The Elephant Gathering
As we drove in our jeeps to the clearing, I was shocked at just how many of these amazing creatures were actually congregating here. We were hoping for a few but were shocked to see hundreds of elephants wandering the open areas. Most were moms and their young, although you would see the occasional male elephant walking on his own away from the herd.
It is absolutely amazing to be so close to these magnificent animals. They are majestic and yet so gentle. Our jeeps didn't seem to bother them but we did have one elephant walk directly towards us and it was up to our driver to edge up enough to get out of his way.
To cap things off, we were surprised by a Sri Lankan cocktail, fresh pineapple and deep fried fish at the end of our viewing. Seeing the wildlife was a great break from the myriad temples that cover Sri Lanka.
Avukana Buddha Statue
On the way out, we decided to stop at a roadside shop for some local snacks. All this touring does make you hungry and no better way to learn about the culture of a country than through it's food. We sampled corn (safe because it's boiled in hot water), snacks, and I even found relief for my chocolate craving. This was our best attempt to "eat local"!