Sri Lanka and the Maldives

Aug-Sept 1992


Tue 18th August. We flew to Colombo on Air Lanka. As soon as we arrived we were 'captured' by a taxi driver who subsequently took us on the tour of Sri Lanka, including Negombo (fish market), Anuradhapura (temples), Polonnarua (temples), Sigiriya (rock fortress), Kandy (town and temple), Nuwara Eliya (Hill Club and tea plantation) and World's End (dramatic view). After visiting the Maldive islands we returned to Sri Lanka and went to Galle and Matara. Route

Wed 19th. In Colombo. Walked round the Fort and went to the Mount Lavinia Hotel for dinner.

Cargill's department store, Colombo  
Chatham Street, Colombo  
The colonial-style Cargill's department store in central Colombo. Chatham Street in the centre of Colombo.

Thur 20th. We drove up the west coast, stopping at Negombo fish market. Went to Anuradhapura, saw the sacred Bo tree and Isurumuniya temple. Stayed at Tissawera Guest House.

Negombo fish market  
Fish!                                                                                                       

Fri 21st. Drove round Anuradhapura visiting all the temples - saw Ruvanvelisaya Dagoba, Thaparama Dagoba, Lankaru Dagoba, Abhayagiri Dagoba, Samadhi Buddha, Kuttam Pokuna (twin ponds) and Jetavanarama.  Then drove on to Polonnaruwa and visited the palace, council chamber, baths, quadrangle and north end.

Ruvanvelisaya Dagoba Anuradhapura  
Ruvanvelisaya Dagoba Anuradhapura  
Thuparama Dagoba Anuradhapura  
The fascinating temples at Anuradhapura - Ruvanvelisaya Dagoba (top left), close-up of the elephants (above) and Thuparama Dagoba (left).
Polunnaruwa  
Polonnaruwa Buddhas  
Polonnaruwa - the steps up to one of the temples.
Polonnaruwa - the huge stone buddhas.

Sat 22nd. We went to Sigiriya and climbed to the top. Also visited the Dambulla caves and Nalanda gedige.

Sigiriya  
Ascent up Sigiriya  
View from Sigiriya  
The amazing rock of Sigiriya -
(Top left)  An aerial view - yes, we climbed right to the top! 
(Above)  A section of the ascent - not an easy walk!
(Left)  Part of the view from the top when you get there.

Sun 23rd. We went to Kandy and visited the Temple of the Tooth. Stayed at the Mahaweli Reach hotel, near the river.

Kandy Botanical Garden  
Bats at Mahaweli Reach, Kandy  
Kandy lake  
Around Kandy -
(Top left)  A huge old tree in the Botanical Gardens.
(Above)  Bats on a tree branch overhanging the river near Mahaweli Reach.
(Left)  The tranquil lake in Kandy.

Mon 24th.  We looked round Kandy - the market, shops, and Queens hotel....

Greengrocers shop in Kandy  
Spice shop in Kandy  
Tea shop in Kandy  
(Above and left)  Some of the interesting shops around Kandy market.
Queens Hotel Kandy  
Kandy railway station  
The nice old-fashioned Queens Hotel in the centre of Kandy. Departure board at Kandy railway station.
Kandy lorry  
An optimistic lorry... fully insured? Let's hope so.

Then we drove to Nuwara Eliya and stayed at the Hill Club.

Tue 25th. Visited Horton Plains and World's End.

Wed 26th. Looked round Nuwara Eliya town and visited a tea plantation.
Hill Club Nuwara Eliya  
Hill Club Nuwara Eliya  
Having a cream tea at the Hill Club in Nuwara Eliya. Writing letters and postcards in the library at the Hill Club.
Vegetable stall Nuwara Eliya  
Meanwhile, out in the market, there are still vegetables for sale.

Thur 27th. Went back to Colombo.

Fri 28th. Flew to the Maldives and went to the Laguna resort.

Laguna Resort Maldives  
Wadhoo Island Maldives  
Relaxing on a tropical island - at the Laguna Beach Resort A typical coral island - Wadhoo Island in the Maldives.

Sat 29th. Visited Malé, the capital, on its own separate island.

Old mosque Male Maldives  
New mosque in Male Maldives  
Friday mosque, Male Maldives  
(Above and left)  A selection of old, new and unusual minarets in the town of Malé, capital of the Maldives.
Fishing boats Male Maldives  
Fishing boats Male Maldives  
Unloading the fish in the fishing harbour at Malé.....
Fishing harbour Male Maldives  
Fish on a bike Male Maldives  
A barrow-load of fish on its way somewhere from the fishing harbour. Dinner on its way home!
Marching band in Male Maldives  
A marching band in full uniform outside the presidential palace in Malé.

Sun 30th to Tue 1st Sept. At the Laguna Beach resort, Jamie and Sheila scuba diving.

Wed 2nd. Flew back to Colombo. Stayed at the 'old colonial' Galle Face Hotel.

Thur 3rd. Got the train to Galle, stayed at the New Oriental Hotel and had a fantastic meal at the Closenberg Hotel restaurant.

Gateway in Galle  
New Oriental Hotel in Galle  
Fishing port Galle  
(Top left)  The old gateway into the fortified city of Galle.
(Above)  The old colonial-style 'New Oriental' Hotel in Galle.
(Left)  The fishing port at Galle, seen from the city wall.

Fri 4th. Went to Matara at the southern tip of the island.

Matara Buddha  
Matara Buddha  
The huge, modern buddha at Matara..........
Vegetable stall in Matara  
Stilt fishermen at Ahangama Sri Lanka  
Yet another vegetable stall! This one's in Matara. Stilt fishermen on the south coast, on the way to Matara.

Sat 5th. Returned to Colombo. Had lobster thermidor at Mount Lavinia Hotel.

If you would like to read about our other travels, please click here ..... Globe