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10 Unusual And Unique Things to In Sri Lanka That You Can't Miss


Sri Lanka is the perfect destination for anyone who loves nature and wants to explore history in one of the most heritage-abundant nation. The beautiful landscapes of Sri Lanka display a mesmerizing amalgamation of waterfalls, oceans, and jungles and there are a ton of things to do in Sri Lanka when visiting this stunning island. Take on an adventure to see the unseen and witness the hidden treasures of Sri Lanka with our top picks of offbeat activities to truly experience every single thread of this beautifully woven country.

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1. Experience Fishing With The Locals

One of the best of the best offbeat things to do in Sri Lanka, go on an adventure with the local fishermen and experience fishing with the experts. Not only a massive part of the local Srilankan culture, but fishing is also an important occupation for the country with a magnificent coastline. The country provides various tours and guides for you to experience the craft in the most authentic atmosphere. The local Fishermans are friendly and will happily help you to get familiar with the process. Make a point to experience the traditional stilt fishing in which the fisherman sits on their stilts and wait for the fishes to get trapped in the nets. Make sure you take on this adventure to experience a cultural essential and witness the true shades of Srilanka.

2. Taste Some Local Arrack

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Get yourself in good spirits by tasting the Lankan arrack. A locally made alcohol, this is one of the oldest distilled spirits in the world and Sri Lanka is one of its largest producers. This exquisite drink is usually made from fermented fruit or distilled molasses and you can try its various variations all over the country. The very famous coconut arrack is made from the fermentation and distillation of the sap of unopened flowers from a coconut palm and is famous all around the world. Try this classic drink with coconut water or ginger beer (a popular soda in Sri Lanka) and enjoy its fiery taste just like the locals.

3. Go Elephant Spotting

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With one of the largest population of Asian elephants in the subcontinent, Sri Lanka is the perfect place to go to elephant spotting. Make your way to various national parks across the country and enjoy watching this magnificent animal in all its glory. With around 25 national parks on this small island, the parks are very close to one another and you will be able to curate an elephant spotting trip without any worries. Kaudulla National Park and Minneriya National Park are both must-visits if you plan to go elephant spotting near the Sigiriya district. Yala National Park and Uda Walawe National Park are great choices as well if you want to explore the wild terrains along with the wildlife of the country.

4. Visit the Shark Point Reef

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One of the best places for inexperienced snorkelers to witness sharks in their natural environment. Go snorkeling on the coral reefs of the Pigeon Island National Park and spot reef sharks. The area- shark point reef- is a small space between the two islands of the national park. Known to be an epicenter for young and adult blacktip reef sharks, this place if perfect for amateur snorkelers as well as trained divers. You will be able to spot sharks from a couple of meters away in the water which is shallow with only a depth of one meter. You can view the spectacular coral reefs with a variety of species and also admire the beautiful coral fishes and pretty turtles.

5. Visit a Tea Factory

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Pay a visit to the tea factory and witness how the beautiful leaves are transformed into one of the most loved beverages in the world. Srilanka has several tea plantations and produces some of the most authentic and loved tea. Head to the countryside to experience the best of the tea plantations. You will be able to find many tours taking you through the tea making process. From the leaves in the tea plucker's baskets to the withering, fermentation, drying and sorting- you can witness every step of this elaborate process. Even though the process is modernized with time, you will be able to see machinery dating back to the British period. The factory visit would last for about an hour and you can also get a chance to buy the exquisite and fresh Sri Lanka tea at amazing prices.

6. Take a Walk Around The Slave island And Cinnamon Gardens

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One of the best ways to understand the history and vivid past of Sri Lanka is by taking a walk from the Slave Island to the Cinnamon Gardens in the city of Colombo. This walking tour is one of the best offbeat things to do in Colombo. A walk from the Gangaramaya Temple in Slave Island to the Independence Square in Cinnamon Gardens will give you a glimpse of the good old glory days of the city. On the walk, you will visit important landmarks such as the Seema Malaka, Gangaramaya Temple, Viharamahadevi Park, Colombo National Museum and Independence Square. Walk around the Cinnamon Gardens, also known as Colombo 7, which is a very historic and now a swanky residential and commercial area. With the best boutiques and rooftop bars, this place is a perfect end to your walk

7. Enjoy the Pettah Floating Market

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Experience the modern take on the age-old tradition of floating markets in the Pettah neighborhood of Colombo. A new development in the city, the canal was once filled with stinky water and warehouse residues. Now a relaxing area for a quiet walk with a variety of stores for shopping, the site provides a perfect opportunity for recreation and enjoyment. With modern wooden walkways and cemented paths, the market sells all sorts of groceries, electronics, handicrafts, and jewelry. You can buy souvenirs for your family and friends and also admire the beautiful view of the canal. You will be able to find many vendors selling traditional Sri Lankan street food which is a must when visiting Colombo.

8. Taste Sri Lankan Food

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Take a food tour to experience the flavorsome taste of the traditional and authentic Sri Lankan dishes. Sri Lankan cuisine is diverse with a variety of mouthwatering seafood and exemplary desserts. Savor the delicious palettes especially prepared by the locals and taste its delicious flavors. The tours are guided by experts of the cuisine and you can witness the locals cooking the food right in front of you. You can also take a guided class in cooking the local dishes and experience the diverse variety of food and drinks in the Sri Lankan culture. Perfect for ardent food lovers, these tours will take you through a journey to Sri Lanka like never before.

9. Hike Through a Cloud Forest

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Experience Sri Lanka's largest cloud forest at Horton Plains National Park. Located in the Central Highlands of Sri Lanka, the national park is a lush and dense biodiverse region acknowledged as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The landscape of the national park is so diverse it changes into something else every few kilometres. When viewed along with the lingering clouds, the entire view will take your breath away. The hike starts from the grasslands which give way to the forest. The path becomes more uphill as you gradually move forward with the hike. The 9-mile hike will take you through its exotic plants and trees and the various native mammals such as the Sri Lankan sambar deer and blue magpie.

10. Explore the Brief Garden

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Created by the exemplary landscape designer Bevis Bawa, the Brief Garden is a masterpiece by the brother of the very famous Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa. This space was inherited to Bevis from his family as a rubber plantation and he spent a great amount of time converting it into a modern jungle-inspired landscape. The design and picturization of the gardens are so spectacular that the memory of the location will be with you for a lifetime. The garden is enchanting and dream-like and you can see plants beautifully covering the small houses gracefully. Plants are potted in beautifully pottery and the flowers are intelligently planted to exenterate the delicate charm of this ensemble.

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