01Arrive in Sri Lanka
Welcome to Sri Lanka. Upon arrival this afternoon, you will be met and greeted and transferred to your hotel located approximately 30 minutes from the airport.
Depending on your flight arrival time enjoy a mini city tour in Negombo.
Negombo is a famous fishing village North of Colombo, with a Dutch built Canal. The canal itself is a hive of activity with fishermen traveling up and down in their gaily-painted boats. On the shores of the canal you will find many homes and many species of birds including spectacular Kingfishers. Catamaran trips in the sea and boat trips in canal can be organized. From November to April, diving facilities are available in this quaint village. The streets on either side of the Hotels are dotted with Souvenir Shops, Restaurants etc.
Enjoy a boat ride in Muthurajawela.
Muthurajawela is a Wetland area of 2,000 hectares between Colombo and Negombo, set aside as a unique tropical wetland, with its flora and fauna of marshes, waters and mangrove forests.Visitors can set sail on guided boat rides through the different ecological settings of the marsh sanctuary and the lagoon, or walk in nature trails and watch birds. Some 40% of the vertebrates of Sri Lanka are recorded here. Plant life is also rich-the marsh vegetation includes mangroves, ferns and many grasses and sedges. Birds are numerous. Commonly sighted species includes Cormorants, Storks, Bee-eaters, Kingfishers, Grey Herons, Purple Coots, Little Green Herons, Yellow Bitterns, Black Bitterns, Moorhens and White-breasted Waterhens.
Afterwards, proceed to Walawwa located in Kotugoda.
Dinner & Overnight stay
02Transfer to Sigiriya
Enjoy a scrumptious breakfast at your Hotel. Take the scenic drive to Sigiriya (approximately 3.5 hour drive)
Climb the Sigiriya rock fortress.
Sigiriya is a “World Heritage Site” and the 5th Century “Fortress in the Sky” which is perhaps the most fantastic single wonder of the Island. It is also known as Lion Rock because of the huge lion that used to stand at the entrance to the Palace on the summit of the 600-foot high rock. On its summit are the foundations of the Royal Palace, Water Tanks to supply water and all other buildings and at the edges the guardhouses. On one of the stairways the only known ancient work of Sinhala secular painting survived in the form of Frescoes of 21 life sized damsels in all the freshness and delicacy of their original color. The Water Gardens, Fountain Garden, summerhouse, Boulder Gardens and the Caves with the enclosed are should not be missed.
Proceed to Cinnamon Lodge for lunch. Transfer to your charming boutique hotel.
Dinner & Overnight stay Water Garden Resort, Villa
03Proceed to visit the Polonnaruwa ancient city after the breakfast.
Polonnaruwa is another “World Heritage Site” was the Capital of Sri Lanka from 11th - 13th Centuries, contains some splendid and spectacular statues. Lankatilake, Tivanka and Thuparama are the most beautiful and largest Image Houses and Tivanka has the best example of frescoes of the Polonnaruwa period. Rankoth Vehera and Kirivehera are well preserved large stupas, and Gal Vihare - a rock shrine, has four Buddha statues, two seated, one standing and one reclining and Parakrama Bahu statue are examples of Sinhalese stone carver. The Vata-da-ge is a unique creation of the Sri Lankan artists. Polonnaruwa - the medieval capital was fortified with inner & outer moats and inner & outer walls. The Parakrama Samudra is on the western side of the city. The Royal Palace, Audience Hall and other buildings in the inner city were enclosed by another tall wall.
Lunch at the Jaga foods restaurant. In the afternoon engage in an afternoon game drive at the Minneriya national park. This National Park with 8889 hectares in extent is famous for it large population of elephants in herds of 100 to 150 roaming in the jungle and seen in the catchment area of the lake. Entrance is at Ambagaswewa about 6 km from Habarana on the main Habarana Polonnaruwa road. Office is by the side of the main road. Elephants, about 300 wild elephants, wild buffaloes, wild boar, spotted deer, sloth bear, Sambhur, leopards, crocodiles, jackals, 9 kinds of amphibians, 25 kinds of reptiles, 160 species of birds, 26 varieties of fish, 78 varieties of butterflies are recorded from the Minneriya National Park.
Transfer back to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the Water Garden Resort, Villa
04Transfer to Kandy after breakfast.
Drive to Kandy (approximately 2.5 hours). Visit the sacred temple of the tooth relic.
Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic - ever since 4th Century A.D, when the Buddha's Tooth was brought to Sri Lanka hidden from sacrilegious hands in an Orissan princess' hair, the Relic has grown in repute and holiness in Sri Lanka and throughout the Buddhist world. It is considered Sri Lanka's most prized possession.
Walk through to Royal bar restaurant for lunch. You will enjoy having lunch here as it has a colonial type of atmosphere.
After lunch Witness a cultural dancing show. Sri Lanka, a country rich with culture & tradition offers a very vibrant and unique show of Sri Lankan traditional dances, in the form of Kandy cultural show. The dance form "Salupliya" depicts several demons, "Thelme" is a vibrant expression of low country rhythm, Fire and Harvest dances are accompanied by Ceremonial Drums and the Drum Orchestra rises and falls to a lively tempo. As many as 12 different folk and traditional dances are performed by the Kandy lake club dance troop within the span of one hour. Afterwards, take a step away from the crowds and go behind stage to meet the dancers who you saw on stage this evening.
Proceed to Madulkelle Tea & eco lodge.
Dinner & Overnight at the Madulkelle Tea & Eco Lodge Deluxe Lodge
05Breakfast at Hotel. Proceed for hiking in the Knuckles mountain range.
The Knuckles Range covers a rugged and still largely untouched area of great natural beauty and biodiversity. The steeply shelving mountain terrain, reaching 1863m at its highest point, includes stands of rare dwarf cloud forest, and is home to Leopard, various species of deer, monkeys and giant squirrels. The areas of range above 1000m have recently declared a World Heritage conservation Area.
We’ll take along a pack lunch today.
Transfer back to the hotel & relax.
Dinner & Overnight stay the Madulkelle Tea & Eco Lodge Deluxe Lodge
06After the breakfast at the hotel proceed to Peradeniya railway station.
Take the scenic train ride from Peradeniya to Nanu Oya. On this day you’ll embark a journey through tea plantations and the mystique hill country side. This will be one of the most exciting train journeys that you’ll get to experience. Your lunch will be served during the train ride & the journey will last for more than 2 ½ hours.
Visit a tea plantation factory in the afternoon.
Ceylon tea is perhaps the most well-known and famous tea in the world. As the most important export of Sri Lanka, we’ll take you behind the scenes of this world-renowned product. You’ll meet the people who pick it, learn about their lives, walk through the tea plantations, visit a processing factory, and enjoy a cup straight from where it’s made. With your guide as a translator feel free to ask them questions about their lives and what it’s like to work in a tea plantation.
Continue your journey to your colonial hotel.
Dinner & Overnight stay at the Grand Hotel, Deluxe Room
07After the breakfast at the hotel proceed to Horton Plains.
Enjoy a day hike in the Horton Plains (It’s advisable to take a packed breakfast today to enable an early start
20 miles (32 km) from Nuwara Eliya via Ambewela and Pattipola, is the Horton Plains only 3160 hectares in extent. Known to Sri Lankans as Mahaeliya, it became Horton Plains after Sir Robert Horton, British Governor from 1831- 1837.Horton Plains became a Nature Reserve in 1969 and upgraded as a National Park in 1988 due to its unique watershed and bio-diversity valuesIts flora has high level of endemism. The hills are covered with diverse wet low evergreen forest with even large trees grown flattened to the ground on the higher windswept slopes. Horton Plains harbours 52 species of resident birds and 11 species of migrant birds .More than 2,000 to 3,000 Sambhur, Bear Monkey, Leopard, Barking Deer, Giant Squirrel, Fishing Cat, Wild Boar and Hares roam in the forests and grasslands but only seldom they could be seen other than the Sambhur in the evening and morning.
Lunch will be at a local restaurant.
Enjoy the dinner at the Hill club hotel in a wonderful colonial atmosphere of a bygone era. Smart attire required for dinner !.
Overnight stay at the Grand Hotel, Deluxe Room
08Transfer to Gal Oya.
Take the 4 hour scenic drive to Gal Oya. Lunch will be at a local restaurant enroute. Proceed to the lodge check in & relax.
Dinner & Overnight stay at the Gal Oya Lodge, Bungalow Bed Room
09Proceed early morning for the safari at the Gal Oya national park.
GALOYA NATIONAL PARK- is 230 miles on the Colombo, Kandy, Mahiyangana, Mahaoya and Ampara road, which is the shortest out of the 3 routes. This National Park declared in 1954 is 25,900 hectares in extent and covers most of the catchment area of the Senanayake Samudra The areas to visit by Jeep are limited from Ali-wanguwa to Kossapola and from Mullegama to Kebellabokka. The main method of travel is by boat from the Bund of the reservoir to observe wild animals and birds in the open areas along the lake. Permits and Trackers could be obtained from the Wild Life Office at Inginiyagala close to the Lake. (Check the availability of the boat before sending tourists).Wild Elephants, Wild Buffalo, Wild Boar, Spotted Deer, Barking Deer, Sambhur, are the main animals. Leopard and Sloth Bear are rare and difficult to see. Many species of birds, specially nesting birds on the dead trees in the water could be seen
Enjoy a picnic lunch inside the park.
Experience a Boat Safari on Gal Oya Lake, which is the biggest in Sri Lanka. A great opportunity to observe the wildlife from the stunning Gal Oya Lake: including crocodiles, deer, elephants and many rare and endemic species of birds. This experience is the only one in Sri Lanka that enables you to spot wildlife from the water and to truly immerse yourself in the animals’ habitats. You may be lucky enough to see elephants swimming between islands or bathing at the lake’s edge. Today you’ll ride through the national park and embark on a boat. Cruising over the lake make sure to keep a sharp eye out for the wildlife!
Lunch, Dinner & Overnight stay at the Gal Oya Lodge, Bungalow Bed Room
10After the breakfast at the hotel meet the “Veddah” the tribal community of Gal oya.
Sri Lanka's indigenous inhabitants, the Veddas ('forest-dwellers') preserve a direct line of descent from the island's original Neolithic community dating from at least 16,000 BC. With the impending extinction of Wanniya-laeto culture, we stand to lose a rich body of indigenous lore and living ecological wisdom. Luxe Asia invites the Chief of Sri Lanka’s indigenous Vedda tribe to take you on a walk through the jungles of his ancestors. Enjoy nature as he brings the forest alive by explaining his tribes’ uses of medicinal plants, ancient hunting grounds, cave dwellings and an insight on how the hunter gathers lived in the jungles of Gal Oya. Luxe Asia and Gal Oya donate proceeds from this tour into a fund to support the local tribe in an ethical and community needs based manner.
Lunch, Dinner & Overnight stay Gal Oya Lodge, Bungalow Bed Room
11Transfer to Tangalle OR return to airport for International flight
After breakfast drive to Tangalle (approximately 5.5 hours). Check into the beautiful Anantara Tangalle resort. Rest of the day at leisure.
Breakfast & Overnight stay Anantara Tangalle, Premium Ocean View
OR if you do not wish to do the beach portion you can choose to return to the airport for your international onward bound flight
12Relaxing beach stay
Breakfast & Overnight stay at the Anantara Tangalle, Premium Ocean View
13Relaxing beach stay.
Breakfast & Overnight stay at the Anantara Tangalle, Premium Ocean View
14Drive to the airport via Galle to connect with the departure flight.
The Dutch Fort - Galle - The South Coast’s major city is Galle, whose oldest landmark is the massive Portuguese and Dutch Fort which is a “World Heritage Site” in which the central city is contained. But the city may be much older. Some scholars believe it to be the “Tarshish” of the Old Testament, to which King Solomon sent his merchant vessels, and to which Jonah fled from the Lord.
Today, the 90-acre Galle Fort shows no evidence of the Portuguese founders. The Dutch incorporated the Portuguese northern wall in a great rampart in 1663. A second, taller wall was built inside of it. Between the two walls, a covered passage connected the central bastion with the Fort’s two half bastion’s overlooking the sea.
The Dutch also installed a sophisticated drainage system, complete with brick-lined underground sewers that were flushed twice a day by the high and low tides. The original gate to the fort was by the harbour. It is still there, marked by the British Coat-of-arms on the front and the Dutch V.O.C. (Vereenigde Oost Indische Compagnie) with the Coat-of-arms with a rooster crest, is on the inner side of the Fort.
The drive time from Gal Oya to Colombo including a visit to Galle will be approximately 5½ -6 hours.
Transferred to the airport for your international flight.
End of tour…