Today was the last day with the full tour group before the cricket starts tomorrow. Based on the first two days of the cricket it appears we will be lucky to get even one day at the Test Match.
Our guide Manoj organised for us to stop at two gem mines on the way to Colombo. The first mine wasn’t working today but gave us a good insight into the tough mining conditions. The second mine however have miners at work who were happy to have visited. Several members of the tour group climbed down into the mine. Security isn’t a big thing here, everything is very temporary.
It took about four hours to get to Colombo. Our first stop on the city tour was Independance Square which is were the then Prime Minister of Ceylon announced Independance from Britian back in 1948. Lunch was taken at the nearby shopping centre, somehow most group members found Burger King 🙂
The last temple of the trip was the Gangaramaya Temple established in the 19th century. This Buddhist Temple also has an extensive museum which in addition to religious items has artwork and even vintage cars.
Our last stop for the day was the Galle Face which is an area on the shore of Colombo. This is a gathering place for people to fly kites, relax and feel the ocean. I strolled around this area for a while taking in the excitement of the locals (video here).
That night at the Ozo Colombo Hotel we said goodbye to half the group for the last time.