12 Day Northern Highlights

11 Nights / 12 Days

Starting from $1,270 Per Person

*** This tour can be booked as is or alternatively used as a starting point for creating your own perfect tailor-made holiday to Sri Lanka. ***

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Sri Lanka, a multinational and a multicultural country offers it’s travellers a plethora of cultural sites scattered around the country. The northern region, once a war-torn area, is now gradually emerging and rebuilding its way to the glorious days it once enjoyed. Nevertheless, its unique character and culture is retaining through all the ups and down, captivating the on-looker of the country’s proud history.

12 Day Northern Highlights takes you on a journey to explore diverse cultures, traditions and witness how co-existence of variety adds colour to this beautiful island. Your journey unfolds through the remnants of the ancient kingdom of Anuradhapura, seeing lively Hindu Kovils with pilgrims in Jaffna, a cosy beach stay in Trincomalee, climbing Lions Rock in Sigiriya and winding up the holiday in the chic capital of Colombo. Come discover the beauties of the island.

SoulCare: Ditch the car and Cycle through the Sites  

Itinerary

DAY 1 Airport | Horathapola

Horathapola welcome

‘Ayubowan!’ Welcome to Sri Lanka

On arrival head off to Horathapola Estate which is approximately 1 ½ hours’ drive from the airport. Tranquil environment of the estate will help you unwind after the long flight.

Take a dip in the pool and enjoy a cup of tea.

DAY 2 Horathapola | Anuradhapura

Villager walking a cow

A morning walk along the footpaths of the village. Meet villagers busily going for their daily work. Take a stop at the coir factory, virgin coconut factory, village temple and if it’s a Saturday visit the local ’pola’ or market where fresh and organic vegetables and fruits are sold. Experience a traditional cooking lesson, ingredients could be bought at the market.

Hop on for a 3 ½ hrs ride to the ancient city of Anuradhapura. It is one of the ancient capitals of the country and the well-preserved ruins resembles the vastness of the kingdom to this day.

DAY 3 Anuradhapura | Mihintale

Ruins of Anuradhapura

Relish on an early breakfast and set off on a half day cycling tour exploring the ruins of Anuradhapura. Witness the colossal stupas, indigenous irrigation works, palaces and temples depicting the great architectural skills of our artisans.

Make an optional stop at Mihintale, the site which marks the introduction of Buddhism to Sri Lanka.

DAY 4 Anuradhapura | Jaffna

Museums and temples

Today a change in transport will add some adventure to your holiday.

Get on board for a 3 ½ hrs train ride from Anuradhapura to the Jaffna, the capital city of the Northern Province.

The city of Jaffna, once isolated due to conflicts is now a blooming city with many development projects and sooner will become a tourist hotspot.

Once you get there, explore the vibrant city which includes beautiful kovils, temples, churches, museum and the famous Jaffna Fort retaining its unique heritage.

DAY 5 Jaffna

Nallur temple

Early morning visit Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil to witness the daily Pooja ceremony according to Hindu rituals. Learn more about the interesting Hindu deities, history, culture and many more during your visit to the kovil.

Enjoy a delicious Rio Ice cream, one of the most famous ice cream parlours in the country.

Later in the day explore Keerimalai Naguleswaram Kovil, Keerimalai pond, Kadurugoda Raja Maha Viharaya, and relax at the Casuarina Beach getting a glimpse of the beautiful sunset.

DAY 6 Jaffna |Trincomalee

Fishing net on the beach

After a delicious breakfast, depart to Trincomalee for your perfect beach holiday on the East coast.

Optional: En-route visit Kanniya Hot Water Springs.

Evening is at leisure.

DAY 7 Trincomalee

Paddling board

During your stay in Trincomalee, there are many sightseeing opportunities or you can also spend the days leisurely at the beach.

Few place you could visit are the Koneswaram Temple, Fort Fedrick and Pigeon Island Marine National Park, which is ideal for snorkelling and diving to observe striking aquatic fauna and flora.

DAY 8 Trincomalee

Trinco snorkeling

During your stay in Trincomalee, there are many sightseeing opportunities or you can also spend the days leisurely at the beach.

Few place you could visit are the Koneswaram Temple, Fort Fedrick and Pigeon Island Marine National Park, which is ideal for snorkelling and diving to observe striking aquatic fauna and flora.

DAY 9 Trincomalee | Sigiriya

Village kids Sri Lanka

Hope you had a rejuvenating beach holiday.

Depart to Cultural Triangle, the hub of fascinating, timeless reflections of ancient ruins.

In Sigiriya, visit a local school, spend some time with the children. They would be happy to hear a story or two from the story books you have brought for them. Enjoy the time making wonderful memories with the kids.

Towards the afternoon, climb the magnificent Lions Rock of Sigiriya and witness the bird’s view of the dry plains below.

DAY 10 Sigiriya | Polonnaruwa | Minneriya

Train Timetable

Cycle around the ancient city of Polonnaruwa, the second medieval capital of Sri Lanka. Some of the highlights that you would visit are: Ruins of the Royal Palace of King Parakramabahu, Vatadage and Gal Vihare, which depicts the talents of the age old architecture and sculpture.

Afternoon enjoy safari at the Minneriya National Park, renowned for sightseeing of large herds of elephants. The best time to visit the park is during June to September and the spectacular Minneriya Elephant gathering occurs during August to September annually.

DAY 11 Sigiriya | Dambulla | Colombo

Colombo Sri Lanka

As you’re almost nearing the end of your holiday in Sri Lanka, leave to the chic metropolitan city of Colombo.

Stop over at the Dambulla Cave Temple to explore the beautiful mural paintings which depicts the life of Lord Buddha.

Once you arrive in Colombo, hop on to a tuk tuk and take a city tour to familiarise yourself with your last stop in Sri Lanka.

DAY 12 Colombo | Airport

Lizard on a branch

It’s time to head home. You will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Nemanika

Travel Designer

Travel Designer Recommendation

Explore diverse cultures, traditions and kingdoms of Anuradhapura, seeing lively Hindu Kovils with pilgrims in Jaffna while adding some soft adventure by climbing Lions Rock in Sigiriya. End the holiday with the perfect beach stay at Trincomalee and cruise the vibrant city streets in Colombo and add more colour to your holiday.

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