Thrillist Travel: Sri Lanka is one of those places that always got “honorable mention” on my travel bucket list, behind front-runners like Thailand, Botswana, or Montana’s Glacier National Park. But I was so, so wrong. Dig a little deeper and you’ll see why this South Asian island is worth bumping up—if not topping—the list.

It’s full of breathtaking beaches, tea plantations, and wildlife — and happens to be one of the more culturally, architecturally, and spiritually enhanced countries on planet Earth. It’s essentially a real-life version of The Lion King, except only the parts the light touches (none of that dark and dodgy hyena land).

Don’t believe me? Take a gander at these stunning examples, and you’ll buy a plane ticket faster than you can belt out “Naaaants een-vwen-yaaaaaaa ma-ba-gee-chi-ba-va” (or however the hell that song starts).

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Top 5 things to do in Sri Lanka

Niki In The City: Seeing Sri Lanka after 15 years was something I planned for awhile. It is where my parents emigrated from to make a better life for me over 30 years ago.

It is a beautiful country that has so much to offer its’ visitors. I convinced my parents to come along with me, and away we went on a real adventure. Check out my top 5 list now!

Going to Sri Lanka after Thailand and Cambodia was a must in my book based on proximity alone. Here’s a round up of my top 5 things to do when visiting Sri Lanka!

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Sri Lanka is set to be your new favourite getaway

SportLuxe: Sri Lanka is one of those dream destinations. It’s fairly untouched and unknown to the pitfalls of excessive tourism. Tropical, wild and blissfully peaceful, the teardrop-shaped island is located just south of India.

It’s the ultimate little-known haven for yogis and surfers alike who (sneakily) flock to the island for some affordable waves and sun salutations. And if you like curry, then you’re in luck.

Since we like to let you in on all the wellness secrets, we’ve got the scoop on the new resort to book a trip to now—before the crowd catches on.

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20 photos that will make you pack your bags and go to Sri Lanka

Adventure In You: A country full of rich culture, beautiful scenery, and smiling locals, Sri Lanka might just be that undiscovered slice of paradise you’re looking for. It’s your new favorite country in Asia, you just don’t know it yet.

Need more encouragement? Take a look at our top 20 photos that will make you pack your bags and go to Sri Lanka for natural beauty from stunning mountains to epic treks:

Sigiriya Lion Rock fortress; female tea pickers in Plantage; scenic train rides; World Heritage Site Sigiriya or Lion Rock; view from Adam’s peak: go to Sri Lanka to meet some of the friendliest people on Earth!

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Inside Sri Lanka for mature travellers over 50

SilverTravelAdvisor: Many tourists who visit Sri Lanka never get much further than its glorious beach resorts with their infinity pools and all-inclusive luxury.

Yet the country has so much more to offer with ancient cities, Buddhist temples, hillside tea plantations and wildlife sanctuaries, all offering a unique cultural experience.

Sri Lanka is a compact country, around the size of Wales, with a good network of buses and trains. To get the most out of your visit, the best way is to hire a car with a driver. It’s not expensive, less than £50 a day including the driver’s meals and accommodation, and it gives you the flexibility to stop whenever you want.

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