A rare moment of ‘shocking beauty’ for Gourmet Traveller as the sun sets behind Adam’s Peak in Sri Lanka.


A moment of “shocking beauty” as the sun is setting behind Adam’s Peak was a highlight of Gourmet Traveller writer Ruth Ritchie’s recent visit to Sri Lanka.

She was hiking above Norwood Tea Estate in the Hill Country “a slow-motion glimpse into a time-warp idyll. Walking up and up, listening to our guide share his botanical knowledge, the history of these hills, is dreamy.”

“And if this is our first sunset in Sri Lanka, the bar has been set very high. This is not going to be India-lite, but something completely different.”


Ruth took full advantage of our Cinnamon Air amphibious service, “a time-poor traveller’s best friend, whose small fleet of seaplanes connects beauty spots with scheduled and charter flights”.

She used it again to fly to Koggala Lake near Galle on the south coast for her stay at Tri Lanka, “the quixotic experiment of two lion-hearted non-hoteliers, Lara Baumann and Rob Drummond”.

“They have actually done the thing most of us talk about after 20 years of hard labour and a few wines: they bought a chunk of land on the south coast of Sri Lanka and have built an architecturally interesting retreat with Ayurvedic-inspired food, yoga classes and massages.”


“Yoga isn’t offered just to tick a millennial luxury travel box – Baumann is a yoga teacher who just happens to run a hotel. The practitioners look like hipster guests passing through. Not standard five-star staff, but cool flaky folk who fit into this quirky scene.

“They’ve imported Neil Wager – a British chef with stints at the remote luxe lodges of Nihiwatu on the Indonesian island of Sumba … to crack a menu that applauds local produce, tradition and Ayurvedic wellness.”

Finally, she asks, why Sri Lanka? “Go for the time travel, the food, the tea leaves breaking against your thighs as you walk up and up, back to something old and lost.”

Read more here.

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