The advantages of high-season travel are widely known. Less so when it comes to the lower season for most destinations. You’ll have to browse the most popular travel guides out there, but you’ll quickly realize that even the best of them hardly provide substantial insider tips on off-season holidaying. It takes continuous presence and exploration of a destination to develop in-depth understanding of its climate cycles, its geographic advantages and shortcomings, and all the behavioral traits of the locals in connection with the seasons. Charming in its own way, the low-season travel, or as the locals prefer to call it “slow season”, hides unmined gems for both experienced and novice adventure travelers. We couldn’t agree more, “slow season” travel is not only healthier for the planet, but holds infinite rewards for the patient traveler.
Year-round travel for endless exploration
There is no such thing as off-season in Sri Lanka. The island is a pearl-shaped volcanic formation sitting slightly north of the equator in the sapphire-blue waters of the Indian Ocean. Sri Lanka has two distinct seasons with two mini-monsoons, the drier seasons befalling the months of December through April. But, if you’re counting on the peak-season being without a raindrop, you’d be hard-pressed to find it. Sri Lanka is a tropical island, which means that at any given moment it is drizzling somewhere in the country. In fact, the rain is an essential part of the daily climate cycles that move gracefully across the island’s topography in the course of a day.
The “slower” seasons pick up from May to July, and then again from September through November. There is a mini peak-season in August, when the island comes alive in a festive celebration of the annual Esala Perahera, a feast of colors, fireworks and relics being paraded by elaborately decorated performers and elephants. But, the more important aspect of the changing seasons is that the swimmable coastline shifts from the South-Western shores to the North-Eastern one, bringing top-rated waves and giant whales to the Eastern shores of Trincomalee, Passikuda and Arugam Bay. So if you’re looking for a perfect Summer break, look no further, Sri Lanka has the best summer adventure ready for your annual vacation.
If you’re after flexibility and increased comfort on your vacation, the “slow” season presents its unparalleled advantages in hotel availability & last-minute changes on your reservations. Hey, you might even get the occasional bump-up in room category for the price of a “sweet” deal on standard offerings. Low season presents a much wider range of choice with sought-after hotels that may be overbooked 3 to 6 months in advance during the higher-seasons.
Another advantage is the courteous service which tends to come with way more attention during the slower months. The hotel staff is by far less-stressed and greatly appreciates the continued patronage from the low-season guests toward their offerings. The same goes for your local guides, who will take their time to show & tell their hidden spots, as opposed to rushing through the itinerary in order to get to their next reservation. But, keep in mind that “slower” season also means a prime time for hotel renovations & reduced amenities such as pool & restaurant services. You’ll want to work with a seasoned (no pun intended) travel advisor to determine the best choice of hotels and reconfirm their ongoing services.
increased hotel availability
sweet deals on accommodation
patient & friendly staff
prime time for renovations
reduced restaurant services
The monsoon beauty is in the eye of the beholder
Imagine yourself standing in awe of a majestic world heritage site and being the only person there to take it all in. Many incredible tourist attractions are practically deserted during the rainy seasons. The ticket lines are non-existent, the mass-tourist crowds are all but vanished, and the wait to see the “Mona Lisa”, in this case the Lion Rock, is over. In truth, when it comes to weather, it practically never rains the entire day. So, you’re sure to find plenty of time to do the Sigiriya climb, to hike the tea trail, or to safari in the national park (btw, surrounded by way less other jeeps, and way more actual wildlife).
But wait, there’s more. The lush emerald-green environment comes alive with every rain drop, the birds chirp more happily and the gentle giants migrate to select spots where you can witness them in large gatherings. If you’re lucky enough to be traveling in Sri Lanka during the monsoon season, you are sure to witness a rare beauty of an island revived. Keeping in mind that you’ll definitely need to carry a raincoat everywhere you go for that sudden burst of torrential downpour, you’ll be in good hands with some proper advice on best locales for all your activities and visits.
As travel advisors, we’d like to be able to rely on the promise of non-monsoon hassle-free travel advertised in so many travel guides. Unfortunately, with today’s challenging climate changes we all find ourselves in an unprecedented global predicament. The role of a destination expert has never been more essential in helping you plan an itinerary that avoids the pitfalls of monsoon challenges by selecting a seamless route that makes for best all-season travel.
non-existent ticket lines
vanished mass-tourist crowds
climate change global challenges
Over-tourism is real, slow it down!
If climate change isn’t enough, over-tourism has been adding its impact on over-tired “exotic” destinations that receive innumerable visitors over the peak-season months. The picture-perfect “Tropicana” advert leaves out a gruesome reality of over-crowded beaches, over-piled waste that has no recycling alternatives on an island, and over-saturated attractions that are otherwise meant to inspire respect toward a centuries-old cultural legacy. It also drives the local population to hype up its sensationalized identity of the cultural “other,” instead of cultivating the authentic side of local life that is often far from being “glamorous”.
Responsible travel stands for sustainable practices that encourage the locals to reinvest in their authentic identities. It encourages the locals to see the foreign visitors as interested parties in a bridged cultural exchange and to strengthen inter-cultural bonds that are rooted in a shared human experience. It brings humanity back into the picture, a picture that looks a lot more like real life. Slower travel also allows for everyone to tap into the deeper aspects of local culture, so it can be appreciated in all its beauty and significance. If you pride yourself on being a responsible traveler then you cannot avoid the fact that low-season travel is a better way to redistribute tourism all over the world.
reduced pressure on the locals
authentic cross-cultural exchanges
there are no contraindications for responsible tourism !
Slow season is the only season for “deeper” travel
If you’re one of those travelers who enjoys taking time to experience a destination in-depth, then you’ll be one of the lucky recipients of its true cultural riches. The “slow season” presents exceptional opportunities for a deeper dive into the hidden aspects of a people’s safe-guarded treasure. In Sri Lanka, the millenia-strong practice of authentic Buddhist meditation has produced a culture that is deeply steeped in mindful coexistence with nature. At its core, the “middle-path” philosophy has shaped a community that shares inclusive principles of loving kindness and compassionate giving.
Pilgrimage to hallowed sites is still a wide practice among the locals who regularly undergo sacred initiations into the depths of spiritual cultivation. All of this coupled with a slower-paced discovery makes it for an ideal environment to embark on a spiritually-charged retreat in Sri Lanka. Our 12-day Buddhist pilgrimage & meditation retreat does exactly that by bringing you into a deep encounter with the island’s long-bestowed illuminating treasure. This southern gem of the Indian Ocean remains the stronghold bastion for humanity’s ultimate enlightenment.
meditation alters your perceptions and transforms challenges into opportunities for growth and self-realization
So, if you are seeking a quality travel experience you’ll be wise to consider a “slower”-paced itinerary during the lower seasons. The savvy travelers know that “off-season” presents a great deal of advantages over the over-crowded high-seasons. It takes a bit of practice and some well-pointed advice to get it right, but once you’ve tasted the sweet deal of “slow season” travel, you’ll be hooked for the rest of your traveling life!
Wellness travel is part and parcel of transformational holidays. But, feeling well on your vacation is just as important as considering the environmental wellness of your destination. At Sriseeker, we focus on crafting eco-wellness travel that aims at combining eco-friendly tourism practices with wellness trips that are rooted in authentic culture and tailor-made well-being. Our wellness journeys start where your transformation begins.
"Ayubowan" - may you live a long life!
Sri Lanka's ageless natural beauty and ancient cultural practices create an environment that is abundant in potent healing properties. The lush landscapes mesmerize, the devotional culture inspires, and the friendly local people open their hearts with their beautiful smiles. But, the warm hospitality of the locals is just as much a result of their welcoming island culture, as it is a direct manifestation of many centuries of environmentally-conscious living with the tropical climate. An emerging top wellness destination, Sri Lanka reveals its secrets of longevity to mindful travelers that seek a journey beyond the ordinary tourist routes.
Traditional eco-wellness that rejuvenates the soul
Step into a traditional village offering an eco-friendly retreat based on the ancient healing therapies of Ayurveda. The wise sages knew that nature possesses infinite possibilities for self-healing. Ayurveda is a traditional holistic science based on the principles that all living beings are governed by the same set of natural forces. Learning to maintain a healthy balance of your doshas is the key to leading a happy life. The Sriseeker traveling retreat offers unique possibilities to acquire fundamental Ayurveda & Yoga skills that will last you a lifetime.
Meditation is the "environmental wellness" of your mind
Mental well-being is a much sought-after luxury in our fast-paced reality. Learning to slow down our minds' activity is instrumental in establishing healthy boundaries and building meaningful relationships. Sri Lanka is home to one of the oldest forms of Buddhism practiced anywhere in the world. Having retained the original Dharma throughout the centuries, the sacred island is the focal point of our Buddhist Pilgrimage retreats. Studying with a living master is a rare opportunity to experience the transformational power of meditation. A meditative mind leads to compassion toward all living beings and creates the possibility of finding peace and refuge in the benevolent philosophy of loving kindness.
Affordable wellness retreats among friends
If wellness and affordability are important to you during your travels, you may want to consider joining a custom-designed wellness trip that brings together all the right components for a journey well-travelled. At Sriseeker, our signature traveling retreats are designed to awaken a deeper connection with the natural surroundings. These small group itineraries are packed with exciting discoveries and introspective experiences. The overall journey is well-balanced between active days and relaxation days allowing our wellness experts to meet each participants’ needs for self-reflection. We limit space to those individuals who seek awareness and self-cultivation within a collective of kind-hearted individuals. It is also a great opportunity to experience a lighter version of community living. You may find yourself enjoying a shared transformational experience among friends that doesn't take a fortune to consider.
Eco-wellness hotels that are inspired by nature
Last by not least your accommodations will have a lot to do with your well-being. Whether this is your first solo wellness journey, or you are a savvy eco-tourism enthusiast, expert guidance in selecting your stays will determine the underlying quality of your travel experience. Leave it to your local travel specialist to point out the lesser-known 'gems' offering exceptional service, proximity to select attractions and vetted "green" practices of your chosen lodging. With centuries of traditional eco-friendly practices, Sri Lanka is a rare destination lending itself naturally to an environmentally inspired wellness travel itinerary.
If you are anything like us, you're probably seeking an authentic travel experience that is affordable, and takes the impact on the environment into the overall consideration of greater global wellness. If nature is central to your personal well-being, then an eco-friendly wellness retreat in Sri Lanka is the perfect choice for your next eco-conscious holiday. Sriseeker specializes in curating unique travel experiences in Sri Lanka that lead you to establish a deeper connection to its nature, its people and their sacred island.
The time is now to take that transformational travel journey that you have been planning for so long. Step into the unknown, discover the most exciting parts of yourself, while meeting new cultures, reaching new horizons and finding the joy of solo travel. It's all about you and "recharging your batteries," so you can reconnect to your happiness and inner peace.
A solo journey begins
It's an exciting adventure, not without its share of worries - a solo trip is the ultimate venture into the unknown. "Did I make the correct flight reservations, did I book the appropriate hotels, will I enjoy the activities without anyone to share the experience with?" All of these are valid questions when making the brave decision to visit a new place all by yourself. But, the worries and nervousness are quickly subdued when you step off the airplane, and the warm tropical air embraces you with its delicious aromas of spices, jasmine and araliya flowers. Sri Lanka has a magical quality of a gentle cocoon that transforms most visitors into lifetime solo travel enthusiasts.
Initiation into the culture of a place
There is nothing like immersing yourself fully into the culture of a new place. Traveling solo affords the opportunity to explore each destination with an approach focused on your interests. Are you a textile fanatic, or a history buff? Or maybe you are a nature enthusiast that doesn't like the crowds and prefers visits during early mornings or late evenings, when most tourists are busy standing on the buffet line. The beauty of solo travel is in its unprecedented flexibility to adapt to your individual needs. It's your time and that is always the best time!
Challenging yourself, reaching for new horizons
Visiting a new place is an opportunity to do something that you have never done before. The break with the daily routine back home opens up new horizons for fresh experiences. Whether it is challenging yourself on a rigorous mountain hike, or encountering people that do not speak your language, it requires reaching deep inside yourself to find ways to keep it going. You may surprise yourself by discovering a new set of abilities, or a blossoming of skills, that you thought were never possible for you. It is inevitable that visiting a new destination is bound to expose you to ways that are stimulating and satisfying by interacting with your new surroundings.
Experiencing a deep connection with yourself
Facing a set of new challenges with a positive intention is a direct route to reconnecting with yourself. Travel presents a structured challenge where a set of factors are always left to spontaneous decision making. Having to make these decisions on your own is the ultimate test in self-reliance. In Sri Lanka, nature has a way of presenting travelers with unexpected blessings. The lush vibrant environment stimulates the eye and inspires a deeper connection with your own human nature. Time slows down, days get longer, and you start to feel like you've been on the island forever. This is the transformative power of this sacred island that has attracted so many intrepid visitors over the ages.
New experiences are always outside your comfort zone
Jumping on an airplane to a new destination presents a wonderful occasion to leave your comfort zone behind. When done in the safety of a well-designed travel itinerary, with a qualified guide, you can forge ahead with confidence on your new solo adventure. Getting the best advise on your program selections is crucial in securing a pleasant experience that affords the joy of discovery and avoids the pitfalls of tourist traps. Our experienced travel advisor specializes in solo travel, has insider destination knowledge, and will suggest a select lineup of activities and visits that will take in account your individual interests and solo travel aspirations. After all, the comfort zone is an area that needs constant revision and some well-designed expansion.
Taking time to rest and recharge
It wouldn't be a trip of a lifetime if it didn't account for some rest and relaxation. Taking time to reflect and revisit your solo travel experiences is just as important as having them. Schedule in some spa treatments or plan for a longer stay on the coast for a good dose of "vitamin sea." Sri Lanka is one of the top ranking wellness destinations and lends itself naturally to spending quality "me-time" surrounded by the serene beauty of the island. There is a unique sublime quality to experiencing solitude that brings you into ultimate alignment with your inner compass. A solo trip is as much about experiencing new horizons as it is about recharging your well-being.
Group travel can feel a lot like a solo trip
It may seem paradoxical, but traveling solo doesn't always have to equal traveling alone. Joining a custom-designed group tour that takes a particular approach to visiting a destination can be just as exhilarating. You may find yourself surrounded by a number of like-minded individuals taking interest in the same set of activities, on a similar trajectory of finding companionship in unique travel experiences. Although you may be setting out on a solo journey of self-discovery, you'll often find that you are rarely alone during your travels. You are constantly meeting people, making conversation with your guide, taking a photo with a local vendor - until you retrieve into the privacy of your room where you can make sense of your new encounters. A quality group travel experience can be just as satisfying to a solo adventurer, not to mention that it can be a lot lighter on your expenses as well.
Transformational retreats that heal
Ultimately, solo travel is about seeking transformation from your new surroundings. Sriseeker organizes unique traveling retreats that are designed to give you the tools to bring peace back into your life. Our holistic approach to itinerary design incorporates time for self-cultivation while creating immersive cultural experiences that stimulate the soul. In Sri Lanka, we are exceptionally lucky to offer the Ayurveda Yoga Retreat that introduces a small group of travelers to the healing powers of traditional medicines and a transformational training in specialized massage techniques. Conducted by leading specialists in body-mind-spirit well-being, our Buddhist Meditation Pilgrimage is a rare opportunity to study Vipassana meditation with a living master, while visiting places of power and sacred devotion. The aim of a transformational retreat is not merely to explore new practices, but to make lasting improvements that can be thoroughly integrated into our existing realities back home. With proper guidance from the Sriseeker wellness experts, this transformational healing is achieved through a multi-step process that includes a signature pre- and post-retreat consultation program.
How about starting to plan your ultimate transformational solo trip with Sriseeker experts? The planning stages can be just as exciting as the actual journey. So, let's not waste any time and design a journey that is meant to bring greater meaning and fulfilment to your life.
Family holidays are all about having fun and sharing stress-free quality time with the loved ones. But, we rarely get to enjoy the precious time away from home without bringing some regular family problems along the way. Striking the right balance between adventure and relaxation might be the best solution for your next family vacation. And, your Sriseeker travel specialist just might have some helpful tips on how to achieve it!
1. Choosing a destination that will inspire everyone
Choosing a stress-free destination is synonymous with a stress-free holiday. Sri Lanka is blessed with a wide range of landscapes, climates and localities. From the high-ranging mountains and waterfalls, through the lush rainforests, down to the friendly local countryside, all the way to the shimmering golden beaches - there is enough natural variety to satisfy the most avid traveler. This also means that everyone in the family will get to experience at least one truly inspiring destination while on holiday. The easy tropical weather may not be for everyone, but the cooler tea plantations may be just the right "cup of Ceylon tea". The cultural riches of the Golden Triangle and the extensive amount of bio-diversity that you'll encounter will make for a memorable family journey with lots of tales to recount back home.
2. Designing flexible itineraries for all ages
You might want to pack a lot in your family adventure in Asia, but when it comes to "keeping up with the babies or the boomers," not everyone in the family might share your enthusiasm. It is always wise to keep your itinerary open and to plan for "slower" days when everyone can catch up. Fewer stops with more days in between might be the ideal scenario to take in the local history as well as account for unexpected changes in the weather. It also helps with finding time to do laundry and avoid having to pack your bags every other day, which can be a real downside of tedious family packing. Ask your trip specialist to recommend the locations best designed for longer stays, so you can take real advantage of each stop. And remember, disconnect your devices to reduce unnecessary "screen-time" - quality family time is all about making time first-and-foremost for the family.
3. Requesting family-friendly accommodations that won't break the bank
A family villa on the beach sounds like your type of family vacation? Why not make it a regular accommodation feature throughout your trip? You can experience a variety of family-friendly stays from high-end hotels featuring large family suites, to budget-conscious homestays with a charming local family that will be the highlight of your entire adventure. One key ingredient to keep in mind is the availability of a swimming pool - a big lifesaver for those rambunctious 3-year-olds. Sri Lankans are very family-oriented and you can find a large selection of affordable family accommodations throughout the island. But, if you want to go for that premium experience - a kid's club or a babysitter with a five-star resort - Sri Lanka has many tantalizing stress-free family solutions to offer. Simply make your request for family-friendly accommodations and mention your kids' ages to get the best out of each stay.
4. Setting aside one-on-one time
Whether it is booking a spa session for your over-worked mommy, or getting your dad surfing lessons with a pro - make sure that you plan for "alone" time for every adult family member on the trip. There is nothing like having an amazing adventure all-to-yourself, while sill being able to share the excitement with the rest of the family. It also gives you the much-needed downtime away from family dynamics, and factors in important moments for self-reflection. If you are a single parent juggling a demanding career with family obligations back home, setting aside one-on-one time with each child can be instrumental in improving communication and overall child-parent relationships. You might even want to consider traveling with asolo-child, it is amazing how kids open up when they step outside the usual sibling dynamics. Overall, consider your family holidays a time for reconnecting and renewing important bonds, and don't be afraid to step outside your family's comfort zone.
5. A group activity to remember
A shared memorable family activity will be the highlight of your trip that everyone will remember for years to come. Sri Lanka is an ideal destination for fun-packed family-friendly excursions featuring treks in the rainforest, dolphin and whale watching, white water rafting, hot air balloon flights and lots more. But, the most iconic of them is the famed elephant safari featuring large herds of pachyderms grazing on tall grasses in one of many national parks. Watch the babies playfully imitate the adult elephants and spot many more other wildlife species in the distance. Observing wild animals in their natural habitat is a rare educational adventure for every member of the family, no matter how old or young. Ask Sriseeker for recommendations on environmentally friendly options to visit a protected wild zone in Sri Lanka.
Are you ready for an exciting family adventure that brings you a peace of mind and doesn't cash our all your savings? With Sriseeker you'll experience a hassle-free holiday that takes in account all your family's needs for a comfortable and memorable vacation. We'll make sure to plan a few surprises along the way, but only of a good kind!
Buddhist ritual practice in Sri Lanka is a beautiful tapestry of devotional chants, veneration of nature and sacred spaces meant to awaken the body and spirit to a higher purpose. Like with so many ancient religious practices, some areas of local customs can remain inaccessible to a novice spiritual traveler. Unraveling the threads of symbolic ritual significance on a picturesque temple visit in Sri Lanka offers an insightful glimpse into a sacred Buddhist culture that has retained its spiritual allure throughout the millennia.
Calling forth a spiritual vibration
The drumroll summons the devotees to attend the evening "puja" offering ceremony on a special auspicious full moon "Poya" day. It is customary in Sri Lanka, to spend this day at the temple observing religious principles of "rightful speech", "rightful thought" and "rightful action." The drumming can be heard well outside the complex of the temple, where bustling city life still offers the possibility to purchase flowers, incense and oil-lamp offerings from the local vendors. We step into the temple grounds -- surrounded by a sea of "white-clad" devotees, we remove our shoes and we find ourselves immersed into the serenity of a space resounding only with the rhythmic calls of the drum. We feel an instant connection with the vibration, as though something very familiar and very primal has been awakened deep inside our bodies, a visceral memory that penetrates all that is connected. We are reminded that it is in our presence that we offer a container for the sacred, the temple and our body merging into one space to hold the eternal wisdom.
Watering the seed of devotion
All life begins with a seed, a sapling, an offspring. Buddhism in Sri Lanka centers around the veneration of nature as a reminder of our own humble beginnings. Every temple offers refuge to a magnificent Bodhi tree, a descendant of the original ficus religiosa in North India, where the Buddha gained ultimate insight into the nature of things. We make seven circumambulations around the holy tree, pausing to water its roots from a clay pot while reciting the "Bodhi tree puja". Just as the tree has once offered refuge to the Buddha himself, steadily positioned under its shade in his relentless pursuit to understand the root cause of human suffering, we join in our efforts to preserve all future life on earth. A Buddhist pilgrimage in Sri Lanka offers visits to many sites centered around the same lineage of the sacred bo-tree family. Circling around the mighty trunk we remember that all life is cyclical and we are just one particle in the vast network of an interconnected existence.
Beyond the smoke and the mirrors
The senses have a way of placing us here and now. The aromatic smoke of burning incense fills up the space around us, creating an instant awareness of our multi-dimensional existence. Our sense of smell awakened by the beauty of our natural environment, our sense of sight fixated on the "slithering" upward-moving smoke -- there is a mystical quality to our senses working together to create this illusion of self. Like a hall of mirrors, the brightly-lit rows of dozens of oil-lamp flames flicker in our consciousness, purifying us of delusion, and offering us a reflection back onto our reality. What is revealed is only in the eye of the beholder!