Sri Lanka is excellent for gemstones especially sapphires, moon-stones and cats-eye. Other items to look out for include spices, wood carvings and other handicrafts like batik and hand-woven textiles, brassware, handmade lace from Galle and of course tea. Tea varies in quality, so if you’re buying in bulk, ask for a tasting. If seeking modern local chic, Colombo offers a selection of department stores and stylish boutiques. Refrain from buying souvenirs made of coral - which contributes to the destruction of Sri Lanka’s reefs, ivory or the hides of animals which may have been obtained illegally and are also illegal to export.