Cooking classes, street food tours and lovely local restaurants - Sri Lanka is one of the best travel destinations for food lovers. Prime for a tasting tour, each region boasts its own unique style of cuisine and flavour combinations making it ideal for anyone who fancies a cross-country culinary feast. Read on to discover the best foodie experiences in Sri Lanka and our top tips for feasting your away around the country...
Crab Curry Cooking Class
Armed with a healthy appetite, head to Sri Lanka's east coast for a cooking lesson with a local chef. During the class, you'll learn how to prepare the iconic crab curry, an extravagant Sri Lankan meal that has its roots in the northern city of Jaffna. With all the ingredients provided - including freshly-caught crabs from the nearby lagoon - and the expert guidance of the chef, this is a great activity for all ages.
Kandy Food Trail
The cuisine in Kandy is as rich and diverse as its multi-cultural population. Set off on a Sri Lankan food trail to taste your way around the city and indulge in some of its firm food favourites. During this excursion, you'll get the chance to tuck into vegan dishes which are staples of the city's Sinhalese community, taste the hot pancake-like dosa and vadei (spicy lentil cakes) - signatures of Tamil households - and feast on a range of street food samples to experience the island's delectable flavours.
Tea, Lunch and Waterfalls
Enjoy a tasty lunch with a side of hiking, swimming and tea tasting on a wonderful day out in the Uva Highlands - one of the best tea growing regions in the country. Begin you day with a trek to a stunning waterfall where you enjoy a cooling dip in a secret swimming spot and then visit a local farm where tea, coffee, cinnamon and lemongrass is grown. In the afternoon, enjoy a tea tasting session and lovely late-afternoon lunch accompanied by a local guide who will tell you about how their signature hand-made teas are produced.
Boats, Bikes and Bites in Galle
Combine good food with a spot of exploring by boat and bike for another great day out. Set off in the morning for a boat journey along the river banks of rural Galle on the country's southwest coast. Drift past mangroves and villages that sit on the water's edge while looking out for water monitors - a large lizard native to southeast Asia - myriad bird species and beautiful blue water lilies - Sri Lanka's national flower. Back on dry land, hop on a bike for the next part of your adventure. Depending on how energetic you are feeling you can choose the length of your route, which will take you through rice paddies and local villages, before ending up at a traditional mud hut for the foodie portion of your day. Here, you can enjoy some refreshing coconut water straight from the fruit, learn how traditional Sri Lankan hoppers (bowl-shaped pancakes) are made, and then have a go at creating them yourself (and sampling the results afterwards).
A Taste of the East
Take part in a hands-on cooking class to learn how to cook quintessential Biryani (a flavourful one-pot meal) with descendants of the Muslim settlers. Galle was once a trading hub for Arab merchants and this is one of the many dishes brought with them and served for Muslim family celebrations and festivities. The lesson takes place in your host's kitchen and after crafting the meal, you can sit down and eat together at their family table.
Ceylonese Hosted Dinner
What better way to round off a foodie tour of Sri Lanka than with an indulgent eight-course degustation menu. Take a seat for this culinary feast and learn more about old Ceylon and its cuisine as you dine with your passionate curator. All the courses hail from different parts of the island, making this a wonderful way to taste your way around the country in just a few hours of eating.
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