Sri Lanka is a country blessed with cultural, historical and natural wealth and this is ubiquitously put on display in the country's southern region. It's along these honey-coloured beaches where the world-famous stilt fishing is practiced, while many spots across its sun-kissed coastline serve as perfect launch pads for whale watching. The once-bustling trading port of Galle, with its Dutch-colonial buildings, grandiose mansions and ancient mosques, is also found here. Beyond the seaside towns, the South is also the heart of the hill country, known for its lush rolling hills rich in tea plantations, cascading waterfalls, hiking trails and spectacular mountain ranges. Among the ranges lies the country's most sacred mountain requiring some 5,500 steps to ascend. Adam's Peak (or Sri Pada), is a pilgrim site believed to have the footprint of lord Buddha himself. To top it all off, these lands are also blessed with verdant national parks bursting with wildlife, so animal encounters are guaranteed.