SRI LANKA HERITAGE TOUR HIGHLIGHTS DAY TO DAY ITINERARY:
Day 1 – Arrive Colombo Airport
You will be met on arrival and transfer to your hotel in a private vehicle, with an English-speaking driver-guide.
In the evening explore the commercial city of Colombo.
Sri Lanka’s commercial capital and the largest city with the highest population, Colombo is situated in the Western Province. It is a fascinating town which has a blend of eastern and western cultures where all colors of the island are drawn together. Many visitors appreciate the city’s colonial heritage and enjoy the vast range of fine shopping and dining outlets that can be located within the rush of its urban buzz.
Accommodation: As selected
Day 2:Colombo – Pinnawala – Habrana
After breakfast leave for the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage (Approx Transfer time: 2- 2 ½ Hrs).
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is the home for young Elephants who have been displaced or lost from their natural habitat. Today with 70 elephants herein, Pinnawela has become the home to the largest captive group of elephants in the world. Feeding time at 1:15 pm. Enjoy an up close and personal experience with the world’s largest land mammals!
Thereafter proceed to Habrana and check into your hotel (Approx Transfer time: 2- 3 Hrs)
Day 3: Habrana – Sigiriya – Polonnaruwa – Habrana
After breakfasts at the hotel proceed to Sigiriya, where you may climb the 1200 steps and admire the fabulous frescoes on the walls of the ancient rock fortress. (Approx Transfer time: 30 – 40 mins).
The Sigiriya Rock Fortress is known as the 8th wonder of the world. This rock fortress was built by King Kasyapa in the 5th century A.D. and was a royal citadel for more than 18 years. The summit of the rock, with an area of nearly one hectare was the site of the palace and the outer wall was built on the very brink of the precipice.
The UNESCO sponsored Central Cultural Fund has restored Sigiriya 5th century water gardens to their former glory.
Thereafter Explore the Ancient city of Polonnaruwa on Bicycles. (Approx Transfer time: 1- 1 ½ HRS)
The architect of this lovely city is known to be King Parakrama Bahu – The Great. The remains of the Royal Citadel council chamber, prince’s bathing pool and the Gal Vihare, a stone temple with its colossal sculptures of the Buddha in a quiet grove of trees as well as the still functioning ParakramaSamudra, a man made reservoir, larger than the Colombo harbor, are on easy distance from each other. The new museum has an excellent scale model of the ancient city as it was.
On completion return to hotel for overnight.
Day 4: Habrana – Dambulla – Matale – Kandy
After breakfast leave for Kandy en route visit Dambulla Cave Temple – (Approx Transfer time: 30 – 40 Mins).
A vast isolated rock mass- it was here that king Valagambahu took refuge in the 01st century B.C. He later turned the caves into a rock temple. Dambulla is a world heritage site and is the most impressive of Sri Lanka’s cave temples. The complex of five caves with over 2000 sq. meters of painted walls and ceiling found here are over 2000 years old. The caves contain over 150 images of the Buddha of which the largest is the colossal figure of the Buddha carved out of rock spanning 14 meters.
Thereafter proceed to Matale (Approx. Transfer time: 1 – 1 ½ Mins)
Matale is famous for its batik production and spice gardens. Batik has been an ancient art of painting cloth and today Sri Lanka is among the world leaders in the design of batik. Batik galleries and factories offer batik from simple single-colored designs to intricate multi-colored masterpieces. For centuries, spices have been one of Sri Lanka’s celebrated exports.
After your exciting tour of Matale and its Spice Gardens, proceed to Kandy and check into your hotel (Approx. Transfer time: 1 – 1 ½ HRS)
Kandy was the last stronghold of the Sinhala Kings and retains an aura of grandeur, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Encircled by hills, with a tranquil lake in its center, it is the site of the renowned “Temple of the Tooth”. Kandy and its satellite villages is the center of the island’s handicraft industry and its traditional dances are the most spectacular in the country.
Day 5: Kandy
After breakfast leave for the Royal Botanical Gardens in Peradeniya (Approx Transfer time: 30 – 40 Mins).
The gardens were founded in 1821 primarily to introduce coffee trees and various other tropical plants of economic importance to the region. The gardens played a pivotal role in establishing the country’s flourishing tea industry in the late 1870s.
Thereafter in the late afternoon, visit The Temple of the Tooth Relic located in the royal palace complex which houses the Relic of the tooth of Buddha.
After that, witness a Cultural Dance performance in the evening. These classical dance forms are associated with the performance of various rituals and ceremonies which are centuries old and are based on the folk religion and folk beliefs going back to times before the advent and acceptance of Buddhism by the Sinhalese people in the third century B.C.
Upon completion return to you hotel and have the rest of the evening at leisure.
Day 6: Kandy – Yala
After breakfast Proceed to Yala (Approx Transfer time: 4 – 5 hrs)
Yala National Park is a widely known Sri Lankan forest reserve which is located in the southeast part of the island. It is prominent among the other national parks due to the fact that it has the highest density of leopards.
Afternoon at leisure.
Day 7: Yala National Park Game Drive
After breakfast enjoy an exciting 4×4 jeep safari.
Yala is one of the best spots available for wildlife observers and photographers. Apart from the wildlife, the park consists of a range of vegetation from grassland to dense jungle with an abundance of water streams, lagoons and lakes. With the highest concentration of leopards, the park also contains a numbers of animals including Asian elephants, crocodiles, wild boar, water buffalo and grey langurs.
Birdlife includes White bellied sea eagle in parklands and Waders, Painted storks and Black necked stork in the wetlands. Sirkeer Malkoha and Sri Lanka Jungle flow are few of the Sri Lankan endemic species that can be found in Yala.
Upon completion return to your hotel and have the rest of the day at leisure.
Day 8: Yala – Negombo
After breakfast you will transfer to Negombo (Approx Transfer time: 5 – 6 hrs)
Negombo is a characteristic fishing town north of Colombo and is a mere 15 km from the international airport. Set amidst lush groves of coconut palms, it breathes the spirit of the sea. Negombo is a gourmet paradise with sea food in plenty. The wide sandy beaches and the safe sea are the major attractions of Negombo. Water-sports and diving are extremely popular among visitors, with a few well preserved coral reefs and a 50 year old shipwreck that serves as an artificial reef for many varieties of fish. There are also local handicraft sales on the beaches and the shops near the town.
Day 9: Colombo – Depart
(Approx. Transfer time: 20 – 30 mins)
Today after breakfast you will be transferred to the Colombo Airport for your flight back home accompanied with all the happy memories of the tropical isle.