Sri Lanka

VIBRANT CULTURES, STUNNING LANDSCAPES AND A RICH HISTORY

Code: LKWHW

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Activity types:

  • Culture
  • History
  • Wildlife

Level

  • 1
More information

Difficulty indicator

Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

From £2,335.00 - 13 to 14 nights

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Prices are per person

Room 1:
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Room 3:

Holiday overview

Download trip notes 2017

Download trip notes 2018

Discover the jewels of this beautiful island, from the grand, ancient city of Anuradhapura and the Temple of the Tooth in Kandy – the last home of the Sri Lankan kings – to the rich biodiversity of the grassland and cloud forests of Horton Plains National Park.

 

Holiday highlights

  • Great variety in a relatively small area
  • Explore the peaceful ruins of ancient cities dating back over 2,000 years
  • Walk in beautiful hill country, through tea estates with amazing views
  • Visit Kandy, the lively lakeside city in the hills with its sacred Buddha tooth relic
  • Receive a warm and friendly welcome from a very hospitable culture
  • Stay in excellent hill stations, beach resorts and colonial style guesthouses

In pictures...

Accommodation

We stay at a selection of mountain and beach resorts and colonial-style guesthouses with great character.

2017 Accommodation

Ramada-Hotel in Sri Lanka

Ramada Hotel, Colombo - 1nt

On arrival stay at the 4 star Ramada Hotel in the centre of the city, approx 45 mins transfer from the airport, and the perfect location from where we can explore the sights of Colombo.

Palm-Garden-Village-Hotel in Sri Lanka

Palm Garden Village Hotel, Anuradhapura - 2nts

Well equipped rooms are set in chalets in extensive gardens with a large swimming pool. A lovely place to relax after visiting the ancient cities. 

Cinnamon-Lodge in Sri Lanka

Cinnamon Lodge - 2nts

Cinnamon Lodge is located in the heart of Sri Lanka's 'Cultural Triangle'. Set in 27 acres of forested grounds, this is a peaceful place to relax. Each of the chalets is en-suite and offer spacious, comfortable rooms in a tranquil setting. There is a large outdoor pool too. 

Cinnamon Citadel in Sri Lanka

Cinnamon Citadel, Kandy - 3nts

We then transfer to its sister hotel, the Cinnamon Citadel. Situated in a peaceful setting just on the outskirts of Kandy, it has a pool and restaurant overlooking the river.  

Grand-Hotel in Sri Lanka

Grand Hotel, Nuwara Eliya - 3nts

A 4 star former colonial residence, this beautiful hotel is surrounded by lush green scenery. It provides us with the perfect base to explore the surrounding countryside and its tea trails. 

Mount-Lavinia-Hotel in Sri Lanka

Mount Lavinia Hotel, near Colombo - 2nts

A large coastal resort, once the residence of the British Governor, with a private beach, inviting pool and large terrace from which to watch the sunset. Two nights here provide the perfect finale to your holiday.


2018 Accommodation

None

Hotel OZO, Colombo - 1nt

On arrival stay at the 4 star OZO Colombo located in the centre of the city, and with stunning views of the Indian Ocean. Approx 45 mins transfer from the airport, and the perfect location from where we can explore the sights of Colombo.

 

Palm-Garden-Village-Hotel in Sri Lanka

Palm Garden Village Hotel, Anuradhapura - 2nts

Well equipped rooms are set in chalets in extensive gardens with a large swimming pool. A lovely place to relax after visiting the ancient cities. 

Aliya Resort & Spa

Aliya Resort & Spa - 2nts

Aliya Resort & Spa is located in the heart of Sri Lanka's 'Cultural Triangle'. Nestled in lush greenery and entrenched in the simple rural lifestyle of surrounding villages. In the distance a verdant thicket where elephants roam free coupled with panoramic and breathtaking views of Sigiriya the ‘Lion Rock’ and Pidurangala Rock Temple. Each of the rooms is en-suite and offer spacious, comfortable rooms in a tranquil setting. There is also a large outdoor view.

None

Hotel OZO, Kandy - 3nts

We stay again at one of the 4 star OZO hotels. This property is located in the historically rich setting of Kandy and offers views over the mist-covered mountains. Only minutes away from the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic it is a fantastic location from which to explore the surrounding area.

Grand-Hotel in Sri Lanka

Grand Hotel, Nuwara Eliya - 2nts

A 4 star former colonial residence, this beautiful hotel is surrounded by lush green scenery. It provides us with the perfect base to explore the surrounding countryside and its tea trails. 

 None

Hotel Amari,Galle near Colombo - 3nts

Overlooking the Indian Ocean the Amari Galle is a new (opened late 2016), 5 star hotel which features a private beach area, outdoor pool and spa. Each room has air conditioning and a private bathroom, and some feature a terrace or balcony from which you can enjoy the sunset. Three nights here provide the perfect finale to your holiday.

On occasion we may need to change the accommodation listed above. If this happens, your replacement accommodation will be of the equivalent standard or higher. In the rare instance this is not possible, we will contact you in advance.

Itinerary

Sri Lanka itinerary

Download trip notes 2017

Walks are mostly part day, walking in the cooler mornings and afternoons, exploring ancient ruins on foot, and walking on undulating paths through the hill country. Distances are between 2-7 miles (3.25-11.25km) on clear paths.

Days 1-2: Outward flight & Colombo

Flight to Colombo and transfer to your accommodation (1 night).

Buddha statue at AnuradhapuraDays 3-4: Around Anuradhapura

On our drive to Anuradhapura we'll visit a RAMSAR wetland area for a short walk. Stay at Anuradhapura (2 nights) for walks around the grandest city of ancient Ceylon, dating from the 2nd century BC. We climb the rocky hill of Mihintale, where Buddhism was introduced to Sri Lanka.

 

 

Sigiriya RockDays 5-6: Dambulla, Sigriya and Polonnaruwa

A nature walk in the Dambulla countryside gives an insight into village life. We then head to our relaxing resort, the Cinnamon Lodge (2 nights). Optional Jeep Safari at Minneriya Wild Life Park. (payable locally)

The next day we walk at the 5th century rock fortress of Sigiriya, also known as the 'Lion Rock', to see the remarkably well preserved frescoes of the Heavenly Maidens. Later we travel to the medieval city of Polonnaruwa and see the Gal Vihara statues.

Elephant safariDays 7-9: Kandy

Visit Dambulla Rock temple before travelling into hill country and the attractive city of Kandy (3 nights). We have time to explore the city on foot, visiting the excellent botanic gardens and the Temple of the Tooth. There is plenty of time to relax and discover some of the tea trails from our hotel.

 

 

WaterfallDays 10-12: Around Nuwara Eliya

Take the train through the hills to Hatton and continue by bus to picturesque Nuwara Eliya (3 nights). This small hill town is a well preserved example of colonial style from the era of the British tea plantations. Our walks here include tea trails along Gregory's Lake, walks searching for wildlife on the mist-shrouded Horton Plains, and a visit to the impressive Bakers Falls. 

 

 

Beach with palm treesDays 13-14: Mount Lavinia

A long journey to the coast at Mount Lavinia with a stop en route at Kitulgala. Our final day leaves us the option of relaxing by the beach at Mount Lavinia, or taking a trip to Galle. Enjoy a slap-up seafood farewell dinner on the beach as a final evening celebration.

 

 

Day 15-16: Colombo & return flight

Transfer to Colombo for our return flight home.

Itinerary 2018

Sri Lanka itinerary

Download Trip Notes 2018

Walks are mostly part day, walking in the cooler mornings and afternoons, exploring ancient ruins on foot, and walking on undulating paths through the hill country. Distances are between 2-7 miles (3.25-11.25km) on clear paths.

Days 1-2: Outward flight & Colombo

Flight to Colombo and transfer to your accommodation (1 night).

Buddha statue at AnuradhapuraDays 3-4: Around Anuradhapura

On our drive to Anuradhapura we'll visit a RAMSAR wetland area for a short walk. Stay at Anuradhapura (2 nights) for walks around the grandest city of ancient Ceylon, dating from the 2nd century BC. We climb the rocky hill of Mihintale, where Buddhism was introduced to Sri Lanka.

 

 

Sigiriya RockDays 5-6: Dambulla, Sigriya and Polonnaruwa

A nature walk in the Dambulla countryside gives an insight into village life. We then head to our relaxing resort, Aliya Resort & Spa (2 nights). Optional Jeep Safari at Minneriya Wild Life Park. (payable locally)

The next day we walk at the 5th century rock fortress of Sigiriya, also known as the 'Lion Rock', to see the remarkably well preserved frescoes of the Heavenly Maidens. Later we travel to the medieval city of Polonnaruwa and see the Gal Vihara statues.

Elephant safariDays 7-9: Kandy

Visit Dambulla Rock temple before travelling into hill country and the attractive city of Kandy (3 nights). We have time to explore the city on foot, visiting the excellent botanic gardens and the Temple of the Tooth. There is plenty of time to relax and discover some of the tea trails from our hotel.

 

 

WaterfallDays 10-11: Around Nuwara Eliya

Take the train through the hills to Hatton and continue by bus to picturesque Nuwara Eliya (2 nights). This small hill town is a well preserved example of colonial style from the era of the British tea plantations. Our walks here include tea trails along Gregory's Lake, walks searching for wildlife on the mist-shrouded Horton Plains, and a visit to the impressive Bakers Falls. 

 

 

Beach with palm treesDays 12-14: Mount Lavinia

A long journey to the coast at Mount Lavinia with a stop en route at Kitulgala. Our final day leaves us the option of relaxing by the beach at Mount Lavinia, or taking a trip to Galle. Enjoy a slap-up seafood farewell dinner on the beach as a final evening celebration.

 

 

Day 15-16: Colombo & return flight

Transfer to Colombo for our return flight home.

General Information

Passports
To enter Sri Lanka, passports should have one blank page and be valid for no less than six months from date of arrival.

Visas
All passenger arrivals (except Singaporean and Maldivian) to Sri Lanka must obtain ETA (Electronic Travel Authorisation), prior to their arrival by logging into  http://www.eta.gov.lk/slvisa/. The Visa required is a Double-Entry Tourists Visa applicable for 30 days from the date of arrival in Sri Lanka and costs US $40.

Important: All passengers traveling to Sri Lanka from 1 January 2012 are required to submit the following at the port of entry to Sri Lanka:
        a) Valid passport (not less than 6 months)
        b) A copy of the ETA approval notice
        c) Return air ticket
        d) Sufficient funds

Health advice
Before booking, you should check with your doctor to see if any health precautions are needed. The following websites provide a wealth of information on travelling and health: www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk    www.traveldoctor.co.uk

Your doctor may offer you vaccination against hepatitis A, hepatitis B, or typhoid if you haven't received one previously for travel. Routine immunisations, such as those that prevent tetanus / diphtheria, should be reviewed and updated as needed. Malaria is not a high threat in the areas that the holiday visits, although as the situation is ever-changing it is strongly advised that you consult a medical professional for up to date information. Cases of Dengue Fever have been reported in Sri Lanka, please take precautions against being bitten by mosquitoes.

Climate
Sri Lanka is warm and sunny year round with average temperatures of 27°C (80°F) on the coast and around 20°C (68°F) in the hills. It can rain at any time of the year, but the driest season in the west, south and central highlands is October to March.

Money
The currency is the Sri Lanka Rupee (Rs). Credit cards are accepted in most hotels and larger stores, but usually a charge will be added. Often the most convenient and economical way to obtain money is to use a credit or debit card to withdraw cash from an ATM machine. Visa cards are the most widely accepted by ATMs. The tourist board urges caution when paying by credit card due to the potential for fraud. It is recommended to bring cash in Pounds Sterling or Sri Lankan Rupees as the most convenient method of payment, particularly as much of the holiday is spent outside towns and cities. Traveller’s cheques are not advised.

Tipping
Tips are included on this holiday.

For flights information please see the Dates and Prices tab.

Leaders

Lonica Vanclay

Lonica is an enthusiastic traveller who has visited many different countries over the years and is particularly interested in their culture, history and geography. Asia especially India and Nepal are particular favourites and she is keen to share her knowledge and enthusiasm for the rich variety of these countries with guests. As she has travelled in these countries since the 1980s, she is able to share tales of how they have changed and developed over time. Born in the Netherlands, she grew up in Australia and has lived in London since 1982. She is a keen walker and regularly leads walks with the Long Distance Walkers Association as well as with HF Holidays. She has been leading for HF Holidays since 2005. 

Lonica is leading our 22 September 2017 departure.

Angela Passells

 Angela has been leading for HF Holidays since 1992 in the UK, Europe and Worldwide. She has travelled extensively in India and Nepal and is looking forward to accompanying you to Sri Lanka to experience the island’s culture, flora and fauna.

She has also led our Worldwide Holidays to Sikkim and Darjeeling, Bhutan, Nepal, Japan, Cuba, Morocco and New Zealand.

When not leading for HF Holidays, Angela enjoys travel to India, exploring Europe with her husband in their camper van, the natural world, and looking after their grandchildren.

Angela together with the local guide looks forward to helping make your trip enjoyable and a memorable one!

Angela is leading the 22nd February 2018 departure.

Reviews

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Dates & Prices

Here at HF Holidays, we pride ourselves in offering a unique holiday full of experiences that you can’t find with anyone else. Find out what's included in this holiday.

Date Description Nights Brochure price Book
21 Sep 2018 LKWHW - Jewels of Sri Lanka
(Travel included)

Flight - Outbound

SRI LANKAN AIRLINES

  • Depart: 21 Sep 2018, 9:30 p.m.
  • Arrive: 22 Sep 2018, 12:45 p.m.
  • Depart from: London Heathrow
  • Arrive at: Colombo Katunayake

Flight - Return

SRI LANKAN AIRLINES

  • Depart: 5 Oct 2018, 1:05 p.m.
  • Arrive: 5 Oct 2018, 8 p.m.
  • Depart from: Colombo Katunayake
  • Arrive at: London Heathrow
14 £2,895.00 Book Now
22 Sep 2018 LKWHW - Jewels of Sri Lanka - Without Flights 13 £2,335.00 Book Now

Prices are per person

Price includes

  • 13 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms
  • Half Board from dinner on arrival to breakfast on departure
  • A full programme of guided walks led by local guides, and HF Holidays’ leader
  • All sightseeing and entrance fees
  • Travel by air-conditioned coach/minivan or train
  • Tips

Other important information

  • Single room: £580 (2017) £670 (2018)
  • Non-member associate fee: £10 per person

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