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DansDeals Forum => Trip Reports => Topic started by: ponash123 on August 20, 2018, 02:58:58 PM

Title: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 20, 2018, 02:58:58 PM

Welcome to Sri Lanka - a diamond in the rough!
Still recovering from their 30 year civil war, which ended in 2009, this country is fighting its way to development and it's fascinating to see.
With no Zika, beautiful beaches, mountains, safaris, rain forests, timeless ruins, and welcoming people, this was a great way for us to experience Asia.

The current exchange rate is 160 Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR) to 1 USD, so most items end up being really cheap.

The weather was much better than expected (albeit slightly hormonal), being that the summer is monsoon season. It really depends on which part of the country we were in, but the weather forecast was completely untrue, as it showed rain every single day, all day.
There were definitely a couple of downpours, but in general it rained basically every day but usually only for a couple of minutes. It was sunny 30 seconds after the rain, and the humidity was not bad at all. In The Hill Country it was much cooler, and we had generally pleasant weather.

There are numerous sim card options, but Dialog is the easiest and best, and most accessible throughout the country if you need to refill. We bought a sim card for safety reasons, though I don't think we used it once as we had wifi in the hotels and car.
Our total cost for the sim card for 8 days was under $2, which included the sim card ($1) and minutes for local time, which served our purpose.
Important to note that Verizon service and T Mobile were both a bit spotty, for those relying on the $10 a day plan (not recommended since the sim card is a fraction of the cost).
Some may prefer to purchase minutes for international calls which would cost more. The basic tourist plan to include international calling is $9.

The driving in Sri Lanka is not for the faint of heart. In addition to the fact that they drive on the left side of the road (or on the right, or in the middle, or on the sidewalk), there are basically no highways and a large chunk of the driving takes place on super narrow mountainous roads that are hundreds or thousands of feet high, with no guardrails or streetlamps.
Try following the rules? Well, there just aren't any. Coupled with the fact that you need a special license to drive there and traffic laws are mere suggestions, this was not something we were going to attempt.

From doing research we learned that it was a lot cheaper to get a driver for the entire duration of our trip, than to pay for each drive separately. Although we didn't love the idea of being so dependent on one driver, it seemed the smartest route to take.
The company we ended up using was fabulous. Although I went to them with a fully formed itinerary, they would've been a great resource in planning the trip if needed.
They came with an air conditioned van that had excellent wifi, and the driver was professional and great to work with. Our total cost for 8 days was $520, which included tolls, gas, and driver accommodations , so it was a no brainer.

Day One: Flyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyying. And then flying some more.

There are no direct flights to Sri Lanka and the most time efficient and cost effective route is through Dubai.
These flights are PACKED and fill up fast, especially since this is the route a lot of people take when going to India. We booked several months in advance as the tickets were disappearing before our eyes.
Even so, we dawdled for about 3 days too long and lost the flight we wanted. We therefore ended up with 2 stopovers on the way there. We were traveling for so many endless hours anyways, we figured an extra couple of hours won't make much of a difference. (We voted to do our extended stopover on the way home so we don't run into issues with our food, namely it all melting into a giant Pomegranate smelling puddle. We also knew that Dubai is much stricter about allowing food into the country, as well as the hotels giving problems with storing it, as happened to my friend the week before.)

We flew Emirates which allowed us 2 suitcases each. I will admit to feeling like a terrible Jew when I weighed my suitcase. To my dismay, it weighed a mere 38 lbs and I considered packing a library of books just to get it over 50.
Then I remembered about our 4 suitcases of food and immediately felt better.

We departed from New York on Sunday morning for a 13 hour flight to Dubai. Emirates is a great airlines with more legroom, an excellent in-flight entertainment system, and really nice flight attendants, so the flight went by smoothly (Thank you Bose headphones courtesy of Prime day, which were a lifesaver!).

We landed in Dubai a bit late and immediately made our way to the gate for our connecting flight to Male. DXB is a massive airport so we knew if we were in the wrong area, we would definitely miss our flight (as happened to my friend as well) so constant vigilance was in order.
We were fortunate enough to have landed in the correct terminal and did not require a shuttle. If we needed to take a bus, or a train, or a plane, and all the fun stuff DXB Airport has to offer, we would certainly have been cutting it very close.

Thankfully, we made our flight with no problems and 5 hours later we were circling over the beautiful Maldives. We had a 1 hour stopover , though we were not allowed to disembark, we did get to enjoy the view. After sitting on the plane for an hour, we departed for an hour and a half long flight to CMB.

We made our way out of the airport easily, and our driver was waiting to greet us. We then had a 2.5 hour drive to our hotel, which was located in Galle. 
Driving to our hotel was our first introduction into Sri Lankan driving. It is located deep in middle of mountains/rain forest/tea plantation and in the dark it felt like we were driving into impending doom.
We eventually climbed our way up to our hotel. and so we arrived, a mere 26 hours or so after leaving home. 

Niyagama House is a beautiful place nestled in nature, with sparkling clean big rooms. It's owned by a German woman, who moved to Sri Lanka after marrying a local. She used to be an architect and designed the place herself, and now lives in it.
The staff was really hospitable, and we had a wonderful stay.

After dealing with our food (trying to explain Kosher and Shabbos to bewildered Sri Lankans who have never heard of Jews before was quite fun), we settled in and were off to bed.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ludmila on August 20, 2018, 04:43:15 PM
Nice, thank you.
Would you mind sharing the info of the company you hired the car with a driver from? Any pictures?
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 20, 2018, 06:56:07 PM
Nice, thank you.
Would you mind sharing the info of the company you hired the car with a driver from? Any pictures?

The company is Off 2 Sri Lanka (http://www.off2srilankadaytours.com). Menaka is a pleasure to deal with in the office, and our driver was Hemantha.

Many pictures to come.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 21, 2018, 10:43:25 PM
Day Two: Around Galle

Galle is a beautiful coastal town, which is steeped in history.
Once an important trading post between the east and west, Galle was the main port for the country for more than 200 years.
Today it still retains many of its military features, narrow streets and Dutch-colonial buildings, but with a tropical climate that you wouldn’t otherwise encounter in Europe, which makes for a very interesting juxtaposition.
(Some say that Galle is the biblical Tarshish but I couldn't find anything that supported that.)

We started off by driving towards Galle Fort. On the way we passed by a bustling fish market and hopped out for a quick look.




We then continued on to the local town where we exchanged money, got a sim card (the airport Dialog booth had run out) and bought lots of water.
Point to keep in mind - the water is unsafe for drinking and it's suggested to use bottled water for everything, even brushing teeth.
We really enjoyed walking through the town, which gave us a nice feel of the culture.


Galle Fort is a walled city surrounded by thick ramparts. These were built by the Dutch merchants that controlled the city in the 17th century.
We walked on the ramparts which has beautiful views of the ocean and the lighthouse.
Inside the fort there are cute little boutique shops (though a bit overpriced) which we spent some time in.




Towards the end of our rampart walk we got stuck in a torrential downpour, so we didn't bother finishing up. We headed back to our hotel and had lunch.
The hotel is a place we could've spent hours in. We had a balcony on which you can see the tea plantations, hear monkeys chattering, and be mosquito lunch all at the same time.

Lounge area:



Infinity Pool:

We chose to do a bike tour of the surrounding villages that afternoon. We biked through the rice paddy fields, the rural villages, and the beautiful tropical surroundings. This proved to be slightly more difficult than expected being that the 'roads' were quite wet and it was very mountainous terrain. Although more of a workout than we bargained for, it was great fun and we enjoyed immensely!
As we biked we passed the locals, who greeted us enthusiastically, small houses nestled in the rainforest, steep hills that we had to share with tuk tuks, cars, and buses. It's each man for himself out there so we had to be aware of our surroundings at all times lest we get plowed over. 
Throughout our stay in Sri Lanka, whenever we encountered locals, we got beaming smiles and giggles from the kids. They were thrilled to see us, and everyone was genuinely nice and looking to please.
We were literally an attraction. Mothers called to their kids to quickly come to the doors to see the white people on bikes!

Views from the bike ride:




We got back to the hotel, washed up (we were completely covered in mud from our bike ride), and ate dinner by the pool.
The mosquitoes are everywhere and boy do they bite. I think I asphyxiated about half the hotel staff with OFF, but it didn't seem to do anything and we all got very bitten up anyway.

We were wiped out by then and headed to bed early. Thanks to the extreme jet lag, none of us actually slept much (over the entire trip) but enough that we were able to function throughout the day.

Day Three: Balpitiya / Bentota

We spent our second day on the island on the west coast.
We started out going to Balpitiya, which is under an hour from Galle, for the Madu Ganga River Safari.
This was a really nice boat ride which was a great way of seeing some of the hundreds of species of plants and animals; monkeys in trees, water monitor lizards etc. It was a speed boat so it went pretty fast, though it did stall at times. They were chilled and let us sit on the bow and do our thing. 
The area surrounding the river are all swampy marshlands covered in mangrove forests. There are numerous small islands, and the boat makes several stops.





Fishermen in the river:

There's a small island with a temple, which we did not get off at.  We then made our way through the mangroves, and eventually making a stop at 'Cinnamon Island'.
We met a young girl that lives there, and got to see how they get the cinnamon from the bark, along with how they weave the roofs for their huts using coconut fronds. It was really fascinating and at the end we were able to purchase cinnamon oil and some cinnamon sticks to take home.


We continued our beautiful boat ride, stopping at a floating shop to purchase a coconut (word to the wise- it looks better than it tastes).


Next stop was the fish 'spa'.  We got onto the floating stage from the boat and sat down to put our feet in. Hundreds of fish swarmed over and gently nibbled the dead skin off our legs.
I can't say it was pleasant, but definitely an experience!



We had beautiful weather, which definitely contributed, but this was a really enjoyable way to experience some of the nature and animal life in Sri Lanka.

We then made our way to Ahungalla Turtle Hatchery. They look after the turtle eggs to protect them from animals and poachers. Once they hatch, they keep them for a couple of days, at which point they are released to the sea.
The baby turtles are unbearably cute and we had a great time playing with them, and then releasing the 3 day old turtles to the sea (one of us may or may not have yelled out encouraging words to the turtles as they battled the waves).
They also keep maimed or 'handicapped' turtles there for good, which is interesting to see.





We then headed to Bentota Beach where we ate a late lunch.
Bentota has various water sports, like jet skiing, banana boats etc. At that point we were tired and thinking of heading back to the hotel, but we ended up deciding to do a quick spin on the 'Sofa' ride. This was exactly what it sounded like - we sat ourselves down on an inflatable couch and got pulled by a boat, which was awesome.

After that, we went back to Niyagama House where we ate dinner, and enjoyed Ayurvedic therapeutic/methodical massage, which is designed to heal the body and create a balance between mind, body, and spirit. Or something to that effect.

Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 22, 2018, 01:06:38 PM
Day Four: Galle/Polhenna

We started our day in a leisurely fashion, spending some time around the hotel.
We walked a couple of minutes to the tea plantation on premises.




We then packed up, checked out of Niyagama House and were on our way.
We had some time so we chose to go to a local market in Galle,
It was noisy and colorful with the shop owners calling out desperately to passersby. We had some fun bargaining with them and strolled around for a while.



We then started the drive towards Udawalawe, where we'd be spending the night.
On the way, we planned to stop at Polhena Beach to see the iconic stilt fisherman that Sri Lanka is famous for.
Stilt fishing is a bit of a dying tradition in Sri Lanka. It's very difficult to do and they get very meager returns. The 2004 tsunami also didn't help matters, as it altered the shoreline and reduced access to fish.
Nowadays, it ends up being more lucrative for the fisherman to rent their sticks to tourists as photo ops, than to sit out for hours fishing for a small haul.
The only place where they are still genuinely still practicing this method is in Polhena, so that's where we headed.

Picturesque dock we passed on the way:




Stilt fisherman:

 We decided to do some snorkeling while we were there. Although the water was murky, it's very shallow, so we were able to swim quite intimately with interesting creatures like sea turtles and 'sea cucumbers'.
Apparently something there was poisonous or dangerous as well since the guy kept yelling frantically  - NO TOUCH! NO TOUCH!
This is one of the only spots in the country where the water is so shallow in the Indian Ocean so there were scores of kids that had come on a school trip.

Apparently some monks took a swim...

After we enjoyed our time snorkeling, we changed and continued on our way to Udawalawe.
If you want to spend the night near the park, options are limited. We chose Centuria Wild which worked out great.
It's part of a chain, so it had a bit more of a modern feel than desired. The staff were really nice, like the rest of the country, and it's right near the Udawalawe National Park, so it was perfect for one night.

We had a late dinner and called it a night, as we had a 5 AM wakeup call for safari the next morning.

Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 23, 2018, 01:05:44 PM
Day Five: Udawalawe

We woke up bright and early Friday morning for a safari game drive in Udawalawe National Park.
We arranged it through the hotel and they had an open safari jeep waiting for us.
We drove for about 10 minutes until we reached the park entrance, at which point we waited a couple of minutes for the park to open.
We purchased our tickets, picked up our tracker, and were on our way!

There were a couple of jeeps at the entrance but we only saw one or two once we were in the park. This is one of the benefits of Udawalawe over Yala, it's much less crowded.

Sri Lanka has amazing wildlife, despite it's size and throughout the country we saw all sorts of animals.
But if you want to see elephants - Udawalawe is the place to be.  We had great luck and spotted multiple peacocks, all sorts of interesting birds, crocodiles, Macaque Monkeys all around, as well as some water buffalo.
We got really really close to some elephants, including a young baby, which was really cool.
The (volunteer) tracker was great in spotting and pointing out animals that we didn't see at first. 

All in all it was a really nice drive and we enjoyed immensely.









We got back to the hotel at about 9 AM for breakfast and then packed up and headed out.
We made a quick stop at a nearby Elephant Transit Home, an 'orphanage' for baby elephants.
We got there in time for feedings which was cute, but we had mixed feelings about the whole thing and didn't stay too long.



We had a rather long drive and Shabbos comes in pretty early, so we then went straight to Belihuloya, our next stop for the rest of our trip.

As we drove, we officially entered 'The Hill Country', which is a beautiful area with stupendous views, cooler weather and countless tea plantations.
Most people stay near Nuwara Eliya or Ella, but there were almost no hotel options in either one of them. We ended up choosing the lesser known Belihuoya and were so glad we did!
The drive up was just that - up. We climbed deeper and deeper into the hill country with some hair-raising turns and moments.
We finally arrived at the hotel 'car park', which meant our van could go no further.
The Glenrock is an eco-friendly hotel literally built into a mountain. Beats me how they actually built the place, but only tuk tuks and sturdy (open) jeeps can access the road that leads to it. The first time we did that drive was terrifying, and of course the locals just laughed at us.

We unpacked, settled in, and got ourselves ready for a relaxing Shabbos in the jungle.

Day Six: Shabbos in Belihuloya

We had an incredibly relaxing Shabbos. The Glenrock is comprised of a bunch of cabins built in a small village that's surrounded by the Belihuloya River.
We had a 2 floor wooden cabin with an outdoor winding staircase to access the 'basement'. The back of the cabin is on stilts so when looking out the window, you see the tops of the trees, which made it feel like were in a tree house. The cabins are built to accommodate the mountains, not the other way around, which mean we had giant boulders sticking out of our floor.
The river was right behind us so we fell asleep each night to the sound of the rushing river and monkeys frolicking.
The hotel provides jobs to almost all the families of the surrounding village and they were all so gracious and accommodating. Their chef had actually spent some time in Toronto, so he was the first person we encountered that knew what a Jew is, and was fully aware of what to do, and not to do, with our food.   
They offer great activities that include 'reading a book' and 'gazing at the stars'.
We had a fantastic stay there overall, but especially on Shabbos when you can't do anything anyways and just relax in this peaceful, secluded area.

The Glenrock:

Front 'lawn' of the hotel:


Our cabin:


Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: mg92 on August 23, 2018, 03:50:22 PM
Absolutely fascinating trip report!! Great writing and amazing pictures, makes me feel like I was actually there :-) Cant wait to read the rest!
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: sam28 on August 23, 2018, 05:26:46 PM
Wow amazing TR and pictures keep it coming . who helped u do u home work for this trip ?
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 23, 2018, 07:40:42 PM
Wow amazing TR and pictures keep it coming . who helped u do u home work for this trip ?

It was a bit more difficult than other countries since there's less out there, but it was the same drill - multiple trips to the library and lots of online research.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ludmila on August 24, 2018, 01:46:09 AM
The pictures are amazing!!
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 24, 2018, 01:56:59 PM
Day Seven: Horton Plains

We woke up early Sunday morning for a long drive to Horton Plains National Park.
One of the most visited areas of the park is World's End, which is a  sheer cliff, with a drop of about 4,000 feet. The goal is to get to World's End before 10 AM when the clouds roll in, hence the early departure.

The drive up to Horton Plains was quite terrifying. There are multiple hairpin turns on really high cliffs, and at one point our van couldn't get up the hill. It took several tries and some shuffling around in the car, combined with some prayers and tears, until we got enough traction in the back wheels.

We arrived at Horton Plains and realized instantly that we were ill prepared. While the rest of the country is hot and humid, here you're at an altitude of over 7,000 feet which makes it quite chilly.
On top of that, it was raining on and off which made the trail quite slippery and hard to navigate.
We took umbrellas, which did us no good in the traditional sense as they turned inside out the minute we opened them due to the winds. We did end up using them as walking sticks which came in handy while on slippery slopes.
The hike took us a lot longer than expected due to the mud so we didn't end up getting to World's End until well after 10. The time combined with the fact that it was a cloudy, rainy day, made for some pretty foggy views. While it wasn’t what we were hoping for, it had a beauty of its own and it's incredibly cool to be that high up, no guardrails of course.

Also on the trail is Baker's Falls, which is beautiful.

Although it was harder and longer than expected, we had a great time and really enjoyed the hike.
Word to the wise - come prepared with jackets and you'll do just fine.






World's End:

As the hike took longer than expected, we didn't get back to The Glenrock until about 4 PM.
We stopped at a random spot for some amazing views:



When we got back we took a tuk tuk around the local village.

Views from the ride:





Day Eight: Haputale -> Nuwara Eliya

Monday was our last day in Sri Lanka. We packed up, checked out of The Glenrock and made our way for one last harrowing drive down the mountain.

We drove to Haputale to catch our train. The train rides in Sri Lanka are epic and were determined to work it into our schedule.
The most scenic route is from Ella to Kandy, but since we weren't planning on visiting Kandy, this didn't make much sense for us.
We chose to take the train from Haputale to Nanuoya (Nuwara Eliya) since this is one of the most scenic portions of the trip and is only an hour and a half.

We arrived at the station only to learn that the train was delayed 2 hours due to some weather problems in another area that caused an avalanche onto the tracks. We considered skipping the train ride but ultimately decided against it (thankfully!) and left to find something to do in Haputale.

We went to the nearby Adisham Bungalow, which is an old governor's mansion from the British rule.
We realized as we got there that it's now used as a monastery, so we didn't enter, but it has beautiful surrounding grounds which we enjoyed walking around.


Monks take selfies too:

We made our way back to the train station to await our train.
We bought observation saloon tickets (must be bought a  few weeks in advance) for they offer open windows and wide views.
The railway system was built by the British in the 1800s and hasn't been updated much since.
It's all very old fashioned and we had a grand time waiting around and watching how they operate. 




The train itself was amazing and I could've stayed on for another hour easily. It's easy to see why people call this 'the world's most beautiful train ride'.
The scenery from the train is breathtaking!  The views from the window had us snapping breathlessly at every turn.
In addition, every carriage has open doors so we were free to hang out the doors and watch the breathtaking scenery, or sit with our feet hanging and enjoy the ride. The weather in The Hill Country is so much cooler so it was incredibly refreshing.






We got to Nanuoya and made our way to nearby Nuwara Eliya to check it out.
People talk about Nuwara Eliya, often referred to Little England, as a 'must-see'but I have to say, I was not impressed.
We drove through the town to see the sights, and then shopped a bit in the local stores.

We then headed out for a long drive to CMB to catch our 3 AM flight to Dubai.

Point to be aware of: CMB has a security line to enter the airport, which takes some time, so be sure to factor that in when arriving for a flight.

Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 27, 2018, 03:20:08 PM
Day Nine: Dubai

We landed in DXB at 6:00 AM after a 4 and a half hour flight from Colombo.
Since our layover was under 24 hours, our luggage went straight from CMB to EWR, which was great.
We changed some money, got out of the airport quickly, and caught a cab to our hotel.
Even though we weren't spending the night, we chose to get a hotel room for the 21 hours we would be there, as a home base.
We chose the Hyatt Regency Dubai Creek Heights due to it's close proximity to the airport and cheap pricing. It was really nice and worked out beautifully.
We got to the hotel, showered, rested a bit, and ate breakfast. We then headed out for our 11:00 Yellow Boat Tour.
The Yellow Boat Tour is a great way to see the main sights of the city in a pleasant and enjoyable manner.
Once we reached open water, the boat went fast which was really refreshing. We saw The Atlantis, Burj al Arab, as well as lots of other sights, for about an hour and a half.

One thing we were not counting on was the intense intense intense (did I mention intense?) heat.
The humidity was suffocating and the sun was beating down ferociously. The day we were there had a real feel of about 140 degrees.
By the time we exited the boat, we were all just about wilted.






Any plans we had for after the boat ride were immediately nixed as we took refuge in the nearest grocery store and bought some cold drinks. We then went back to the hotel, cooled off and had lunch.
After girding ourselves to face the heat again, we took a taxi to the Gold Souk, where we enjoyed walking around and shopping.



After feasting our eyes on all the glittering gold we took a cab to the Dubai Mall, where the entrance to At The Top is located.
At The Top is the observation deck on the 124th and 125th floors of the Burj Khalifa. We chose not to pay extra to go higher as everyone said it's really not worth it.

The line was long to get up and we waited for about half hour. After that we went up an elevator that takes 70 seconds to go up all those floors. It's really cool that you don't even feel yourself moving at that speed and the only indication is that your ears pop.

Once we got up we walked out on the balcony to enjoy the views of Dubai. It was getting dark by the time we got to the top so we got to see partial daylight, as well as the nighttime views which were really nice.




We chose to do the virtual reality which was a fun experience. They have you up climb on top of the Burj, blowing wind in your face which makes it very realistic, and then jump off the building with a parachute.

After spending some time At The Top we went back down to the back of the Dubai Mall. They have a really nice fountain show every half hour at night.
They have options to pay for views from a boat or the platform, but it's completely not necessary as you can see perfectly from the boardwalk.



It was a really incredible show, in fact we enjoyed it so much that we stayed another half hour (almost dying from heat exhaustion in the process) to see another one.

In between shows they had a cool light show with music on the Burj Khalifa.


We went back to the hotel to freshen up and get ready to leave.
We left pretty early to the airport which was a good thing. DXB is like a city unto itself and it can take a really long time to get anywhere.
Once we got to the gate, there were no seats to be had and the place was packed. Our flight was so full that they started boarding over 2 hours before departure!

We got on without incident and had a pleasant flight home. Upon our arrival we breezed right through thanks to Global Entry but then waited about an hour for our baggage.
Since it was such a full flight, they had to open 2 luggage carousels and it took an endless amount of time for everything to come out.
Eventually we made our way out of the airport and headed home. 

Dubai was a great stopover and a great way to break up the trip home. Any more than a day probably would not have been enjoyable due to the heat, but we loved seeing the city for the couple of hours that we did.

If anyone has any questions on Sri Lanka or Dubai, feel free to ask!

Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: BarryLincoln on August 27, 2018, 03:50:09 PM
Great TR... sounds like an incredible trip...
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ludmila on August 27, 2018, 04:10:52 PM
Just beautiful, thanks again. Very helpful info to plan a future trip.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: moisheyb on August 29, 2018, 05:04:35 AM
Wow amazing trip!
Did you reach out to chabad for anything?
Sri Lanka is rapidly climbing to a must.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on August 29, 2018, 09:50:41 AM
Wow amazing trip!
Did you reach out to chabad for anything?
Sri Lanka is rapidly climbing to a must.

Thank you!
There are 2 Chabads and I reached out to both of them initially. One is in Colombo and one moves, they are on the Southwest coast in the winter and the Southeast coast in the summer.
Ultimately we didn't end up going to or using either one as the locations didn't make senses for our itinerary.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: m65 on July 22, 2020, 02:25:53 PM
wow! great TR.
if i have an israeli passport in addition to the usa one, is it an issue going in to sri lanka?
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on July 22, 2020, 03:55:30 PM
wow! great TR.
if i have an israeli passport in addition to the usa one, is it an issue going in to sri lanka?

Shouldn't have any problems
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: EliJelly on July 23, 2020, 12:45:24 AM
Wow amazing TR! Kudos to @Dan for airing it on the main site.
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: Dan on July 23, 2020, 12:46:30 AM
Great TR indeed :)
Title: Re: Ayubowan from Sri Lanka (with a side of Dubai)
Post by: ponash123 on July 23, 2020, 09:58:57 AM
Great TR indeed :)

Thanks for the post!