Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Discover Sri Lanka tour
Cultural Culture Discover Sri Lanka package
Nature & Wildlife Festivals & Special Events Discover Sri Lanka package

Discover Sri Lanka

Exodus Travels Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.6 . Excellent
99%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
16 days
From: $ 2,049 $ 128 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • The magnificent cave temples at Dambulla
  • Cycle through rice paddy fields
  • Search for leopard in Yala National Park
  • Climb the rock fortress at Sigiriya for breathtaking views

Short Description

Lapped by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a natural paradise with a landscape of verdant mountains, rainforests, paddy fields, tumbling waterfalls and sweeping gorges. From ancient Buddhist temples, the fortress of Sigiriya, the towns of Kandy and Nuwara Eliya in the hill country, the wildlife of Yala National Park (which has one of the highest concentrations of leopards in the world), to the idyllic palm-fringed beaches of the south coast, this small island offers incredible variety, made extra special by its laid back atmosphere and hospitable people.Spend two weeks exploring the delights of this diverse and inspiring island

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
Off the beaten track trips will stretch your comfort zone. They don't always feature tourist highlights, but dive deeper into local life and culture.
Itinerary Focus Off the Beaten Path
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport Only ground transport
Start City Veyangoda
End City Colombo

Destinations

Sri Lanka

Cities & Attractions

N/A

Age Requirement

16

No Single Supplement
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Trip Includes

  • All breakfasts and 1 lunch
  • All accommodation
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

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Itinerary

Flight Inclusive

Day 1 Depart London.

The group flight usually departs in the evening from London Heathrow. **

Day 2 Arrive Colombo; transfer to Veyangoda.

The group flight arrives at Colombo's Bandaranaike Airport and we transfer to our hotel approximately 30 minutes away. Those not flying with the group will meet us at the hotel. *The Covanro or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 3 Visit cave temples at Dambulla; to Sigiriya.

We depart after breakfast for the drive (approx. 4 hours) through lush green countryside (a mix of coconut palms, paddy fields and banana plantations) through Kurunegala to Dambulla. Here we visit the magnificent Cave Temple, for some, the most impressive sight in Sri Lanka. There are colourful, well preserved paintings and statues of Buddha inside the caves, which date back to the 1st century BC. After lunch we continue to Sigiriya where we stay for the night. From our hotel we can see Lions Rock rising up from the plains (occasionally we may stay nearer to Dambulla due to hotel availability). *Hotel Sigiriya or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 4 Morning climb to the rock fortress; optional afternoon game drive.

This morning we drive to the foot of the Lions Rock at Sigiriya. The imposing 5th century rock fortress of Sigiriya rises 600 feet from the plains overlooking the surrounding countryside and giving far-reaching views. Used as a safe haven from invaders, the route to the top goes via a series of steep steps and gangways. From the base, where a moat surrounds impressive water gardens, we ascend 200m, passing an overhanging rock under which superb portraits of native maidens holding flowers and temple offerings still adorn the rock wall. Crowning the flat-topped summit of the rock are extensive remains of the King's Summer Palace. During the afternoon there is a chance to enjoy an optional game drive in either Minneriya or Kaudulla National Park or the Hurulu Eco Park to see elephants in their natural habitat. For those who don’t want to take part, there is time to relax at the hotel. *Hotel Sigiriya or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 5 To Giritale; bike ride through country villages.

This morning we have a short drive to Giritale where our usual hotel overlooks the scenic Giritale Tank. The island’s early inhabitants solved the dual problem of heat and lack of water in this dry area by constructing large tanks to act as reservoirs and cool the warm breeze. Nowadays they provide an important habitat for bird life, particularly from August to April. Today we take to bikes and cycle at a leisurely pace through a series of small villages and lakes (if you do not wish to participate you can hire a tuk tuk locally for approximately £10 per tuk tuk and follow the group but not cycle). We should see plenty of bird life including Egrets, Brahmany kites, Kingfishers and Bulbuls. Stopping for lunch in a traditional village will break up the journey. In the late afternoon we return to our hotel in Giritale. *Giritale Hotel or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 6 Visit ancient capital of Polonnaruwa; drive to Kandy via spice garden.

After breakfast we take a short drive to the 10th century capital of Sri Lanka; Polonnaruwa, the ancient capital of the Sinhalese. Here there are many Buddhist relics and ruins dating from a thousand years ago when Sinhalese culture reached its zenith. The city flourished in the 12th century after the decision was made to move the capital from Anuradhapura, so it was further away from incursions from Southern India. The ruins are therefore younger and better preserved than those at Anuradhapura. We visit many of the temples, palaces, huge dagobas (Buddhist stupas) and remarkable Buddhist sculptures. After lunch we head into the hills to the picturesque town of Kandy. On the way we stop at a spice garden near Matale where we can see various spices and herbs growing, and there is a chance to stock up on massage oils, spices and Ayurvedic medicines. This is a long but fascinating day and we arrive at Kandy in the early evening. *Hotel Thilanka or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 7-8 Free time in Kandy to explore or relax.

Kandy is located by a small lake and we spend two full days in and around the town. On the first day we will visit the Temple of the Tooth, which houses Sri Lanka's most important Buddhist relic. The Tooth of Buddha was taken from the funeral pyre in 543 BC and only found its way to Sri Lanka in the 4th century AD. There are literally hundreds of worshippers who visit the temple each day and in August the most spectacular ceremony takes place. Some of our trips in August should coincide with the Kandy festival, but the exact dates, decided by priests, are not known until 5 months prior to the event. After our visit we drive to a beautiful viewpoint over Kandy overlooked by a huge Buddha, and visit a gem museum where you can see the products of the traditional methods of gem extraction. Another highlight is the vast Peradeniya Botanical Garden with species of orchid that are endemic to Sri Lanka. In the evening we may have the chance to attend a performance of dancing and fire walking. The second day is free to explore this wonderful town. The surrounding hills are wonderful, offering fantastic views of the town below and there are many handicraft stores and antique shops in which to browse. *Hotel Thilanka or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 9 To Nuwara Eliya via Kitulgala; optional Adams Peak climb (Dec-Apr only).

Leaving Kandy early, we have a spectacular drive through the countryside on the way to Kitulgala. Here we have the opportunity of going on a walk through the jungle or local villages followed by an optional white water rafting excursion. The rafting costs extra (see the Optional Excursions section), lasts a maximum of 1.5 hours and there is a choice of gentle or wild water (grade 3 rapids) depending on your preference. Those of us who do not wish to go rafting will be able to freshen up and relax by the water until the rafters return in time for lunch. Afterwards we will drive to our hotel in Nuwara Eliya. (Please note that from the full moon day of December to the full moon day of May it is possible to climb Adams Peak. This is optional and you need to be very fit to attempt this. You would leave Nuwara Eliya at 11pm on day 8 and drive to the base of the peak. From here it is a strenuous 4 hour climb to the top in time for sunrise. We then return to Nuwara Eliya to join the group for lunch on day 9). *Mirage Kings Cottage (or similar) *

Day 10 Free morning in old colonial hillstation of Nuwara Eliya. Visit tea factory in afternoon.

This morning we will have free time to explore the beautiful town of Nuwara Eliya. Nuwara Eliya was a popular hill station during the British era and is situated in the cool highland air at 1890m. Known locally as 'Little England' it is dotted with British style houses and parks and features a golf club and a racecourse! Following lunch we will visit a nearby tea factory and learn about the process of tea production. *Mirage Kings Cottage (or similar) *

Day 11 Early morning to Horton Plains; walk to World's End viewpoint; to Bandarawela by train.

We have an early start this morning and take a 30km drive south to Horton Plains, a large plateau over 2,000m high, overlooked by the second and third highest peaks in Sri Lanka. The scenery is beautiful and the best way to explore is on foot. We take a guided walk through the rolling grasslands where we hope to see such as the Sambur and Purple Faced monkey. We also visit 'World's End' which is one of the most stunning sights in Sri Lanka where the ground drops 1050m to the plains. Following this we catch a train from the highest railway station in the country - within an hour and a half we drop from 1889m to 1097m. The train travels through the cloud forest into the tea plantations, with breath-taking views of the lush valley below. Please note that at times, particularly in peak season, the train may be extremely busy with standing room only. As a result you may get a choice between taking the train or going by road, and in extreme cases the leader may decide that the whole group should go by road and avoid the train. We get off at Bandarawela, a town relatively untouched by tourism. *Orient Hotel or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 12 Scenic drive through Ella Gap to Kataragama; game drive in Yala N.P.

Today we continue on to Ella Gap where we have spectacular views of the coastal plain nearly 1,000m below. Almost the entire southern part of the island is in view and on a particularly clear day the shimmering silver of the Indian Ocean is visible. Heading south out of the hills we travel to Kataragama on the plains; this is our base for visiting Sri Lanka's best known national park, Yala. The park is popular for elephant, leopard, bear, crocodile and Wild boar. At 97,800 hectares, this is the second largest of Sri Lanka's national parks. Its open undulating terrain made it famous for elephants for many years, but recently the park has also become better known for leopard. The park, which is primarily shrub jungle with several salt and fresh water lagoons, has one of the highest concentrations of leopard per square kilometre in the world. (Please note that the sanctuary may be closed for 4-6 weeks from September to October allowing the park authorities to check the welfare of the animals. We therefore go to an alternative area close by, usually Udawalawe National Park). *Mandara Rosen or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 13 Drive to Tangalle and walk through rice paddies; coastal drive to Ahangama; optional lunch at Tsunami house.

Today we leave for the coast, with its beautiful palm fringed bays. Stopping on the way at Hambantota and walking to a nearby farm house where you be offered tea in a coconut shell along with a local snack. We will mix with real Sri Lankan life and take part in some traditional Sri Lankan games, returning to our bus in tractors used by the farmers. We have the option of enjoying lunch at one of the houses that we built for Tsunami victims; this may be one of the best curries of your trip! Continuing on to Ahangama in the afternoon we arrive at our coastal hotel and you can relax for the rest of the day. *Insight Resort or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 14 Free day to relax on the beach or optional activities including whale watching (Nov to April).

Today is a free day to relax on the beach or by the hotel pool. There are also optional activities during the day including a boat ride through mangrove swamps to a cinnamon plantation or, from November to April you can go whale watching off Dondra head, one of the best places in the world for seeing Blue and Sperm whales. Huge pods of dolphins are also often seen playing alongside the boats. *Insight Resort or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 15 To Galle; visit old fort; transfer to Colombo.

We set off today and drive along the coastal road to the historic port of Galle, which dates back to the 17th century, and now a UNESCO world heritage site. On the way we stop at a small folk museum inspired by the local writer Martin Wickramasinghe. The museum is a typical house from the Koggala region and is set amongst beautiful gardens. We continue along the expressway to Colombo reaching our hotel in the late afternoon. *Hotel Mirage or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 16 Fly to London.

If you are travelling on the group flight we will have a morning transfer to the airport for the daytime flight to London. The arrangements for those not flying with the group ends after check out. **



Land Only

Day 1 Start Veyangoda.

The group flight arrives at Colombo's Bandaranaike Airport and we transfer to our hotel approximately 30 minutes away. Those not flying with the group will meet us at the hotel. *The Covanro or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 2 Visit cave temples at Dambulla; to Sigiriya.

We depart after breakfast for the drive (approx. 4 hours) through lush green countryside (a mix of coconut palms, paddy fields and banana plantations) through Kurunegala to Dambulla. Here we visit the magnificent Cave Temple, for some, the most impressive sight in Sri Lanka. There are colourful, well preserved paintings and statues of Buddha inside the caves, which date back to the 1st century BC. After lunch we continue to Sigiriya where we stay for the night. From our hotel we can see Lions Rock rising up from the plains (occasionally we may stay nearer to Dambulla due to hotel availability). *Hotel Sigiriya or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 3 Morning climb to the rock fortress; optional afternoon game drive.

This morning we drive to the foot of the Lions Rock at Sigiriya. The imposing 5th century rock fortress of Sigiriya rises 600 feet from the plains overlooking the surrounding countryside and giving far-reaching views. Used as a safe haven from invaders, the route to the top goes via a series of steep steps and gangways. From the base, where a moat surrounds impressive water gardens, we ascend 200m, passing an overhanging rock under which superb portraits of native maidens holding flowers and temple offerings still adorn the rock wall. Crowning the flat-topped summit of the rock are extensive remains of the King's Summer Palace. During the afternoon there is a chance to enjoy an optional game drive in either Minneriya or Kaudulla National Park or the Hurulu Eco Park to see elephants in their natural habitat. For those who don’t want to take part, there is time to relax at the hotel. *Hotel Sigiriya or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 4 To Giritale; bike ride through country villages.

This morning we have a short drive to Giritale where our usual hotel overlooks the scenic Giritale Tank. The island’s early inhabitants solved the dual problem of heat and lack of water in this dry area by constructing large tanks to act as reservoirs and cool the warm breeze. Nowadays they provide an important habitat for bird life, particularly from August to April. Today we take to bikes and cycle at a leisurely pace through a series of small villages and lakes (if you do not wish to participate you can hire a tuk tuk locally for approximately £10 per tuk tuk and follow the group but not cycle). We should see plenty of bird life including Egrets, Brahmany kites, Kingfishers and Bulbuls. Stopping for lunch in a traditional village will break up the journey. In the late afternoon we return to our hotel in Giritale. *Giritale Hotel or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 5 Visit ancient capital of Polonnaruwa; drive to Kandy via spice garden.

After breakfast we take a short drive to the 10th century capital of Sri Lanka; Polonnaruwa, the ancient capital of the Sinhalese. Here there are many Buddhist relics and ruins dating from a thousand years ago when Sinhalese culture reached its zenith. The city flourished in the 12th century after the decision was made to move the capital from Anuradhapura, so it was further away from incursions from Southern India. The ruins are therefore younger and better preserved than those at Anuradhapura. We visit many of the temples, palaces, huge dagobas (Buddhist stupas) and remarkable Buddhist sculptures. After lunch we head into the hills to the picturesque town of Kandy. On the way we stop at a spice garden near Matale where we can see various spices and herbs growing, and there is a chance to stock up on massage oils, spices and Ayurvedic medicines. This is a long but fascinating day and we arrive at Kandy in the early evening. *Hotel Thilanka or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 6-7 Free time in Kandy to explore or relax.

Kandy is located by a small lake and we spend two full days in and around the town. On the first day we will visit the Temple of the Tooth, which houses Sri Lanka's most important Buddhist relic. The Tooth of Buddha was taken from the funeral pyre in 543 BC and only found its way to Sri Lanka in the 4th century AD. There are literally hundreds of worshippers who visit the temple each day and in August the most spectacular ceremony takes place. Some of our trips in August should coincide with the Kandy festival, but the exact dates, decided by priests, are not known until 5 months prior to the event. After our visit we drive to a beautiful viewpoint over Kandy overlooked by a huge Buddha, and visit a gem museum where you can see the products of the traditional methods of gem extraction. Another highlight is the vast Peradeniya Botanical Garden with species of orchid that are endemic to Sri Lanka. In the evening we may have the chance to attend a performance of dancing and fire walking. The second day is free to explore this wonderful town. The surrounding hills are wonderful, offering fantastic views of the town below and there are many handicraft stores and antique shops in which to browse. *Hotel Thilanka or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 8 To Nuwara Eliya via Kitulgala; optional Adams Peak climb (Dec-Apr only).

Leaving Kandy early, we have a spectacular drive through the countryside on the way to Kitulgala. Here we have the opportunity of going on a walk through the jungle or local villages followed by an optional white water rafting excursion. The rafting costs extra (see the Optional Excursions section), lasts a maximum of 1.5 hours and there is a choice of gentle or wild water (grade 3 rapids) depending on your preference. Those of us who do not wish to go rafting will be able to freshen up and relax by the water until the rafters return in time for lunch. Afterwards we will drive to our hotel in Nuwara Eliya. (Please note that from the full moon day of December to the full moon day of May it is possible to climb Adams Peak. This is optional and you need to be very fit to attempt this. You would leave Nuwara Eliya at 11pm on day 8 and drive to the base of the peak. From here it is a strenuous 4 hour climb to the top in time for sunrise. We then return to Nuwara Eliya to join the group for lunch on day 9). *Mirage Kings Cottage (or similar) *

Day 9 Free morning in old colonial hillstation of Nuwara Eliya. Visit tea factory in afternoon.

This morning we will have free time to explore the beautiful town of Nuwara Eliya. Nuwara Eliya was a popular hill station during the British era and is situated in the cool highland air at 1890m. Known locally as 'Little England' it is dotted with British style houses and parks and features a golf club and a racecourse! Following lunch we will visit a nearby tea factory and learn about the process of tea production. *Mirage Kings Cottage (or similar) *

Day 10 Early morning to Horton Plains; walk to World's End viewpoint; to Bandarawela by train.

We have an early start this morning and take a 30km drive south to Horton Plains, a large plateau over 2,000m high, overlooked by the second and third highest peaks in Sri Lanka. The scenery is beautiful and the best way to explore is on foot. We take a guided walk through the rolling grasslands where we hope to see such as the Sambur and Purple Faced monkey. We also visit 'World's End' which is one of the most stunning sights in Sri Lanka where the ground drops 1050m to the plains. Following this we catch a train from the highest railway station in the country - within an hour and a half we drop from 1889m to 1097m. The train travels through the cloud forest into the tea plantations, with breath-taking views of the lush valley below. Please note that at times, particularly in peak season, the train may be extremely busy with standing room only. As a result you may get a choice between taking the train or going by road, and in extreme cases the leader may decide that the whole group should go by road and avoid the train. We get off at Bandarawela, a town relatively untouched by tourism. *Orient Hotel or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 11 Scenic drive through Ella Gap to Kataragama; game drive in Yala N.P.

Today we continue on to Ella Gap where we have spectacular views of the coastal plain nearly 1,000m below. Almost the entire southern part of the island is in view and on a particularly clear day the shimmering silver of the Indian Ocean is visible. Heading south out of the hills we travel to Kataragama on the plains; this is our base for visiting Sri Lanka's best known national park, Yala. The park is popular for elephant, leopard, bear, crocodile and Wild boar. At 97,800 hectares, this is the second largest of Sri Lanka's national parks. Its open undulating terrain made it famous for elephants for many years, but recently the park has also become better known for leopard. The park, which is primarily shrub jungle with several salt and fresh water lagoons, has one of the highest concentrations of leopard per square kilometre in the world. (Please note that the sanctuary may be closed for 4-6 weeks from September to October allowing the park authorities to check the welfare of the animals. We therefore go to an alternative area close by, usually Udawalawe National Park). *Mandara Rosen or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 12 Drive to Tangalle and walk through rice paddies; coastal drive to Ahangama; optional lunch at Tsunami house.

Today we leave for the coast, with its beautiful palm fringed bays. Stopping on the way at Hambantota and walking to a nearby farm house where you be offered tea in a coconut shell along with a local snack. We will mix with real Sri Lankan life and take part in some traditional Sri Lankan games, returning to our bus in tractors used by the farmers. We have the option of enjoying lunch at one of the houses that we built for Tsunami victims; this may be one of the best curries of your trip! Continuing on to Ahangama in the afternoon we arrive at our coastal hotel and you can relax for the rest of the day. *Insight Resort or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 13 Free day to relax on the beach or optional activities including whale watching (Nov to April).

Today is a free day to relax on the beach or by the hotel pool. There are also optional activities during the day including a boat ride through mangrove swamps to a cinnamon plantation or, from November to April you can go whale watching off Dondra head, one of the best places in the world for seeing Blue and Sperm whales. Huge pods of dolphins are also often seen playing alongside the boats. *Insight Resort or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 14 To Galle; visit old fort; transfer to Colombo.

We set off today and drive along the coastal road to the historic port of Galle, which dates back to the 17th century, and now a UNESCO world heritage site. On the way we stop at a small folk museum inspired by the local writer Martin Wickramasinghe. The museum is a typical house from the Koggala region and is set amongst beautiful gardens. We continue along the expressway to Colombo reaching our hotel in the late afternoon. *Hotel Mirage or alternative accommodation in the area*

Day 15 End Colombo.

The trip ends after breakfast. Those on the group flights will be taken to the airport in time for their flight home. **

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 2,049
Price Per Day: $ 128 per day
Check Availability
Checking price
Start DateFinish DateDouble StandardDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Sep-29-2019Oct-13-2019$ 2,179Yes8 spots left Reserve
Oct-09-2019Oct-23-2019$ 2,179No8 spots left Reserve
Oct-16-2019Oct-30-2019$ 2,479No8 spots left Reserve
Oct-23-2019Nov-06-2019$ 2,179Yes8 spots left Reserve
Nov-06-2019Nov-20-2019$ 2,479No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-17-2019Dec-01-2019$ 2,349Yes8 spots left Reserve
Nov-22-2019Dec-06-2019$ 2,179Yes8 spots left Reserve
Nov-27-2019Dec-11-2019$ 2,479No8 spots left Reserve
Dec-08-2019Dec-22-2019$ 2,049Yes8 spots left Reserve
Dec-22-2019Jan-05-2020$ 2,349Yes8 spots left Reserve
Dec-29-2019Jan-12-2020$ 2,249Yes8 spots left Reserve
Jan-05-2020Jan-19-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Jan-08-2020Jan-22-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Jan-19-2020Feb-02-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Jan-26-2020Feb-09-2020$ 2,579Yes7 spots left Reserve
Feb-05-2020Feb-19-2020$ 2,479Yes8 spots left Reserve
Feb-09-2020Feb-23-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Feb-19-2020Mar-04-2020$ 2,479No8 spots left Reserve
Mar-01-2020Mar-15-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Mar-15-2020Mar-29-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Mar-22-2020Apr-05-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Mar-29-2020Apr-12-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Apr-05-2020Apr-19-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Apr-12-2020Apr-26-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Apr-19-2020May-03-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Jun-21-2020Jul-05-2020$ 2,479No8 spots left Reserve
Jul-19-2020Aug-02-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Jul-26-2020Aug-09-2020$ 2,649No8 spots left Reserve
Aug-09-2020Aug-23-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Aug-16-2020Aug-30-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Aug-23-2020Sep-06-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Sep-06-2020Sep-20-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Sep-27-2020Oct-11-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Oct-04-2020Oct-18-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Oct-11-2020Oct-25-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Oct-25-2020Nov-08-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-01-2020Nov-15-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-08-2020Nov-22-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-22-2020Dec-06-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Nov-29-2020Dec-13-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Dec-06-2020Dec-20-2020$ 2,579No8 spots left Reserve
Dec-20-2020Jan-03-2021$ 2,799No8 spots left Reserve
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Stride Featured in

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13,051 Exodus Travels Travel Reviews & Ratings

99%
4.6 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 9,189
Great 3,171
Average 528
Disappointing 113
Terrible 50
Value
4.6
Guide
4.6
Activities
4.6
Lodging
4.6
Transportation
4.6
Meals
4.6

Discover Sri Lanka

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Discover Sri Lanka

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
The discover Sri Lanka trip offers a great mix of learning, seeing and
experiencing what Sri Lanka has to offer, mixed ample opportunities to simply
relax by the pool trying to decide what mixer to have with your large glass
of Arrack
I really enjoyed visiting Lions Rock, which after getting your breath back
after climbing all the stairs offers wonderful views of the surrounding area,
as well as an insight to Sri Lanka history.

I also enjoy the unscheduled visit to Little Adams peak, after rain meant
that Hortons plain was not viable, this was a great alternative and offered
beautiful views of Sri Lanka


Roshan, was great, he gave a very good in depth introductory talk on the
first day and provided us with an excellent history lesson of Sri Lanka, as
well as being very knowledgeable in terms of the fauna and flora of the
various regions.


There is very little street food or dining out culture in Sri Lanka with the
exception of Kandy and less so Nuwara Eliya, therefore you will be eating the
vast majority of your meals in hotels, with buffets being the easiest choice
but it does make it more expensive. A la Carter is an option at most places
but service tends to be slow and therefore often requires pre-ordering.


Due to the fact that so many meals are eaten at the hotels, to make things
easier I would have included these the trip price.

I think that during the introduction clients and guide should set up a
WhatsApp’s group, one for the sharing of info, but also to help with the
running of the trip, I.e. start times after free days extra or arrange
numbers for optional extras


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Discover Sri Lanka review

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
An excellent holiday with so much to see and do.
There were many inspitational moments but if I had to select one it would be
seeing the procession in Kandy. Excellently arranged by our guide even to
sorting our evening meaL. The fire dancers and highly decorated elephants
were a sight to behold. The drommers and dancers added to the occasion.I will
never forget it.


Roshan was superb. He was highly skilled in getting the group to see as much
as possible of his country. He was also quite relaxed letting us have enough
time to see the sights e.g. around the temples and the statues of the Buddha.
His instructions were always clear and explanatory. But most of all he was
fun! An absolute brilliant guide.


Take clothes to cover up but only needed for temples. But dress respectfully
at other times.


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Fabulous variety and rich culture

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
A very broad tour of the principal cultural and wildlife sights. Fantastic
sights ranging from Buddhist sculptures, tea plantations to leopards and
elephants in their natural habitat. Great food, landscapes and experiences.
The best moments include visiting the Buddha’s tooth relic in Kandy,
spotting leopards in Yalla National Park and travelling on a packed train
from the Hill country to the valley while viewing stunning scenery through
the (open) train carriage door.


Neelaka was consistently upbeat, exceptionally informative about the country
and always on hand to smooth out any issues and enable the tour to get on
with enjoying the country.


Be prepared for the rain and cold In Nuwara Eliya, to eating a lot of
delicious food and to open your eyes to an extremely wide range of scenery,
climate and wildlife.


We did travel in a large coach, unlike the usual minibuses used on other
Exodus holidays and occasionally this gave the impression that we were on a
coach tour rather than an adventure holiday.
Most hotels were very good and the food in some - especially Sirigaya,
Manders Rosen and Bandarawela was excellent. Some welcome rest time was
built in and we loved lazing around for one whole day at the coast.


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Sri Lanka Summer 2018

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
In 2 weeks we managed to see most of the main sights in Sri Lanka. It was
going full tilt mostly staying one or two nights in each place. We really
enjoyed all the places that we visited and found them very interesting (apart
from the gem museum which was very dull and boring and high pressure sales).
The accommodation was more luxurious than we expected, having been on tours
with other companies. The nice thing about this was that almost all hotels
had pools and very pleasant surroundings. The downside of this was that they
were often outside the population centres so that you forced to eat there and
had less scope for exploring local towns and villages and using their shops
and restaurants. It also therefore added to the expense of the trip. The
transport was comfortable (coach) and the driver did a really good job in
such adverse and hectic driving conditions.
Our favourite moment was watching the elephants splashing and playing at the
waterhole at Kaudulla national park. This trip was optional but we all did
it. It was actually a better trip than Yala which is included in the
itinerary. We saw crocodiles there which don't move (no leopard) and loads of
birds at both but there was more birdlife at Kaudulla.
The most enjoyable activity was walking on Horton Plains, looking at plants,
wildlife and the amazing view.


Our group leader was excellent. He went out of his way to explain about the
history and natural history of the island, using his own visual aids! Nothing
was too much trouble and he was constantly looking out for our welfare, from
health and safety to making sure that we were served the drinks we had
ordered.
He also helped us to organise our onward travel at the end of the Exodus
trip.


Sri Lanka is an amazing place full of friendly people but in most places
there are no pavements or streetlights so if you are out after dark, take a
torch and/or flag down a tuk tuk (very cheap).

Not all ATMs will give very much money - some restrict it to less than 40,000
rupees (£200). Hatton National Bank (HNB) will give you up to 200,000 rupees
and charge 200.


Sri Lanka is a fantastic and varied country and 2 weeks is a very short time
to spend there.


Read more

Experiencing this ‘pearl of the Indian Ocean’

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
In 15 days we enjoyed many varied experiences that enabled us to gain new
insights into this exciting, challenging place.
Our accomodation was mostly very luxurious, the food tasty if somewhat
predictable in hotels; eating food prepared and served by locals in villages
was enjoyable as was playing some traditional village games. Cycling in the
countryside and taking to the water gave us a different perspective again.
July was a great time to travel and we saw very little rain ; the
temperatures on the west coast were high but the hill country pleasantly
cooler - no need for jumpers or coats at all.
Although we missed seeing a leopard at Yala N.P. elephants, warthogs, water
buffalo, spotted deer, monkeys, crocodiles and many different birds made up
for that. We even saw a mongoose.
Elephants coming right up to our hotel’s electric fence was a highlight.
Walking on Horton’s Plains was special as was exploring the ancient sites
of Polonnaruwa and Sigiriya and watching festivals and ceremonies.


We had an excellent guide who gave us relevant detail about the country’s
cultural, political, socio-economic and geographical situation. We felt we
learned much about this fascinating country.
However, the amount of plastic waste littering the country was a cause for
concern.


Go with an open mind but don’t expect to be able to do much walking in
smaller towns or on beaches near Colombo, which are polluted and not always
accessible. Tuk Tuks are the easiest form of transport. Check whether you
need to worry about dengue fever when you travel. We didn’t in July so
could have had more short sleeves and shorts.


Our group was very cooperative, welcoming and mostly like minded although we
came from 4 different countries.


Read more

Sri Lanka

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
We had a great holiday and were very well looked after by our tour Guide:
Ruwan Balasuriya
When the elephants swam across the lake and came ashore. They were within a
few metres of the hotel. Absolutely wonderful!


Fantastic. He took great care of us and was a wonderful source of information
about all aspects of Sri Lanka


Read more

Details

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Group Size:

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 18

Accomodations

14 nights comfortable hotels, all en suite
Travel by private bus
Additional travel by train, bicycle and jeep
Some long drives

Age Notes

Min. Age: 16

Additional Information:

  • 14 nights comfortable hotels, all en suite
  • Travel by private bus
  • Additional travel by train, bicycle and jeep
  • Some long drives

Trip ID#:

exodus-AIL

Trip Excludes

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations

Meals Included:

Dinner: All breakfasts and 1 lunch is included. We suggest allowing about £15-£17 (approx. US$24 - US$27.50) per day for all other meals. Sri Lankan cuisine is a fascinating reflection of the island’s heritage; there is a unique fusion of fresh local produce with spices brought to the island over the centuries by Malays, Arabs, Indians as well as the Dutch, Portuguese and English. Despite (or perhaps because of) these influences, Sri Lankan cuisine is often referred to as simply ‘Rice and Curry’. This is the staple dish in most restaurants and is usually a serving of rice accompanied by assorted meat and vegetable curries as well as various pickles, ‘sambols,’ and a handful of tiny poppadum’s – all using the contrasting flavours of coconut, chilli, curry leaves, cinnamon and garlic. Vegetarians are well catered for but please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests. Please note that in Sri Lanka the availability of certain products is minimal or non-existent, for example wheat or dairy-free. Please be prepared for this and you may need to bring these from home. Spicier food can be avoided easily and lots of the hotels will serve Western options alongside traditional food.

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