The downsides to travelling in Sri Lanka

Our posts to date have all been generally very positive about our time in Sri Lanka, and rightfully so, it was amazing. However, we thought that we should also cover the negatives we have experienced so that you are prepared when you arrive.

  • Stray/Street Dogs – There are stray/street dogs everywhere in varying degrees of health, but generally they are having a tough time of it and are in a very poor state. Some will be old with missing limbs and others will be of the tiny and cute variety, all are upsetting. Even with the dislike they took to James, we could not help but be distressed by the situation.IMG_5948
  • Trained Elephants – we saw elephants chained up in temples and being used to give tourists rides. Both of these upset us, particularly the elephants which were in temples as they were clearly distressed, swaying back and forth. Please do not support either of these practices. 09
  • Burning rubbish – everyone burns their rubbish, and this gives rise to lots of smoke and fumes which can be overwhelming at times. The emissions must be pretty epic, and the smoke hangs in the valleys at time. IMG_6207
  • Dust, Dirt and Fumes – the traffic, dirt and dust mean that the air is really hard work at times. James went on a few runs while we were here and it was really hard work on the lungs.
  • There is litter everywhere – It is a serious problem, it is everywhere. The locals appear to have to no respect for the environment, they throw rubbish out of trains and buses, and discard stuff with no thoughts of using a bin. You often find that an area round a particular resort or beach restaurant is clean, but step a few metres away and it is filthy again. This can put a bit of a downer on what otherwise are beautiful beaches or views.19
  • A handful of safari drivers – we did a couple of safari trips and generally the drivers behaved appropriately, but a few had no respect for the animals. Please do some research on who you go with, and tell drivers if they are doing something you disagree with.
  • Sun cream – Local brands have a whitening agent in them which we have no doubt is made from something foul, avoid at all costs.

Despite the few negatives we would definitely recommend you have Sri Lanka high up your list of places to visit. If you need more inspiration please check out what we got up to in our other blog posts.


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