2005 Grand Journey – Thailand, India, Sri Lanka, Maldives & Singapore

2005 Grand Journey – Thailand, India, Sri Lanka, Maldives & Singapore


We had long planned to visit Thailand, Sri Lanka, Southern India and the Maldives last winter. We were taken aback when we learned the day after Christmas that our entire vacation itinerary had been hit by a tsunami! Keeping with our peculiar history of visiting regions shortly after a major turmoil (Indonesian food riots, Argentine currency collapse…) we surveyed the impact and decided to continue as planned. Tourism is an important income stream for these countries, so it was our way to help.


We started out in Bangkok  , our longtime favorite. Got over jetlag, sated ourselves with fiery Thai cuisine and Singha Beer, and then headed off to Sri Lanka: a fabulous place, very different from neighboring India and a new country for both of us. Its original name, Serendib, suits it well. Think of a cross between the Garden of Eden, Rudyard Kipling’s “Jungle Book” a quintessential British colonial outpost of the 1930s, then add some Buddhist monks.

From Sri Lanka, we headed to southern India for a couple weeks. India is an intense experience — difficult to visit, but with commensurate rewards. We saw stunning temples, castles, carving, dancing — India has such an ancient and rich history, yet we know so little of it. If you haven’t visited India, you haven’t seen the world.

FilIsland For contrast (and to recover), we booked two weeks at a resort in the Maldives after India. The Maldives are a nation of tiny sand islands spread across several major atolls, located to the southwest of Sri Lanka. The islands are very small; generally, there is one resort per island. It was heaven – our room was right on a beach, great snorkeling right outside our front door, diving through massive schools of fish, fabulous food and drink (and all-inclusive!). It is by far the best resort we’ve ever been to, and we have promised ourselves to return soon.

We finished up with by visiting some of our old haunts – Singapore, Chiang Mai, and Bankok.

You can follow the page-by-page links below, or jump directly to where you want to start:

Bangkok http://blessley.net/?p=902

Sri Lanka http://blessley.net/?p=613

Southern India http://blessley.net/?p=863

Maldives http://blessley.net/?p=888

Singapore &  Chiang Mai http://blessley.net/?p=898

2005 grand tour map

Comments are closed.
%d bloggers like this: