Richmond Castle, Kalutara


Richmond Castle is an Edwardian Mansion near the southern coastal town of Kalutara in Sri Lanka built between 1900 and 1910. It was the country seat of a local aristocrat Mudliyar Don Arthur de Silva Wijesinghe Siriwardena     In British Colonial era, it was customary for wealthy Sri Lankans to study in Britain.  Arthur…

Ancient Mosques Of Beruwela


    The stark white Kechimalai Mosque stands on a headland at the sleepy southern fishing village of Beruwela in Sri Lanka. Built in 1024, it marks the spot where Moors first landed on the island. Beruwala Maradana Masjidul Abrar Jumma mosque a short distance away is the first mosque of Sri Lanka, built in…

Madu River Revisited


Madu River – a minor watercourse in south-west of Sri Lanka, widens into the Madu Ganga Lake at Balapitiya and flows for a further a 4.4 km before draining into the Indian Ocean. Together with the smaller Randombe Lake, to which the river is connected by two narrow channels, it forms the Madu Ganga wetland dotted with mangrove…

A Day In Dubrovnik


  “Regardless of whether you are visiting Dubrovnik for the first time or the hundredth, the sense of awe never fails to descend when you set eyes on the beauty of the old town. Indeed it’s hard to imagine anyone becoming jaded by the city’s limestone streets, baroque buildings and the endless shimmer of the…

Montenegro – 3. A Day In Kotor


  “Wedged between brooding mountains and a moody corner of the bay, the achingly atmospheric Kotor is perfectly at one with its setting. Hemmed in by staunch walls snaking improbably up the surrounding slopes, the town is a medieval maze of museums, churches, cafe-strewn squares and Venetian palaces and pillories. It’s a dramatic and delightful…

Montenegro – 2. A Day On The Beach


  Beach? There are no sandy beaches along the entire 107.3 km shoreline of Kotor Bay that I know of. Rocky mountain sides dip straight and deep in to the azure sea and ‘beaches’ are either man made gravelly areas or concrete promenades with umbrellas and sun beds. The ‘beach’ below the Volat 2 Cafe in Kracisi is…

Montenegro – 1. Road To Kracisi


The taxi came at 3 in the morning. We drove through the quiet City and sped along the A23 to Gatwick. Dawn was breaking and it started to drizzle. At Gatwick Airport, bags were dropped and we checked ourselves in for the 06.35 EasyJet flight to Tivat. Crisp croissants and black coffee were had for…

Remembrance Sunday – 2017


It is a beautiful, sunny autumn’s day in Yorkshire. It is also Remembrance Day and a small group of us, old friends and colleagues, are having lunch together at the Golf Club.   We sip Louis Roederer Brut and talk about old times. The table was already laid and at twelve thirty, John serves lunch.…

A Bank Holiday Feast


We spent the Spring Bank Holiday weekend in the little Cotswolds village of Notgrove. Our four-bedoomed farm cottage had all the mod cons. Robins frolicked in the garden and Roe deer peered at us from the hedge. One day, we hired Hasan, an Iranian chef to cook us a festive meal. He first served a…

Regent’s Canal Revisited


  A few days ago I took another walk along Regents Canal in East London. Spring was in full swing and cafes and bars along the canal were packed with people out enjoying the warm, sunny weather. I had a pint of excellent Camden ale and walked to Angel.       (See also “A…