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DAY 01 - AIRPORT / SIGIRIYA“
Ayubowan” On arrival at the recently refurbished Modern and State of the art International Airport, you will be blessed to get your first taste of warm Sri Lankan hospitality; Representative and proceed to Sigiriya…
(Approximately 4 hrs journey (150 km) from Airport to Sigiriya)
On the way visit Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage.
PINNAWELA ELEPHANT ORPHANAGE - Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage – set amongst the verdant hills of Kegalle is a unique orphanage, where the tiny tots weigh 60 kg or more. This is the Pinnewela Elephant Orphanage, the world's first and only elephant orphanage established to feed, nurse and house young elephants lost or abandoned by their mothers. Other occupants are elephants displaced from their natural environs by development projects or those found wounded. Visitors could see the baby elephants bei ng fed milk from gigantic feeding bottles or bathed in the river which flows nearby – an unforgettable sight! Established in 1975, by the Wildlife Department and National Zoological gardens which subsequently led to a breeding programme through which more than twenty five elephants have been born since 1984.
Reach to Sigiriya. Check in to the hotel
Evening visit Dambulla Cave Temple Located at an elevation of 1118 feet from the sea level raises a massive rock from the surrounding plains of Dambulla of 600 feet high and over 2000 feet in length It is home to the World’s most acclaimed Cave complex of magnificent Buddha Images and Rock Paintings of vivid colours and shapes constructed and painted from around 2nd Century BC (Anuradhapura era) and continued up to the Kandyan era of the 18th Century. Sinhalese people call it as ' Dambulu Gala' (Dambulla Rock) and the Temple is called as the 'Rangiri Dambulu Viharaya' (Golden Rock Dambulla Temple).
Overnight stay at Sigiriya
DAY 02 - SIGIRIYA
Breakfast at the hotel
Start the journey to climb the Sigiriya “Lion Rock”
Buddhist monastic settlements were established during the 3rd century BCE in the western and northern slopes of the boulder-strewn hills surrounding the Sigiriya rock. Several rock shelters or caves were created during this period. These shelters were made under large boulders, with carved drip ledges around the cave mouths. Rock inscriptions are carved near the drip ledges on many of the shelters, recording the donation of the shelters to the Buddhist monastic order as residences. These were made in the period between the 3rd century BCE and the 1st century CE.
In 477 CE, Kashyapa, the king’s son by a non-royal consort, seized the throne from King Dathusena, following a coup assisted by Migara, the King’s nephew and army commander. The rightful heir, Moggallana, fearing for his life, fled to South India. Afraid of an attack by Moggallana, Kashyapa moved the capital and his residence from the traditional capital of Anuradhapura to the more secure Sigiriya. During King Kashyapa’s reign (477 to 495 CE), Sigiriya was developed into a complex city and fortress. Most of the elaborate constructions on the rock summit and around it, including defensive structures, palaces, and gardens, date from this period.
Later afternoon leave for the safari at Minneriya national park
Jeep safari to Minneriya Wild Life Park to watch wild Elephants
MINNERIYA NATIONAL PARK - sitting in the centre of the cultural triangle, Minneriya is a good alternative to the busier parks in the south and it's easy to weave in a day here between visiting the ancient cities. The dry season, preferably from June to September, is the best time to visi t the 8,890 hectare park when the ancient tank, the lake that dominates the area, dries out and the grasses and shoots push through. During this time it is possible to see herds of up to 150 elephants feeding and washing, as well as toque macaques, sambar deer and leopards. The hungry bird flocks include cormorants and painted storks. Minneriya, closest by car to the ancient city Polonnaruwa, was upgraded from a nature reserve to a national park because of the increased number of tourists coming to see the elephants. wooden frame is placed on top of the elephant and 4 clients sit on this little platform for a one to two hour ride.
Overnight stay at Sigiriya
DAY 03 - SIGIRIYA / KANDY
Breakfast at the hotel
After proceed to Kandy.
(Approximately 2 ½ hrs journey (100 km) from Sigiriya to Kandy)
On the way visit Spice Gardens at Matale
Matale Spice Garden
During Past history Sri Lanka known as Taprobane, was world renowned for its Quality Spices. During ancient times the Greeks, Romans and the Arabic maintained their links with Sri Lanka through the spice trade. In the 16th century Ceylon, as it was then known, was discovered by Portuguese who soon began trading in cinnamon and other spices. The Dutch and British followed bringing with them their own history and influences, forming a strong Western presence which created a history of food expressed with spices which can be tasted in the dishes today.
Proceed to Kandy
Later city tour of Kandy including visits to the Temple of the Tooth Relic, Market Square and Upper Lake Drive
DALADA MALIGAWA or the Temple of the sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy is the most venerated place of worship for Buddhists througho ut the world. Built in the 16th century this temple houses the sacred Tooth Relic of the Buddha brought to Sri Lanka from the Kalinga province in ancient India in the 4th century AD. Several buildings have been added to the temple complex by successive rulers, the latest being the Golden Canopy over the inner shrine where the Tooth Relic is placed. Originally the Temple was within the King's palace complex as it was the symbol of Royal Authority.
Overnight stay at Kandy
DAY 04 - KANDY / NUWARA ELIYA
Breakfast at the hotel
After visit ROYAL BOTANICAL GARDENS.
ROYAL BOTANICAL GARDENS - at Peradeniya (109 km. from Colombo) near Kandy was laid out in 1821 by the British colonial rulers. Prior to that it was the Royal Pleasure Garden of the Kandyan Kings. It is located in a beautiful setting with the longest river of Sri Lanka, Mahaveli bordering on one side. This attractively laid out garden displays many varieties of floral and green plants. Special features are the Orchid House which displays a fine collection of Sri Lankan orchids, the fernery, spice garden, and the trees planted by distinguished visitors to the Island. Later afternoon proceed to Nuwara Eliya
(Approximately 5 hrs journey ( 180 km) from Sigirya to Nuwara Eliya )
On the way stop at Ramboda and visit Sri Bhaktha Hanuman Temple and Ramboda Falls
Ramboda the Ramboda area is believed to be an area where Rama’s forces were gathered against Ravana. RamPadai means Rama’s Force. The hills of Ramboda are also believed where Hanuman was searching for Sitadevi. The Chinmaya mission of Sri Lanka has built an Anjaneyar temple with Hanuman as the presiding deity. This temple is called Sri Baktha Hanuman temple and the image of lord Hanuman here is 16 Feet tall. The service time at the Sri Baktha Hanuman Temple is between 7:00 am to 12:00 noon and again 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Proceed to Nuwara Eliya
City tour at Nuwara Eliya
Nuwara Eliya is nicknamed “Little England” because It was established by the British in the 1840s as a as a base for the colonialists and still retains some of the British quirks, like the famous red post box.
Evening visit around Gregory Lake. Gregory Lake was build under the period of British Governor Sir William Gregory in 1873. This is the most prominent attraction in Nuwara Eliya and all the visitors used to come here and spent some time by the lake and relax. This was used as a place for water sports and for re-recreational activities during the British time.
Overnight stay at Nuwara Eliya
DAY 05 - NUWARA ELIYA / YALA
After the breakfast at the hotel depart to Yala
Evening safari in Yala National Park
Also known as Ruhuna is an important national park on the south east coast of Sri Lanka. The reserve covers 979 km², although only the original 141 km² are open to the public. Much of the reserve is parkland, but it also contains jungle, beaches, freshwater lakes and rivers and scrubland. The latter zone is punctuated with enormous rocky outcrops. The range of habitats gives rise to a good range of wildlife.
Yala has the world's highest concentration of Leopards, although seeing this largely nocturnal carnivore still requires some luck. There are good numbers of Asian Elephants, crocodile, Wild Boar, Water Buffalo and Grey langurs amongst other large animals. The open parkland attracts birds of prey such as White-bellied Sea Eagle and the wetlands have waders, Painted Storks, and the rare Black-necked Stork.
Overnight stay at Yala
DAY 06 – YALA / GALLE / BENTOTA
Breakfast at the hotel
Proceed to Bentota
(Approximately 4 hrs journey (215 km) from Yala to Bentota)
On the way city tour at Galle
The Port of Galle – Sri Lanka’s 04th biggest town is 115 km south of Colombo and close to Hikkaduwa. Galle is a town rich in history and in fact, was the centre of Dutch rule in the 17th century. The majestic Galle Fort bear sample testimony to that fact. The City of Galle is one of the best-preserved colonial-era cities in Southeast Asia, and has been declared a World Heritage City. Galle was a major port in Sri Lanka and still handles shipping and cruising yachts.
Optional: The Dutch Museum, Groote Kerk (Great Church) and the National Maritime Museum are some of the famous tourist attractions in Galle. The city is also famous for its delicate handmade lace and ebony carvings. The Galle International Cricket Stadium has also contributed to enhance the image of the city as a sports destination since of late.
Proceed to Bentota
Later visit Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery
The Turtle Care Centre at Kosgoda beach is one of 18 turtle hatcheries along the southern coast of Sri Lanka. The centre is located in the South Western coastal village of Kosgoda and was establised in 1981. It is also very popular as all five species of turtles that visit Sri Lanka nest in Kosgoda. This is not so with many of the other hatcheries around the island whose beaches host only some of the species.
Optional : Boat ride at Madu River
Overnight stay at Bentota
BENTOTA TO COLOMBO
DAY 07 – BENTOTA / COLOMBO / AIRPORT
Breakfast at the hotel.
Proceed to Colombo
(Approximately 2 hrs journey (85 km) from Bentota to Colombo)
Leave for city tour at Colombo
Colombo was probably known to Roman, Arab, and Chinese traders more than 2,000 years ago. Muslims settled there in the 8th century and controlled much of the trade between Sinhalese kingdoms and the outside world. The Portuguese arrived in the 16th century and built a fort to protect their spice trade. The Dutch captured the city in the 17th century. The British made the city the capital of their crown colony of Ceylon in 1802
Sightseeing highlights include the
Colombo National and Dutch period museums, old and new parliament houses, Gangarama Buddhist Temple, Town Hall, and the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall. Apart from excellent shopping, Colombo offers visits to one of the world’s leading tea auctions, an 18 hole Golf Course, seasonal Buddhist and Hindu pageants, international cricket tournaments, plush casinos, enjoyable evening entertainment and excellent restaurants. State-of-the-Art communications and Cyber services are available in the hotels and other outlets.
This is the last day of your Colombo trip; Clients proceed to the Colombo International Airport from where you can board the flight for your onward destination.