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ig_rfc
Post subject: East and North of Sri Lanka
PostPosted: 19:43 on 16th Sep 2012

Joined: 00:32 on 7th Dec 2011
Posts: 51
After going to Sri Lanka for the test match in Colombo I fancy going back with my girlfriend next year just to see more of the country. I thought it would be nice to see the East and the North(if possible) instead this time after seeing Mt Lavinia, Negombo, Colombo and Kandy while over for cricket.

Ideally will be going for two weeks in August time and will be hoping to take in the cultural triangle, hot springs of Kanniya, Arugum Bay and Trincomalee and surrounding area. Looking for at least a week at a beach, probably either Uppuveli or Arugum Bay.

How difficult is it to get to the East of the country and is there any places that should be considered must see or places we should look at staying?
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Cheshire_Dave
Post subject: Re: East and North of Sri Lanka
PostPosted: 10:32 on 17th Sep 2012

Joined: 12:30 on 3rd Sep 2012
Posts: 7
Id post that post again on tripadvisor forum in the Sri Lanka section. There is a couple of experts on Sri Lanka there who answer you very quickly. Extreamly useful source of information. I am hoping to see a few of those places you mentioned this week so I will let you know how I get on.
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Big Harvey
Post subject: Re: East and North of Sri Lanka
PostPosted: 10:38 on 17th Sep 2012

Joined: 09:14 on 23rd Apr 2008
Posts: 2343
ig_rfc Wrote:
After going to Sri Lanka for the test match in Colombo I fancy going back with my girlfriend next year just to see more of the country. I thought it would be nice to see the East and the North(if possible) instead this time after seeing Mt Lavinia, Negombo, Colombo and Kandy while over for cricket.

Ideally will be going for two weeks in August time and will be hoping to take in the cultural triangle, hot springs of Kanniya, Arugum Bay and Trincomalee and surrounding area. Looking for at least a week at a beach, probably either Uppuveli or Arugum Bay.

How difficult is it to get to the East of the country and is there any places that should be considered must see or places we should look at staying?


I can't pretend to be an expert on the Eastern and Northern bits, but the places you mention are normally easy enough to get to, just rather time-consuming! There's an overnight sleeper train that goes to Trincomalee from Colombo. People I spoke to who did it during the World Cup said it was OK. It arrived a bit late, but given the fact it's booked to arrive at 5.10 in the morning, they didn't see that as a bad thing!

Arugum Bay is messier (although perfectly possible) to get to by public transport. It seems most overseas visitors just get a taxi though. Ask around to see if anyone else fancies going so you can share one. Otherwise, if you've got time on your hands, you could get the train to Ella, stop overnight, and get a bus from there to Pottuvil. You'll probably need to get a tuk-tuk to get from there to Arugum Bay itself. I don't have up-to-date bus info, but there used to be (and probably still is) a direct bus from Colombo to Pottuvil that leaves very early in the morning, 4.45 am I think. It used to take 11 hours, but with road improvements it might be a bit quicker now.
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Maidenover
Post subject: Re: East and North of Sri Lanka
PostPosted: 11:31 on 18th Sep 2012

Joined: 09:13 on 23rd Apr 2008
Posts: 2913
BH is correct as usual, for all general travel advice, and especially regards the fact that road improvements are moving at pace.

If I were planning this I'd probably go from Colombo to cutural triangle (overnight), then onto Habarana for an (brownie point) elephant ride (overnight) and onto Trinco before going down to Arugum Bay. I'd be travelling by car/driver. If doing it by public transport BH's idea might be the option.

If you visit the springs expect to get wet. Locals just splash about. Apart from the obvious hot water it, like much of the things in Trinco and surrounding areas, are only now gearing up for tourists again after the war. Last visited in the October 2009 and at that time they weren't really ready for increased numbers of tourists. I'd guess it has changed a lot since ...
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Franksy76
Post subject: Re: East and North of Sri Lanka
PostPosted: 10:19 on 22nd Sep 2012

Joined: 10:10 on 22nd Sep 2012
Posts: 3
Not sure about the East, but I also note that you mentioned the north.

I was there back in April this year for the tests, and after the colombo test I went to Anurhadapura. From there I travelled north to Jaffna, its eay to do from Anurhadapura, about 5 hours on the bus. There isnt a huge amount to see in Jaffna (one full day is ample), but im glad I did it for the experience, and to see the old Tamil heartland. On the way up you see remnants of the war, and you go thru Kilinochi, which is where much of the fighting towards the end of the war took place, and many of the war crimes. If you go, try and watch John Snow's Sri Lanka: Killing Fields, which has been aired twice on channel four (you might get it on 4OD on t'internet)

Regarding beaches, its on the south coast, not the east, but Mirissa was easily the best beach I went on in Sri Lanka.

Another nice place I visited was Ella up in the hills, bit of a bugger to get to. The Adams Peak climb was probably the highlight of my Sri Lanka trip.

Have a great trip, and enjoy some Kotthu Rotti, it really is delicious

Mark
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