JOIN ME IN AN INTERVIEW WITH BEV AND SHAMS ON COLOMBO
Bev is British by birth while Shams is from the capital city of Colombo in Sri Lanka but built a life in the south east of England. They met over 10 years ago and they both have a passion to travel. When Bev was on a working holiday visa to Australia it really started her passion for travel, and Shams big adventure was going to the UK.
WHICH IS THE BEST MONTH TO VISIT YOUR CITY AND WHY?
April and May would be the best months to travel, in April Colombo celebrates New Year on the 14th annually, and Vesak celebrations occur in May. As Sri Lanka is a tropical island, with 2 monsoon seasons a year. The conditions in Colombo in April is very hot, with the least amount of rainfall, yet in May it is merely cooler, with more rainfall.
WHICH IS THE MOST CONVENIENT AND FAVOURED TRANSPORT IN YOU CITY?
There are a number of favoured ways to travel to and in Colombo, the cheapest would be a bus or a train, but a tuk tuk is small and convenient way to get around the city, it can be a little bit more expensive depending on the distance. Many tuk tuk’s have meters and an additional Rs50 per kilometre.
WHAT ARE THE TOP 3 MUST VISIT PLACES IN YOUR CITY?
The old Dutch hospital, was once a hospital but has now been converted into restaurants, pubs and shops. Many local and traveller comes here for the relaxing atmosphere and the incredible food and drink.
Pettah market and surrounding areas is a very busy market with many colonial buildings and religious buildings in the surrounding area. You could pick up a bargain or just stroll around the streets to find some amazing buildings and architecture.
The Arcade and Independent square was once a mental asylum but has now been converted into restaurants, shops and a cinema. Independent Square is a popular location to exercise and family orientated before heading to the Arcade for an evening meal to replenish your energy.
WHICH IS THE MOST CELEBRATED HOLIDAY IN YOUR CITY?
Sinhala and Tamil New Year celebrations which occur on the 14 April annually. It is a time to bring the family together and is an auspicious time.
WHICH IS THE MOST HAPPENING AREA IN YOUR CITY AND WHY?
Galle face, as this is right on the sea front. Locals and foreigners come here for a stroll along the seafront, for families to bring their children or a romantic couple watching the sunset into the ocean beyond.
WHERE CAN YOU FIND AMAZING STREET FOOD IN YOUR CITY?
Galle Face, as many food venders lining the sea front with various varieties of food.
WHERE TO HEAD FOR AFFORDABLE SHOPPING?
House of fashion, for cheap clothing, sportswear, children’s toys and many more.
WHICH IS THE MOST LOVED LOCAL FOOD IN YOUR CITY BOTH SWEET AND SAVOURY?
The most loved savoury food, and one to eat when visiting Colombo or Sri Lanka is Kottu, it is made with roti which is shredded and fried with meat or vegetable curry. Egg or plain hoppers is another favourite food, this is made from pancake type mixture cooked in a dome shaped pan and with a fried egg cooked in the middle.
A sweet version of hoppers is called honey hoppers which is made from jaggery (a substance extracted from coconut palm which a sweetener) and is of a pancake mix and cooked in the same way.
WHICH SIDE OF THE ROAD DOES YOUR CITY DRIVE ON AND IS IT CYCLE FRIENDLY?
Vehicle’s drive on the left hand side of the road, and would definitely not be cycle friendly, the driving condition in the Colombo are incredibly dangerous for cyclist. Outside of the city, only a few daring locals will be found cycling.
WOULD YOU RECOMMEND ANY LOCAL APPS FOR TOURISTS?
‘Pick me’ is a great app to get a tut tuk, mini cars, and taxi’s and is reasonably priced but you do require a local sim card to use it. ‘Uber’ is also available in Colombo to find a taxi. ‘Yamu’ is good for finding local shops, restaurants and places to see and do.