Day 26 – Sinharaja rainforest to Bentota 🇱🇰

Our last morning at Nestwood, we’re up early and go for another walk down the hill and through the tea plantations, followed by Misty. We pass a small basic house up on a hill and swarms of children scream and shout BYEEEE at us as loud as they can. We’re not sure but think maybe Bye is like Hi so sort of works both ways. These children are Tamil children whose parents are likely to be tea pickers, we learnt that their daily wage is around $3-$5 and that most don’t send their children to school. School is free in Sri Lanka, but still costs money in the sense of parents have to buy uniform, books, pencils and pay for exams so for many this is still unaffordable.

We head back to the bungalow for our breakfast feast, and then pack up our bags ready for departure. We settle our bill and realise that Nadintha has not charged us for the lunches, bottled water or smoothies he’s served us every day, he tells us ‘this was from them’. Considering the amazing food we’ve had the price we paid was tiny, costing around £30 in total for four three-course dinners.

Processed With Darkroom

We pose for a selfie with our new friend and load our bags onto the jeep for the bumpy ride back down to the main road. This time we’re dropped off at the bosses house, he’s not in, but we wait and our taxi picks us up. Our journey to Bentota takes around 1 hr 45 minutes.

We arrive at our hotel Rockery Villa and check into our room. We then go pretty much straight out for a walk, pick up some lunch from a bakery (a bit like Greggs) called Perera and Sons, we try various pastries followed by a cake. Then we journey on to find the beach. We walk along a very busy main road with buses screeching past, there must be a better route than this we thought.

Eventually we found the beach, probably the best looking beach we’ve seen in Sri Lanka. A large stretch of soft sand and a relatively calm sea. Along the beach is a collection of high end resorts, we looked at some of these when we were looking for a hotel, the cheapest rooms we could find were £200 a night, so we opted for Rockery Villa at £60! On our way back we found a shorter more peaceful route along a quiet road.

 

Tonight we go out for dinner at a place called Malli’s Seafood Restaurant. It’s the most expensive place we’ve eaten during the trip, but still much less than UK prices. We’re seated at our table, and then shown the catch of the day, a seafood cabinet. Ryan chooses Sear Fish, not really knowing what it is and Lisa chose the jumbo prawns. When our food arrived we’re served a coconut roti, along with garlic sauce and a tomato salad, this is delicious, a little bit like a Sri Lankan bruschetta.