Sri Lanka is a country most Asian people would find familiar. The country which is located in South Asia is remarkably beautiful. Yet Indonesians still show lack of interest to travel to this country. Long story short, before 1972, Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon. It is largely believed that until 1480 the land of Sri Lanka was still connected to India, before a storm came and covered the connecting land with water. Colombo is the biggest city in Sri Lanka, and the only airport in the country is located in this city.
A little note for Indonesians who want to visit Sri Lanka: you will need to apply for a visa, which can be done online. The process is really fast if you provide all the required documents. You will be charged Rp350.000,- but you can also make “visa on arrival” when you arrive at the airport, with a slightly more expensive price. For flights from Indonesia, you can pick a direct flight from Soekarno Hatta airport or a connecting flight transiting in Kuala Lumpur. If you book the tickets long before the flight date you can get a cheaper price. Since I bought the ticket near the flight date, a round trip from Jakarta to Colombo costed me 8 million rupiahs. So, you’d better thoroughly prepare your trip in advance when you want to travel, most importantly for ticket booking :p. Another important thing is you need to check the best time or month to visit the place in terms of weather. I wasn’t really lucky because it was raining for 2 days full from dawn to dark, so there were only 2 days left for me to tour around. It was okay for me though! I didn’t get to explore many parts of Sri Lanka. I only had time to explore Galle, a city on the south western beach of Sri Lanka. It takes less than 2 hours to drive through the toll road from the airport. There are public transportation options available, which are of course cheaper compared to renting private transportation. I you want to save yourself the trouble you can use private transportation facilities which will cost you approximately less than 1 million rupiahs.
The natural landscape is absolutely stunning. There are a few beaches popular among foreign tourists, which are obviously far from dirty. The beaches around here are very well kept for their cleanliness. Moreover, the local people’s friendliness is the plus point that makes you want to stay and travel the place even longer. However, don’t be surprised when Asian people, especially Indonesian and Philippines who come to Sri Lanka gain so much attention from locals. Most Sri Lankans are fascinated by Southeast Asian faces. Now then, below are some recommendations of fascinating accommodations with affordable price for your stay in Sri Lanka:
This villa has a uniquely shaped building, equipped with outstanding facilities. Minimalistic with the touch of white color scheme, this hotel brings you a feel of Santorini, Greece at a standard price. You can enjoy the beach view straight from the villa, because the place is only roughly 20 meters away from the shoreline.
Weligama Bay Marriott Resort
This hotel must have been quite familiar to you. This is a new hotel in Sri Lanka, and is one of the biggest hotels here. The amenities are definitely top notch. You can enjoy the stunning sight of the beach from your room if you book the room type offering the beach view.
Where to Go
There are countless must-visit destinations in Sri Lanka, but since I only had 2 days full to stroll around, my choice went to Galle area, specifically Unawatuna and Mirissa. These places are rather well-known among foreigners, so you will often meet foreign tourists when you visit tourist attractions in Galle. If you have much time to spend in Sri Lanka, try visiting the tea plantation. This country is famous for its tea plantation tourism. For the food, you’ve got to try local dishes. Their food is kind of similar to Indian food; they’ve got strong touch of spices. I personally found that Sri Lankan dishes don’t really meet my taste. It’s not a problem anyway because they make delish breads which are as tasteful as European breads.