Few islands in the world offer the diversity that exists in Sri Lanka, from ancient cities to rich religious festivals, colonial memories to rolling tea plantations and some of the best beaches in the India Ocean. Sri Lanka intoxicates its visitors with a potpourri of cultures, religions, races, customs and sheer natural beauty. You will stay in boutique accommodation on this 4 Star journey with exclusive visits to really see classic and idyllic Sri Lanka.
Day 1: Arrive Colombo > Kotugoda
On arrival into Colombo you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
Day 2: Kotugoda > Dambulla > Thirappane
Travel northeast on back roads through towns and coconut and pineapple plantations. Visit Dambulla Cave Temples dating back to the 1st century BC.
Day 3: Sigiriya > Polonnaruwa > Minneriya
Visit Sirigiya (Lion Rock), an ancient rock fortress and palace. Continue to Polonnaruwa and time permitting; join a 4WD safari in Minneriya National Park.
Day 4: Anuradhapura > Thirappane
Visit the first royal capital of Sri Lanka, which flourished for 1300 years. The site covers several kilometres with its palaces, monasteries and monuments.
Day 5: Thirappane > Kandy
En route to Kandy visit a spice garden and enjoy lunch at the private estate of batik artist Ena da Silva. Later enjoy the moonrise over Hunas Mountain at the artist’s Rajhu’s studio set on a beautiful hilltop.
Day 6: Kandy
Visit the Botanical Gardens with a professor of Botany this morning and later visit eclectic Kandy Town and the Temple of the Tooth.
Day 7: Kandy > Tea Trails
Take a train ride from Kandy to the heart of tea country. Travel from jungle to cloud forest through extraordinary scenery.
Day 8: Tea Trails
Visit a tea plantation with a resident planter. This afternoon choose to visit some of the villages in the valley to see their homes, schools and markets.
Day 9: Tea Trails > Galle
Travel to Galle stopping at the site of filming of ‘The Bridge Over the River Kwai’.
Day 10: Galle
Visit Galle Fort, a vibrant and bustling area with a Mediterranean feel. Galle Fort Mosque, lighthouse, churches and the museum should be on your list of must-sees.
Day 11: Galle > Colombo
Visit Lunuganga, and the house designed and owned by Geoffrey Bawa. It was his tropical vision of an Italian Renaissance garden in Sri Lanka. Continue to Colombo for an afternoon city walk through a myriad of buildings that date from the 17th century.
Day 12: Depart Colombo
Transfer to the airport.