This 14-day trip through Sri Lanka and the Maldives is equal parts exploration and relaxation. Uncover the history and culture of this jewel of the Indian Ocean, from ancient rock fortresses and historic capital cities to the Sacred Tooth, before heading down to the Maldives for a few days in paradise. Start off in the coastal city of Negombo, then head north to Sigiriya and Dambulla and down through the Hill Country to Kandy and Ella. From there, go on an elephant safari in Udawalawa, relax in Unawatuna and explore the busy streets of Colombo, before winding up on the sunny beaches and crystal clear waters of the Maldives.
Sri Lanka Travel Insights
Journey through the heart of Sri Lanka on this 14-day loop around the island. Start your trip in the capital Colombo, before making your way to Adam's Peak for an early morning summit of this sacred mountain. From there, head to 'Little England' - Nuwara Eliya, and take the train to Kandy, the hill capital. Then, travel back in time to the historical sites of Sigiriya, Dambulla, Mihintale, and Anuradhapura, and stop to see elephants in Minneriya, before ending up on the beautiful sandy beaches and lagoons of Kalpitiya.
On this 10-day tour of Sri Lanka and the Maldives you'll enjoy the perfect mix of cultural exploration and beach-side relaxation. Starting on the tropical tear-drop island of Sri Lanka, learn about the country's centuries of history at temples, palaces, forts, and other UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Transfer to the Maldives islands, a short flight from Sri Lanka, where you can enjoy lazy days on the beach being as relaxed or active as you wish, perhaps snorkeling and windsurfing if you like.
This five-day mini-tour highlights the remarkable wildlife and pristine beaches of Sri Lanka’s Central and Southern Provinces. Start your journey on safari in Udawalawe and Yala National Parks, where you’ll spot elephants and leopards against a background of lush highlands. Next, you’ll head down the coast to the golden sands and turquoise waters of Mirissa and Bentota, before spending your final day in the vibrant capital of Colombo.
This diverse five-day itinerary introduces you to some of Sri Lanka’s most beloved cultural and natural wonders. Starting at the sacred cave temples of Dambulla, you’ll climb the great Sigiriya Rock Fortress, observe elephant herds in Minneriya National Park, and relax on the golden beaches of Bentota before ending your trip in the beautifully preserved fortified port of Galle.
The misty mountains of Sri Lanka's Hill Country take center stage on this engaging five-day itinerary. Start in the historic city of Kandy, then head south with an unforgettable train journey through the lush tea estates of the Central Province. After a night in the hilltop village of Nuwara Eliya, explore the flora and fauna of Horton Plains National Park before traveling to the west coast for your final night in the laid-back beach town of Negombo.
Discover the culture, heritage, wildlife, and beaches on this Sri Lankan journey. To start, visit the esteemed Dambulla Rock Temple. Then, climb Sigiriya Rock Fortress, followed by a trip to a local village, complete with a nature walk and an authentic meal on a working farm. Next, explore the temples and sights of Kandy and the scenic tea country of Ella. Stop for a safari at Yala National Park and then head to Weligama for an ancient fort tour, some whale watching, and four days of beach bliss.
October is the beginning of Sri Lanka’s off-season, so visitors can expect to benefit from lower prices and shorter lines at the attractions. At this point, the summer crowds are gone and the winter ones haven't yet arrived. The inter-monsoon season brings intermittent rain and thunderstorms throughout the island.
September is shoulder season in Sri Lanka. It’s a good opportunity to take advantage of thinner crowds and lower prices, before October brings in the rain and thunderstorms of the inter-monsoon period.
In August, the southwest monsoon is nearing its end in Sri Lanka. With lower rainfall than surrounding months and many tourists from the northern hemisphere on summer vacation, it’s a popular time to visit. Consider a trip to Trincomalee or Yala National Park for wildlife spotting, celebrate the Kandy Perahera, or witness one of the country's largest temple festivals in Jaffna.
Sri Lanka’s two distinct monsoon seasons truly make it a year-round destination. While July is a wet month in southwestern Sri Lanka, the island’s northeastern half will be dry. This is a good time to explore national parks, wander along deserted beaches, and enjoy July’s colorful festivals.
In June, the southwest monsoon rains are falling over Sri Lanka. Colombo is damp and humid, and the island’s southern beaches and mountainous center are experiencing intermittent rainfall. Sri Lanka’s northeastern half will be dry, however, making this a good time to explore the island’s less-touristed regions.
November is shoulder season in Sri Lanka. The rain and thunderstorms of the inter-monsoon season keep away the crowds, so visitors can enjoy lower prices and shorter lines. Consider traveling near the end of the month, when the weather in the southwest of the country starts to clear up.
December is the beginning of Sri Lanka’s high season. The main tourist areas in the southwest will be cool and dry, and Buddhist pilgrims start flocking to the summit of Sri Pada, or Adam’s Peak. This is a great month to visit Colombo, Kandy, and the island’s most developed beaches.
In May, the southwest monsoon will have started in Sri Lanka, and travelers can expect several hours of rain per day in Colombo and on the island’s southern beaches. On the other hand, the northeast monsoon will be over; this is a great month to check out northern and eastern Sri Lanka, the Cultural Triangle, and the hill country.
April is considered a shoulder season in Sri Lanka. The weather's generally good during this month, although the southwest starts to experience heavy evening thunderstorms during this “inter-monsoon” period. Visitors to Sri Lanka in April can enjoy reasonable weather in both the north and south of the island, with fewer crowds than at other times of year.
March is the last month for excellent beach weather in the southwest of the island, and the peak tourist season is winding down at this time along with the sunny skies. The Cultural Triangle is dry, and the north and east don’t receive too much rain this month, making it a great time to visit.
By February, peak tourist season is well underway in Sri Lanka. The beaches in the southwest are pleasant and dry, and the northeast monsoon is winding down. The Cultural Triangle also has good weather at this time.
January is part of the high season in Sri Lanka, when the main tourist areas in the southwest are cool and dry. While the monsoon season is still going on in the northeast of the country, the late autumn rains in the "Cultural Triangle" will have mostly finished by now, making it a good time to visit the island’s historic sites.
Experience Sri Lanka's top historic attractions with enough time to relax on a number of breathtaking beaches on this two-week adventure. You'll begin in Negombo and work your way around the island stopping to visit sprawling temple complexes, ancient Buddhist and Hindu shrines, as well as unique cave temples and palaces carved into mountainsides and standalone rocks. Along the way, you'll stay two nights amid wildlife in Wilpattu, enjoy the calm coastline in Pasikudah, and explore charming colonial villages.
This 12-day honeymoon is perfect for couples who love exotic wildlife and natural scenery. Starting from the capital, you'll circle the island-nation exploring a boggling array of national parks, rainforests, ancient villages, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and Buddhist relics. After each day of sightseeing with your private guide, you'll have quality time (alone) at your accommodations—a fun mix of resorts, beach hotels, and safari camps—for the ultimate romantic adventure.
This 9-day journey through Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon) explores fascinating highlights in the Cultural Triangle—home of ancient cities, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and Buddhist relics. With a private driver and guide, you'll take hikes in tea country, spot diverse wildlife in the rainforest, and relax (or surf) on picturesque beaches on the south coast for an adventure to remember.
This 8-day itinerary takes you to the heart of Sri Lanka for ancient history, Buddhist culture, and exciting adventures in nature. From Negombo (near the capital), you'll experience a slew of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, tour a tea plantation, meet elephants, and explore towns loaded with Portuguese and Dutch colonial history. End each day with an opportunity to catch an alluring sunset that only South Asia can offer.
Known as the "Jewel of the Indian Ocean," Sri Lanka is famed for its centuries of history and exotic tropical wildlife. Explore the island's top destinations through this introductory tour that will satisfy both nature lovers and cultural enthusiasts alike.
This is the quintessential Sri Lankan bike ride! On this two week trip, you will discover local tea plantations, small villages, and historically significant cities — along with some wonderfully diverse riding through a sizeable portion of the island. You'll cycle from the culturally rich north through tea country then down into the southern plains and Horton Plains National Park, finishing in Galle.
From UNESCO World Heritage Sites to tucked-away temples to bustling cities, this tour has a little something for every type of traveler. Spend your days exploring lively cities like Kandy and Negombo, snorkeling colorful reefs at Pasikudah, and wandering through ancient ruins in places like Polonnaruwa for a diverse experience in this beautiful, culturally rich country.
This seven-day Sri Lankan tour winds its way through three national parks full of wildlife and a coastline with the longest whale season in the world. Keep your camera and binoculars at the ready. Here you're likely to see sloth bears, elephants, leopards, flamingos, whales, and dolphins aplenty.
Discover the best Sri Lanka has to offer, from pristine beaches to Buddhist temples. This extensive tour takes you across the island's eastern coast and inner highlands, where will encounter three UNESCO World Heritage Sites and countless natural and man-made wonders.
From sacred Buddhist temples to rugged mountains, this six-day tour will take you through the best that Sri Lanka has to offer. Split your time between historic cities, ancient stone fortresses, and the Sri Lankan Highlands as you soak up the history, culture, and landscapes of this unique country.
Perfect for active travelers and nature-lovers, this 10-day tour covers everything from sunny coastlines to national parks to tea plantations. Walk, swim, and drive your way through rainforests, across sandy beaches, and - if you're lucky - past some of the country's most exotic wildlife.
If you're looking to spend some time relaxing on the beach in Sri Lanka, there are many great beaches to choose from. Which one you end up at will probably depend on the time of year you travel and on the overall route of your tour.
From dreamy rice fields to sprawling tea plantations, rural villages to nature preserves teeming with wildlife, the range of Sri Lanka's geographical and cultural treasures is astounding—and there's no better way to see it all than on two wheels. Find out how to navigate the roads, weather, and more with this comprehensive guide to cycling in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka is a compact country so domestic flights are limited. Newer highways are reducing travel times for those who take the bus. However, trains are the more comfortable way to get around. The best way to see Sri Lanks is on a bike and there is an excellent network of roads to get you around to every corner of the country.
This epic 14-day Sri Lanka adventure begins at the coast, heads through the central highlands before looping back to Colombo. In between, you'll explore some of Sri Lanka's best sights, including ancient hilltop forts, wildlife-filled nature reserves and gorgeous beaches. Sri Lanka's unique Buddhist culture and hospitality will be on display as you round every corner of the country.
An intact flora and fauna collection is one of Sri Lanka’s greatest assets and a couple of park visits are a great way to break up your tour. Horton Plains, Yala, and Udawalawe National Parks are often the highlights, but each park has its own unique way to avoid the crowds and have an amazing experience.
In Sri Lanka, warmth and good weather can be found year-round on the different parts of the island. Thanks to the country’s relatively small size, a getaway spent chasing pockets of favorable weather can be a great way to see the entire island’s many highlights. Below, we've put together a guide for planning when to visit each region of Sri Lanka.
This cycling tour takes you to Sri Lanka's top cultural sites and also off the beaten path. Cycle along rice fields, tea plantations, and tranquil villages to reach ancient kingdoms rich in history and culture. You also have the chance to explore Sri Lanka's wildlife parks to see herds of elephants roam the wild country.
For travelers looking for an authentic cultural experience with tours of Sri Lanka’s ancient sites, this is a great itinerary. It starts in the relaxing colonial fishing village of Negombo and ends in the lively modern city of Colombo.
Looking for a great combination of Sri Lanka's best natural and cultural sights? During this 10-day tour, explore the world-famous cultural sights of Sigiriya, Kandy, and Galle. Experience the breathtaking beauty the Sri Lankan nature and wildlife with trekking, white water rafting, and a safari adventure!