12-day tour excursion: Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya, Veddas tribe, elephants, waterfalls, tea plantations, nine arch bridge, Ambuluwawa, botanical garden, Sinharaja, Galle...
This is one of the most outstanding excursion programs allowing you to see all must-see attractions of Sri Lanka (Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya Lion Rock, Buddha's Tooth Temple, Kandy, Veddas tribe,Tea Plantations, Ambuluwawa, Ella, Nuwara Eliya) in 12 days.
"It is my pleasure to help people around the world to get better understanding about Sri-Lanka and Vietnam"
Highlights of the tour:
- Wilpattu National Park
- 2600-year-old city of Anuradhapura
- Sigiriya - a fortress on a cliff, according to legend, once belonged to the king of demons Ravana (from the epic of Ramayana)
- Buddha Tooth Temple - one of the most sacred places for Buddhists around the world
- Visiting Veddas tribe
- 700-year-old Royal Botanic Garden in Peradeniya, where you can see trees planted by the last Russian emperor, many kings and presidents
- Tea Plantations, where the best tea is grown in the world
- Nuwara Eliya
- Ambuluwawa - the temple of Four Religions
- Nine Arch Bridge, Little Adam's Peak
- Jeep Safari
Other attractions (optional):
- Ayurvedic Garden
- Village tour, immersion in authentic village life and cooking class
- Golden and Cave Temples in Dambulla
- Aluvihara Temple, where Tripitaka (Buddhist holy canon) was recorded in caves by monks and the ancient technique of writing on palm leaves is revealed
- Tea Factory
- Horton Plains and World's end
- Elephant Orphanage
- Ornithological Tour: Bird Watching
- Tea Ceremony and Tea Tasting
- National Dance Show
Detailed tour program:
Day 1: Wilpattu National Park
Wilpattu Park is one of the least popular and most unspoilt national parks on the island. That is why there is the maximum chance to see leopards and Himalayan bears.
Day 2: Anuradhapura
Abayagiriya Stupa, Ranweli Stupa, Jetawana Stupa (Anuradhapura)
The first settlement on the site of Anuradhapura arose in the VI century BC. In 377 BC the city (called Anuradhapura) becomes the capital of the first Sinhala kingdom on the island.
In the vicinity of these stupas, there was an extensive system of irrigation canals. Anuradhapura developed dynamically as a shopping center; marked on the maps of Claudius Ptolemy.
Anuradhapura is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and one of the eight World Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka.
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi
A place of pilgrimage for Buddhists is the Mahabodhi tree and the Mahabodhi temple around it.The Mahabodhi tree is the oldest living human-planted tree in the world with a known planting date.
It is grown from a branch of the sacred Bodhi tree, situated in the Indian town of Bodh Gaya, under which, according to the legend, Lord Buddha attained Enlightenment.
Samadhi Buddha Statue
Samadhi Buddha Statue is the only survived complete Buddha statue which is considered to be an unachieveble example of perfect sculpture art, because the statue shows the perfect state of Buddha's mind free of any addictions and emotions.
Anuradhapura Archaeological Museum (Also known as Puravidu Bhavana) is one of the oldest museum in the Cultural Triangle area.
The museum is used to exhibit antiquities found from various regions of Sri Lanka. Such as Buddha statues, inscriptions, drawings, puppets, coins, jewelleries, Beads and other miscellaneous things.
Among these antiquities there is a model of the Thuparamaya Vatadage and a relic chamber found at Mihintale Kantaka Chetiya Dagoba.
Polonnaruwa was the second capital of Sri Lanka after the destruction of Anuradhapura in 993.
It comprises, besides the Brahmanic monuments built by the Cholas, the monumental ruins of the fabulous garden-city created by Parakramabahu I in the 12th century.
Day 3: Sigiriya
Sigiriya (which means “lion rock”) is a rocky plateau rising 370 meters above sea level and about 170 meters above the surrounding plain in the very center of Sri Lanka. Since 1982, Sigiriya has been protected by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
King Kashyap, in the last quarter of the 5th century AD, built an impregnable fortress on the rock and his palace, in which he lived with 400 concubines. The rock was surrounded by a moat with water, which was filled with crocodiles.
The monumental Lion Gate led to the top of the plateau. And in the pool for the Kashyap concubines, at a height of 87 meters, water flowed through a complex system of powerful pumps. Before and after the reign of Kasapa, a cave Buddhist monastery existed on a rock.
Next we will have the opportunity to ride elephants, go around the local village and cross the river on horseback of these amazing animals.
- Village tour and traditional lunch
Also in Sigiriya you can go to the so-called Village Tour, where you can get acquainted with the life of the Sri Lankan village.
- Bird Watching Tour
Here, in the national reserve, is an ideal place for bird watching (as well as butterflies, lizards and other animals and insects). Optionally, you can go on an hour-long excursion with a professional naturalist and ornithologist.
Golden Temple in Dambulla
The Golden Temple in Dambulla is a Buddhist cave temple of the 1st century BC, carved into the rock, with numerous statues of Buddha. The Sleeping Buddha Stone Temple is the largest cave temple in South Asia.
The temple complex consists of several caves located at an altitude of 350 meters, and numerous niches, the surface of which is painted with Buddhist wall paintings.
Day 4: Trincomalee
Trincomalee a beach holiday on the best beach in Sri Lanka - Nilaveli.
Day 5: Beach holidays in Trincomalee
Beach holidays in Trincomalee
Dutch Fort Frederick and Koneshwaram Temple
We will visit the old Dutch Fort Frederick, on the territory of which is Koneshwaram, the oldest Hindu temple in Sri Lanka. Even on the territory of the fort, deer walk, which are almost not afraid of people at all and you can feed them from your hands.
Day 6: Visiting veddas tribe of Sri Lanka
Aluvihara cave temple
Halfway from Trincomalee to Kandy we will visit the Aluvihara Cave Temple. It was here that the Buddhist Bible, the Pali Canon, was written more than 2000 years ago. There will be a unique opportunity to write down your names or the names of your loved ones on palm leaves according to the ancient technology invented by Buddhist monks.
Ayurvedic gardens in Matale
The city of Matale is famous as one of the main places for growing medicinal plants and spices.
Buddha Tooth Temple
Around 540 BC, the deceased Buddha was cremated and four teeth were taken out of the fire, which were transported around the world. The tooth was brought to Ceylon in 371.
The city of Anuradhapura was chosen as the initial storage location, then the tooth was transferred to the city of Polonnaruwa, and already at the beginning of the 18th century it was transported to Kandy.
The shrine, after several centuries in India, was sent to Ceylon IV by the ruler of Kalinga, who suffered defeats in wars and feared for the fate of his state. The relic on the island was transported by the ruler’s daughter, hiding it in her hairdo. Magical power has long been attributed to this tooth: possessing it, he possessed all the fullness of power. Therefore, the tooth of the Buddha became the possession of the royal dynasty. Inside the Temple there is also a Buddha Tooth museum, which displays a variety of historical artefacts and offerings donated to the temple.
Day 7: Kandy, Veddas tribe
Bahirawakanda Buddha Statue and Observation Point
Next, we will visit the monumental statue of Buddha, located on top of a hill towering above the city.
Royal Botanic Garden
Royal Botanic Garden, whose history spans over 700 years.The shrubs and trees here are gigantic in size, reminiscent of Gulliver's Travels to Lilliput Kids.
Here we can see the magnificent orchid garden, as well as the Alley of Memorial Trees planted by famous historical figures, among whom are Nicholas II (Last Russian King), many British Kings and Queens, first spaceman Yuri Gagarin, etc.
Visiting veddas tribe of Sri Lanka
This is a unique opportunity to see the life of the primitive tribe, inhabiting in the jungles of Sri Lanka for more than 16000 years.
Sri Lanka's Aborigines, or the Veddhas meaning “people of the forest” of Sri Lanka has a history much older than prince Vijaya’s landing in 5th century BC and the origins of the Sinhala race
Our tour to veddas tribes includes:
- Veddas objects and animals: greet the chief of the tribe, see a small Veddas museum with varieties of items used by veddas and some animals.
- Ritual tribal dance: observe and join wild tribal dance, including ritual dance before hunting and for lovers.
- Bow: learn how to use a bow and practice your stone age bowman skills.
- Animals' paths: track wild animals' paths and follow the animals in the jungle.
- Fire: set on fire by using stone.
- Honey: learn how to collect honey from the wild bees nest with bare hands.
Day 8: Kandy, Ambuluwawa, Nuwara Eliya
Tea plantations and tea factory
We will visit a tea plantation and a factory where we can see how it is assembled and produced, and even we can taste the legendary, universally recognized Best Ceylon Tea in the World.
Ceylon tea became the front-runner of the industry and was much loved for its unmatched quality and variety. The alchemy of land, sun and rain in the Paradise Island of Ceylon, as it was known 40 years ago, presents the ideal climatic conditions for cultivation of tea.
Temple of four religions and one of the best places in Sri Lanka to take unforgettable pictures.
One of the biggest and remarkable waterfalls in Sri Lanka.
Moon Plains can be considered as a faster and more budget friendly alternative to Horton Plateau. The scenery is almost as beautiful here, but the plateau is much closer to Nuwara Eliya, takes less time to visit, and is much cheaper to enter. The trip is by jeep.
Nuwara Eliya, called Little England, was a hill country retreat where the British colonialists could immerse in their pastimes such as fox hunting, deer hunting, elephant hunting, polo, golf and cricket.
It is known for its temperate, cool climate – the coolest area in Sri Lanka.
Day 9: Ella
The World's End and the Horton Plains
Horton Plains National Park is definitely one of the most beautiful World Heritage Sites in Sri Lanka.
The star attraction of this national park is the World’s End, which is where the plateau of the park comes to a sudden end and has a deep plunge of over 800 meters. On clear days, you can see Adam’s Peak from the World’s End.
Little Adam's Peak
Little Adam's Peak is an ideal place for trekking. Panoramic views that open early in the morning and late in the evening, when you can see the surrounding landscapes and look down at the clouds.
Nine Arches Bridge
Optional activities (can be added to the program upon request):
The train from Ella to Nuwara Eliya powers up through Sri Lanka's southern hill country, through the tea plantations, into the clouds and then weaves in and out of the many mountain tunnels as it descends to reach Ella. This is a journey not to be missed!
Day 10: Ravana - Safari
Ravana Falls is one of the largest and most impressive waterfalls in Sri Lanka.
Udavalawa Jeep Safari
We will go on a jeep safari where we will have the opportunity to see many wild elephants. You will also see huge flocks of birds such as pelicans, storks and peacocks. If you're lucky, you can also see giant squirrels, deer, bears, wild boars and even leopards.
Day 11: Sinharaja Rainforest
Sinharaja is the country's last viable area of primary tropical rainforest. More than 60% of the trees are endemic and many of them are considered rare.
Day 12: South Tour: Galle Fort, River Safari, turtles
A half-day excursion to the main attractions of the south coast is a great option to diversify your vacation on the beach and get a lot of positive emotions.
Highlights of the tour: Galle Fort, Asia's largest fortress built by Europeans; River safari (mangroves, Bird Island, Temple Island, Cinnamon Island); Turtle farm
Private car + accommodation BB
(entrance tickets not included)
|Group size||3* hotels||4* hotels|
|2||$650 per pax (1300 total)||$770 per pax (1540 total)|
|3||$620 per pax (1860 total)||$740 per pax (2220 total)|
|4||$600 per pax (2400 total)||$700 per pax (2800 total)|
|≥5||$580 per pax||$670 per pax|
(private car, accommodation, breakfast, lunch, dinner, all entrance tickets)
|Group size||3* hotels||4* hotels|
|2||$1230 per pax (2460 total)||$1350 per pax (2700 total)|
|3||$1200 per pax (3600 total)||$1320 per pax (3960 total)|
|4||$1190 per pax (4760 total)||$1290 per pax (5160 total)|
|≥5||$1160 per pax||$1250 per pax|
What is included. Entrance tickets
Comfortable car (or minivan) with air conditioning
Gasoline, parking, toll roads
Accommodation 11 nights
Entrance tickets (for reference):
Anuradhapura - $25
Polonnaruwa - $25
Sigiriya - $ 30
Jeep Safari - $ 70
Cave Temple in Dambulla - $ 10
Village Tour and cooking class - $ 35
Temple of the Tooth Relic - $ 10
Royal Botanic Garden in Peradeniya - $ 10
Ambuluwawa - $10
Elephant Orphanage - $ 18
Elephant Museum + Elephant ride + Factory Paper of elephant excrement - $ 25
Tea ceremony and tea tasting - $ 15
Bird Watching (photo tour) - $ 45
Horton Plains - $ 40
Whale watching - $50
* All prices in US dollars per person
Reviews about the organizer
I, as a professional wildlife photographer, traveled to Sri Lanka with some unusual requests. Igor helped not only to plan the route through the national parks and provided a very good driver, but also helped to find professional ornithologists in all the necessary locations.
We traveled to almost all national parks - Udawalawe, Minneriya, Yalu. We went to Sinharaja. There are many elephants and birds everywhere. Yala confirmed its reputation - here we managed to see leopards, however, unfortunately - very far away. I really liked Khabarana - the best place for shooting birds that you can find. We took a half-day ride to Wilpattu - a little-known park among tourists, which Igor recommended to me. The park itself is beautiful, comfortable, good paths, it is clear that they are taking care of it. You can definitely put it on a par with Yala. Unlucky to see leopards, but lucky to see Himalayan bears and giant squirrels. Of the minuses in Wilpattu - the complete absence of normal hotels near the park. I would not advise anyone to stay here overnight.
The rain spoiled the experience a bit. Complicated filming in Sinharaja. It is a pity that because of the rains it was not possible to shoot in the forests in the Kandy region. If you go to Sri Lanka for the sake of animals and national parks, you still need to take into account the season. But anyway, a huge thank you guys for organizing! With all the difficulties, it was thanks to them that we managed to squeeze the maximum out of this trip. Organization at the highest level - the guys will solve any problems, always in touch, find hotels in the right places at any time, organize transport, professional guides and ornithologists will prompt. Definitely 5+
Good afternoon, the tour went great. Very good guide, we will recommend you to all our friends. THANK YOU!