Wildlife And Sightseeing Tour - 10 Nights


From £1737 £1348 /pp

Just returned from a 2 week holiday in Sri Lanka. Had a great time!
by Smith

020 8385 6868


This is a combination of a full sightseeing tour of Sri Lanka, including all the cultural and historic attractions with visits to the high altitude Horton Plains Cloud Forests and Uda Walawe National Park, the island’s premier elephant reserve. The highlight is a visit to Yala National Park, which is one of the great national parks of Asia.

Upon arrival in Colombo, relax at your chosen hotel or villa and head off next day to the Cultural Triangle which contains all of Sri Lanka’s main historic sights. There include the medieval capital city of Polonnaruwa, the Golden Cave Temples at Dambulla and the fantastic rock citadel of Sigiriya.

Kandy is a very picturesque town nestled in the hills with the Temple Of The Tooth, one of Buddhism’s most important shrines.

The Hill Couintry lies at an altitude of 4000 ft - 6000 ft and was the hub of the British tea planting community of Ceylon, the island’s former name. The Horton Plains National Park has unique Cloud Forests and expanses of grasslands or ‘patanas’ leading to amazing views at World’s End.

Uda Walawe National Park has huge herds of wild elephants that gather around a vast lake. It is sometimes possible to spot 150-200 animals in one gathering. There is also a very interesting ‘foster home’ for abandoned baby elephants that are prepared for release back into the wild.

Yala National Park is one of the best locations in the world to spot leopards in the wild. The sheer beauty of its landscapes and great variety of wildlife makes it un-missable for any wildlife enthusiast.

This is a private tour with your own vehicle and driver-guide.

Tour Map

Tour Itinerary


The flight from LHR to CMB takes approximately 10 hours (Via Sri Lankan Airline)


5 Miles Approx 15 Minutes

Relax On Arrival At Negombo
Arrive at the beach resort of Negombo and relax at your hotel or villa after your long flight. The beach at Negombo is wide and long with many fishing catamarans to be seen out at sea. There are some lovely sunset boat rides that are easily arranged locally on the Negombo Lagoon. The marshes and mangroves on the fringes contain a wealth of wildlife, including ferocious crocodiles!


First Class Hotels :
Jetwing Beach , Negombo

Special Choice :
Villa Hundira , Negombo



94 Miles Approx 4 Hours

Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage
Pinnawela is Sri Lanka’s most visited attraction, and provides a very relaxed place to spend a few hours watching elephants. Set in a pretty riverside location, this is home to about 70 Elephants- the largest group of orphaned Elephants in the world! Most have been found injured or abandoned in the wild. Baby calves, some only a few weeks old are fed by bottle and the whole herd is then bathed in the adjoining river. A tour highlight for many visitors to Sri Lanka.

The Golden Cave Temple At Dambulla
The 5 Cave Temples Of Dambulla are a series of rock temples that have been hewn from a gigantic boulder that contain a very beautiful collection of sculptures, paintings and frescoes from various periods of the island’s history.

Cave No 2 – The Temple Of The Great Kings is the biggest and most spectacular cave temple with over 150 statues and 1500 paintings! The ceilings and walls are covered by the finest murals to be seen in Sri Lanka.


First Class Hotels :
Habarana Village By Cinnamon

Special Choice :
Sigiriya Village , Dambulla



The Ancient City Of Polonnaruwa
The Medieval capital of Polonnaruwa has the feeling of a city that was once ‘lost in the jungle’ – which indeed it was, until it was ‘rediscovered’ by colonial administrators in the 19th Century. Ruins of royal palaces, stupas and monasteries are scattered over several square kilometers around a vast lake known as the Sea Of Parakrama.

The Inner Quadrangle area of the ancient city contains the most exquisite historical remains in the whole of Sri Lanka. The highlight of any visit to Polonnaruwa is The Gal Vihare (Temple Of The Rock) consisting of 4 rock cut Buddhas that are among the masterpieces of Buddhist Art, and one of the world’s great artistic treasures.

Day 5 – KANDY

44 Miles Approx 2.5 Hours

The Magnificent Sigiriya Rock Fortress
The amazing rock fortress of Sigiriya is often listed as 8th Wonder Of The Ancient World and is easily the most impressive historic sight in Sri Lanka. You enter through The Royal Pleasure Gardens with a series of ponds and landscaped terraces until the ascent of the rock fortress begins through a series of dramatic staircases.

Hidden half-way is a cave that reveals the Sigiriya Frescoes. This is Sri Lanka’s premier artistic treasure and is a must for all visitors. If you have a head for heights, you can reach the top via the gigantic Lions Paws, which are the remnants of a huge stone lion that used to guard the entrance. There are stunning views of the forested plains below from the top.

Kandyan Dance Performance
Spend the evening in Kandy watching a colourful Kandyan Dance and Cultural Performance, to the sound of rhythmic temple drums.


First Class Hotels :
Cinnamon Citadel , Kandy

Special Choice :
Hotel Thilanka , Kandy

Day 6 - KANDY

Peradeniya Gardens And Its Beautiful Orchid Houses
The gardens at Peradeniya were one of the jewels of colonial era Ceylon. Initially developed to try out introduced tropical crops like rubber in the island, it soon expanded to become one of the great tropical collections of the world.

During WW2, the Supreme Headquarters of Lord Mountbatten Of Burma were hidden inside the gardens. The Orchid House at Peradeniya contains 300 varieties of orchids that are wonderfully displayed.

Temple Of The Buddha’s Tooth
Delightfully located in a valley surrounded by hills, Kandy was the last capital of the ancient kings. The UNESCO protected Old Town area is a lovely place for an afternoon walk along a maze of streets leading to the Temple Of The Buddha’s Tooth and the Kandy Lake, magnificently framed against forest clad hills in the background.

Visit The Temple Of The Buddha’s Tooth in the evening, for the ‘’pooja ceremony’’ that starts around 6:30 pm. At this time crowds gather to offer flowers and prayers to the sacred relic in the inner sanctum and the temple drummers are in full swing – a magical experience.


A Train Journey Of Approx 6 Hours

By Train Through The Hill Country
The Highland Queen leaves Kandy Railway Station for a spectacular journey through the Hill Country. There are lovely views of waterfalls and tea estates among the glorious scenery of the Great Western mountain range.

We include the full-length railway journey through pine and cloud forests near Horton Plains as well as the mind-boggling views of the Eastern Hill Country at Haputale. Clients are booked on the super luxury Expo or Rajadhani Carriage or the Observation Car when available.

The Magnificent Views At Ella And Haputale
The most beautiful views in the entire island can be seen from the so called Ella and Haputale Gap – spectacular breaks in the mountains with views all the way down to the coast from the edge of the southern escarpment.


Luxury Hotels :
98 Acres , Ella

Special Choice :
Waterfalls Homestay , Ella



Horton Plains Cloud Forests And World’s End
A strange windswept plateau at 6500ft with moss covered forests of rhododendron and sweeping grasslands crossed by crystal-clear streams. A path leads to World’s End - a sheer precipice of some 3000ft! and the enchanting Baker’s Falls.

Diyaluma Falls
Easily seen on the roadside on the way to the southern plains is Sri Lanka’s second highest waterfall at 562 ft.


First Class Hotels :
Grand Udawalawe Safari Resort , Udawalawe

Special Choice :
Elephant Safari Hotel , Udawalawe

Day 9 - YALA

The Elephant Herds At Uda Walawe National Park
The Uda Walawe National Park has some 500 elephants that often gather in large herds to eat ‘Mana’ grass by the edge of the large lake. Elephant watching is also helped by the fact that much of the park consists of semi-open glades and abandoned teak plantations. The scenery is very picturesque as it is framed against the backdrop of the mist laden Hill Country.

This is also a great park for birds, especially raptors such as the Crested Serpent Eagle and the Grey Headed Fishing Eagle.

The Transit Camp For Baby Elephants
The Uda Walawe Transit Centre specialises in the release of orphaned baby elephants back to the wild. Some 13 baby elephants are presently handled by this centre. You can see the highly absorbing sight of bottle-feeding of the young elephants at 12 O clock feeding time.


Special Choice :
Hibiscus Garden , Yala

Eco :
Big Game Safari Camp , Yala

Day 10 - YALA

Encounters With Leopards And Wild Elephants At Yala
The jewel among Sri Lanka’s wildlife reserves and one of Asia’s premier sanctuaries is justifiably famous for its population of Leopards that can easily be observed hunting and lazing around during daylight hours. The island’s big cat is attracted by the presence of large herds of Spotted Deer, Sambar (Elk) and Wild Boar that comprise its staple diet.

Apart from the wildlife, the stunning landscapes at Yala consist of strange shaped rock outcrops that are the ideal habitat of the aggressive Sloth Bear and a coastline dotted with beautiful lagoons harbouring migratory flamingoes and ferocious Marsh Crocodiles.

Around 100 Elephants are also found in and around the park. Today there are said to be 18 to 20 ‘tuskers’ in the reserve, including some huge ‘cross-tuskers’.


A Train Journey Of Approx 3 - 4 Hours

The South Coast Road And The Stilt Fishermen Of Koggala
A lovely coast road passes through a succession of picture-postcard beaches and idyllic bays such as Weligama, widely acknowledged as one of the most beautiful in the world. The island’s unique Stilt Fishermen can be seen in this area during the late afternoons.

The Old World Town Of Galle
Galle has a charming old Dutch Fort (1640) which is the best preserved in Asia. Huge ramparts enclose an Old Town of great historical and architectural value. The labyrinth of streets and alleyways contain about 200 old colonial buildings that are a UNESCO World Heritage Site of prime importance.

Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery
See turtle hatchlings prepared for release back in to the sea. If you are lucky you may be allowed to release some yourself.

Sri Lanka’s Beach Resorts
A beach stay on Sri Lanka’s famous palm fringed coastline combined in addition to this tour will make for an excellent 2 week holiday on the island.


Depart Sri Lanka – Daytime flights arrive back in UK the same day.

More Information:


First Class - Room and Breakfast (Breakfast)
Special Choice – Half Board (Breakfast + Dinner)
Based On 2 Persons Sharing Room
*Price Excludes Beach Stay

Why Is This Tour At The Top End Of My Budget?
Sri Lanka’s Wildife Department charges very high entry fees for foreign nationals at all National Parks in Sri Lanka. Apart from this, we need to factor in Jeep Hire and Tracker Fees too.

What Is The Best Time To See Leopards At Yala?
Leopards are seen throughout the year, with slightly more sightings in the dry months of August and September. Afternoon Safaris are best for Leopards.

Is Yala Open Year Round?
The Wildlife Department has again introduced the closure of Yala National Park during September of each year in order to upgrade park facilities and to give the wild animals some respite from the large amount of vehicles entering the reserve. Bundala National Park can be substituted as an alternative during this period.

Can I Add Extra Safaris At Yala Or Uda Walawe?
Yes. If you have been unlucky with animal spottings or want to spend more safari time at Yala or Uda Walawe, extra Jeep Safaris are easily arranged on demand.

Is It Possible To Include Whale Watching Within This Tour?
Yes but you need to spend an extra night in and around Mirissa in the Deep South. You can either add this to your tour or arrange whale watching from your beach hotel if you stay within easy reach of Mirissa. You need to get to the Mirissa Harbour by 6 am. Whale Watching is only possible between November and April.

Is It Easy To Stay On The Deep South Beaches After This Tour?
Yes, this tour is ideal for a beach stay in and around Galle.

Terms and Conditions

• Private tour of Sri Lanka in an air-conditioned vehicle with English speaking driver/guide.
• All entry fees for places of interest as described in itinerary including jeep hire at national parks.
• Train Tickets.
• Meal plan as stated.

• Flight and accommodation supplements may apply at peak periods.
• Beach stay at end of tour if required will be charged separately with options given.

• Children under 6 years of age sharing parents bed are given the land tour FREE OF CHARGE!!
• Special rates available for 2 adults and 1 child sharing triple room.
• Discounts available for families and larger groups.

• You are welcome to suggest changes or alterations such as a more relaxed tour with fewer activities, additional nights at places that may interest you, and adventure activities like white-water rafting.
• Tell us about any special interests and we will incorporate them in to your tour schedule.
If you want to widen your choice of tour hotel options, go to our View All Hotels index and tell us the mix of hotel you wish to stay at? If you have chosen your own hotels, we will include these along with your quote request.

All distances are point to point and do not include stops for sightseeing en-route. Actual travelling times may vary according to traffic, local weather and other factors.

There are a large number of beach hotels featured on our website. You are welcome to browse the Beach Hotels index and ask for your own choice of beach hotel. Alternatively we will feature a standard set of 6 beach hotel options that we can personally recommend.

You are welcome to specify the actual number of beach nights you require.

Unless specified, we usually feature the clockwise version of the tour for Winter Season (October-May) enquiries, and an anti-clockwise version of the tour for Summer Season (June – September) enquiries as the occurance of fine weather, sea bathing, snorkelling and watersports depends very much on the coast that is ‘in season’ at the time of your travel.

Need Assistance?

We can prepare custom tours to fit your budget. Contact us to discuss your travel requirements, and we can advise you on how best we can assist you.

Need Assistance?

We can prepare custom tours to fit your budget. Contact us to discuss your travel requirements, and we can advise you on how best we can assist you.

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