(14 Days - Departs Daily on a Private Basis)
Colombo, Cultural Triangle, Kandy, Hill Country, Yala National Park, Tangalle, Galle
This in-depth private tour of Sri Lanka features a full range of the country's most interesting cultural, culinary, scenic and wildlife experiences. Highlights include touring ancient Buddhist sites, visiting tea and spice plantations, exploring colonial sites, interacting with elephants, visiting markets, private wildlife safaris, a scenic train ride, a Sri Lankan cooking lesson, and staying in Sri Lanka's most exclusive and luxurious resorts.
Begin in Colombo, the vibrant capital of Sri Lanka, with private touring of historic sites, bustling markets and interesting neighborhoods.
Next, explore the Cultural Triangle, a region filled with fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Tour the ancient Buddhist cities of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa. See monumental stupas, ruined palaces and sculptures carved in stone. Visit one of Sri Lanka's most revered Buddhist sites, a temple built around a sacred bo (bodhi) tree thousands of years old. At Mihintale, see a beautiful water garden, abandoned monasteries and centuries-old stone staircases shaded by frangipani trees. Alternatively, spot wild elephants and other animals in Minneriya National Park.
Visit Sigiriya, an ancient rock citadel that's Sri Lanka's most spectacular attraction. See the Sigiriya Damsels frescoes, which were painted on the rock walls centuries ago, and climb to the top of the rock to explore the ruins of a fifth-century palace and take in panoramic views over farmland, forest, lakes and mountains. One afternoon, enjoy a private elephant experience at a local lake, including bathing the elephants, feeding them and walking next to them, if desired. In nearby Dambulla, tour impressive cave temples filled with Buddhist sculptures and vibrant religious paintings.
Continue to Kandy, a former royal capital in the hills. En route, visit a spice plantation to learn how different spices—including Sri Lanka's renowned cinnamon—are grown and harvested. In Kandy, see a puja (religious ceremony) at the Temple of the Tooth, a UNESCO site dedicated to a sacred relic of the historical Buddha. Also, visit a local market, and tour the Royal Botanic Gardens in Peradeniya. In the evening, enjoy a private performance of traditional Sri Lankan dance and fire walking.
Venture into the Hill Country, where verdant tea plantations cover rolling mountains. Stay at Tea Trails, an atmospheric hotel set in several renovated tea planters' cottages. Tour a historic tea factory to learn about tea picking and processing, and also sample different types of high-quality Sri Lankan tea. During leisure time, hike through the tea fields or relax by the pool.
Next, enjoy a scenic train ride through the beautiful mountains of the Hill Country to Ella, taking in views of tea plantations, terraced farms, waterfalls and native forest along the way. Descend from the mountains to Yala National Park for a safari in Sri Lanka's most renowned wildlife reserve. During private game drives in the park, search for colorful birds, wild elephants and elusive leopards.
Relax for a couple of days at Amanwella, an exclusive luxury resort overlooking a palm-shaded beach on the southern coast of Sri Lanka outside Tangalle. One morning, enjoy a private market tour and cooking lesson to learn to prepare traditional Sri Lankan curry and rice. During leisure time, swim in your private plunge pool or the infinity-edge main pool overlooking the Indian Ocean. Or, enjoy optional activities such as whale watching, nature walks, private surfing lessons or visits to other cultural sites. Another option is seeing wild elephants in Udawalawe National Park.
Continue along the south coast to Galle, an ancient fortified port and UNESCO site with a colonial-era atmosphere and unique mix of cultures. En route, visit diverse attractions that illuminate regional history, such as a Dutch colonial fort, a lace-making workshop and a folk museum dedicated to preserving Sri Lanka's traditions. Stay in the heart of the Galle Fort historic district at Amangalla, one of the finest and most romantic luxury resorts in Sri Lanka. During private touring, visit local museums, explore evocative backstreets, walk on the sea walls to the lighthouse, look for reminders of the Dutch and British colonial years, observe daily life, and browse local shops, some of the best in the country. Also, enjoy flexible private excursions to regional highlights such as a sea turtle hatchery, a traditional mask workshop, and the private country estate of Geoffrey Bawa, Sri Lanka's most acclaimed modern architect.
We can easily combine our private Sri Lanka tours with destinations in the Maldives, India, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Oman.
VIP airport assistance. Private arrival transfer to hotel for 1 night. Afternoon flexible private city tour
||Colombo – Cultural Triangle
Scheduled flight or private transfer to hotel for 3 nights. Afternoon private elephant experience
||Cultural Triangle: Mihintale & Anuradhapura
Full-day private tour
||Cultural Triangle: Polonnaruwa & Sigiriya
Full-day private tour
||Cultural Triangle: Dambulla – Kandy
Private transfer to hotel for 1 night with private touring en route. Evening private dance performance
||Kandy – Hill Country
Morning flexible private tour. Afternoon private transfer to hotel for 2 nights
Morning tea factory tour. Afternoon at leisure
||Hill Country – Ella – Yala National Park
Private transfer to train station. Morning first-class train from Hatton to Ella. Private transfer from Ella to hotel for 2 nights
||Yala National Park
Morning private game drive. Afternoon private game drive or at leisure
||Yala National Park – Tangalle
Morning private game drive. Afternoon private transfer to resort for 2 nights
Morning private cooking lesson
||Tangalle – Galle
Private transfer to resort for 2 nights with touring en route. Afternoon private tour of Galle Fort
||Galle & environs
Full-day flexible private tour of the region
Private airport transfer and VIP airport assistance
Shangri-La Colombo or Tintagel
||Water Garden Sigiriya
||Kings Pavilion or Kandy House
||Ceylon Tea Trails
|Yala National Park:
||Wild Coast Tented Lodge Yala or Chena Huts
||Per person (double occupancy)