Sri Lanka was an experience like no other.
I hope you’re prepared for this series like no other, if you’re in it now I hope you’re dedicated because you’re now in it for the long haul
(Get it? cause the journey there took us nearly 12/15 hours, I’m hilarious).
A bit of back story;
After having it booked since mid way through my placement year (nearly missing the deadline because full-time work makes you forget things like this apparently in my case) I was so excited to go and explore a new part of this world with the best coursemates, see new things and learn mainly about Sri Lanka and their natural disasters.
The main focus of our trip was to discover, discuss and look into Sri Lanka and how as a country it copes with and survives the natural disasters which occur throughout our lifetime.
The most prominent being the boxing day tsunami of 2004. Bare in mind this visit was made in 2019, they are still recovering.
After a 9.2 Magnitude earthquake rocked the indian ocean it was nothing but devastation afterwards. With over 230,000 dead or missing. towns swept away, agriculture destroyed and lives completely changed I wanted to understand how hard it was to rebuild and come back to normality in a country that may struggle.
This trip also made me reap the benefits of realising my god do I have it good. We take advantage of our way of living, it was time to see something completely different and enjoy the world for what it truly is.
Beautiful in Sri Lanka’s case.
The flight too;
The journey to Sri Lanka, I will be honest, wasn’t enjoyable. For me I love flying but I had never done a journey quite like it. As a girl with anxiety that is heightened due to lack of sleep I will certainly be taking the right steps when it comes to future travel long haul!
I loved flying with the girls! Myself and Mel met the girlies at the airport beforehand where we had pre-flight drinks, food and chills before heading over to the gate to flight number 1! Our journey was split into 2 flights, London Heathrow to Doha, Doha to Colombo!
Flight 1 was 6-7 hours and with Qatar, the seats were really comfy and of course lil TV’s to set us on our way for the flight! We then had an hour and a half in Doha to get from one gate to another. If you have ever been to Doha airport I hope you can understand when I say we were POWER-WALKING, that shit was FAR from where we landed to where we were re-boarding. The next flight number 2 was then 4/5 hours to Colombo Bandaranaike Airport. This flight consisted of me being incredibly grouchy and facemasks by the girls. They definitely helped me through it, especially Mel for sorting my shit out when I got too stressed on the flight. You girls are the bomb.
Having left the UK At 10pm UK time and landing the following day at around 5/6pm Sri Lanka time it was 5 and a half hours ahead of UK time. I would like to say the flight didn’t affect me and the main contender was jet lag but man the flight messed me UP. I was very pleased we had a few days to relax before the adventures and insight really started as we needed that good rest. Other food as well, having dinner, breakfast and lunch on the flights was a first and plane food is okay! But not an absolute delicacy for that many meals.
Where we were staying;
As there were 20+ of us on this educational trip and we were staying in Negombo, Colombo! We had a coach to take us too and from particular and planned places, and our feet and tuk tuks for our own free time get around!
Myself, Mel and 2 other girls ended up in our own separate guest house across the road from the main bulk of the group which was actually really nice when the end of the day came around as it was really quiet and small in comparison to everyone else in the other guest house. It was a different type of calm.
The main guest house was called the Ocean View Guest house, multiple rooms en suite, breakfast in the morning and dinner if you wanted it! We went over there every morning for breakfast and it was pretty basic but got us going for the day! Better than plane food. Breakfast was Eggs or fruit with toast (typically, ya girl doesn’t eat eggs), I loved the fruit, it was so fresh and delicious. It was really lovely there and especially clean!
Our separate guest house was called The Anna. This was the sister guest house to the Ocean View, all ran by the same humble and hospitable family! Both ran in the best condition, so polite and welcoming! I would definitely stay I both of these places again if/when I go back.
In our room we had two single beds so we pushed them together and shared a pink mosquito net (which did originally have mosquitos caught in the net already, we had fun killing those ones for sure). We had an en suite, the shower was also a dream at the end of the busy days we were having! The wifi didn’t reach our room and Mel and I really took advantage of this. It was lovely to relax with puzzle books, chatting shit and reading books before bed without our phones! It was a refreshing start to the experience and I couldn’t wait to get started!
Dinner Time on our first night!
Dinner was directly next to the hotel on our first night, The Seajoy!
It was all 28 of us on one long table! They placed Sri Lankan vegetable and curry dishes between us all and we picked and chose what we ate from. The food was SO delicious and ya girl was probably quite hangry by the time we ate. It was nice to be sat with everyone eating and relaxing all together now the whole group was in the country safe and sound!
The new few days are spent relaxing, recovering and exploring Negombo in 2 days of our own free time before the real activities started! You’ll hear about our first group meal and what us girlies got up too on our free days!
Stay tuned to hear more, especially about our impromptu Sri Lankan night out…