Sri Lankan Dreams
Sri Lanka has always been on my list of places to visit, so I couldn’t wait to finally explore it.
It was my first time on a Sri Lankan Airlines flight, and I was pretty impressed with their hospitality and food. Let’s just say they left a smile on my face…and stomach! Their fish curry was one of the best I’ve had! It took about 4 and a half hours to get from Dubai to Colombo. We headed straight to the beaches in the south, which took another hour and a half by cab.
There, we were greeted with this incredible view…and the soundtrack that came with it.
One of the things I’d fallen in love with, prior to arriving in Sri Lanka, was their Dutch colonial architecture. So when it came to choosing a hotel, I was insistent on finding one that embraced this charm. That’s when we found Apa Villa – a stunning boutique property with just 3 villas and 6 rooms, a pool reaching out to the sea, hammocks scattered between coconut trees, and the sound of waves crashing against the beach.
Things were off to a good start.
The next morning, we were up early for sunrise yoga. Doing sun salutations at the break of dawn, with the rising sun and sea as our backdrop, I felt more present than I had in a long time.
At breakfast, we had a choice of Western or Sri Lankan…so we had both! The latter came with an array of plain or egg appam (crispy bowl-shaped pancakes made with rice flour), a side of dhal, curry, and spicy sambol. Along with it, came buffalo milk curd and sweet palm sugar treacle (another traditional Sri Lankan delicacy). Although absolutely delicious, I wouldn’t recommend it for the faint-stomach!
Service overall took a certain getting used to – a kind of non-intrusive understanding. Hotel staff would make their rounds to the front of the property every now and then, and we’d wait for them to appear to make an order or request. In other circumstances, we would’ve gotten really impatient, but here, it all seemed to complement the setting.
Soon, we found ourselves enjoying little conversations with the staff when we saw them, learning about their lives and culture through stories they would tell us.
In the late afternoons, we hopped into a tuk-tuk (the country’s main mode of transport) and explored Galle Fort and the neighbouring beaches.
We spent our days reading, basking in the sun, gliding through the pool, and gazing out to sea.
Apa Villa might not be a 5-star hotel with service at every turn, luxury toiletries, or tech gadgets adorning the room (there isn’t a TV or telephone in the room), but if you’re seeking tranquility in it’s purest form, it certainly precedes this rating with its stunning property and genuine charm.
Apa Villa, Thalpe
Tel: +94 91 2283320
78 Mile Post