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  • Departing from?Dublin + 3
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  • When?March 2015
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Home / Occasions Discover Sri Lanka
Occasions Discover Sri Lanka
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Occasions Discover Sri Lanka

  • 13 Night Holiday
  • Half Board
View Dates & Prices

On this 13 night holiday with a difference, discover the rich history and the unique culture of the island nation of Sri Lanka. Admire its beautiful landscapes, ancient cities and temples, amazing wildlife and relaxing beaches, as you get to know the people and places of this fascinating country. 

With wonders at every turn, you will take in a whole host of UNESCO World Heritage Sites including the walled city of Galle, the ancient city of Polonnaruwa and the spectacular Lion's Rock fortress in Sigiriya. A trip to the ancient city of Anuradhapura will be a particular highlight, with its temples, landscaped gardens, ceremonial baths and the sacred ‘Bo Tree’, the oldest known tree in the world.

Immerse yourself in local life as you visit regional villages, take a ride in a tuk tuk, and enjoy a traditional Sri Lankan cultural performance. Marvel at the country’s incredible wildlife with a trip to an Elephant orphanage and a safari game drive in the Yala National Park, where elephants, leopards, water buffalo, crocodiles, sea turtles and many species of birds are among the inhabitants.  And to top it all off, you can enjoy some relaxation time on one of the island’s stunning sandy beaches.

 

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Sri Lankan Rupee
Local Time
Irish and UK time +5.5 hours.
Airport
Bandaranaike International Airport is located approximately 30minutes drive from your hotel in Negombo.
Climate
The diverse topography of Sri Lanka means that parts of the country experience different climatic conditions at the same time. Upland areas are generally cooler and more temperate, while coastal areas are warmer, although cooled by sea breezes. 
Passport/Visa
EU Citizens require a tourist visa to enter Sri Lanka. Clients need to apply for an ETA. Clients complete this online https://eta.gov.lk/etaslvisa/etaNavServ?payType=1 for a fee of $35 dollars, or 65 euro if completed by Travel Department.
Vaccination Information
Vaccinations may be required before your departure - please consult with your GP or Tropical Medical Bureau.
Malaria and Dengue fever
Malaria and Dengue fever are risks in Sri Lanka. Avoid being bitten by mosquitoes by covering up and using mosquito repellents.
Food and Drink
Sri Lankan cuisine can be quite hot – sometimes on a par with Thai, and Indian cooking. The staple dish is rice and curry, at its finest a miniature banquet whose contrasting flavours – coconut milk, chillies, curry leaves, cinnamon, garlic and “Maldive fish” (an intensely flavoured pinch of sun-dried tuna) – bear witness to Sri Lanka’s status as one of the original spice islands.
Average Prices for Region
  • Coffee: 313 Rs
  • Beer: 300 Rs
  • Glass of wine: 350 Rs
  • Meal: 1,550 Rs 
  • Soft Drink: 73 Rs
  • Bottled Water: 77.00Rs
  • (1 Rs - €0.006)
Packing List
  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • Sun hat
  • A small backpack
  • A light coat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

The Fountains of Paradise by Arthur C. Clarke

The Road from Elephant Pass by Nihal de Silva

Colombo: A Novel by Carl Muller

Holiday highlights

Anuradhapura 
The most extensive and important of the Sri Lankan ancient cities is famous for its temples, reservoirs, and beautifully landscaped gardens, the ruins of which remain to this day. 
Polonnaruwa 
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.
Sigiriya 
The ruins of the capital built by the parricidal King Kassapa I (477–95) lie on the steep slopes and at the summit of a granite peak standing some 370 m high (the 'Lion's Rock', which dominates the jungle from all sides). A series of galleries and staircases emerging from the mouth of a gigantic lion constructed of bricks and plaster provide access to the site.
Kandy 
This sacred Buddhist site was the last capital of the Sinhala kings, whose patronage enabled the Dinahala culture to flourish for more than 2,500 years until the occupation of Sri Lanka by the British in 1815. It is also the site of the Temple of the Tooth Relic (the sacred tooth of the Buddha), which is a famous pilgrimage site.
Galle 
Founded in the 16th century by the Portuguese, Galle reached the height of its development in the 18th century, before the arrival of the British. It is the best example of a fortified city built by Europeans in South and South-East Asia.

Practical Information for this holiday

Currency
Sri Lankan Rupee
Local Time
Irish and UK time +5.5 hours.
Airport
Bandaranaike International Airport is located approximately 30minutes drive from your hotel in Negombo.
Climate
The diverse topography of Sri Lanka means that parts of the country experience different climatic conditions at the same time. Upland areas are generally cooler and more temperate, while coastal areas are warmer, although cooled by sea breezes. 
Passport/Visa
EU Citizens require a tourist visa to enter Sri Lanka. Clients need to apply for an ETA. Clients complete this online https://eta.gov.lk/etaslvisa/etaNavServ?payType=1 for a fee of $35 dollars, or 65 euro if completed by Travel Department.
Vaccination Information
Vaccinations may be required before your departure - please consult with your GP or Tropical Medical Bureau.
Malaria and Dengue fever
Malaria and Dengue fever are risks in Sri Lanka. Avoid being bitten by mosquitoes by covering up and using mosquito repellents.
Food and Drink
Sri Lankan cuisine can be quite hot – sometimes on a par with Thai, and Indian cooking. The staple dish is rice and curry, at its finest a miniature banquet whose contrasting flavours – coconut milk, chillies, curry leaves, cinnamon, garlic and “Maldive fish” (an intensely flavoured pinch of sun-dried tuna) – bear witness to Sri Lanka’s status as one of the original spice islands.
Average Prices for Region
  • Coffee: 313 Rs
  • Beer: 300 Rs
  • Glass of wine: 350 Rs
  • Meal: 1,550 Rs 
  • Soft Drink: 73 Rs
  • Bottled Water: 77.00Rs
  • (1 Rs - €0.006)
Packing List
  • Your valid passport
  • Sun cream
  • Sun hat
  • A small backpack
  • A light coat
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
Recommended Reading

The Fountains of Paradise by Arthur C. Clarke

The Road from Elephant Pass by Nihal de Silva

Colombo: A Novel by Carl Muller

Trip Itinerary - Day by day

Day 1 - Travel To Sri Lanka

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Evening

Travel To Sri Lanka

Depart Dublin on your overnight flight to Colombo, the capital city of Sri Lanka.

Day 2 - Negombo

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Afternoon

Negombo

Upon arrival in Colombo you will be met by our local representative before being transferred to your hotel in Negombo. You will have the remainder of the evening at leisure to settle in to your surroundings

Day 3 - Habarana

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Morning

Negombo village visit

In the early morning you will explore a local fishing village. Negombo has a thriving fishing industry so the early morning is the best time to witness the locals selling their fresh catch. After breakfast at your hotel you will depart for Habarana, which will be your home for the next three nights. Enjoy views of the tropical countryside from your coach en route.

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Afternoon

Habarana village

Enjoy an afternoon guided excursion to a local village in Habarana. You will have the opportunity to experience rural life, taking a cart ride through lush paddy fields as well as a traditional canoe ride on Lake Habarana.

Day 4 - Sigiriya

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Morning

Sigiriya

This morning you will begin a full day guided excursion to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Sigiriya. The spectacular ‘Lion’s Rock’ fortress is a large ancient rock palace surrounded by the remains of an extensive network of gardens. Admire the beautiful collection of Water Gardens, painted Frescoes and ancient graffiti all on show in what is one of Sri Lanka's crowning glories.  

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Afternoon

Polonnaruwa

In the afternoon, enjoy an excursion of the ancient city of Polonnaruwa, the medieval capital of Sri Lanka. This UNESCO World Heritage site includes the Royal Palace complex and Gal Vihara rock temple of the Buddha. The entire landscape of the region is punctuated by huge man-made reservoirs and veritable inland seas, the most famous of which is the Prakrama Samudra or the Sea of Parakrama.

Day 5 - Anuradhapura

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Full Day

Anuradhapura

Set off on a full day excursion to the ancient city of Anuradhapura, which is famous for its temples, landscaped gardens, ceremonial baths and the sacred ‘Bo Tree’, which dates from around 245BC and is the world’s oldest known tree. Anuradhapura was the capital of the island for more than a thousand years from the 5th century BC, and a number of its Buddhist monuments date back over 2000 years.  Return to your hotel in Harabana for an evening at your leisure.

Day 6 - Dambulla And Kandy

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Morning

Dambulla Cave Temple

After breakfast, depart for Kandy, an attractive bustling city that is encircled by hills and has a tranquil lake at its centre. You will enjoy a visit to Dambulla Cave Temple en route, which has been a sacred pilgrimage site for 22 centuries and contains a fascinating array of Buddhist mural paintings and statues of Buddha.

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Afternoon

The Temple of The Sacred Tooth Relic

In Kandy, enjoy an excursion to The Temple of The Sacred Tooth Relic, a centre for the Buddhist faith. This 16th century temple houses the sacred Tooth Relic of the Buddha, which was brought to Sri Lanka from ancient India in the 4th century.

Day 7 - Peradeniya And Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage

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Full Day

Peradeniya And Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage

Relish in the beauty of The Royal Botanic Gardens in Peradeniya before visiting the Pinnawela Elephant orphanage, where you will have the opportunity to witness wild Asian elephants.  A stop at a Batik factory, where cloth is dyed in beautiful patterns using a technique involving hot wax, is also included before arriving back at your hotel in the late afternoon.

Day 8 - Nuwara Eliya

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Morning

Nuwara Eliya

This morning, you will set off for Nuwara Eliya, with a visit to a tea plantation en route. Upon arrival in Nuwara Eliya, you will have a guided tour of the town, before checking in at your hotel. The town’s name translates as “City of Light”, but it is also known as “Little England” as it was a popular destination for 19th century British colonialists who indulged in pastimes such as fox hunting, deer hunting, elephant hunting, polo, golf and cricket. The colonial history of the town can still be seen in local buildings such as the Queen's Cottage, General's House, Grand Hotel, Hill Club, and Town Post Office.

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Evening

At Leisure

Settle into your hotel and get to know your surroundings.  The city of Nuwara Eliya, located in the heart of Sri Lankan hill country, is the home of the famous Ceylon Tea. Situated at an altitude of 1868m, Nuwara Eliya is overlooked by Pidurutalagala, the tallest mountain in Sri Lanka, and enjoys a temperate highland climate. The rolling mountains are a carpet of velvety green tea plantations, and beautiful waterfalls dot the landscape.

Day 9 - Ella Waterfalls

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Morning

Ella Waterfalls

Enjoy the journey from Nuwara Eliya to Yala, with a visit to the Ella Waterfalls included en route.

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Evening

At Leisure

Check in to your hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure in Yala.

Day 10 - Yala National Park And Galle

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Full Day

Yala National Park and Galle

Experience an early morning safari in game drive vehicles in the Yala National Park which is home to elephants, leopards, water buffalo, crocodiles, sea turtles as well as countless other animals and birds. Afterwards transfer to the walled city of Galle and explore the 17th century Portuguese and Dutch Fort in which the central city is contained.  Stroll through the streets to see the Dutch influenced architecture, old British residences and mosques with their Arabic touches before proceeding on to the beachside resort of Unawatuna.

Day 11 & 12 - Unawatuna

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Full Day

Unawatuna

You will have two full days at leisure in the delightful surroundings of Unawatuna. Enjoy the warm sunshine and clear blue seas, sit and watch the surfers or snorkel the impressive coral reef just off the shore. Your local guide will be happy to suggest activities to suit your interests.

Day 13 - Unawatuna to Colombo

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Afternoon

Unawatuna to Colombo

You will have one final morning to soak up the relaxing atmosphere of Unawatuna beach before departing for Colombo, where you will spend your final night in Sri Lanka.

Day 14 - Arrival Home

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Morning

Arrive home

Arrive home following your once in a lifetime trip to Sri Lanka.

* Please note that the order of your excursions on the itinerary above is provisional and subject to change

Customer reviews

Hotel & accommodation available for this trip

Jetwing Blue Hotel 5

This trendy coastal getaway embodies a contemporary taste of luxury living. Modern elegance combined with simplicity is the key feature of the beautifully designed rooms and suites. Dining options at Jetwing Blue are many and varied, with each meal a gastronomical delight which w... read more read more read more

This trendy coastal getaway embodies a contemporary taste of luxury living. Modern elegance combined with simplicity is the key feature of the beautifully designed rooms and suites. Dining options at Jetwing Blue are many and varied, with each meal a gastronomical delight which will tantalize your taste buds. 

Hotel address
Jetwing Blue Hotel
Ethukale
Porutota Rd
Negombo
View available dates for this hotel

Cinnamon Lodge Habarana 5

The Cinnamon Lodge Habarana is the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of life. Built on a replica of the foundations of the nearby Ritigala ruins, an ancient palace-turned-monastery, the resort brings the original concept of a royal retreat to the 21st century, with l... read more read more read more

The Cinnamon Lodge Habarana is the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of life. Built on a replica of the foundations of the nearby Ritigala ruins, an ancient palace-turned-monastery, the resort brings the original concept of a royal retreat to the 21st century, with luxurious private cottages and suites all fitted with ultra-modern amenities.

Hotel address
Cinnamon Lodge Habarana
Habarana,
Sri Lanka

View available dates for this hotel

Earl's Regency 5

Earl's Regency Hotel is located in the heart of Sri Lanka's cultural capital, Kandy. Guests can enjoy the hotel's facilities, which include a spa, an outdoor swimming pool and sauna. The hotel also boasts a restaurant offering a buffet spread of eastern and western dishes, a coff... read more read more read more

Earl's Regency Hotel is located in the heart of Sri Lanka's cultural capital, Kandy. Guests can enjoy the hotel's facilities, which include a spa, an outdoor swimming pool and sauna. The hotel also boasts a restaurant offering a buffet spread of eastern and western dishes, a coffee shop and lounge & bar. Guests can enjoy activities such as trekking and cycling in the surrounding mountainous countryside and several attractions are located nearby such as Kandy Temple of the Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha, which overlooks Kandy Lake and is a 15-minute drive away, as well as Peradeniya Botanical Gardens which is a 10-minute drive from the hotel.

Hotel address
Earl's Regency
Tennekumbura
Kandy
20000
View available dates for this hotel

Heritance Tea Factory 4

Heritance Tea Factory is nested in the mountain range that is considered the birthplace of the world’s best tea. The original tea factory was constructed in the days of British Raj.A cup of hot spice tea greets you upon arrival and let you taste your first sip of a unique unmatch... read more read more read more

Heritance Tea Factory is nested in the mountain range that is considered the birthplace of the world’s best tea. The original tea factory was constructed in the days of British Raj.
A cup of hot spice tea greets you upon arrival and let you taste your first sip of a unique unmatchable experience, offered exclusively at this hotel. The atrium is latticed with steel, colour coded green to show the original metalwork and red to show which supports were added during the conversion in 1996. Above your head, two giant brass-capped wooden fans remind you that the bedrooms used to be the withering lofts, where the tea leaves were laid out to let the moisture evaporate.

Hotel address
Heritance Tea Factory
The Tea Factory Kandapola
Nuwara Eliya
Sri Lanka
View available dates for this hotel

Cinnamon Wild Resort 4

Cinnamon Wild Yala boasts a prime location, just a 5-minute drive from the famous Yala National Park. Chalets offer spectacular views of the beach or jungle. They are decorated with local artcrafts and feature air-conditioning, cable TV and a minibar. All chalets come ... read more read more read more

Cinnamon Wild Yala boasts a prime location, just a 5-minute drive from the famous Yala National Park. Chalets offer spectacular views of the beach or jungle. They are decorated with local artcrafts and feature air-conditioning, cable TV and a minibar. All chalets come with private bathroom facilities.

 

Enjoying a prime location, Cinnamon Wild Yala's restaurant provides beautiful landscapes and serves Asian and Western dishes. Meals can also be enjoyed in the privacy of guests’ rooms. 

Hotel address
Cinnamon Wild Resort
Palatupana
Kirinda,
Tissamaharama,
View available dates for this hotel

Calamander Unawatuna Beach 4

Calamander Unawatuna Beach boasts an ideal central location, directly on one of Sri Lanka's best beaches, Unawatuna. Guests can enjoy the hotel's facilities which include 3 swimming pools, including a glass pool located in the private beach garden, offering beautiful views out ov... read more read more read more

Calamander Unawatuna Beach boasts an ideal central location, directly on one of Sri Lanka's best beaches, Unawatuna. Guests can enjoy the hotel's facilities which include 3 swimming pools, including a glass pool located in the private beach garden, offering beautiful views out over the Indian Ocean. Guests can enjoy the hotel's superb location, sun bathing on the beach or in the hotel's private beach garden, lounging by one of three swimming pools, kayaking on the Indian Ocean in one of the hotel's free kayaks, or dining at one of the hotel's four beachside restaurants and bars.

Hotel address
Calamander Unawatuna Beach
Parangiyawatta, Unawatuna
80600

View available dates for this hotel

Cinnamon Lakeside Colombo 4

Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel is located along the banks of Beira Lake in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Guests can enjoy the hotel's facilities which include an outdoor swimming pool, spa, tennis courts, terrace, lounge and several restaurant options. The hotel is close to key attractions includ... read more read more read more

Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel is located along the banks of Beira Lake in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Guests can enjoy the hotel's facilities which include an outdoor swimming pool, spa, tennis courts, terrace, lounge and several restaurant options. The hotel is close to key attractions including Beira Lake, Pettah Market and Khan Clock Tower and the Crescat Boulevard shopping mall is a short drive away.

Hotel address
Cinnamon Lakeside Colombo
Sir Chittampalam A Gardiner Mawatha
Colombo

View available dates for this hotel

*Some hotel facilities are seasonally operated and may not be available at the time of your stay. Charges may apply for certain facilities.

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Price, taxes, flight times & availability are subject to change. E&OE. Price based on per person, sharing. Single Supplement cost may apply.

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  • Baggage from €40.00
  • Insurance from €12.50
  • Single Supplement from €149.00

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