THE 13th CENTURY VENETIAN TRAVELER MARCO POLO DESCRIBED THE ISLAND AS 'THE JADE PENDANT IN THE INDIAN OCEAN'. THE ABUNDANCE OF GEMSTONES, SPICES, RAIN FORESTS AND WILDLIFE; THE MAGNIFICENT BEACHES, ANCIENT RUINS AND A WRITTEN HISTORY OF OVER 2500 YEARS MAKE THIS ISLAND A TOURISTS' PARADISE.
THE RUINED CITIES OF ANURADHAPURA AND POLONNARUWA ILLUSTRATE THE GLORY OF THE ANCIENT KINGDOMS. THE GIGANTIC STUPAS AND BUDDHA STATUES ARE AMONG THE BIGGEST MAN MADE STRUCTURES OF THE WORLD. THE MASSIVE RESERVOIRS, BUILT BY ANCIENT KINGS TO IRRIGATE THOUSANDS OF ACRES OF LAND, ARE MARVELS OF HYDRO ENGINEERING. THERE ARE EIGHT UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITES IN SRI LANKA
THE ISLAND WAS KNOWN TO THE GREEKS AS 'TAPROBANE' AND TO THE ARABS AS 'SERENDIB'. EARLY MERCHANTS VISITED THE ISLAND IN SEARCH OF GEMSTONES AND SPICES, MAINLY CINNAMON AND PEPPER. COFFEE AND TEA PLANTATIONS WERE STARTED BY THE BRITISH COLONIAL RULERS. CEYLON TEA IS FAMOUS THE WORLD OVER.
TOURISM INDUSTRY IS A MAJOR MONEY SPINNER FOR THIS BEAUTIFUL ISLAND. THE VAST EXPANSE OF BEACHES, RAIN FORESTS AND NATIONAL PARKS WITH HERDS OF WILD ELEPHANTS, THE CENTRAL HIGHLANDS WITH LITHE WATER FALLS, BRING IN THE TOURISTS. THE ISLAND IS DOTTED WITH HUNDREDS OF HOTELS TO ACCOMMODATE THE TRAVELER. AN ISLAND OF 25,000 SQ; MILES HAS 103 RIVERS AND 25000 RESERVOIRS, MOSTLY MAN MADE. WITH VARYING CLIMATIC CONDITIONS THIS IS TRULY A 'SMALL MIRACLE'.
" THE ISLAND OF SRI LANKA IS A SMALL UNIVERSE, IT CONTAINS AS MANY VARIATIONS OF CULTURE, SCENERY AND CLIMATE AS SOME COUNTRIES A DOZEN TIMES ITS SIZE........I FIND IT HARD TO BELiEVE THAT THERE IS ANY COUNTRY WHICH SCORES SO HIGHLY IN ALL DEPARTMENTS - WHICH HAVE SO MANY ADVANTAGES AND SO FEW DISADVANTAGES. LOVELY BEACHES, BEAUTIFUL LANDSCAPES, IMPRESSIVE RUINS, A VIBRANT CULTURE AND CHARMING PEOPLE- NO WONDER SRI LANKA IS A SMALL MIRACLE ".
Quote - Joseph Pulitzer
"PUT IT BEFORE THEM BRIEFLY SO
THEY WILL READ IT, CLEARLY SO
THEY WILL APPRECIATE IT,
PICTURESQUELY SO THEY WILL
REMEMBER IT AND,
ABOVE ALL, ACCURATELY SO THEY
WILL BE GUIDED
BY ITS LIGHT" *****
JOSEPH PULITZER *****
MY SHOTS SRI LANKA
MY SHOTS SRI LANKA >
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Wild mushrooms, a delicacy and a rare food source, taste better than the commercially grown variety. In Sri Lanka, edible mushrooms grow in abundance, in straw left as waste after threshing harvested rice plants. A number of species of mushrooms, growing in the wild, are toxic and poisonous.
Pirith[ paritta in Pali ]is the recitation or chanting of the word of The Buddha. Paritta in the Pali language means protection, listening to the chanting of Pirith protects one from all directions. Listen to the mellow, soothing tones of Pirith.
Centella asiatica is native to the wetlands of Asia and is found in abundance throughout the Island. This herb, also known as Gotukola, is widely used in the preparation of Aurvedic and Chinese medicine.
Rat snakes were thought to be nonvenomous but recent studies have shown that they possess small amounts of venom, harmless to humans. This four and a half footer was photographed, basking in the sun, in my garden.