If you like the itinerary below please quote REF SRI LANKA 680 when enquiring for further details.
Alternatively you may like modify this trip with your own Holiday Wish List
Welcome to Sri Lanka! You will be met at Colombo airport and transferred to our hotel in Colombo. The rest of the day is at leisure.
Morning leave for Giritale – En route visit the Dambulla Rock Temple - Climb up to the temple, which was donated by king Walagambahu in the 1st century BC to Buddhist monks. Dambulla is a World Heritage site and is the most impressive of Sri Lanka’s cave temples. On completion proceed to Giritale - Check in at the selected hotel - Afternoon proceed on a sightseeing tour of Polonnaruwa - which was the 2nd capital city of Sri Lanka, built in the 11th and 12th centuries AD, and which is a world heritage site - Here you can see the ruins of the Royal Palace, the Gal Viharaya and the 4 splendid statues of the Buddha. Rest of the day at leisure.
This morning we head to Sigiriya and the famous ‘Lion Rock’ fortress. Built over 1500 years ago, this beautiful citadel stands 200 meters high in the middle of verdant jungle and was an important stronghold of the 70 hectare fortified town. It can be viewed from miles around and is definitely one of Sri Lanka’s most iconic and famous sites. You’ll be able to view the world famous paintings of the Heavenly Maidens which stand in a sheltered pocket of the rock approached by a spiral stairway. Once we’ve fully explored the rock we continue on to a spice garden, where we learn about some of Sri Lanka’s famous spices. Later on we drive further south to Kandy for the evening.
This morning we visit the famous Pinnawala elephant orphanage where we meet some of the 89 abandoned elephants, many of which are babies. On our return to Kandy we stop by the Peradeniya Botanical Gardens home to an amazing variety of plants, flowers and trees. Once back in Kandy itself we embark on a city tour, drive around the lake and visit local bazaars and a local gem museum. Later on this evening we visit the world famous Temple of the Tooth Relic, apparently home to one of Buddha’s teeth.
After breakfast we visit a tea plantation. Tea is one of Sri Lanka’s biggest exports and they are very proud of it. Learn about the manufacturing process and how they grade it before enjoying a delicious cup of pure Ceylon tea in the factory. Next we drive to Nuwara Eliya, the heart of Sri Lanka’s tea country and home to the country’s highest mountain, Pidurutalagala. Later on we embark on a sightseeing tour of the area including a drive through ‘Little England’.
Today we head south to Embilipitiya, our base for exploring Udawalawe National Park. Udawalawe is probably one of the best places to spot the famous Sri Lankan Elephant, the biggest of all the Asian Elephants in the wild. It is thought that there are around 400 elephants here. The park is also home to the elusive leopard, the Sri Lankan Sloth Bear, the cheeky Langur monkey and lots of types of deer. We take an afternoon game drive here before returning to the hotel for the night.
Leave for Colombo via Ratnapura visiting Gem Mines. The gem-mining centre of Sri Lanka is also a major crossroad between southern plains and the hill country to the east. A bustling market city servicing most of the surrounding towns, many of the prominent gem dealers in Sri Lanka operate from this town. Scenery around the town is excellent and charming. Proceed to Colombo and check in at the selected hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight stay at the hotel
Proceed on a sightseeing Tour of Colombo driving through the Commercial area of the “ Fort” so named, because both the Portuguese and Dutch had a Fort at this point. Drive passed “Pettah” – a noisy Oriental bazaar with a hotchpotch of Humanity, ancient vehicles, bargains, mosques & temples. Visit Hindu temple & drive pass Jumi-UL Alfar Jumma Mosque, Continue the tour through the Wolvendaal Dutch Church, Hultsdorf Law courts, to the residential area of Cinnamon Gardens and on to the Independence Square and Bandaranayke Memorial International Conference Hall. And also visit Gangarama Temple. Afternoon Leave for Bentota and check-in to your hotel.
Free day and at your leisure.
Our tour comes to an end this morning, with a transfer back to Colombo airport for your flight home.