Apart from sampling the local cuisine, part of the fun when travelling to new destinations involves also trying out the local firewater. Here are three suggestions for drinks to try in Sri Lanka that should give you a taste of the good, the bad and the thirst quenching.

Toddy – A popular brew made from fermented coconut palm sap and served in toddy shacks. White liquid that’s a bit of an acquired taste. Don’t believe anyone who tells you it has a slight cider-ish taste; they are not your friend.

Arrack – classier version of coconut palm sap that has been distilled until it’s an attractive golden colour and tastes almost like a sweet whisky. Works well as a long cool drink mixed with Seven Up/Sprite. Especially nice after a long hot day trekking through the jungle…or topping up the tan on the beach.

Lion Beer – Crisp, refreshing, slightly sweet, slightly hoppy lager that goes down far too easily in Sri Lanka’s humid climate. Available just about everywhere.

Image: Rockland Ceylon Arrack

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