turns the traditional conversation about the weather, my country etc. And then, "Give me 70 rupees." Just like that, no way, or maybe he thinks, for such a pleasant conversation. Again, such situations are repeated more than once.
And more than once I had to feel here that if a tourist for Lancia does not represent a financial interest, for him empty space. I do not require a special relationship, although they should have, because I am a guest and a woman in a foreign country and could take a closer look. Where there.
In General, it seems that the tourists have to pay for all and all, equated to national politics. It becomes very sad when educated tourists while sightseeing prowl in search of the urn to throw the wrapper from the candy, and the local throw him right under the feet of the empty bottles without a twinge of conscience. Yes, and then all clean, but you pay for all the tourists. They shamelessly littering right at the monuments, where people are free, but foreigners have to pay $ 20 for entrance. "Money for the maintenance of the monument, on its cleaning!!! You pay, and we are going to litter". Terrible shame, and constantly have the feeling that you were unfairly screwed.
I, of course, in some cases even understand. Most recently ended war (2010), an influx of tourists, and everyone is trying to skim for a quick. Well, let them shoot, and I train again next time in tai, and come back here only if finally, the Sri Lankans will come to their senses and begin to respect and love tourists, not to have them and to smile widely. Well, I do not like.
Religion Of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is a multireligious country. Almost all of the inhabitants of the country, what religion they profess, very religious. Sri Lanka has traditionally been considered a Buddhist country, Buddhism is professed 76% of the population. There are also Hindus (8%), Muslims (6%). In some regions of the country, such as in Negombo, a very popular Catholicism.
The state of the device.
Sri Lanka officially the Democratic socialist Republic. The Sri Lankan President is elected by universal suffrage every six years.
In 2010, the elected President Mahinda Rajapaksa (elected in 2004) dissolved the Parliament, taking the course on departure from a democratic regime. The political situation in the country now is not entirely stable, and that in some way affects the tourists. Almost everywhere outside of the tourist areas exhibited the checkpoints. Everyone, including foreign tourists passports are checked. Testing and inspection are even tour buses. So, going on trips or walks outside recreational areas should carry a passport.
Language. In Sri Lanka there are two official languages – Sinhalese (Sinhala) and Tamil (Tamil). In Sinhalese speaking 74% of the population, Tamil 18%. Another 8% of the population speak other languages.
English language at "some" level hold about 10% of the population of Sri Lanka. It is usually, urban residents, employees of public institutions working in the field of tourism. Outside the cities the locals usually own no more than a couple words of welcome in English.
Weather Sri Lanka, the tourist seasons
The climate of Sri Lanka is tropical, warm all year round. To the equator here literally on the doorstep, so the temperature throughout the year nearly constant and always equal to 28-30 degrees. Most comfortable high temperature is transported to the coastal areas, where there is always the sea breeze, and in the highlands of the island, where the temperature is about 10 degrees lower.
Seasons in Sri Lanka are not determined depending on changes in temperature and rainfall. In this connection, on the island stands the dry season (high tourist season) and rainy season (low tourist season). Moreover, despite the small size of the island, on opposite coasts of the island, the period of the rainy season varies:
- in the North-Eastern coast the rainy season is from October to January;
- in the South-West coast, the rainy season is from may to July.
The rainy season has plenty of rain, but fortunately, most of them are usually held at night. If the rain starts in the afternoon, he usually goes a powerful downpour, flooding all around, and ends quickly. So, even the rainy season is not a complete contraindication for relaxation.
Dry season (high season). At this time almost no precipitation, and the temperature a little bit, but weakened.
Given this, we can say that the tourist season in Sri Lanka lasts all year round, you just need to choose the right place to stay.
Current weather in Sri Lanka (in Colombo) and the forecast for the near future:
The time in Sri Lanka
The time difference in Sri Lanka and Moscow +2,5 (two and half) hours in winter and summer.
Duty free on arrival. At Colombo airport immediately after passport control there are several duty-free shops. The prices are quite reasonable, you can pay off the currency and plastic cards. So it is not necessary to bring across the world a bottle of alcohol purchased in the "Dytiki" at home.
Voltage, electricity. The voltage in Sri Lanka, and we have 220 volts, but three-prong outlet. To connect to "our" two-pin plugs, you need a adapter that you can buy on the spot or ask at the hotel reception. If the adapter is not in the top hole on the outlet might as well stick some pins, such as a pencil, and then you can safely insert the plug.
Where lower prices? In non-tourist areas the prices of everything (Souvenirs, food, etc.) about one and a half to two times lower than in the tourist.
Documents. Due to the instability of the political situation in the country outside of the tourist areas of foreign tourists had often checked documents. Therefore, going on trips, it is recommended to have a passport.
Holiday Singing. Every full moon of the Buddhist rules is considered a holiday and a national holiday (Poya - singing). At this time, banks are closed, many shops and public institutions. Be sure to take this into account when planning travel. These days in the country prohibited the sale and drinking of alcoholic beverages in public places, including restaurants and bars. Drinking alcohol is only possible in the hotel room.
Ceylon tea. Famous brand Ceylon tea best buy during the tour of the tea plantations, in specialized shops or in the shops. The cost of tea in the duty-free is much higher. If you are not a fan of beautiful branded travel packages, you can buy tea in the supermarket: it cost much cheaper and almost the same quality.
Bug spray nasekomyh. Find Sri Lanka a good mosquito spray is problematic. But you can find in pharmacies special oil against mosquitoes.
Alcohol in Sri Lanka. Alcohol, even light, are sold only in special shops, which one. To find alcohol in supermarkets is unrealistic (except for the very large, where there are special departments), restaurants and cafes are also everywhere. And don't confuse the drink, called "Gigner Beer" with alcohol. "Gigner Beer" is just a local lemonade ginger.
Price tags. Price tags on goods in shops Sri Lanka is not, however, the price of goods is always indicated. It is stamped in small letters on the bottles, packages, packaging (see photo, RS 140, Cho means 140 crore). This is the maximum price at which goods are sold. The price may be lower (the stock in the store), but not above. And in most major stores and happens. However, small private shops sometimes sell a product at its arbitrary price, but it is rather rare.
Inspection of the temples. When visiting temples you need to remember that when you sign you have to take shoes and a hat, and not to go into too open clothes (shorts, t-shirts). Around the Central sanctuary in the Hindu temples where the main deity, need clockwise (left to right). With rare exceptions it is almost always possible to photograph without problem, otherwise, you can ask permission or pay (usually no more than 250 rupees per shot).
Unexpected surcharges. Sri Lankans love to include to include in the final cost of any service or product all sorts of unexpected fees and taxes in advance with no warnings. So it makes sense where possible (accommodation, rental) to pay in advance. If you refuse to take the money in advance, expect surprises in the form of surcharges upon check-out.
Raincoats. For some strange reason, Sri Lanka is not so easy to find raincoats. So if you prefer umbrellas to raincoats, it is better to buy them still at home.
Repellent. Repellent, bought in Russia, not very effective on local insects, find local repellent in Sri Lanka virtually impossible. Alternatively, buy the most expensive house "thermonuclear" repellents. Local as a protective means offering coconut oil. But, first, its effectiveness is questionable, and secondly you almost certainly will slip on his irrational speculative prices.
Signs Hotel. Not every sign "Hotel" in Sri Lanka really refers to the hotel. Under such signboards are also small restaurants, so don't be surprised if you ask a room, and you will be uncomprehending look.