Tailormade tour The Sri Lanka Explorer tour Sri Lanka

11 nights/12 days

Galle • Yala National Park • Tea Country • Sigiriya • Anamaduwa • Kalpitiya

This explorer tour of Sri Lanka incorporates wildlife safaris at Yala National Park, a stay in Tea Country and a chance to explore the Cultural Triangle. Also, you have the chance to get quite off the usual tourist beaten track with a stay in The Mudhouse in the little explored Puttalam district and a chance to go dolphin watching or even to spot some whales in Kalpitiya.
Holiday price guide

Available year-round subject to the opening period of the hotels, from about £3,370 per person.

Luxury touring holiday exploring the uniqueness of Sri Lanka with driver-guide featuring experiences including a safari, and stays on a tea plantation and in the rainforest

This 11-night tour takes you first from London to Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo. Your chauffeur-guide will take you first to Galle Fort, where you will spend one night inside the historic fort. Explore this historic area, before departing on the second day for a tented safari camp, where you will stay for two nights. On day four, begin your journey north, stopping for two nights at the heart of the Tea Country. Take the time to wander through the tea estates and visit one of the tea factories. Then, head further north to Sigiriya and a visit of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress. On your eighth day, you travel to Anamaduwa, where you will spend two nights at the very rustic Mudhouse. Then, carry on to the coast and spend two nights at the authentic Palagama Beach Resort. After relaxing on the beach and dolphin-watching, return to the airport on your twelfth day.

Highlights

Galle • Yala National Park • Tea Country • Ambewala • Sigiriya • Hiriwaduna • Anamaduwa • Kalpitiya

Day by day

You will be met on arrival in Colombo and driven by your English-speaking chauffeur guide who will accompany you throughout your tour of Sri Lanka. Drive to Galle Fort (approximately 2.5 hours) to check-in for 1 night. Depending on your flight arrival time, take a walk around Galle Fort and enjoy some sightseeing. Its rich heritage derives from the colonial influences of the Portuguese, Dutch and the British respectively, spanning four centuries. Galle was a key harbour city for centuries, hence its value to successive colonial superpowers. The town’s centrepiece, the Dutch Fort, remains a hive of activity and is one of the few UNESCO World Heritage listed sites in which a bustling population continues to thrive.

In the morning, drive to Yala (approximately 5 hours). You will be taken into the Yala National Park in a 4WD jeep, where you will be camping in style here for the next 2 days (just outside the park). Enjoy lunch at the Mahoora tented safari camp followed by an afternoon safari. Yala National Park is famous for its leopards. The best chance to see a leopard is at dawn and dusk. Male leopards can often be seen walking the tracks during the day.

Spend the day enjoying a full day safari at Yala National Park. In addition to the leopards, there is a large number of elephants living in the park. Spotted deer, sambar, wild boar, wild buffaloes, sloth bear, jackal and mongoose can also be seen. The bird life is fantastic too. Enjoy a fine al fresco dinner back at the camp.

After breakfast, drive to the hill country of Ambewala (approximately 6 hours). You will be staying at Jetwing Warwick Gardens for 2 nights. On arrival, walk around the property with the resident manager to learn about the history of the property. This old colonial ‘bungalow’ was built in the style of a Scottish country mansion over a century ago and offers a home from home experience.

Tea Country emits a breath-taking panorama of colour with beautiful gardens, cascading waterfalls, lakes and sweet mountain air. Spend your day enjoying these beautiful sites. You could also visit a tea plantation and a tea factory.

After breakfast, set off on the journey to Sigiriya in the Cultural Triangle (approximately 5.5 hours). En route, visit Kandy, the last capital of the Sinhalese kingdom. Sightseeing will include the famous Temple of the Tooth as well as the beautiful Peradeniya Botanical Gardens. On arrival in Sigiriya, check into Jetwing Vil Uyana for 2 nights.

Today, you will be taken to the Hiriwaduna village (approximately 30 minutes) for a small nature trail where you will cross a lake in a traditional local boat. Afterwards, enjoy a typical Sri Lankan style rice and curry in a local village where you can talk to the villagers. In the afternoon, visit Sigiriya rock fortress - a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Known as Lion Rock, this was built in the 5th century during the reign of King Kasyapa.

Drive to Anamaduwa (approximately 3.5 hours) where you will experience the lifestyle of a typical Sri Lankan village in The Mudhouse for 2 nights. Nestling in sixty acres of forest in the ancient rural heartlands of Sri Lanka, this is a private and seductive rustic retreat, far from the beaten track providing an authentic back to nature experience.

Enjoy a day relaxing at the hotel.

Today, drive to Kalpitiya (approximately 2 hours) and check-in to the Palagama Beach Resort for 2 days at leisure on the beach.

While you are here, you could opt to do some water sports or go dolphin watching. There is also a chance of spotting whales in season. The Palagama is not a grand resort but offers quiet sunsets, good food and a friendly atmosphere.

Transfer to the airport (approximately 4 hours’ drive).

We were incredibly impressed by our guide/driver. He helped make the trip. The holiday exceeded our expectations.
Mrs A, January 2019

Holiday price guide From about £3,370 per person based on two people sharing a double room and including for economy flights from London.

Holiday Code SLDG09

Luxury touring holiday exploring the uniqueness of Sri Lanka with driver-guide featuring experiences including a safari, and stays on a tea plantation and in the rainforest

You will be met on arrival in Colombo and driven by your English-speaking chauffeur guide who will accompany you throughout your tour of Sri Lanka. Drive to Galle Fort (approximately 2.5 hours) to check-in for 1 night. Depending on your flight arrival time, take a walk around Galle Fort and enjoy some sightseeing. Its rich heritage derives from the colonial influences of the Portuguese, Dutch and the British respectively, spanning four centuries. Galle was a key harbour city for centuries, hence its value to successive colonial superpowers. The town’s centrepiece, the Dutch Fort, remains a hive of activity and is one of the few UNESCO World Heritage listed sites in which a bustling population continues to thrive.

In the morning, drive to Yala (approximately 5 hours). You will be taken into the Yala National Park in a 4WD jeep, where you will be camping in style here for the next 2 days (just outside the park). Enjoy lunch at the Mahoora tented safari camp followed by an afternoon safari. Yala National Park is famous for its leopards. The best chance to see a leopard is at dawn and dusk. Male leopards can often be seen walking the tracks during the day.

Spend the day enjoying a full day safari at Yala National Park. In addition to the leopards, there is a large number of elephants living in the park. Spotted deer, sambar, wild boar, wild buffaloes, sloth bear, jackal and mongoose can also be seen. The bird life is fantastic too. Enjoy a fine al fresco dinner back at the camp.

After breakfast, drive to the hill country of Ambewala (approximately 6 hours). You will be staying at Jetwing Warwick Gardens for 2 nights. On arrival, walk around the property with the resident manager to learn about the history of the property. This old colonial ‘bungalow’ was built in the style of a Scottish country mansion over a century ago and offers a home from home experience.

Tea Country emits a breath-taking panorama of colour with beautiful gardens, cascading waterfalls, lakes and sweet mountain air. Spend your day enjoying these beautiful sites. You could also visit a tea plantation and a tea factory.

After breakfast, set off on the journey to Sigiriya in the Cultural Triangle (approximately 5.5 hours). En route, visit Kandy, the last capital of the Sinhalese kingdom. Sightseeing will include the famous Temple of the Tooth as well as the beautiful Peradeniya Botanical Gardens. On arrival in Sigiriya, check into Jetwing Vil Uyana for 2 nights.

Today, you will be taken to the Hiriwaduna village (approximately 30 minutes) for a small nature trail where you will cross a lake in a traditional local boat. Afterwards, enjoy a typical Sri Lankan style rice and curry in a local village where you can talk to the villagers. In the afternoon, visit Sigiriya rock fortress - a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Known as Lion Rock, this was built in the 5th century during the reign of King Kasyapa.

Drive to Anamaduwa (approximately 3.5 hours) where you will experience the lifestyle of a typical Sri Lankan village in The Mudhouse for 2 nights. Nestling in sixty acres of forest in the ancient rural heartlands of Sri Lanka, this is a private and seductive rustic retreat, far from the beaten track providing an authentic back to nature experience.

Enjoy a day relaxing at the hotel.

Today, drive to Kalpitiya (approximately 2 hours) and check-in to the Palagama Beach Resort for 2 days at leisure on the beach.

While you are here, you could opt to do some water sports or go dolphin watching. There is also a chance of spotting whales in season. The Palagama is not a grand resort but offers quiet sunsets, good food and a friendly atmosphere.

Transfer to the airport (approximately 4 hours’ drive).

Holiday price guide From about £3,370 per person based on two people sharing a double room and including for economy flights from London.

Holiday Code SLDG09

Our prices include ● Return scheduled flights with British Airways or Sri Lankan Airlines to Colombo in economy class
● 1 night’s bed and breakfast in Galle
● 2 nights’ accommodation and all meals at Mahoora Tented Camp
● 2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Ambewala
● 2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Sigiriya
● 2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Anamaduwa
● 2 nights’ bed and breakfast in Kalpitiya
● Private English-speaking chauffeur-guide in an air-conditioned Japanese car throughout the itinerary
● Entrance fees to the monuments listed above
● Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

Our prices do not include ● Visas (A visa is a requirement for entry to Sri Lanka and can be obtained on line from www.eta.gov.lk)
● Early check-in or late check-out at any hotels (although we can arrange this on request at additional cost)
● Any other services not mentioned above, such as transfers and meals except breakfast at hotels
● Personal holiday insurance. This is essential and cover should be in place from when you book the holiday.
● Local tourist tax, payable locally to the hotel
● Camera fees where applicable
● Optional excursions – to be pre-booked and at a supplement

This holiday can be arranged throughout the year. Timings can vary depending on the month and day of the week.
Hotels included in this tour
Galle
The Fort Printers

The Fort Printers Hotel is a charming, exclusive small boutique hotel in a fantastic central location. Excellent cuisine, luxurious accommodation and a serene walled garden with pool make this the ideal haven from the bustle of Galle.

Standard room

Yala National Park
Mahoora Safari Camps

Mahoora Safari Camps at Yala offers exclusive luxury tented wildlife camping in style. Indulgent al-fresco dining and excellent guided safaris afford guests a truly unforgettable experience in Sri Lanka's wilderness.

Luxury

Ambewala
Jetwing Warwick Gardens

Warwick Gardens resembles a luxurious English country home with the added attractions of stunning Sri Lankan mountain scenery, deliciously fragrant curries and friendly service from the Sri Lankan staff.

Deluxe room

Sigiriya
Jetwing Vil Uyana

Jetwing Vil Uyana is a luxury boutique hotel in a stunning rural location. Oneness with nature is key to this hotel and guests can experience it in the cuisine, stunning grounds and excellent spa facilities.

Forest dwelling

Anamaduwa
The Mudhouse

The Mudhouse is an exclusive, eco-retreat in a beautiful natural location. Tradition is at the heart of this resort, from hut accommodation to clay-pot cooking. An unmissable spot to unplug from the modern world and get back to basics.

Standard room

Kalpitiya
Palagama Beach

Palagama Beach is an exclusive, small luxury boutique hotel in a beautiful coastal location. With a focus on offering a unique experience of Sri Lanka, it offers luxury service, unforgettable natural experiences and luxurious, serene experience.

Wooden cabana

Holiday price guide

From about £3,370 per person based on two people sharing a double room and including for economy flights from London.

Holiday Code SLDG09

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