Partake in a rare opportunity to experience the Earth’s largest community of land and sea mammals. Sri Lanka is a small island where you’ll find nine national parks, home to a variety of flora and fauna. Most of these parks are famous for Asian elephants while Yala and Wilpattu are the habitats of leopards and many other species. The package mainly focuses on the larger national parks combined with the natural, scenic beauty of the island and this amazing adventure tour in Sri Lanka.
This is one of the best Sri Lanka holiday deals, designed for 13 nights/14 days. As we always cater to our valuable clients, simply request a custom tour to meet your needs. Our schedule is your schedule!
Negombo is at the heart of Sri Lanka’s fishing industry. Catamarans and the ocean is the backdrop of Negombo. The city is renowned for its fish market, quite possibly the island’s best. Shrines and picturesque churches dominate the city due to its Roman Catholic population. St Mary’s Church is a most impressive building with its pastel colours and amazing ceiling paintings.
Negombo offers some of the better beaches in west Sri Lanka delighting tourists stopping over for the day en route to or from the airport.
Check in to your hotel and relax. Evening visit Muthurajawela Mash and join for a boat ride in Dutch channel. Overnight stay at the hotel.
The park is located 30km west of Anuradhapura and spans the border between the North Central and North Western Province. It is bordered by the Modaragam Aru in the south, the Kala Oya in the north, and is bordered by the Indian Ocean in the west. The Wilpattu National Park is the largest national park in the area with 131, 693 hectares. It is ranges from sea level to 152 metres elevation.
Participate in a Jeep Safari across the national park and take a winning photo of any leopards you see on your journey!
Afterwards, check in to your camping site in Wilpattu or proceed to Anuradhapura for hotel residency.
Anuradhapura is one of main ancient kingdoms in Sri Lanka which dates back to the 5th century BC. Visit all the ruins of the kingdom and sites of special interest, including the sacred Sri Maha Bodiya and Isurumuniya Temples. This sacred city was established around a cutting from the ‘Tree of Enlightenment’, the Buddha’s fig tree, brought there in the 3rd century BC. by Sanghamitta, the Buddhist founder of Bikhhuni Sangha (Order of Nuns). Anuradhapura was a Ceylonese political and religious capital that flourished for 1,300 years and abandoned after an invasion in 993 AD. Hidden away in dense jungle for many years, the splendid site, with its palaces, monasteries and monuments, is now accessible once again.
Then proceed to check in at you Habarana hotel for a leisurely evening, spent reminiscing over the day’s amazing events. If you are interested you can participate in an elephant ride, as well.
Overnight stay at a hotel in Habarana.
Minneriya National Park is located between Habarana and Polonnaruwa. Covered an area of 8890 hectares park is an ideal place for elephant and leopard watching. The vegetation of this park is evergreen and scrub varietals. Its main feature is the 3rd-century Minneriya tank. During the dry season Minneriya tank reservoir becomes the ideal place to observe natural wild life. Minneriya National Park is home to 24 mammal, 160 bird, 75 butterfly, 9 amphibian, 26 fish, and 25 reptile species. What an eclectic habitat!
At Polonnaruwa (UNESCO World Heritage Site) you will have the option for a bicycle ride through the traditional villages of Polonnaruwa while visiting historical places.
Polonnaruwa (218 km from Colombo) was established as the capital in the 11th century when Anuradhapura was abandoned due to foreign invasion. A dominant feature of the city is the vast 2103-hectare Parakrama Samudra Lake. The palace complex of King Parakrama Bahu is a medieval stronghold, featuring moats, walls, guardhouses, bathing ponds, and the impressive thick-walled, multi-storey castle.
Visit: the Atadage (Temple of the Relic of the tooth of the Buddha built by King Vijayabahu), Gal Potha, the Satmahal Prasada, two Hindu shrines known as the Siva Devale and the Alahanana Pirivena, a 12th-century monastic university. Take in the Lankatilleke Shrine, the Gal Vihare, which is one of Sri Lanka’s most unforgettable monuments – a group of three colossal Buddha images in seated, standing, and reclining postures is carved on a huge rock face, with fluid grace and life-like expressions.
Then proceed to the hotel in Habarana for an overnight stay there.
Sigiriya (166 km from Colombo) is the magnificent 5th century AD rock fortress citadel of a fugitive king, where history merges with melodrama. A fresco gallery of shapely bejewelled maidens still glows with vibrant colour. These paintings are believed to depict the “Apsaras” or spirits and some say they represent lightning and clouds. Another distinctive feature of Sigiriya is the Mirror Wall, located just below the paintings. The well-polished surface is covered with writings in the form of poetry known as “Sigiri Graffiti”. The Lion Staircase leads to the summit and the special feature of this is the massive Lion Paw carved out of rock. The brick wall is still preserved in its original form. Under the Cultural Triangle Project, UNESCO has taken to Sigriya’s current excavation and, according to various sources, is most likely to be declared as a Wonder of the World.
We proceed to Matale and walk around bountiful spice gardens.
Visit a special garden in Matale to see Sri Lanka’s famous spices. Just 25 km from the hill capital of Kandy, the Matale spice gardens are amongst the best on the island. You will be introduced to different spices and shown how some of these spices are grown and processed.
Proceed to Kandy and check in to the hotel. Evening visit to the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic.
115 km from Colombo, Kandy is Sri Lanka’s scenic highland capital, and last barricade of the Sri Lankan kings against European conquest. Its 16-19th-century relics are the sanctuary of traditional culture, and the island’s most visited tourist destination.
Kandy’s main attraction is the Dalada Maligawa, the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic of the Buddha, brought to Sri Lanka in the 4th century AD. This sacred relic has since been symbol for its sovereign rulers and is always enshrined in great splendour. If you are visiting Kandy during July-August, the Esala Perahera is definitely a must see. Sometimes called “Asia’s grandest pageant”, this spectacular annual event is held to honour the Sacred Tooth Relic of the Buddha and to obtain blessings of the guardian deities of Sri Lanka.
Overnight stay at the hotel in Kandy
Six kilometres from Kandy, at Peradeniya, are the magnificent 57-hectare Royal Botanical Gardens. Landscaped in 1832, they are amongst the finest tropical flora gardens in the world: fine collections of orchids; aromatic spices; medicinal herbs; palms and rare, endangered plant species.
Optional: You can join a trek in the Udawatte Kele Sanctuary, which is just above the Royal Palace of Temple of Tooth Relic on this day. If you are a nature lover, the Udawatte Kele Sanctuary is a densely verdant nature reserve located within the Kandy district with a wealth of indigenous and native plants.
Then we proceed to Nuwara Eliya which is famous as “Little England” with its colonial style city.
Nuwara Eliya, meaning “city on the plain (table land)” or “city of light”, is a town in the Central Highlands of Sri Lanka with a picturesque landscape and temperate climate. Nuwara Eliya’s climate lent itself to becoming the prime sanctuary of the British civil servants and planters in Ceylon. Nuwara Eliya was also a hill country retreat where the British colonialists could immerse in their pastimes such as fox hunting.
Due to the high altitude, Nuwara Eliya has a much cooler climate than the lowlands of Sri Lanka, with a mean annual temperature of 16°C. But the temperature changes and sometimes it can be as low as 3°C. In the winter months it is quite cold at night, and there can even be frost, although it rapidly warms as the tropical sun climbs higher during the day.
Check in the hotel and overnight stay in Nuwara Eliya.
After breakfast at hotel proceed to Horton Plains.
The Horton Plain Plateau is a secluded wilderness sanctuary 2130 m high and offers one of Sri Lanka’s most unforgettable views. Here the land plunges down into a gorge to the southern foothills, and, on clear days, a glimpse of the sea more than 80 km away is even possible. The Horton Plains are the habitat of giant rhododendron (an evergreen shrub with large clusters of trumpet shaped flowers), tree fern primrose, daffodil orchids, and birds such as the Sri Lankan Whistling Thrush and Arrenga, the Shaggy Bear Monkey and the Blue Mormon Butterfly, plus many other native and endangered montane species.
Traditionally called ‘Maha Eliya,’ Horton Plains was founded by Sir Robert Horton, British Governor 1831-37, which was then established as a nature reserve in 1969 and a national park in 1988.
In the evening, go for a boat ride at Gregory Lake, Nuwara Eliya.
Overnight stay at the same hotel, Nuwara Eliya.
After a hotel breakfast, proceed to Rathnapura via Kithulgala.
Kithulgala is famous for white water rafting!
Proceed to Rathnapura, famous Sri Lankan precious stones.
It is the centre of the long-established gem industry you’ll find, amongst others, splendid examples of rubies and sapphires. Apart from the mines, the city is also known for its rice and fruit cultivation and export. Large plantations of tea and rubber surround the city. Tea grown in this region is called ‘low-country tea’. There is a well-established tourism industry in Rathnapura. Sinharaja Forest Reserve is especially popular amongst tourists.
Check in to the hotel in Rathnapura and spend the evening at leisure.
After a hotel breakfast, visit Sinharaja Rain Forest, a lowland rain forest situated across several administrative Sri Lankan districts. It is one of the least tampered with and biologically unique forests in Sri Lanka. The Sinharaja Forest was declared a National Wilderness Area under the National Heritage Wilderness Area Act in 1988 and later a World Heritage Site. It is Sri Lanka’s first formally esteemed distinction. Sinharaja Forest comprises continuous ridges, aligned approximately in an east-west direction that lies between the tributaries of the Kalu Kanga in the north and the Gin Ganga in the south.
Enjoy an evening visit in surrounding Rathnapura, to see the tea plantations and waterfalls.
Overnight stay at the same hotel.
After a hotel breakfast, we proceed to Udawalawe.
Udawalawe National Park is renowned for its outstanding scenic beauty and wealth of faunal species, particularly mammals and birds. It is a famous tourist attraction throughout the year for its unique fauna and flora. The park is situated in the arid zone and conditions of the physical features are characterized by an annual dry season coinciding with the southwest monsoon. The predominant ecosystem of the park area is the forest area with scattered grasslands and thorny shrubs. There are herds of elephants and the populations of sambhar, spotted deer, barking deer, wild boar, and water buffalo are gradually re-establishing themselves.
Check in to the hotel and go for a jeep safari in the evening, Udawalewe National Park is famous for its large populations of mammals and birds.
After breakfast in the hotel in Udawalewe, proceed to Yala National Park where you will find the highest density of the leopards in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka’s oldest national park, Yala National Park is located in the south-east corner of Sri Lanka and has an area of about 127,000 hectares. Major activities include bird and game watching, especially elephants, which are best seen from October to December. It is 305 km from Colombo and access to the park is via Rathnapura, Tissamaharama. Yala is by far the most popular national park in Sri Lanka, renowned for its wildlife variety, largely characteristic of arid zone tropical thorn forest and fine coastline and associated coral reefs.
Overnight stay at a hotel in Yala or Tissamaharama.
After breakfast in hotel proceed to a beach hotel in Ahangama.
Of course you will have different beach options, as you are travelling through the Southern Coast of Sri Lanka.
Tangalle, Unawatuna, Mirrissa, Galle, Hikkaduwa, Benota are just a few of the incredible beach options you have.
If you are staying Near Mirissa/Galle, you have a whale watching opportunity, depending on the season.
Today is the last day of the tour. After breakfast, proceed to the airport via Colombo, which is the commercial heart of Sri Lanka.
******* Camping is Available at the Minneriya / Udawalewe / Yala national parks.