The Strongest Pearl of The Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is shaped like a reverse teardrop. “Sri” means the strongest of the forest, “Lanka” means the pearl of the Indian Ocean. Sri Lanka means the strongest pearl of the Indian Ocean.

At first we went to the Dubai with a 4 hour flight with Emirates, and after a short while of transfer, and again a 4 hour flight with Emirates, we arrived at Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, at 8.00 am.

A local tour agency welcomed us with a Toyota jeep. Our guide’s name was Lasanti. He is both the guide, the driver and a shareholder of the agency. The other partner is Dutch.

Because we were going to see Colombo at the end of our Sri Lanka trip, we did not get inside and drove straight to Pinnawala.

Pinnawala is an elephant farm with orphan elephants inside… But in time, the elephants here made families by breeding, even if it is known as  an elephant orphanage.  We saw the oldest elephant in Sri Lanka, which was  told to be 67 and blind, in this farm.

Then, we made the elephants drink milk with bottles and cone by paying ,5 or 250 rupis.

An elephant ate 250 kgs food and drank 150 litres water  everyday. A newborn elephant was about 350 kg while a 20-25-year-old one was about 3,5 ton.

Then we sat at a restaurant by the river and waited for the elephants come to bath while we were eating our seafood salad and drinking our mixed fresh tropical fruit(pineapple, papaya, mango) cocktail.

About half an hour later, an elephant herd comprised of 50-60 elephants were approaching to the river  from the street  accompanied with their caretakers. Even though the baby elephants wanted to turn different ways, they then walked to the river with the direction of the caretaker. It was a lovely scene. I thougt that it was the region where elephant population was its top.

By the way, a baby elephant, in front of the restaurant that we were sitting, caught the door mat with its trunk and then left it after a couple of shaking off.

The elephants were going into the river in line. They were squirting water each other and playing games. About an hour later, they went back through the same street. The elephants in this farm were only used for touristic purpose. They were never used for transportation or anything.

People of the under-developed, poor countries resemble to each other in everywhere. While we were taking pictures next to an elephant,  a caretaker showed up suddenly and wanted money.

The excrement of the elephants was being made paper. The middle sized notebook made of the excrement was not cheap at all. The covers for the notebooks were made of leaves and branches of odorous trees such as sandalwood and cinnamon. About a 50-page notebook was almost $40. Tourism has just started to emerge here. So, they thought the tourist as easy pickings. But it was obvious that the conditions were made them be like that, because Sri Lankan people were quite smiling and warm.

After half an our trip, we arrived to the New All Spice Garden in Kegalle. It was quite a small garden. After they slightingly gave us the information about cinnamon, vanilla, black pepper and aloe vera, they brought us to the sales point. We didn’t buy anything from here, because we were going to visit a bigger spice garden in Matale. And we set off the road to our new stop, Kandy.

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NURHAN YILMAZ

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NURHAN YILMAZ

1951 İstanbul doğumluyum. Yıl içinde dönüşümlü olarak Sinop, Bodrum ve İstanbul’da yaşamaktayım.Küçük yaşlarda babamın mesleği gereği, Türkiye’nin pek çok farklı şehirlerinde yaşadım.