Sri Lanka... all you need to know
Sri Lanka - at a glance
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Map of
Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka...

Situated off the south east coast of India, Sri Lanka is an island of startling contrasts. Coral reefs and warm seas lead gently onto 1,000 miles of sandy beaches. Low lying coastal plains slope up into green hills covered with tea plantations, which rise into dramatic mountains, rocky gorges and crystal waterfalls. Add to this the mystery of an ancient civilisation, the remains of vast lakes, shrines, temples and monasteries and you will realise that Sri Lanka is quite unique. Formerly Ceylon, Sri Lanka has something to suit everyone, the markets and bazaars of Colombo, the picturesque hill town of Kandy where age-old customs are preserved and of course, the beaches - ideal for sun worshippers. The warm hospitality, fascinating culture and dramatic scenery make Sri Lanka a land like no other.

From North to South it has a maximum length of 435 km (270 miles) and at its widest point it measures 225 km. (140 miles), giving it a land area of 65,600 (25,000 sq.miles).


Sri Lanka has a population of 18.5 million of whom the majority are Sinhalese. Other ethnic groups are made up of Sri Lankan Tamils, Indian Tamils, Moors, Malays, Burghers (of Portuguese & Dutch descent) and others .Although a multi-religious country, Buddhists constitute the majority. Other religious groups are Hindus, Muslims and Christians Sri Lanka's literacy rate of 88.6% is one of the highest in Asia.

Sinhala and Tamil are official languages in Sri Lanka. English is widely spoken and understood. Place names and sign-boards on buses and trains are usually in all three languages. Sri Lanka is a land of religious freedom and tolerance. Wherever you travel you will come across a Buddhist Temple or Dagaba, a Hindu Kovil, a Christian Church or a Mosque, each with its own distinctive architecture. When visiting holy places please conform to the requirements as regards dress in order not to show disrespect.


The climate of Sri Lanka is typically tropical with an average temperature of 27°C. In the higher elevations it can be quite cool with temperatures going down to 16°C at an altitude of nearly 2,000 metres. Bright, sunny, warm days are the rule and are common even during the height of the monsoon - climatically Sri Lanka has no off season. The south west monsoon brings rain mainly from May to July to the western, southern and central regions of the island, while the north-east monsoon rains occur in the northern and eastern regions in December and January.

The country is six hours ahead of GMT.


Sri Lankan food is unique like it's Culture. Most of the Sri Lankans eat vegetables. The specialty in Sri Lankan food is that same food is differently made in different regions. With a large community of farmers the Rice and curry is the main food in Sri Lanka.

An average Sri Lankan meal always consist of leaves and dry fish, and several vegetable curries. They make special sweets with coconut milk, floor and Honey at cultural festivals of New Year, Vesak and Poson. And the main meal usualy is Rice and Curry, which is a spicy choice of meal.

The curries come in many verities of colors and flavors blended in Sri Lankan Hot Spices. Most of the species has a great ayurvedic value when used in curries.



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