Sri Lanka Part 1 - Beautiful Beaches

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February 17th 2013
Published: June 25th 2017
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Beautiful Mirissa BeachBeautiful Mirissa BeachBeautiful Mirissa Beach

Yes, the dog on the beach you see was always there, either sleeping or hanging out waiting for hand outs from the restaurant owners.He and his buddies were regular beach bums. The were always mellow and bothered no one, but added a little more character to this paradise. Their other favorite spot to lay around was on the highway. Go figure.
Departing Bangkok, in the spirit of budget conscious travellers on the road for a long haul, we opted to take a less expensive but much longer flight to Colombo, Sri Lanka, one which had us in transit for twelve hours. The good news is that we got to spend some time in what has to be one of the world's most beautiful and largest airports in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, complete with lighting in the massive structure ceiling designed to look like a night sky. Most impressive. The bad news is we found ourselves once again burnt and jet lagged upon arrival, having not yet recovered from the last flight, and slept the entire first day in this new country, too tired to even get up to eat. Our immediate mission, then, was to find an appropriate beach where we could be brain dead for a few days, catch some rays, and get our travel legs in order.

We succeeded. We discovered what is perhaps our new all time ever favorite beach: Mirissa Beach. The trip getting here from Colombo took all day and involved three modes of transport - tuk tuk, bus, and train - so by the time we
Our Breakfast RestaurantOur Breakfast RestaurantOur Breakfast Restaurant

Every day began with Cinammon Tea and breakfast, watching the waves crash in.
got settled in our guest house and arrived at the beach, it was dark. I will never forget the feeling of stepping onto the beach area and discovering it twinkling with the candlelit tables of all the numerous little beachside restaurants, each displaying a variety of fish caught that day, ready to be prepared upon order. It was magical. All this against a backdrop of an extensive two mile stretch of perfect sand, warm but wicked waves constantly crashing, and cocoanut trees everywhere, with reggae music providing the perfect finishing touch.

We have been here for a week now, and will be moving on with the next sunrise, but it has been wonderful, and exactly what we needed. Our days here began drinking cinnamon tea over breakfast watching the waves crash and the beach dogs chase each other around. ( There are many dogs here - they don't appear to belong to anyone, but everyone here seems to treat them well and they are friendly and mellow.) Following breakfast we'd walk the beach until the heat convinced us that it was time to take on the challenge of going for a swim. I am not lying when I say
Our Guest HouseOur Guest HouseOur Guest House

I'm thinking he's a happy camper, and why not?
challenge. The Indian Ocean is not a gentle beast. Getting in the water for a swim involved much calculation and timing as to when to jump a wave, and when to dive into it, the objective being to get beyond the swells so you could actually swim. Failure to pay attention to the rhythm of the waves was costly. My first attempt at getting in was a miserable miscalculation, and I was promptly tossed into the sand and got a nice bruised behind to prove it. So we practiced daily, and soon got to the point where it was not necessary to get beat up to get through the waves, but always had to accept the inevitable fact that you would still be unloading a pile of sand from your suit at the end of the day.

At sunset, just before the candles were lit on those beachside dining tables, each restaurant would set out a broad assortment of sea food brought in from the fish boats daily. Our first night here we tried the red snapper, expecting to make crab or lobster a menu item to celebrate Valentine's Day later in the week. In the meantime we discovered
Walking Mirissa BeachWalking Mirissa BeachWalking Mirissa Beach

Every day, several times, this was a required activity.
an authentic, excellent little eight table Italian restaurant five minutes from our guest house, and became regulars. When Valentine's Day arrived and we went out to dine on the beach, I could not get my head around selecting victims to eat that were still moving, so I passed. Although we ended up eating seafood every night, it was always prepared in our Italian diner. There I ate the best calamari I have experienced in my entire life. Go figure.

Aside from the overall laid back vibe and beauty of this beach, Mirissa is renowned for the migratory whale route that is very near by, so we had to take part in a whale watching expedition during our time here. It was fantastic. We spotted a dozen whales during our morning out, saw about a half dozen tail dives, and at one point had two whales swimming alongside our boat. I was awestruck.

Another very special treat my honey Stan laid on me was an Ayurvedic head to toe body treatment. Sri Lanka is renowned for Ayurvedic Medicine, and people come here from around the world to study at the University in Colombo, as well as coming here from
Overlooking MirissaOverlooking MirissaOverlooking Mirissa

Daily destination point for the beach walk. Then turn and start over again. Simple decisions like this we like.
afar to take treatment. After Stan made an inquiry for a local therapist, our guest house arranged it and soon the Ayurvedic Doctor came to meet me, took me to her beautiful treatment centre home, and delivered me back two hours later. Very special treatment indeed.

We have been in Sri Lanka ten days now. During this time we have not been able to find a single negative about this beautiful country. The landscape is beautiful, the culture rich and colourful, and the people extremely warm and always ready to share a smile. Does it get any better than this?

We shall soon find out, as tomorrow we begin part two of the Sri Lankan adventure, our safaris. Having seen the whales, it is now time to go look for some leopards and elephants.

Yes, there will be photos posted eventually, when I next find myself in an Internet cafe. Note to Apple. Please install Adobe flash on your iPads.

Additional photos below
Photos: 14, Displayed: 14


Watching surfers Watching surfers
Watching surfers

This was a good wave day.
Crashing waves challengeCrashing waves challenge
Crashing waves challenge

Swimming was awesome. Beautiful warm clear water, bouncing around in the waves. . . but first, you had to fight them and get through them. Not easy. But fun.
Our Daily Cocoanut ProviderOur Daily Cocoanut Provider
Our Daily Cocoanut Provider

Every day we had a cocoanut served with a smile from this gentle man.
Tea Time on the Whale BoatTea Time on the Whale Boat
Tea Time on the Whale Boat

The day began at 6 am, with tea and breakfast being served, before setting out to sea to search for whales.
Off to find whalesOff to find whales
Off to find whales

The trip was all good. Good people, good whales sightings, good weather, although rough waves. Managed to avoid sea sickness. A good time. Kept thinking of Pi stranded on this same ocean, same skies. Yes, I know it was just a novel, but real nonetheless.
Our Italian RestaurantOur Italian Restaurant
Our Italian Restaurant

Who goes to Sri Lanka to eat Italian food? We did. Almost every night. So good.
Artistic Tuk TuksArtistic Tuk Tuks
Artistic Tuk Tuks

So many of the tuk tuks here are works of art, and frequently have positive messages airbrushed on them. This one carried a message that every day is a joy. Nice.
Magical Night LightsMagical Night Lights
Magical Night Lights

Imagine a mile of twinkling lights, set against a backdrop of crashing waves and reggae music, with a warm breeze blowing, and you are at Mirissa beach.
Setting up for the day Setting up for the day
Setting up for the day

Getting ready for another day in paradise

20th February 2013

Sounds amazing Bev!!! Wish I caught you before you left to say goodbye. I would wish you an amazing journey but I can see it already is!! Much love to you guys.

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