Journey to South Eastern Sri Lanka-Part 1-


Welcome to Todd’s Wanderings!

You are probably wondering, who is Todd, how can he travel so much, doesn’t he have a job? Well, the short answer is I

Mt. Ramlaou, Timor Leste

am guy who left home 10 years ago. With the exception of graduate school I have been living abroad ever since.

Not satisfied with that answer? Here’s a slightly longer version.

I am a conflict resolution and human rights expert who has lived in Japan, Thailand, Timor Leste, Sri Lanka, most currently Kosovo, and visited over 30 countries. I began my wanderings 10 years ago as an English teacher in Japan. I fell in love (with the country), stayed for five years and then finally moved on to international development work.

I am also a travel writer, working on my first book, and draw inspiration from the decidedly offbeat areas of the world I find myself in. This website is a way to share my travel experiences, destinations and advice.

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Journey to South Eastern Sri Lanka-Part 1

During Tamil and Sinhala New Year Kay and I took a 5 day road trip down to the southeastern corner of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is so hot this time of year most people head up into the mountains for the cool weather. We had other plans. With the monsoon shifting from the West to the East Coast a dive site called the Great Basses becomes accessible. It is only safe 4 weeks out of the year and is said to be the best diving in Sri Lanka.

We planned out trip so that we spent one night in the hill country in Belihul Oya, then a night in an ecolodge in Galapita, and finally two nights in Tissamaharama where we went on a safari in Yala National Park and then finally a day of diving at the Great Basses.

We hopped in the car and hit the “main” roads. Luckily the traffic was light and it only took us 4 1/2 hours to reach our first hotel in the hill country.
Beautiful views the whole way up.
We stayed at the River Garden Resort. There was definitely a river and garden, but we never found the “resort.” The staff where friendly enough but rooms we expensive for what they were, and the area so damp that the sheets were always wet. By morning my hat was soaked through!
After a tropical downpour we decided to go for a hike. Armed with a hand written map we set off to find a nearby waterfall.

On the trail

Consulting the “map”
The waterfall in the distance
We bouldered our way up the river.
The ninja lessons are finally paying off.
Trying to find the path.
It is as slippery as it looks.
The waterfall. After all that effort we thought it would be bigger.
Nothing better than a cool mountain river.
The next day we hit the road again and headed out of the mountains.
The roads were great until we hit a split in the road when things got a bit bumpy and the road lost all but one lane.
Taking a break
On the A-4 we came across the Diyaluma Falls.
We arrived for a night at the Galapita ecolodge. There is no electricity and they serve only vegetarian food. Other then them not being ready for us we had a great and relaxing stay.
Around the lodge
A view of Galapita Gala in the distance
A river cuts through the property

You have to cross a suspension bridge to reach the other rooms

Open air hut

Tree house overlooking the paddy fields and mountains

From the tree house we spied two peacocks in a nearby tree
Waking up in the morning

To be continued with Yala National Park and the Great Basses…