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Sri Lanka, Perl of the Indian Ocean, was seen by Marco Polo as one of the most beautiful islands of its kind. You will agree once you visited and explored this country.It is a country full of tropical beauty and thousands of breathtaking sights. Sri Lanka is a celebration for your senses, mountains full of tea plantations, multicolored rice fields, beaches full of palms, colorful parties, underwater gardens, cascading waterfalls, old cities and a relaxing life style. Come and see for yourself. . .
Located in the Indian Ocean just south of India, Sri Lanka is an island that is a popular holiday destination. Well known for its natural beauty, Sri Lanka has stunning beaches all along its coastline, great wildlife and biodiversity and a rich culture and heritage dating back several millennia. Sri Lanka was engulfed in a bitter civil war for 30 years between the government and the Tamil Tigers, who were fighting for an independent state for the Tamil speaking minority. The war officially ended in May 2009 when the Tamil Tigers were bloodily defeated.History Sri Lanka has more than 2,500 years of continuous written history by means of the Mahawansha, and was also mentioned in several ancient Indian texts. One of the most famous is the Ramayana, in which theisland, which was referred to as Lanka, was the island fortress of the king Ravana, who captured the wife of Rama an incarnation of the Hindu God, Vishnu. Legend has it that Hanuman the monkey flew over to Lanka and destroyed the capital by setting it on fire, while Rama and his remaining troops later crossed over from the mainland by building a land bridge across the sea.
There is however a school of thought, though largely unsupported, that Sita the wife of Rama, eloped with Ravana while Rama was away. It is argued by those who support this view that, this is why Rama subjected Sita to undergo an “agni pariksha” (test of fire) to prove her purity. Nevertheless, this theory is widely criticized by believers of Valmiki’s version of the episode. The Sinhalese arrived in Sri Lanka late in the 6th century BC, probably from northern India.
Buddhism was introduced starting from the mid-3rd century BC, and a great civilization developed in cities like Anuradhapura (kingdom from c. 200BCE to c. 1000CE) and Polonnaruwa (c. 1070 to1200). Other later notable kingdoms are the Dambadeniya, Yapahuwa, Gampola, Kandy and Jaffna Kingdoms.
Occupied by the Portuguese in the 16th century and the Dutch in the17th century, the island was ceded to the British in 1796, and became a crown colony in 1802. As Ceylon, it became independent in 1948; its name was changed to Sri Lanka in 1972.
Climate Since Sri Lanka is a tropical country, you can expect the rain anytime of the year in most parts. However, the two major rainy seasons are the North-East monsoon (October to January) and the South-West monsoon (May to July). Being an island, the climate of Sri Lanka changes dramatically from one part of the country to another. For example at Nuwara Eliya, in the hills of Central Sri Lanka, has a temperature around -5 to 20°C throughout the year, whereas Hambanthota, located in the dry zone, has a temperature consistently around 30-35°C. In general, Sri Lanka also has very hot temperatures all year long, which is why most Sri Lankan men wear sarongs while Sri Lankan women dress lightly with a long dress.
Terrain Mostly low, flat to rolling plain; mountains in south-central interior.Highest point: Pidurutalagala, 2,524m. Second highest peak: Kirigalpoththa (Horton Plains) 2,388m.Third highest peak: Thotupola Kanda (Horton Plains) 2,357m.
Sri Lanka Travel Guide
Sri Lanka, formerly known until 1972 as Ceylon, is an island country in South Asia near south-east India. Lying within the Indomalaya ecozone, Sri Lanka is one of 25 biodiversity hotspots in the world! Although the country is relatively small in size, it has the highest biodiversity density in Asia. A diverse and multicultural country, Sri Lanka is home to many religions,ethnic groups, and languages. It is famed for its stunning ancient Buddhist ruins, and its flavorful cuisine reflects its history as a maritime hub and cultural melting pot.
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