Tag Archives: Sri Lanka

Eating Sri Lanka (2)

Sri Lankan cuisine became one of my favourite foods ever since first visiting in 2007; I ate very well this time round too.

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On a Hot Day in Colombo

Colombo cat

Negombo, Sri Lanka

One of my favourite places in the world: the port town of Negombo in west Sri Lanka.  It is also a tourist spot with travellers often starting or ending their trip to Sri Lanka here as the international airport is close by.  There is a nice sand beach opening out onto the Indian Ocean and to the south of the town, the Negombo lagoon with mangrove swamps lining its southern shore.

The people of Negombo are intimately connected with the sea: the town’s largest industry is commercial fishing, ahead of even tourism, and Dutch fluyts and Portuguese caravels left their mark long before the British arrived, both physically – there is a Dutch-built fort overlooking the harbour and a Dutch-cut canal long enough to take you to the next town – and spiritually, with the town being home to a very large Roman Catholic community. Many, many locals will answer to  names such as Joseph or Jude and Negombo is often referred to as ‘Little Rome.’  At almost every street corner there is a roadside Catholic shrine, this particular one devoted to a somewhat nautical Virgin Mary, keeping a watchful eye on those at sea.

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In the Dambulla rain

The Lord Buddha is watching you; at the Golden Temple.

golden temple Buddha

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Eating Sri Lanka

I ate rather well when I was in Sri Lanka. Although I was unable to explore the full spectrum of Sri Lankan cuisine – I didn’t have a chance to eat hoppers for example, or try Tamil food – I thoroughly indulged myself in some local specialties.

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Fishing Sri Lanka (Indian Ocean: Negombo coast)

Before flying back to Tokyo I stayed one night at the fishing village Negombo (map) which is on the west coast of Sri Lanka, about 15 miles north of Colombo.  It is a wonderful place and I would have loved to stay there longer.  Since I was leaving on an overnight flight I had a morning spare, so I walked into the nearest tourist agents office and booked a fishing boat to take me out for a few hours.  It cost Rs.7500, and included everything (boat and crew for five hours on the water, licenses/paperwork, all tackle and bait and pickup/drop-off at hotel).  All I needed to do was bring drinking water, and be waiting for them at 5.30am outside my hotel the following morning.

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