First Day Welcome to Sri Lanka and you will be picked up by our english speaking chauffeur and head on to Sigiriya Lunch at a restaurant in Sigiriya or Habarana (Payable directly). In the evening leave for a jeep safari at Minneriya National Park. The park, nourished by an ancient man-made tank provides shelter for troupes of Toque monkeys, Sambar deer as well as leopards, elephants and various specis of rare and beautiful birds including the Little Cormorants and Painted Storks to name a few. Return to Sigiriya hotel for overnight. What is today a pristine wildlife kingdom, Yala was home to a thriving civilization, dating back to the glory days of Sri Lankan Kings. Hundreds of tanks, most in dilapidated state today, are testimony to an agri-based civilization. The large, thriving tanks now provide a lifeline to the animal kingdom, especially during dry season.
Day Two Breakfast at the hotel and head to Dambulla. Visit the Dambulla Cave Temple. It lies atop a massive hill on the edge of the town is one of the eight UNESCO world heritage sites in the country and is renowned for its unique mural paintings and sculptures and In the afternoon climb the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sigiriya Rock Fortress. This ancient rock fortress from the 5th century gives an amazing view of the Cultural Triangle. The marvellous rock fortress of Sigiriya is a rare jewel among the many treasures in Sri Lanka. The site was the domain of King Kashyapa whose aim was to build an impregnable fortress and within it, a heavenly abode. Overnight at a hotel in Sigiriya
Day three After breakfast will Continue your journey to Kandy with en-route stops. Visit an exotic Spice Garden in Matale where you can enjoy a garden tour and a cooking demonstration to understand the taste and aroma of the world famous spices. It is quite touristy and most love it.Also take time to visit the Batik factory to see the ancient art of dyeing cloth. Dutch traders were so impressed by this craft that in 1835, they brought Batik artists back to Holland with them when they returned from trading trips. Arrive in the Hill country capital Kandy, which is the last stronghold of Sinhala Kings and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Early evening witness a cultural dance performance. Overnight at a hotel in Kandy.
Day Four After breakfast at hotel visit the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic. Located at the heart of the Kandy town, right before the green waters of the Nuwara wewa, the temple’s white washed walls with tops shaped like that of clouds surround the temple grounds. Within the wall, the ancient temple stands majestically surrounded by a moat. Its golden roof gleaming in the sunlight as white-clad pilgrims bearing lotus blossoms throng to revere the sacred tooth-relic of Lord Buddha. Then wander around the lake and the streets of Kandy getting a feel of this wonderful city. For those interested in shopping for gems, antiques, clothes and leather use our shopping guide and explore the local markets and shops. Kandy excursions: – Gem Museum and Factory tour – Art and Craft Village – Visit the beautiful Royal Botanical Gardens and see its treasures of tropical flora. (Keep an eye out for the amazing fig tree!) Return to hotel in Kandy for an overnight stay.
Day Five Breakfast at the hotel and set off to Dickoya with en route stops in Nuwara Eliya. Dubbed the ‘Little England of Sri Lanka’, Nuwara Eliya is located in the thick, misty hills of this paradise isle. Take a tour around the city this afternoon to wander the streets of Nuwara Eliya. Arrive in time for a superb three course lunch overlooking the beautiful Castlereagh Lake. The chef will discuss with you your evening meal. Put your sneakers on and stride out into the picturesque tea country. Enjoy the best cream tea in Sri Lanka. Overnight at a hotel in Dickoya.
Day Six Spend the morning, seeing how Ceylon tea is made and learn the art of becoming a good tea taster. Visit the nearby Warleigh Church built in 1878 by early British planters. It is situated in one of the most stunning locations. Stroll through the tea gardens and visit the local tea pluckers’ crèche that is supported by Ceylon Tea Trails and the MJF Foundation. Overnight at a hotel in Dickoya.
Day Seven Take a stop at Kataragama. Kataragama is home to one of the most important religious sites in Sri Lanka that draws pilgrims from various faiths. Arrive at Weerawila where you will stay in mud huts. It’s a truly magical location and experience. Fall in love with their delicious organic vegetable curries with string hoppers. All food served here is made from home grown vegetables or are locally sourced. Overnight at Weerawila.
Day Eight Enjoy a traditional Sri Lanka breakfast! Then explore the city on a bike, taking stops for tea or sightseeing and making friends. The serenity of the night time in Weerawila is unparalleled to any other with the un-spoilt sounds of the wilderness. You can either enjoy your night by the lake or go out on a boat ride and catch some fish for a BBQ. Overnight at Weerawila.
Day Nine Breakfast at hotel and proceed to Tangalle with en-route stop at Bundala National Park, Mulgirigala Temple and Rekawa Turtle Hatchery. First stop is at Bundala National Park. A one-of-a-kind location where the land, sea and wetlands meet, Bundala is particularly popular among bird watchers as it is a Migration Site for migratory birds. The park is home to a diverse variety of wildlife including Spotted deer, the rare pangolin and playful Grey Langur monkeys. Then head to Mulgirigala Temple. The walk up the 200m high rock to get to the cave temples can be a challenging task, but fret not; along the climb are a few locations where the weary travellers may rest before journeying onward, comprising of terraces with small temples, Buddha statues, pools of water and the breath-taking views of the surrounding countryside. On one of the terraces, lies the main cave temple, notable for its Dutch tiles and the antique wooden chest as well as for the discovery of the ‘Rosetta Stone’ that enabled the translation of ancient Sri Lankan texts. The last stop for the day will be in Rekawa to visit the Turtle Hatchery and the conservation centre. Protected by the Turtle Conservation Project since 1996, the sanctuary itself is quite distinct from turtle hatcheries as it protects the various nesting sites from predators. The site offers the chance for the visitors to watch the moving sight of the turtle mother laying her much treasured eggs into the hole she digs in the wet sand from her flippers. Arrive in Tangalle for an overnight stay at hotel.
Day Ten If you wish you can head down to the beach early morning and help the local fisherman pull in their daily catch. It’s now time to learn about traditional Sri Lankan village cuisine. Engage in a traditional cooking lesson with the executive chef at the Ranna212 where you will witness a demonstration of local cuisine and other special dishes on request. (supplements will apply). Overnight at a hotel in Tangalle.
Day Eleven After breakfast will proceed to Galle. In the afternoon stroll through the streets of the UNESCO World Heritage Site – Galle Fort. It is considered as one of the best examples of a living fortified city built by Europeans in South and South East Asia. Use our map as well as our shopping and restaurant guide to discover the best of this city. Overnight at a hotel in Galle.
Day Twelve After breakfast you will be dropped at the airport and time will be decided upon the flight times.
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