Sri Lanka PRIVATE TAILOR-MADE TOURING

No less than 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites grace this intriguing country, where ancient cities and temples, serene and stunning landscapes, and a whole host of flora and fauna come together to offer a holiday experience which is rich and varied. We have picked a selection of fascinating sights to help you start planning your tailor-made tour, however, if there are particular areas you are keen to visit which are not mentioned, please talk to us so we can create a bespoke experience just for you.

For Culture

  1. Anuradhapura: The 1st capital of ancient Ceylon, Anuradhapura boasts 2 immense stupus and is best known as the site of the ‘tree of enlightenment’, said to have grown from a cutting of Buddha’s own Bo tree. Today it is still a very spiritual place and well worth a visit.
  2. Polonnaruwa: The 2nd capital of Sri Lanka and once a great garden city, visit the ruins of the Royal Palace and marvel at the Gal Viharaya, a series of 4 stone Buddhas, including a 14 metre reclining Buddha, one of the largest sculptures in South East Asia.


    Polonarruwa 4

  3. Dambulla Cave Temple: Built in the 1st Century BC, this complex of 5 caves includes the largest area of cave paintings in the world.
  4. Kandy: The last capital of the Sri Lankan kings and a World Heritage Site, Kandy is home to the revered relic of the tooth of Buddha, which is housed in an impressive temple here. It is also the place to take in a cultural show and shop for batiks, carvings and gems. 

For Landscapes

  1. Sigiriya: Rising 200 metres from the surrounding plains and dating from the 5th Century, there are many stories as to the purpose of this splendid rock monument, with most believing it was once a citadel. Affectionately known as the ‘lion rock’, due to the two immense stone paws which mark the gateway to the top, emerge on the summit to magnificent views.

    Aerial view of Sigiriya

  2. Hatton, Nuwara Eliya District: This beautiful area, steeped in emerald green tea plantations, is one of the best places to watch tea being picked by hand. There is also the opportunity to visit a tea factory and see how the famous Ceylon tea is then processed and graded.
  3. Horton Plains National Park: The undulating landscape of Horton Plains plays host to World’s End, an awesome escarpment that drops dramatically to the lowlands and offers fantastic views over the surrounding countryside. A circular hike, also taking in Baker’s Falls, is approx. 9.5 kilometres and takes around 4 hours, and be prepared to get up early for the best views.
  4. Galle: Once Sri Lanka’s main port, here you’ll find the best preserved sea fort in South Asia. Explore the defensive walls erected by the Dutch in the 17th and 18th Centuries, then head to Galle old town, like stepping back in time, to explore its maze of twisting streets.

FOR WILDLIFE AND NATURE

  1. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage: Established in 1975 to care for orphan elephants found in the jungle without their mothers, today as well as continuing to assist elephants in need, it is also a successful breeding centre and home to the largest herd of elephants in captivity in the world.

    Elephant2

  2. Yala National Park: Sri Lanka is one of the best places in the world to see leopard, and not only does Yala offer sightings of these elusive cats, it is also prime territory for bird watchers, with large flocks of migratory and indigenous birds found here, as well as elephants, deer, crocodiles and even sloth bears (May – June).
  3. Whale Watching: Sri Lanka is becoming more and more known for blue whale, and we recommend heading to Mirissa, on the south coast, between December – April for the best chance to see them.
  4. Matale’s Spice Gardens: Take a guided tour around a spice garden and learn about the healing uses of some common spices such as cinnamon, cardamom and nutmeg. See the process of how they’re grown, appreciate the wonderful aromas and try the freshly made local products.

RECOMMENDED ITINERARIES

ESSENTIAL SRI LANKA

6 Days / 5 Nights

If you don’t have much time, but want to see Sri Lanka's main highlights with a few days on the beach at the end, this is the itinerary for you.

 

  1. Day 1: Arrive into Colombo and trasnfer to The Wallawwa. Afternoon at leisure. Overnight The Wallawwa.

    The Wallawwa

  2. Day 2: Visit Dambulla Cave Temple.
    2 nights’ stay at Jetwing Vil Uyana.

    Dambulla caves

  3. Day 3: Spend the morning ascending Sigiriya, then continue to Polonnaruwa to tour its archaeological sites


    Aerial view of Sigiriya

  4. Day 4: Head to Matale and visit a spice garden, then transfer on to Kandy. This evening visit the Temple of the Tooth Relic. 2 nights’ stay at The Kandy House.

    Srilanka Tooth

  5. Day 5: Explore the Royal Botanical Gardens at Peradeniya. Transfer back to Kandy for a city tour, including Kandy lake, an arts and crafts centre and gem museum.

    Peredineyah Gardens

  6. Day 6: Morning visit to Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. Onward transfer to your chosen beach hotel.

    Elephants

5 Nights from £1,515 per person in low season and £1,795 per person in high season. All prices are based on 2 adults sharing, including breakfast, return scheduled flights, private air-conditioned transportation, an English speaking driver guide, entrance to all attractions visited and use of a lounge at Heathrow.

HERITAGE & NATURE

11 Days / 10 Nights

Discover the many impressive and unique cultural sites that Sri Lanka has to offer, together with its abundant wildlife, including Asian elephants and leopards.

  1. Day 1: Arrive into Colombo and transfer to Sigiriya. 3 nights’ stay at Jetwing Vil Uyana.

    Jetwing Vil Uyana

  2. Day 2: Explore Anuradhapura.

    Anuradhapura

  3. Day 3: Climb Sigiriya for spectacular views and visit Polonnaruwa’s ancient sights.

    Sigiriya

  4. Day 4: Visit Dambulla Cave Temple and a spice garden in Matale. Continue to Kandy. 2 nights’ stay at The Kandy House.

    Dambulla caves

  5. Day 5: Meet the gentle giants of Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage.

    Elephants

  6. Day 6: Drive through hill country and visit a tea plantation. 2 nights’ stay at Jetwing Warwick Gardens.

    Picking tea

  7. Day 7: Spend the morning at Horton Plains National Park hiking to World’s End. Afternoon at leisure.

    Mountain view

  8. Day 8: Take a long but scenic drive to Yala National Park, stopping at Buduruwagala, a 10th Century Buddhist temple, en-route. 2 nights’ stay at Cinnamon Wild Yala.

    Cinnamon Wild Yala

  9. Day 9: Early morning and late afternoon game drives in Yala National Park.

    Leopard

  10. Day 10: Drive to Galle, then enjoy an evening city tour. Overnight at Jetwing Lighthouse.

    Locals in Galle

  11. Day 11: Transfer to your chosen beach hotel or Colombo airport.

10 Nights from £2,299 per person in low season and £2,795 per person in high season. All prices are based on 2 adults sharing, including breakfast, return scheduled flights, private air-conditioned transportation, an English speaking driver guide, entrance to all attractions visited and use of a lounge at Heathrow.

SERENE SRI LANKA

8 Days / 7 Nights


Let us introduce you to Sri Lanka’s wide-ranging and fascinating appeal, from mist-covered tea plantations to the gentle giants of Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage.

 

  1. Day 1: Arrive into Colombo, afternoon at leisure. Overnight The Wallawwa.

    The Wallawwa


  2. Day 2: Visit Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. 2 nights' stay at Jetwing Vil Uyana.

    Jetwing Vil Uyana

  3. Day 3: Explore Sigiriya, a 5th Century rock fortress, then drive on to Polonnoruwa to explore the ruins of this once great garden city.

    Polonnaruwa

  4. Day 4: View Dambulla Cave Temple’s renowned paintings and sculptures, then head to Matale and take a walk through a spice garden. Continue to Kandy. 2 nights' stay at The Kandy House.

    Spices
  5. Day 5: Tour Kandy, and in the evening visit the Temple of the Tooth Relic.

    Temple of the Tooth Relic

  6. Day 6: Take a scenic drive through hill country to Hatton. Afternoon at leisure. 2 nights’ stay at Ceylon Tea Trails.

    Picking tea

  7. Day 7: See the whole tea making process, from the fields, to the factory, to the tasting. Afternoon at leisure.

    Ceylon Tea Trails

  8. Day 8: Transfer to your chosen beach hotel.

7 Nights from £2,049 per person in low season and £2,489 per person in high season. Prices based on 2 adults sharing, including breakfast, 2 lunches, 2 dinners and drinks while at Ceylon Tea Trails on Days 6 and 7, return scheduled flights, private air-conditioned transportation, an English speaking driver guide, entrance fees to all attractions visited and use of a lounge at Heathrow.

WHERE TO STAY

CEYLON TEA TRAILS,HATTON
Sri Lanka

South of Hatton in the Ceylon tea region, this resort consists of 20 elegant rooms and suites, set within 4 luxurious bungalows, which are scattered around a picturesque valley. Each bungalow is unique, and we recommend Castlereigh Bungalow, surrounded by trees and overlooking the lake, for its timeless colonial elegance, butler service and fine cuisine.


From £189 per person per night, based on 2 adults sharing a Luxury Room on All-Inclusive.

CINNAMON WILD YALA
Sri Lanka

On the boundary of Yala National Park, this rustic and eco-friendly game lodge is the ideal base for wildlife drives in search of leopard, elephants, crocodiles and bears. Chalets are simply furnished, but with modern amenities, and offer either a terrace or balcony overlooking the surrounding jungle or Indian Ocean.


From £65 per person per night, based on 2 adults sharing a Jungle Chalet including breakfast.

JETWING VIL UYANA, SIGIRIYA
Sri Lanka

Set in its own nature reserve, with breathtaking views of the magnificent Sigiriya, Vil Uyana is a haven for wildlife and a bird watcher’s paradise. 30 individual bungalows, dotted around a central lake, are set in four different habitats, each offering a unique experience.


From £105 per person per night, based on 2 adults sharing a Paddy Dwelling including breakfast.

THE KANDY HOUSE, KANDY
Sri Lanka

This beautifully restored manor house sits in a lush garden setting, only a short distance from Kandy. Its 9 luxury rooms, individually decorated with antique furniture, retain the atmosphere of a private country home, and provide a serene haven after a busy day of sightseeing.


From £95 per person per night, based on 2 adults sharing a Deluxe Room including breakfast.

THE WALLAWWA, KOTUGODA
Sri Lanka

Set within 3 acres of beautiful gardens, this striking colonial manor house has an authentic yet contemporary style and provides 14 refined and tranquil bedrooms and a heavenly spa. Only 30 minutes from Colombo airport, it is the perfect start or end to a cultural tour of the island.


From £65
per person per night, based on 2 adults sharing a Wallawwa Room including breakfast.

 

Getting There

Flying time from the UK is approximately 11 hours 30 minutes direct,12 hours via Doha, Qatar, 13 hours via Malé, Maldives and 13 hours 25 minutes via Dubai. 

Sri Lankan Airlines Departures from Heathrow daily direct.

Qatar Airways Departures from Heathrow and Manchester daily via Doha. 

British Airways Departures from Gatwick 3 times a week via Malé until 31 March 2015.

Emirates Departures from Gatwick, Heathrow, Manchester,Birmingham, Newcastle and Glasgow daily via Dubai.

Note: All our inclusive holiday prices are based on Sri Lankan Airlines Economy flights. Prices with British Airways, Qatar Airways and Emirates are also available on request.

Language

Sinhala and Tamil are the official languages. English is widely spoken.

Time Difference

5 hours 30 minutes ahead of GMT

Currency

Sri Lankan rupee. Major credit cards are also accepted at all hotels.

Useful Information

An Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) visa is required for all trips to Sri Lanka. British Nationals travelling from 1 January 2012 onwards will be subject to an ETA visa fee of approximately US$25 per person - applications and payments are to be made via www.eta.gov.lk prior to travel and a printed copy of the approval must be shown to immigration on arrival. A visa on arrival will be subject to an approximate cost of US$30 per person. Please be aware that there will only be 2 counters for processing ETA's on arrival and this is likely to cause delays. We therefore strongly recommend you obtain an ETA prior to arrival. Children under 12 yrs are free of charge, but must still obtain an ETA as described above. Your passport should be valid for at least six months beyond the end of your intended stay. 

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