30ºC / 86ºF
In the classical language of Sanskrit, the name Sri Lanka
translates as ‘splendid island’, and no title could be more fitting for this
small nation. With eight different UNESCO Heritage Sites that cover both
manmade structures and unique natural formations, the island offers a plethora
of things to explore.
When Marco Polo first came to Sri Lanka, he was accompanying the Mongolian emperor Kublai Khan in the search for the relic known as ‘the Tooth of Buddha’. The invading forces failed in their quest, but the island had made a lasting impression on the young Italian explorer, who later returned here. Today the sought-after relic is kept in the stunning city of Kandy. A former capital of the Sinhalese empire, this fortress city stands out with its white buildings gleaming against surrounding mountains and treelines. Further exploration of the ancient kingdoms of Sri Lanka can be made through visits to the ancient ruins and structures of Polonnaruwa, Anuradhapura and the ‘sky-palace’ of Sigiriya – a fortress that was built on top of a rock towering over the neighbouring flat landscape.
Sri Lanka is also home to lush tea plantations and magnificent national parks, both of which are available to visit through guided tours. Herds of elephants pace through the sunburnt greenery of the Udawalawe National Park, and guides will take you up close to these majestic creatures. You may also be able to catch a glimpse of crocodiles basking by the banks of the park’s reservoirs. Alternatively, head to the Yala National Park, which boasts the largest regional population of leopards, monkeys and exotic birds.
After exploring the island’s mainland, relax along the white beaches of Arugam Bay and Bentota. Take a dip in the Indian Ocean, go snorkelling or SCUBA-diving, or relax under a palm tree with a glass of cold passionfruit juice in hand. To experience the Sri Lankan cuisine, tuck into a good, spicy Sri Lankan curry that is more coconut-based than its Indian counterpart. Dishes such as lamprais (rice and meat folded and steamed in a banana-leaf), hoppers (pancakes) and sour fish curry should also be eaten in copious amounts — but beware, Sri Lankans do like their food spicy!
Permeating every particle of Greek culture is its rich heritage of history and mythology. Regardless of where you choose to holiday in Greece, you’re never far from a place that in one way or another is linked to one of the great gods like Zeus, Aphrodite or Poseidon, or the historical setting of fabled demigods and heroes like Hercules, Perseus and Odysseus.
The Moroccan metropolis is a plethora of colours, tastes, scents and of course sounds. Visiting the city will leave you with an infinity of impressions and regardless of where you move in the centre of Marrakech, you’re never short of new experiences. During your stay in this amazing city, sometimes you’ll need a space where you can just relax and enjoy the silence for a bit. Luckily there are numerous options for you to choose between, and below we have selected four things for you to do when you want a break from the hustle and bustle of the souks.
Every year on the 17th of March the planet glows in a special green hue, in honour of the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick. Throughout the world, millions of people gather to celebrate everything Irish and the most famous festivities take place in New York City, Boston and of course Dublin. With lots of activities and performances taking place during the weekend around St. Patrick’s Day, we’ve chosen some of the main things that you can do, if you find yourself in Dublin during these joyful days. Check out more events here: http://www.stpatricksfestival.ie/