Destination: Sigiriya, Kandy, Colombo, Galle

From US$ 3,590 to US$ 5,593 11 days excluding flights

DAY 01 –  
Upon arrival, you will be met and greeted by your guide. Thereafter, transfer to Sigiriya , the cultural hub of Sri Lanka. Arrive at your hotel and relax the rest of the day off.   
Overnight in  VIl Uyana, Sigiriya  (MARSH DWELLING - WITH POOL)

DAY 02 –  
After breakfast, visit Sigiriya and climb the majestic Sigiriya Rock and discover the ruins of a once beautiful royal palace at its summit, a testament to the aesthetic sense and technological prowess of the kings of old. (UNESCO World Heritage Site)  Sigiriya – this UNESCO World Heritage Site, a spectacular Rock Fortress, is one of Sri Lanka’s major attractions. The most impressive facets of the unique complex are the Water Gardens, the Frescoes of beautiful maidens, the Mirror Wall with ancient graffiti, the Lion platform and the Summit of 1.6 hectares, which was completely covered by buildings during the period of Sigiriya’s glory. Built by King Kashyapa (477-495 A.D), the “Lion Rock” is a citadel of unusual beauty rising 200m from the scrub jungle. The rock was the innermost stronghold of the 70 hectare fortified town and the base is ringed by a moat, rampart, and extensive gardens. The world-renowned frescoes (originally 500, of which only 19 remain today) which are in a sheltered pocket of the rock approached by a spiral stairway are painted in earth pigments on plaster. The old stairway to the top led through the mouth of a crouching lion but today only the huge paws remain giving an indication of the massive proportions of the head.  Remains of the handsome royal citadel are on the summit and several caves for meditation, audience platforms and baths complete the unique site. 
In the afternoon, enjoy a safari at the Minneriya National Park to witness the many mighty Asian elephants.

MINNERIYA NATIONAL PARK - sitting in the centre of the cultural triangle, Minneriya is a good alternative to the busier parks in the south and it's easy to weave in a day here between visiting the ancient cities. The dry season, preferably from June to September, is the best time to visit the 8,890 hectare park when the ancient tank, the lake that dominates the area, dries out and the grasses and shoots push through. During this time it is possible to see herds of up to 150 elephants feeding and washing, as well as toque macaques, sambar deer and leopards. The hungry bird flocks include cormorants and painted storks. Minneriya, closest by car to the ancient city Polonnaruwa, was upgraded from a nature reserve to a national park because of the increased number of tourists coming to see the elephants

Overnight in  VIl Uyana, Sigiriya   (MARSH DWELLING - WITH POOL)

DAY 03

After breakfast proceed to Polonnaruwa cultural site to explore Sri Lanka’s second medieval capital by bikes. The local bikes are not of excellent quality but good enough for this ride on flat and easy terrain. 
Polonnaruwa – this medieval city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, rose to fame as the capital (10th - 12th century AD) after the decline of Anuradhapura. The entire landscape of the region is punctuated by huge man-made reservoirs, the most famous of which is the Parakrama Samudra or the Sea of Parakrama, larger in size than the Colombo harbour.  The monuments are relatively well preserved and give clear evidence of the glory of Sri Lanka's past. Highlights are the Royal Palace complex including the Kings Palace and Audience Hall, the Quadrangle with its concentration of ancient heritage and the spectacular Gal Vihare complex of four massive images of the Buddha, cut from a single slab of granite - a highlight of ancient Sri Lankan rock carving. Some of the best examples of the Hindu influence – the Temples of Shiva, intricate statues of Hindu Gods, fascinating Budhist temples, the Lankatileka and Watadage, the Galpotha, the Lotus bath, the Kiri Vihare Dagoba and the remains of a former Temple of the Tooth are other impressive sights.

Evening free at leisure for optional activities

Overnight in  VIl Uyana, Sigiriya  (MARSH DWELLING - WITH POOL)

DAY 04
Leave for Kandy after an early breakfast visiting the Dambulla Cave Temples – another UNESCO World Heritage siteDambulla – located in the north central province this UNESCO World Heritage Site which dates back to the 01st century BC, is an amazing complex of 05 caves, first used as a refuge by an ancient king who on regaining his throne, commissioned magnificent carved images within the living rock. Later kings made further improvements and the caves contain over 150 images of the Buddha of which the largest is a colossal figure spanning 15 meters. Cave inscriptions from the 2nd Century BC are found and on the walls are many paintings most of which belong to the Kandy period (early 19th century). This temple is a perfect location to view evolution of ancient Sri Lankan art and is an important historical site due to the amalgamation of the material from many eras. Also, stop over at a spice garden in Matale to see Sri Lankan spices growing in their natural habitat. Take your own spice trail around the gardens. A guided tour will let you see for yourself the humble origins of the exotic ingredients with which we spice up our lives.   

After settling in, take a tour of Kandy including a visit to the much revered Temple of the Tooth Relic of the Lord Buddha (UNESCO World Heritage Site) and also witness a cultural dance performance.  

Kandy – a lovely exotic city, the Hill Capital and last stronghold of the Sinhala Kings is a UNESCO World Heritage Site which retains an aura of grandeur, time has not affected. Encircled by hills, with a tranquil lake in its centre, it is the site of the renowned temple that enshrines the Tooth Relic of the Buddha and the Royal Botanical gardens – home to one of the world’s best collections of Orchids. A cultural sanctuary where many legends, traditions and folklore are still lovingly kept alive, Kandy and its satellite villages are the centre of the islands handicraft industry (items of wood, brass & silver) exquisite silver or gold jewellery and precious gems of many varieties including the world’s best blue and star sapphires. The highlight of the city’s calendar is the Esala Perahera, when a replica of the casket enclosing the Tooth is taken in procession for ten glittering nights in July/August by exotically costumed dancers, drummers and approximately 100 Elephants.

Overnight in The Kandy House, Kandy  (Deluxe Room)

DAY 05
After breakfast proceed to Hatton, the beautiful hill country of Sri Lanka.  
The tea trails bungalow is situated on a tea plantation bordering the Maskeliya reservoir. Spend the day exploring the tea plantation; make the daily journey of a tea plucker through a tea field, as she harvests the ‘two leaves and bud’. Visit the tea factory where the leaves are transformed into the perfect cup of tea. This is also a great place for birding, start early morning for the best sightings.    
Arrive at your hotel and relax or explore the surroundings.

Overnight Ceylon Tea Trails, Hatton (Luxury Room)

DAY 06 

Spend this day at leisure exploring the beautiful surroundings and learn about the perfect cup of tea and experience life in a working tea estate in the style of a Colonial English planter.

Optional:  activities you can do while at Tea Trails would be as follows. ( per person rates )

  1. Scenic Walks, Treks & Hikes

Half Day Guide Fee $25, Full Day $45, irrespective of group size

  1. Kayaking with Guide

 Half an hour $15 per kayak, one hour $25 per kayak

 Castlereagh to Summerville for lunch or afternoon cream tea, 20minutes each way, $25 per kayak

 Norwood to Castlereagh bike ride (1.5 hours/12km) and thenkayaking to an island for picnic lunch (40 minutes/1.4km), $50 perperson

 2 hours kayaking along the reservoir, 4km with guide. Travel fromSummerville or Castlereagh to Norwood for lunch or afternoon cream tea. Or start from Norwood and dine at Castlereagh orSummerville. Return to your bungalow by Tea Trails vehicle. $60 per  person.

  1. Mountain Biking

Bikes no charge

Half day Guide Fee $25, full day $45, irrespective of group size.

  1. Adam’s Peak climb with Guide

First guest $90, each additional guest $25.

Overnight Ceylon Tea Trails, Hatton (Luxury Room)

DAY 07

After breakfast proceed to the South coast of the island for a luxurious 3 night beach stay at Cape Weligama, a one of a kind property. Enjoy the Sun , Sea and Sand.

Overnight in Cape Weligama. (4 Villas / Master Room 130)

( Cape Weligama is a luxury resort located on the south coast of Sri Lanka about 30 minutes from historic Galle. With jaw-dropping views over the Indian Ocean, Cape Weligama has quickly established itself as one of the most exclusive hotels in Sri Lanka.)

DAY 08

Leave early morning for a Whale watching excursion in Mirissa. 

Between the months of November and April you'll have an early start to take a whale watching excursion off the coast of Mirissa to track the incredible Blue Whale - the largest animal that has ever lived and now known to be found seasonally in Sri Lanka's rich marine habitat. Commercial whale watching is only in its infancy here so this is an experience few have had before

Return back to your hotel and spend the rest of the day at leisure.

Overnight in Cape Weligama. . (4 Villas / Master Room 130)

DAY 09

After breakfast transfer to Colombo. Enroute you visit the turtle hatchery in Kosgoda.

Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery - Of the eight varieties of turtle know to exist, Sri Lanka has five and all are endangered.  They are the Leathery Turtle; the Clove-Backed Ridly Turtle. The Loggerhead Turtle, the Hawksbill Turtle and the Green Turtle.  Although it is illegal to do so, turtles are still captured and their flesh sold in the markets, as are their eggs.  The Hawksbill is slaughtered for its beautifully patterned shell. To help save the turtle, hatcheries have sprung up along the West Coast, particularly between Bentota and Kosgoda.  Fishermen are paid to collect the eggs (laying mostly takes place between November and April) and hand them over to the hatchery staff who then bury the eggs in sand inside protective fencing designed to keep dogs and other hungry predators from digging them up.  Incubation times vary according to the type of turtle, but with Leatherbacks it is between 62 and 65 days and with the Green Turtle 48 to 52.  Many thousands of hatchlings are released every month.  A few hatcheries have been featured in publications like National Geographic & Readers Digest and this has done much to help fund the projects.

Dinner at the Gallery Café is a must. Other nice visits apart from highlights and “must see” places is Barefoot, a shop/gallery/café. A visit to a porcelain shop can also be interesting. (Rörstrand manufactured a large portion of their selection in Sri Lanka) We try to avoid the usual souvenir shops. You make plans with your guide how and what you would like to see and experience while in Colombo.

Dinner at Gallery Café

Like many capital cities in developing countries Colombo 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. A 100-year-old clock tower and several British built, colonial buildings are still to be seen in the city.  The Pettah bazaar – where one can shop for bargains, a Hindu and a Buddhist temple, residential areas where you find the stately homes of the affluent, the Colombo museum, the Bandaranaike memorial international conference hall – an outright gift to Sri Lanka from the people’s republic of china, the new parliament in Sri Jayewardenepura and the folk art center are some of the places of interest that one can visit to.

Overnight in Galle Face Hotel, Colombo – 4 star colonial property (Landmark Sea View Room)

DAY 10  –

Relax and enjoy the surroundings.

Free day for Optional activates and explore the area.

Optional activities –

  • SubaGaman Tuk Tuk tours. (A tuk tuk experience around Colombo) ( Optional )  

Colombo by Jeep experience.  ( Optional )  

Colombo by Jeep will be the best option for people who are willing to compromise comfort to try out this new concept of touring to discover the indescribable naturalistic, unseen and untouched raw beauty of Sri Lanka.

Colombo by Jeep off-road adventure trips will bring together outdoors, nature, wildlife and down to earth people who prefer something different to common sightseeing in an antique World War 2 Jeep with fantastic tours fit every budget that takes one to other worlds, in terms of nature and adventure on private trails.

Overnight in Galle Face Hotel, Colombo – 4 star colonial property (Landmark Sea View Room)

DAY 11

Depature Transfer to the Airport

ID: LK-2-03-002