[HopTour Sri Lanka] Ecowave, a responsible business [2/2] Where do elephants live?

Why did we decide to stay 3 days with EcoWave? The answer here. Today we are going to tell you about our excursions around Pottuvil Lagoon and Cooking class.

Pottuvil Lagoon – where the wild elephants are living!

Pottuvil Lagoon is not a national park but its wealth is surprising. Situated only 4 km from Arugam Bay, it’s ideal for few hours getaway.

EcoWave offers to visit this place in canoe. So we did. Both of us, our guide Ibrahim and the captain of our canoe. Few fishermen joined us in their peanut-boats. Thousands of birds, unmoved by our presence, played a morning show – bathing, chatting with neighbors, taking breakfast and lazing on the trees. At such a show everybody would be impressed! We highly recommend you to get up before sunrise, order a tuk-tuk (the day before), leave at 5am and after 15 minutes you will be able to verify what it means to be in the bird kingdom (Thanks god, we had a fast training with Robbi in Chengdu / China). Let me mention only few birds: little green bee-eater, kingfisher, hawk eagle…. That day we regreted for not having neither equipment, nor the skills to grasp what our eyes saw… But have a look at this beautiful gallery!

One more reason to get up before sunrise - there are wild elephants living there. In the morning they hang around Arugam Bay moving between Kumana National Park and Pottuvil floodplains. View of several adults on the far horizon wading in the lagoon near the mangrove trees - wow! It will stay in our memory for a long time. During the day we saw several more elephants from afar - in the bath, by the road and in the bushes 🙂

Remember that the elephants live wildly and under no circumstances should you approach them!

Another reason to visit the lagoon is the mangrove forest. Apart from the fact, that these trees growing in the water are just beautiful, they are also an amazing nest for all the animals we mentioned.

Our trip finished in an organic farm, where we had opportunity to see vegetables and fruits growing on the beach… yeah, straight on the beach. First, we thought it was simply impossible, we even suspected it might be some kind of “Sexmission”* dummy, but after a short visit, some explanations and the lunch we did understand. Vegetables were delicious and bananas…. mmmmm!

*sexmission” it’s a polish, cult movie from early 80’s. It tells the story about world without men 🙂

Eggplant curry, dhal, sambol and many more! A cooking workshop

We both love to cook – few people can confirm! My favorite veg is potato, and David loves rice. It turned out that in Sri Lanka we can combine these two things and serve them together in CURRY! So let’s try to learn how to do it!

We found a cooking class with EcoWave. Together with Ibrahim and Anurada we prepared some dishes from local cuisine. Everything was the most delicious ever, but our heart stole SAMBOL. And we will briefly talk about it here.

Sambol can be a curry additive or a dish in itself. About curry you can find more information in our article about Sri Lankan cuisine 🙂, but in general curry is few dishes served with rice. Going back to our star. To prepare sambol you need fresh coconut. In Sri Lanka you will find several kind of coconuts. This little one, hairy and hard inside is the right one for our dish. To break the shell you need to hit it strong with something heavy 🙂 then you need to remove the nut (be carefully – it’s so good). Once it’s dry you mix it with tomato, onion, chili and spices – and it is ready!

 

 

Sambol

½ coconut – half of the hard nut
½ red onion
2 small tomatoes
A few curry leaves, a pinch of salt,
½ tea spoon curry,
1-2 tea spoons of chili, 1-2 limes

 

Whiped off the coconut and shake it with 2 glasses of water to obtein fresh coconut milk. You can use it to cook something different (like curry cauliflower) for sambol we don’t need it. Mix dry ….

With chopped tomato, onion, chili and spiecies. At th end add lime juice to taste.

 

 

What impressed us during the workshop was primarily the knowledge of where the products came from. We saw them the day before growing in the field.  EcoWave staff was very dedicated and focused on what we were doing. During 3 hours working we took few pages of notes, so dear friends, be ready! We are coming to conquer your kitchens soon!

Thanks EcoWave for showing us that it is possible to create responsible business in tourism, to involve people with passion believing in what they do. See you soon!

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