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Sri Lanka safety concerns - advice please
edited May 2009
India and Asia
I am hoping to travel to Sri Lanka, particularly Beruwala and Weligama in September 2009, obviously due to the political unrest, I am concerned about the safety of travelling there. Can anyone offer any advice please. Thanks in advance..
edited June 2011
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Just ignore the above comment from the 'expert'. I'm a sri lankan but living in the UK for the past 5 years. I've been to Sri Lanka for a holiday early of May 2009.
Nikki, trust my word, Sri Lanka is absolutely fine now.
There still will be few of check points but don't worry those army and police officers
are very friendly.
I can assure you about the safety in SL more than anytime now.
People who give comments about SL, they never been there.
There is no political unrest in Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka is having the most powerful government ever. Half of the opposition party have been joined with the current government within last 3 years.
I wish you good luck for your holiday, just go for it. I'm sure you will enjoy Beruwala and Weligama beaches for the fullest.
If you wanna see a comment from a person who's really been to SL, pls check this link;
edited June 2011
Removed by Owner
Don't worry about paying a visit to Sri Lanka from now onwards. Cos, the 30 years of civil war has finally ended, & the government forces have eliminated the roots & the cause for this war by killing the Terrorist leader. (just go through the web site www.defence.lk) There are no bombings in Sri Lanka now. The whole country is united now & is ruled by a very powerfull government.
I my self love beaches. Last week I paid a visit to Wadduwa with my wife. You will enjoy your stay in Sri Laka. Just consult a good travel agent.
James - I appreciate your comments on travel safety above. There are a few places that I would be very cautious about travelling, like Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, but most other places are safer than South Africa, where I am based!
I think the main point to make about travel safety is that the biggest threat is not political violence or war, but the more common dangers of motor vehicle accidents and sporting injuries.
Reading the above comments has just freaked me out a little, as my name is Niki and planning on spending 3 weeks in Sri Lanka in September, volunteering at Pinnewala Elephant Orphange and have been indecisive about reconsidering my plans because of the warnings - after reading comments above - I'm definitely going!
Any packing advice?
SL must be the nicest place for a holiday and now with the terrorism
eliminated safest place! You will thoroughly enjoy the scenery, cuisine
and most of all Srilankan peoples hospitality. If you get a chance go to the upcountry to see the tea plantations and water falls.
Come back and tell us what you thought of SL. It will turn out to be your best holiday1
I just wanted to say a big thank you for taking the time, effort and consideration to write and inform on your viewpoints.
Your valuable input is much appreciated.
Niki, about the time you posted this we were in Sri Lanka, in fact Beruwala . We arrived on their "VE" day and there was much merriment in the streets. How safe is it? well we are taking our two Grandchildren 7 & 9 back there this time in August 09. A nicer bunch of people you will not meet anywhere in the world and we felt safer there than in Many British towns in the evening. Quite a bit of begging but it dosen't get aggressive like in North Africa, food great and tuk tuk rides are a must.
Hi every One.. You know this argument confused me...
I'm planning for my honeymoon on October 2009, to be SeriLanka, and still not sure of my choice?!! would it be safe for a couple..? would be a good enough for honeymooners?! please help me..
I am planning to visit srilanka in sep 3rd week. Is it good time to travel ,interms of weather and season?.
I am going with my friends (5 member). Is it any good travel agents, take us to most of srilankan places in 7 days.
Thanks for your advice in advance.
This comment is for Emma. Yes, go to Sri Lanka for your honeymoon. You will enjoy it to the max. It is a beautiful place to be. It is safe, for couple or otherwise. If you get a chance go to Kandy, (Up country) where the weather too will be beautiful. and so much to see. And stuff are so cheap too. Great for shopping.
We´ve just returned from Sri Lanka (August 2009). We were in Colombo, the capital city and travelled to the cultural triangle.
We never felt threatened in any way travelling in Colombo. There is a heavy military presence so carry your ID with you and do not overstay your Visit Visa.
The Cultural triangle was very safe. Sigiriya (the Lion Rock Fortress) is a must see, and the nearby Sigiriya museum. Anuradhapura was a little disappointing as it was shabby. I guess 30 odd years of war has taken its toll.
The roads were in need of repair.
The road from Habaran to Sigiriya is brand new and very good. Pollonnaruwa was wonderful. Again, the road was not too bad.
We spent 3 wonderful days at Cinnamon Lodge (formerly the Lodge Habarana). Fantastic. Great place - superb food and very very friendly staff. the Sri Lankan people are wonderful. Do not be afraid, visit Sri Lanka. The people are not responsible for what the Government may or may not be doing.
Eat what the locals eat. If the curries are hot, ask them to do a milder version. Always drink boiled and filtered water. Avoid taking ice with your drinks. Ask for a mosquito net for your hotel room if one is not provided. Take mosquito repellent (tropical use) sprays and spray yourself when walking about.
if in Colombo, visit the Mt.Lavinia Hotel buffet. Fantastic food and affordable.
Arugam Bay is a must visit for surf lovers. They just finished the Surfing Championships there. Ask the British/Aussie and other world surfers who continued to visit Arugam Bay even during the war years.
Hikkaduwa Beach Festival was great fun.
If you are travelling with young kids, take them to Kaluaggala Water Park near Avissawella.
Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage is just out of this world.
Visit Sri Lanka. Advise I will give? Use your nut like you would when you are at home. Dont take unnecessary risks by walking down dark lanes or parading your riches. It is a poor country with poor people. So be cautious. When visiting Buddhist temples and religious sites, show respect. Dress appropriately.
The people of SriLanka need to be treated with respect..
Thanks for the feedback Pri! Did you get watch any of the cricket between Sri Lanka and New Zealand?
I'm so glad that common sense has prevailed. To advise (scare) people not to travel to Sri Lanka is irresponsible and is depriving people of a wonderful holiday, and depriving Sri Lankans of the much needed revenue from tourism. If you visit the British government Foreign Office website (
) you will see that they are still advising against travel to the North and East, where there is still much deprivation and poverty. Having been to SL many times, and traveling there again in November for a month, I can only speak very highly of the place and the people.
As James very clearly indicated, SRI LANKA is a safe place, and you will sure enjoy your stay.
I'm panning a three day official trip to colombo next week. But would hardly get an evening or two for doing things other than official. Can anyone please assist me on shopping and sightseeing that I could manage during this sapre time?
i want to say everybody srilanka is very beautiful country. and poor. it dosent matter. every country give good and bad site. no need hier to other people. just visit and collect your own expierience.and i wish everybody have a nice time in this paradise
Sri Lanka is relatively safe and there is no need to worry. It is not as bad as what the rest of the world thinks actually
For ALL,...........With regard to SRI LANKA travel
As I see most of the people are aware abt the tourist attractions which are given publicity by the travel agents and no other. As a Sri Lankan living in UK, I can safely say many of the tourists are not aware abt the real beauty of Sri Lanka. If have doubts abt what I say, Pls visit this web site:
and see for yourself.. That web site is done by some natural loving professionals.
Best way is to see the real beauty is by arranging the travel by yourself and have some local knowledge also. Anyway,...Sri Lanka is very safe and there is no unrest like the international media try to make. Don't worry abt the travel advisories which are given by the people who did not visit to Sri Lanka after the end of war and after the election.........All are safe in Sri Lanka.
edited April 2011
thank you, for every comments regarding sri lanka. you never ever visit country like sri lanka.... please come and take photo to your real life... we can help you friends...
There is no worry to travel to sri lanka. The war is almost over in sri lanka with LTTE.
May 2012 i am coming to work on a law internship in Negombo and will be staying for the duration of 4 week in ja ela. I am a 21 year old female and will be flying solo but will be staying in organised accomodation with a volunteering company.
what are peoples personal advise on this? i look forward to hearing from you.
edited May 2014
Credit card fraud is the most common type of crime affecting visitors. Use cash wherever possible and only use ATMs attached to banks or major hotels. Don’t lose sight of your credit card if you use it. Some travellers experience problems using their cards on arrival in Sri Lanka when their banks’ automated fraud protection system blocks transactions. It may be possible to avoid this by informing your bank in advance of your intended travel arrangements.
Sri Lanka is safe and Weligama is best beach. You can go without any tension. But care about ATM crime.
Hi guys, I was in Bentota last year. I didn't observe any stealing, but, unfortunately there are many frauds. It's frustrating, the residue left through the whole holiday. Moreover, I couldn't finish my coursework, so
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