Category Archives: Indian Ocean

Souvenirs to Take Back Home from Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka – the island nation is quite popular among tourists for shopping besides its endless beaches, adventurous water sports, timeless ruins and flavourful food. There are several street markets across the cities in Sri Lanka selling anything and everything at great prices. Check out below some of the amazing souvenirs you must take back home from Sri Lanka:

Sri Lanka Souvenirs Gems and Jewellery

If you did not know earlier, let us tell you that Sri Lanka is famous for its sapphires and moonstones. The island is known for designing wonderful jewellery out of gems and metal. While you can purchase gems from all over the country, Unawatuna and Kandy are home to some of the best big and small gem stores. Besides, watching the mining process through a film at various museums is an amazing experience here.


The island’s local and traditional clothing for women is saree. Osaria or Kandyan and Indian are the popular styles of wearing a saree in Sri Lanka. The Osaria or Kandyan style is majorly popular in Kandy. There’s a popular saree shop in almost all markets across Sri Lanka. From the local street shops at Pettah market to the upscale shops in Kandy and Colombo, there is a shop for every budget, and you are certain to be in love with the quality, styles and prices.

Sri Lanka Souvenirs Buddha figurines

As you all know most of the Sri Lankan people believe in Buddhism, you are certain to find several classic souvenir shops all around the country selling beautiful Buddha figurines. These shops are called Laksala. You can get the figurines in different forms and sizes; and not just Buddha; these shops also sell wonderful figurines of elephants, peacocks, leopards, as well as various handcrafted items. Colombo is the best place to grab these figurines and you can also explore Paradise Road to buy some handmade figurines and statues of good quality at great prices.

Sri Lanka Souvenirs Ceylon Tea

It is a known fact that Sri Lanka owns a large number of tea plantations in its central area; and Ceylon tea is called to be the original tea of Sri Lanka. There are many tea gardens, tea factories and shops all over the country to try and buy different tea flavours. Black tea is the traditional tea of Sri Lanka but you are sure to be in love with various other varieties such as English Breakfast, Chocolate Mint, Peach & Mint, Orange Broken Peko and more. Dilmah, Teaeli and Macwoods are the most popular brands.

Sri Lanka Souvenirs Beauty products

There is no doubt that most of the tourists flock in the island to simply relax and rejuvenate with spa and beauty treatments. While you can get healing Ayurvedic treatments here, you can also buy various Ayurvedic beauty products such as hair care packs, body washes, shampoos, body oils, face packs & masks, and more. If you shop for these products, go for the popular brands like Spa Ceylon, Siddhalepa, and Iris Garden.

Learn About the Culture of Maldives through These Festivals and Events

Maldives has always been world-renowned for its pristine beaches, luxury resorts and thrilling adventures, however, there’s much more to the island nation. This land of exotic island beaches Maldives celebrates an array of events – be it national occasion or spiritual festivals, with extreme fervour and enthusiasm attracting people from all walks of life; and each event has its own importance among the natives of the island as well as tourists.

Read on to know about some of the top events and festivals celebrated in Maldives:


Since Maldives is entirely an Islamic country, Ramadan is one most important festival celebrated here each year. Also known as “Rorda Mas”, the festival has a lot of religious reverence. It is a month long festival held in the months of August and September, which is called the 9th month of Islamic calendar; and all the Muslims fast for 30 days. It is an ideal time to sample some of the amazing local foods and delicacies in the entire nation.


Eid-Ul-Adha is one of the major religious festivals in Maldives which is also known as Eid-e Qorban, Qurbani Eid and the Festival of Sacrifice. It marks the end of the Hajj pilgrimage and is celebrated on the 10th day of the Thul Hijjah as per the Muslim calendar. People from different parts of the world visit here to be a part of this four-day festival that begins after the early Morning Prayer and exchanging of gifts and is followed by an array of events including music concerts, traditional dances, sports competitions and some older Eid customs.

Independence Day

Independence Day in Maldives has a lot of significance as the day celebrates the freedom of the country from Britain. This day is held annually on July 26, and it is considered to be a perfect time to be in this fascinating destination. All the islands of the nation are filled with parades, performances, food and various festivities exhibiting modern themes as well as traditional values. If you happen to spend your holiday on a resort island, you are certain to indulge in special novel experiences, activities, menus and spectacles.

The National Day

Also called Qaumee Dhuvas, Maldives National Day is held on the 1st of Rabee ul Awwal, the third month of the Islamic calendar. As the day celebrates the victory of Muhammad Thakurufaanu over the Portuguese in the year 1573, it is one most importance day in Maldives. It falls sometime in the month of February or March; and one will see a number of parades and marches all across the country. The capital of Maldives, Malé is the best place to experience the rich essence of the event.

Prophet’s Birthday

The 12th day of Rabee ul Awwal – the third month of the Islamic calendar, Prophet’s Birthday is an ideal day to have an intriguing cultural experience in Maldives. As the day celebrates the birthday of holy prophet Mohammad, it has a lot of religious significance for the Muslims. He was the one who advocated the concept of “Oneness of God (Allah) in the nation. The event takes place on a grand scale and the mosques in the capital as well as all around the country are crowded with worshippers.

Shopping in Seychelles: Five Popular Things to Shop in the Island

While Seychelles is a tourist destination drawing luxury travellers from across the globe to experience the best of beaches and adventures, shopping lovers can take back home an array Shopping in Seychellesof interesting things from here. If you are planning a holiday to the island anytime soon, do not forget to spare some time shopping these amazing souvenirs: Seychelles

Coco De Mer

One of the biggest nuts in the world, Coco De Mer is certainly the most iconic thing to buy in the island. Also known as sea nuts, these nuts are indeed hard to crack, and are conveniently available on Mahe and Praslin islands. You will have to take care of a few things while purchasing these nuts such as they must have holographic stickers and come with an official permit. You cannot leave the country with a coco de mer without proper certification; and if you do so, you may be charged a fine or possibly even sent to prison. The legal ones would be hollowed out, weighing around 5 KG.

Kreolor Jewellery and Craft

A major draw among jewellery lovers, Kreolor Jewellery and Craft is a popular jewellery and craft manufacturer in Seychelles selling jewellery designed using the skills of specially trained Seychellois goldsmiths and craftsmen. The company has five stores across Mahe, Praslin and La Digue. You can visit there and buy tastefully designed jewellery carrying true Seychelles spirit. You can also get your hands on exclusive crafts prepared using local materials at the stores.

Yi-King Essential Oils

Yi-King Essential Oils are the essential oils made from the finest Seychelles ingredients and loved by travellers from all over the world. These oils got their name from a French aroma therapist living on Mahe Island who created them. The oils have been created based on a person’s date of birth and are related to the eight master elements recognised by Chinese medicine including sky, wind, earth, mountain, water, thunder, fire and lake. You can purchase them from the top hotel spas in Seychelles including Denis Island Resort, Constance Lémuria, Constance Aphelia and the Hilton.

Black pearls

You cannot go back home from Seychelles without purchasing black pearls, one of the most beautiful things the island owns. These pearls from Black Pearl Ocean Farm located on the island of Praslin, close to the airport are a specialty of the island. The black pearls are not necessarily black; they range from a light silvery to very dark grey and they may also look pink, blue, green, lavender, copper, bronze or golden. They are priced according to their colour, lustre, shape, size, surface perfection and nacre thickness.

Takamaka Rum

Quite popular among rum lovers from different parts of the world, Takamaka Rum is one thing in the island for which you can seal the deal in an instant. It is amazing, local rum; particularly the dark spiced rum distilled, aged and blended in the Seychelles at the Trois Frères Distillery in Mahe Island. It is traditionally served as a post-meal drink in the island and much loved my local residents. You cannot miss to grab your hand on Takamaka Rum if you are out for food shopping in the island. You can also try here coco rum, white rum, extra dark and aged varieties.

Top 5 National Parks to Discover in Sri Lanka


Sri Lanka is not just about endless beaches, rolling surf and eternal sunshine, there’s a lot more to this Indian Ocean destination. Its sprawling national parks are among its major draws. The unique and diverse wildlife including Asian elephants and Sri Lankan leopards attract wildlife and nature lovers from far and wide. Here are some of the top national parks of Sri Lanka:

Pigeon Island National Park

A place where you can experience beach vibe as well as exciting wildlife, Pigeon Island National Park is one of the most famous marine national parks in the island country. It is the only place in Sri Lanka to discover a variety of blue rock pigeons. The park comprises two islands – the small pigeon island and the large pigeon island; and you can spot plenty of sea life including blacktip reef sharks and Hawksbill turtle. Besides, water sports enthusiasts can indulge in excellent snorkelling opportunities offered here.

Yala National Park


Considered to be the second largest and the most popular eco-tourism destination in Sri Lanka, Yala National Park is a true wildlife delight in the country. It is famous for spotting elephants, birds, buffaloes as well as the big cats, the leopards. You can plan a visit to the park with your family and friends at any time of the year and can enjoy the beaches, safaris, bird watching and a host of other things to do amidst its diverse landscape.

Udawalawe National Park


Lying on the boundary of the dry and wet zones of Sri Lanka, Udawalawe National Park is the third-most visited national park in Sri Lanka. If you wish to witness elephants in the wild, this is the place to be. Apart from the Sri Lankan elephants, you will also get a chance to spot other habitants including sambar deer, mongooses, wild buffalo, water monitor lizard, jackals, leopards, sloth bears, snakes and turtles. Bird watchers can enjoy spotting endemic bird species here such as red-faced malkoha, brown-capped babbler, Sri Lanka spurfowl and Sri Lanka grey hornbill and more.

Bundala National Park

Bundala National Park is a UNESCO biosphere reserve and is home to nearly 200 species of birds making an excellent choice for birders. The park is open all year-round; and most of the people visit the park on jeep tours from Tissamaharama, a town in the Southern province of Sri Lanka. The Greater Flamingo, Painted Stork and Eurasian Spoonbill are the major bird species to spot here. Reach the park early morning to start your jungle exploration, and you will have a good chance to spot crocs, wild boar, monitor lizards, mongooses, monkeys and elephants.

Minneriya National Park


One of the best places in Sri Lanka to see Asian elephants, Minneriya National Park is popular among tourists for its wonderful safaris and camping. It is situated in the dry zone of Sri Lanka; and May to October is the best time to visit here when you can spot the largest gathering of the wild elephants. Plenty of scrub, forest and wetlands within the park draw huge crowds of nature lovers from all around. You will also have an opportunity to witness toque macaques, sambar deer, buffalo, crocodiles and leopards.

Five of the Most Stunning Seychelles Beaches

Called “the island of love”, Seychelles is a true beach haven in the Indian Ocean with numerous beaches brimming with powdery sands, translucent warm waters and lush jungle landscapes. Beach bums can experience the best of sun, sand and surf amidst these sparkling beaches that are known for their aquatic delights and thrilling water sports opportunities.

Seychelles Beaches
Here are five of the most stunning Seychelles beaches you can explore:

Anse Intendance

The most unspoiled spot on Mahé Island, Anse Intendance is a beach haven with perfect turquoise water, powder-fine white sand, thickly-vegetated mountain backdrop and impressive granite formations. With some of the finest waves along the island, it is a perfect place for surfers. However, the beach is not protected by a reef and thus, does not make for an ideal swimming spot. One can stay at Banyan Tree, a five-star resort along Anse Intendance coastline to experience true glamour and luxury of the Seychelles.

Beau Vallon

Situated on the north coast of Mahé Island, Beau Vallon is one of the longest beaches here with a wide bay and calm, gentle waters. It is the most popular beach in the island offering wonderful diving and snorkelling opportunities due to its clear waters and coral reefs. Here many visitors are witnessed picnicking and playing music under takamaka trees. You can also explore a number of vendors selling Creole cuisine, drinks and clothing along the crescent-shaped coastline of the beach.

Anse Lazio

Considered to be the best on Praslin Island by Lonely Planet, Anse Lazio is an ideal beach with gorgeous blue, clear waters and golden sands. It has one of the most romantic settings on the island appealing to honeymooners from different parts of the world. Ideally popular for relaxing, sunbathing, swimming and snorkelling, the beach makes for an amazing holiday spot with a picture-postcard scene. Besides, you would love to watch the sunrise here creating a magical aura that is a treat for sore eyes.

Anse Georgette

With an ideal mix of bright turquoise ocean surface, pristine white sands and tropical palm trees, Anse Georgette is considered to be second among the best beaches in Seychelles. Located right next to the Constance Lemuria Hotel, it is a small but sensational stretch of sand with lush green trees fringing its coastline. What makes this beach unique and special is it is a pure white sand stretch with no coral or rocks. Besides, the beach offers best snorkelling opportunities for water sports lovers.

Grand Anse

An imposing sand bay, Grand Anse is one of the three widest and longest beaches on the Mahé Island. It is known for its crystal-clear waters and features a background boasting lush green mountains. Visitors can take a relaxing walk along this long stretch of shoreline and delight in the beauty of the rolling waves. The beach has strong currents and no corals, making it an ideal haven for surfing. Swimming is not recommended along most of the beach; however, it is a perfect spot for experienced swimmers.

Discover the Many Charms of the Seychelles with these Wonderful Experiences


The Seychelles is a tropical heaven in the Indian Ocean with more than 100 islands blessed with divine beaches fringed by translucent warm waters, isolated bays, terrific mountain areas and lush green spaces. Along with having a good time at the beaches of the country, travellers can have an exciting time enjoying the different unique activities here. Take a look!

Hike on the Mahe Island

Most of the inner islands of the Seychelles like the Mahe Island are made of granite. Enjoy amazing hikes on the Mahe Island and take in the stunning views of the natural beauty of the region. Mount Copolia, Anse Major Trail, Morne Blanc and Morne Seychellois are some major hiking spots here and will take you across cinnamon and rubber tree forests, mosses and ferns while presenting many thrilling experiences.

Kayak through the mangroves

The ideal way to explore the calm turquoise waters is to kayak through the mangroves across the islands. With so many islands in close proximity to each other, the Seychelles is a perfect sea kayaking destination for adventure seekers. North Island is one major kayaking destination here where families and couples can enjoy a gentle work-out, paddling in the light swell while taking delight in terrific views of the crystal clear waters all around.

Ride a horse

Tourists are seen enjoying a horseback ride on the stunning Seychelles beaches and through the captivating island forests all throughout the year. Turquoise Horse Trails, located on the west coast of Mahe Island, are extremely popular with the travellers, promising them a scenic ride through forest, mangrove marshes, and along the shores Barbarons and Grand Anse beaches.

Witness turtle nesting during daytime

You will be surprised to know that Seychelles is one of the very few places in the world where the Hawksbill turtles can be spotted nesting during the day. October and January are the two months to enjoy this scene in Seychelles. Come along with your whole family and witness these incredible events on North Island!

Enjoy Moutya dance

Moutya is a slow, traditional dance originated on the Seychelles among Creole slaves but is now celebrated all across the island. A number of hotels across the island offer Moutya nights where many traditional dancers perform this bare-feet cultural dance. The music, played usually with three goatskin drums of different sounds and sizes, during the dance performance is a wonderful treat to the senses as well!

Top 5 Trekking Destinations in Sri Lanka

Boasting of alluring wilderness, Sri Lanka is a popular tourist destination in South-east Asia inviting adventure seekers from far and wide. From easy walks to more intense treks, there are plenty of hiking trails ensuring all sorts of trekking experiences to the travellers.

Trekking Destinations

Take a look at top five trekking destinations of Sri Lanka avid hikers should not miss exploring:

Ella Rock

A lovely, intimate town with a stunning countryside, Ella is a nature lover’s delight. Ella Rock, the highest cliff in the village, offers breathtaking views of the lush green meadows and tea plantations and is one of the best hikes in Sri Lanka. It is a day hike from the town in the highlands about 1000 metres above sea level that begins and ends at the Ella Railway Station. Surely, this beautiful hiking trail presents an incredible adventure experience.

Adam’s Peak

Lying 2243 metre above sea level, Adam’s Peak is the most popular hiking trail in Sri Lanka, visited by millions of tourists every year. Also famed as Butterfly Mountain or Samanala Kanda, this place is not just a natural landmark but has been a sacred place for more than 1000 years now. The trek begins from the far end of Dalhousie Village and hikers have to climb 5,200 odd stone stairs to reach the peak of the mountain. The mesmerising views of the rolling hills and tea plantations are treats to the hikers! You can start the trek in the night so you reach the top by early morning and can enjoy the stunning sunrise.

Hortons Plain National Park

Covered by montane grassland and cloud forest, Hortons Plain National Park is an area situated around 2000 metres above sea level in the Sri Lankan Highlands. The major draw of the plateau is that it comes to an abrupt end at the World’s End, a steep 800 metre fall overlooking the countryside. Be it the short one hour trails or the longer ones spanning the entire plateau, there are a number of options for trekkers on Horton Plain. An ideal combination of misty lakes, breezy grasslands and fresh waterfalls fills your trek with many exciting experiences.


Situated in the neighbourhood of Sigiriya, Pidurangala is a massive rock formation offering astounding hiking opportunities for travellers. The panoramic sight of the Sigiriya Fortress and a 360 degree view of the valley around are a treat for the sore eyes. It is advised to embark on your trekking journey at dawn and reach the top before the sunrise and start your day with a delicious breakfast at a perfect picnic spot on the top of the rock.

Knuckles Range

Situated in the Central Highlands between the regions of Matale and Kandy, Knuckles Range is an amazing adventure spot in Sri Lanka. Abundant with a variety of waterfalls, vegetation and villages, the range ensures a thrilling trekking experience for visitors. Be it a one-day trek to one of the lowest peaks or a three-day two-night expedition to Meemure, there are a number of hiking options for all sorts of trekkers here.

Top 5 Cultural and Religious Sites of Sri Lanka

One of the finest travel destinations in the Southeast Asia, Sri Lanka has a rich culture, traditions and heritage! The cultural depth of Sri Lanka is recognised by UNESCO and appeals to the senses of travellers from across the globe.

Take a look at some of the prominent sites to get an insight into the island’s rich heritage:

Adam’s Peak

Located in the south of the central highlands, Adam’s Peak is a 2243 metre high mountain capturing the attention of tourists from all over the world. It has been a holy place for over 1000 years now. The unique rock formation is believed to be the footprint of Shiva among Hindus, Adam among Christians and Muslims, and Buddha among Buddhists. Also known as Samanala Kanda or Butterfly Mountain, it is also an ideal trekking destination in Sri Lanka.

World Buddhist Museum

The world’s first international museum, World Buddhist Museum is a major attraction of the island country. Situated next to the popular Temple of the Tooth and National Museum in Kandy, it is where you can learn about the fundamentals of Buddhism and its global history. Established with contributions of 17 nations, the museum boasts of individual exhibits on each of those countries. A large number of tourists pay a visit to the museum every year.

Dambulla Cave Temple


Also known as the golden temple of Dambulla, Dambulla Cave Temple is one of the most famous religious sites in Sri Lanka. It is the largest cave temple in the country lying at an elevation of 1118 feet from the sea level. The temple houses five caves, three statues of the kings of Sri Lanka, four statues of gods and goddesses and 153 statues of the Lord Buddha.

Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic

Nestled on the edge of Lake Kandy, Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic is a major draw among pilgrims as well as the tourists. It is the only temple in the world with a tooth relic of Lord Buddha. Also famed as Sri Dalada Maligawa, this temple is centuries old. Besides enjoying a tour of the temple, you must take some time to sightsee around the city and take in the beauty of the place.

Sigiriya Rock Fortress


The ‘Eighth Wonder of the World’, Sigiriya Rock Fortress is one of the key historical monuments of Sri Lanka. Situated on a massive rocky plateau between the towns of Dambulla and Harbarane, the fortress is the single most dramatic site of the country. Comprising of remnants of a ruined palace surrounded by vast gardens, canals, fountains and alleys, it is an ideal spiritual as well as peaceful haven. Do remember to climb up through a stone-made stairway and witness the exclusive features of the complex that used to be the home of King Kasyapa.

5 of the Best Holiday Experiences for Families in Sri Lanka


Sri Lanka surely has a lot to offer to the honeymooners but even the families can have many wonderful experiences here. Read on to know about some of them.

Go for White Water Rafting in Kitulgala

If adventure delights you and your family, you must make your way to the picturesque Kelani Ganga River and experience the thrill of white water rafting. You can take your kids, who are above the age of 10, along with you and have a memorable experience while enjoying the picturesque surroundings. The raft covers the distance of around 5kms; you are provided with modern rafts, safety gear and a comprehensive safety briefing by the instructors beforehand.

Take a scenic train ride

The island of Sri Lanka is well-renowned for its scenic train rides. One of the most exciting rail routes is between two hillside towns, from Nuwara Eliya to Ella that will leave you amazed. Take this beautiful ride with your family and create unforgettable memories as you enjoy the views of the rolling emerald hills and tea plantations. The train takes you through the countryside and 21 narrow tunnels.

Climb Little Adam’s Peak

A hiking hotspot in Sri Lanka, Little Adam’s Peak in Ella is the highest summit on the island, offering ideal trekking opportunities for tourists including children. This trek of 4kms takes you through the tea plantations and presents stunning views of the hill station of Ella. Besides, a spectacular 360-degree view from the top of the peak, including the beautiful Ruwana Falls, is a sight to behold.

Take a stroll along the beach

Sri Lankan beaches with their clear blue waters and sandy sunsets promise a delightful time to you and your loved ones. You can have an enjoyable family time while catching some sun rays at Passekudah Bay, become an adventure enthusiast doing water sports at Hikkaduwa or dance your night away at Unawatuna beach.

Discover an elephant orphanage

If you like picnicking with your family and your kids are elephant lovers, the Pinnawela Elephant Orphange is the perfect spot to be at! Your kids would love to watch the elephants being bathed, fed and well-nursed to good health here. They get a chance to get close to them and feed these gentle animals. The orphanage also organises many educational programmes where kids can learn more about caring for the elephants.

Street Shopping in Mauritius: 5 Most Popular Markets of this Pristine Island

Popularly known for its cobalt-blue seas, white-sand beaches and luxury resorts, Mauritius is a traveller’s paradise in the Indian Ocean presenting a relaxing holiday experience for all.


Though people visit this mesmerising land for an ideal beach vacation, street shopping in Mauritius is the most indulging and exciting experience, offering plenty for every budget, from surgically carved handicrafts to nostril-tingling rum.

Read on and know about some of the best street markets in Mauritius:

Port Louis Central Market

A huge market in the capital city of Mauritius, the Central Market is popular among locals as “Bazaar Port Louis”. The market is operational since Victorian times and is where you can shop for local clothing, artisanal jewellery, musical instruments, glass sculptures and various handcrafted goods. You will find the market crowded even during the weekdays and can utilise your bargain skills to get the best deals.

Le Craft Market

Located in Port Louis close to the central market, Le Craft Market welcomes visitors with a refreshing fragrance of the scent of teak meddled with mahogany. The market houses 36 stalls spread over two floors wrapped in warm tropical colours in a cosy atmosphere. You can have a long stroll through the market and shop for colourful beach sarongs, semi-precious stones, wooden sculptures, embroidered linen, spices, a unique array of regional handicraft and cultural traditions from Mauritius, Madagascar and Rodrigues, and the sought-after Mauritian RUM.

The Mahebourg Market

A unique market in the fishing village of Mahebourg which is open only once a week on Monday, the Mahebourg Market is just a walk away from the sea and astonishes visitors with an array of colonial buildings. It is the most bargain-friendly market in Mauritius where you can buy some local crafts and fantastic souvenirs. Food lovers can try here a number of traditional dishes such as Dholl Puri, biryani, Chinese noodles and a variety of Creole and Mauritian cuisines. Besides, you can also get your hands of some traditional Indian and Chinese goods, local spices, fruits, vegetables, electronics and a lot more.

The Flacq Market

The largest open market in Mauritius, the Flacq Market is an ideal place to sharpen your bargain skills, to purchase souvenirs to take back home and to see locals shopping for their daily needs. The tropical fruits and sweets stalls in the market are a treat to watch and appeal visitors to purchase some. The market is quite busy on all days; however, it is a better option to visit on weekends. Moreover, there is no chance you’ll not buy a few t-shirts, hats, and some local tea from here.

The Quatre-Bornes Market Fair

A delightful, merry market place, the fair of Quantre-Bornes is where you can treat your eyes to the beauty of a variety of lined-stalls. Opened on Tuesdays and Sundays only, this ephemeral market is where you can shop for garments and fashion accessories. It is an ideal shopping paradise for Mauritian shoppers, and appeals visitors with its reasonable prices. You can buy sweaters and fleece clothing during winters and get your hands on some cool T-shirts and shorts in bright colours during summers. Besides, you should not miss trying the famous dishes served here such as gato-piment, samosas and gato arouille.