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Sri Lanka: 'Leave me here!'

Jon Barber, our Families Worldwide manager, has recently returned from Sri Lanka, where he found the hardest thing he had to do was come home!

"Arriving in Sri Lanka, you are struck by how friendly and welcoming everybody is. Perhaps at home we have become wary of smiling at each other or chatting freely with a stranger, but for Sri Lankans being friendly is part of the norm. How life assuring it is to cheerily say "good morning" to some new and receive in return a radiant smile.

To find a place where everybody warmly greets visitors with open arms is becoming rare in our world, but the custom of Sri Lanka is to welcome everybody. When you hear "Ayubowan" for the first time accompanied with a glowing smile you know you're welcome on this peaceful island. Perhaps it is the Buddhist culture, the jaw dropping scenery, the amazing wildlife or simply the wonderful food...being welcoming is the way of life for the people of Sri Lanka.

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For a small(ish) island, Sri Lanka is very special and has so much to offer adventure seeking families. Be it white sandy beaches, lapped by the warm Indian Ocean, the fascinating mix of culture and traditions, the unique wildlife or the always stunning scenery - you may well be in 'God's Own Country' or perhaps more fittingly 'Buddha's Own Country'. Add to this the fact Sri Lankans love to eat - spicy curries, exotic fruits and plenty of fresh coconut, means you are in for a full-on happy and healthy holiday.

And for children, Sri Lanka is prime for introducing new culture and activities, which you can enjoy safely with friendly and knowledgeable guides on hand. Everyone will be happy, be it climbing to the top of sacred cave temples, picking tea leaves with locals, taking a safari to spot elephants and leopards, glimpsing whales off the southern coast, learning the secrets of cooking a healthy curry, taking on the locals in a friendly cricket match or simply sitting back on the beach and enjoying a colourful sunset.

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What are my lasting memories? Smiling faces? Tropical beaches? Tea plantations...? For me it was the humble privilege of seeing young and old elephants roaming freely and safely in the wild. When you consider the worrying demise of African Elephants, it's a privilege to witness large numbers of healthy Asian Elephants, protected by well managed conservation. You leave knowing the future for these gentle giants is healthy.

You can see for yourself why Sri Lanka is so hard to leave by visiting this year... For families with younger children we recommend the slower paced, cultural insight found on our 'Ceylon Discovery' trip or for families with active teenagers we recommend the thrills and discovery found on our 'Active Sri Lanka' trip.

Please phone us on 01962 737 560 for more information.