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HomeFar East Holidays & ToursMaldivesSri Lanka and the Maldives
16 days

Sri Lanka and the Maldives

Discover Sri Lanka’s culture, nature and wildlife combined with a beach holiday on the Maldives’ white sandy beaches at the award-winning Summer Island resort.

Sri Lanka and the Maldives Sri Lanka and the Maldives
16 days

Sri Lanka and the Maldives

Discover Sri Lanka’s culture, nature and wildlife combined with a beach holiday on the Maldives’ white sandy beaches at the award-winning Summer Island resort.

Choose this tour because…

Kill two birds with one stone and experience Sri Lanka and the Maldives on one and the same holiday. The tour is the perfect blend of culture, nature and wildlife in Sri Lanka and a beach holiday on the Maldives’ white sandy beaches. At the same time, the tour offers a good variety of planned excursions and free days, allowing you to plan the activities and set the pace of your holiday.

The tour kicks off in the seaside resort of Negombo, where you will have time to recover after the long flight before continuing to Sigiriya. In Sigiriya, you climb Sri Lanka’s landmark, the Lion Rock, which affords a phenomenal view of the landscape.

The next stop is the town of Kandy, and on the way, you visit the impressive cave temples in Dambulla and Matale’s lovely spice gardens.

One of the highlights is the train ride from Nanu Oya to Ella, which takes you through the highlands with picturesque tea plantations and waterfalls. From Ella, you continue to Yala National Park, where you will go on an exciting jeep safari with the chance of seeing elephants, leopards and bears.

You round off your Sri Lanka adventure with a night in Negombo, which is close to Colombo airport. From here, you fly on to the Maldives, where you will stay at the award-winning Summer Island resort, where relaxing days on the white sandy beaches, which contrast beautifully with the breathtaking turquoise waters, await you.

What is included in the price?
This package includes the following
  • Flight from the UK to Colombo
  • 9 nights in Sri Lanka at 3-star hotels, including breakfast
  • 1 x lunch (day 3)
  • Travelling in a car or minibus with air conditioning
  • Train ride from Nanu Oya to Ella
  • Local, English-speaking driver/guide on excursions and tours
  • Flight from Colombo to Malé in the Maldives
  • Return speedboat transfer from Malé airport to Summer Island
  • 4 nights in the Maldives at the 4-star prize-winning luxury resort Summer Island in a superior bungalow including full board and a daily bottle of water in the room
  • You have the option to extend your stay, upgrade your room category and upgrade to all inclusive
  • Flight from Malé to Denmark
  • ATOL certificate
  • 24-hour manned emergency telephone throughout the tour
  • Departure guarantee – the tour will take place regardless of the number of participants

Wide-ranging excursion packages are included:

  • The Lion Rock of Sigiriya
  • The Buddhist Cave Temples in Dambulla
  • Visit to the Spice and Herbal Garden in Matale
  • Train ride from Nanu Oya to Ella
  • The Ravana Falls
  • The sacred pilgrimage town of Kataragama
  • Safari in Yala National Park
  • Admission fees to the sights and attractions mentioned
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Gallery
Detailed Itinerary
Day 1: Departure from selected airport

Today, you depart from your chosen airport and fly to beautiful Sri Lanka, a gem of an island in the Indian Ocean with connecting flight(s) on the way.

Day 2: Arrival in Sri Lanka – Negombo

You land at Sri Lanka’s international airport in the capital Colombo, after which you collect your luggage and pass through immigration. Your driver/guide is waiting for you in the arrivals hall, holding up an Asia Tours sign, and you will feel the warm Sri Lankan hospitality immediately.

Together, you drive to Negombo, which is around a 30-minute drive from the airport.

Negombo is a wonderful mix of tourism and local life with its wide golden sandy beaches and exciting fish markets. It is an old fishing village, and fishing is the local community’s main source of income to this day. Early in the morning, the fishermen land the day’s catch, which is sold at the local Llelama fish market, close to the old Dutch fort, among other places.

After checking in at your hotel, you can explore the town or relax after the long flight and become acclimatised to the warmer temperatures.

Day 3: Negombo – Sigiriya

You can choose to enjoy a quiet morning at the hotel or to visit the Llelama fish market before embarking on the next part of the tour.

After breakfast, you will be picked up from the hotel and driven to Sigiriya. You stop for lunch at the half-way point by the Maha Oya River in Pinnawala. There are a couple of restaurants along the river where you can enjoy a delicious meal with the most scenic river view. You may be lucky enough to see the elephants from Pinnawala elephant orphanage making their way down to the river to bathe, as they do twice a day.

After lunch, you head back to the car. Sit back and enjoy all the sights zipping past the window.

On your arrival in Sigiriya, the rest of the day is yours to enjoy the pool or the tranquil surroundings from your balcony.

Day 4: The Lion Rock of Sigiriya

After breakfast, you will visit Sri Lanka’s landmark, the Lion Rock, which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  You will be picked up from the hotel and driven to the famous rock.

From 455 to 473, King Dhatusena ruled over Sri Lanka in the city of Anuradhapura. Dhatusena’s son, Moggallana, stood to inherit the throne from him, but the eldest son, Kashyapa, was displeased by this. Both of Moggallan’s parents were royal, whereas Kashyapa’s mother was just one of King Dhatusen’s mistresses, which was why he could not take succeed his father, even though he was the eldest son.

Kashyapa resorted to walling up his father before assuming full power. This caused his half-brother, Moggallana, to flee to Southern India to avoid suffering the same fate.

The new regent, King Kashyapa, was not well-liked among the people, and he feared an attack by his half-brother Moggallana. He therefore chose to move the capital from Anuradhapura to Sigiriya due to its strategic location. On the flat top of the Sigiriya rock, he built his sumptuous royal palace with surrounding ramparts, gardens, large ornamental pools and fountains.

Half way up the rock, he built the entrance to the palace, which depicted a giant lion – hence the name Lion Rock. Today, only the enormous lion paws remain.

King Kashyapa lived here with his harem and servants until the return of his half-brother Moggallana from Southern India with a whole army. King Kashyapa and his army lost the battle to Moggallana, and Kashyapa ended up taking his own life in 495. Moggallana moved the capital back to Anuradhapura, from where he ruled the country, and Sigiriya was converted into a Buddhist monastery.

On the way to the rock, you can see the ruins of the moats, gardens and the impressive irrigation systems.

The rock, which shoots up 200 metres from the ground in the midst of the lush surroundings, may look unclimbable – and for good reason! The climb to the top is hard! No fewer than 1,202 steps await you, and we recommend that you take it slow, with breaks to enjoy the beautiful views that become increasingly breathtaking, the higher up you come.

On the way to the top, you will also discover the beautiful and well-preserved frescoes of women and the remains of a polished rock wall. A little over halfway up, you will encounter the remains of the giant lion that served as an entrance to Kong Kashyapa’s royal palace. If the climb is too strenuous, you can opt to stop here.

If you choose to proceed, we guarantee it will be worth it. At the top, you will find the ruins of the ancient royal palace and stunning views of lakes, verdant mountains and the nearby Pidurangala rock. Take your time and enjoy the surroundings before starting the climb down.

It takes around 2 hours to climb and descend the rock + the time you spend on the top.

Remember good walking shoes and water for the trip.

You are driven back to the hotel and the rest of the day is at your leisure.

Day 5: Sigiriya – Dambulla cave temples – Matale spice and herbal Garden – Kandy

You will be picked up from your hotel and driven to Kandy, with two exciting stops along the way.

The first stop is at the old royal city of Dambulla, which is known for its many cave temples. You visit the five most important ones, which are situated in a 160-metre-high and 600-metre-wide rock.

The caves were established by King Valagamba in the first century BC and became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991. Steep stairs lead up to the caves, but it is absolutely worth the effort. On a clear day, you can see all the way to the Lion Rock of Sigiriya.

In the five caves, there are no fewer than 153 golden Buddha statues, three statues of former Sri Lankan kings and four statues of gods and goddesses, including the two Hindu gods Vishnu and Ganesha. In addition to the many statues, there are also unique murals extending over 2,100 m2.

After this, the tour heads to the small town of Matale, known for its large, beautiful spice gardens. Matale has the perfect climate for cultivating many different spices, with just the right balance between heat and moisture.

On your arrival, a fascinating guided tour among the large trees and plants awaits you. The guide shows you how all the spices we use in everyday life grow in the wild and what they look like before they are made into spices. Use all your senses to guess what the different things are. Among others, you will see cinnamon, turmeric, vanilla, pepper, chilli and ginger. You will also see coffee, cocoa, aloe vera and rubber trees.

Before leaving the garden, you can shop in the garden’s shop, which sells all manner of interesting products for the skin, hair, stomach, aching muscles and much more besides.

After the guided tour, you continue to Sri Lanka’s ancient capital, Kandy, where the rest of the day is your own.

Day 6: Kandy – Nanu Oya – Train ride to Ella

After breakfast, you are picked up from the hotel and driven to the train station in Nanu Oya. From here, you go on a scenic train ride through Sri Lanka’s highlands to the town of Ella, beautifully situated in the mountains at the end of Ella Gap gorge.

The train snails its way through the hilly landscape, and through the window you can see waterfalls, tea plantations and local life in the small villages you pass.

You arrive in Ella in the afternoon, where your driver/guide is waiting to take you to the hotel.

The rest of the day is your own to enjoy this scenic area, which takes most people’s breath away.

Day 7: Ella on your own

The day is yours to enjoy Ella at your own pace. You can choose to enjoy the pool and the beautiful view, explore the area on your own or choose one of the free excursions found below.

Day 8: Ella – Ravana Falls – Kataragama – Yala

After breakfast, you say goodbye to Ella. Your driver/guide picks you up from your hotel, and you drive to Yala along winding mountain roads.

On the way, you will visit the 25-metre-high waterfall Ravana and the pilgrimage town of Kataragama, which is one of the most sacred places in Sri Lanka. Every year in July and August, thousands of Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims flock here. What is amazing is that all faiths worship here in the Kataragama temple, something not seen in many parts of the world.

The tour continues to Yala, where you arrive in the late afternoon.

Day 9: Safari in Yala National Park

You will be picked up from your hotel by your guide/driver who drives you to Yala National Park, where you’re going on an exciting safari today.

Yala National Park was designated as a game reserve in 1900 and as a national park in 1938. Today, it is Sri Lanka’s second largest national park, covering an area of 978.8 km2. The park consists of five areas, two of which are open to the public.

It is home to more than 215 different species of bird and 44 different species of mammal. Yala National Park is said to have one of Sri Lanka’s largest elephant populations and the highest concentration of leopards. Although Yala is the place with the highest number of leopards in Sri Lanka, there is no guarantee of seeing them. They often hide in the bushes and are hard to spot. However, you may be lucky enough to see bears, crocodiles, wild boar, buffaloes, monkeys and deer, so have your binoculars and the camera at the ready!

Please note: Certain areas of Yala National Park are sometimes closed in September and October to conserve the natural habitats of the animals. If you are visiting Sri Lanka at this time of the year, please be aware that your safari in Yala may be replaced by a safari in Udawalawe National Park, which is situated west of Yala National Park.

Day 10: Yala – Negombo

Today, your driver/guide will drive you back to the golden sandy beaches of Negombo. Sit back in your seat and enjoy the world passing by outside your window.

When you get to Negombo, you have the rest of the day at your leisure.

Day 11: Negombo – The Maldives – Summer Island

You are picked up from the hotel and driven to the airport, from which you fly to the Maldives, which are located south-west of Sri Lanka. The Maldives are Asia’s smallest country, made up of 1,190 small coral islands, which are divided into a ring of 26 smaller archipelagos called atolls. The islands are surrounded by deep blue sea and turquoise lagoons, protected by beautiful coral reefs.

After a flight which takes around an hour and a half, you arrive at Malé airport, after which you collect your luggage and pass through immigration. Our representative is waiting for you out in the arrivals hall, holding up a sign with your name on it. He or she will accompany you to the speedboat outside the airport waiting to sail you across the Indian Ocean. 45 minutes later, you arrive at Summer Island, where the resort staff are waiting to welcome you.

The rest of the day is your own, so get your swimwear on and find your favourite spot on the white sandy beach.

Days 12-14: Luxury holiday on Summer Island

Early in morning, you can witness the burning sun rising on the horizon. Perhaps you will encounter the island’s herons which can be seen standing at the water’s edge every morning, looking out across the turquoise lagoons.

After a delicious breakfast in the restaurant, you can throw yourself down on a sun lounger and enjoy the white sandy beaches with crystal-clear waters and coconut palms swaying in the gentle breeze. You will almost have to pinch yourself on the arm to be sure that you are not in dreamland.

The Maldives not only look like a postcard on land, but under the water, too. Put on your mask, snorkel and flippers and head off on adventure among the multitude of colourful fish straight from the beach. Perhaps you will meet Nemo and the island’s small reef sharks, which are completely harmless.

The hotel also offers a number of water sports and excursion options.

And be sure to treat yourself to a lovely, relaxing treatment at the resort’s day spa.

In the evening, take a walk along the beach to the sight of the beautiful sunset before exploring the array of delicious dishes at the restaurant.

Round off the evening with a refreshing drink in the cocktail lounge or on your balcony.

Day 15: Homeward bound

Today, you unfortunately have to say goodbye to this beautiful paradise. The evening before, the reception will inform you about departure times from Summer Island.

You will sail back to Malé airport, from which you will fly to Europe with connecting flight(s) on the way.

Day 16: Arrival in the UK

You land in the UK after an eventful tour.

Single room supplement £773
Discounts for large groups
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