Yala National Park

Sri Lankan Traffic Jams

Wherever you live, chances are that you probably deal with traffic congestion on a weekly basis.  I HATE traffic jams!  For me, I’m not sure if there are many other things in life that are much worse.  I’ve been driving for 15 years, and still have to practice my yoga breathing and play relaxation music while sitting in a jam, to prevent my blood pressure from exploding!

When we were in Sri Lanka a couple of months ago, they definitely had their share traffic jams.  Although it was a different kind of congestion, one that I haven’t really experienced before. . . . . . . . ANIMALS on the road!  I was able to snap a few pics of what I call, “The Sri Lankan Traffic Jam!” I would say about 80% of the vehicles in Sri Lanka are Tuk-Tuks.  A majority of the roads around villages are just dirt roads, however they are starting to get some freeways around the country. IMG_5026 A lot of the traffic jams were caused by little fellas like this guy, a random cow just walking down the highway all by himself.  At least this guy was smart enough to stay on the shoulder! IMG_1933   Here is another guy just strolling around by himself causing some traffic issues.  He was super horny! IMG_1934 Sometimes there was just one cow in the road . . . . . IMG_1947 but sometimes there would be a ton of them! IMG_1948 You could honk and honk, but they weren’t going to move!  They got to determine what the speed limit was. IMG_5143         The cows also enjoyed walking along the country’s new freeway system!   IMG_1984 It wasn’t just cows that would create traffic jams in Sri Lanka.  Sometimes it was these big ass lizards!!! Including the tail, this one was like 4-5 feet long. IMG_5034     We also ran into some wild boars!  These guys were lucky enough to find some garbage on the side of the road for lunch. IMG_5146 Have I mentioned the MONKEYS yet?!?  This big guy ran across the road right in front of us. IMG_5157 We also ran into a lot of flooded roads, IMG_5139   and mud pits! IMG_1954 This guy tried going around a huge mud pit, but didn’t fair to well trying to cut through the grass. IMG_1955 Of course the biggest cause of a Sri Lankan Traffic Jam is when a huge elephant is walking down the middle of the road towards you!!!!!!!!!!!! IMG_1962

Tree House Tour

While we were in Sri Lanka I had a major mission, I wanted to see elephants!  After the guilty conscious I experienced with the camel riding in Dubai, I had made a pledge that I was going to be a more responsible traveler and do my homework in advance.  After reading much about the treatment of elephants around the world, I knew I didn’t not want to visit any animals that were in captivity.  Even if the facilities were claiming to be an elephant hospital or orphanage, I just didn’t want to take the chance on it being a cover up for a circus type situation.  I realized I needed to see elephants in the wild.  I wanted to go to a national park, and had my eyes set on Yala National Park.


When Mitch and I are in the planning stages of a trip, I am almost always the one coming up with ideas and things I want to do. Mitch is the “logistics guy” and enjoys figuring out the transportation, where we will stay, and other types of details.  This trip was no different.  I decided I wanted to see elephants at Yala National Park, and Mitch made it happen!

At first Mitch had his eyes set on “glamping” in the national park in semi-permanent tent structures.  However, the $900 per night price tag was enough to point us in another direction.  The end result: Beddegama Eco Park!  Mitch found this awesome little gem about 10 minutes outside the park for about $90 per night, where we slept in………a tree house!   It was so awesome we decided to make a video tour of it.

Our stay in the tree house was awesome. The location was the perfect jumping off point for our safari in Yala National Park.  We left with many memories that we will be taking with us like: listening to the peacocks scream at us while they sat in the near-by trees, surviving the thunderstorm that shook our entire bungalow the first night, taking an ice cold shower that came out of the side of a tree, and plenty of other little gems that are tucked away for us to take with us.

Moral of the story: let your husband plan all trip accommodations, because it will be awesome!