Highlights of Sri Lanka
From climbing the magnificent Sigiriya Rock and making a pilgrimage to the Temple of the Tooth, to exploring tea plantations in ‘Little England’ and relaxing by the beach in Galle, our small group tours to Sri Lanka will take you on a once in a lifetime adventure through this incredible country. Here are just a few of the highlights of our adventure holidays to Sri Lanka.
Ascend Sri Lanka’s iconic towering Sigiriya Rock on our Sri Lanka Discovery Tour. This ancient 5th-century fortress, built upon a large rock that soars up through the dense forest canopy in Sri Lanka’s Central Province, is an incredible sight. Beat the crowds and avoid the high temperatures with a dawn climb up this magnificent boulder. Navigate the switchback series of steps and steel stairways hung from the rock’s cliff face and stop to admire the colourful frescoes of the Sigiriya Damsels on the way up. Once you’ve caught your breath at the top you’ll be rewarded with far-reaching panoramic views of the surrounding jungle and jagged mountain ranges on the horizon.
Visit Kandy, Relic of the Sacred Tooth
One of Sri Lanka’s most revered Buddhist relics, Kandy is home to the Temple of the Tooth, a bejewelled shrine of Buddha’s left canine tooth. Brought to India over 1500 years ago, this sacred relic is paraded around the town every August during the full moon in celebration and remembrance of its arrival here. Many Buddhists from all over the world travel to see this important spiritual complex.
Visit a tea plantation
Step back in time with a visit to the Nuwara Eliya tea plantation on our Sri Lanka Discovery Tour. Once known as ‘Little England’, this lush highland was a retreat for homesick British people during the colonial era and the red phone boxes, pretty rose gardens and colonial Victorian architecture still stand today. Nuwara Eliya is also part of an important tea growing region. Verdant plantations stretch over the rolling hills as far as the eye can see and tea-making factories are dotted along the emerald green landscape.
Relax in Galle
Head to the pretty coastal town of Galle, a fortified city founded by Portuguese colonists in the 16th century, on our Sri Lanka In Depth Tour. Once an important trading centre, the fort ramparts now protect the harbour and the Dutch colonial whitewashed and terracotta-roofed houses. Wander through the streets to soak up the artistic and bohemian ambience, drink tea in a streetside cafe, and find a unique souvenir in a quirky boutique. Galle also boasts beautiful golden sand beaches, and there are plenty of beach-side bars overlooking the aquamarine waters of the Indian Ocean.
Best time to go to Sri Lanka
Enjoy hot and sunny weather all year round in Sri Lanka. Be prepared for higher temperatures and humidity during the monsoon seasons - May to September in the southwest and November to February in the northeast. You may also need some extra layers when heading into the hill country where the evenings can feel a bit chilly.
Most species of wildlife can be spotted all year round in Sri Lanka. The best time of year to see whales off the southwest coast of Sri Lanka is from December to April, whereas the prime whale-watching season on the east coast is from May to October.