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Nov 18, 2024
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Dec 02, 2024
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May 05, 2025
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Mar 16, 2026
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Apr 13, 2026
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Apr 27, 2026
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Sep 21, 2026
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Sep 28, 2026
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Oct 05, 2026
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Oct 19, 2026
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Oct 26, 2026
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Nov 02, 2026
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Nov 09, 2026
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Nov 16, 2026
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Nov 30, 2026
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Itinerary

Book With Flexibility

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Tour Itinerary

Encounter a country that radiates warmth - from its glorious sunshine to its spice-laden cuisine and incredibly kind people. This 9-day Premium adventure through Sri Lanka will introduce you to the country's wealth of cultural riches. Explore the ancient ruins of past civilisations, spot rare and beautiful creatures in their natural habitats, relax among swathes of green tea fields at a hilltop retreat and receive a warm welcome from the locals. A shining gem in the Indian ocean, the teardrop isle will bring you nothing but smiles.

Countries Visited

Sri Lanka

Cities Visited

Colombo , Habarana , Kandy , Negombo

  1. Day 1
    Negombo
    Welcome to Sri Lanka! Upon arrival at Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo, you will be met by an Intrepid representative and transferred to your hotel in nearby Negombo. Here you will meet your leader and fellow travellers at a 6 pm welcome meeting. If you arrive early, perhaps take some time to relax on the town’s golden-sand beach under a canopy of blue sky. After your welcome meeting, you’ll get to know your group and leader a little better over a round of complementary cocktails and a welcome dinner of traditional Sri Lankan cuisine – prepare for rich scents, bold spicing and tongue-tingling flavours.
    Meals:   Dinner
  2. Day 2
    Negombo to Kurunegala to Habarana
    This morning travel inland, driving northeast towards Habarana. On the way, stop at the Ridi Vihara shrine, a Buddhist cave temple dating back to the second century BC. There are thought to have been almost 500 monks living in these hillside caves at its peak. Watch locals demonstrate ancient traditions and craft techniques, such as palm leaf writing and wood and stone carving, and explore the caves filled with Buddha statues and floral offerings. Share lunch at a local restaurant before travelling to Habarana, your home for the next three nights. Once settled at your hotel, the rest of the afternoon is yours to enjoy at your leisure.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  3. Day 3
    Habarana
    Early this morning, before the heat is too intense, head to Sigiriya (Lion Rock). One of Sri Lanka's premier sights, this dramatic rocky outcrop rising from the surrounding plains is topped by a ruined palace. Your leader will share stories of the ancient civilisation that once lived here as you climb; it's a steep hike but the far-reaching views from the top are worth it. Return to your hotel for a well-deserved breakfast and relaxing morning.After lunch at a local house, make your way to the village of Muriya Kadawala, where you’ll learn about traditional Sri Lankan pottery techniques and try your hand at the craft yourself. You’ll also sample a local herbal drink accompanied by a piece of halapa, a sweet treat wrapped in kenda leaves. Next, set off to reach the ruins of Ritigala Monastery in the foothills of Ritigala Mountain. Explore the shaded complex – which includes stone baths once filled with medicinal herbs and oils from the surrounding forest – before receiving a blessing from local Buddhist monks.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  4. Day 4
    Habarana
    After breakfast, make your way to Polonnaruwa to continue your explorations of the cultural triangle. Hop on a bicycle to discover well-preserved temples, tombs and stupas in Polonnaruwa’s ancient Quadrangle complex – it’s not hard to imagine what this place looked like in all its former glory. Visit the remains of a seven-story royal palace, the rock temple of Gal Vihara and the statue of 12th century king Parakrama I - at 100 metres tall this is a truly impressive sight. For lunch you’ll visit a local grandmother’s house, who will show you how to make dhal curry and pol sambol from scratch – you'll even shred coconut yourself using a traditional scraper tool. This afternoon, head to Minneriya National Park to see Sri Lankan elephants in the wild. You're likely to spot plenty of these gentle giants around the watering hole, plus macaques, spot-billed pelicans and more.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  5. Day 5
    Kandy
    Today you’ll travel to Kandy. Along the way, stop off in the city of Matale where you will visit a local spice garden and learn about the spices that have played such an important role in Sri Lanka’s cultural heritage. Upon arrival in Kandy, take a guided tour of the city, stopping to admire highlights such as the Buddhist Sri Dalada Maligawa, otherwise known as the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic (the important shrine houses a relic of Buddha’s tooth, taken from his funeral pyre). Despite being Sri Lanka’s second largest city, Kandy is remarkably laid back. Spend your free evening searching for a taste bud-tingling curry, wandering around the glittering lake or enjoying an optional cultural dance performance.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  6. Day 6
    Kandy
    After leisurely morning, drive to Pilimatalawa, where you will meet a local artisan and learn about how he makes spectacles from crystals which have been found naturally in the ground. The artisan learnt the skill from his great grandfather who served the king in past. Next head to Ambagasthenna village, where hotel and tea plantation owner Mr Thilina will guide you around his neighbourhood. For lunch, feast on a delicious home-cooked meal made by Mr Thilina’s mother. You’ll visit the tea plantation, learn about the cultivation process, and try a cup or two served the Sri Lankan way. He’ll share inside knowledge about local crops, sustainable farming, and ancient landscaping traditions. After such a culture-packed day, there’s only one way to end it: by cracking open a beer and watching the sunset from one of the best viewpoints in Sri Lanka.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  7. Day 7
    Nuwara Eliya
    Depart Kandy and board a morning train bound for Nuwara Eliya. Nestled deep in tea plantation country, Nuwara Eliya sits at an elevation of 1800 metres, giving it some of the coolest temperatures in Sri Lanka. Remnants of the region’s colonial past can be seen in the sculpted gardens and manor homes dotting the landscape today. Once you have arrived take an orientation walk of Nuwara Eliya, wandering the peaceful shores of Gregory Lake. Check in to the Grand Hotel, a gorgeous National Heritage Property and your Feature Stay for the night. Rooms feature classic décor and modern amenities, but the hotel’s real charm is its sustainable approach – the owners have eliminated single-use plastic and are striving for a zero-waste future. Here you will enjoy high tea featuring pots of Ceylon black, green or spiced tea, plus finger sandwiches and sweet treats.
    Meals:   Breakfast
  8. Day 8
    Colombo
    Say goodbye to the green hills of Nuwara Eliya and make the journey by private vehicle to Sri Lanka’s coastal capital, Colombo via Gampola. On the way, visit a tea factory and plantations near the town of Labukelle and stop for lunch at a local restaurant.After arriving in Colombo, take an orientation walk with your leader, who’ll show you Sri Lanka’s colonnaded old parliament building, the National Museum and the best spots for fairtrade souvenir shopping. Tonight, share a final farewell dinner with your group at Ceylon Curry Club, a modern restaurant focused on creating dishes that celebrate Sri Lankan spices, such as peanut-crusted tuna with gotu-kola (pennywort) sambol and fragrant vegetable curry.
    Meals:   Breakfast   Dinner
  9. Day 9
    Colombo
    Your trip comes to an end after breakfast this morning. If you’d like to stay on in Colombo, let us know in advance and we can help to arrange additional accommodation (subject to availability).
    Meals:   Breakfast

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Inclusions

  • Complimentary Arrival Transfer
  • Negombo - Welcome Dinner
  • Ridigama - Ridi Viharaya shrine visit and cultural experience
  • Ritigala - Monastery Tour and Blessing
  • Muriya Kadawala Village - Pottery Making Experience
  • Sigiriya - Lion Rock Fortress Visit
  • Minneriya National Park - Entrance Fee
  • Polonnaruwa - Bicycle Tour
  • Polonnaruwa - Cooking demo and lunch
  • Matale – Spice Garden Visit.
  • Kandy - City Tour with the Temple of the Tooth
  • Ambagasthenna - Tea Plantation and Sustainable Farm Tour
  • Ambagasthenna - Village and Temple Tour
  • Ambagasthenna - Sunset Viewing with Drinks
  • Pilimatalawa - Specks Workshop
  • Nuwara Eliya - High Tea
  • Nanu Oya - Scenic Train Ride
  • Nuwara Eliya - Orientation Tour
  • Colombo - Farewell Dinner
  • Colombo - Orientation Tour
  • Labukelle - Tea Plantation and Factory Visit

Meals
8 Breakfast(s) Included
5 Lunch(es) Included
2 Dinner(s) Included

Style: Premium

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Accommodations

Hotels (7 nights), Feature Stay (1 nights)

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Questions & Answers

Question: How many suitcases can I take with me on my trip?

Each person is allowed one "check-in," and one "carry-on." Remember to take all valuables with you as "carry-on", because electronic equipment, cameras, laptops, jewelry, business documents and money are not covered by the airlines' liability, so always carry them aboard with you.

Question: Is Airfare Included in the Price?

Airfare from your point of origin to and from the trip is not included in the land price.

Intrepid Tours Customer Reviews

Overall Rating
4
Accommodations
3.6
Itinerary
4.2
Professional Staff
4.4
Repeat with Operator
4.1
Value for Money
3.7

Ratings based off 212 reviews about Intrepid Tours - currently showing 9 reviews with comments only

Intrepid is awesome. Our guide was superb. Everything went smoothly!

Our tour guide was wonderful. She was knowledgeable, fun, energetic, and made our week run very smoothly. The trip itself was fantastic! We saw a lot and the islands are absolutely beautiful. Great food, great new friends made on the tour, and would absolutely book with Intrepid again.

Intrepid tour is great company. Will use this company again.

The trip was both both educational and exciting. I very much enjoyed the sights and culture.

The itinerary was just as I expected! The guide was very good as were the accomodations

Intrepid did such a great job. I never had to worry about where I was supposed to be and it felt so good not to worry about a thing but just to enjoy myself. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable about culture and history.

Taiwan people very friendly. Accommodation were centrally located and easily accessible. Did extra activities then in brochure which was greatly.

Larus our tour guide did an excellent job and was very attentive to our needs. He is very knowledgeable and has a great sense of humor.

Our guide Tarang chandola was exceptional. Courteous, knowledgeable, organized, polite, professional and went above and beyond taking care of our needs and requests offen anticipating what that might be. He made sure we all had the best possible time and offered suggestions to meet the needs of everyone on the tour. This made the trip even more enjoyable.

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