In Sanskrit “Lanka” means “the country, the region,” and the prefix “Sri” in South Asia is added to emphasize respect. Thus, the name of this exotic state can be translated as “Blessed Land.” Prior to 1972, Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon, and has long been famous for the world’s best tea and spices such as – cinnamon, curry and cardamom. Residents of the island still keep the traditions. Sinhalese continue to grow elite varieties of tea, cultivate rice fields, extract the precious stones like sapphires, rubies, garnets and engage in traditional crafts by making wicker furniture and batik on cotton. The blue of the ocean and the sky, overgrown with vines and dense mangrove jungles, picturesque mountain waterfalls, rushing streams with high cliffs, lost cities and ruins of Buddhist temples form a bright palette of landscapes of Sri Lanka. Trees abound in extraordinary fruits, and elephants walk the streets alongside cars.
Sri Lanka is one of the most popular tourists destination. There are a lot of places of interest here that can draw visitors attraction.
In Sri Lanka, there are 21 National Park and numerous religious and historical sites. In the center of the island rock fortress of Sigiriya known as “Lion Mountain” rises. It was a former residence of the king Kasap (V c. AD). It is decorated with frescoes which haven’t lost their rich colors. No less interesting for visitors of the island is the historic city of Anuradhapura with rising high stupas and stone sculptures of Buddha. Place of pilgrimage for tourists is the Bodhi tree which was grown from the sprout of a sacred tree, meditating under which the Buddha reached enlightenment.
Also to the cultural attractions of the island belong Polonnaruwa – medieval capital of the state, a Buddhist temple of Dambulla (I BC) walls of which are painted with religious paintings. In the city of Kandy, in Dalada Maligawa temple houses, the most precious relic of the island – the Relic Tooth Of Budda is kept in seven golden chests. Only titled persons like Queen Elizabeth can visit the “Hall of adorable species” – the repository of relics. Once a year, at the beginning of August, the Esala Perahera festival, during which the colorful procession, led by an elephant carrying on his back the Tooth Relic in a casket, walks the night streets of Kandy.
On this island golden beaches and stunning Royal Botanic Gardens in suburbs of Kandy are always at the disposal of tourists. Here You can find the melodious singing birds, monkeys jumping on the branches of the trees or flying foxes rushing through the trees. There are about 175 species of palm trees in the garden, and more than 100 orchids. Just getting in the highlands of Nuwara Eliya, you forget that you are on a tropical island – average temperature of the mountainous areas is 16°C, and at night it falls to 10°S. In this area, at the altitudes of 2400-2800 m tea plantations are grown. Pointed houses, the Anglican Church, mansions, built in the colonial style, and well maintained green lawns create an atmosphere of British heartland. At the resort Nuwara Eliya the club with an 18-holes for golf is opened. And the racecourse is also opened and here you can take part in horse racing which takes place in April. Come here and enjoy unforgettable views of this remote but so beautiful and cozy island.