Sri Lanka Tourism

The Natural Spring Fed Infinity Swimming Pool at GlenMyu Estate

The Best Time to Visit Sri Lanka

When is the Best Time to Visit Sri Lanka?

Avoiding the Humidity and Mossies

I was reading an article on TripAdvisor about the Humidity & Mosquitos and the best time to visit Sri Lanka.

Clearly these are 2 things that visitors to this Paradise Island would like to avoid.

The Humidity does take some time to get adjusted to however, I have never got used to Mossies biting me!

Mosquito bites are quite annoying however fortunate Malaria from Mosquitos has mainly been eradicated from Sri Lanka.

The most concerning matter regarding Mosquitos is the risk of contracting Dengue.

I have been living in Sri Lanka for 6 years and feel quite lucky that I have not contracted Dengue.

The number of Dengue cases have been rising in Sri Lanka and there are efforts to reduce the breeding grounds by ensuring that places where there is standing water are removed. There are regular checks in urban areas by the health department to try to educate the population and reduce the breeding grounds.

The Sri Lankan Hill Country

We live at GlenMyu Estate Hotel, Beragala, Haputale which is located in the Sri Lankan Hill Country. The estate is at an elevation of around 900-1000 metres and is a little cooler than other parts of the country. Average temperatures during the day are between 23 and 26 degrees Celsius.

We have found that, although there are some Mosquitos, they are manageable compared to when we lived in Colombo. We also understand that there is no Dengue in the area.

The Humidity is also substantially lower than other parts of Sri Lanka. We have had plenty of guests from countries such as Denmark, Germany, France, UK, Netherlands and also Sri Lanka who arrive and you can see that there is a visible sense of relief to get back to a more comfortable climate.

It’s one of the reasons why we decided that we would be located permanently in the Hill Country. We just love it here!

So, when is the best time to visit the Sri Lankan Hill Country?

Well, it appears that climate change has reached here as well so it is a little more difficult to advise when the rains will come. We have inter monsoon rains so, in the main, it is not as severe as when the main monsoons hit the other parts of the island.

We originally canvassed our neighbours who had resided in the Hill Country for many more years than us to get an insight into when the rains come. In part it is important for us as it determines when we should be planting crops and trees on the estate.

From our conversations historically rains are normally expected from the 15th September to the 15th December and also 15th March to the 15th June. Our experience has not been so and we have prepared lands for planting and the rains have not come. We then take the hoses out and prepare the sprinklers in readiness for a dry spell and we have showers!

Our guests have arrived in heavy rain in mid November and it is sunny the next days enabling them to do their hike around Horton Plains National Park, visit Ella or spend time at Upper Diyaluma Pools and Waterfall.

It’s not as much help as I would like to give but nature doesn’t appear to give any guarantees in the Hill Country!

Why is Sri Lanka so Humid?

The climate in Sri Lanka is tropical (and relatively wet) due to its location slightly North (6-10o) of the Equator in the Indian Ocean.

There are 2 wet (monsoon) seasons. 

During May – October, the winds over Sri-Lanka are Westerly to North-Westerly 

From December – March, the winds over Sri-Lanka are North-Easterly. 

Wind speeds rise in the land surfaces during the months of June – September and also from December – February. 

Regionally the average wind speeds are high in the South-Eastern and North-Western extremes of the island and also in the mountain passes

The island is humid all over Sri-Lanka with the relative humidity normally being around and over 65%. 

On the coast the humidity can rise to 90% in the wetter seasons. 

There are dry dehydrating effects on the levels of humidity due to mountain effects in the windier months. The humidity drops in the eastern region from June to September.

There is a weaker dehydrating effect on the western mountain slopes of the Sri Lanka.

Rainfall

Sri Lanka receives around 1,800 mm of rainfall on average annually distributed unevenly ranging from 500 to 5000 mm/year. 

Rainfall follows a bimodal climatology. 

Main rains are from September – December.

Subsidiary rains are from April – June.

The Eastern and Western Hill Slopes garner orographic (mountain induced) rainfall from December – March (North-Easterly winds) and May to October (Westerly wind) respectively.

The North-East receives cyclonic rainfall from November to December from the storms and cyclonic systems that are steered from the Bay of Bengal by the North-Easterly winds towards Sri-Lanka. Once they make landfall, these systems can dissipate quickly unless they are particularly strong.

Temperature

The mean annual temperature of the country is 27 oC with lower temperatures in the mountains that rise to 2500M. 

The temperature drops during December and January and increases from April to September. 

The mean daily range is approximately 6 oC. 

These temperatures are more moderate than what is typical for such latitudes during the Northern Hemisphere summer from June – August. This can be attributed to the cooling effect of the oceans during the warmest months.

You can find more detailed information about weather patterns and the climate in Sri Lanka at the Climate Change Knowledge Portal.

Climate for Travel is another good website providing more detailed information.

The Sri Lankan Department of Meteorology also provides moree details for those who want to delve deeper.

So, when its the Best Time to visit Sri Lanka?

Well, it depends on where you want to go and what time of the year you want to come.

The weather and best time will be major fact to consider before planning your Sri Lanka travel.

Sri Lanka’s position between 5 and 10 north latitudes results in an Island with a year-round warm tropical climate.

Seasons

There aren’t any prominent seasons like winter, spring, summer, or autumn that many countries experience around the globe.

But there are monsoons!

2 monsoons, 2 parts of the Island

There are 2 separate monsoons in different regions at different timing in Sri Lanka.

Therefore, you need to avoid the monsoon and select the best time to visit Sri Lanka. The good news is that there is usually good weather somewhere on the island most of the time of year. 

When are the Monsoons?

The South Western Monsoon

May – September

Intermittent rains in the wet zone

Frequent showers in Colombo, Kandy, Galle, or Nuwara Eliya

Best time to visit Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya or Dambulla

An ideal to visit north and eastern beaches

Best time to visit Trincomalee, Jaffna, Mannar, Arugam Bay

August-September elephant gathering at Minneriya and Kaudulla

The North Eastern Monsoon

December to February

Rainy season in the dry zone

Frequent showers in Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee or Jaffna

An ideal to visit the south and western beaches

Best time to visit Colombo, Kandy, Galle or Nuwara Eliya

Whale watching season at Mirissa

See the amazing wildlife in Udawalawe or Yala National Park

Horton Plains National Park and Knuckles Mountain range

Pilgrimage season of holy Adam’s Peak

In Summary - The Best time to visit Sri Lanka.

If you are visiting Colombo, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya, or Galle on the South and western side, the best period is December to April. Catch some waves and chill out on splendid beaches in southern coastal areas including Weligama, Tangalle, Hiriketiya, Hikkaduwa, Mirissa, or Unawatuna Bay.

If you are visiting Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Trincomalee, or Jaffna on the North and Eastern coast, the period between May to September is best. Enjoy the pristine beaches of the north, northwest, and eastern coast and ride the waves at Arugam bay or Kalpitiya.

Overall, January, February, March, and April are the best time to visit Sri Lanka when most of the parts of the island are not affected by monsoons. This period is the peak season of tourism, while the months from May to October are the low season of tourism.

The unique feature of totally different weather in different parts of the country attracts a lot of visitors to Sri Lanka as a year-round destination. Whatever time of the year you travel, you can arrange a satisfying itinerary to enjoy the best weather. 

So we would recommend….

Choose your destination to avoid monsoons to have an incredible holiday in Sri Lanka. 

The Best Time to Visit Sri Lanka Read More »

Relax by the Natural Spring Fed Swimming Pool at GlenMyu Estate, Hotel and Bed & Breakfast, Haputale, Sri Lanka.

Where can I relax in Sri Lanka?

Where can I relax in Sri Lanka?

We have found that travellers exploring Sri Lanka want to do too much in a their limited time on the Island. Instead of ticking off as many sites as you can we would recommend setting aside a day or two to relax whilst in Sri Lanka.

Starting with the beach

Several of our guests in 2022 have started with a trip to the southern beaches such as Tangalle, Mirissa, Hireketiya, and Hikkaduwa.

Coming from a European winter it is a good place to start and work on a tan. And also getting some much needed vitamin D.

Relaxing at the beach in Sri Lanka

A Safari, a Hike, a Temple, a Train Ride, a Waterfall, a Tea Factory Tour, Whale watching and so on.

There are so many things to do on this small island that you can get exhausted trying to for too much in during a short holiday. 

Although Sri Lanka is a small island (similar in size to Ireland), it does take far longer to travel around than you would anticipate.

A recent guest compared travelling 160 kilometres in Australia to Sri Lanka. It would be around two hours in Australia and around four and a half to five hours in Sri Lanka.

This really does take a large chunk out of your holiday.

We experienced a similar challenge when we did a camper van holiday around South Island New Zealand. It too far longer to get from one place to another and we were quite tired from the travelling.

The Heat and the Activities

It is amazing what energy tropical heat can sap from a visitor who is used to a Northern hemisphere climate.

Ambitions of doing so much in a climate one is not used to can be quite tiring.

I remember when I used to ski in Canada every year and I should have exercised those muscles that I needed before attempting the slopes. Well, I never did and it took a while for my body to get conditioned to the environment. It turned out that I was exhausted at the end of every day – thank goodness for apres ski!

Perhaps working on those muscles that you will be using for a hike in Sri Lanka should also be conditioned before coming on holiday? Sitting behind a desk on a computer for most of the day (and evening) and doing a few kilometres on the treadmill at the gym won’t do it! 

Who would enter a marathon without doing some training working your way up to the 26 miles?

It’s not just the hiking that saps your energy. Even being driven around when there is so much to see and take in is also very tiring.

A lovely couple arrive who admirably had completed the hike up Adams Peak the previous evening and enjoyed the sunrise. They had ambitions of going to Horton Plains National Park the next day and seeing some of the Waterfalls nearby. 

The next morning they had trouble even walking!

After accepting that they had planned to do too much they changed their plans. Instead they had a fabulous few days at GlenMyu Estate relaxing, exploring the five acres. They also enjoyed dips into the waterfall and also our Natural Spring Fed Infinity swimming pool.

Where can I relax in Sri Lanka? Well, GlenMyu Estate appears to be a good place according to our guests.

Relax in Sri Lanka at GlenMyu Estate and enjoy some delicious food.
The Luxurious Mango bedroom at GlenMyu Estate, Hotel, Bed and Breakfast, Haputale, Sri Lanka. Wonderful for Valentine's Day in Sri Lanka
Relax by the Natural Spring Fed Swimming Pool at GlenMyu Estate, Hotel and Bed & Breakfast, Haputale, Sri Lanka.

Here are a few comments from our guest from Booking.Com

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A view from the lawn of the the house at GlenMyu Estate, Hotel and Bed & Breakfast, Haputale, Sri Lanka.

Unique Hotels in Sri Lanka

Unique Hotels in Sri Lanka

There is a drive for holidays to be about new experiences. People want to be off the regular tourist routes. They want to do something that differs from what everyone else is doing. There are some unique hotels in Sri Lanka and perhaps GlenMyu Estate can be considered one of them.

People now want unique experience and that includes discovering and enjoying new types of accommodation.

At GlenMyu Estate, we hope that we provide that new experience that is something. Something a little bit different, from which you will find on your tour of this Paradise Island.

There are some spectacular hotels in fabulous setting around Sri Lanka.
We would never purport today that we can compete with many of the luxurious stays around the island.

There are superb Colonial Bungalows such as Thotalagala, Scottish Planters Bungalow and Mountbatten Bungalow (and many more).

There are five star beach hotels around the coast providing wonderful experiences by the beach with fabulous sunsets. Notable ones include the Galle Face Hotel Colombo, Jetwing Blue Negombo and Maalu Maalu, Pasikuda amongst many others.

There are hotels looking onto UNESCO heritage sites such as Alia Hotel which has a superb view of the Lion Rock.

There are Ayurvedic hotels providing a place of calm and healing such as Saman Villas and Ayurvie Weligama

i Weligama.

When you visit Sri Lanka on holiday you have a variety of styles and experiences at different price points and standards.

There are a great many home-stays around the country which offer an experiencer to get to understand the ways of life for most of the population on the island.

What makes a unique hotel in Sri Lanka?

Well, I suppose it must be something different.

Does GlenMyu Estate fit the definition of a unique hotel in Sri Lanka.

Small and beautiful

We feel that the Covid pandemic has shifted the demand for larger hundred room plus hotels towards smaller personal spaces. 

We only have three bedrooms available for guests at GlenMyu Estate which gives a sense of uniqueness and privacy. We have several pathways around the five acre estate which means that you can always have space for yourself. 

Limiting the number of guests also ensures that there is no pressure on using the swimming pool. We do not have to allocate slots like other hotels.

Being small also means that we don’t offer large buffets and a large range of menu options for meals. Ruwanthi discusses each meal with our guests and makes fresh bespoke dishes for our clients. 

A holiday in a “Grand Designs” home?

Ruwanthi and I loved watching the Grand Designs series whilst we were living in the UK. The presenter, Kevin McCloud, has a soothing, comforting and calming voice whilst narrating the builders struggles as they try to create their dream home.

One of our recent guests tried to describe GlenMyu Estate and said that it was like holidaying in a Grand Designs home. What a good idea for a holiday!

GlenMyu Estate is certainly Ruwanthi’s creation and our struggle and we are touched that a guest would describe it in that way. 

Like the other couples, we are just delighted that we finished the project, still together and over budget like everyone else!

Decide for yourself!

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

We think it is the right of our guests to decide whether GlenMyu Estate fits into the category of a unique hotel in Sri Lanka.

Whatever your decision, we love it here, and hope that you do too.

Where is GlenMyu Estate?

Find out more at our website GlenMyu Estate, Haputale

Unique Hotels in Sri Lanka Read More »

Sri Lanka Tourism

Sri Lanka Tourism

A special area to explore in the Pearl of the Indian Ocean.

The Beach or the Hills - maybe a little of both?

Probably the first image that comes to mind is that of pristine beaches, lined by coconut trees with the sun glistening on the sand. 

Other images of Sri Lanka could be ……

Fishermen stilt fishing

Boats parked on the sand ready to be hauled into the blue sea for their next adventure.

A couple walking hand in hand making tracks in the unspoilt sand.

King Coconut being served with two straws providing you with an opportunity to share your enjoyment of the natural tonic.

 

It’s unlikely to be Horton Plains National Park or other experiences around the Island.

A small Island with so many things to do

I always say to people that have not been to Sri Lanka that the Island packs a large punch for its size.

There are so many (too many for a short holiday) things to do on this Island that you cannot see everything in one vacation.

So what is there to do apart from topping up the tan on the beach?

Well, firstly, there are beaches and there are beaches!

The Best Places to Stay

The beaches around the island all have their unique appeal and they are very different and offering a variety of things to do for a tourist.

Negombo has a beautiful beach with pristine sand and a idyllic view to the ocean. It is a main stop off point within reach of the airport and therefore is quite popular with lots of tourists using the various hotels in the area,

As you go south you reach Bentota which is also a very well established beach destination for visitors to the Island. It has a slightly different vibe to Negombo and the sand feels a little bit more granular.

The South coast beaches of Mirissa, Tangalle, Hikkaduwa and so on are a great place to top up the tan or do some surfing. The development of the highway going south from the airport means that some of the south coast beaches can be reached within 2.5 to 3 hours.

Arugum Bay is another well established surfing destination and has another different vibe. 

If you travel slightly north of Arugam Bay you will come across Whisky Point which has a completely different type of beach and is quite empty.

As you head northwards up the East coast you come across Passikuda, Trincomalee and then eventually Jaffna. The beach shelves here are much shallower than those on the other coasts making them a bit safer.

Coming back down from the North to the West coast you will come across Kalpiiya where you can Kite Surf.

We love to stay at Maalu Maalu which is one of Theme Resorts https://www.themeresorts.com hotels in Passikusa which has a very safe each with a shallow shelf.

A word of warning however!

Before you decide on which beach you choose you need to know whether the waters are safe.
The North East Monsoon and South West Monsoons determine whether it is worth travelling to the beaches as each area has a season where it is worth avoiding and you will not be topping up any tan!

So many things to do

Sri Lanka has

Temples

Safaris

Elephant Orphanges

Whale Watching

Turtle Sanctuaries

Surfing and snorkelling

Fishing

Sailing

Hiking

Historic buildings and architecture

Great railway journeys

A variety of wildlife

Different cuisines around the Island

Do I need to go on?

A little less explored

At GlenMyu Estate we are finding that several of our guests want to do something a little bit different or unique and slightly off the tourist trail.

Some arrive exhausted after a hike to Adams Peak or through Knuckles Mountain range.

Haputale - set in the Central Hill Country

There are lots to do and explore around Haputale, Ella and Bandarawella.

GlenMyu Estate is located within reach of these towns and several of the tourist sights are nearby. To find our more about GlenMyu Estate please click on the following link  https://resortglenmyu.com

Whats there to do near Haputale?

There are lots of tourist sites nearby including the following

Horton Plains National Park which includes Worlds End and Bakers Falls http://www.dwc.gov.lk/Aoldsite/library/Np_Hotonplains.html

Lipton Seat

Diyaluma Waterfall

Bambarakanda Waterfall

Addisham Bungalow

Pilkington Point

Millennium Point

Bakers Bends

Ella Town

Nine Arch Bridge

Ella Gap

Ravanna Falls

The most popular site our guests visit is Horton Plains National Park. We love it there.

 We send our guests off with a packed breakfast early in the morning so that they have the chance to see the views at Mini Worlds End and Worlds End.

Horton Plains National Park.
The Samba Deer at Horton Plains National Park.
Horton Plains National Park.

How to get to GlenMyu Estate?

The nearest railway station is Haputale which is on the beautiful stretch from Ella to Nanuoya (Nuwara Eliya). We are a short taxi or Tuk Tuk ride away and are located between Beragala Junction and Koslanda towards Wellawaya.

Please see where GlenMyu Estate is on the following map.

GlenMyu Estate is a great place to relax and take a breather on what can be an exhausting tour around the Island.

We find that many guests book for one night and then extend by a day or two.

Once you are here you will realise that GlenMyu Estate is not a place for a one night stay.

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