Hills and thrills
Sri Lanka is one of those countries where it’s hard to sit still. There is far too much to see and experience on this small but diverse island. But time is a precious commodity, so we’ve created an action-packed 11 day itinerary that ticks most of Sri Lanka’s key boxes.
You’ll start your Sri Lankan journey where the harmony between man and nature is at its most spectacular, adjusting to a gentler pace of life among the timeless tea plantations of Hill Country. Then, go on a thrilling safari with an expert wildlife guide before cooling off on a pristine beach just outside Galle, before finally enjoying the hum and throb of Colombo.
*Every Yonder itinerary is uniquely created to suit our individual clients. Destinations, hotels, lengths of stay and even modes of transport are all decided by you, with the help of our local knowledge and expert guidance.
We have also thrown in a twist with the accommodation (although it is of course entirely changeable as all itineraries are designed around the individual wishes of our clients). The first two hotels are both tented camps meaning they provide a greater sense of immersion and proximity to the jaw-dropping nature on the doorstep. The second two hotels are certainly more traditional in their construction but are nevertheless full of character.
Your driver guide will be waiting for you in the arrivals hall to ensure you make a swift escape. You’ll journey through the Sri Lankan hinterland towards Madukele Tea and Eco Lodge. The lodge lies above 1,000m amongst verdant carpets of tea bushes stretching as far as the eye can see. Every so often, tea pluckers are visible in their bright saris working away to deliver the tips to the weighing stations before the sacks are transported to the tea factory. You’ll see the complete cycle during a visit to the local working tea factory and realise that Blighty’s favourite drink is produced by seriously old fashioned processes. Wandering on one of the trails between the tea bushes is a fabulous experience. Pay attention and you’ll see a staggering array of birds and other wildlife.
An early departure is needed to for the drive to Yala national park. The luscious green highlands will be left behind as you wind through the centre of the country towards the coast and the arid scrub lands. On arrival at Yala, you’ll head for the park’s perimeter where you’ll transfer into a safari vehicle for the final couple of kilometers to the Kulu Safari camp. You’ll have time to go out on three game drives; two at dawn and one at dusk as these are the prime times to witness leopards, sloth bears, jackals and much else besides. Lunches and dinner are an al fresco affair served back at the safari camp. And look out for the plethora of wildlife that lives around the camp, from wild boar, to crocs, to the occasional elephant.
After your final morning game drive, you’ll once again team up with your driver guide to journey along the southern coast of Sri Lanka. This time you’ll know that the end of road will be the beach and the chance to kick back and relax amid the luxurious surroundings of the Frangipani Tree. Beautiful suites and simply amazing fusion food – crab curries, lamb tagines. Work it off in the pool or on the tennis courts. Take a 15-minute tuk tuk ride to Galle and explore the stunning Dutch colonial fort and the famous Test cricket ground.
As your holiday in Sri Lanka draws to a close, it’s time to experience the big smoke. You’ll head for Colombo on the swish new highway and pull up at The Galle Face Hotel, aka ‘The finest hotel east of Suez’ and this will be your base from which to venture into Sri Lanka’s buzzing and rapidly evolving capital. Maybe a final massage, some shopping at the beautifully restored colonial era buildings of Independence Arcade, a visit to the national museum or some truly cosmopolitan food on Park Street Mews will cap your memorable trip. Or perhaps you will just relax in your magnificent hotel and discover how it earned its lavish reputation. The following morning after breakfast, you’ll check out of the Galle Face make the shortish journey through Colombo towards the airport for the direct lunchtime flight back to the UK.
What you get for your money
This itinerary would typically cost from £1,700 per person staying in the specified hotels and having the services of a private chauffeur guide, excluding international flights. The costs can vary based on season, room type and board basis. All our holidays are tailor-made and can be created around your budget.