Sri Lanka Itineraries
The beautiful island of Sri Lanka has a diverse landscape and a lot of variety in terms of activities and attractions. Explore Sri Lanka like never before by looking into suitable Sri Lanka itineraries, all of which are created with the intention of allowing visitors to discover all the popular tourist attractions in the country within a particular time frame. Before planning your holiday, carefully study the available Sri Lanka itineraries, know your options and then decide what you want. Every itinerary will consist of a collection of exciting experiences and activities. The time frame, destinations and activities mentioned in the suggested Sri Lanka itineraries are flexible and can be tailor made based on your requirements.
Sri Lanka Itinerary Ideas
- Theme based itinerary – Sri Lanka itineraries based on a particular interest, activity or destination in mind.
- Time based itinerary – Depending on the duration of your trip, we would try to cover maximum possible destinations around the country.
Theme Based Itineraries
When touring Sri Lanka, you may want to focus only on either the east or west coast destinations, or may only want to explore places like Jaffna or the hill country (Kandy, NuwaraEliya, etc).Some tourists are looking to explore the wildlife or want to cover all the popular beach destinations. On the other hand, if you are visiting during a holiday season such as Christmas, your itinerary can be focused on the best places to visit in Sri Lanka during Christmas. Below are some examples of theme based Sri Lanka itineraries.
The west coast has been a popular beach destination for decades when preparing Sri Lanka itineraries; particularly the south west coast. A tour of Sri Lanka’s west coast would include Chilaw, Negombo, Colombo, Hikkaduwa and Galle.
- Visit the turtle hatchery in Galle
- Whale watching in Mirissa
- Explore the exotic beaches in Hikkaduwa and Galle
The east coast of Sri Lanka includes destinations such as Passikuda, Arugam Bay, Batticaloa and Trincomalee.
- Enjoy a swim in the calm and shallow waters of Passikuda
- Arugam Bay is the perfect destination for surf lovers
- Explore the Dutch ruins in Trincomalee
When covering Sri Lanka itineraries focused on beaches, you can tour the west, south west and the east coast of the island. The west and south west coast is more of golden sands, deep waters and waves that are ideal for surfing. On the east coast, the unexplored beaches boast of white sands and long stretch of shallow and peaceful waters that are ideal for a swim.
- Exciting water sports such as jet skiing and banana boat rides available in most of the beach destinations on the south western coast
- Kalpitiya is a west coast beach destination popular for dolphin watching and kite surfing
- Surf lovers have to enjoy a day or two at Arugam Bay (east coast)
Some of the best wildlife can be seen in many of Sri Lanka’s national parks such as Yala National Park and Wilpattu National Park. After your wildlife experience, the best way to relax and unwind is by spending a few days on some of the most pristine beaches in Sri Lanka.
- Enjoy an exciting camping experience at the Yala National Park
- Take part in game drives and a jeep safari during your wildlife experience
- Sun bathe on beach shores and show off the lovely sun tan on your body
Here you will experience completely different scenery from beaches and wildlife. Lushes tea estates, cascading waterfalls, green mountain ranges and deep valleys are what you will see in Sri Lanka’s hill country – Kandy, NuwaraEliya, Ella, etc. In addition to hill country, you can tour other northern destinations such as Sigiriya, Dambulla, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa where you can explore the history of Sri Lanka.
- Enjoy adventurous activities such as mountain/rock climbing, trekking and tea plucking
- Indulge in breathtaking views from the top of Sigiriya Rock and from the Ella Gap
- Explore history, culture and tradition at the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy
- Walk through the historical ruins in Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa
Jaffna is an unexplored destination that tourists are now keen on discovering. History, amazing beaches, Tamil places of worship and much more is included in Sri Lanka itineraries of Jaffna.
- Dip in the salty, yet long shallow stretches of Jaffna sea water
- Walk through the ruins of a 30 year civil war
- Visit Nallur Kovil and learn about Tamil culture
Christmas holidays are always exciting in Sri Lanka because celebrations are taking place at every popular tourist destination in the country. Hotels and resorts always cater to Christmas cuisines with gala buffets on Christmas Eve and interesting brunch or lunch spreads on the day of Christmas.
- Indulge in delicious meals at popular restaurants and hotels
- Enjoy amazing discounts at clothing and electronic stores during Christmas season
- Be a part of fun-filled Christmas parties including music, dancing and drinks
See Also : Kandy Itinerary
Time Based Itineraries
When planning a holiday, guests always have a time frame in mind. For example, you may want a suitable Sri Lanka itinerary for one week or ten days or two weeks only. In this case, the itinerary will have to be restricted based on the available time period.
Ten day Sri Lanka itineraries would be limited versions of the three weeks one. In this case you can prioritize the activities in Sri Lanka based on your preferences and prepare an itinerary accordingly.
- Climb the Adam’s Peak and have an up-close-and-personal view of the sunrise
- Deep sea fishing in the friendly waters of Negombo
- An awe-inspiring experience of the Kandy Perahera (in July/August)
A three week stay in Sri Lanka is sufficient to cover many of the detailed tourist attractions in the country. Sometimes tourists prefer to tour the country for two weeks and then spend the last week at an Ayurvedic resort to relax and rejuvenate one’s mind, body and soul. Typically, Sri Lanka itineraries for three weeks would include tourist hotspots in the west, south, east and central parts of the island.
- A unique tea-plucking experience in Nuwara Eliya
- A relaxing spa massage on the shores of the south western coastline
- Exciting water sports in Bentota
- Whale/Dolphin watching in Kalpitiya
- White water rafting in Kitulgala
- Splendid views from the Ella Gap
- Nature trails on Horton Plains
- Camping amidst wildlife in Yala
Frequently Asked Questions on Sri Lanka Itineraries (FAQs)
First timers to Sri Lanka would want to see whatever Sri Lanka tourism has to offer on its plate and the variety on offer is wide. So a perfect first time itinerary would involve touching as many varieties as possible while a repeated visit would probably be more focused on what exactly the tourist wants to explore in detail. Examples of this could include a wildlife itinerary or an itinerary based on exploring history and culture, beaches or the hill country.
Visas are required for travelling to Sri Lanka. Short stay visas can be obtained online before your arrival from Electronic Travel Authority (ETA). The duration of a tourist visa is of 30 days. On arrival visas are available at the airport but it is less hassle and cheaper to obtain the online visa before you arrive.
Sri Lanka is a tropical country, hence has holiday friendly weather throughout the year. Rainfalls occur on random days but usually last only for an hour or two, maximum. A couple of monsoons are seen in the year but these do not affect the whole country at once. So even if one region has too much rain during your visit, there are plenty of other regions you can explore.
Find out more about Best time to visit Sri Lanka
- Bus: Publicly owned. Cheapest and most common mode of transport.
- Three Wheeler (Auto, Tuk Tuk): Privately owned. Slightly expensive, yet affordable and preferred by many. Runs on a meter.
- Train: Publicly owned. Fastest and very reasonable mode of road transport.
- Car/Van/Jeep: Privately owned. Needs to be rented/hired/reserved. Some run on meter and some have a pre-decided fare.
Several money exchange services are available in town centers where you can exchange currency. Banks are also an option for currency exchange.
The most convenient option for a holiday in Sri Lanka is to outsource the planning and organizing to one of the many travel agents available. Not only will they prepare an ideal Sri Lanka itinerary for you, they will take care of everything from airport pickup and drop to transport around the country to accommodation arrangements to entrance tickets at major tourist attractions.
Find out more about Sri Lanka Tour Packages.
How to get help with building the perfect Sri Lanka itinerary?
It is always best to contact a locally based tourist operator who has knowledge and experience in preparing ideal Sri Lanka itineraries for visitors. They will know best on where to take you, how to get there, where to stay and how to make the most of your holiday in Sri Lanka.
Our 3 Step Approach to building the Best Sri Lanka Itinerary
Tell us about your dream holiday to Sri Lanka
Give us some details about what you would like to include in your perfect holiday to Sri Lanka. Our team of friendly consultants will patiently understand your ideas and suggest suitable itineraries accordingly. A single tour operator will be in charge of handling your end to end planning, and this agent will be your single point of contact in case of any questions before, during and after your trip to Sri Lanka.
2. We will then email your Itinerary
The Sri Lanka itinerary chosen by you will be emailed to you with a best plan for places to visit, hotels to stay and much more.
3. Customize & Book
Carefully read and understand the emailed itinerary and request for any number of changes or customization as per your requirements. We will be more than glad to cater to your requests. Requesting for an itinerary from us is a ‘no obligation’ service, which means you are not compelled to book with us after you have received the itinerary.
If you do decide to book with us, then simply drop us an email and we will go ahead with all the necessary planning and reservations from our end. Our client base is spread across the globe, including countries such as Europe, UK, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Africa, India, Singapore, Thailand and many more. To cater to them, our team of consultants is multilingual and can converse with you in English, French, German, Italian, Tamil, Hindi, Japanese, Mandarin and Creole. We also have our own fleet of vehicles, friendly and experienced drivers who also serve as tour guides, and a 24 hour customer service team. We also have direct network with many top notch hotels around the island who offer us the best rates for accommodation.