this trip was long overdue for all of us. since migrating to canada when i was 3, i haven't been back. so my wife and i travelled back to our birth country, sri lanka, last year in 2012 for our late honeymoon and vacation.
when we were planning the trip, everyone had been warning me not to film - it was all due to the recent end of the civil war. what made it worse was that i carried a monopod - it gave people the impression that i was holding a "weapon". So to be on the safe side, i refrained from shooting people - which i totally regret.
my wife and i flew out mid april and our siblings joined us 2 weeks later. all 6 of us met up in colombo before we headed out to experience the whole country. while stayin in wellawatta, colombo - we bunked in a pretty cool penthous. there were 3 balconies, each the size of living rooms. the penthouse gave us a 360° view of wellawatta. we had visited the colombo zoo, it was a real bad experience - all the animals were in such bad shape as you will see in some of the clips. they were starving and their environment was horrible. i hope that gets fixed soon.
we started off our journey with our travels to jaffna. the highways are fantastic - very clean and smooth. we rented a 9 person van with the driver who stayed and drove us around for 4 weeks out of the 5 weeks we stayed. on our way to jaffna we stopped at vavuniya, where my dad is from, and had a bite to eat a local food stall - what an experience. our napkins and plates were old newspapers but we quickly adjusted to it. after our brief stop we continued on our way to jaffna but we had a military check up before crossing into it - everything was smooth. we stayed in achuveli where my uncle lives with his life as a small farmer. this village made us recognize how much all the small things matter - like every second day is when they get electricity in the evening. i got help my uncle bring the goats home from his farm after they got to roam around and eat - he raises them and sells them for income.
we spent 3-4 days there and continued on our way to nuwara eliya, where we found a house online. it had a fireplace, that was definitely a must as it was a cold there. did some small shopping and checked out the tea estates. we quickly made our way to our next stop to kandy but this time we took the train and met our driver at the kandy train stop. this was a beautiful experience - anyone who visits sri lanka should make this trip on the train.
our next lodging in kandy was also an online find - it was on trek to the top of a mountain - took 30mins to drive up the hill every time. this spot was perfect for some timelapses. we had a cook come with the lodge - he was fantastic - made some awesome authentic sri lankan cuisine. our rooms had some mesmerizing views. one of our favourite spots in kandy was the pinnawala elephant orphanage - such an eye opening experience. baby elephants play fighting, the trainers bathing them... all up close.
we then make our way over to my birth city, trincomalee. this time we ended up choosing a resort along the nilaveli beach area. since it was a new resort - we ended up being the only ones there and had the whole resort to ourselves. one day we decided to go out on a boat and visit the coral reefs and experience some local fishing - at some spots it looked like the fishermen were walking on water. i got to visit the temple where my mother and father got married, koneswara temple.
our last stop was to yala - i and my wife decided to stay at a small beach side lodge. our room was a hut made out of clay and had a beautiful view. the next morning we visited yala national park, it is known for leopards but unfortunately we did not get to see one but we did encounter gators, buffalos and elephants.
this trip was definitely an unforgettable one and i hope it gives justice to this travel film.
wishing everyone a warm and safe holiday from p-your vision.
Manfrotto 561B monopod
Nikkor 50mm, 85mm and 135mm