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Experience
Continent
Country


A Journey Through Ceylon

Exploring the colour, history, culture and wildlife of Sri Lanka.

An emerald teardrop falling from the Indian subcontinent, Sri Lanka speaks to your senses. Be captivated by the sight of elephants playing in Udawalawe National Park, listen to exotic birds calling in the rainforest, run your hands across vibrant, green tea leaves as you walk through sweet smelling plantations and breathe in the fresh ocean air from a sunset walk on the beach.

We fly into Colombo with time for rest before heading north to visit the sacred archaeological sites at Polonnaruwa and magnificent Sigiriya, places which developed under Buddhism in the years before Christ.

Kandy’s exotic streets are full of interest, with bazaars and temples including the Temple of the Tooth, one of Buddhism’s holiest sites.

We head south again to the mountain region of Nuwara Eliya: 19th century colonial Britain transposed to Ceylon. This is the centre of tea production and we’ll visit a plantation. Continuing south through the mountains we travel by train to Pattipola and on to Udawalawe for a game drive in the National Park, where you can see elephants. We take in local walks including a visit to one of the last remaining regions of natural rain forest.

We have time at a beach hotel to enjoy a little R&R after a busy and fascinating itinerary. From here we include a trip to the colonial city of Galle (pronounced ‘Gaul’), a fascinating and beautifully situated city. Our final night in Sri Lanka is spent in Colombo and we have plenty of time to see the highlights of the capital.

On two days the walks will be longer and over more demanding terrain.

Activity Level
alt
You enjoy being outdoors in the fresh air, communing with nature and discovering the world at a relaxed pace. Short countryside strolls or sightseeing on foot make you feel good. You enjoy cities with art and culture and like to develop an interest in your surroundings. You are reasonably fit and healthy. No previous experience is required. Where walking is involved you can expect up to 5 miles of walking on well made paths with up to 300m of ascent.



YOUR STORY STARTS HERE ...

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  • Dates, Prices & Holiday Information Sheet (PDF)
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    Date
    Nights
    Grades
    Depart From
    More Info
    Status
    Price From
    Date
    01 Nov 2017
    Nights
    17
    Grades
    Level A
    Depart From
    London (Gatwick)
    More Info
    Status
    Available (Guaranteed)
    Price From
    £2,250
    Date
    07 Feb 2018
    Nights
    17
    Grades
    Level A
    Depart From
    Manchester, Birmingham, London (Gatwick)
    More Info
    Status
    Available
    Price From
    £2,350
    Date
    21 Feb 2018
    Nights
    17
    Grades
    Level A
    Depart From
    Manchester, Birmingham, London (Gatwick)
    More Info
    Status
    Available
    Price From
    £2,350
    Date
    31 Oct 2018
    Nights
    17
    Grades
    Level A
    Depart From
    Provisional Date Only
    More Info
    Status
    Provisional
    Price From
  • Itinerary & Map
    01 Nov 2017 - 18 Nov 2017

    Day 1 - In flight
    We depart from London Gatwick to Colombo via Istanbul with Turkish Airlines.

    Day 2 - Marawila
    On arrival in Colombo Airport we take the short drive to our beach hotel at Marawila to check in and relax.

    Day 3 - Sigiriya
    We drive north (3½ hrs) to Sigiriya for 3 nights. On arrival we can enjoy a highlight of the holiday, climbing the rock fortress here, a UNESCO world heritage site.

    Day 4 - Sigiriya
    A full day visit to the well preserved ancient site of Polonnaruwa, including an impressive group of monuments of Buddha carved out of the granite.

    Day 5 - Sigiriya
    We have a short transfer from the hotel to Hiriwaduna followed by a 2 hour stroll around a local reservoir. This is an excellent place to enjoy the birdlife. On occasions crocodiles can be spotted in the water. Also keep an eye out for monkeys. We will have to walk through streams so bring some suitable footwear. Later we arrive at a banana plantation which we visit by bullock cart. In the village we get a chance to try wood carving with a local carver and visit a rice plantation where we can try a local lunch. Late afternoon we have the opportunity to visit Dambulla Caves. A highlight here is the rock carving of the Buddha 14m long.

    Day 6 - Kandy
    We then continue to Kandy for 2 nights, stopping en route for a short walk on the Riverston Plateau. The undulating grassy plateau is home to one of the highest densities of butterflies in the country. Lunch is included today and will be taken at the historic St Johns Bungalow on the terrace with the superb view of the mountains while you eat.

    Day 7 - Kandy
    We visit the botanical gardens at Peradeniya – the largest in Sri Lanka. We have a city tour of Kandy, former capital and UNESCO world heritage site. The highlight here is a visit to the Temple of the Tooth where a relic purported to be Buddha’s tooth is kept. It is Sri Lanka’s most important Buddhist shrine.

    Day 8 - Bandarawela
    From Kandy we drive to our next centre, Bandarawela for 4 nights. We’ll visit a tea plantation and tea factory en route. You will be told the best tea in the world is grown here. Anticipate being given a cup so you can decide for yourself. We continue to Bandarawela and should have time for a stroll around town before dinner at the hotel.

    Day 9 - Bandarawela
    We start with a short train journey to Pattipola and continue for a half-day walking excursion out to Horton Plains to explore the grasslands and forests leading to the escarpments and spectacular views from the big and small ‘World’s Ends’.

    Day 10 - Bandarawela
    A day visit to Mini Adams Peak sacred area with a walk through the mountains. We will pass various waterfalls on the way.

    Day 11 - Bandarawela
    We have a morning walk to Lipton’s seat. The Scottish tea baron Sir Thomas Lipton used to survey his burgeoning empire from here. We will then return to the hotel for an afternoon of leisure.

    Day 12 - Udawalawe
    A long drive brings us to Udawalawe to spend 2 nights in the foothills of the central highlands. There may be possibility of an evening walk along the shore of Udawalawe lake.

    Day 13 - Udawalawe
    We enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel and the first half of the day relaxing at the hotel pool. In the afternoon we experience a game drive in the Udawalawe National Park before returning to the hotel for dinner. We have a good chance of spotting wild elephants in the park.

    Day 14 - Wadduwa
    En route to Wadduwa (2 nights) we stop briefly at Mulkirigala Rock Temple. Next to Galle on the south coast to enjoy the seaside and the atmospheric city centre. We will have lunch at the Rampart Hotel. A fine old colonial building, before continuing to our beach hotel.

    Day 15 - Wadduwa
    We have a day of rest and recuperation by the sea. A good time to write the postcards, take a dip and discuss the experiences with your fellow travellers.

    Day 16 - Colombo
    We transfer to Colombo with time for a sightseeing tour for the capital and overnight in our city centre, seafront, colonial hotel.

    Day 17 - In flight
    Later in the day we will return to Colombo airport for our overnight flight to the UK.

    Day 18 -
    Arrive in the UK


  • Accommodation

    Good tourist class hotels throughout.

  • What's Included
    • Return flights and transfers.
    • Half board en-suite accommodation.
    • All transport to complete the itinerary.
    • A local guide to enhance your experience.

  • Holiday Highlights
    • Immersing oneself in more archaeology and culture than you can shake a stick at.
    • Meeting the elephants at Udawalawe National Park.
    • Strolling amongst tea plantations.
    • Enjoying Galle, a relaxed colonial town by the sea.
    • Unwinding at our beach hotel towards the end of the holiday.

  • Travel Information & Regional Departures
    • Arrival transfer by road (c1hr).
    • Flights: Gatwick-Colombo via Istanbul (c14hrs + en-route stop in Male), Turkish Airlines.        
    • Regional flights Manchester and Birmingham may be available from £30 supplement. Please ask for details.
    • UK add-on flights from £150 return, British Airways.
    • Upgrades available, please contact us for a competitive quote.
    • Visa is required. 

  • Holiday Photo Gallery
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  • Private Group Enquiry

    Planning a holiday for a group? For a quote or to simply enquire about the possibility of booking this holiday for your Walking Group please fill out the enquiry form below and our dedicated Private Group Department will get in touch with you shortly to discuss your options.

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Activity Level
alt
You enjoy being outdoors in the fresh air, communing with nature and discovering the world at a relaxed pace. Short countryside strolls or sightseeing on foot make you feel good. You enjoy cities with art and culture and like to develop an interest in your surroundings. You are reasonably fit and healthy. No previous experience is required. Where walking is involved you can expect up to 5 miles of walking on well made paths with up to 300m of ascent.



YOUR STORY STARTS HERE ...

Please select a departure date







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