Cultural Tours

Atoll travel will customise a Sri Lanka tour to take in the highlights, activities and sights you want to see. In conjunction with our highly experienced local tour operator, Connaissance de Ceylan, we will arrange all your transport, accommodation and sightseeing for an exciting, hassle-free holiday.

Highlights

Sri Lanka’s capital, Colombo stretches nine miles along Sri Lanka’s west coast. The metropolis is home to one and half million people of different ethnic groups, religions and cultures. High rise hotels and colonial mansions intersperse with supermarkets and street bazaars, while streets buzz with cars, bikes and tuk-tuks (motor-rickshaws). Experience the restored Galle Face Hotel, epitomising colonial grace and charm in a superb sea-front location.

The major south coast city of Galle is renowned for the 17th century Dutch-Portuguese Fort, with its massive walls and fortifications surrounded on three sides by beautiful blue sea. Within the walls of this UNESCO heritage site, colonial-era houses line the quaint streets, highlighted by churches, mosques and public buildings.

Great kings ruled the lakeside city of Kandy for over 200 years. Today, it’s the historical citadel of the country and Sri Lanka’s second city. The Sacred Tooth of Lord Buddha is venerated here in a magnificent temple. Every year, in July or August, the fabulous Perahera Celebration features a procession of over 100 elephants.  Visit the Temple of the Tooth Relic and witness the traditional daily rituals. Enjoy the cultural performance of Kandyan Dancing.

Marvel at Sri Lanka’s ancient sites. Sigiriya, a massive rock in the scrub jungle, was in ancient times a hermitage for Buddhist monks.  The complex includes cave temples, bathing pools, lovely ponds and Asia’s oldest landscaped gardens. Sigiriya is famous for its frescoes painted in a pocket of the rock.

Polonnaruwa, the mediaeval capital of Sri Lanka, is today a beautiful center of Sri Lanka’s cultural heritage. At Gal Vihara, three gigantic Buddha statues have been chiselled out of a single rock.

The 2000 year old Dambulla Rock Cave Temple displays an outstanding collection of Buddha images. The walls are covered in paintings of Buddha during his different reincarnations.

Sri Lanka’s Highlands are renowned for picturesque tea plantations, colonial hill stations, the Royal Botanic Garden and the unique natural environment of Horton Plains.  Visit the Tea Estates to see the cultivation and manufacture of tea, now a skilled scientific process, producing the world’s most fragrant teas.  Relive the colonial era at Nuwara Eliya, an old hill station – the ‘Little England’ of Sri Lanka with oh-so-English buildings.

In the southeastern corner of the island, Yala National Park is scrubby forest country, reminiscent of the African bush. It’s a wonderful place to see deer, wild buffalo, wild boar, monkeys, crocodiles, peacocks and, if you are lucky, bear and leopard.

A great favourite is the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage, established to care for young , abandoned elephants. Visit at feeding or bathing time.

Tour Packages

Enjoy the cultural and natural attractions, then relax on one of the many tropical beaches, for sun, sand and surf. Explore more with trekking, wildlife and adventure activities, or ask about courses in Sri Lankan cooking.

Whatever your interests, Atoll Travel and our local tour operator can arrange a fabulous Sri Lanka holiday, with all airfares, transfers and and activities taken care of. Let us organise a custom tour package from 7 to 14 days or longer.