About This Trip
The most well-known UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Sri Lanka can be visited over this 8-day tour. Start your tour in the seaside town of Negombo to get an insight of local's coastal life. Then continue on to explore the UNESCO sites of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa ancient ruins, the Sigiriya Lion Rock, the Dambulla Cave Temple and the Sacred city of Kandy. The journey ends in Colombo with a tour of the city's most popular sights.
- 1NegomboArrival and Enjoy Some Leisure Time
- 2 - 3AnuradhapuraAncient Sites of Anuradhapura, Mihintale Mountain
- 4PolonnaruwaPolonnaruwa Archaeological Treasures
- 5SigiriyaLion Rock, Village of Hiriwadunna
- 6Dambulla, Kandy
Dambulla: Cave Temple
Kandy: Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, Kandyan Dance
- 7KandyRoyal Botanical Garden of Peradeniya, Kandy Lake
- 8ColomboIndependence Square, Gangarama Temple, Galle Face Green, Colombo National Museum, Departure
Day 1: Arrival, Negombo
Welcome to Sri Lanka, the "Pearl of the Indian Ocean"! On arrival at Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport, meet your private chauffeur-guide and be driven to your hotel in Negombo, a seaside town which is only 20 minutes away from the airport. The rest of the day is at your leisure.
Day 2: Negombo - Anuradhapura
Enjoy your free time in Negombo, this historical commercial center surrounded by a fascinating network of canals teeming with rural life. You can wake up early to catch the action at the Negombo Fish Market or take a boat tour of the aquatic life on Muthurajawela Marsh if you are energetic.
In this afternoon, you will head for one of the best-preserved ruins of ancient Ceylon - the UNESCO World Heritage City of Anuradhapura (approx. 5 hrs), known as one of the ancient cities in Sri Lanka's cultural triangle. Check into your Anuradhapura hotel.
Day 3: Anuradhapura - Sigiriya
Today, you will visit the ancient sites which dot the towns of Anuradhapura and Mihintale, which is famous for its well-preserved ruins of ancient Lankan civilization. From the 4th century BC, Anuradhapura was the capital of Sri Lanka until the beginning of the 11th century AD. During this period it remained one of the most stable and durable centers of political power and urban life in South Asia. The ancient city, considered sacred to the Buddhist world, is today surrounded by monasteries covering an area of over 16 square miles.
Day 4: Sigiriya - Polonnaruwa - Sigiriya
Start the day with an excursion to Polonnaruwa (2 hours' drive away from Sigiriya), the second ancient capital of Cultural Triangle. It well preserves ruins of palaces, bathing pools, stupas and religious rock sculptures. Return to Sigiriya after your tour in Polonnaruwa.
Day 5: Sigiriya's Highlights
In the morning, start your Sigiriya trip with a visit to the 5th-century legendary sky citadel of "Lion Rock" - the Landmark of this country, also the highlight of your cultural triangle tour; although a steep climb is requested, the story behind the monument, and the panoramic view of Dambulla seen on the top are definitely worth the effort.
In the afternoon, continue your exploration in the rural village of Hiriwadunna. Travel into the lush Sri Lankan countryside by a jeep or a Tuk Tuk. Hop into a bullock cart alongside paddy fields and rural vegetable plantations. At dusk, take a boat ride and sail to the other side of a lake, enjoying the fantastic sunset view, and looking out for birds, butterflies, as well as the villagers fishing or washing clothes at the periphery of the lake.
Day 6: Sigiriya - Kandy
Today, get started with the famous Dambulla Cave Temple, home to many magnificent Buddha images and rock painting dating back to 2nd century BC. Then head for Ceylon's old capital of Kandy, en route stop for an interesting visit to learn a wide range of spices at one of the spice gardens, whose 15-minute complimentary Ayurveda Massage is recommended.
After arriving in Kandy (approx. 3.5 hrs by road), appreciate a vivid and traditional cultural dance (Kandyan Dance) before walking to the nearby Sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic - Sri Lanka's most sacred Buddhist shrine, the Puja Ritual held in the temple with all the fanfare, drums, trumpets and brightly colored Monks definitely shows you how special and spiritually important the temple means to Sri Lanka.
Day 7: Kandy - ColomboIn the morning, take an interesting visit to the Royal Botanical Garden of Peradeniya which boasts 300+ varieties of orchids, spices, medicinal plantsand palm trees. This afternoon, you could spend some time in the downtown market or walking around the Kandy Lake before heading for Colombo city by vehicle (approx. 3.5 hours). Check into your hotel upon arrival and the rest of the day is at your leisure.
Day 8: Colombo, Departure
Enjoy some free time in the morning. After check out, take a guided city tour to explore Colombo's colonial legacies including the Independence Square, Gangarama Temple of Colombo, the mile-long promenade of Galle Face Green and Colombo's National Museum. Stop for taking pictures when driving by the former British Administrative Center.
In the late afternoon, you will be escorted to CMB airport (1 hour's drive from downtown) for your onward flight back home.
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