Community-Based Tourism Enables Sri Lankan Culinary Experience
Encouraging and enabling community-based tourism (CBT) is incredibly important to Khiri Travel and the picnic lunch illustrated here is the epitome of CBT. This young couple earns a living carrying vegetables in a nearby market. It’s a hard life that doesn’t pay much. However, Khiri Travel Sri Lanka is helping them enter the tourism value chain by hiring them to serve your travelers a delicious meal of local home cooking. This new employment opportunity is helping to supplement their income and at the same time travelers get to taste slow cooked Sri Lankan food. The food is served on lotus leaves with a cool drink poured from fresh coconuts.
This culinary experience is laid out on a comfortable woven mat in an incredible setting in this ancient sacred city. The UNESCO world heritage site of Anaradhapura, covered by jungle for 1000 years, was uncovered about 100 years ago. The picnic takes place nearby the colossal dagaba (Sinhalese for religious structure) called Jetavanaramaya, the largest brick structure of the pre-modern world. Constructed around 300 C.E. with over 93 million bricks, this shrine to Buddhism was part of an extensive complex that housed a monastery of 10,000 monks. During the meal, travelers are told stories and legends recovering the history of Anaradhapura, not to mention the ingenuity and engineering skills required for the construction of this immense dome of brick.
Sitting in the shadow of this ancient monument will take travelers back to an ancient kingdom and bygone era where the different sects of Buddhism vied for power in the first capital city of ancient Ceylon.
For more information about Sinhalese culinary traditions, Anaradhapura or other ancient Sri Lankan UNESCO sites at Polonnaruwa and Sigiriya, please leave your contact information in the yellow form below.
Photos by Van Deth Images