Wasgamuwa – A Tour Worth Inspecting Nature and Wildlife

As a part of the inspection tours team Tripavi is doing around the country in assuring the best services for you, in the first week of October we took a road trip to visit Wasgamuwa. Wasgamuwa is a quaint little town tucked in the foot hills of Knuckles range and greenery all year round. This little piece of paradise is rich in its take of trees and greens and not to mention the abundance of waterways paving way to its specialty, riverine forests.

With a pretty early start around 4 in the morning we hit the road to reach Wasgamuwa in time. Driving across Dambulla we decided to take a small stop for breakfast at one of the popular traveller hangout and after a hearty breakfast we started on the trip again. Driving towards Wasgamuwa will put you in one of the most picturesque roads to have a drive in Sri Lanka. Your way forward is laid through mountains, plains and valleys. The long drive will border rivers and sometimes forest reserves.

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Tripavi Launches the Brand New Website

Tripavi Sri Lanka shows up a vivid way to attract the clientele through redesigning the website www.tripavi.com . Changing from the existing website which had a fair bit of content to the new website, which equals to a full trip around the country, the new and updated version caters to all markets and all information needs.

Newly set up website makes it easier for a traveller to understand Sri Lanka in destinations, what Sri Lanka as a whole is reading out about the climates, popular attractions, hotel profiles, committing to responsible tourism, and highlighting how to travel safe under the new normal.

Tripavi.com brings along interesting new aspects to the holiday makers of Sri Lanka adding some new and updated features like medical holidays, sports abroad tours, coach tours if you are vacationing on a budget and package tours where Sri Lanka’s highlights are showcased at the prime. As per the specialization of Tripavi, whichever the tour you select to traverse in the country you are assured the best attention by our team of consultants, get to know them by visiting ‘meet our team’ sections.

Events by Tripavi is another new entrant to the market with the launch of the website where periodical newsletter and promptly updated blog posts gives you the travel stories from around the island. If you are travel agent, coming on board with us is made easier with the new sign up for partnerships button and there is an interesting bit of information going along at the new website in all aspects. Why not type www.tripavi.com and find out what more is eye catching.

Whale Watching in Mirissa

Sri Lankan seas are known for the strange sea mammal the astounding whale. November to April each year is the whale watching season each year. Over the years Sri Lanka had turned to a whale watching hotspot and an international whaling community protected zone. Whales are warm blooded, marine mammals which are of the order Cetacea. They breathe air, give birth to live young and are found in all the oceans of the world. Whales are divided into two suborders, the Odontoceti (toothed whales) and Mysticeti (baleen whales). Mysticeti are toothless mammals while instead of teeth, they have a rigid brush like whalebone plate material which is called ‘baleen’ which hangs from their upper jaw area.

The island seas are known for the sightings of, Blue Whale, Humpback Whale, Fin Whale, Mink Whale, Sperm Whale, Pigmy Sperm Whale & Dwarf Sperm Whale

And the list goes on also with happy dolphins popping from here and there swimming in teams to give you a pleasant time. Some of these species are occasional visitors while some are permanent residents around Sri Lankan waters. Most of these whales are seen while migrating from the Arabian seas to the Bay of Bengal. A high concentration of sperm whales and blue whales can be spotted off the coast of Dondra during the months of December to April. According to marine biologists, these whales can be residents or visitors since the continental shelf off Dondra and Mirissa is quite narrow.

What you need to know

Whale watching with Tripavi assures you a comfortable ride in a yacht ship with an amazing service oriented team, you will leave the shore by 5.30 in the morning and will approximately take you 5 hours depending on sea and wind situation. By the sun dawn you might have drawn further in the Indian Ocean and the breakfast plus snacks from time to time will be served.

Team Tripavi recently accommodated a special Danish group on a whale watching tour and the senior management team was present to ensure a smooth sailing experience to all our special guests.

Whale sightings are decided on the sea and water conditions and mostly can expect at least one sighting given the sea condition.   

#stayhome #staysafe – Message from Tripavi

With this COVID-19 pandemic the silent distractor reaching impacts on everyone around the globe, our passion and business of creating memorable vacations have changed as we stand in uncharted time zone in our history.

We take a moment out of our time to appreciate and thank everyone in our circle, our colleagues, hoteliers, ground handlers, partners, authorities and travelers included

At the times of this great uncertainty, let’s all take a moment to appreciate that we are getting the much-needed time with our loved ones, and the distancing had actually made us closer. We stand in the side of every frontier fighter in health sector, and security forces who are fighting this for us.

When we are apart at this time, let’s also take to mind that we are doing this for a time of being together again. At then we can make more memories vibrant than ever before. Only this time let’s all remember before we act upon to take care of nature and pledge upon being responsible to mother earth for a time like this will again found only in history.

The Gem of Northern Peninsula – Jaffna

Jaffna, the northern most peninsula of Sri Lanka is a pop of culture, color and ethnicity. With a foremost Hindu based culture, the majority of the residents are Tamils. From the food to the attire, everything takes a tumbling turn in Jaffna. Flying is the easiest method of transport to Jaffna and with scheduled flights operating from Ratmalana to Jaffna you can reach Jaffna in a mere 1 hour. The second best method of transport is the goo old locomotive, with much comfortable trains and a few trips available from Colombo to Jaffna on a daily basis.

Jaffna has a list of attractions, varying from religious pit stops to natural bindings. The list of attractions worth covering properly takes you three days. A quick cut can take you through the places of utmost importance. In a day’s trip Nallur Kovil, Jaffna Fort, Jaffna Library, Minister’s house, is worth covering.

Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil – Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil is a temple to the deity of Lord Murugan. The vast temple is mostly embodied in gold with miniature statues from top to bottom. As for all Hindu temples, Nallur temple also has a pond in center. The main shrine is far inside the temple and a pilgrim can walk around the temple reading the wall paintings that say a cultural story. Dress code to enter the temple, women should cover the knees and shoulders, men are expected to enter shirtless. Photography inside the temple is prohibited.

Library of Jaffna – Jaffna library at one time used to be the best library with the most number of first copies in the south Asia. As a result of the civil conflict the whole library was burnt down in the year 1983 losing all valuable books. It’s been rebuilt now with most books restored. You can walk around the library to get a good idea of the collection but visitors are not permitted to enter the library sections.

The Jaffna Fort – the second biggest Dutch fort built in Sri Lanka is an archaeological monument that has had a direct onslaught as a result of the recent 30 year of armed conflict. An outer moat exists outside the ramparts. Outside the moat is the outer rampart which has built in to it five tunnels each in a twin formation. The monuments within the fort had been destroyed during the conflict that raged in the area. Of these the monument named the Queen’s Palace is in sufficient level of preservation than the rest as it could be identified. Its superstructure is completely destroyed and the remaining walls are in the process of being destroyed due to the presence of invasive plants having taken roots in them. The fort is a free visiting area to the tourists during the day. Carry a hat to protect from direct rays of sun.

Minister’s House – Jaffna being a sub kingdom as in relation to the main ruler of the country. The independent remnants of it lie around the city. Of it is the minister’s house, a fully formed building which clearly looks being belonged to elite. The house is in full structure and is made of wood and clay and is full with intricate wood carvings. The site is without any much information and in Tamil it is known as manthri manai.

Stop for an ice cream at Rio – from the days of history, Jaffna inhibitors preferred their ice cream sweeter. Thus, Jaffna’s Rio ice cream became a stop to any tourist entering Jaffna. The wooden stool laid ice cream shop doesn’t really let you pick ice cream looking at it directly; instead you have to look at a menu with pictures and order. As almost, the ice cream comes out similar to what the picture shows. Rio is known mostly for sundae style ice cream and this is a sweeter a little less creamier version to the Italian gelato.

On a day’s trip to Jaffna the important island tours such as the Nainathiu island which houses Nagadeepa Buddhist temple, a Hindu Kovil, the island of delft with the remnants from the Dutch period and wild horses, the point pedro cannot be covered but a proper trip to Jaffna should cover all these attractions.

The food in Jaffna – Jaffna takes shape of food similar to southern Indian cuisine. Once in Jaffna the Jaffna Crab curry with white rice (Jetwing Jaffna serves a tasty portion of Crab), which cooks the whole sea crab in a chili infused curry served with plain white rice is a must try. Also, try the oodial kool, a seafood broth also served with white rice. In other dishes, idiappam, idli and chapahi with local curries are fusion favorites too.

What to take with you – although most Jaffna towners speak very good English, a guide to take you around who speaks Tamil will come in as an advantage. Do remember to carry a hat, sunglasses and lotion to cover from extreme sun. It is advisable to carry bottled mineral water or buy high quality bottled water than drinking water direct from the tap.

Inspection Tour to Down South

In constant updating of the information we have of the hotels and its facilities to give a better service to the clients of ours, team makes sure that we have a warm and an updated on track with our service providers mainstreaming hotels. As another chapter in assuring that, the team went on an inspection tour to the south to personally see the facilities of the properties being used for our upcoming tours and to inspect the possible usable properties which are new market entrants.

Starting off our journey in the morning and taking the southern expressway we reached Galle and drove a bit afar to reach Kabalana in Ahangama. A popular surfing beach stretch with some new and excelling hotels of kind.

Our first stop was Hotel Kabalana , built in the feel of Egyptian culture made alive here in the southern coastal town, Hotel Kabalana carries forward itself as an icon to the hotel stretch. The entrance itself is made as a replica of the famous Abu Simble temple in Egypt symmetrical to the four king statues being seated outside. The hotel boasts a stunning surfer beach right from the lobby and the rooms and hallways compliment the architectural choice with a standing row of god Anubis statues in each hallway. The rooms are comfortable and equipped with high tech amenities.

As our next stop we visited Apa Villa in Thalpe, a straight beach front quaint little villa, Apa villa is complete with a lap pool, looking at the ocean. Being a small boutique property, Apa villa is complete with butler service and privacy in dining and relaxing options. Although the living spaces can add a bit more touch of art to the property, Apa Villa does in its take a good call in standing out as a boutique property. The Apa villa library is filled with Hans Hofer’s famous travel guides covering intriguing destinations far and wide. The suites are housed in three separate villas that incorporate typical southern architectural features of columns and verandahs, courtyards and open spaces that let the ocean breeze and fresh air in.

Era Beach standing a few blacks away from Apa villa is our next stop, still being a small boutique property Era Beach has a little bit more of a back garden than Apa, the rooms are much spacious and comfortable and some rooms also come with plunge pools. The pool of the villa is tucked in the middle of the extended hotel wing of the common dining space and the living lobby. As in Era Beach is also complete with sunbeds and private lounging helping the guests relax during their holiday. There are eight luxurious bedrooms with four on the ground floor opening out to the gardens and the swimming pool and four on the upper floor with spectacular sea views.

Angel Beach Club stands out from the rest of the properties being a beach club and a remodel of the popular Niki Beach clubs. The diverse and popping beach club is filled with travellers who are in seek of a holiday adventure and experience. Being a popular instagram location, Angel Beach Club is filled with spaces that lets you take instagram worthy shots. The food and the drinks are freshly made then and there depending on the client requirement and other than being a full time functional hotel, the beach club runs as a day lounge to the youth travellers who is looking for something of thrill and music

Galle Fort is location with centuries of history carved to it. Where Yara Galle Fort is located inside the fort itself. Being a small luxury hotel, Yara Galle fort is nicely tucked into the old style buildings of the Galle fort. Yara has an inside garden and rooms are speciously located around it to give a glimpse of the garden except for a few rooms. Though smaller in size in comparison Yara’s location gives it a prime advantage being at a spot of traveller preference and of easy reach to most Galle Fort attractions.

As the next step we went along to Haritha Villa and spa in Hikkaduwa, perched atop a hill and cascading in different levels, Haritha is a new purpose built resort with the perfect mix of country and the views balanced together. Haritha consists of individual villa concept and each villa has a specialized butler service. Haritha’s perfectly fringed gardens and a dozen of pools with plenty of sitting and relaxing places available along the property makes it an ideal stop along resort. They are also known for their spa services and immaculate detail into creating guest needs met.

Next we made a stop at the breezy hikkaduwa lake, to hop onto Kalla Bongo Lake resort a well preferred  and popular retreats among our European clients, a peaceful little gem tucked to the shores of Hikkaduwa Lake, the resort has gone through a facelift recently complete with television (even though the peace & tranquility doesn’t really require you to watch it), wifi and upgraded bathrooms. Consisting of 15 rooms in total, the resort is complete with a pool and lake views are the best about the resort. Kalla Bongo cooks up some delicious food, their club sandwich with a side of French fries and coleslaw is best around Hikkaduwa.

At the end of a busy day, after a successful hotel inspection and assuring what goes into your holiday is looked to, the team took the southern expressway to head back to Colombo at sunset.

Say “NO” for Plastics

As a responsible travel policy, we at Tripavi are taking initiatives to reduce the intake of plastics. When you come visit our beautiful island with Tripavi, you get a free re-usable water bottle to carry around with you, instead of the plastic alternatives which takes 450 years to even start decomposing.

Every year 8 million metric tons of single use plastics are dumped to the oceans around the world, and an uncounted about 500,000 plastic bottles end up in the oceans. This debris is causing a countable damage to the coastal belt of world oceans, and the trapped plastic damages the eco systems and wildlife at large.

This single use plastic takes about a million year to completely recycle and thus far of the single use plastic made, only 6% of them have been recycled. It’s high in red alert for us to do something about the damage we have caused to the planet we live in.

As a measure and a small part of contribution from our part to reduce usage of single use plastics, we give a re-usable metal bottle to our clients, touring our beautiful country. That way, you contribute to our small effort in keeping Sri Lanka clean which takes a notch back in your carbon footprint contributing to world pollution. This re-usable bottle can be refilled as and when you prefer as to your need of water while travelling assisted by your private chauffeur.

Tree Planting

Around the world the prick massive deforestation had made a massive drop in the forest covers.

Around the world the prick massive deforestation had made a massive drop in the forest covers. The effects of this forest losses are affecting the earth in a fundamental way to all living beings. Global warming, emission of greenhouse gasses, changes in usual weather patterns and various kinds of pollution opting to various effects just starts off the list.

In Sri Lanka alone the deforestation is of a countable scale. The island had a 49 percent forest cover but by 2005 this had fallen by approximately 26 percent. Between 1990 and 2000, Sri Lanka lost an average of 26,800 ha of forests per year. This amounts to an average annual deforestation rate of 1.14%. Between 2000 and 2005 the rate accelerated to 1.43% per annum. However, with a long history of policy and laws towards environmental protection, deforestation rates of primary cover have actually decreased 35% since the end of the 1990s thanks to a strong history of conservation measures. The problem of deforestation in Sri Lanka is not as significant in the southern mountainous regions as it is in northern and lowland southern Sri Lanka, largely due to the nature of environmental protection.

As the statistics may suggest the loss of forest cover is an illuminating issue in the country as well as around the world. This should be taken measures at step by step stage little by little. Tripavi has identified this growing necessity to act out. As a measure we are setting ourselves out in to planting forest growth trees wherever possible as the chances we get. A step of this was done at our inspection tour to Yala last month.

All Tripavi staff members planted a tree that will account to the regrowth of forest replanting once they are peeking good to touch the skies. As it comes to the future these growing investments will give never ending rewards to all living beings dwelling earth. With a proud heart of doing our part for conservation we take a pledge in continuing to do so until it is being made a trend around Sri Lanka.