Backpacking Adventure through Sri Lanka

In May 2018, Lewis and I flew to Sri Lanka via Doha for a 10-day backpacking adventure.

I was super excited because I’ve never been backpacking before and I’ve never been to Asia before.

What? A travel blogger whose never backpacked Asia?! I know, I know. You can’t possibly be a travel blogger without backpacking Asia.

Sri Lanka looked like the perfect introduction to Asia for us. It wasn’t as touristic as places like Thailand but still held the cheap price-points, housed fantastic beaches and delicious local cuisine.

Our adventure would start in the city of Negombo and lead us through the capital city of Colombo to Kandy, the culture-capital of Sri Lanka, before heading via train to Ella. I mean I just had to visit Ella. Anywhere named after me must be pretty awesome. From Ella we would journey south for a spot of safari at Udawalawe before getting to see some of Sri Lanka’s most beautiful beaches such as Hiriketiya and Mirissa. We’d finally end our trip in Bentota, perched upon a stunning river, before returning to Negombo.

Below is a chronological list of all my blog posts from this trip.

Backpacking Sri Lanka Day 1: Arriving in Negombo

“Excuse me ma’am,” The air hostess repeated in soft tone. “Would you like some breakfast?” I lifted by head sleepily from my tray-table, blinking sleep out of my bleary eyes. I could just about make out her frame as she held the meal tray out. Out of the corner of my eye I could see… Read More

Friday, 21 December 2018

Bustling Colombo to Cultural Kandy Via Train

Jump To… I love to tell stories about how my adventures unfold. So if you want to read all bout my experience in-depth including getting to Colombo Fort from Negombo, picking up tickets etc, please read on! However, if you just want some cold, hard facts, you may wish to jump to it. 1. Everything… Read More

Saturday, 5 January 2019

Fast Travel: How Fast is too fast? – One Night in Kandy

The train hummed in the background as Lewis and I made our way down the platform, practically tripping over our tired feet. What a journey! I had thoroughly enjoyed every minute staring out of my train window and taking in the beauty of Sri Lanka. I had never been anywhere like it before. It was… Read More

Wednesday, 9 January 2019

How We Nearly Missed the Train from Kandy to Ella

I dreamt that night, like I did every night. A faint singing entered my delusions, its high pitched chimes growing ever louder. My vision faded and I drew myself back fo consciousness, confused to still hear the piano keys humming in the background. After rolling a little, it then occurred to me that this wasn’t… Read More

Saturday, 26 January 2019

Kandy to Ella: World’s Most Beautiful Train Journey

After a pretty hectic morning where we were almost forced to miss the train, we finally touched down at Kandy station. Our tickets were stamped and we were directed to the correct platform. At this point, I started to wonder what all the rush had been about as we were one of the first people… Read More

Sunday, 27 January 2019

Kandy To Ella: A Photo Essay – Part I

The train journey from Kandy to Ella was so scenic that I just couldn’t resist taking as many photos as possible. Therefore, as well as an article describing the journey itself, I’ve decided to include the remaining photos from the journey in this photo essay. I managed to condense 400 photos to 100 but cannot… Read More

Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Kandy To Ella: A Photo Essay – Part II

As promised, here is part 2 of my Kandy to Ella photo essay. If you haven’t seen part yet, I highly recommend you do so. As the title suggests, this is a photo essay. If you would like to read all about the train ride, you can do so here. I will also be writing… Read More

Sunday, 3 February 2019

Journey Through Sri Lanka’s Cloud Forests: Nuwara Eliya to Ella

The train rattled into Nuwara Eliya station. The breaks gripped the iron wheels and there was the squealing of metal against metal as the train jerked begrudgingly to a halt. At once the whole carriage erupted into a flurry of movement. The people opposite us, behind us, in front us us, everyone appeared to be… Read More

Friday, 8 February 2019

Discovering Paradise in Ella Town

It had been a strenuous day of travel. From our early wake up at 6am to the lengthy but absolutely mind-blowing 8 hour train ride through Sri Lanka’s beautiful countryside. Finally, we had arrived in the town of Ella, where we were to be staying for the next two nights. Ella is a gorgeous town,… Read More

Tuesday, 12 February 2019

One Day in Gorgeous Ella Town

Outside my drawn curtains, thick grey clouds, threatening rain, concealed the moon. The world below was draped in a blanket of serene darkness, wrapping around the gently swaying palms. The air was still, at first just disturbed by the gentle gurgling of a stream that passed in the valley below, flowing elegantly from the side… Read More

Saturday, 23 February 2019

Fresh Coconuts and Elephant Sightings from Ella to Udawalawe

Our time in the beautiful mountain town of Ella was short. After just 2 nights here, we were simply now ready to leave and awoke with a heavy heart. It felt like salt in our wounds to see the sun shining down across the valley, especially after the rainy two days we had experienced here.… Read More

Tuesday, 9 April 2019

Epic Safari in Udawalawe National Park

The dark grey clouds, thick with rain were surrounding us. I winced. Any moment now. Splat. The first drop of rain hit my arm which hung out the side of the open safari vehicle. Then another. And another. Before long a stream of fat water droplets were threatening to take over the back of the… Read More

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Hiriketiya Bay: Sri Lanka’s Hidden Gem

After an incredible safari in Udawalawe national park the day before (where we saw elephants, jackals, crocodiles and boars, to name a few), we were ready to set off to our next destination in Sri Lanka. So we waved goodbye to our lodge in Udawalawe and leapt in our taxi. Today we should be driving… Read More

Tuesday, 16 July 2019

Falling for Rotis but Having my Heart Broken by Beaches in Mirissa

It was a typical morning in Sri Lanka. And what a typical morning involves is being woken up at ridiculous-o’clock by some kind of racket on the street. This time it sounded like the neighbours were starting up a house-party at what I can only assume was 6am as the sunlight was only just starting… Read More

Thursday, 18 July 2019

Off the Beaten Track in Bentota, Sri Lanka

The shrill scream of a peacock sounded in my ears. It was a sound that sent shivers down my spine as I got immediate recollections from all those nature documentaries I used to binge-watch as a kid. Their sound is unmistakable, almost like a cry. The rain thumped on the canopy above us as we… Read More

Monday, 22 July 2019

The Worst 24 Hours in Sri Lanka

I woke up to a dull ache in my stomach. Groaning, I flipped over, hoping it would subside. But it only got worse. Beside me, Lewis was tossing and turning, his distress and pain evident. Eventually he couldn’t tolerate it any longer. “Bathroom.” He groaned feebly before stumbling towards the en suite. I rolled over… Read More

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Ella McKendrick on Black Rock Viewpoint, Kenmore Scotland

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