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Highlights of Sri Lanka
Highlights of Sri Lanka
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Highlights: Dambulla- Sigiriya - Hiriwaduna - Kandy - Pinnawala - Nuwara Eliya - Tissamaharama - Yala - Galle - Bentota


Other departures: London Heathrow - £1825, Edinburgh - £1815, Manchester - £1785


Sri Lanka is a wonderful tourist destination that has always lured tourists from all over the world with its rich heritage, enticing beaches, diverse wildlife, and exquisite landscapes. The country is miraculous owing to the fact that it presents an abundance of physical diversity in a compact bundle. First-time visitors are easily captivated by the pearl-shaped island's uniqueness.


Itinerary:


Day 1: Dambulla
Arrival at the Colombo International Airport where Clients will be met by our staff and English Speaking Chauffeur Guide.
Thereafter, proceed to Dambulla Visit the Dambulla Cave Temple.DAMBULLA - the greatest of Sri Lanka's cave temples, dates from the first century BC and contains over 150 Buddha images, subtly lit for maximum atmosphere. Actually a series of five caves, the temple is called Raja Maha Vihara by locals, but known simply as Dambulla to visitors. The entrance is marked by a large white dagoba along a long sloping rock face, from where there are views of the rock fortress of Sigiriya, about 20km away. Most of the caves were carved out by hand and some of the amazing array of Buddha statues are still attached to the wall.


Overnight stay at a hotel in the Cultural Triangle.


Day 2: Sigiriya
After breakfast leave for an excursion to the Rock Fortress of Sigiriya.
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.After descending from Sigiriya, the clients will enjoy King Coconut organized at the foot of the rock.excursion to Polonnaruwa.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 harbor. 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 Buddhist 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.


Overnight stay at a hotel in the Cultural Triangle.


Day 3: Hiriwaduna 
After breakfast drive to Hiriwaduna for a typical Sri Lankan Village experience. This is a typical village experience with approximately 03 ½ to 04 KM of walking and the remainder in a Country Boat & Bullock Cart. While in Hiriwaduna you will visit a local school (will be in operation from Monday to Friday only), ending the tour sipping a cup of tea at the Wattle & Daub cottage of a local farmer.Hiriwaduna - begin with a walk along a shaded, gravel path that leads onto the bund of the reservoir, which is a stunning mixture of contrasts. The ashen trunks of long dead trees rise up starkly against the lush, green vegetation of the wetlands in the background, their skeletal shapes the perfect spots for roosting egrets. Thereafter, cross the overspill and make your way toward the sandy embankment, which is your pick up point for an easy crossing by Oruwa (local boat). Reach the far shore and then make your way along a narrow, shady path that cuts through a banana plantation until you reach a clearing in which stands a house of wattle and daub, the home of a farmer and his family. Enjoy a cool, sweet drink of king coconut before you begin the next phase of your walk, which will lead you through vegetable plots and into scrub forest, where a waiting bullock cart will transport you through jungle and paddy fields. Lie back and enjoy the flashes of blue sky through the cover of the trees as the carter expertly guides his animals.


Day 3 : Kandy
Afterwards, proceed to Kandy, en route visiting the Matale Spice Garden. 
Visit a Spice Garden to see spices growing in their natural habitat. Learn about spices and their use in Sri Lankan cuisine. 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 hardened streets if you mean a real town adventure filled with voices and colors.time idling on the hardened streets if you mean a real town adventure filled with voices and colors.
Check in to the hotel in Kandy.


Overnight stay at a hotel in Kandy.


Day 4: Pinnawala 
After breakfast proceed to Pinnawala to visit the Elephant Orphanage.Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage – set amongst the verdant hills of Kegalle is a unique orphanage, where the tiny tots weigh 60 kg or more. This is the Pinnewela Elephant Orphanage, the world's first and only elephant orphanage established to feed, nurse and house young elephants lost or abandoned by their mothers. Other occupants are elephants displaced from their natural environs by development projects or those found wounded. Visitors could see the baby elephants being fed milk from gigantic feeding bottles or bathed in the river which flows nearby – an unforgettable sight! Established in 1975, by the Wildlife Department and National Zoological gardens which subsequently led to a breeding programme through which more than twenty five elephants have been born since 1984.Return to Kandy and carry out a panoramic city tour of the Kandy city by tuk tuk (Three wheel scooter Taxis) driven by local drivers, in which you can take two clients each; followed by free time for shopping in the city. Late evening visit the Kandy Temple and attend the Cultural Show in the evening.KANDY - Sri Lanka's hill capital, stronghold of the Sinhala Kings, is our most beautiful town. The focal point of the town is, without doubt, the golden roofed Dalada Maligawa. The highlight of the year is the Esala Perahera, when a replica of the relic casket is taken in procession accompanied by exotically costumed dancers, drummers and elephants during ten glittering nights in July/August. Visit Kalapuraya in the beautiful Dumbara valley. There are many shrines and temples, where you will see rare paintings, frescoes, wood and stone carvings.


Overnight stay at a hotel in Kandy.


Day 5: Nuwara Eliya
After breakfast proceed to Nuwara Eliya, visiting a Tea Plantation & Tea Factory along the way.Here the clients will be taken through the process on how the raw green leaf is turned into its find product which is the “dust”.Afterwards proceed to Nuwara Eliya for a city tour. Admire the majestic Ramboda Falls along the way.NUWARA ELIYA - is the heart of Sri Lankan hill country. It is the home of the famous Ceylon Tea and the rolling mountains are a carpet of velvety green tea plantations, interspersed with gushing streams and tumbling waterfalls. The salubrious climate, misty glens and the decidedly British character make Nuwara Eliya a must on any Sri Lankan travel itinerary.


Overnight stay at a hotel Nuwara Eliya.


Day 6: Tissamaharama
After breakfast proceed to Bentota for the beach stay.admiring the Ella Gap & Rawana waterfall along the way.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 Lankans warm and friendly signature hospitality is more than available at every place.Evening visit the Katharagama Temple & attend the beautiful ancient pooja ceremony.Walking on blazing fire, drums clattering away flanking the whistling music of brass flutes and men with their cheeks, arms and chest covered in ash chanting 'Haro-Hara' echoing the sky are common sights at the holy land of God Skanda, Kataragama. As the mysteries that surround this 'land of vows' float in clouds of incense, people irrespective of their religion flock together to venerate this pilgrimage site. However, the town becomes busiest during the months of July-August as the Kataragama Festival begins flashing the streets with swiftly moving fire dancers, exotic 'Kawadi' dancers as well as majestically caparisoned elephants swaying their heads from side to side, as exotic drums are pounded away side by side.


Overnight stay at a hotel in Tissamaharama.


Day7: Yala
Early morning proceed to Yala.Carry out a 4x4 Jeep Safari at the Yala National Park.
Situated 309 km. south of Colombo, Yala is approximately 1,259 sq.km. inextent and is located in the south eastern corner of the island. Its northern boundaries border on the Lahugala Elephant Sanctuary and it has the added bonus of a scenic ocean frontage. The terrain is varied flat plains alternating with rocky outcrops. The vegetation ranges from open parkland to dense jungle. Water holes, small lakes, lagoons and streams provide water for the animals and birds. The specialty here is the large numbers of elephants.Return to the hotel for breakfast and relax after the long and tiring safari.Rest of the day at leisure.


Overnight stay at a hotel in Tissamaharama.


Day 8: Galle
GALLE – said to be the famous Tarshish of the Bible where King Solomon obtained gems and spices, this “Living” UNESCO World Heritage Site is the port where the Portuguese first landed in Sri Lanka in 1505. Captured and fortified by the Dutch who ruled maritime Sri Lanka in the 17th and 18th centuries, the city still retains the air of old Holland. Within the well preserved 90 acre fort and ramparts built in 1663 are old Dutch churches and monuments with armorial bearings, an imposing crested and monogrammed gateway dated 1669, many well preserved old Dutch houses and narrow alleys still bearing Dutch names. The New Oriental Hotel, built for a Dutch governor in 1684, a colonial gem now converted to the internationally renowned Amangalle Hotel and several other excellent boutique hotels are testimony to the importance of this location.Afterwards proceed to Bentota for the beach stay.Check in to the beach hotel.P.M. at leisure.


Overnight stay at a beach hotel in Bentota.


Day 9: Bentota
Breakfast at the hotel.Full day at leisure at the beach. (No Guide & No Vehicle available)Bentota is famed as the prime beach resort of the south-western and southern coastal belts of Sri Lanka. South of the city of Colombo, the city of Kalutara with its fine beach is the gateway to south western and southern bay beaches. Kalutara is the next popular beach after Bentota. The Beruwala Bay Beach that is found just before reaching Aluthgama at the Bentota Bridge and Bentota Bay Beach just over the bridge are the most popular twin beaches along the coast. The coast towards the further South too is replete with lovely topical beaches making it ideal for a perfect beach holiday with the sun and sand.


Overnight stay at a beach hotel in Bentota.


Day 9: Bentota/ Colombo Airport 
After breakfast proceed to the Airport for departure.



Offer Includes

  • Flights from Birmingham with Qatar Airways
  • Airport taxes
  • 8 nights accommodation in Double Sharing Room
  • Transport in Air conditioned vehicle along with English speaking guide
  • Entrance fees as per the program
  • Welcome drink and refreshing towels at the hotels
  • 15% V.A.T and 1% TDL tax

Meal Plans

  • Bed & Breakfast