visiting temple: Yes, please dress accordingly Transportation:: Private Group-size:: Small groups Pick-up location and time: Colombo Cancellation Policy: Full refund on cancellation upto 24 hours prior to the start
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From shark meat to safari, get fired up in Sri Lanka

On this trip we’ve taken Sri Lanka, boiled it like the tea leaves the country is famous for and strained out the most delicious stuff. Wandering past barracuda at the Negombo Fish Market, searching for elephants in Yala, munching a spicy curry in Ella and getting horizontal on the beach in Unawatuna, this 11-day tour is a Sri Lanka snapshot.

Start- Negombo, Sri Lanka

Finish- Colombo, Sri Lanka

Ages- Min 18

Group- Size Min 1

Trip Type- Private

Why you’ll love this trip

  • Cruise around in a 4WD on a wildlife safari, searching for elephants and leopards, then relax lakeside at tranquil Tissa.
  • Shark, squid, barracuda and hundreds of things with fins that nobody knows the name of – visit the sensational Negombo Fish Market.
  • Learn the benefits of washing down a spicy curry with piping-hot Ceylon tea during lunch in a lush mountain village near Ella.
  • Leave the imprint of you face on the train window as you stare out wide-eyed from Kandy to Ella – it’s basically a 6-hour movie of amazing scenery.
  • Two days (and nights) on Unawatuna’s golden, palm-lined beaches can cure almost all of life’s problems, including any residual tightness in your photo-taking finger.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Can you feel that tingling in your fingers? That my friend is power! This trip puts it in your hands – there are few inclusions, so you’ll have plenty of freedom to decide what you want to do.
  • At 6 hours, the train ride from Kandy to Ella is the longest travel day. But the only reason you’ll want to get off this train is to charge your camera after what is basically a long, natural photoshoot.
  • The road from Ella to Tissa Lake winds down mountains to the coast, which means it can be frustratingly slow. It also means that you’ll get to see the awesome scenery from literally every angle.
  • Tourism in Sri Lanka is booming, resulting in a huge increase in visitors to Yala National Park. Overtourism and lack of sustainable management practices are of major concern to Intrepid, so in order to reduce our impact on wildlife and the environment, we are trialling visits in a less-touristed section of the park known as Block 5 or Veheragala. If we determine that Block 5 is also too crowded to visit responsibly, we will change our itinerary to visit Udawalawe National Park. Udawalawe is home to wild elephants, wild buffalo, sambar deer and leopards. This is the same itinerary we follow from September to mid-October when Yala National Park has closed annually for infrastructure development and rejuvenation.

Book now & pay later

Reserve your tour now and pay when you meet us. Send us the duly filled tour booking form, we will arrange your tour and you can make the payment as you meet us on the first day of the trip.

Best Price Guaranteed

We guarantee the best price. If you find the same tour package at a cheaper price elsewhere, we do match the price of other tour packages and furthermore add a further 10% discount to it.

No hidden fees and commissions

The price you see on the product pages is the exact same rate that you see in the final stage of the trip booking. There are no hidden fees and taxes such as GST, BTT, service charge, nation-building tax, hotel tax etc.

Trin Includes

  • 10 Nights accommodation in standard hotels
  • Daily Breakfast at hotel (11 breakfasts)
  • Transport air-conditioned private vehicle, Train
  • 1 Lunch

Trip Excludes

  • Entrance fees for
    • Sigiriya rock fortress
    • Dambulla golden cave temple
    • Tooth relic temple
    • Royal botanical garden
    • Polonnaruwa historical site
    • Victoria Park Nuwara Eliya
  • Any change in tax structure resulting from the hike in published tariff
  • Any video / still camera fee to the monuments and places of visit
  • Any others expense not mentioned on Price Includes section
  • Gratuities

Included activities

  • Negombo – Fishmarket
  • Matale – Spice Garden visit
  • Kandy – Scenic train ride to Ella
  • Ella – Trek to Ella Gap
  • Ella – Nine Arch Bridge
  • Yala/Bundala National Park – Wildlife safari
  • Galle – Walking tour
  • Galle – Scenic train ride to Colombo
  • Colombo – Walking tour
  • Colombo – Guided Market Visit

Important notes

  1. A single supplement is available on this trip and is valid for all nights on tour.
  2. Train tickets from Kandy to Ella are in very high demand and tickets for the train from Galle to Colombo cannot be pre-booked. We always try our best to secure tickets, though on the rare occasion that we cannot you will be provided with the vehicle to take you to your next destination.
  3. PASSPORT DETAILS: Full passport details are required for the train journey. Without them, we cannot purchase train tickets. Please advise them at the time of booking.

Trip Map

11 days tour map

No details found.

Itineraries

Day 1

Negombo

Welcome to Negombo, Sri Lanka. There are are no activities planned today so you're free to arrive at any time. Your adventure kicks off with a welcome meeting at 6 pm where you’ll meet your tour leader and fellow travellers. Although Colombo is the commercial capital and by far the largest city in Sri Lanka, it's still relatively small. You won't be staying in the capital itself, but in a place by the beach. There are plenty of beach bars, pubs and restaurants available close by.

Accommodation

Hotel (Paradise village resort, 1 night)

Optional Activities

Negombo - Spirit of Negombo Urban Adventure - USD60

Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

Special Information

If you can't arrange a flight that will have you arrive in time for today's welcome meeting, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please have these on hand.

Those who arrive early can dive straight into it by joining our local Urban Adventure - Spirit of Negombo. First check out the sights on foot and then take a leisurely boat tour, all while soaking up some epic views and learning all about the history and culture of Negombo. If you’d prefer to explore on your own, perhaps stroll the seaside observing the local fishing craft and perhaps feasting on fresh seafood. The beautiful surrounding countryside is best explored on a bicycle, which you can rent with help from the hotel reception.

Day 2

Negombo - Kandy

Head to the fish market in Negombo this morning. This can be quite an intense affair, but the variety of fish being presented by the locals is a great experience. From here, begin your journey by private vehicle to Kandy and visit a spice garden on the way, which should take around three hours in total (120 kilometres). On arrival to Kandy, there's an optional visit to the Temple of the Tooth (Dalada Maligawa), the most important shrine in the country. It's also worth attending a cultural show while in town - the Kandyan dance performances are awesome. The Royal Botanical Garden is just ten minutes away from your accommodation and there is access to the swimming pool of Kandyan Residencies (next door). Your evening is free to do as you wish.

Accommodation

Hotel (Senani hotel, 1 night)

Included Activities

Negombo - Fish market

Matale - Spice Garden visit

Optional Activities

Kandy - Temple of the Tooth - LKR2000

Kandy - Cultural performance - LKR1000

Kandy - Botanical Gardens - LKR2000

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 3

Kandy - Sigiriya - Kandy

Today is a free day to explore Kandy or perhaps organise a day trip to visit both Sigiriya Rock Fortress and the Dambulla Caves Temple. The World Heritage-listed temple has been a pilgrimage site for 22 centuries and for good reason, these interconnected caves offer ancient Buddhist cave art. At Sigiriya, also on the World Heritage list, you can scale the remains of an ancient fortress carved into the magnificent rock that juts from the low-lying plains. Chat to your leader and fellow travellers about organising and booking optional activities while in Kandy.

Accommodation

Hotel (Senani hotel, 1 night)

Optional Activities

Kandy - Botanical Gardens - LKR2000

Dambulla - Cave Temples - LKR1500

Sigiriya - Lion Rock - LKR4650

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 4

Kandy

Feeling a little worse for wear? If you’re looking to relax you might want to book an Ayurvedic massage to relax those weary muscles. Or if you haven't had a chance to visit the Royal Botanical Garden yet, then why not take a stroll around it today.

Accommodation

Hotel (Senani hotel, 1 night)

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 5

Kandy - Ella

This morning, say goodbye to Kandy as you hop on a train for around 6 hours to Ella. It’s a kinda long trip, but you can buy all sorts of yum treats from the onboard sellers. On arrival to Ella, check in to your accommodation which is within walking distance of the station. Once you've dropped off your luggage, perhaps head out for a visit to a local tea factory. If this doesn't take your fancy, go for dinner in one of the many local restaurants and bars.

Accommodation

Hotel (Ella gap hotel, 1 night)

Included Activities

Kandy - Scenic train ride to Ella

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 6

Ella

Venture out on an included half day trek to Ella Gap this morning. We'll stop in a small mountain village for a spicy curry lunch and a pot of Ceylon tea. This is an awesome way of getting to know the area and a great opportunity to rub shoulders with the locals. The rest of the day is then free to do what you want.

Accommodation

Hotel (Ella gap hotel, 1 night)

Included Activities

Ella - Trek to Ella Gap

Ella - Nine Arch Bridge

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 7

Ella - Yala

Head out of Ella in a private vehicle for around three hours to your resort on the edge of Tissa Lake. Once settled, you'll head out on a jeep safari where you'll come across the area's native wildlife such as elephants, leopards and aquatic birds. This is an amazing experience that you'll never forget. After your day in nature soak in the view from the lovely hotel pool overlooking lake Tissa.

Accommodation

Lakeside Resort (Hibiscus garden hotel, 1 night)

Included Activities

Yala/Bundala National Park - Wildlife safari

Meals Included

Breakfast

Lunch

Special Information

Tourism in Sri Lanka is booming, and with it has come a huge increase in visitors to Yala National Park. Overtourism and lack of sustainable management practices have become a major concern for us in continuing to visit Yala. In order to reduce our impact on wildlife and the environment we are trialling visiting a less touristed section of Yala, known as Block 5. Should we determine that high tourist numbers at Block 5 also make it difficult to continue visiting responsibly we will change our itinerary to visit Udawalawe National Park, where wild elephants, wild buffalo, sambar deer and leopards also reside.

From September through October when Yala National Park is closed annually for infrastructure development and rejuvenation we go on a jeep safari in Udawalawe National Park. Udawalawe is home to wild elephants, wild buffalo, sambar deer and leopards.

Day 8

Yala - Unawatuna

Journey west in a private vehicle for around three and a half hours to Unawatuna. This fantastic stretch of beach has plenty of local restaurants and bars to relax in. There are no included activities today, so you'll have plenty of free time to explore Unawatuna and its surrounds.

Accommodation

Hotel (Joes Unawatuna, 1 night)

Optional Activities

Mirissa - Whale Watching (Nov to Mar) - USD55

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 9

Unawatuna

Life’s a beach, so spend the day on one. With a book and a cocktail and a bottle of sunscreen. Possibly head out early on an optional whale watching tour or take a day trip to visit the Galle Royal Dutch Fort. Walk around the fort for free or 'bikesplore' the lesser known areas of the city on an Urban Adventure. You'll be staying at a guest house on the beach tonight, so make use of the many beach restaurants and bars that line the shore.

Accommodation

Hotel (Joes Unawatuna, 1 night)

Included Activities

Galle - Walking tour

Optional Activities

Galle - Dutch Fort - Free

Mirissa - Whale Watching (Nov to Mar) - USD55

Galle - Bikesplore Galle Urban Adventure - USD49

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 10

Unawatuna - Colombo

Leave Unawatuna behind and make the short journey to Galle, where you'll jump on a train to Colombo (approximately four hours). On arrival to Sir Lanka's capital, why not head out on an optional city walk with your leader? If you'd rather pick up some last-minute shopping, then pay a visit to the mass amounts of shops that are available. Tonight is free but your leader will suggest a spot for an optional final group dinner.

Accommodation

Hotel (Hotel Mirage, 1 night)

Included Activities

Galle - Scenic train ride to Colombo

Colombo - Walking tour

Colombo - Guided Market Visit

Meals Included

Breakfast

Day 11

Colombo

Have string hoppers and a super-black coffee for breakfast, then pull your saddest face as our trip comes to an end.

Optional Activities

Colombo - Colombo by Tuk Tuk Urban Adventure - USD55

Colombo - Eat, Eat, Repeat Urban Adventure - USD55

Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

  1. :

    This was my first guided tour and am so happy I did it! Our tour guide really helped us to see and experience the local culture of Sri Lanka which we would’ve never been able to experience on our own. Overall, 10/10 trip 🙂

  2. :

    The amazing trip. Saw the highlights of Sri Lanka, tasted the great food and made new friends. Would definitely recommend

  3. :

    Awesome trip – get ready for spicy food 🙂 Our guide Shatna was great, the itinerary covered all the highlights. Nice trip for a first visit of Sri-Lanka.

  4. :

    I’ll never forget my amazing time in Sri Lanka. It was an amazing experience.

  5. :

    Could not recommend Sri Lanka more. There is everything in this beautiful little country. From amazing hikes in Ella to the beaches in Unawatuna and visiting the National Parks for Jeep Safaris seeing a huge range of wild animals. The experience with Intrepid and our amazing guide Yasi make it 100x better. We love Seerendipity values and the way they are sustainable for the environment. We will recommend the company and country to all our family and friends.

  6. :

    Excellent trip with lots of cultural and natural activities. Incredible wildlife and nice beaches with Kaudulla National Park a must to see the Elephants!

  7. :

    Every single photo I’d seen of Sri Lanka did not prepare me for the beauty of this country. Serendipity made this travel dream an adventurous reality.

  8. :

    Nice friendly people, beautiful food and an amazing country!!! Loved this adventure through Sri Lanka!

  9. :

    What a country! what a nice trip! Thank you, Indy for making the experience unforgettable. Make sure you know he is available when you book!!

  10. :

    Suiresh Local guide was a really great tour guide, very informative and highly approachable. Accomodation was also very good

  11. :

    Ana amazing trip lots of beautiful memories. Trip was made amazing thanks to seerendipity and our great tour guide, Ranjan!

  12. :

    Excellent well organised trip, especially for solo traveller like myself! would definatly go on another trip with Intrepid everything is so organised!

  13. :

    From the hills of Ella to the beaches at Unawatuna and even elephant spotting in Udawalawa, Sri Lanka has a lot to offer and this trip shows you all the best bits. Our guide Suraj was excellent. Nothing was too big or too small and he really accommodated us. If you want to see Sri Lanka this is the trip.

  14. :

    This trip has been one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. Journeying through Sri Lanka as a solo Traveller with seerendipity has been no less than amazing and I’m glad I did it. From hikes to Sigirya in Kandy and Ella Rock to swimming with wild sea turtles in Unawatuna, Sri Lanka holds a special place in my heart.

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