Paradise under the sea

Pigeon Island National Park is one of the two marine national parks of Sri Lanka. The national park is situated 1 km off the coast of Nilaveli, a coastal town in Eastern Province, encompassing a total area of 471.429 hectares. The island’s name derives from the rock pigeon which has colonized it. The national park contains some of the best remaining coral reefs of Sri Lanka. Pigeon Island was designated as a sanctuary in 1963. In 2003 it was redesignated as a national park. This national park is the 17th in Sri Lanka. The island was used as a shooting range during the colonial era. Pigeon Island is one of the several protected areas affected by the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004.

Pigeon Island consists of two islands; large pigeon island and small pigeon island. The large pigeon island is fringed by a coral reef, and is about 200 m long and 100 m wide. Its highest point is 44.8 m above mean sea level. The small pigeon island is surrounded by rocky islets. The national park is situated within the dry zone of Sri Lanka. The mean annual temperature is around 27.0 °C (80.6 °F). The annual rainfall ranges between 1,000–1,700 millimetres (39–67 in) while most of the rain is received during the North-eastern monsoon season from October to March.

Many of the 100 species of corals and 300 coral reef fishes recorded around the Trincomalee area are found in the national park. Juvenile and adult blacktip reef shark are seen around the shallow coral areas. Hawksbill turtle, green turtle and olive ridley are the visiting sea turtles of the coral reef. The island is important breeding ground for the rock pigeon.

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Pigeon Island, Trincomalee,Sri Lanka. Package Tour.

The crown jewels of the Sri Lankan tribe

Sri Dalada Maligawa or the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic is a Buddhist temple in the city of Kandy, Sri Lanka. It is located in the royal palace complex of the former Kingdom of Kandy, which houses the relic of the tooth of the Buddha. Since ancient times, the relic has played an important role in local politics because it is believed that whoever holds the relic holds the governance of the country. Kandy was the last capital of the Sri Lankan kings and is a World Heritage Site, mainly due to the temple Architecture.

The brick wall which runs along the moat and Bogambara lake is known as water waves wall. Holes in this wall are built to light coconut oil lamps. The main entrance gate which lies over the moat is called Maha-wahalkada. At the foot of Maha-wahalkada steps there is a Sandakada pahana (moonstone) which is carved in Kandyan architectural style. Maha-wahalkada was totally destroyed in a 1998 bomb blast and rebuilt afterwards along with sandakada pahana other stone carvings. Elephants are depicted in stone on the either sides of the entrance. A Makara Torana and two guardian stones are placed on top of the staircase.

Royal Palace

The royal palace is situated to the north of the temple. The royal palace is also known as “Maligawa.” There were three Wahalkadas and a 8 feet (2.4 m) high wall used as main entrances. The section of the palace facing the Natha Devale is said to be the oldest. During the beginning of the British period, it was used by government agent Sir John D’Oyly, 1st Baronet, of Kandy.. Today it is preserved as an archeological museum.

Audience hall

The audience hall or magul maduwa is where the Kandyan kings held their court.It was completed during the reign of Sri Vikrama Rajasinha. The carvings of the wooden pillars which support the wooden roof are an example of wood carving of the Kandyan period. Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha of Kandy built it in 1783. The hall was renovated for the reception of arrival of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales in 1872. Originally the hall was 58 by 35.6 feet (17.7 m × 10.9 m); after renovation, its length was extended by an additional 31.6 feet (9.6 m). Today it is used for state ceremonies and conserved under the department of archaeology.

Mahamaluwa

Mahamaluwa is public who came to see the annual Esala perahera. Today it contains a statue of Madduma Bandara. The memorial of which contains the skull of Keppetipola Disawe is another attraction. The statue of Princess Hemamali and Prince Dantha are also located here. On Wednesdays you can witness the Nanumura Mangalaya, where the sacred tooth is said to be washed in a sacred ceremony.

Tevava’ would mean a service ritual conducted daily at regular times of the day in the morning, noon and evening. It is similar to a Buddha-puja usually conducted in an image shrine. At the Dalada Maligawa, this happens twice a day; once in the morning and once in the evening.

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Sacred_temple_of_the_tooth, Kandy, Sri Lanka. Package Tour.

Step into a cave and step back into the past

Dambulla cave temple also known as the Golden Temple of Dambulla is a World Heritage Site (1991) in Sri Lanka, situated in the central part of the country. Dambulla is the largest and best-preserved cave temple complex in Sri Lanka. The rock towers 160 m over the surrounding plains. There are more than 80 documented caves in the surrounding area.

Major attractions are spread over five caves, which contain statues and paintings. These paintings and statues are related to Gautama Buddha and his life. There are a total of 153 Buddha statues, three statues of Sri Lankan kings and four statues of gods and goddesses. The latter include Vishnu and the Ganesha. The murals cover an area of 2,100 square metres (23,000 sq ft). Depictions on the walls of the caves include the temptation by the demon Mara, and Buddha’s first sermon.

Prehistoric Sri Lankans would have lived in these cave complexes before the arrival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka as there are burial sites with human skeletons about 2700 years old in this area, at Ibbankatuwa near the Dambulla cave complexes. In 1938 the architecture was embellished with arched colonnades and gabled entrances. Inside the caves, the ceilings are painted with intricate patterns of religious images following the contours of the rock. There are images of the Lord Buddha and bodhisattvas, as well as various gods and goddesses.

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Dambulla Rock Cave Temple , Sri Lanka. Package Tour.

Largest remaining fortress in Asia built by European occupiers.

Galle is a major city in Sri Lanka, situated on the southwestern tip, 119 km from Colombo. Galle is the administrative capital of Southern Province, Sri Lanka and is the district capital of Galle District.

Galle was known as ‘Gimhathiththa’ before the arrival of the Portuguese in the 16th century, when it was the main port on the island. Galle reached the height of its development in the 18th century, during the Dutch colonial period. Galle is the best example of a fortified city built by the Portuguese in South and Southeast Asia, showing the interaction between Portuguese architectural styles and native traditions. The city was extensively fortified by the Dutch during the 17th century from 1649 onwards. The Galle fort is a world heritage site and is the largest remaining fortress in Asia built by European occupiers.

Other prominent landmarks in Galle include the city’s natural harbor, the National Maritime Museum, St. Mary’s Cathedral founded by Jesuit priests, one of the main Shiva temples on the island, and Amangalla, the historic luxury hotel. Galle is home to the Galle International Stadium, which is considered to be one of the most picturesque cricket grounds in the world.

According to James Emerson Tennent, Galle was the ancient seaport of Tarshish, from which King Solomon drew ivory, peacocks and other valuables. Cinnamon was exported from Sri Lanka as early as 1400 BC, and as the root of the word itself is Hebrew, Galle may have been a main entrepot for the spice.

Galle had been a prominent seaport long before western rule in the country. Persians, Arabs, Greeks, Romans, Malays, Indians, and Chinese were doing business through Galle port. In 1411, the Galle Trilingual Inscription, a stone tablet inscription in three languages, Chinese, Tamil and Persian, was erected in Galle to commemorate the second visit to Sri Lanka by the Chinese admiral Zheng He.

The modern history of Galle starts in 1502, when a small fleet of Portuguese ships, under the command of Lourenço de Almeida, on their way to the Maldives, were blown off course by a storm. Realising that the king resided in Kotte close to Colombo, Lourenço proceeded there after a brief stop in Galle.

In 1640, the Portuguese were forced to surrender to the Dutch East India Company. The Dutch built the present fort in 1663. They built a fortified solid granite wall and three bastions, known as “Sun”, “Moon” and “Star”. After the British took over the country from the Dutch in 1796, the British preserved the fort unchanged and used it as the administrative centre of the district.

Galle features a tropical rainforest climate. The city has no true dry season, though it is noticeably drier in the months of January and February. As is commonplace with many cities with this type of climate, temperatures show little variation throughout the course of the year, with average temperatures hovering at around 26 degrees Celsius throughout

Popular Attractions in Galle

  • Galle fort
  • Flag rock
  • Dutch reformed church
  • Old gate
  • Marine archeological museum
  • Meeran mosque
  • Sudharmalaya temple
  • Dutch hospital
  • Amangalla
  • Main gate
  • Galle international cricket stadium
  • Sun bastion
  • National maritime museum
  • National museum
  • Point Utrecht bastion
  • Zwart bastion
  • All Saints Anglican church
  • Lighthouse
  • Dutch market
  • Clock tower
  • Lighthouse beach
  • Dutch Governor’s house
  • Muslim Saint’s tomb
  • Court square
  • Japanese Peace Pagoda
  • Jungle beach
  • Unawatuna beach

Don’t let your disability hold you back from paradise – Disability travel packages to Sri Lanka

Travel is an experience that enhances the quality of your life and we do not see why your disability should be a barrier to experience the magic of Sri Lanka. Our team will work closely with you and identify your interests and passions and develop a disability travel package to Sri Lanka that will allow you to realise it all. Through our network and in-depth knowledge of Sri Lanka, we will identify places to visit, hotels to stay and the best modes of transport. Further more, all our accomodation partners have been educated on the unique requirements. Even at places of interest, we have ground support at community level to enhance your travel experience through activities and excursions. And most importantly, our friendly staff will be your best friend and facilitator at every step of the journey from airport pickup to drop.

We are also capable of handling unique disabilities, single disability travels or even a group. We find great joy in being a part of your journey and being inspired by your own will to overcome the difficulties you face daily. And you can be assured of our sincerity and genuineness as the extended Foozoo family also has and had members with a disability and we take this part of our business seriously.

One of our ongoing CSR projects also revolve around collecting funds and providing financial and other assistance to Sri Lankans who are disabled, are persevering but sadly constrained by lack of resources or access. We are happy to have transformed the lives of 4 such individuals over the last few months by providing wheelchairs and other support.

Disability Travel packages to Sri Lanka is thus a definite example of our own philosophy at work.

Select a travel partner that cares about the destination – Sustainable Travel to Sri Lanka

With every successful tour we get to showcase the beauty of our island home. But with it we also bring visitors that add to the demand on resources and enhances the requirement for more development. While this means our Foozoo family earns a decent wage and our communities prosper, we cannot be complacent of the effects on our environment. This is why we care, offer solutions and keep the long-term sustainable aspect alive in everything we do.

For a team that is involved in reforestation, reducing waste and single use plastic, working with local communities and safeguarding an animals right to freedom, the sustainability aspect of our business is more than a buzzword. It is a philosophy we live by and a way of life we champion.

You can read more about this in our section titled ‘Ethical and Sustainable’ and discover how each tour integrates ‘sustainability’ to its core experience. You can also speak to us about the topic of sustainable travel to Sri Lanka and how each tour is considered and designed with these values and considerations.

Pet-friendly travek to Sri Lanka – A fantastic journey with your pet buddies

You would love to travel to Sri Lanka but unable to leave your pets behind? Well why not bring them over? If you can arrange to get to Sri Lanka we will take care of you and your pets from the arrival lounge to the departure lounge. We will work with our network and identify a tour that gives you and your pet the very best Sri Lanka has to offer. This includes staying at pet friendly hotels, offering pet friendly activities as part of the trip, provision of pet carriers. These are just some of the benefits of Pet friendly travel to Sri Lanka with Foozoo Travel.

The process begins with you letting us know about the kind of holiday you are looking at and the dates you wish to travel on. You will also have to fill us in about your pet/s and any specific requirements. Our team will then work with our local partners and identify the right places to visit and the best places to stay in. Sri Lanka, outside of Colombo is very much pet friendly. Although most big hotels will not be accommodating we know tonnes of places where your pet will be welcome.

We will then work with local authorities, seek transport providers and work out a plan that is both hassle free and worry free.

Foozoo Travel offers distinct LGBT tours to Sri Lanka that are coupled with both local insights and an understanding of the international LGBT traveller.

Sri Lanka is a unique destination when compared to other more popular LGBT destinations in the region. There is no big nightlife, gay streets or even a gay bar to hangout and make new friends. But for what it lacks in the traditional sense of a LGBT destination, Sri Lanka more than makes up with its welcoming hospitality and stellar levels of service.

Foozoo Travel’s tours to Sri Lanka are available as package tours listed here or you can have a plan curated to meet your specific requirements, dates and budgets. Our LGBT management and staff are happy to go to any length to make your holiday safe and full of experiences you will come to cherish for years to come.

Send us a message today and get started with your next holiday to LGBT friendly Sri Lanka.