Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is one hell of a beautiful island. From scenic train journeys through lush tea plantations to monkey-filled jungles and white-sand beaches, this country has it all. After spending just a few weeks in India’s teardrop we were itching to return and explore more of its treasures. Here are some stories from our introduction to this paradisical island, where we took a two-week journey, starting from Colombo to Dambulla, where we stayed in a jungle hideaway and explored cave temples. Next up, we took a safari at Kaudulla National Park and moved on to Kandy, the country’s second-largest city. From there, we took the famous train journey to the mountain town of Ella for some hiking and incredible view points.

As the year draws to a close and we prepare to leave for South America in January, it’s time to take a look at our 2017 travel roundup. I feel incredibly blessed to have enjoyed yet another year full of new experiences, adventures and travel. In 2017, we managed to live in Thailand, trek to Everest Base Camp, explore Sri Lanka and road-trip around Europe. We got married, went vegan, continued to earn a living remotely and, of course, blogged about it all.
It was late afternoon in Polonnaruwa, a Sri Lankan city filled with ancient ruins, and a meandering bicycle trip had led us to the lake just in time for sunset. We parked up and watched as the sun sank behind distant hills, streaking the sky with buttery oranges and yellows. As the daylight faded I felt a swell of gratitude for that perfect travel moment, for having the freedom to experience the simple beauty of a Sri Lankan sunset.
Since we left the UK in 2013, Andrew and I have stayed in hundreds of hostels, hotels, guesthouses, apartments and Airbnb places. While some have been incredible, like our five-star honeymoon suite in Thailand, we’ve also stayed in some real dives and battled with bedbugs more than once. Here’s a look at five of the most unusual travel stays we’ve experienced to date, from a longhouse in Malaysia to a lavish London pig sit.
We’ve stayed in some pretty special places while travelling, including a boat on the Bay of Islands in New Zealand, a wood cabin in Maine and a chic apartment in Chiang Mai. When it comes to fancy accommodation though, Sri Lanka wins hands down. We started our trip with a stay in a secluded jungle hideaway and continued with perhaps our most lavish hotel experience ever at the Theva Residency.
After a tranquil stay in our jungle hideaway, Kandy was an assault on the senses. Cars and colourful tuk tuks choked the roads as our driver stuttered through the modern centre of Sri Lanka’s second-largest city. Although the streets were crammed with people and noise, they were also surrounded by forested mountains and in the distance, Kandy Lake lay sparkling like a jewel in the city’s heart.