Sri Lanka 12 Day Tour
DAY 1 AIRPORT - COLOMBO
Meet and assist on arrival at Airport by representative.
Transfer from Airport to Colombo - Visit Colombo city
Drive along the clean streets edging the crystal white Race Course - horse racing hub in 1893 & World War II airstrip - furnished today with lavish clothing, food & tea boutiques. Meanwhile, ride to Pettah & tune into the Floating Market - an offbeat shopping experience - or feel the buzz surrounding the upcoming inspiration, the Colombo Port City - an offshore city - featuring parks, commercial complexes & even an F1 track! Head along Bauddhaloka Mawatha towards 'Arcade' facing a historic waypost, the Independence Square. Every designer boutique, top-notch cuisine outlet and even the 'walk-over fish tank', have revamped this colonial masterpiece into one of the trendiest shopping and hangout zones in Sri Lanka. Have a chilled beer at the Dutch Hospital while gazing through fancy windows showcasing best fashion, jewellery & handicraft brands. Smell the scent of incense while listening to the chiming bells of Gangarama temple.
Or, jazz up to Colombo's night life spiced by night clubs & casinos that borderline its bustle. If you're lucky, head into an exhibition at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) before swaying your head to an opera or play at Nelum Pokuna that should just drive your day into perfection!
Overnight Stay at Ozo Colombo
DAY 2 COLOMBO - PINNAWALA - SIGIRIYA
Breakfast at Ozo Colombo and transfer to Sigiriya
En route visit Pinnawala elephant orphanage.
As you enter the 25 acre coconut property, do not be surprised to witness baby elephants being bottle fed or moving around freely causing absolutely no harm to anyone. It is rightly a sincere sight to observe how these gentle giants - orphaned and sometimes three-legged - are taken care of since 1975 at Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. Up to date, over 20 calves have been born here, and it is surprising to hear that some of its inmates have even seen their grandchildren during the past few decades! Watch as they feed at 9:15 am, 1:15 pm & 5:00 pm and take a river bath twice a day at 10:00 am & 2:00 pm respectively for an experience that could never be felt anywhere else on earth!
Check in in the hotel
Transfer to Sigiriya - Evening climb Sigiriya rock fortress
The 5th century rock citadel of King Kasyapa and World Heritage Site - Sigiriya - doesn't only boast of ancient Sri Lankan engineering & urban planning supremacy but also acclaims to be one of the finest monuments of art & culture.
Step through the gigantic 'Lion Paws' - overlooking the symmetrical royal gardens below - to comprehend the absolute splendour that once dominated this rock fortress. Surrounded by ramparts & moats the Lion Rock - resembling the mythological 'City of Gods' - is coated by frescoes that relate to Gupta style paintings found in Ajanta caves of India. Walk in the shade of an eminent 'mirror wall' embracing the Western face of Sigiriya representing an artistic hundred metres laminated with graffiti. Wander into the well-fabricated museum downstairs for an epic journey of yesteryears to realise how the citadel floated above citizens with the castle, ponds and irrigation systems that pumped water right onto its summit with an ingenious hydraulic system describing a colossal masterpiece of the great king which remained a wonder in Asia for centuries.
Transfer from Sigiriya to Dambulla
Overnight Stay at Amaya Lake
DAY 3 SIGIRIYA - POLONNARUWA - MINNERIYA - SIGIRIYA
Breakfast at Amaya Lake and transfer to do the activities and sight seeing
Transfer from hotel to Habarana for the village visit.
Village visit where you will then be taken on a bullock cart ride through a banana plantation where you could taste and savour the ripe bananas there. You could opt to take a ride to cross a scenic reservoir in an “oruwa ” (traditional boat) to visit a Chena cultivation. This experience will give an opportunity to meet and interact with the villagers in the area to know about how they go about with their farming and cultivation. You may even opt to help them in some of their daily activities such as farming and cooking.
Transfer from Habarana to Polonnaruwa - Visit Polonnaruwa historical city
Rising with the decline of Anuradhapura, the city of Polonnaruwa - medieval capital & crown jewel of King Parakramabahu I - remains superior proof of ancient culture & heritage blended with religious beliefs.
Walk across its scattered walls of the World Heritage Site - blessed by stupas, resting Buddha statues, irrigation canals and fantastically carved Hindu sculptures - while observing the relic house - Watadage - which boasts of beautiful stone carvings. Take a close glance and you will realize a subtle Hindu influence on architecture and statues found in Polonnaruwa. Or sit by the side of Galviharaya and observe the absolute beauty gushing out of every bend of its huge Buddhist statues. Nissankamalla Council Chamber is however, a head-spinning beauty to just sit back and observe with its swaying pillars reminding the aesthetics of a powerful kingdom which rests beside Parakrama Samudraya - sea of Parakramabahu & masterpiece of irrigation!
Transfer from Polonnaruwa to Minneriya - Evening visit Minneriya National park
If you're up for a serious rumble in the jungle, then Minneriya is your Colosseum! Spreading over 8800 hectares, this is a sanctuary for elephants. Minneriya is home to herds of deer and ample birdlife, but its spotlight remains between swaying trunks & flapping ears. Park your jeep on the bank of the reservoir and switch off its engine. Watch carefully as herds of elephants - one by one - roll on to the grass-covered banks, to feed on tender shoots. In fact, this is the largest elephant gathering in the world - over 300 at a time - which has garnished the park to become a magnet for wildlife enthusiasts across the globe.
Transfer from Minneriya to Dambulla
Overnight Stay at Amaya Lake
DAY 4 SIGIRIYA - ANURADHAPURA - SIGIRIYA
Breakfast at Amaya Lake and transfer to Anuradhapura
Transfer to Anuradhapura - Visit Anuradhapura sight seeing
Commanding a rich Sri Lankan heritage, Anuradhapura - one of the greatest and oldest civilizations in the world starring 113 kings & spanning over 1300 years in its peak - avows of being the greatest city of ancient Sri Lanka following its reign as the first capital. The sapphire of its crown is certainly the Sri Maha Bodhi - the sacred Bo sapling extracted from the tree under which Lord Buddha attained enlightenment - standing more than 2200 years in its pride. Stroll through the sacred trails of the venerated city to adore the legacy that interweaves Ruwanweliseya - the gigantic dagoba resting alongside the Basawakkulama Tank - shading the Samadhi Buddha Statue & Isurumuniya Rock Temple that empower the culture, heritage and supremacy of arguably the strongest kingdom in Sri Lankan history.
Transfer from Anuradhapura to Dambulla
Overnight Stay at Amaya Lake
DAY 5 DAMBULLA - MATALE - KANDY
Breakfast at Amaya Lake and transfer to Kandy
Morning visit Dambulla cave temple
In the city of Dambulla lies a hub which has been treasured by many kings since the 1st century B.C. Today, an icon in the face of Sri Lanka, Dambulla Rock Temple houses some of the most unique drawings in magnificently constructed 5 cave temples flanking the golden temple of Dambulla. Observe how exquisitely cave paintings are done along walls that shelter 150 statues of Lord Buddha. As you enter the retreat, look straight up to the gigantic Buddha statue glittering in gold over a land, which today houses an important junction in the country's economic and cultural uplifting.
Transfer from Dambulla to Matale - Visit a spice garden and enjoy a cup of herbal tea at the premise. An agricultural zone in the Central Province, Matale seldom drops off the maps due to its remarkable contribution through flagship crops of the island extending from tea, rubber & vegetables to spices.
Spearheading the Rebellion back in 1848, Matale today takes immense pride in its story woven around spices. Stop by the side of a spice garden - into which you will be most welcome - and observe the therapeutic values of spices & processes over a refreshing cup of herbal tea! Or spend some time idling on the streets if you mean a real town adventure filled with voices and colors.
Transfer from Matale to Kandy - Visit Kandy city
Last ruled by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe - before it was brought under the British rule in 1815, Kandy - the World Heritage Site & last royal capital of Sri Lankan kings - crafts an array of culture, history and heritage in the minds of visitors across the globe. Experience an ancient Kandyan legacy engraved around its crown jewel, the temple of the sacred tooth relic of Lord Buddha. A stroll across this small lakeside town - cradled among the misty hills - will feature the Kandy City Centre - bundled with latest and world class brands, bazaar, an arts & crafts centre, as well as a gem museum & lapidary.walk in color as you glide through fresh fruits and vegetables in the Kandy market. Fine tune your evening by stepping to the beat of traditional music & drumming amplified by a cultural show enhancing the rich and vibrant culture of the Wonder of Asia, Sri Lanka.
Overnight Stay at Earl's Regent Hotel
DAY 6 KANDY - PERADENIYA - KANDY
Breakfast at Earl'S Regent Hotel and transfer to Kandy
Visit Peradeniya royal botanical garden
First developed as a pleasure garden under royalty and later harmonized by the British, the Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya - today bundled with the most welcoming facilities located just 4 miles off Kandy - is a flourishing national asset in the Wonder of Asia.
Walk into this 147 acre bliss of an experience, passing well-tended lawns, pavilions & an octagon conservatory to be greeted by the vast expanse of a magnificently landscaped lush green turf which will encourage you for an exhilarating break. Towards the north of the entrance rests a cafeteria that one might come across before stepping into some of the highlights - the orchid house & giant Javan fig tree - of this place which overflow in grace.
Transfer from Peradeniya to Kandy - Visit Kandy city and in the evening witness the Kandy cultural show
Overnight Stay at Earl'S Regent Hotel
DAY 7 PERADENIYA - NUWARA ELIYA (TRAIN RIDE)
Breakfast at Earl'S Regent Hotel and transfer to Nuwara Eliya by train
Visit a tea plantation site in Nuwara Eliya
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.
Transfer from Tea Plantation to Nuwara Eliya - Visit Nuwara Eliya city
Misty steep roads, twisting through lush green blankets of tea bushes in a cool climate, remind visitors that they are within the range of the renowned British colonial retreat, Nuwara Eliya. Augmented by an English countryside atmosphere, the city of light - once governed by English & Scottish planters - is still studded with colonial bungalows, hedgerows & one of the finest 18-hole golf courses in the world. A hike through the green grass and red-brick walls should present breathtaking views of a buzzing countryside hamlet.
Drive through green valleys of the hill country pierced by endless waterfalls & dotted by tea pluckers draped in bright-colored saris. Or rent a bike for a gentle ride along the banks splashed by the waters of Lake Gregory.
Overnight Stay at Grand Hotel
DAY 8 NUWARA ELIYA - NUWARA ELIYA
Breakfast at the hotel and leisure day in Nuwara Eliya
Overnight Stay at Grand Hotel
DAY 9 NUWARA ELIYA – ELLA - KATARAGAMA - YALA
Breakfast at Grand Hotel and transfer to Yala via Ella
Transfer from Nuwara Eliya 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. Though there are just a handful of guesthouses and hotels here, Sri Lankan’s warm and friendly signature hospitality is more than available at every place.
Transfer from Ella to Kataragama - Visit the sacred city of Kataragama
Overnight Stay at The Safari
DAY 10 YALA - YALA
Breakfast at The Safari and transfer to Yala national park for safari - (Morning and evening safari)
Spreading into a vast 1259 Km2 Yala - with its glory spinning around vast grasslands, shrubs, tanks and dunes - rightfully is the heartland of wildlife in Sri Lanka. As your jeep rumbles 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.
Overnight Stay at The Safari
DAY 11 YALA - GALLE - HIKKADUWA
Breakfast at The Safari and transfer to Galle
Visit Galle city and the sight seeing's
Galle, the epic Southern capital, is the intersection where classic Dutch architecture meets a tropical setting creating a vivid atmosphere in beauty. Walk the Dutch-haunted streets listening to the creaks of wooden saloon doors and observe how European architecture mingles with South Asian traditions today flooding cultural enthusiasts on a global scale. Its original ramparts and bastions preserved up to date showcase evidences of a heritage preserved for more than 3 1/2 centuries. Walk clockwise within the fort to observe the 'old gate' carrying the British coat of arms. Flanking the old gate is the Zwart bastion - the oldest of all - and the lighthouse standing 18 feet in its glory next to the Point Utretcht Bastion. This Dutch bliss is painted with streets that spread in a rectangular grid pattern pierced with houses carrying Dutch colonial style verandas. Hop into the Dutch Hospital Shopping Complex to be mesmerized by an array of souvenir selections. However, its hallmark stands a reality where the Dutch fort remains a working community with its usual buzz of administrative offices, court complex, commercial buildings, churches and Southern folks frequenting its streets bracing the air of the Elysium of architecture, Galle!
Transfer from Galle to Hikkaduwa
Overnight Stay at Hikka Tranz By Cinnamon
DAY 12 HIKKADUWA - AIRPORT
Breakfast at Hikka Tranz By Cinnamon
Transfer from Hikkaduwa to Airport
END OF THE SERVICE