My first week in Sri Lanka has centred around the amazing archeological sites where ancient Sinhalese dynasties set up their first capitals.
Based in Habarana, I headed out in a different direction each day.
Sigiriya wins for the most dramatic first impression. Rising up from the plains, it is visible for miles.
The top was the site of a royal palace in the 5th century AD.
View coming in from the main entrance of the park.
Through the water gardens.
And the boulder gardens
And up, up, past the Mirror Wall where old ‘graffiti’ recorded their life, to the carved Lion Paws.
In contrast, Polonnaruwa is a sprawling complex from the late 10th century.
Gal Vihara carvings
Buildings of the Quadrangle
Anuradhapura is another massive complex where the tuk tuk ride between buildings was necessary.
Dissa, my reliable tuk tuk driver, and his wife
Monkeys everywhere, including my veranda
I spent the first two nights in Columbo, where this temple was the only quiet spot I found!
Kottu is a mix of chopped paratha bread with vegetables (chicken or seafood optional) glued together with coconut milk
The lodge were I stayed in Habarana was more isolated so had their buffet. I’m not usually a fan, but they had an amazing choice done well. There was even a refrigerated room for fruit and desserts! Unfortunately plates are not photogenic.
This is an egg hopper with a thin crispy rice flour base
Now off to Kandy!