Is a loved one moving to this island or have you always fancied living on its sandy shores? Take a look at these fun facts about Sri Lanka to see how well your local knowledge fares!
1. Sri Lanka once went by a different name.
Formerly known as Ceylon, Sri Lanka is a small island off the south coast of India in the Indian Ocean.
2. It is well-surrounded.
Its nearest neighbours are India to the north, Bangladesh and Myanmar (Burma) to the northeast, Thailand to the east, Malaysia, Sumatra and Java to the southeast and Maldives to the southwest.
3. How do you find Sri Lanka with a compass?
Do you miss watching the blue whales or drinking the beautiful locally grown tea? Head for the coordinates of 7.0000° N, 81.0000° E to find yourself back in Sri Lanka.
4. Much of Sri Lanka is easily walkable.
The terrain here is mostly low, flat-to-rolling plain with mountains in the centre of the island.
5. It’s a fairly small country.
The total land area of Sri Lanka is 25,299 square miles (65,525 square kilometres) – that’s slightly smaller than Scotland.
6. However, its population is dense!
Sri Lanka’s population was 21.67 million in 2018 – that’s around four times the population of Scotland!
7. What’s the capital of Sri Lanka?
Sri Lanka has two capital cities; Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte and Colombo. SJK is the legislative capital and a suburb of the commercial capital, Colombo. Colombo covers an area of 14.4 square miles (37.3 square kilometres) and had a population of 707,000 in 2015.
8. Ever been caught in a monsoon?
Sri Lankans enjoy a tropical monsoon climate. The northeast of the country has a monsoon season from December to March, whilst the southwest has a monsoon season from June to October. Despite this, there is often lovely weather throughout the country all year round, with an average temperature of 27°C!
9. What do people speak in Sri Lanka?
The official languages of Sri Lanka are Sinhala and Tamil. English is also spoken here.
10. Get the net set up!
Although cricket is very popular in Sri Lanka, Volleyball is actually the national sport!
11. Sri Lanka’s name change comes as of its split from the British.
Sri Lanka gained independence from the British Empire in 1948 and became part of the British Commonwealth. Sri Lanka left the British Commonwealth in 1972, at which point the name was changed from Ceylon to Sri Lanka.
12. Changing your money up?
Sri Lanka Rupee the official currency here.
13. Sri Lankans make a great cuppa.
Did you know, Sri Lanka is one of the largest tea exporters in the world?
14. It’s a massive cinnamon exporter.
Cinnamon was first discovered in Sri Lanka around 2,800BC – Sri Lanka now produces around 80-90% of the worlds cinnamon!
15. You’ll likely live long and healthily here.
The average life span here is 76.81 years (2018).
16. Sri Lanka grows and produces all kinds of things.
Sri Lanka grows rice, coconuts, grains, sugarcane and pulses; it also rears cattle and produces milk.
Its industry consists of tea, coconuts, rubber processing, agricultural commodities, clothing and cement.
Sri Lanka also exports textiles, apparel, diamonds, tea, coconut products and petroleum products.
FAQs about Sri Lanka
Is Sri Lanka safe for tourists?
While it’s advisable you take great care while traveling anywhere new, Sri Lanka’s tourist scene is thriving, and it’s considered pretty safe!
Can you drink alcohol in Sri Lanka?
Yes - providing it’s not on a religious holiday, and you are not doing so in public.
Is Sri Lanka a religious nation?
Yes, the vast majority of people follow Buddhism here, with small communities of Hindus, Sunni Muslims and Roman Catholics..
Do you know any fun facts about Sri Lanka? Share them in the comments below!