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In this trip I travelled from Colombo to Arugam Bay, Ella, Hatton and back to Colombo. I had much fun and a wonderful time driving across Sri Lanka with my three Sri Lanka friends.

In the first leg of the trip, we shot the Perahera festival in Colombo. This ceremony fell in the month of August. It was a grand ceremony with thousands of people participating and performing. The elephants are the key highlight in the festival. I walked in the parade alongside the participants and made friends with some of the kids who were performing. I had an up-close-and personal encounter of the entire procession and captured the beauty of the full ceremony.

Next destination was Arugam Bay. It is one of the top surfer’s dream destinations. We arrived at night and woke up at 4 a.m.. We walked to the beach to capture the sunrise and watched the surfers carried their surfboards to catch the first waves. It was beautiful to watch the large waves dashing in and the surfers standing on the surfboards, riding on the crest of the waves.

From the sea, we journeyed on to Ella, which presents a great mountainous view. We spent the morning hiking and photographing the morning light that fell on the mountain range. It was breezy and the lights were beautiful. We sat at the edge of the mountain to enjoy the wind and feel the freedom of life.

Next up was Hatton, one of the most well-known tea plantations in Sri Lanka. One of my friends invited me to stay in the bungalow with a colonial ambience. It is located on the top of the mountain and is owned by the tea company. This bungalow is surrounded by high mountains, ensconcing it with a sense of tranquility. Visitors would experience the utmost relaxation and peace, and feel their tired soul rejuvenated. The surrounding view at Hatton is simply breathtaking. The morning lights penetrated the mist revealing layers and layers of mountains, it was absolutely gorgeous. I love the place and wish I could spend the rest of my life in such a place as beautiful as heaven. Click to view pictures.

But beyond the beautiful scenery are the beautiful people who serve us that make this place the highlight of the trip. An obliging butler and caretaker make us feel like a planter in the colonial era. They cooked and served us sumptuous meals ranging from western, Indian and of course the classic traditional Sri Lanka foods. The butler and caretaker were some of the most loyal people I have ever met. From the way they served, we could tell that they did it wholeheartedly. Imagine: we woke up at 5 a.m. to catch the sunrise and they brought the tea to our rooms to make sure that we had warm tea before we left the house. They also told us to eat the food while it was still hot. They serve people with great integrity and passion. Wow, where could we find people like them these days? I respect them for who they are, and there is something that I could learn from them, that is: to love what you do and do what you love.

The butler and caretaker’s lives were basically committed and dedicated to this house and the tea company. Their service makes me want to come back again. The food they cooked was the most delicious Sri Lanka food that I’d ever had.

It was an amazing journey and again it gave me a different experience and insight into life. Would you like to come with me? Would you like me to organize a trip like this for you? Ha ha ha :-D This coming November would be a good time to visit Sri Lanka and I am organizing a trip to Yala Wildlife National Park (where you could sit on a Land Rover to “hunt” for leopard), Ella (hiking) and Hatton (experience a tea planter’s lifestyle and visit some of the most peaceful and beautiful places you’ve ever known). The trip will be about 4-5 days. I would love to hear from you, write to one@alexsohphotography.com