Asia,  Blog,  Money,  Sri Lanka,  Travel

Rainy Sri Lanka

Our trip to Sri Lanka didn’t start well right from the beginning. First, our flight was 3 hours delayed. Then, when we finally arrived someone asked us if we need a taxi. Nothing unusual at the airport, but he said he’s with Uber and the price he asked for was also close enough to Uber so we agreed to go with him. He went to parking and after a few minutes he was back, but he wasn’t driving, there was someone else on a driver seat. We thought it’s a bit strange, but we didn’t think much about it. When we passed a highway gate he asked us for additional money for the highway, which wouldn’t be a big deal if not for the fact that he claimed that the fee is for each person, not a car, so he needs money for both of us. Obviously, we refused to pay any extra money above the agreed earlier amount. That started a heated conversation.

Taxi scam

What was interesting in all this mess, the driver didn’t say anything all this time. After a few moments of the argument and me opening the door and asking to stop the car right there, the guy finally said we pay what we agreed to on the airport but we need to pay now because he’s leaving the car. It was a messy situation, the guy was strange, to say the least, but I gave him money just to be over with it.

Once he left the driver all the sudden started to talk with much better English than the other one. He said he doesn’t know that guy. That he is Uber driver who dropped someone to the airport and that other guy stopped him and said he has a customer and told him to drive. He wasn’t allowed to say anything, he said that other guy told him to shut up every time he tried to say something. So it looked like we all got scammed, not just us but the driver as well. He asked to not judge Sri Lanka by this first bad impression, that most people there are nice and honest. Then he drove us to our Airbnb, calling our host a few times to find the place. He was a nice person so we paid him extra for all the trouble.

This was the first and the last bad experience in Sri Lanka. There were a few tuk-tuk drivers that tried to charge us more than it was worth it, but that’s normal everywhere so we didn’t pay much attention to it. Anyway, when you roughly know the price you should pay you simply kindly refuse to pay more and people, in the end, give up.

tuk tuk in the shop

Huge house tour

When we arrived at our Airbnb there was a friend of our host to give us a tour of the house and explain everything. It was a big house with 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, fully equipped kitchen and large living room. The most interesting feature of the living room was a small pond with fishes and a tiny waterfall. Around that were bar stools and a table where we obviously created our new office πŸ™‚

There was only one bedroom with AC and that was the bedroom we chose to stay in. All other rooms had only a fan. Those fans worked all day long but it was still too hot for us, but we like to stay in cold places so it wasn’t a surprise.

In the kitchen, we quickly noticed that all pans were badly corroded and we asked the owner to get us some new ones so we can cook our meals. He promptly replied and the very next day someone brought us a brand new set of pans.

AC problems

Overall the house was really nice with a few small flaws that didn’t bother us that much. Our inside pond, for example, had an open roof, so at night we were attacked by insects that had an easy way in. We solved it with an insect repellent incense. Maybe it wasn’t perfect, but still much better than nothing. In our bedroom on the other hand for some reason, water was running down the wall. We thought it’s from the AC, but after a while, we noticed that even with AC turned off all day the wall was still very wet. We mentioned that to the owner and he sent some people to look at it and fix it. I am not sure if whatever they did worked though.

Heavy rain everyday

And this is a point where I need to mention that we suspect the problem was not AC but heavy rains that we experienced every single day. That was also the reason we didn’t travel or visit too much while in Sri Lanka. Once we went out for groceries to a local shop. It was nice and sunny, but when we left the shop it was already raining a bit. But the time we reached the house we were soaking wet and the ground in front of the house changed into a small pool. It rained every single day.

Limited internet

The other problem was limited internet. The host did increase the limit for us, but we still got close to its’ end by the middle of the month. What annoyed us a bit was that the owner to prevent us from going over the limit simply set a daily limit we could use. That was very annoying for someone who works online!

Watching wild life

What we loved about the place was the ability to watch nature from our balcony. We’ve watched monkeys jumping on trees and relaxing on the roof of the house next to ours during the day and huge swarms of fireflies in the garden at night. It was lovely. People living in this area were very nice too. It looks like they don’t see tourists often because everyone stared at us like we were aliens. I also noticed that most local shops didn’t offer any other meat but frozen sausages like hot dogs. In fact, most fridges and freezers were filled up with a different kind of it. There was plenty of dried soya “meat” though. I found that interesting. It’s a shame we didn’t get a chance to see more in Sri Lanka.

We will definitely come back here, just maybe at some other season when it’s not raining that often and maybe to a smaller apartment with less problems πŸ˜‰


Our Expenses in Sri Lanka

CategoryLocal CurrencyUSD
Airfare194.80
Accommodation559.56
Groceries69,832395.40
Restaurant8,539.9945.68
Taxi5,446.8829.13
Sim10
Souvenirs1,0005.35
Other1,3107
Total (31 days)86,129.411247.63
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