The pristine beaches of the south coast of Sri Lanka draw people from all over the world. But this patch of paradise is attractive to a different kind of traveller too - whales and dolphins on their way through Sri Lankan waters from the Bay of Bengal to the Arabian Sea. And November to April is the best time to see them.
It can bring tears to the eyes, but no Sri Lankan meal is complete without it. From dusk to dawn, the fiery chilli takes pride of place at tables across the land. Fresh from the tree, dried in the sun or ground into powder, chilli is an addiction for Sri Lanka's fire-eating, finger-licking, tear-wiping natives, who pray thrice daily to the gods of the kitchen for a miracle capable of turning even the blandest of meals into a red-hot gastronomic delight.
While traversing lowland Sri Lanka, the sudden appearance of a white, dome-shaped stupa above the glistening coconut fronds is an enduring sight. They can be found in the highlands too, breathtakingly perched on cliff-tops. Some are incomplete, some are full of idiosyncrasies, all have a rich and fascinating history.
The month of January captures the freshness of the new year the world over. In Sri Lanka, the mood is amplified in anticipation of thanksgiving celebrations for the paddy harvest of the Maha cultivation season, the country's main crop cycle.
The modern city of Galle is a booming urban centre like many of Sri Lanka's smaller cities, but its grand historic fort - declared by UNESCO "the best example of a fortified city built by Europeans in South and Southeast Asia" - makes it stand out from the crowd.
The first phase of Piliyandala Town Development Project which aims to make it Colombo’s main transport centre has been launched. One of the main aims of the project is to control the traffic which enters Colombo City.
Pettah, in Colombo, is a bustling business district selling miscellaneous goods, where almost anything under the sun is sold at amazingly low prices. It is like a woven tapestry of organised operations, each dependent on one another.
In Sri Lanka, country cooking begins with a plate of wholesome rathu buth, kiri hodi, pol sambal, mallung and a fish curry. This simple meal, embraced and loved across the island, is a firm favourite among the farming community.
It was in the 3rd Century BC that the teachings of the Buddha were first introduced to the Island by the son of India's Emperor Asoka, Arahant Mahinda. King Devanampiyatissa, who received India's greatest gift to Lanka during his reign, chose Dimbulagala as one of the first places in the island to build a temple.