Highlights of Sri Lanka Tour
SRI LANKA TOUR HIGHLIGHTS
Join other Solo Travellers on this amazing 10-day Highlights of Sri Lanka tour. Spot Sri Lankan wildlife on safari at the Yala National Park, expect to see Indian elephants, wild boar and if you’re really lucky, perhaps even a leopard. Visit the ancient city of Sigiriya and climb to the top of the magnificent Lion’s Rock for incredible views of the area. Be stunned by the scenery in Kandy, home to the ‘Temple of the Tooth’, where it is believed the sacred tooth of Lord Buddha is enshrined. Spend two nights in Polonnaruwa and explore the ancient cave temples of Dambulla. Take the train journey of a lifetime through Nuwara Eliya’s tea plantations, enjoying the beautiful scenery as you travel. And finally, unwind on the relaxing beaches of Mirissa, an area well known for it’s whale watching at certain times of year. Still relatively untouched by tourism, now is the time to discover the spectacularly exotic island of Sri Lanka.
Take one of the most scenic train journeys in the world through Nuwara Eliya
Spot leopards, elephants and buffalo on safari in Yala National Park
Relax on the beautiful southern beaches of Mirissa
Discover the Kandy and one of Buddhisms most sacred shrines; the Temple of the Tooth
Day 1 – Arrive Colombo
When you arrive in Sri Lanka, make your way to the hotel in Negombo for check-in, which will be from 2pm onwards. Today is an arrival day so there are no planned activities. If you arrive in time, you can join your guide and the rest of the group for dinner to get to know your fellow travellers! Overnight in Negombo.
Day 2 – Negombo / Dambulla / Polonnaruwa
After breakfast at the hotel, you will proceed to Polonnaruwa. En route, you will visit the Dambulla Cave Temples which date back to the 2nd century. There are over 80 caves in Dambulla, some of which are used for meditation by monks. When you reach Polonnaruwa, you will be given a cooking demonstration in a local village house. Overnight in Polonnaruwa. (Driving Time: approx. 4-hours)
Day 3 – Polonnaruwa / Sigiriya
Today you will climb Lion’s Rock, considered the eighth wonder of the world, for spectacular views over Sigiriya. In the afternoon, we’ll explore Polonnaruwa by bicycle. This ancient city dates back to the 12th century and is a great example of Sri Lankan architecture of that time. During your bike ride you will visit the exciting site of Gal Viharaya, huge stone monoliths of the lord Buddha in sitting, standing and reclining positions. Overnight in Polonnaruwa.
Day 4 – Polonnaruwa / Matale / Kandy
After breakfast, you will be travelling to the cultural centre of the Sri Lanka, Kandy. Surrounded by hills, valleys, rivers, lakes and waterfalls, this beautiful area is a UNESCO World Heritage city, great for souvenir shopping and learning about the areas rich history and culture. In the afternoon, you will visit the ‘Temple of the Tooth’, where the sacred tooth of Lord Buddha is enshrined. In the evening, witness a colourful Kandyan dance performance at a local theatre. Overnight in Kandy. (Driving Time: approx. 3-hours)
Day 5 – Kandy / Nuwara Eliya
After breakfast, take a stroll in the Peradeniya Royal Botanical Garden, and its best-known attraction, the Orchid House, which houses more than 300 varieties of exquisite orchids. The Mahaweli River, Sri Lanka’s longest river, surrounds the garden making it extra beautiful. In the afternoon, you will be taking one of the most scenic train journeys in Sri Lanka to Nuwara Eliya. This area is considered one of the most important locations for tea cultivation and is well known for its cooler climate. Overnight in Nuwara Eliya.
Day 6 – Nuwara Eliya / Ella / Tissamaharama
After breakfast, depart Nuwara Eliya and journey to Ella, Sri Lanka’s most beautiful village. Ella’s main claim to fame is its’ viewpoint, from where you can see down through the tea plantations as far as the south coast on a clear day. From here you will drive to Tissamaharama, for a late afternoon jeep safari in the Yala National Park. Inside the park you can expect to see wild boar, elephants, leopards, deer, peacocks and many more animals. Overnight in Tissamaharama. (Driving Time: approx. 3.5-hours)
Day 7 – Tissamaharama / Mirissa
After breakfast at the hotel you will be travelling to Mirissa. In the afternoon, you will visit Galle Fort, which was first built by the Portuguese in 1588 and maintains a polished appearance due to extensive reconstruction work by the Archaeological Department of Sri Lanka. Overnight in Mirissa. (Driving Time: approx. 2.5-hours)
Day 8 – Mirissa
Today will be a free day, spent at your leisure. There is also the option to go whale watching today (available November – April), starting at 6am, you’ll spend between 3-5 hours at sea. Overnight in Mirissa.
Day 9 – Mirissa / Negombo
After breakfast, you will have the rest of the day at leisure. A late afternoon transfer takes you back to Negombo where you will spend the last night of your tour. (Driving Time: approx. 3-hours)
Day 10 – Negombo / Depart Colombo
After breakfast, you will have the rest of the day at leisure until your international flight departure. Not ready to head home just yet? Why not join our 9-day trip to Kerala and discover more of this incredible part of the world!
WHAT'S INCLUDED IN THE SRI LANKA TOUR
- Sharing a twin room at 3-star hotels with breakfast
- English speaking local guide throughout
- Entrance fees
- Cookery demonstration
- Train ticket from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya
- Yala National Park entrance and jeep hire
- All transportation for sightseeing excursions with A/C vehicles
- Up to six weeks before departure, a place can be reserved on the Sri Lanka tour on payment of a deposit of £150.00, after this date it would be the full amount of the trip.
- Click the book now button and fill in the details and tick the box confirming you accept booking conditions.
- The outstanding balance is due 6 weeks before travel.
- Flights are not included in the cost of this trip and will need to be booked separately. Please do not book flights until we have given the go-ahead. Feel free to ask us if you need any help with booking.
- Please ensure you have checked visa requirements. Get in touch if you are unsure.
- Ensure you have purchased travel insurance, as this is mandatory for all trips.
ESSENTIAL TRIP NOTES
You will need to make sure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months from date of entry and that you have a couple of blank pages. Please ensure the name on your booking and flight match your passport.
It is the responsibility of the traveler to ensure they have the correct visa for travel. Information can be found for British nationals on the FCO website. If you are a British passport holder, you will need a visa to enter Sri Lanka and this can be applied for online before you travel. If you hold any other nationality passport or originate from another country, please check the relevant embassy website.
You may want to take a copy of your passport and flight confirmations with you – if you lose the originals it is easier to get replacements if you have copies.
FLIGHT TICKETS AND ACCOMMODATION
Please ensure you have proof of return travel tickets and hotel accommodation to hand for arrival as you may need to present details of this.
Travel insurance is mandatory for all trips and you will need to carry a copy of your certificate with you. If you haven’t purchased It already, we have partnered up with Columbus Travel Insurance and you can buy your policy through us.
MONEY & COSTS
The currency in Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR). You can take cash out of ATM’s in Sri Lanka or take GBP, Euros or US Dollars to change when you arrive. Please ensure any notes you bring to exchange are in good condition. Credit Cards are accepted at some restaurants and shops, but it’s best to have some cash.
We recommend budgeting £15 – £25 a day for meals, water, drinks (not including alcohol) etc. however this is just an indicative amount and can vary from local restaurants to more western style, so you may end up spending less or more. Any souvenir shopping you wish to do would be on top of this. You will have a better idea of how much you usually spend when on holiday, so please plan accordingly.
If you feel as though you have received a good service, please reward your local guides and drivers with a tip. We recommend £3 – £4 per person, per day for local guides and £1 – £2 per person, per day for your drivers. Tipping is of course voluntary but gratefully accepted in recognition of good service.
If you would prefer to have your own room on this trip, the additional cost would be £299. Please let us know at the time of booking as it cannot be guaranteed closer to the time.
We will be covering a lot of ground on this trip and there will be a couple of long drives involved, so if you ever feel like you need to take a break or want to get out and stretch your legs, let your guide or driver know so that we can stop. You will be travelling in private air-conditioned buses.
We will also be taking one of the most scenic train journeys in the country as we travel between Kandy and Nuwara Eliya on Day 5. The journey should take approximately 4 hours.
WHAT TO PACK
- Comfortable walking shoes or trainers
- We recommend dressing modestly in Sri Lanka especially when visiting holy sites. You should also take lightweight, loose-fitting clothing as the climate is tropical meaning it’s hot and humid throughout most of the year. The weather varies all over the island. During the First Inter-Monsoon season (MAR-APR) you can experience thunderstorm-type rain whilst it’s still warm and humid. The Southwest-monsoon season (MAY-SEP) can rain anytime of the day. The second inter-monsoon season (OCT-NOV) has monsoon-type rain and can be windy. Northeast-monsoon season (DEC-FEB) gives dry but cool weather, with cold morning showers.
- Adequate sun protection – hats, sunglasses, sunscreen
- Waterproof jacket is a must for those tropical downpours!
- Insect repellent
- Refillable water bottle if it has built in filters
- Camera with spare batteries and memory cards – you’re going to want to take some photos!
- Power bank
- Plug adaptors – these can be viewed via the link: https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/sri-lanka/
We never recommend taking more luggage than you can personally carry as there might not always be someone on hand to help you. One suitcase ideally that can be wheeled, and a small day pack will be more than enough.
Whilst travelling around, we recommend you don’t bring anything you won’t really need – expensive jewellery and watches are not necessary, you can leave them at home. Be vigilant always and avoid carrying large amounts of money around with you. You could invest in a money belt to go under your clothes to keep cards, money or air tickets in for extra safety.
HEALTH & MEDICAL
You should visit your doctor or travel nurse a minimum of 8 weeks before your departure date to make sure your vaccinations are all up to date. Please check the government website if you need more information.
It is not recommended to drink tap water in Sri Lanka. Although it is clean and safe for locals to drink, what you are used to at home will differ and you could end up with an upset stomach. You should keep hydrated whilst you’re out there, so make sure you always have a bottle of water with you.
If you take medication for anything or think you may need something whilst you are away, it’s better to take it with you from the UK as items may not be as readily available as they are here.
If you are travelling from a country with a risk of Yellow Fever, you will need to take a valid certificate with you to prove you have had the vaccine.
We recommend you read the travel advice for any country you are visiting ahead of your visit. This can be accessed on the FCO website.