Monday, September 16, 2013

Beach Weddings in Sri Lanka

Weddings in Asia are known as a larger than life affair. Big venues flood of guests, sumptuous feasts, music and dances, are all factors contributing to the general image. However a certain pattern has set itself into conventional weddings. Guests come, meet, greet, eat, dance and return to their respective homes. This set pattern makes the whole ceremony boring. Why not make your guests feel pampered rather than just being invited?

Sri Lanka is a little island located on Indian Ocean and it has lots of very beautiful beach locations and its amazing place to arrange your dream wedding. It's a small miracle and Sri Lanka has different traditional and cultural wedding sets. Some of the popular tourist spots in Srilanka are hosting weddings big and small. Without any doubt, western and eastern shores are the favourite destination for domestic as well as international travellers. The best time however is between October - March, when the weather is cooler, when the country is blooming with various festival celebrations and when you can experience the true flavours of Srilanka.

While you plan to get married ashore, here are few of the points that you should consider:
The concept involves presence of few but special guests, perhaps all in sync with a unique dress code
Guests accommodation should be given due importance.
On time transfers, pick and drop of guests should not be delayed at any point of time
Meals should cater to both domestic and international guests.
Guests should be treated with regional music and food.
Beach wedding dress is different from any other wedding. None of your guests should feel out of the place.
Destination weddings also give the opportunity to explore the area. Therefore, the sightseeing should not clash with any of the ceremonies.
Each ceremony should be given a different theme to make the event more enjoyable & memorable
Your invitation, gifts and theme should have a local feel to introduce your guests to the destination.

Sri Lankan has an illuminated proud history and Sri Lanka has a unique and its own different traditional cultural system when we compare it with the other countries. In a Sri Lankan wedding it has few cultural symbols which show the uniqueness. Not only the cultural background as well as the other elements likes weather, people, animals, places and all.

Vismaya arrange all the related services to your wedding including beach location, accommodation, food & beverages, costumes, designs, photographers and honeymoon tours according to your request. All you have to do is contact us and let us know how you like to have your dream wedding. Then we will be able to arrange your dream wedding as the way you wish. Feel free to contact us at any time for further information about our services.

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(Photos courtesy of Maalu Maalu Resort & Spa in Pasikuda, Eastern Province, Sri Lanka)  

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The 10 Most Expensive Whiskies in the World

Grain, water, a wooden barrel and a little time. Whisky is a colourful character with an ever-changing spirit. The subject of literature, culture and folklore throughout the world, finicky booze-hounds have long paid a pretty penny for bottles of the most coveted casks. Pour a finger or two and hit the jump to drink in 10 bottles of whisky that truly break the bank.

Ladybank Single Malt: $4,700
Rounding out the top of the list is the Ladybank Distillery in Edinburgh, Scotland. Only 300 bottles of the rare Single Malt Scotch are bottled each Year, and to obtain one — you have to become a member of the club. The price of admission? — About $4,700 a year.
The Macallan 1947 Fine and Rare Collection: $6,800
This sherry cask Spey side scotch was bottled for Italy in 1962 before it was repackaged for Macallan’s Fine and Rare line of whiskies. The distillery used peat in its kilns because of the scarcity and high price of coal during WWII, the 1947 bottle, so this 15 year old has an earthy quality not present in modern Macallans.

Chivas Regal Royal Salute 50 year old: $10,000
A swill special enough to be packaged for the 1953 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, the Chivas Regal Royal Salute is a 50 year old Scotch with smoky anise and raisin flavours. Only 255 bottles were made, 10 of which were destined for America, where collectors eagerly poured out $10,000 each.

The Macallan 1939 40 year old Fine and Rare Collection: $10,125
“Peaty and powerful,” with overtones of sweet toffee and dried fruits, Macallan’s 1939 is a 40 year old first bottled in 1979. In 2002, it was added to the distillery’s Fine and Rare line and re-bottled. It can be found today for around $10,125.

Glenfarclas 1955 50 year old: $10,878
Wealthy tasters are warned to overlook this richly scented 50 year old Spey side at their own “peril.” Spicy and silky with a sweet start, this is the oldest batch ever bottled by the Glenfarclas distillery.

Dalmore 50 Year Old Decanter: $11,000
Only 60 crystal-cut bottles of this Highland single malt were produced. Filled in 1978, this dark sherry-aged Dalmore has a reputation for being intense and deeply flavoured and is considered by many aficionados among the best 50 year olds in the world.Macallan 55 Year old Lalique Crystal Decanter: $12,500
The eye-catching crystal bottle of Macallan’s 55 year old Lalique was based on a 1910 perfume bottle designed by Rene Lalique . Exotic, with hints of peat smoke, the taste is smooth with lingering citrus overtones.Glenfiddich 1937 Rare Collection:$20,000
Rare doesn’t describe it. Only one bottle of Glenfiddich’s 1937 Rare Collection was ever produced, and it just might be the oldest bottle of whisky in the world. It was snatched up at a 2006 auction for a bargain $20,000.Dalmore 62 Single Highland Malt Scotch: $58,000
Only a dozen bottles of Dalmore 62 single malt were corked in 1942. One night in 2005, a man bought a bottle for $58,000, and downed it with five of his buddies.
The Macallan 1926 Fine and Rare: $75,000
“Dry and concentrated” — what else would you expect from one of the most expensive whiskies in the world? Help yourself to a little licorice aftertaste. In 2005, a South Korean businessman paid $70,000 for a bottle of Macallan’s 1926, the finest and rarest of the Fine and Rare.
To ensure that these splendid spirits are only available to those who can truly appreciate them, the distillers have used quite a strictly exclusive marketing model with immense price tags.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tourism Progress and Peace in Former War Zones

Tourism has the potential to contribute to world peace, and through appropriate management, to address current realities such as globalization, migration, conflicts, prejudices and poverty. In former conflict areas the interrelation between peace, conflict resolution and tourism, the role of industry and the role of the individual are very essential, and tourism as a catalyst for change and development for this areas. In the former conflict areas there is more to peace than the absence of war and that there is more to tourism than economic interests will be considered by the individual investors, government and policymakers to boost the tourism as a key factor to building the last long peace.

A building which was damaged by War in Jaffna

Peace and harmony with yourself and others is the key to survival and through compassion and understanding, there are always possibilities to build and sustain a positive and permanent bridge between people. This is exactly what tourism and Peace has in common. When you tour a country and gain knowledge from what you experienced, there is the tendency that your understanding of others is upgraded to the positive or negative.  The more you know about the world the more we are closer to the achievement of Peace around the globe.

The more we integrate and communicate the better chances we have to understand each other. People who travel far and wide have a better understanding of the economic, political and cultural situation of others compared to somebody who has never travelled. Tourism can bring higher living standard in a country if well managed to serve the interest of the nation. The people who have access to the basic needs in advance societies can translate the meaning of Peace and it`s achievement in a different way compared to somebody from a poor economy without access to the basic needs.

A western tourist in Jaffna
Patterns of conflicts are very different form each other and each need its own approach of peace-keeping measures and conflict disengagement. The one thing that might certainly have a common positive effect on calming down sentiments after a conflict is tourism.However, some times the Local people might be shocked by the richness and holiday-behaviour that tourists bring along. Tourist, of course, will also be torn by the dramas they get to hear from local people. So, it’s very hard to implement the whole process. However, it can be done by a well-planned step-by-step implementation of tourism projects and depends on the size and kind of conflict that has just finished. And the financial power of local people and governments does play an important role as well.

Group of Western Tourists on the way to Nainatheevu
Post-war environments might not be seen fit and secure enough to encourage travellers to visit such a country or region, therefore: Local authorities must be encouraged to guarantee the safety and security that is needed for a touristic environment. The security forces in a former conflict zone are often say that tourism hinders their operations or that an area is not fit for tourism. However we always seen local civilians in former conflict zone are keen and happy to welcome tourists.

A tuk-tuk in front of a bullet ridden wall
The first businesses that will open in a post-conflict area are likely markets, restaurants, stalls at beautiful locations. Local authorities could, together with tour operators, encourage this kind of soft tourism first by directing day-trips into such a region. It is important that local people get the chance to participate in the business. Next might be information centres - tourists want to know about the conflict - but without being overrun by extreme views. Sensitive, yet open, ways of information are needed. Hotels and resorts will follow last. An investment into such projects needs long-term stability and sustained peace.There are success stories where tourism has encouraged the peace building process such as Sarajevo and Cambodia. We can see there are high potential for the success of tourism and peace in many other regions of the world. The efforts to start with such projects in former war-zones are very important and once a common understanding has been achieved, the roads are clear for bigger projects. May peace will prevail in the former conflict zones.

A travel portal with comprehensive information about Jaffna,which was a former war zone @

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Journey to Jaffna by Road (Through A9)

Jaffna has been out of bounds to foreign travellers for almost three decades, is fast becoming a must see destination for tourists interested in the history and culture of this peninsula. An ancient kingdom with many archaeological and natural wonders the arid plains, lagoons and desolated wilderness of the Jaffna peninsula present a vivid contrast to the lush scenery and busy towns of the south.

I started my journey from Capital Colombo to my native place Jaffna. This is my second trip to Jaffna after the war ended in May 2009; however this was different than the previous trip. This trip is purely a fact finding mission and filling the long term gap of my blogging. I have to mention here, that there are private Air conditioned busses going to Jaffna from Colombo (Wellawatta area) through Vavunia and Anuradhapura. The fare per person for a reserved seat being Rs 1,500/- and the journey takes around ten hours for this 396 Km trip.

The difference becomes apparent on the long journey by road northwards from Colombo to Jaffna. The first stretch along the A1 and A6 highways, then join the famous A9 at Dambulla. Gradually the tidy scenery of the south changes from fertile plains of paddy fields punctuated by peaks of bright green hills to tangled thickets of woodland. Both sides of the road have been cleared of bushes and occasionally can see scattered palmyrah trees in the distance. The wild undergrowth besides the road changes to stark dry plains where palmyrah palms proliferate.At the Elephant-Pass, where the road spans the lagoon and a sign, welcomes the visitors to Jaffna.

The final approach to Jaffna is slow due to the condition of the road. The road leads to vast open spaces and small hamlets, until buildings begin to block the view of the vegetation. There is a beautiful arch across the road signifying the entrance to the town. There are broad billboards advertising products in Tamil and you can see some solid colonial houses stand-alone amidst the ruins of others.

As road progress through the outskirts of Jaffna, activities of the people increases and the newly opened business are attracting customers. The A9 road, swings through crowded suburbs where guesthouses and small restaurants are flourishing in former residences. It runs into the town centre past Government offices, Court Complex, Town Hall (Verasingam Hall), Thuraiyappa Stadium, Jaffna Library, main bus stand and the ruins of Jaffna Fort with the view of the Lagoon. The causeway there stretches to Kayts enabling the road (B52) to continue to the jetty for ferries to Nagadeepa and the Nagapooshani Amman Temple.

Development in Jaffna during the past two years in a slow phase, however there is an air of courtesy as well of Commerce. The Jaffna Town quietens at the night but the stores are packed with fascinating mementoes, where huge Jaffna mangoes and unusual sweetmeats from the market or palm products like jolly shopping baskets made from palmyrah leaves. The sight of classic 1950’s motor cars parked in the towns taxi stand reminds the visitors that, although Jaffna has all the hustle and bustle of Colombo and remains a unique and historical city. The journey was well worth through Kandy Road (A9) and brought me my childhood memories. Hope the visitors going through A9 can see more than they expect.

A travel portal with comprehensive information about Jaffna @

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Refreshingly Sri Lanka

The Island of Sri Lanka is a small universe, it contains as many variations of culture, scenery, and climate as some countries a dozen times its size. Lovely beaches, beautiful landscapes, impressive ruins, a vibrant culture and charming people no wonder Sri Lanka is a small miracle. '' It may well be that each of Sri Lanka's attractions is surpassed somewhere on Earth, but I find it hard to believe that there is any country which scores so highly in all departments '' said the late Sir Arthur C.Clarke.

Since the end of the conflict in 2009, Sri Lanka has seen an increase in tourism figures and was named Best Value Destination 2010 by the Post Office Travel Money, Holiday Costs Barometer research and is set to be the top emerging luxury destination in 2011 according to the New York Times.

Sri Lanka Tourism has now launched 'Refreshingly Sri Lanka Visit Sri Lanka 2011' with 12 events spread across the year. The twelve different theme events have been conceptualised keeping in mind the 12 alphabets that make up the tagline "Wonder of Asia". These include beach activities, ICC matches, UNWTO Meeting for Asia, island wide New Year celebrations, 2600 year Buddha Jayanathi, 100 weddings, a health show, ‘Kandy Esala Perahera', ‘Minneriya Elephant Gathering', The World Spice Festival, tourism villages in nine provinces and Colombo Shopping Festivals.

This marks a significant moment in the history of tourism in the country. Sri Lanka is now on the world map as a unique, safe destination. The peace situation in the country that enabled it to achieve the 46% growth in tourist arrivals in 2010 and Sri Lanka hopes to exceed 700,000 tourist arrivals in year 2011. All promotional activities and events will be planned in the next couple of years with the goal of achieving the target of 2.5 million tourists.