While visiting a new country is interesting and exciting, understanding the culture can be challenging. Some things are very obvious and easy to get used to, while there are certain other things that you’ll probably never get used to. Here’s a list of 7 things locals usually do but will be an exciting new experience for visitors.
Enjoy a Sri Lankan dinner from a street restaurant
Sri Lankan meals have gained global popularity with their blend of flaming spices, creamy curries, rich flavours and unique textures. The yummy dishes of Sri Lankan cuisine provide the country’s visitors with exotic eating experiences. Here are a few dishes you must try in Sri Lanka.
Pol roti with pol sambol and ambul thiyal (sour fish curry) – Pol roti is made by mixing floor with scraped coconut, water and salt and roasted on a flat pan over fire. Pol sambol is a mixture of coconut, red/green chilies, chillie, onions, Maldive fish and salt.
Appa (hoppers) with miris malu (hot fish curry) – Hoppers are made of a stirred up batter, usually made of rice flour and coconut milk with spices. The dish is pan-fried without much oil over fire.
Bittara Appa (egg hoppers) – Egg broken into hoppers .
Kottu & Elawalu (vegetable) roti (kottu and vegetable roti) – There’s a reason why Chicken Kottu Roti is very insanely popular in Sri Lanka! Chopped flatbread mixed and mashed together with chicken and vegetables and lots of aromatic spices. You can have your choice of beef, chicken, mutton , vegetable or cheese kottu.
Indiappa with malu curry and seeni sambol (string hoppers with white fish curry and fried onion) – A lacework of noodles made with roasted rice flour and steamed to perfection. Enjoy it with tasty spicy seeni sambol (fried onions) and a gravy of your choice.
Visit the busy alleys of Pettah (Street Market)
Pettah market is the busiest place in Colombo, and the largest market. It is a network of complex lanes and alleys lined with stalls and stores, selling jewelry, vegetables, meat, clothing and household appliances. Each street is dedicated to different trades; Sea Street is one of the most familiar. It is the gold market of Pettah. All stores of Pettah have sell various goods at a very reasonable prices but one must remember to bargain in order to get a good deal while making sure what you buy is worth the price you pay. Pettah market is the heart of the district; it is a lively place. Some areas are not very tidy or clean. It’s a riot of sights and sounds, which can be overwhelming at first, but it leaves you in wonder and excitement.
Visit the night market at Green Path
A unique addition to Colombo’s nightlife. Although not on all days, you might be lucky enough to be in Colombo at a time when the night market is taking place at Green Path. It’s a unique addition to Colombo’s nightlife as you experience shopping together with some local tasty treats that the stalls have on offer. Treat yourself to a wide variety of some amazing food ranging from short eats, snacks, drinks and local dishes. Getting familiar to the environment, you will witness a large crowd of locals that flocks together at this very lively night market. It’s a great place to shop for some local artisanal items ranging from hand-woven clothing, bags, accessories and handcrafts such as ornaments. Treat yourself to a wide variety of some amazing food ranging from short eats, snacks, drinks and local dishes.
Visit a Local pub – Honey Beach Club
There are days that you hate to dress up. Like to wear something relaxing and have fun with friends? Get the real feeling. Visit Honey Beach Club where locals frequent. It will be a nice way of getting to know a new country.
Take a ride in a 3-wheeler
Sri Lankan 3 wheelers are common in all towns, and even in most villages. Some are metered (mostly in Colombo). You can count on most taxi rides costing around Rs 60 to 100 per kilometre. Hotels in Colombo and restaurants can usually get you a ride for a reasonable cost. In Colombo, you can count on taxis dispatched via apps such as PickMe or Uber. Riding in a 3 wheeler in a busy street is a fun activity you should not miss. There are mobile apps similar to Uber which you can use to book your tuk tuk and don’t forget to always use Google maps to know the best route to reach your destination.
Visit the Good Market at Diyatha Uyana
Diyatha Uyana, the Good Market, is located next to the Parliament roundabout and Water’s Edge in Battaramulla. The Good Market stalls are in a beautiful recreational area that overlooks the Diyawanna Oya reservoir. The Good Market has become a place to meet friends, enjoy a family outing, and find a range of healthy, environmentally-friendly products. The market offers “Poison-free” fruits and vegetables, crafts, food and snacks, natural health and beauty products, home and garden products .The food courts offers Sri Lankan, Chinese and Western dishes.
Visiting Gangarama temple
Gangarama temple is only accessible by crossing a wooden bridge. It’s famous for its grand buildings, and is complete with a chetiya, bo tree, image house, Simamalaka, museum, library, pirivena, and residential, education and alms halls. The Nawam Perahera, conducted by the Gangarama temple is a major tourist attraction. The perahara was initially started in 1979 and has been held uninterrupted in the month of February since then. This beautiful festival of arts has over 1,000 performers and over 100 elephants brought from different parts of the island.