When it comes to travelling with your machans*, a famous Sri Lankan slang used among the brotherhood in Sri Lanka, our country maybe small but offers a wide range of choices for some of the best bro trips to ancient cities, up country and low country tea plantations, wildlife sanctuaries, trekking trails and wonderful beaches.
Getting around is easy if you have vehicle where you share fuel costs or public transport works just as fine too.
So, Where do Machans go?
For Short Stays
If you guys have only two or three days, go someplace close by. Kitulgala a small town situated on the Kelani River and approximately 03 hour drive via Ginigathhena Road and 94 km away from Colombo. Kitulgala is a famous location of The Bridge on the River Kwai directed in 1957. The city is known for adventure sports – white water rafting, flat water rafting, waterfall abseiling and these can be booked in advance so you can directly hit the water and have a fun day (and a bonus full body workout!). Kitulgala also offers rain forest trekking across the Kelani river in wooden boat and walk into the rain forest of Kitulgala Forest Reserve. You can also do some bird watching here and of course do not forget to jump and slide into the natural rock pools and waterfalls. The area has seven natural pools. There are great places for accommodation around Kitulgala to fit your budget (and split evenly among groups) that makes it ideal for a machan trip.
For Long Stays
If the machan trip can be extended by a few days, head to the Eastern province in the country. Hint, head to Arugam Bay! One of the country’s biggest surfing destinations located 47 kilometres away is the Kumana National Park. You can relax by the beach, surf and have camp fire and BBQ at night (we heard Panama beach would be idyllic too). If you are adventurous enough, arrange an early morning expedition to Kudumbigala Ancient Monastery, Okanda Murugan Kovil, the crocodile canal and capture the perfect sunrise at top of the ancient ruined Pagoda. Few other historical landmarks in Arugam Bay include the Magul Maha Viharaya, Muhudu Maha Viharaya, Neelagiri Buddha statue and Tharulengala cave.
If fishing is something you guys enjoy and want to get away for the weekend, Mirissa would be ideal and is just a two hour drive away from Colombo. Deep sea fishing rides can be arranged in the morning or evening and you can challenge the guys to catching some blue or black Marlene or tuna to be barbecued later at the hotel as well.
What are your favourite picks to go with your machans?
*Machan is a word is used for close male friends and relations and has a similar meaning to “bro, mate and dude”