Journeys » Sri Lanka (Journeys) » Sri Lanka - 2015

Schoolgirls in white

SRI LANKA - AT THE VERY HEART OF BUDDHISM

In October 2015, I joined again OKTAY OKTAY ORTAKCIOGLU on a Photo trip to Sri Lanka. 

I felt I had to keep at it, now that I had a vague idea of what Aperture, Shutter Speed, ISO meant. They did sound more familiar. By the end of the trip, I could see improvements. It is after this trip that I decided to squander my kids' inheritance!

MY MAGIC MOMENT!

Seeing how gracious all those children looked dressed in white for school

From Negombo, close to the capital Colombo, we drove to the iconic Rock of Sigiriya Hundreds of steep steps lead to the top. Have an Early start. IT’S HOT

HANDS OFF GRAFFITI, PRISON SENTENCES ARE LONG AND HARSH.

In the town of Kandy home to the Sacred Tooth Temple, we were very lucky to be around when dancers, musicians, and elephants took to the streets to celebrate the full moon. So hang around for that full moon…Ours was in late October.

The itinerary included the waterfalls in Ella, Nuwara Eliya with its Welsh-cottages, tea pickers and the fishing village of Weligama famous for its fishermen on stilt. Coasts of Sri Lanka are famous for fishing, surfing, relaxing. They are beautiful, clean, and the people very nice, plenty of Tuc-Tuc, and cafes and restaurants are starting to flourish.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW

Traveling for Photography means that permission to photograph local people at work, otherwise impossible,  is all looked after by the agency or by the leading photographer. Some of our money is passed on to local communities. It is the new Tourism.

The fresco paintings in the ancient caves at the Sigiriya were fascinating. According to the legend the illegitimate king of the land hiding at the rock from the legitimate king that wanted him dead ordered a portrait of every woman in the village:  topless!! 

If you see a dummy hanging off an unfinished building it has got to do with the superstitious belief that hanging up a scarecrow can ward off the evil eye cast by the jealous neighbors or ill-wishing relatives but also to fend off evil spirits. The very same applies to newborn babies with black smudges on their faces to make them look ugly and ward off envious people casting a bad spell. 

FLIGHTS

  • ISTANBUL, MALDIVES (TOUCH DOWN), COLOMBO

 

MY TIPS

  •  Sri Lanka is well worth visiting. Clean sea, clean coasts, surfing.
  • Watch out for unsafe features especially if traveling with children.
  • Safety and Health laws are not the same as at home.
  • Banisters on balconies can be very low  
  • The gap between bars far too wide.  
  • Hotels are very basic. Be prepared to eat lots of lentils.
  • There are packs of dogs, which are best avoided.  
  • Since the British left numbers of wild Elephants are doubling dangerously.
  • Farmers have to shoot them down when they trample through their paddy fields.
  • Watch those monkeys.

 

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