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Classical Sri Lanka

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1st day

This morning arrive into Colombo on UL. Upon arrival you will be met by our airport representative who will assist you through the immigration and help with bags. Your English speaking chauffeur guide will be waiting to transfer you to nearby Kotugoda where you’ll spend the first night at The Wallawwa, a beautiful boutique hotel just 20 minutes from the airport.

2nd day

You will start the morning today with a visit to the Negombo Fish Market, located across the lagoon bridge. This fascinating fish market, known as Lellama by the locals is the second largest of its kind in the country. This is where the locals come to buy their daily fish, fresh from the seas.  You continue to Anuradhapura, the drive taking four hours. The rest of the day is at leisure.

3rd day

The morning is spent exploring the ancient cities of Anuradhapura and Mihintale, where the king was converted to Buddhism in 243 BC.  You will return to Ulagalla for mid afternoon and the rest of the day is at leisure.

4th day

After an early breakfast you drive to Sigiriya, which lies in the heart of Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle.  After the visit, drive & check-in at the beautiful Kalundewa Retreat hidden away within the beautiful village of Kalundewa in the historic town of Dambulla for one night.  Post lunch you visit Polonnaruwa the famous medieval capital of Ceylon, as Sri Lanka was known. After visiting Polonnaruwa museum, the afternoon is given over to an exploration of Polonnaruwa.

5th day

After breakfast this morning depart the hotel and travel to Dambulla to visit the Cave Temples, aiming to arrive at around 0930hrs. Next two nights at The Kandy House, a delightful 7 room house about 30 minutes from the centre of town.

6th day

The day is yours to relax in the comfortable surroundings of the Bungalow. If you are feeling like some outdoor activity, it is possible to take out the mountain bikes which are for the guests’ use and explore the country lanes in and around the house and the surroundings tea estates. You may like to visit the Botanical Gardens nearby (one hour visit).After lunch, you can visit the various gem and jewellery shops if you wish, otherwise take a walk by Kandy Lake. Early evening visit the famous Temple of the Tooth, which houses Sri Lanka’s most famous relic, a fragment of Buddha’s tooth. In the evening you take a tuk tuk up the hill to the residence of Rahju, a well known Sri Lankan artist of mixed Norwegian and Sri Lankan descent.  Return to the hotel for dinner.

7th day

Have breakfast at Kandy House, travel to Peradeniya where you will board the train which will take you up into the tea country. The journey affords spectacular views of the rolling tea country. Subject to availability we will get you tickets in the 1st Class observation car (Deluxe Cabin), which means you can have a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside. On arrival into Hatton you will be met by your chauffeur guide and transferred to your accommodation. Arrive at Tea Trails for lunch. Arrive in time for lunch and then rest of the day is yours at leisure.

8th day

Complimentary, and not to be missed, guided tour of the tea estate with the head planter, who will introduce you to the fascinating process of tea production.The tour will be followed by a tea tasting tour, before returning to your bungalow. Spend the rest of your time at tea Trails relaxing in the peaceful surroundings of the bungalow. You may choose to do one of the many walking trails which crisscross the estate, or why not walk from one bungalow to the next in time for either high tea or dinner.

9th day

This morning early start by road to Yala National Park (approx 6hrs) where you’ll be met by your hosts for the next 2 nights Leopard Safaris are pioneers of tented safaris in Sri Lanka. They offer abundant wildlife viewing opportunities deep inside the national parks, with an excellent chance of seeing leopards, elephants, bear, primates as well as a myriad of birds. By staying with Leopard Safaris you get to camp in the outer periphery of the park.

10th day

Early rise for your dawn game drive – unlike in Africa, leopards in Yala are not primarily nocturnal hunters, since they have no predators to fear, so they are often to be seen during the day. However the best time for seeing leopards in Yala is first thing in the morning as the sun is rising and last thing in the daywhen they generally walk and start thinking of hunting. The male leopards in Yala are very confident animals and they are often seen walking the jeep tracks during the day, and seem quite unaffected by jeeps, making it a photographers paradise. As well as leopards the large number of elephants can sometimes be seen wandering on the deserted beaches or bathing in the numerous watering holes in the park.  Enjoy a morning game drive and an evening game safari will be arranged.

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