Anuradhapura, ancient Sri Lanka’s first capital, was founded during the 4th century BC b...Read more >
This introductory tour combines the Cultural Triangle’s ancient cities with scenic hill country, man-made marvels and abundant wildlife. Finish the tour with a relaxing 2-night stay on a palm-fringed beach.
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Overnight flight from London (regional connections available) to Colombo with Sri Lankan Airlines. (N)Day 2: Chilaw
Land in Sri Lanka’s cosmopolitan capital and transfer to the Anantaya Hotel (or similar) in Chilaw for 1 night. This evening get to know your fellow travellers over a welcome dinner. (D)Day 3: Anuradhapura
Drive to the region of Anuradhapura for a 3-night stay at the Forest Rock Garden Resort (or similar). En route stop at Wilpattu National Park for an afternoon wildlife safari in search of leopards and sloth bears. The park is the oldest and largest wildlife park in Sri Lanka and is characterised by its open grasslands and dense jungle scrub. As well as leopards and sloth bears, you may also be able to spot elephants, mugger crocodiles and an array of endemic birds. (B, D)Day 4: Wilpattu National Park •Anuradhapura
Rise early to explore Wilpattu when the wildlife is at its most active. Return to your resort for breakfast and to rest before taking a further safari in the afternoon. (B, L, D)Day 5: Anuradhapura
Explore Sri Lanka’s first ancient capital, Anuradhapura, which was established around the sacred Sri Maha Bodhi tree, said to be the oldest tree planted by hand in the world. The city was the capital for nearly 1,500 years and has a beautiful array of Buddhist shrines and relics waiting to be explored. Return to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure. (B, D)Day 6: Habarana
Continue your exploration of Sri Lanka’s famed Cultural Triangle by transferring to Habarana for a 2-night stay at the Cinnamon Lodge. This afternoon learn authentic local cooking techniques and dishes with an interactive culinary class. (B)Day 7: Sigiriya • Polonnaruwa
Visit one of Sri Lanka’s most iconic sights this morning – the Unesco Sigiriya rock fortress that dramatically rises 370-metres from the central plains. A climb to the top offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Continue to Polonnaruwa, an impressive archaeological site packed with ancient structures including tombs, temples and stupas. (B)Day 8: Dambulla • Kandy
Morning visit to Dambulla, home to Asia’s most impressive and well-preserved cave temples. Admire the many Buddhist murals and statues, some of which date back as far as the first century BC. Leave the Cultural Triangle towards the beautiful hill station of Kandy and stay 2 nights at the Cinnamon Citadel. Afternoon orientation tour before enjoying a traditional and colourful Kandyan dance performance. Nearby you will find one of Sri Lanka’s holiest sites, the Temple of the Tooth, said to contain a tooth relic of the Buddha. The evening Puja ceremony held here is a fine spectacle where prayers and music fill the air. (B, D)Day 9: Kandy
Kandy is set on the shores of a beautiful man-made lake and the area abounds in rich and varied plant life. After a leisurely breakfast, stroll through the Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens and admire the flora, butterflies, birdlife and most notably, the impressive collection of exotic orchids. Spend the afternoon at your leisure – maybe explore Kandy’s bustling markets or just relax at your hotel. (B, D)Day 10: Nuwara Eliya
This morning drive the scenic route towards the hill station of Nuwara Eliya. En route visit a historic tea planation where you can observe the tea pickers in the fields and learn about the process of tea production. On arrival in Nuwara Eliya, stay 2-nights at The Blackpool. Situated at 2,000 metres above sea level, Nuwara Eliya attracted the British in the 18th century and their legacy is still visible. (B, D)Day 11: Horton Plains
Early morning visit to Horton Plains National Park, situated on Sri Lanka’s highest plateau (this excursion involves a 2.5-hour walk*). Horton Plains is inhabited by large populations of monkeys and sambar deer and offers one of the best vantage points to view the spectacular Central Highlands. The rest of the day is at leisure. (B, D)Day 12: Wadduwa
Drive to Wadduwa. Stay 2 nights at the Blue Water Hotel, a luxury hotel with breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean. (B, D)Day 13: Wadduwa
Day at leisure to relax on the beach. Farewell dinner with the group. (B, D)Day 14: Fly to London
Transfer to Colombo and fly to London with Sri Lankan Airlines. (B)Meal basis:
As per itinerary – B: Breakfast, L: Lunch, D: Dinner, N: No meals.Important information
Morning visit to Dambulla, home to Asia’s most impressive and well-preserved cave temples. Admire the many Buddhist murals and statues, some of which date back as far as the first century BC. Leave the Cultural Triangle towards the beautiful hill station of Kandy and stay 2 nights at the Cinnamon Citadel. Afternoon orientation tour before enjoying a traditional and colourful Kandyan dance performance. Nearby you will find one of Sri Lanka’s holiest sites, the Temple of the Tooth, said to contain a tooth relic of the Buddha. The evening Puja ceremony held here is a fine spectacle where prayers and music fill the air. (B, D)*Accessibility:
Due to high altitude and uneven terrain, the Horton Plains trek requires a good level of fitness. Visits to certain ancient monuments in the cultural triangle require steep climbing, including ascending more than 1,800 steps in one instance.Solo Travellers group tours:
These small group tours have been specially created for solo travellers. Benefits include single occupancy of double / twin rooms as standard and at sensible prices, plus the company of like-minded travellers. View the complete collection here.Tour variations
Due to changes to seasonal schedules and opening times, there are minor itinerary variations for certain departure dates. Please check with your Cox & Kings travel consultant for details.Superior tour:
This tour is based in 4- and 5-star accommodation.Private & tailor-made travel
This itinerary can be taken privately on a date that suits you, for which guideline prices are shown. Alternatively, it can be tailored to your exact requirements. Please call to speak with a Cox & Kings consultant or enquire online.
Tucked away between a sandy beach and a mangrove fringed lagoon, the Anantaya Resort & Spa is located in the charming resort of Chilaw and a mere 20 minute drive from Colombo. It lies in close proximity to some of Sri Lanka's most enduring sights such as Wilpattu National Park and Negombo town. Spacious, luxurious rooms are set against the backdrop of the Indian Ocean whilst sun loungers are dotted beneath the palm trees or by the outdoor pool.
The eco-friendly Forest Rock Garden hotel is set among 20 hectares of lush forest just 10km from the ancient site of Anuradhapura. The hotel is built on concrete pillars that are six metres high in order to minimise the impact on the environment, with all the common areas and rooms connected via walkways built on top of the pillars. Rooms are stylishly decorated and feature large four-poster beds and some have a private plunge pool. The restaurant serves vegetarian food only.
Cinnamon Lodge Habarana is set in a 10 hectare woodland on the fringe of a tranquil, ancient irrigation lake. The architecture of the lodge is based on Ritigala, the pre-Christian-era forest monastery near Habarana. The lodge consists of 150 air-conditioned rooms in 53 separate bungalows, all with modern amenities. 30 of the rooms overlook the lake. Facilities at Lodge Habarana include a swimming pool, tennis court, billiards, and an Ayurveda health centre, and the restaurant provides a selection of continental, eastern and Chinese cuisine.
Overlooking the Mahaweli river on the northern outskirts of the hill country capital of Kandy, Cinnamon Citadel is a 4-star hotel, offering tranquillity away from the city. It is just 30 minutes from one of the most sacred Buddhist places of worship, the Temple of the Tooth, as well as the beautiful Peradeniya Botanical Gardens and Kandy Lake. All of the rooms overlook the river and are elegantly furnished and decorated in themes inspired by Kandy's rich cultural heritage. The main restaurant has views of the Mahaweli and offers international buffets, there is also an à la carte restaurant offering fine dining. The pool and sun terrace are great places to relax and watch the spectacular sunsets. Features: 119 rooms, 2 restaurants, bar, swimming pool, Wi-Fi. Room amenities: Air conditioning, balcony, television, minibar, tea & coffee making facilities.
The Blackpool is a charming property located approximately 3km to the south-west of Nuwara Eliya and surrounded by lush hills and tea estates. Throughout the property you will find antique furniture and original artwork. The atmospheric bar which overlooks the surrounding valley is the finest example of this and also includes a snooker table. All of the 50 tasteful rooms have private balconies for guests to enjoy the views. The restaurant 1881 is a pleasant reminder of the altitude of the hotel and serves a carefully curated menu of both Sri Lankan and European cuisine.
The Blue Water Resort is located on a sublime stretch of the Wadduwa coastline and has 100 rooms with all modern facilities. The hotel offers a spectacular view of the sea and stands amid a cool cluster of coconut palms that line the water. There are four restaurants including all day dining, a fully equipped gymnasium and spa, tennis and squash courts and a large swimming pool.
Flexible Prices & Itineraries
For a quote based on alternative accommodation standards or flight options, or to tailor this itinerary, please call 020 7873 5000 or
Please call 020 7873 5000 for more information or to make a booking.
Prices above are per person in pounds sterling (£), based on two people sharing a twin-room. The prices which were valid at the time of publication, may be subject to change, particularly as a result of variable flight costs. You will be informed of any such changes prior to booking.
*Itinerary: Note that for the 06 Feb 2014* departure date only the itinerary is different to the regular 2014 tour, with a visit to the countryside in Mai Chai and an extra night in Hanoi, and one less night in Hoi An.
Discounts cannot be combined with any other current or subsequent Cox & Kings offer. Discounts apply to new bookings only and cannot be applied retrospectively. Offers are subject to availability.
S: Prices marked with an (S) symbol are designated as ‘Super Offers’. These select tour departures have been highlighted to help you recognise the best value offers currently available on our website.