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The Best of Sri Lanka

Duration
10 Days
Prices From:
US$ 2,211

Explore the best of Sri Lanka and visit the country’s natural and historical sites. As you traverse the island, you’ll experience the markets and bustle of Colombo, see hundreds of Buddhist temples in Polonnaruwa, ascend the rock of Sigiriya, and head on game drives in Yala National Park.


This 10-day Sri Lanka vacation takes you across the South Asian nation to showcase its most famous sites, from the bustling capital, Colombo, to the rock of Sigiriya to the temples and holy sites of Polonnaruwa and Kandy.

Like most Sri Lanka vacations, your journey begins in Colombo, the nation’s capital. Although it has not regained the mantle of “Garden City of the East,” Colombo continues to restores its colonial charms and innovate against growing urban sprawl. It also remains a meeting point for East and West, where local culture still has traces of Portuguese, Dutch, and British colonial influences. Take a drive through the pristine streets of Race Course to experience one of the city’s glitzy neighbourhoods before heading to Pettah to visit the floating market and get some local souvenirs. Also be sure to visit Viharamahadevi Park to see the giant Buddha statue and shop at some of the buzzling local malls before continuing on to Dambulla.

Dambulla is Sri Lanka’s most impressive cave temple, dating back from the 1st century B.C. and containing 150 images of the Buddha and bodhisattvas carved across the walls of its five caves. Head on to Polonnaruwa to explore hundreds of temple ruins and tombs spread out across an ancient royal city. The Kingdom of Polonnaruwa reigned for 800 years and many of its greatest sites, including the spectacular Buddhist enclosure known as the Quandrangle, remain in Polonnaruwa to this day.

Your Sri Lanka vacation continues on to the massive rock of Sigiriya, the country’s most iconic site. The rock of Sigiriya rises out of the misty forests of the country’s centre and has steep vertical walls culminating in a massive plateau adorned with ancient ruins. While the nature of these ruins is unknown, it’s possible the rock was once home to an ancient monastery or royal palace. Regardless of their true nature, the ruins of Sigiriya are incredible historical marvels. Once you climb the steep staircases of the rock and achieve the summit, you’ll also be treated to breathtaking sights of the surrounding countryside.

Continue on to Kandy, where you’ll get a taste for ordinary Sri Lankan life. The city combines urban bustle with ancient Buddhist relics. While the city is humid and often rainy, it sits on the shores of the gorgeous Kandy Lake and offers incredible sights, rain or shine. Chief among Kandy’s landmarks is the sacred Temple of the Tooth, which holds a tooth of the Lord Buddha himself. Afterwards, explore the lakefront and visit a bazaar to peruse local arts and crafts. Continue on to the seaside village, Ella, where you can spend your time strolling alongside temples and waterfalls. Along the way, you’ll stop to tour a tea plantation to learn about the production of world famous Ceylon tea. While in Ella, you will also visit The Nine Arches, or The Bridge in the Sky, one of the most iconic bridges in the island nation.

From Ella, continue your Sir Lanka vacation by heading to Tissamaharama (just “Tissa” to the locals), which is the gateway to several nearby national parks. In Tissa, you’ll have the opportunity to pass into Yala National Park, the country’s most famous nature reserve, where monkeys, elephants, and buffalo roam across a landscape of plains, forests, and lagoons. A game drive through Yala is a great way to spot some incredible animal life.

Pass westward along the coast to Galle, an old Dutch trading port that is famous for its colonial buildings, mosques, churches, and mansions. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Galle is a great place to explore. The 16th century Portuguese Fort is the chief attraction here; it is unique for being surrounded by the ocean on three sides. You’ll also visit the Cathedral of St. Mary and the Japanese Peace Pagoda. As a whole, Galle is one of the most charming spots in the entire country. Close out your Sri Lanka vacation in Bentota, a coastal resort town to the south of Colombo. Relax on the golden-sand beaches and enjoy the easygoing atmosphere supplied by the resorts, boutique hotels, and abundant warm weather.

This trip to Sri Lanka promises the best of this incredible South Asian nation.


 

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Duration
10 Days
Prices From:
US$ 2,211

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Arrive Colombo

Welcome to Sri Lanka! Seductive beaches and tempting water sports, magnificent landscapes featuring lazy lagoons, fertile wetlands, ecologically-wondrous types of forest, imposing mountains, bounteous rivers and waterfalls, an abundance of wildlife - much of it endemic - unique ecosystems, inspiring heritage sites from ancient cities to colonial forts, a vibrant culture including fine arts and crafts and grand festivals, and a people of diverse ethnicity and religious persuasion, charming and hospitable.

The throbbing metropolis, Colombo, located in the West - is not only the country's commercial capital, but also the turbine that impels above 50% of the national GDP flanking Colombo's fancy urban development effort. Drive along the clean streets edging the crystal white Race Course - horse racing hub in 1893 and World War II airstrip - furnished today with lavish clothing, food & tea boutiques. Enjoy a visit to Pettah & tune into the Floating Market - an offbeat shopping experience - or feel the buzz surrounding the upcoming inspiration, the Colombo Port City. The face of the city is fast changing its face. Almost overnight, skyscrapers arise from where old buildings once stood. Yet in some parts, the old world charm is retained. For example, there is a 100-year-old clock tower and several British built colonial buildings. Other places of interest are the Pettah bazaar - where one can shop for bargain, a Hindu and a Buddhist temple, residential areas - where you find stately homes of the affluent and the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) - an outright gift to Sri Lanka from the People's Republic of China.

Arrive and proceed to your hotel.

Duration1 Night
Accommodation

OZO Colombo

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    OZO Colombo


    OZO Colombo offers cozy yet contemporary rooms complete with Sri Lankan charm. Amenities include a rooftop pool and lounge, fitness centre and free WiFi. Set on the nice side of quiet, the hotel was closed enough to the city centre, yet far enough to get …

    OZO Colombo offers cozy yet contemporary rooms complete with Sri Lankan charm. Amenities include a rooftop pool and lounge, fitness centre and free WiFi. Set on the nice side of quiet, the hotel was closed enough to the city centre, yet far enough to get away. Located a couple minutes from Galle Road and an hour's drive from Bandaranaike International Airport, OZO Colombo that 'just right' hotel in Colombo you're looking for, the place that feels like home when you're away.

    Facilities

    • 24 hour Front desk
    • Daily Housekeeping
    • Fitness Centre
    • Free WiFi
    • Lounge
    • Restaurant
    • Rooftop Pool

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Day 2

Colombo - Dambulla - Polonnaruwa - Habarana

Today you will drive to Dambulla. Dating back to the 1st Century BC is the most impressive cave temple in Sri Lanka -- The Dambulla Rock Temple. It has five caves under a vast overhanging rock, carved with a drip line to keep the interiors dryThere are images of the Lord Buddha and bodhisattvas, as well as various gods and goddesses. It contains over 150 images of the Buddha of which the largest is the colossal figure of the Buddha carved out of rock and spanning 14 metres. This temple is also known as the Golden Temple of Dambulla and is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Continue to Polonnaruwa Sri Lanka's medieval capital & crown jewel of King Parakramabahu I. Walk across its scattered walls of the World Heritage Site - blessed by stupas, resting Buddha statues, irrigation canals and fantastically carved Hindu sculptures.Take a close glance and you will realize a subtle Hindu influence on architecture and statues found in Polonnaruwa. Here you will visit the ruins of the Royal Palace, of King Parakramabahu I built in the 11th Century, The Gal Vihara which is one of the most famous sites in Sri Lanka. It consists of three figures of Lord Buddha carved out of a cliff of granite. The first figure is a sitting Buddha with an artificial cavern cut out of the rock. The other two are an upright Buddha and a reclining Buddha. The reclining Buddha is 14 m (46 ft) in length. Other places that you will visit is The Audience Hall which contains exquisite stone carvings, bas-relief elephants support the base of this building and the entrance has two flights of steps with moonstones flanked by mythical dragons. The Lotus Bath located within the Jetavanarama Monastery is this elegant pond built in the shape of an open lotus. Nissanka Latha Mandapaya is a square building with fine rock cut railing going all around the Dalada Maluwa area of the ancient kingdom of Polonnaruwa. A must see is the Parakrama Samudraya - this vast water reservoir was built by King Parakramabahu-the Great (1153-1186) acres of paddy land is supported by this reservoir.

After your visit proceed to the hotel.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Habarana Village by Cinnamon

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    Habarana Village by Cinnamon



    Bordering a lake and hidden amidst the bushes of Sri Lanka's dry zone in the north central province sits Habarana Village by Cinnamon. The hotel strive to combine the air of a traditional Sri Lankan village with rustic luxury to give you a very different …

    Bordering a lake and hidden amidst the bushes of Sri Lanka's dry zone in the north central province sits Habarana Village by Cinnamon. The hotel strive to combine the air of a traditional Sri Lankan village with rustic luxury to give you a very different take on the resort experience. Considered to be a great Sigiriya hotel, providing access to myriad historical and natural sites, staying here is the pinnacle of leisure, quiet times and personal exploration.

    Facilities

    • Meeting Rooms
    • Spa

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Day 3

Habarana - Sigiriya - Kandy

Today you will drive to Sigiriya - rising 200m straight up over the dusty plains of north central Sri Lanka, the flat-topped rock formation of Sigiriya is not only one of the island's most impressive geological formations but also one of its greatest archaeological legacies. Sigiriya (Lion's rock) is an ancient rock fortress and palace ruin situated in the central Matale District of Sri Lanka. This is one of the seven World Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka.

Thereafter you will drive to Kandy which is the he English name for the city of Maha Nuvara . It was the last capital of the ancient kings' era of Sri Lanka. The city lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy plateau, which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is one of the most scenic cities in Sri Lanka; it is both an administrative and religious city.

Arrive and proceed to the hotel.

Later today you will explore the city and visit The Temple of the Tooth Relic and it was declared by the UNESCO has a world heritage in 1988. According to Sri Lankan legends, when Buddha died in India his body was cremated in a sandalwood pyre and his left canine tooth was retrieved from the funeral pyre by a spiritual practitioner -- Khema who in turn gave it to King Brahmadatte for veneration. Your tour also includes a drive around the Kandy Lake. You will also explore the Kandy town and bazaar, the arts and crafts Center, a gem museum and a lapidary!

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Amaya Hills

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    Amaya Hills


    The Amaya Hills Hotel Kandy is located about 90 minutes' drive from Colombo. It is perched on a forested, tranquil hill, a short drive from Kandy City. The Amaya Hills Hotel has been designed in a modern, local Kandyan style. Rooms have good amenities with …

    The Amaya Hills Hotel Kandy is located about 90 minutes' drive from Colombo. It is perched on a forested, tranquil hill, a short drive from Kandy City. The Amaya Hills Hotel has been designed in a modern, local Kandyan style. Rooms have good amenities with individual balconies or terraces. An excellent spa offers a range of traditional and natural treatments.

    Facilities

    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant

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Day 4

Kandy - Tea Plantation - Ella

Today you will drive to Ella - a quaint hill side village offering the most amazing view in all of Sri Lanka, Ella is ideal for leisurely treks. Trudge through tea plantations, temple sites and waterfalls through the day.Welcome the night with clear skies, twinkling stars and the distant glow of light houses in the Southern Coast. En route you will visit a Tea Plantation. Sri Lanka, Tea and Tourism are words which cannot be separated. Take a tour to the cold & misty hills that take pride of an ultimate tea tour, covering lush green blankets of tea plantations. Or just step into a tea factory processing the prestigious brand of Ceylon Tea, to observe a rich tradition kept alive up to date. As you observe the hissing and swishing of machines, inhaling the heavenly scent arising from these facilities, make sure to end your day in style over a perfectly blended cup of pure Ceylon Tea.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Ella Mount Heaven Hotel

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    Ella Mount Heaven Hotel



    Ella Mount Heaven is a new luxurious addition to the hotel chain of Ella. It is distinctive, design-forward and styled for the contemporary traveler with its unique style. The accommodation suites define eye-catching boutique style hotel blending with magnificent hill country scenery.

    Ella Mount Heaven is a new luxurious addition to the hotel chain of Ella. It is distinctive, design-forward and styled for the contemporary traveler with its unique style. The accommodation suites define eye-catching boutique style hotel blending with magnificent hill country scenery.

    Facilities

    • Private Swimming Pool
    • Private Swimming Pool

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Day 5

Ella

Today you will explore the area and visit The Nine Arches also called The Bridge in the sky) is one of the most iconic bridges in Sri Lanka and is one of the best examples of British railway constructions when Ceylon was yet a colony of the British Empire.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 6

Ella - Tissamaharama

Today you will drive to Tissamaharama one of the most pleasant towns in the southern coast! It used to be the capital of the Sinhalese Kingdom of Ruhuna as early as the 3rd century B.C. Only few buildings from that period can still be seen today. The large artificial Tissa Wewa Lake, which was a part of a sophisticated irrigation system, also dates from that time. Arrive and proceed to the hotel.

Spreading into a vast 1259 sq. km., Yala - with its glory spinning around vast grasslands, shrubs, tanks and dunes - rightfully is the heartland of wildlife in Sri Lanka. As your jeep rumble through the giant gates of Yala, you are not only stepping into the most visited national park in the country, but also the lands of a civilization which thrived during the reign of Sri Lankan kings. You name it, and Yala has it! Its usual inmates cover herds of elephant, sloth bear, spotted dear, jackal, extensively populated birdlife as well as the highest density of leopards in the world that garnish the park to be one of the finest destinations in the country. Feel the rough track as your jeep thunders over rocks and swish passing narrow bends for an exhilarating experience blended with the cries of wilderness under the tropical sun.

This afternoon you will enjoy a safari through the park.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Laya Safari

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    Laya Safari



    Laya Safari is uniquely set in a location that has access to many scenic and cultural elements ranging from the Yala National Park to ancient ruins to undulating sand dunes to pristine beaches and significant religious locations. To describe the experience in a nutshell, it's: …

    Laya Safari is uniquely set in a location that has access to many scenic and cultural elements ranging from the Yala National Park to ancient ruins to undulating sand dunes to pristine beaches and significant religious locations. To describe the experience in a nutshell, it's: sun, sand, safari and sacred sites all rolled into one destination!

    Facilities

    • Jacuzzi
    • Bar
    • Gym
    • Laundry
    • Restaurant
    • Spa and Wellness Centre

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Day 7

Tissamaharama - Galle

This morning collect a packed breakfast and proceed to Yala and enjoy another safari through the park. Thereafter you will drive to Galle, the capital city of the Southern Province of Sri Lanka. The port town of Galle is Sri Lanka's fourth biggest town and its history dates back to 1505 when a Portuguese fleet bound for Maldives was blown off course and took shelter in the Galle Harbor. Galle is the best example of a fortified city built by the Europeans in in south and Southeast Asia and displays the unique blend between European architectural styles and south Asian traditions. The Galle Fort was built first in 1588 by the Portuguese and then extensively fortified by the Dutch during the 17th century from 1649 onwards. The fort has a colorful history, and is also known as the Dutch Fort or the "Ramparts of Galle "withstood the Boxing Day Tsunami which damaged part of coastal are of Galle town. You will also visit The Cathedral of St. Mary, Queen of the Holy Rosary, is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Galle. It is a landmark in the City of Galle, Sri Lanka. The church is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Japanese Peace Pagoda is one of the most tranquil attractions of the city and it exudes a sense of calm. A must-visit for those seeking spirituality and inner peace, this attraction makes for an excellent trek and also offers mesmerizing views from the top of the double-storey structure.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Amari Galle

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    Amari Galle



    You could be the wanderlust in search of new adventures, or one yearning for a mellow seaside escape. The plan could be to do it all or nothing at all. You've seen the pictures, read the reviews, you're about to make a choice, we sincerely …

    You could be the wanderlust in search of new adventures, or one yearning for a mellow seaside escape. The plan could be to do it all or nothing at all. You've seen the pictures, read the reviews, you're about to make a choice, we sincerely believe that Galle is that 'just right' destination for you. The locals, the charm, the sea, sights and sounds, all waiting to be found. Don't just take it from us, discover this amazing town, discover it with Amari Galle.

    Facilities

    • Fitness Centre
    • Meeting and Event Facilities
    • Spa Services
    • Swimming Pool
    • Wedding Facilities

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Day 8

Galle - Bentota

Today you will proceed to the coastal town of Bentota, check in to your hotel and the rest of the day is at leisure.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

The Surf Hotel

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    The Surf Hotel



    The location of the Surf Hotel facilitates immediate contact with the most genuine aspects of Sri Lanka's coastal adventures, ranging from Hot air ballooning to Paramotoring (seasonal only) to Whale watching, the Surf Hotel is ready to arrange an adventure packed holiday for you.

    The location of the Surf Hotel facilitates immediate contact with the most genuine aspects of Sri Lanka's coastal adventures, ranging from Hot air ballooning to Paramotoring (seasonal only) to Whale watching, the Surf Hotel is ready to arrange an adventure packed holiday for you.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Dining facilities
    • Spa Services
    • Swimming Pool
    • Wellness Center

    More Details

Day 9

Bentota

Day at leisure.

Meal Plan Breakfast
Day 10

Bentota - Colombo

Proceed to Colombo and proceed to the airport to connect with your onwards flight.

Meal Plan Breakfast

Other Information

DEPARTURES:

Daily

PRICE INCLUDES:

  • 9 nights' accommodation in Standard Rooms
  • Daily Breakfast
  • Transportation by air conditioned vehicle
  • English speaking chauffeur guide
  • Entrance fees included for;
    • Dambulla Cave Temple
    • Polonnaruwa
    • Sigiriya Rock Fortress
    • Kandy Temple
    • Cultural Dance
  • Welcome with garlands at the airport
  • Two shared jeep safaris in Yala National Park

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:

Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please inquire.

TB TRAILBLCOL0321SG: BSLFC 2
10 Oct 2021
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