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Highlights
  • Explore the ruined cities of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa,
  • Wander throught the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy
  • Lion Rock at Sigiriya is an amazing ruined fort and one of the highlights of this fine country
  • Trek through lush tea plantations
  • Indulge in seafood feasts in quaint fishing villages
  • Dip your toes in the calm, clear waters off the beach at Mirissa
Countries
Cities & Attractions
Activities
  • N/A

A jewel in the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is jam-packed with ancient sites, fascinating culture, beautiful wilderness and idyllic beaches. From ancient Anuradhapura city and the well-preserved Polonnaruwa ruins, to the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic and the impressive Sigiriya rock fortress, Sri Lankan culture spans more than 2,000 years and still remains vibrant and alive today. Trek through lush tea plantations, indulge in seafood feasts in quaint fishing villages and dip your toes in the calm, clear waters of Mirissa beach on this all-encompassing adventure for those seeking a unique travel experience.

Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings
4.7 out of 5 | Excellent

99%

recommend

2,342 Reviews

Excellent 1,830 Great 464 Average 30 Disappointing 9 Terrible 9

Rating Details

Value
4.7 Guide
4.8 Activities
4.8 Lodging
4.7 Transportation
4.7 Meals
4.7
Circle Sri Lanka
100% Recommend

I gace this score because if people

5.0 out of 5 | Excellent
October 2015
Intrepid Travel
Recommend: Yes
I gace this score because if people are looking for in terms of culture travel and accomoodation then this would be the one I would recommend
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Our guide was fantastic and very informative

5.0 out of 5 | Excellent
October 2015
Intrepid Travel
Recommend: Yes
Our guide was fantastic and very informative nothing was a problem, we were all different and he tried to please us all without any problems
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Itinerary

Day 1 Negombo

Ayu-bowan! Welcome to Sri Lanka. Your adventure begins in the town of Negombo, located close to the international airport. You can arrive at any time on Day 1 as there are no activities planned until the important welcome meeting at 5:30 PM. Those arriving early can get into the spirit of seaside Sri Lanka by observing the local fishing craft and perhaps feasting on fresh seafood. The beautiful surrounding countryside is best explored on a bicycle, which you can rent with help from the hotel reception.

Day 2 Anuradhapura

Leave Negombo after breakfast today. Your private vehicle takes you to ancient Anuradhapura via the small town of Chilaw (approximately 5 hours total travel time). A guided bicycle tour of the city will take place either today or on the morning of Day 3, depending on our arrival time and the weather. Among the ruins you'll see the sacred old Bo Tree, a spiritual reminder of the beginnings of Buddhism in Sri Lanka and the inspiration for Anuradhapura's great buildings. The ruins themselves are spread over quite an area, some in woodland settings and others appearing park-like with columns and ponds dotted about.

Day 3 Anuradhapura

If you've already had your bicycle tour of the ruins of ancient Anuradhapura, there is no shortage of further options today. Those keen on history and archaeology might like to visit one of the local museums. Mihintale, the sacred birthplace of Sri Lankan Buddhism, is recommended. The price of this will depend on the number of people sharing the vehicle.

Day 4 Polonnaruwa

Take a local bus to Polonnaruwa (approximately 2.5 hours), the capital of the Indian Chola Dynasty after Anuradhapura was conquered in the late 10th century. These ruins are close together and generally in much better repair than those you have just seen. Cycling amid the remains of 1,000-year-old Polonnaruwa is once again the best way to get around. Once the heat of the day has eased you'll visit more palaces, temples and stupas. A likely highlight will be the massive stone Buddhas: 14-metre-high granite carvings of the iconic reclining Buddha which represent the zenith of Sinhalese rock carving. You'll also visit the well laid-out museum, which has scale models of many of the buildings to show how they would have existed in their time.

Day 5 Dambulla

Depart Polonnaruwa this morning and travel to Dambulla by local bus (approximately 2.5 hours). Explore the amazing Dambulla Cave Temples which are located high on a stone cliff face. Some 150 Buddha images adorn the five caves, with fascinating frescoes and paintings on the walls and roofs. In the afternoon, you may like to relax by the hotel pool or take an optional visit to a nearby wildlife reserve where you might spot some wild elephants with a bit of luck. Which park is available to visit depends on the season, but both Minneriya and Kaudulla are within easy reach of Dambulla. Notes: There are numerous steps to get to the caves. You will need to remove your shoes and be dressed appropriately, with shoulders and legs covered, to enter.

Day 6 Kandy

Early this morning, before the heat is too intense, head to Sigiriya (approximately 30 minutes). This ruined fortress is one of Sri Lanka's premier sights. Those who make it to the top are rewarded with astounding views. Make sure you are wearing sturdy footwear, as this is a very steep climb with some uneven slopes. Those unable to climb to the top can explore the gardens at the base of the rock and still get some fantastic shots of the fortress from below. Return to the hotel to freshen up before heading to Kandy (approximately 3 hours). On the way, there's the option of stopping at one of the region's wonderful spice gardens for lunch. In beautifully located Kandy, visit the Dalada Maligawa (aka Temple of the Tooth), Sri Lanka's most important Buddhist site, and mingle with the white-clad pilgrims who come here to worship. Time permitting, you'll have the option of visiting the National Museum or the world-class Botanical Gardens. Another great option is an early-evening performance of the famed Kandyan dancers, drummers and and fire-walkers.

Day 7 Kandy

Today you will visit a nearby tea factory and take a guided tour to learn about the production of Sri Lanka's best-known beverage. Of course, you will also sample some of the delicious varieties while you're here. Your hotel in Kandy, located far from the noise and bustle of the city, is a great place to unwind with lovely views over the town.

Day 8 Bandarawela

Take a scenic train journey into the highlands and disembark at Bandarawela (approximately 7 hours). Here you will visit a local home for a cooking demonstration to learn some secrets of traditional Sri Lankan cuisine. Enjoy the delicious meal afterwards. Your accommodation tonight is a simple but pleasant guesthouse located in a quiet part of town.

Day 9 Udeweriya

Take a local train to the starting point for our walk today (approximately 45mins). This hike (approximately 4 hours) takes you through picturesque tea plantations and small Tamil villages. Tonight's accommodation is a comfortable local guesthouse where the accomodation is in single sex multi share rooms. Notes: The walks require good walking shoes, as the 'track' is often just rocks under shrubs, and if there has been rain it can get very muddy and slippery. You do need to be fit, because although the walk is not too demanding, it can be difficult walking on rough and unsteady ground. Our usual route is about 20 kilometres in total. If you don't feel you are able to complete these walks, you can take an option to either stay in Bandarawela for an extra night, or if you don't wish to complete the second day's walk your group leader will be able to organise a transport alternative. These options would be at your own expense.

Day 10 Bandarawela

Set off for some more walking today (approximately 4.5 hours) to explore more of the beautiful surrounds of Sri Lanka's Hill Country. Enjoy this chance to meet the curious friendly children and tea pickers along the way. Stop for an included lunch in Bambarakanda. You'll stay in the same guesthouse in Bandarawela as the night before your trek.

Day 11 Mirissa

Set off south for the coast, stopping at the Elephant Transit Home en route. At this special organisation you'll experience feeding time for baby orphaned elephants and learn more about their rehabilitation. Then drive further along the Sri Lankan south coast by private bus (approximately 7 hours) to the beach of Mirissa. This is your paradise for two days of relaxation, with your comfortable accommodation just metres from the water.

Day 12 Mirissa

Enjoy a day of beach splendour in Mirissa. The beach itself is a long curve of sand with lovely clear waters for swimming – a great spot to watch the sunset. Consider taking a bicycle ride or tuk-tuk to nearby Weligama, where colourful fishing boats bring fresh fish to sell along the shore. The local cottage industry of lace products is also well worth a look.

Day 13 Galle

Head further down the coast, possibly stopping for a photo opportunity with the famous stilt fishermen casting lines from their traditional poles. Arrive in Galle (approximately 1 hour), home to an impressive World Heritage-listed Dutch fort with extensive walls and many interesting old buildings. In the evening, enjoy a stroll around the historic fort and watch the sunset from the ramparts.

Day 14 Colombo

Leaving Galle, we take a classic train ride, catching glimpses of the beautiful coastline before rolling into Colombo (approximately 3 hours). After checking in, you'll set off for a city walk via the bustling Petta Bazaar, Independence Square, Parliament, and past the National Museum, finishing with a shopping opportunity for a good cause at the Barefoot fairtrade store. Here you can find a collection of handicrafts from around the country and support small cottage industries. Tonight there's an optional final group dinner to celebrate your journey.

Day 15 Colombo

Your trip comes to an end today, with no activities planned. Checkout time at the hotel is 12 noon.

Dates & Pricing

Price From

$ 1,948

Price Per Day:

$ 130 per person
 
Start DateFinish DateBase PriceDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Nov-26-2017Dec-10-2017$ 1,948Yes1 spots left Reserve
Dec-01-2017Dec-15-2017$ 2,044Yes2 spots left Reserve
Dec-03-2017Dec-17-2017$ 1,948Yes7 spots left Reserve
Dec-08-2017Dec-22-2017$ 1,988Yes7 spots left Reserve
Dec-15-2017Dec-29-2017$ 1,948Yes7 spots left Reserve
Dec-17-2017Dec-31-2017$ 2,580Yes2 spots left Reserve
Dec-18-2017Jan-01-2018$ 2,485Yes3 spots left Reserve
Dec-22-2017Jan-05-2018$ 2,605YesSold Out Reserve
Dec-24-2017Jan-07-2018$ 2,580YesSold Out Reserve
Dec-29-2017Jan-12-2018$ 2,510YesSold Out Reserve
Dec-31-2017Jan-14-2018$ 2,580YesSold Out Reserve
Jan-07-2018Jan-21-2018$ 2,375Yes7 spots left Reserve
Jan-12-2018Jan-26-2018$ 2,375Yes7 spots left Reserve
Jan-14-2018Jan-28-2018$ 2,445Yes6 spots left Reserve
Jan-19-2018Feb-02-2018$ 2,445Yes4 spots left Reserve
Jan-21-2018Feb-04-2018$ 2,375Yes9 spots left Reserve
Jan-26-2018Feb-09-2018$ 2,375Yes6 spots left Reserve
Jan-28-2018Feb-11-2018$ 2,375Yes8 spots left Reserve
Feb-02-2018Feb-16-2018$ 2,375Yes9 spots left Reserve
Feb-04-2018Feb-18-2018$ 2,445Yes6 spots left Reserve
Feb-09-2018Feb-23-2018$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Feb-11-2018Feb-25-2018$ 2,515Yes4 spots left Reserve
Feb-16-2018Mar-02-2018$ 2,375Yes7 spots left Reserve
Feb-18-2018Mar-04-2018$ 2,375Yes11 spots left Reserve
Feb-23-2018Mar-09-2018$ 2,375Yes9 spots left Reserve
Feb-25-2018Mar-11-2018$ 2,445Yes6 spots left Reserve
Mar-04-2018Mar-18-2018$ 2,290Yes8 spots left Reserve
Mar-09-2018Mar-23-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Mar-11-2018Mar-25-2018$ 2,360Yes6 spots left Reserve
Mar-16-2018Mar-30-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Mar-18-2018Apr-01-2018$ 2,290Yes11 spots left Reserve
Mar-25-2018Apr-08-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Apr-01-2018Apr-15-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Apr-06-2018Apr-20-2018$ 2,290Yes11 spots left Reserve
Apr-08-2018Apr-22-2018$ 2,290Yes7 spots left Reserve
Apr-13-2018Apr-27-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Apr-15-2018Apr-29-2018$ 2,290Yes11 spots left Reserve
Apr-22-2018May-06-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
May-06-2018May-20-2018$ 2,220Yes6 spots left Reserve
May-18-2018Jun-01-2018$ 2,200Yes10 spots left Reserve
May-27-2018Jun-10-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Jun-03-2018Jun-17-2018$ 2,200Yes11 spots left Reserve
Jun-17-2018Jul-01-2018$ 2,200Yes10 spots left Reserve
Jun-24-2018Jul-08-2018$ 2,200Yes10 spots left Reserve
Jul-01-2018Jul-15-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Jul-06-2018Jul-20-2018$ 2,200Yes9 spots left Reserve
Jul-08-2018Jul-22-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Jul-13-2018Jul-27-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Jul-15-2018Jul-29-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Jul-20-2018Aug-03-2018$ 2,200Yes10 spots left Reserve
Jul-22-2018Aug-05-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Jul-27-2018Aug-10-2018$ 2,200Yes10 spots left Reserve
Aug-03-2018Aug-17-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Aug-05-2018Aug-19-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Aug-12-2018Aug-26-2018$ 2,200Yes11 spots left Reserve
Aug-19-2018Sep-02-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Aug-26-2018Sep-09-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Sep-02-2018Sep-16-2018$ 2,200Yes10 spots left Reserve
Sep-07-2018Sep-21-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Sep-09-2018Sep-23-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Sep-14-2018Sep-28-2018$ 2,200Yes12 spots left Reserve
Sep-21-2018Oct-05-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Sep-30-2018Oct-14-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Oct-07-2018Oct-21-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Oct-14-2018Oct-28-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Oct-19-2018Nov-02-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Oct-21-2018Nov-04-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Oct-28-2018Nov-11-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Nov-04-2018Nov-18-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Nov-11-2018Nov-25-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Nov-16-2018Nov-30-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Nov-18-2018Dec-02-2018$ 2,290Yes10 spots left Reserve
Nov-23-2018Dec-07-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Nov-30-2018Dec-14-2018$ 2,290Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-02-2018Dec-16-2018$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-07-2018Dec-21-2018$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-09-2018Dec-23-2018$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-14-2018Dec-28-2018$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-16-2018Dec-30-2018$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-21-2018Jan-04-2019$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-23-2018Jan-06-2019$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-28-2018Jan-11-2019$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-30-2018Jan-13-2019$ 2,375Yes12 spots left Reserve
Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Intrepid Travel
Details
Group Size:
Small Group - 24 max
Maximum Number of People in Group: 12
Accomodations
Guesthouse (2 nights),Hotel (12 nights)
Start City
Negombo
End City
Colombo
Guides All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.
Additional Information:

Finish point

  • Z Max Fairway
  • No. 07, Hospital Street
  • Colombo 01
  • Colombo
  • SRI LANKA

Trip ID#: intrepid-HPSH

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