Culture and Heritage

Day 1

Airport to Negombo
15 km approx. 
10 mins drive 

Arriving at Colombo International Airport, Ceylo travelers greet you warmly. After that, travel to Negombo.

Check into your hotel. In the evening, take a Negombo city tour. Negombo is the main beach resort on the West Coast. Negombo, a typical fishing village, is known for its broad sandy beaches and safe water. Aside from the beach, the fish market is worth a visit, where a variety of fish, including prawns, crabs, and seaweed, are traded in the mornings when the fishing boats return to the shore with their haul. The most common fishing vessel is the rule, an outrigger canoe excavated out of massive wood and seen in vast numbers in the Negombo lagoon. Dinner & overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 2

Negombo  to Dambulla via Pinnawala 
176 approx.
4 hrs

After breakfast, depart towards Dambulla. Visit the Elephant Orphanage at Pinnawala on the way.

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage cares for around 60 elephants (of whom approximately 50 are young elephants) discovered abandoned or orphaned in the wild. The wildlife authority looks after them, feeds them, and trains them. The ideal time to come is around 9 a.m. when you will be able to observe these “babes” being bottle-fed. You could also observe the elephants taking their regular bathing in a nearby river.

Dambulla Rock Temple was constructed in the first century B.C. by King Walagambahu. Dambulla is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the most magnificent of Sri Lanka’s cave temples. The network of five caverns has about 2000 square meters of painted walls and ceilings, making it the world’s biggest painted wall area. The caverns feature around 150 pictures of the Buddha, the greatest of which is a 14-meter-long enormous sculpture carved out of rock.

Dambulla hotel dinner and overnight stay.

Day 3

Dambulla to Sigiriya
20kms approx.
2 ½  hrs visit 

Visit the rock stronghold of Sigiriya after breakfast at the hotel. Sigiriya, also known as the eighth wonder of the world, dates back over 7,000 years, passing through pre-historic, proto-historic, and early historic periods before emerging as a rock-shelter mountain in the 3rd century BC, with caves prepared and donated by devotees to the monastery from around the sangha. Kasyapa built the garden city and palace between 477 and 495 AD. Following Kasyapa’s death, it became a monastic complex until the 14th century. Sigiriya is a remarkable testimony of Ceylon’s civilization under the time of Kassapa I. Passionate admirers began visiting the ‘Lion Mountain’ location around the sixth century AD.

Afternoon In Hiriwaduwna, take a village safari. The adventure begins with a breathtaking stroll along the edge of a wewa, or man-made reservoir. The reservoir, as well as the adjacent scrub forest, marshes, and community, all buzzing with life in the early morning and late evening. The incredible wildlife, butterflies, and probable crocodile sightings just add to the delight of observing the locals as they go about their early morning activities of fishing or washing clothes on the lake’s edge.

One-hour Catamaran Safari.

When you need to get a Chena Cultivation via a somewhat larger tributary that must be crossed on a catamaran, the feeling of adventure grows!

You will pause at the Chena crop to appreciate the farmer’s simple welcome. Enjoy a cup of luscious King Coconut/Aromatic ginger tea or some other seasonal fruit. On the catamaran, you may witness peacocks, green pigeons, cormorants, green bitters, kingfishers, eagles, and a variety of other species, as well as land and water monitors.

A typical village supper at a nearby home. Following the cart ride and catamaran safari, the traditional meal at a local residence served by village women follows. This is served on a lotus leaf and a cane thatched flat holder in a classic and traditional buffet form (clay pots – buffet). (Guests might be asked to help prepare the meals). Staying in a hotel for the night.

Day 4

Dambulla to Polonnaruwa 
20kms approx.
2 ½ hrs visit 

After breakfast, drive to Polonnaruwa. Take a city tour in Polonnaruwa. Polonnaruwa is Sri Lanka’s second largest city. It was erected in the 11th and 12th centuries A.D. and is a world historic site.

Minneriya Jeep Safari at Minneriya National Park is the world’s biggest-known meeting spot for Asian elephants. During this period, groups of up to 350 elephants may be observed in the 8,890-hectare park, which is just a few square kilometers from the Minneriya Tank. According to some sources, there are up to 700 elephants. During the dry season in August and September each year, wild elephants move from Wasgamuwa National Park to Minneriya National Park in search of food and refuge. Dinner & overnight stay at the hotel in Polonnaruwa

Day 5

Habarana  to Kandy via matale
93 kms approx.
3 ½ hrs. 

After breakfast, go for Kandy. Visit Dambulla Rock Cave Temple on the route. Dambulla Rock Temple was established in the first century B.C. by King Walagambahu. Dambulla is the most magnificent of Sri Lanka’s cave temples and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The network of five caverns with over 2000 square meters of painted walls and ceilings is the world’s largest painted wall area. The caverns feature around 150 pictures of the Buddha, the greatest of which is a 14-meter-long enormous sculpture of the Buddha carved out of rock.

On the way, stop at a spice garden to learn about the many spices that Sri Lanka is famous for. You will be introduced to several spices and taught how some of these spices are cultivated and processed.

Arrive in Kandy. Enjoy an ethnic dance show in the evening.

Dinner and an overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 6

Breakfast at the hotel, followed by a Kandy city tour.

The Temple of the Tooth Relic in Kandy, also known as Dalada Maligawa, is one of the holiest and most sacred destinations for Buddhists in the country’s central highlands. The shrine is said to hold one of Lord Buddha’s teeth. Many years after Buddha’s death, an Indian princess named Hemamala brought the tooth relic to Sri Lanka.

The temple structure is surrounded by a moat and white elephant sculptures. Views of the four principal Devalas (God temples) were also available from the temple complex. As you enter the temple grounds, you will notice sculptures of renowned and well-known monks, such as the Hikkaduwe Sri Summangala Thera and Weera Keppetipola Disawe, a hero of the Uva revolt against the British. From here, you can plainly see the Octagon and the golden canopy above the chamber containing the tooth relic.

Dinner and an overnight stay at the hotel are included.

Day 7

Kandy to Ella via Nuwara Eliya
130kms approx.
6 ½ hrs

Breakfast at the hotel, then drive to Ella. Visit a tea factory in Nuwara Eliya on the way.

Visit a tea plantation and a tea factory, where some of the world’s greatest tea is made. You will learn about the tea production process and witness how tea is graded. In the factory, have a cup of genuine Ceylon tea. Nuwara Eliya is the top hill resort in Sri Lanka, having a wonderful, invigorating mountain climate. Nuwara Eliya is also the center of tea country in Sri Lanka, producing half of the world’s best tea. Pidurutalagala (8280 ft), Sri Lanka’s tallest peak, is located here. It is also well-known for its British architecture.

Dinner and an overnight stay in Ella at a hotel.

Day 8

Ella to Udawalawe

Breakfast is served at the hotel.  Continue to Udawalawe.  Do a Jeep safari at Udawalawe National Park, one of the country’s largest national parks and famous for its elephants.

Day 9

Udawalawe to Colombo vía Galle

After breakfast at the hotel, proceed to the old city of Galle. Visit the Dutch Fort of Galle. The Galle Fort, also known as The Dutch Fort or the “Ramparts of Galle,” withstood the Boxing Day tsunami, which wrecked a chunk of the coastal region of Galle Town. In addition to the Dutch Reformed Church, the Galle Fort features the famed Amangalla resort hotel. It was built in 1684 for the Dutch Governor and his servants. It was turned into the New Oriental Hotel in 1865, catering to European visitors traveling between Europe and Galle Port in the nineteenth century.

Continue to Colombo. Colombo, like many other developing-country capital cities, is fast changing. Where ancient ones formerly existed, new ones arise almost instantly, yet certain areas retain an old-world charm. The city still includes a century-old clock tower and a handful of British colonial monuments. Some of the places of interest to visit include the folk-art center, the new parliament in Sri Jayawardenapura, the Bandaranaike memorial international conference hall, the Pettah bazaar, where one can find bargains, a Hindu and a Buddhist temple, residential areas where wealthy mansions can be found, the Colombo Museum (outside visit only), and others.

Dinner and an overnight stay in Colombo at a hotel

Day 10

Colombo – Airport 
40kms approx.

We wish you farewell as our Chauffeur Guide drives you to the airport to catch your return trip home because all wonderful things must come to an end.