It wasn’t long ago that the idea of Sri Lanka as a popular tourist destination would have seemed unlikely. The country’s bloody, 25-year-long civil war only ended in 2009. But since then, travelers have started flocking to its laid-back beaches and tropical jungles. And Sri Lanka has more to offer than pristine nature. The tiny island nation claims eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites, from sacred Buddhist temples to decaying colonial fortresses. Here, the top spots to visit before the crowds do.Alex Saberi COSMOPOLITAN COLOMBO
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