3*/4* Hotels (1 nt – Negombo; 1 nt – Dambulla; 1 nt – Kandy; 1 nt – Colombo)
Return aiport transfers
Sigiriya Rock Fortress & Golden Rock
Spice Garden & Royal Botanical Gardens
Holy Temple of the Tooth
Fort & Pettah
Dutch Church of Wolfendhal & Aukana Buddha Statue
Five centuries before Christ, Sri Lanka was a land throbbing with vitality and a well-ordered civilization. Cities, palaces, reservoirs, parks, temples, monasteries, monuments and works of art bore testament to the character, imagination, culture, philosophy and faith of the people of Sri Lanka, the Resplendent Land. Vestiges of this ancient civilization are abundantly extant today.
This tour ill take you to the following historical sites:
Colombo – the capital of Sri Lanka – is the largest city and main port of Sri Lanka. It is also the commercial and financial center of Sri Lanka. A bustling metropolis, the city is an attractive blend of old and new. It has the lazy charm of the bygone era combined with the verve and vivaciousness of a modern city. Colombo is an ideal location to start the Sri Lanka sojourn.
The Sri Lankan mystique perseveres, unfurling before the senses as soon you arrive: the heavy warm air, the rich green foliage, the luxuriant swirls of the Sinhalese alphabet, the multicoloured Buddhist flags, and the kaleidoscope of saris, fruits, jewellery and spices on display in the markets.
Kandy, the last royal capital of Sri Lanka is a major tourist destination. (115km from Colombo at 465 meters above sea level). Famous for the Temple of the Tooth and many other temples, the city could be called the cultural capital of the island. This bustling market town is rich in cultural diversity and has plenty to offer from songs dances and handy crafts to ancient temples and adventure activities. This sacred city is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Nothing in Sri Lanka captures the imagination more than a 200 meter lump of granite that rises starkly above the flat central plains. Sigiriya has it all – a blood-stained history full of intrigue, astonishing frescos of bare-breasted maidens painted 15 centuries ago, a wall covered in graffiti that is more than 1,000 years old and, to top it all, Asia’s oldest surviving landscape garden. This is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Dambulla Cave Temple is about 12 miles south west of Sigiriya. The largest cave carries some 48 statues of Lord Buddha alone, with statues of some Hindu gods, (Vishnu and Saman). The statues of the Hindu gods date back to the 12th century, when Hinduism took root in Sri Lanka and started influencing the arts. The history of the caves themselves dates back to the 2nd or 1st century B.C., when King Valagam Bahu who was escaping the invading army that drove him out of Anuradhapura, took refuge in these caves. This is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
ARRIVE ARRIVE BANDARANAIKE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, COLOMBO – NEGOMBO
Upon arrival in at Bandaranaike International Airport Colombo, you will be welcomed by our representative and transferred to Negombo.
Overnight in Negombo.
NEGOMBO – SIGIRIYA – DAMBULLA (B)
After breakfast, proceed to Sigiriya, a fascinating rock fortress which was the stronghold of a 5th century king who sought refuge. Often dubbed the 8th Wonder of the World, Sigiriya Rock Fortress is home to the 5th century “ Fortress in the Sky”. It is perhaps the most fantastic single wonder of the Island. Besides that, it is also known as Lion Rock because of the huge lion that used to stand at the entrance to the fortress. On its summit are the foundations of what was once a great and sumptuous palace and gardens complete with swimming pool.
Dambulla, an archaeological treasure is famous for its cave temple. Located 500 feet high and dating back to the 1st century BC it is the place where King Valagam Bahu, who was driven out of Anuradhapura, took refuge. When he regained his throne he converted the caves into a magnificent rock temple. Later kings made further improvements to the temple, including gilding of the interior, earning the name Ran Giri (Golden Rock). With its series of spectacular caves and a painted area covering 20,000 sq.ft. of Buddhist murals, Dambulla is an amazing place. It is both listed under the UNESCO World Heritage sites.
DAMBULLA – KANDY (B)
After breakfast, drive to the sacred city of Kandy, another UNESCO World Heritage site. En route, stop by Spice Garden in Matale to see the different spices which is famous in Sri Lanka.
Upon arrival at Kandy, take a sightseeing trip covering the Upper Lake Drive, Market Square, Art & Crafts Centre, Gem Museum, and the Royal Botanical Gardens which started in 1374 as a pleasure garden of the King of Kandy.
Next we will visit the Holy Temple of the Tooth (Sri Dalada Maligawa) – the most sacred shrine in Buddhism. Within this magnificent temple, the sacred Tooth relic of Buddha is enshrined.
In the evening, have an opportunity to witness a cultural show featuring various dance types of Sri Lanka.
KANDY – COLOMBO (B)
After breakfast, upon arrival in Colombo, take a drive through the city with a visit to the Fort, originally a fort during the Portuguese and Dutch periods. It is now a major commercial center for the country which housing major offices, big hotels, shops and restaurants.
Adjacent to the Fort is Pettah – Colombo’s leading bazaar district. It has narrow cobbled streets lined with shops and street stalls that offer the most fantastic bargains and the most unimaginable range of goods you can find. Probably the most famous street in Pettah is the mile long Sea Street which contains the capital’s goldsmith workshops and gold markets.
Next, visit the Dutch Church of Wolfendhal that dates back to 1749. Besides that, also take this opportunity to visit the Bandaranaike Memorial International Convention Hall or BMICH. Later, proceed to Aukana and look up at the Buddha statue which is 12 metres high, carved from living rock before heading to the Independence Square.
In the afternoon we will visit an exquisite Mlesna tea boutique. Mlesna tea is synonymous with ceylon tea with its innovative packaging. Go to Majestic City for some bargain hunting before visiting the Lanka Ceramic Centre, a place where you can buy noritake wares or other ceramic items.
Lastly, indulge yourself in a shopping spree at ODEL shop, Barefoot, House of Fashion and Beverly Hills before returning to the hotel where rest of the day is free at own leisure.
DEPART COLOMBO (B)
After breakfast, free at leisure until transfer to airport for your flight back home.