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You may cover most parts of Sri Lanka within two weeks and this sample tour will provide you with a rough idea, yet more insights await for your inspiration.
When you arrive in Colombo International Airport, you will meet up with your private chauffeur and our local representive. Drive to Negombo and check in your hotel.
Despite the somehow heartbreaking name, Elephant Orphanage is now a lovely home to wild elephants that were found wandering in the forests across Sri Lanka. Today, after breakfast at your hotel, your chauffeur tour guide will take you to this site, in hopes of encounter with these lovely creatures. By the bank of the Maha Oya River, you will see how the elephants are bathed and fed by the experienced mahots.
At the park, now there are over 100 elephants living at this sanctuary from 3 generations. Some of the new-bred elephants are bottle fed while most of them live in wild with daily care offered by the government.
After a simple lunch, you will go on a drive of 4 hours to Sigiriya. Make some stops en route to explore the rural side. Check in hotel in Sigiriya before the evening.
Surround by a massive collection of gardens, which includes namely the terrace garden, the boulder garden, the miniature garden and the water gardens, Lion Rock of Sigiriya is definetely a highlight of the northern part of Sri Lanka.
Take a climb up the rock and get great view of the surrounding. After a simple lunch, we will head to Polonnaruwa, which takes one hour and a half by car.
Inscribed as a World Heritage Site in 1982, Polonnaruwa Ancient City was built in the 11th century AD as King Vijayabahu declared capital in this locale. Sites of the ancient city indicate the influence of Buddhism and the King's power; the Royal Palace, Gal Vihara Temple, Thuparamaya Stupa, Statue of King Parakramabahu I and several ruins are scattered around the massive compound.
Enjoy the sweetness of a fresh coconut when the visit is completed. Transfer back to your hotel in Sigiriya before dusk.
After breakfast, we hit the road to Dambulla.
A visit at Dumbulla Cave Temple requires a light climb of 10 minutes to get inside the cavern. Once inside, it's easily to be overwhelmed by the beautiful murals. Visit at Daumbulla Cave Temple will be completed before noon and you will be taken to Kandy, 2 hours and a half hours away.
On the way to Kandy, we will stop at a spice garden in Matale and learn about the local spices. Take a light cooking class with the local chef and enjoy the bounty at the spice garden. You will reach Kandy before dusk. Check in hotel and have a good night's sleep.
nce an ancient capital, Kandy boasts for both natural beauty and rich history. To get a preview of the city, you will start the day with a visit to National Museum Kandy, showcasing important relics dating back to the British Colonial era. The museum building itself used to be the living ground for the royal families and its architectural features decipt the aesthetic values of ancient Kandyan Kingdom.
Next foot takes you into the massive site of Temple of the Tooth. Not just in name only, this extensive temple complex was built to house the tooth relics of the Lord Buddha, which, according to the tradition, will help whoever owns it ascend the throne.
After lunch, take a stroll around Kandy Lake after lunch, and you will walk into the Royal Palace of Kandy. As early as in the 14th century, the palace was home to King Vickramabahu III (1357-1374) and the last king lived here was King Sri Vikrama Rajasinha from 1780 until he was overthrown by the British in 1815.
After breakfast, take the fresh air in Royal Botanic Garden, just 6km outside Kandy in Peradeniya. The first king who took residence in Royal Palace of Kandy, King Wickramabahu III also built up this garden when he ascended the throne in 1371. The garden is devided into different themed sections, and today you will visit the Orchid House, Palm Avenue and Spice Garden. Have a simple lunch inside the garden.
Transfer to Peradeniya Train Station and take the Expo Train to Nanu Oya Train Station of Nuwara Eliya, which is known as Tea Country Train Ride. Sri Lanka's railway network was initially built in 1864 with very little upgrate ever since, thus the railroad is narrow and the train is traveling at a relatively low speed less than 100km/h. That said the ride is very much enjoyable as you can see the landscape change dramatically from plains to mountains laced with lush tea planatation, forest swaying in breeze to rushing waterfalls making big sound, as well as lovely local people.
The train will arrive at Nuwa Oya Train Station in the afternoon and you will be taken to your hotel by your private chauffeur guide. Driving time from Nanu Oya Train Station to your hotel in Nuwara Eliya is about 40 minutes.
Full recharge! Because we are going on an adventure today!
After breakfast, we will be driving to Horton Plains National Park, which is about 1 hour away from Nuwara Eliya. We will start today early in hopes for you to see the famed World's End before the morning mist comes up. The entire trail is about 9km and takes about 4 hours to cover involving with uphill trekking for 1 hour, plain land and grassland trekking about 2 hours and some stops en route.
Being the biggest attractions of the park, World's End, Beck's Fall and Mt. Kirigalpoththa make up a beautiful journey. As you trek through the park, you will have chances to witness wild animals, excessive landscape changes and friendly locals. Have a picnic lunch inside the park.
The trekking ends in the early afternoon and you will be on the way to Tissamaharama. Driving takes about 4 hours.
Often shortened to Tissa, the southern town Tissamaharama is an ideal and comfortable base for your adventure to Yala National Park. Kick start today with a morning safari trip by jeep in the park.
Pick up at 0500am in the morning and you will head to the entrace of the national park. Change to a jeep of 6-seat, you will drive through the jungles of Yala, in hopes to spot wildlife including Asian elephants, peacocks, leopards, deers, saltwater crocodile, hedgehogs, beers and various birds. Take a break near the Patanangalla Beach or Manik River to have your breakfast at 0830am. The drive continues till noon when your private chauffeur guide picks you up at the entrance and takes you to lunch in a nearby restaurant.
Return to your hotel for leisure time.
Today you will be on the way to Galle at the southern coast. Galle is 153km (96 miles) away from Tissamaharama and takes about 4 hours.
On the way from Tissamaharama to Galle, you will stop at Handunugoda Tea Estate. This legendary tea factory boasts for its unique product Virgin White Tea, which is completely untouched by hand and follows an ancient Chinese tea making Ritual where the best of teas were offered as a tribute to the Emperor during the Tsong and Tsang dynasties of 5th and 6th century B.C.
Lunch will be some simple local cuisine on the way and you will reach Galle in early afternoon. Check in hotel and free at leisure.
Founded by the Portuguese in 1630's and reached the height of development during the Dutch rule after the Dutch East India Company took it over from the Portugese. The town itself is fairly small and easy to get around, however, an insightful tour guide will shed interesting light on every historical building you encounter. Today you will take a walking tour in Galle to visit some of its highlights.
Take it slow and we will discover Galle Dutch Fort, Dutch Reformed Church, Martin Wickramasinghe Folk Art Museum and Community Tsunami Museum, walking you into the old days of Galle.
Leaving Galle and you are approaching to Bentota, a nice beach destination.
Enjoy some free days in the beautiful beach of Bentota.
Enjoy some free time in Bentota before getting to Colombo on a 2-hour ride.
After breakfast, your hotel will transfer you to the airport for the ongoing flight back home.
Accommodations in Sri Lanka might not be the most luxury in Asia yet their warm services make up for the somewhat dated facilities. The hotels that Asia Highlights chooses for you are of amazing value and good for comfortable stay.