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Trekking to the World's End
The day you’ve been waiting for is finally her Welcome to Colombo! Your first stop in Sri Lanka is its famous capital city, where buildings showing the historical influence of the Portuguese, Dutch and British line the streets.
Tonight you'll stay at the Galle Face Hotel, an iconic, colonial-style property right next to Colombo's rocky coastline. The expansive swimming pool and fresh sea breeze are perfect to help you recover from your flight and slip into Sri Lankan life.
THINGS TO DO
Tuk ride in Colombo
Tuk ride in Colombo
Take a thrilling tuk-tuk ride through Colombo, Sri Lanka's cosmopolitan ocean city.
Minneriya National Park
Activity & Adventure
Today you’re heading to Habarana, where you’ll be getting up close and personal with some of Sri Lanka’s most magnificent wild animals during an evening Jeep safari at the 8,890-hectare Minneriya National Park; home to elephants, leopards, and sambar deer.
On day 3 you’ll wake up early and full of anticipation as you’re off to visit the village of Hiriwaduna, which lies sprawled around a beautiful reservoir and is best explored on foot. Your trek will begin along a shaded gravel path, which leads through the ashen trunks of long-dead trees that peak against the lush, green vegetation of the wetlands in the background, making them the perfect spot for roosting egrets. You're sure to have built up an appetite so tuck into a delicious picnic in the cool shade, before crossing the reservoir and trekking through a dense banana plantation. At the end of it there’s a surprise as the path winds towards the home of a Chena farmer and his family. Here you will enjoy a refreshing king coconut before concluding your trek.
There’s more to see in the evening when you visit the World Heritage Site of Sigiriya. Rising 200 meters from the scrub jungle, the Lion Rock was the innermost stronghold of the 70-hectare fortified town and is surrounded by a moat, rampart, and beautiful water gardens.
For the next two nights, you'll call Cinnamon Lodge your home. Nestled amongst the lush forests of Habarana, the lodge boasts an expansive outdoor pool, butler service, private balconies, a spa, a tennis court, and even a butterfly garden!
Today you'll head to Kandy, the ‘city of hills’. In the afternoon you will want to be sure your camera batteries are charged when you discover the most sacred temple in the whole of Sri Lanka; the Temple of the Tooth. Wondering what makes it so special? This is where the tooth relic of Buddha is held! The striking, white and red temple houses intricate carvings and a holy shrine which is said to contain one of Buddha's teeth, taken from his funeral pyre. A walk through the temple to see the Tooth will give you a unique insight into Sri Lankan Buddhism practice.
Wildlife / Activity & Adventure
Still in the hill country, on day 5 you will be visiting the forest of Udawatta Kale. Once a forbidden forest by the Kings of Kandy, the natural beauty and the immense number of birds that visit make this an eco-tourist attraction not to be missed. Once you’ve had your fill of birdsong, you will continue your tour to Nuwara Eliya and settle down for the night, ready for another full day of adventure in the morning.
It’s time to get your hike on! You’re off to Horton Plains in the central mountain country, where some of the best tea in the whole of Sri Lanka is produced. This is the country’s highest plateau, standing at an impressive 7,200 ft above sea level. Hiking here is excellent, the conditions are cool and pleasant, and the area is populated by birds and butterflies making it quite idyllic. Marvel at the spectacle of such a wide variety of scenery, ranging from mountains to grasslands, marshes to trout streams. Whatever direction to face you will be blown away by the view, but arguably the best is the dramatic view from 'Worlds End’, where the plateau plunges straight down in a thousand feet sheer drop.
Spend the evening enjoying the picturesque scenery from the Ferncliff Bungalow. This unique heritage hotel was built in the 1800s, and you can enjoy home-cooked Sri Lankan food whilst looking out over rolling hills.
Yala National Park
Yala is a wildlife lover’s dream destination! Not only is the natural flora beautiful, but it’s also the location of Yala National Park; the second largest of Sri Lanka’s national parks. On day 7 you'll make the drive from the green hills of Nuwara Eliya to the Sri Lankan coast - your base for the next two nights. On arrival, you'll have some time to yourself.
On day 8 you will be heading straight to where the action happens for a morning safari at Yala National Park itself, well-known for its high concentration of bears, crocodiles, wild boar and, in particular, elephants and leopards. It's thought that Yala National Park has the world’s highest number of leopards per square kilometer, so the odds of spotting these beautiful cats are pretty good.
The contemporary Jetwing Yala will be your base for exploring Yala National Park. Not only is this property close to the National Park, but it is also right next to the wild beaches of Sri Lanka's southern coast. In your downtime, spend time walking on the beach and watching the surf, or lounging at the poolside bar.
Yala National Park
Following a hearty breakfast, you are off to explore the country's last viable area of primary tropical rainforest; Sinharaja. More than 60% of the trees and much of the wildlife and birds are endemic to the Sinharaja Rainforest and over half of Sri Lanka's endemic species of mammals, butterflies, insects, reptiles and rare amphibians are also found here.
You'll spend the night at the unique Rainforest Ecolodge. This property consists of individual chalets on stilts, resembling train carriages, perched over a small tea plantation and surrounded by rainforest. It's the perfect place from which to explore the rainforest and if you're lucky, you may even spot birds from your room.
There’s only one way to round off your incredible holiday, and that’s on a final morning nature trail. See what you can find as you wander around the trees and bushes, then relax as you transfer to Galle in the evening, where you will finish your holiday on the beach.
You'll spend 2 nights at the beautifully appointed Mosvold Villa. Situated on a serene stretch of beach, Mosvold is also right next to a reef patch which is great for snorkeling. Alternatively, you may wish to go on a whale-watching trip from Mirissa, or simply relax in a hammock on the beach.