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15 Top Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka

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Sri Lanka is truly spellbinding and will suit any traveler’s interests with its top tourist attractions. The small island nation is chock-full of adventure activities like surfing and trekking.

There are several highly religious sites for the religious devotee, and unbelievable historical tourist attractions for history buffs in Sri Lanka . However, no one can dispute Sri Lanka’s incredible natural beauty. Whether it be en-route to a perfect surf break, visiting a historical site or on a pilgrimage, lush greenery and exotic animals are never far away.

15. Nine Arch Bridge [SEE MAP]

Nine Arch Bridge

One of Sri Lanka’s most iconic sights is the Nine Arch Bridge in the small mountain town of Ella. This viewpoint offers spectacular panoramas of the surrounding area, which is made up of verdant greenery and tea fields.

Visitors can watch trains roll over the bridge as they make their way along the Demodara Loop. Constructed in the early days of the railway expansion in Sri Lanka, the bridge is particularly impressive because it is made of cement, stone and brick, without the use of any steel.

14. Mihintale [SEE MAP]

Mihintale

Mihintale is a mountain near the town of Anuradhapura. Its summit has much spiritual significance to the Buddhist community. It’s believed that on this mountain top a Buddhist monk named Mahinda met King Devanampiyatissa and together this meeting introduced Buddhism to the country.

Monk Mahinda impressed the King with the peacefulness of the Buddhist doctrine and his contented, serene nature. The King subsequently renounced war, and went on to spread peace throughout the nation. There are several impressive religious and historical structures on and around Mihintale Mountain. Hundreds of pilgrims visit the site each year.

13. Unawatuna [SEE MAP]

Unawatuna

This white sand beach in the small seaside town of Unawatuna is a great place to relax. There are a number of snorkeling and diving operators in town who take advantage of the abundance of coral reefs just off the beach.

Colorful fish and plentiful turtles are the norm in these waters. There are a number of great dining options along the beach, which welcome visitors to use their sun loungers and relax the day away with a drink in hand.

12. Gal Viharaya [SEE MAP]

Gal Viharaya

Visitors can find Gal Viharaya in the ancient city of Polonnaruwa. Gal Viharaya is a famous Buddhist site and is celebrated for its many caves and large sculptures of Buddha which are carved into the rock faces. They are extremely well preserved, even though they were crafted in the 12th century.

To the side of one of the statues, a code of conduct is inscribed. The code, when followed, was meant to purify the Buddhist monks and bring them together under one order. It was created by a very famous king: King Parakramabahu the first. Today, Gal Viharaya is one of Sri Lanka’s most popular sites of pilgrimage.

11. Kataragama Festival [SEE MAP]

Kataragama Festival

One of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, the Kataragama Festival takes place every year in July or August and is dedicated to one of the Hindu gods. It takes place over a two-week period and people from all over the world come to join in.

The festival is jam-packed with parades of elephants and colorfully dressed performers. There are countless traditional dances that take place; with musicians, acrobats, and fire-breathers feeding into the festival’s contagious energy.

10. Udawalawe National Park [SEE MAP]

Udawalawe National Park

There are few places in the world where elephant sightings are so frequent. However, elephants are not the only animals to see within Udawalawe National Park; peacocks, jackals, water buffalo, crocodiles, monkeys and deer also roam the area.

Safaris are most popular in the early morning hours when animals are at their most active. The biodiversity of the park can be attributed to its varied landscape; it is flanked by mountain ranges to the north with wetlands and rivers hugging the grasslands and forests at the base of the mountains.

9. Ravana Falls [SEE MAP]

Ravana Falls

The beautiful Ravana Falls are used for bathing in the hot summer months. In the rainy season, the water flow is exceptionally strong and is an impressive sight. The falls are part of the Ravana Ella Wildlife Sanctuary, and the nearby cave complex is rich in local legend.

Conveniently located on the main road on the way to Ella town, the caves are a common stop off point for visitors during their journey. Many cheeky monkeys live in the surrounding trees and they are often seen on the roadside dining on fruit. However, don’t let them get too close, as sometimes they can get over-friendly with visitors.

8. Dambulla Cave Temple [SEE MAP]

Dambulla Cave Temple

The Dambulla Cave Temple is a sacred Buddhist site. There is no entry fee to get into the temple on full-moon days; however, these days are especially busy because of the religious significance of this lunar phase. Devotees from all over the world make pilgrimage to this place.

There are over 80 caves documented in the area, but the most famous five are outfitted with impressive statues and paintings. Some of the caves date back to 1000 BC, when prehistoric Sri Lankans would have lived within them, so it is unsurprising that they would have created temples inside at that time. If you do plan to visit, please be aware that visitors must cover their shoulders and legs and remove shoes before entering the temple.

7. Mirissa [SEE MAP]

Mirissa

Mirissa is the ultimate Sri Lankan beach getaway. The beautiful long beach is flanked by tall overhanging palm trees and lined with modern restaurants and hotels. The restaurants have western style food at Sri Lankan prices. Just off the beach is Parrot Rock. It has a small staircase leading to the top that offers great views of the ocean and coastline.

Day trips from Mirissa include whale watching, snorkeling and surfing. Weligama, just a few kilometers from Mirissa, is one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka to learn surfing. Come happy hour and into the evening, many the restaurants turn their venues into beach clubs and pump out drinks and tunes.

6. Arugam Bay [SEE MAP]

Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay is revered by surfers. This small town on the east coast of Sri Lanka embodies the quintessential laid-back surf lifestyle. The Main Point surf break is within walking distance from the town center, but is only recommended for advanced or intermediate surfers.

Otherwise, Whiskey Point or Peanut Farm are two great surf beaches for beginner and intermediate surfers; a short tuk-tuk ride will take you there. Often elephants and peacocks can be spotted beside the road, just outside of town. The main strip in Arugam Bay town is lined with restaurants and hotels where you can dine on anything from traditional Sri Lankan curry to full English breakfasts.

5. Temple of the Tooth [SEE MAP]

Temple of the Tooth

The Temple of the Tooth is a highly sacred place. The temple contains one of Buddha’s teeth. Legend has it that the tooth was taken from the Buddha on his deathbed, then smuggled to Sri Lanka from India. It was smuggled in the hair of a princess, after her father’s kingdom had been besieged.

It immediately became an object of great importance and has been celebrated and paraded throughout history. However, many attempts have also been made to steal or destroy the tooth. Twice daily, pujas are held to celebrate the relic and offer visitors and devotees the chance to get a glimpse of the tooth within its casing.

4. Adam's Peak [SEE MAP]

Adam's Peak

At the summit of Adam’s Peak is a footprint cast in stone. It has spiritual significance to a number of different religions, however, there is currently a Buddhist monastery at the summit. To the Buddhists, the footprint is that of Buddha’s; to Christians, the footprint is Adam’s; and to Hindus, the footprint is attributed to Shiva.

The site is a popular place of pilgrimage, especially on full moon nights. The trek to the top of the mountain to see the footprint is via a steep staircase containing over 5000 steps. The trail is lined with many tea stalls and food shops which act as places of rest. Most people begin their hike at 2:30 am to reach the summit in time for sunrise.

3. Galle Fort [SEE MAP]

Galle Fort

It is easy to get lost in the cobblestoned alleyways and streets within Galle Fort. Today the area is full of modern restaurants, hotels, clothing, and souvenir shops. Meanwhile, snake charmers and buskers line the seawall.

However, the fort was not always such a cosmopolitan spot. A basic fort was constructed by the Portuguese when they made their first landing to the island in 1505. When the Dutch eventually seized control of Galle , they made a number of improvements; including the enormous sea wall that still lines the fort. Galle Fort is an excellent example of what the synthesis between European and Asian architecture looks like.

2. Yala National Park [SEE MAP]

Yala National Park

Yala National Park is made up of spellbinding vistas and a true abundance of Sri Lankan wildlife. It has the highest density of leopards in the world, so chances of seeing them are very high.

Although leopards are the main attraction here, they are followed closely by elephants, sloth bears and crocodiles. The park is divided into five blocks; some of which were zoned to hunters until Yala became a national park in 1938. Ensure you make time to visit the very informative visitor center at the entrance of the park for insightful displays about the area.

1. Sigiriya Rock Fort [SEE MAP]

#1 of Tourist Attractions In Sri Lanka

Sigiriya Rock Fort is utterly impressive. The rock walls rise up 200 meters from the ground, only to give way to a flat plateau at their summit. There are steep stairwells to reach the top and many frescos to marvel at on the way up. At the top, you can find the remains of an ancient civilization, including relics of a palace and monastery.

It would have taken true engineering ingenuity to build a structure at this height so many centuries ago. Around the rock fort are many important caves and gardens; impressively, they are some of the first landscaped gardens in the world.

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  • 18 Amazing And Most-Visited Sri Lanka Tourist Places For Your 2024 Trip

23 Mar 2023

Do you want to leave behind all your work deadlines and travel to a distant land far away from all maddening rush? Are you looking to relax lazily on a hammock? Do you want to let go of all anxieties? Well, then a trip to Sri Lanka is all that your ultimate healer. With its pristine beaches, mosaic landscape and picturesque topography, Sri Lanka has so much to offer. So back your virtual bag and let’s run through the best Sri Lanka tourist places .

Before we move forward with this blog post, let us first get an idea of the essentials. Sri Lanka boasts of some of the world’s best beaches, and the interiors of the island nation also have a lot to offer. Here are some of the must-see tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

18 Best Sri Lanka Tourist Places 

While planning your next vacation to this serene country, do check out these amazing Sri Lanka tourist places . Here is a complete list of the best places to visit in Sri Lanka where one can enjoy a great time away from the hustle-bustle. 

  • The Dambulla Cave Temple – The Largest Temple Complex In Sri Lanka
  • Yala National Park – Home To A Host Of Wildlife And Birds
  • Arugam Bay – Turquoise Heaven For Adrenaline-Junkies
  • Sigiriya and Polonnaruwa – Ruggedness Amidst The Greenery
  • Galle – A 16th Century Marvel
  • Jaffna – Peep Into The Past
  • The Commonwealth War Cemetery At Kandy – Remember The Brave Martyrs
  • Temple Of Tooth At Kandy – Treat To The Eyes And Soul
  • Nuwara Eliya – Get Closer To Pristine Nature
  • Trincomalee – An Unmissable Beach Getaway
  • Polonnaruwa Sacred City – Explore The Golden Past Of Sri Lanka
  • Anuradhapura – The Greatest Monastic City Of Ancient World
  • Nine Arch Bridge – Bridge In The Sky
  • Mihintale – The Birth Place Of Buddhism
  • Udawalawe National Park – Must-Visit Place For Wildlife Enthusiasts
  • Ravana Falls – Enjoy The Impressive Sight Of The Magnificent Fall
  • Adam’s Peak – An Important Pilgrim Site
  • Mount Lavinia – Popular Neighborhood

1. The Dambulla Cave Temple – The Largest Temple Complex In Sri Lanka

Dambulla-Cave-Temple_23rd oct

The most popular among the best places to visit in Sri Lanka is the Dambulla cave temple . It tops the Sri Lanka tourist destinations. The largest temple complex in Sri Lanka, its statues and paintings date back to the 12th Century AD. The temple complex has five rooms of different sizes; all rooms have Buddha in a different position looking calm and peaceful. The temple is built on a black rocky mountain which serves as a nice contrast with the white walls of the temple. Don't miss the view from the top. The temple can be easily accessed from both Colombo and Kandy.

Famous For: Historic significance Things To Do: Architectural tour, Sightseeing

Must Read: 31 Reasons Why You Should Never Visit Sri Lanka For A Vacation!

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2. Yala National Park - Home To A Host Of Wildlife And Birds

Yala-National-Park-in-Sri-Lanka_23rd oct

Missing Yala National Park while Sri Lanka sightseeing might bring regret to wildlife lovers. It is home to a host of wildlife and birds you are bound to run into a group of elephants bathing in streams, tossing their trunks wildly or leopards nestling lazily on tree branches. You could opt for the safari drives or a nature trail among the thick green foliage of the forest. Some tourists also camp at Yala and enjoy a barbeque under the stars. With so much to see and do here, Yala is indeed one of the best tourist places in Sri Lanka . Yala is the perfect place to try your hand at wildlife photography.

Getting to Yala National Park is quite simple. All you will have to do is drive down to the Park from Colombo. Another way is by taking a bus to Tissamaharama.

Famous For: Wildlife, Flora & Fauna Things To Do: Wildlife Safari, Trekking Location: Katagamuwa, Yala, Sri Lanka Timings : 6 am to 6 pm

3. Arugam Bay - Turquoise Heaven For Adrenaline-Junkies

A professional sea surfing at Arugam Bay on a Sri Lankan beach

Sri Lanka has a coastline of over 1600 km and is ideally suited for windsurfing, speed boating, and other water sports. Arugam Bay has azure skies and slanting coconut trees. If you are looking to surf in turquoise waters, Arugam Bay must be in your list of must-see tourist places in Sri Lanka . It is on the southeast coast around 320 km from Colombo.

It is the ideal place to sip coconut water, take in the scent of jasmine and allow the southern sun to tan your skin.

Besides Arugam bay, other beaches among best places to visit in Sri Lanka are Unawatuna in the South; and Tangalla again in the south around 195 km south of Colombo.

How to get there- Colombo has an international airport and is strategically located. So if you fly to Colombo, you are pretty much in close proximity to the best beaches.

Famous For: Seashore Destinations Things To Do: Surfing, Snorkeling Flight Charges from India: INR 15,000 for an adult if booked two months in advance Best beaches around Colombo: Benota, Mirissa, Koggala, Trincomalee, Pasikudah, Unawatuna, Tangalla and Arugam Bay Best time to visit: Between November and March Best Hotels to stay: Weligama Bay resort, The Fortress Resort Galle, Palace Mirissa, and Number One Mirissa

Suggested Read: Sri Lanka In August: A Guide To Treat Yourself With The Magic Of Monsoon!

4. Sigiriya and Polonnaruwa - Ruggedness Amidst The Greenery

Sigiriya is one of the popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Sigiriya or the mount of remembrance is a World Heritage Site and one of the most stunning places to see in Sri Lanka. This giant formation of rock rises out of nowhere towering over everything in its vicinity. It is quite a climb to the top but once up there you will get to see a panoramic view of the nearby sights and the Sigiriya fort. The rock fortress is a slice of history perched on a rock and is really worth a visit.

Not much is heard and said about Polonnaruwa, but this ancient city is no less than the Petra of the south. A gem among Sri Lanka tourist attractions, this ancient ruined city stands amidst its erstwhile sturdy columns and architecture. The best way to explore this ancient city is to hire a bike and zoom around the ruins. The site is well maintained and is a telling example of Sri Lankas history and culture. Polonnaruwa can be easily accessed via Sigiriya. You can take a tuk-tuk or a bus from Sigiriya. Or you can take a bus from Dambulla to Polonnaruwa.

Best Hotels to Stay: Jetwing Vil Uyana, Camelia Resort and Spa, Hotel Sigiriya, Camellia Resort and Spa, and Lal Homestay

Suggested Read: Ramayana Tour In Sri Lanka: Exploring The Religious Trail In The Island Nation

5. Galle - A 16th Century Marvel

Galle-Fort_24th oct

Galle is an important city in Sri Lanka and is a one-stop destination wherein you can take in all sights and sounds. One of the best places to visit in Sri Lanka is the Galle Fort. The Galle Fort area has wide cobblestoned roads and a number of eateries and cafes. Try and catch the sunset while you are there. There are a number of trinket shops and galleries that you can visit. It is among the most visited places in Sri Lanka. 

Another picturesque destination for sightseeing in Sri Lanka is the Japanese Peace Pagoda. Quite close to the Unawatuna beach, it is a white dome of serenity.

Best Hotels to Sty: Jetwing Lighthouse, Amangalla, Tamarind Hill, Apa Villa Thalpe, and The Fortress

6. Jaffna - Peep Into The Past

Jaffna fort is one of the key tourist spots in Sri Lanka

Although a bit crowded, the temple Nallur Kovil is a nice pick among the best places to see in Sri Lanka. Another place of interest is the Jaffna Fort. This fort is in the center of the city and is a tourist hub. If youre in Jaffna, you cannot miss the Nagadipa Purana Vihara, the temple can be accessed by boat. One of calmest among Sri Lanka tourist attractions, the temple is surreal and a wonderful place to meditate.

Best Hotels to Stay: PJ Hotels, and Morgans

Suggested Read: 19 Photos That Will Make You Wish You Were In Sri Lanka Right Now!

7. The Commonwealth War Cemetery At Kandy - Remember The Brave Martyrs

The Commonwealth War Cemetery in Sri Lanka

Yes, a weird one in the list of best places to visit in Sri Lanka, the war cemetery is well maintained and the grounds are well kept. Overall it is a very humbling experience. This cemetery is hard to find without a guide, but once you get there, it is worth the effort.

Location: Kandy, Sri Lanka Timings: 7 am to 4 pm

Suggested Read: 30 Best Beaches In Sri Lanka 

8. Temple Of Tooth At Kandy - Treat To The Eyes And Soul

Temple of Tooth in Kandy

The temple of the tooth is again a popular one among tourist places in Sri Lanka. This temple in Kandy is iconic because of the history attached to it. With a quaint setup and interesting artifacts, this temple is worth a visit.

Location: Sri Dalada Veediya, Kandy 20000, Sri Lanka Timings: 5.30 am to 8 pm

9. Nuwara Eliya - Get Closer To Pristine Nature

The lush green hill station of Nuwara Eliya in Sri Lanka

Nuwara Eliya is most famous for its tea gardens and scenery. It is a perfect place to visit for a romantic vacation or for someone who is looking for a relaxing trip. With misty clouds, lush green sloping hills and a train that looks that it has come out of the Harry Potter films, Nuwara Eliya is a hilly paradise and another great addition to Sri Lankas tourist attractions. The popular places to visit in Nuwara Eliya include Victoria Park, Bale Bazaar, Moon Plains, Ramboda Falls and St. Clair’s Falls.

Suggested Read: Sri Lanka Travel Tips: 21 Dos And Don’ts For A Memorable Vacation

10. Trincomalee- An Unmissable Beach Getaway

The beautiful beach at Trincomalee in Sri Lanka

Trincomalee, among many similar Sri Lanka tourist spots, is blessed with a beautiful beach. If you are up for an underwater diving tour, then SLDT (Sri Lanka Diving Tours) will give you the best experience. Besides water sports, there are also many temples and beaches in Trincomalee. There's also a war cemetery which is surrounded by lush gardens, which makes it one of the best places to see in Sri Lanka.

11. Polonnaruwa Sacred City – Explore The Golden Past Of Sri Lanka

Pollonnaruwa

Image Source

This city was once the ancient kingdom of Sri Lanka and walking into this still gives a feeling of the Golden Age. Inside one of the most popular Sri Lanka tourist spots, there are still ruins of palaces, shrines and stupas which makes it one of the top tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. All these landmarks give closure to the historical remains which hold a glorious past. This place has a lot to explore and gives a peek to the golden past of this side of Sri Lanka. It is among the best Sri Lanka tourist places. 

Main Highlights: One shouldn’t miss witnessing the statue of Parakramabahu I who ruled during the golden age. Alongside that one can also see the magnificent view of the Lotus Pond which is made in lotus-shaped petals and built on 4-tiers.

Suggested Read: Sri Lanka In January

12. Anuradhapura – The Greatest Monastic City Of Ancient World

Anuradhapura

This is one of the top Sri Lanka tourist spots which is also claimed to be one of the world heritage sites. The place gained its importance after the arrival of the Bodhi Tree which is also called the “tree of enlightenment”. The place protects the tree and keeps it away from the wild elephants during the reign of King Kirthi Sri Rangasingha.

Best Time To Visit: April and September Location: It is approximately hours from Anuradhapura-Padeniya highway Price: $25 (INR – 1781)

13. Nine Arch Bridge – Bridge In The Sky

bridge in sri lanka

Nine Arch Bridge is also called the Bridge in the sky and is among the iconic Sri Lanka tourism places . It is in the small mountain town of Ella and offers visitors with splendid view of the surrounding area which comprises of lush greenery and tea fields. What makes the bridge unique is that it is made up of stone, brick and cement. There is no use of any steel. It is one of the best places to visit in Sri Lanka for a memorable holiday. 

Best Time To Visit: Sunrise

Suggested Read: Ekansh’s Anniversary Trip To Sri Lanka In April Was A Bouquet Of Beautiful Memories

14. Mihintale – The Birth Place Of Buddhism

Mihintale, monastic city of Buddhism in Sri Lanka

Mihintale is among the top Sri Lanka tourist attractions . It is a birth place of Buddhism attracting hundreds of pilgrims to this site every year. It is a mountain located near the town of Anuradhapura where you can visit many religious and historical structures. 

Suggested Read : Keep This Ultimate Sri Lanka Honeymoon Guide Handy For Your Tropical Vacation

15. Udawalawe National Park – Must-Visit Place For Wildlife Enthusiasts

Udawalawe National Park Cover

Udawalawe National Park is a must-visit place for wildlife lovers. It is one of those few places where elephant sightings are quite frequent. Not only elephant, you get a chance to get a glimpse of many animals including peacocks, water buffalo, crocodiles, jackals, monkeys and deer. For the best experience of this top attractions in Sri Lanka , take a safari early morning when the animals are most active. 

Location : Udawalawa, Sri Lanka Timings: 6.00 AM to 6.00 PM

Suggested Read: 45 Best Places To Visit In Colombo

16. Ravana Falls – Enjoy The Impressive Sight Of The Magnificent Fall

A shot of the Ravana Falls in Ella region in Sri Lanka

The beautiful Ravana falls is one of the famous Sri Lanka attractions . The majestic and magnificent fall is an impressive sight especially during the rainy season. Located on the main road to Ella, it is a common stop for the visitors during their journey. During the hot summer months, the falls are used for bathing. It is among the most stunning waterfalls in Sri Lanka.

Location : Colombo – Galle – Hambantota – Wellawaya Rd, Ella 90900, Sri Lanka Timings: Open 24 hours

Suggested Read:   Top 10 Things To Do In Kandy For Couples That Assure Ultimate Fun In Sri Lanka!

17. Adam’s Peak – An Important Pilgrim Site

sri pada sri lanka

Adam’s Peak is another famous tourist attractions in Sri Lanka . The topmost point of the peak has a footprint cast in stone which has spiritual significance to different religions. Many pilgrimage trek to the top on full moon nights. Most of them also start hiking around 3 AM to reach the summit by sunrise for a splendid view. It is also one of the most popular honeymoon places in Sri Lanka .

Location: Sabaragamuwa, Sri Lanka

18. Mount Lavinia – Popular Neighborhood

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Image Credit: honeplus for Wikimedia

Mount Lavinia is one of the most romantic tourist places in Sri Lanka . It is popular among the tourists for its vibrant nightlife and Golden Mile Beach. On your visit to this place, make sure to stay at the deluxe Mount Lavinia Hotel for an amazing experience. Located centrally, enjoy the gorgeous view of Colombo’s skyline and have the best seafood at Mount Lavinia beach and a lot more. This is one of the Sri Lanka tourism places you must not miss. It is also surrounded by some of the best beaches in Sri Lanka . 

Timings: 7 am to 7 pm

Suggested Read:   Koggala Beach: An Ultimate Guide To Explore This Hidden Paradise In Sri Lanka 

Best Time To Visit Sri Lanka

Best Time To Visit Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka doesn’t experience extremes when it comes to weather conditions. The best time to visit Sri Lanka depends upon the region you’re keen to visit. December to March is the perfect time for visiting most of the country (Highlands, West Coast, and South coast). May to September is ideal for visiting the Eastern Coasts.

Further Read: Beyond Thailand: 10 Alternate Travel Destinations in Asia

If you want to make a trip abroad and benefit from the exchange rate, then book your trip to Sri Lanka. So pamper yourself and indulge your senses in the rich heritage and diverse beauty by visiting these top Sri Lanka tourist places. 

Disclaimer: TravelTriangle claims no credit for images featured on our blog site unless otherwise noted. All visual content is copyrighted to its respectful owners. We try to link back to original sources whenever possible. If you own rights to any of the images, and do not wish them to appear on TravelTriangle, please contact us and they will be promptly removed. We believe in providing proper attribution to the original author, artist or photographer.

Please Note:  Any information published by TravelTriangle in any form of content is not intended to be a substitute for any kind of medical advice, and one must not take any action before consulting a professional medical expert of their own choice.

Frequently Asked Questions About Sri Lanka Tourist Places

How safe is sri lanka from the coronavirus epidemic.

The Sri Lankan government and the tourist department are taking strict measures to curb the situation related to the Coronavirus outbreak. Visa-on-arrival has been prohibited to tourists from China and screening tests are in effect at the international airports.

What are the most beautiful places in Sri Lanka?

There are various places in the country of Sri Lanka that are considered to be quite beautiful. Some of them are: 1. Polonnaruwa 2. Yala National Park 3. Temple of the Tooth Relic 4. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage 5. Adams Peak 6. Nuwara Eliya 7. Beira Lake

What is Sri Lanka famous for?

Sri Lanka is known for its culture. There’s a lot to explore and experience in this country. You can even go shopping at this place for a great experience. You can buy gems, tea, fabrics, handicrafts, antiques, ceramics, leather products, and more.

How many days are enough for Sri Lanka?

To cover maximum places in the country of Sri Lanka during your vacay and make the most of it, you need to plan a trip for at least 5 days and 4 nights.

What are the best Buddhist places in Sri Lanka?

The best Buddhist places in Sri Lanka are Mirisawetiya Stupa, Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple, and Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara.

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16 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka

Written by Freddy Sherman Updated May 13, 2023

The South Asian island nation of Sri Lanka offers visitors a dizzying array of things to see and do. You can experience tourist attractions like the towering new Lotus Tower in the capital city of Colombo , or see elephants living their best life in the forest at Minneriya National Park. There are also outdoor attractions like doing a leopard-watching safari at Yala National Park or hiking a pilgrimage trail at night to see the sunrise on the summit of Adam's Peak.

Yala National Park, Sri Lanka

All these exciting things to do are joined with some of the world's most beautiful natural landscapes offering varied environments, from tropical beaches to mountains to rainforests. Add in thousands of years of culture, interesting foreign colonial influence, very friendly people, beautiful beach resorts and you get one of the world's great vacation destinations.

Plan your sightseeing in this captivating country with our list of the top tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

1. Yala National Park

2. temple of the sacred tooth relic, 3. udawalawe national park, 4. colombo lotus tower, 5. sigiriya the ancient rock fortress, 6. adam's peak, 7. golden temple of dambulla, 8. galle dutch fort, 9. nine arches bridge, 10. minneriya national park, 11. ridiyagama safari park, 12. sri lanka national museum, 13. national museum of natural history, 14. gangaramaya temple, 15. red mosque, 16. national museum of kandy, map of tourist attractions in sri lanka.

Sri Lankan leopard in Yala National Park

This is where you can do a safari experience Sri Lankan style. The huge national park borders the Indian Ocean and has a wide range of different ecosystems. From the marine environment of the coastline to grasslands to tropical rainforests inland.

People come to see the park's elephants, leopards, and crocodiles. Leopards are the easiest animal to see, as Yala has the highest "leopard density" in the world. There are many elephants, too, and you're likely to encounter them on the roads within the park, as they use them to get around, too! There are also over 200 bird species that make their home in the park area, including several endemic to Sri Lanka.

Aside from the fauna and flora, the park is home to two historic and very popular religious pilgrimage sites. The temples of Situlpahuwa and Magul Vihara draw four times as many visitors to the park as the animals do.

Yala National Park is on the southeast coast of the island near the city of Hambantota. Buttala is the nearby town, and you can stay there if you want to explore the park over multiple days. A stay there is also a cool way to experience real, rural life in Sri Lanka.

Read More: Best Places to Visit in Sri Lanka

Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic

Also in the city of Kandy (right next to the National Museum of Kandy), this temple, and the relic it houses, is one of the most sacred places on Earth for those of the Buddhist faith.

The relic, believed to be a tooth of the Buddha, also has an influence on the politics of Sri Lanka, as whoever possesses the tooth is supposed to be the rightful ruler of the country. The Temple of the Tooth is part of the royal palace complex.

There are rituals performed at the temple three times a day, with a special ritual bathing of the relic on Wednesdays. The holy water that results from the bathing is believed to have healing powers.

Udawalawe National Park

This smaller national park is mainly a popular tourist attraction for seeing elephants. Its small size, less than 120 square miles, and its large population of more than 250 elephants mean it's guaranteed you will see them.

Located about 100 miles from Columbo in the south-central part of the island, Udawalawe National Park is also a very important sanctuary for waterfowl and is a great place to visit for bird-watching.

Getting there is easy, and most people visit on an organized tour from Columbo or from one of the Hambantota resorts. Driving time is less than three hours from Columbo and about an hour from the beach resorts.

The drawback to Udawalawe is the park can be crowded and everyone wants to see the elephants. Safari jeep drivers work on tips and can be very competitive and aggressive about finding animals for their clients.

Aerial view of the Colombo Lotus Tower

One of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka is also one of the country's newest and the tallest. The Colombo Lotus Tower opened in 2019 as South Asia's tallest, free-standing structure .

Although it's a popular tourist attraction, the tower was built for a much more utilitarian reason: it's the hub of the country's radio, TV, and mobile phone networks and their antennas. The lotus bulb-inspired tower, which overlooks the entire city and the Indian Ocean, is 1,168 feet (368 meters) tall and is a great place to snap some Instagram-worthy shots.

There's a shopping mall in the base of the tower. From here, you can take super-fast elevators up to both indoor and outdoor observation areas. There's also a revolving restaurant at the top , which is a very popular spot for romantic dinners.

Skip the fancy restaurant, and try your luck at the food court in the mall. You'll find a delicious array of stalls offering Sri Lankan street food. The exterior of the Lotus Tower is covered with LED lighting, and they do light shows each evening and on special holidays.

Sigiriya

This ancient rock fortress was once the mountaintop palace of the island's king. Believed to have been constructed during the 4 th and 5 th centuries CE, the palace ruins are at the top of a 660-foot (220-meter) rock formation.

The sides of the mountain had giant frescoes painted on them, and halfway up the mountain, there's a giant gateway carved in the shape of a lion. The structure's name means lion rock in ancient Sanskrit.

The palace above and the city complex below are one of the world's most important examples of urban planning in the first millennium. The ruins are near the town of Dambulla in the Central Province of the country.

Adam's Peak

This large, sacred mountain (7,359 feet/2,243 meters), is topped with a rock formation that has significance to many religions.

At the summit, there is a large boulder with an imprint that looks like a footprint. To Buddhists, it's the footprint of Buddha; to Muslims and Christians, it's the footprint of Adam (thus the site's Western name); and to Hindus, it was created by the deity Shiva.

Whatever your belief, Adam's Peak is a beautiful natural site to visit, and it's a cool adventure to climb the mountain. The pilgrimage path is mainly steps and stairs, and it takes at least a few hours each way.

The mountain is accessed from routes beginning in the village of Nallathanniya in central Sri Lanka. The best times to climb it are between December and May. Most people start the climb at night, so they reach the summit at sunrise.

There are six trails leading to the summit, with varying journey times and varying degrees of difficulty. The paths are lighted at night, and the activity is great for families, as children can easily do it, too. There are rest stops and food vendors along the way.

Golden Temple of Dambulla

Throughout Sri Lanka there are natural caves that have been enlarged and excavated to be turned into cave temples. Like other temples, they honor Buddha and other deities (and a few kings) with large statues and relics.

The Dambulla cave temple is a UNESCO World Heritage site . It's the largest cave temple complex in the country and the best preserved. Of particular interest are the beautiful, now-preserved and conserved colorful wall murals that decorate the cave walls.

Aside from the cave temples, there is a large, golden Buddha statue at the base of the mountain, giving the site its other name, the Golden Temple of Dambulla. Dambulla is about two hours outside Colombo.

Aerial view of Galle Dutch Fort

This 16 th -century Dutch fortress and walled town has been turned into a large tourist attraction. Originally built by the Portuguese in the 16 th century, most of the structures date to the Dutch colonial period in the 17 th century. More than a fort, it's a small fortified village, with homes, churches, a mosque, and lots of shops all within the fortress walls.

You can visit the fort and the lighthouse, and there are several museums on the site along with big shopping areas. The Fort, on the southwest coast Sri Lanka, about two hours south of Colombo, is a popular tourist destination with a lot of boutique hotels, some located within the fort's walls.

Train passing over the Nine Arches Bridge

One of the iconic images of Sri Lanka, this relic of the British colonial era is a strikingly beautiful example of the beauty of practical, industrial design. Built by local workers in consultation with British engineers, the viaduct bridge has nine arches over its 300-foot span. It rises 80 feet above the river and remains in use today, over 100 years after its construction.

You can visit the bridge two ways: by traveling to it by tuk-tuk from Ella or by taking a train that traverses it. The Nine Arches Bridge is located between the Ella and Demodara stations on the main train line. Train journeys (usually from Kandy to Ella) that cross the bridge are considered one of the best things to do in Sri Lanka and one of the most beautiful train journeys in the world.

When visiting from Ella, it's possible to (carefully) walk across the bridge, and this is one of the most popular Instagram spots in the country because of the dramatic views.

Herds of elephants at the Minneriya National Park in Sri Lanka

The best place to see elephants in Sri Lanka isn't at a so-called sanctuary or orphanage, it's in their natural habitat in Minneriya National Park. Some of the commercial parks have been known to exploit the animals, including chaining them in the river to create better photo opportunities.

The lush park is important as it's a dry season (July through October) feeding area for the elephants who live in the surrounding forest areas, drawing more than 500 animals at one time.

The park is also home to a few species of monkeys, different types of deer, leopards, and sloth bears. It's a popular place to visit for photo safaris. Minneriya is in the north-central area of Sri Lanka, about three hours from Colombo. It's a popular day-trip tourist destination and many tour operators and hotels in Columbo offer day trips.

Ridiyagama Safari Park

While Sri Lanka's national parks showcase the country's native flora and fauna, the Ridiyagama Safari Park near Hambantota has animals from all over the world. This safari park tourist attraction allows visitors to get an African safari experience, complete with lions, zebras, giraffes, cape buffaloes, and other animals indigenous to Africa.

The drive-through safari park covers over 500 acres and has three zones. There's an African Lion Zone, the Sri Lankan Elephant Zone, and a World Zone. The park is near the Hambantota resort area and is a fun family day trip if you're staying at one of the area's resorts.

Many local tour providers and the major resorts offer a park visit experience, picking you up at your hotel, taking you through the safari park in their vehicle, then returning you to your hotel. It's a great thing to do in Sri Lanka for kids and families.

Sri Lanka National Museum

This large museum, formerly called the National Museum of Colombo, tells the fascinating story of the Sri Lankan people and their culture. The Sri Lanka National Museum collection includes various kinds of things, from artifacts to artwork along with jewelry, coins, money, arms, and crafts.

The museum has multiple levels and showcases both cultural and natural exhibits. Everything is shown chronologically, starting with the island's prehistoric history.

You'll find the museum in central Colombo, near Viharamahadevi Park. It's housed in a Victorian colonial building that was purpose-built for the museum and opened in 1877.

Elephant skeleton at the National Museum of Natural History

After you've visited the Sri Lanka National Museum and learned about Sri Lanka's cultural history, head to the nearby National Museum of Natural History to trace its physical, wildlife, and natural history.

This museum shows the country's incredible indigenous natural history, with examples of animals, plants, and minerals that are endemic to the South Asian island. The island's ancient and prehistoric history is also on display, with some cool fossils and skeletons including those of dinosaurs.

It's across from Viharamahadevi Park in central Colombo.

Buddha statues at the Gangaramaya Temple

Located in Central Colombo near Beira Lake, this 19 th -century Buddhist temple complex interestingly includes a vintage car museum . There's a cool 1930s Mercedes and a very rare Rolls-Royce Ghost from the 1920s. The temple is also a religious museum with examples of religious coins, jewelry, and sculpture.

The temple was created around a sacred tree to house a sacred relic, a lock of the Buddha's hair. Each year during the Poya or full moon ceremony in February, there's a festival and procession around the area led by the temple's resident elephant.

Red Mosque

A visit to the striking red and white brick Red Mosque (called "Jami Ul-Alfar Masjid") will yield some insight into the local practice of Islam, as well as some awesome Instagram pics.

Inside, the mosque showcases typical religious artwork and design, but it's the outside that really makes it extra special. The exterior red and white bricks are arranged in sometimes eye-fooling designs of spirals, swirls, and alternating patterns. The impact has also made the mosque a visual landmark, easy to spot from arriving ships (it's visible from Colombo Harbor).

The minarets of the mosque are topped with onion-shaped domes, reminiscent of Red Square. The style is called "Indo-Saracenic," and it was a popular architectural style in Asia in the early 19 th century when this mosque was built.

National Museum of Kandy

Kandy is a city in the central part of Sri Lanka and is important, as it was the kingdom's last capital city before the colonial era. The beautiful city and its unique history can be explored at the National Museum of Kandy .

The main part of the museum is housed in what was the home of the king's harem; additional exhibits are inside the former palace. The museum is filled with artifacts that tell the story of the Kandian era, the time between the 15 th and 18 th centuries, when the area maintained its independence despite colonization of other parts of the island.

Aside from historic objects and artifacts, the museum has an incredible collection of Sri Lankan art, as it's an official repository for native artwork.

More Related Articles on PlanetWare.com

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Beaches and Resorts: One of the highlights of a visit to Sri Lanka is the beaches. Soft sands line many areas of the coast and make great places to base yourself. For a more detailed look, see our guide to the Best Beaches in Sri Lanka , including tips on the best beach resorts.

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Tourism Teacher

45 Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka + Detailed Guide

Disclaimer: Some posts on Tourism Teacher may contain affiliate links. If you appreciate this content, you can show your support by making a purchase through these links or by buying me a coffee . Thank you for your support!

There are some magnificent tourist attractions in Sri Lanka that you do not want to miss. In this guide I provide detailed information on the top tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, how to get there, ticket prices and places to stay alongside other helpful tips and tricks to help plan your Sri Lanka itinerary.

Ready to learn more about the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka? Read on…

Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka

Where is kandy, how to get to kandy, the temple of the sacred tooth relic, tea factories and plantations, dalada maligawa museum, bahiravokanda vihara buddha statue, udawattakele forest reserve, peradeniya royal botanical garden, where to stay in kandy, what is sigiriya, how to get to sigiriya, pidurangala, minneriya national park, archaeological museum, where is nuwara eliya, how to get to nuwara eliya, weather in nuwara eliya, visit the tea plantations, st. clair’s falls, seetha amman temple, hakgala botanical garden, colonial architecture, gregory lake, where to stay in nuwara eliya, where is anuradhapura, how to get to anuradhapura, other ancient ruins, ruwanwelisaya, jaya sri maha boodhi, wilpattu national park, where to stay in the city, tips for visiting anuradhapura , where is bentota, how to get to bentota, water sports, turtle hatching centre, other activities in bentota, where to stay in bentota, where is yala national park, how to get to yala, what’s the weather like in yala, visit the national park, birdwatching, tsunami memorial, sithulpauwwa, where to stay in yala, what is polonnaruwa, getting to pollonnaruwa, irrigation system, archaeological museum, royal palace group, the scared quadrangle, shiva devale no.2, other statues and monuments, where to stay in polonnaruwa, what is adam’s peak, where is adam’s peak, climbing adam’s peak, staying in dalhousie, what is little adam’s peak, where is little adam’s peak, climbing little adam’s peak, budget accommodation, mid-range accommodation, luxury accommodation, tourist attractions in sri lanka- to conclude.

There are many tourist attractions in Sri Lanka scattered throughout the country. I have organised this post by destinations in Sri Lanka, to help planning your trip a little bit easier. Keep reading to find out about the major tourist attractions in Sri Lanka and where they are…

Lets start of this article about tourist attractions in Sri Lanka in Kandy.

Kandy is a wonderful place in Sri Lanka, full of culture and history and plenty of tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. We loved our two day visit and we recommend that Kandy is included on any Sri Lanka travel itinerary .

Here is everything you need to know when planning your visit…

Located in the Central Province of Sri Lanka, Kandy is a major city within the hills of the eponymous plateau. It is also home to tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. It is the current capital city of the Central Province, and was also the last capital of the ancient kings’ era of Sri Lanka.

Kandy has had various names. These include Katubulu Nuwara, and the much longer Senkadagala Siriwardhana Maha Nuwara. This roughly translates as great city of Senkadagala of growing resplendence. It is thought that this name came from a brahmin named Senkanda, who lived in a nearby cave – or a queen who was also named Senkanda, or perhaps a coloured stone called Senkadagala. 

The English name ‘Kandy’ comes from the colonial era of Sri Lanka. During this time, the name ‘Sinhala Kanda Uda Rata’ – which means the land on the mountain – was shortened and anglicised. This gave Kandy the name that many know it by today!

Currently, Kandy does not have its own international airport. The closest airport to the city is Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo. You can fly here from London, Dubai , Melbourne, Chennai, Delhi, Moscow and various other major cities.

Getting from Colombo to Kandy is simple. Both are big cities, so there are a variety of ways to travel between the two. There is a domestic airport in Kandy, and you can fly here from Diyawanna Oya (DWO) Airport – a 6 mile taxi ride from Colombo. However, this can be incredibly costly and involves multiple journeys. Consider the train or bus instead!

Costing just £1-2 GBP, the train from Colombo to Kandy takes around three hours. Take any of the trains heading to Badulla (or one that terminates at Kandy itself) from Fort Station. Trains run daily between 5.55am and 5.45pm.

There is also a direct bus route from Colombo. It leaves every 20 minutes, and takes just over three hours. Again it will only set you back around £1 – which is fantastic for such a straightforward journey. The bus leaves from Colombo Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal, and drops you at Kandy Good Shed Bus Station.

Because we were tight for time and wanted to pack as much into our Sri Lanka trip as possible, we booked this tour with Viator . I love Viator because they offer such a wide range of tours for a variety of budgets. You also know that the company is legitimate and that you will get your money back if there are any problems.

Things to do in Kandy

There is so much to do in Kandy, involving several tourist attractions in Sri Lanka – here are some of the best bits. They’re the ones you really shouldn’t miss if you do visit this incredible city!

This Buddhist temple is located in Kandy. It is one of the most fascinating tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Legend has it that this beautiful temple was built around the Buddha’s tooth, which was gifted to the Sri Lanka monarchy way back when. Tourists and worshippers can visit the tooth, held inside a golden stupa inside a two-story shrine.

Kandy Lake is located here too, incomplete and known as the Milky Ocean – and perfect for a relaxing stroll.

We really enjoyed our visit to the important site in Kandy. There just so happened to be some kind of festival on the evening that we visited and it was REALLY busy. However, we got to see the famous tooth (fo about 5 seconds) and it was a fascination cultural tourism experience.

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Like many other parts of Sri Lanka, Kandy has plenty of tea factories and plantations. You can do a tour of the lush green fields, taste tea at its freshest and learn about the history and process of tea making. Perfect for those tea-obsessives out there!

Dalada Maligawa Museum is all about Buddhism. It highlights the spread of the religion throughout Asia and worldwide, and there is so much to see and learn here. It is one of the most interesting tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

The museum is perfect for helping your children understand more about other religions, too. There are also plenty of other parts of Kandy that provide a learning opportunity, as well as just showcasing the beauty of Buddhism.

Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue is a giant Buddha statue that overlooks the city. You can climb up here, and it’s well worth doing so. The views are incredible… in fact, this is one of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka for vistas!

GOOD TO KNOW: if you do plan on climbing up to the huge Buddha statue, do so early in the morning or towards the evening. The heat can be unbearable in the middle of the day.

There are so many tourist attractions in Sri Lanka based in Kandy. Udawattakele Forest Reserve is an urban forest that was once the garden of the kings of Kandy; it is now a wildlife sanctuary, and home to all sorts of plants, mammals and reptiles.

Peradeniya Royal Botanical Garden serves as Kandy’s main spice garden. All sorts of incredible smells fill the air, and there are beautiful plants and flowers too. It is one of my favourite natural tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

There are a lot of options for accommodation in Kandy. Here are some of my recommendations.

We spent Christmas Day in Kandy and really enjoyed staying at Kings Pavilion Luxury Hotel , where we enjoyed some well-deserved relaxation time in the beautiful pool overlooking the Sri Lankan Tea Plantations and fields. The food was lovely and there was a great atmosphere during the Christmas party. And they even had a Sri Lankan Santa!

Kandy. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Signature Kandy is a guest house a couple of miles from the city centre. Each room has its own bathroom, and the accommodation has free WiFi and free parking. There is ample outdoor space, a shared kitchen, and beautiful views. Shops, restaurants and landmarks are within easy reach of this guest house, and there is even an airport shuttle!

Funk Bunks Kandy offers a variety of rooms. From double rooms to family rooms as well as large dormitories where you can book a single bed, there’s something for every kind of traveller. Just a mile away from the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, this accommodation offers free WiFi, free parking and daily housekeeping. There is a bar and restaurant on-site, and various activities can be arranged.

Queen’s Hotel allows you to take a step back in time. A colonial style building with spacious rooms and a fantastic restaurant, the hotel is less than a mile from so many of Kandy’s main attractions. There is a pool, free WiFi, free parking and more.

Not convinced by these hotels? Use the search box below to see the full list of available accommodations for your travel dates.

Sigiriya is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, and for good reason!

This rock has historical value, teaches tourists about the local culture AND provides an incredible viewpoint of the surrounding countryside areas and mountains. So why wouldn’t you visit Sigiriya on you revisit to Sri Lanka?

Anybody can climb Sigiriya rock- if I did it with a baby on my back, anyone can do it! But it’s worth knowing a bit about the area and what it has to offer before you go to make the most of your trip.

Sigiriya, also known as Sinhagiri, is an ancient rock fortress and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. It is located in the northern Matale District in the Central Province of Sri Lanka.

Dominated by a huge column of rock (around 200 metres high) it is an incredibly significant historical and archaeological site.

The Culavamsa, the ancient Sri Lankan chronicle, states that this site was chosen by King Kashyapa for his new capital. He ruled from around 473 – 495 AD. On top he built a palace, decorated with vivid and colourful frescoes, and half way up the rock he built a gateway in the shape of a ginormous lion. This lion, in fact, gives the place its name. Sinhagiri means the lion rock.

Sigiriya. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Now, the area is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After Kashyapa died, the palace – and the capital it stood in – were abandoned. It was subsequently used as a Buddhist monastery until the 14th century, and is now said to be one of the most well-preserved examples of ancient urban planning, making this one of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

After being abandoned, it was re-discovered in 1831 by Major Jonathan Forbes. He was a British army major. He was riding his horse in the area and came across the giant rock, palace and lion sculpture!

As mentioned, Sigiriya is located in the Matale District of Sri Lanka’s Central Province. The closest city is Dambulla. From here, Colombo is 148 km away and Kandy is around 72 km away. 

FUN FACT: Dambulla is actually the centre of vegetable distribution in Sri Lanka.

If you are planning to visit Sigiriya, then Dambulla is a great starting point. To get there from Colombo, the most direct way is to hire a car and drive (around 2.5 hours) or get the bus. This takes about 4 hours, but only costs the equivalent of £1 GBP. The bus goes directly from Colombo Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal to Dambulla. It runs approximately every 15 minutes.

Getting to Dambulla from Kandy is slightly more complicated. Buses are infrequent and you have to swap – go from Kandy Clock Tower Bus Station to Ambepussa (the number 8 towards Colombo Fort) and then get the 48-17 from there towards Wlkanda, jumping off at Dambulla. Alternatively, a taxi will cost around £25. If you have hired a car, the drive takes just over an hour.

Once you’re in Dambulla, you’re around a 20 minute drive from Sigiriya. If you aren’t driving yourself, a taxi will cost in the region of £4-6 GBP. There are also guided tours that include transport , and they often combine other places in the area such as Polonnaruwa .

Visiting Sigiriya

If you prefer DIY-style and don’t want to book a guided tour, then here are some tips for visiting Sigiriya!

There are 1200 steps up to the top, so wear your comfiest shoes- this is one of the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka that gets your blood flowing! Walking boots, sturdy sandals or good trainers are a must. Your flip flops will be useless here!

The steps are divided into several staircases, though, so there’s plenty of rest opportunities. Be warned that the last set of steps are metal, and these can get a bit slippy when it’s been raining. Just something to bear in mind…

GOOD TO KNOW: there are no restrictions on what you can wear here in terms of it being a semi-religious site. Shorts and a t-shirt will be fine!

It isn’t cheap to visit Sigiriya. While locals can visit the site for just Rs50, tourists have to pay around Rs2,1500. This equates to $30 USD or £23 GBP. If you want a guide while you are there, expect to pay an added Rs1,000 or thereabouts.

Sigiriya. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

There are ancient ruins all of Sigiriya. Water gardens, terraced gardens, boulder gardens – they’re all over the rock. These are some of the oldest landscaped gardens in the world, and they are incredibly special to see.

Beautiful frescoes adorn the site, too. Cobra Hood Cave is the best part of Sigiriya for seeing the artwork!

For those particularly interested in architecture, the site is an absolute goldmine. The plan is elaborate and intuitive, making use of both symmetry and asymmetry alongside the natural structures that were already in place. There are many smaller tourist attractions in Sri Lanka within this site that you will love.

TIP: it takes around an hour to get straight to the top of the rock, but chances are you will want to stop along the way to snap some photos of the view and the wonders of Sigiriya itself!

Visit in the morning. It gets really hot around midday, as well as being busy. The site is open from 7.30 am until 5.30 pm, and most say the best time to go is around 8.00 am after the initial crowds have started climbing.

You want to make sure your visit is as fun and comfortable as possible! Wear your SPF, and take some water with you. Maybe some snacks too…

Sigiriya. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Once you’ve made the climb and rested your legs, there are plenty of other tourist attractions in Sri Lanks based close by. If your legs can handle it, climb up Pidurangala. From here you will get incredible views of Sigiriya itself, although it is a bit more of a difficult climb… However, it’s definitely the cheaper option at only Rs500.

Minneriya National Park is nearby, and if seeing elephants is high on your Sri Lanka to-do list then this is the place to go. Kaudulla National Park is another good choice for seeing elephants as well as a variety of beautiful birds and is one of the favourite tourist attractions in Sri Lanka for many people.

Sigiriya. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

There is also an archaeological museum at Sigiriya, which is really interesting for those into history. Perfect if you want to know more about the area!

Nuwara Eliya

Nuwara Eliya is a beautiful part of Sri Lanka that shouldn’t be missed and is home to some fantastic tourist attractions in Sri Lanka!

Located in the Central Province of Sri Lanka, Nuwara Eliya is a city within the rolling hills. Its name means city of light or city on the plane. It has a stunning landscape, mild climate and colonial buildings and some of the most interesting tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

The closest airport is Colombo International Airport. At around 167 km away, it isn’t particularly close – the drive takes around three hours. You can hire a car from the airport, or get a taxi. The journey costs between £35 and £50 GBP in a taxi. If you are already in Colombo, you can head to Colombo Fort and get the 79-1 bus towards Welimada. This takes around 5 and a half hours, but saves on costs for budget travellers.

If you happen to be staying in Kandy, you’re around an hours drive away from Nuwara Eliya. A taxi will set you back around £26 GBP. There is a bus route too: get the 22-9 from Kandy in the direction of Colombo Fort, and get off around an hour later at Peradeniya. From here, take the 79-1 towards Welimada. This takes you to Magasthota Junction, a 5 minute walk from Nuwara Eliya. The whole journey takes a couple of hours, but is worth it if you’re travelling on a budget.

The temperature in Nuwara Eliya is really mild. Ranging from 10°C – 20°C in the winter, and 14°C – 19°C in the summer, it’s never too cold or too warm. April is the warmest month, though, with temperatures reaching up to 23°C.

Things to do in Nuwara Eliya

The area is the most important place for tea production in Sri Lanka, so there are many tea-related activities you can do in Nuwara Eliya, which are some of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

There are hundreds of acres of tea plantations across the city. You can visit tea factories, drink tea, eat tea-flavoured ice cream… the possibilities are endless! The tea plantations were some of y favourite tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Head to St. Clair’s Falls to see a beautiful waterfall surrounded by tea plantations and you won’t be disappointed! This is one of my favourite tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Seetha Amman Temple is high on a lot of people’s lists when visiting Nuwara Eliya. It is a stunning Hindu temple, adorned with bright colours and said to be the place where Sita was held captive by Rawana, the demon king. She prayed daily for Rama to come and rescue her.

There are circular impressions on the rock face across the stream from the temple – these are said to be the footprints of Rawana’s elephant.

Devoted Hindus flock here due to the legend associated with the temple, and it is a beautiful to visit for non-Hindus too.

Hakgala Botanical Garden in Nuwara Eliya is the highest-altitude botanical garden in the world, making this one of the most famous tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. Not only this, but it is also the second largest garden in Sri Lanka.

The space was transformed into a botanical garden in the late 1800s, and there are so many beautiful plants and perfectly groomed flowerbeds to admire.

There is plenty of colonial architecture to admire in Nuwara Eliya. The post office is a popular one, but walking around the streets is a treat.

The Grand Hotel is another example of this. They served afternoon tea, which is really luxurious and a great way to spend a few hours. They also serve all sorts of tea-related drinks (even cocktails) if you don’t fancy a full on spread!

Gregory Lake is amazing for boat trips and is one of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka for watersports.

You can also jet ski or go speed-boating, and there are pony rides and chopper tours available. Bikes are available to hire here too! The lake is incredibly scenic, and a lovely place to relax and enjoy the weather.

Nuwara Eliya. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

There are plenty of places to stay in Nuwara Eliya. Whether you’re looking for luxury, or hoping to save your coins for another cup of Sri Lankan tea, you’ll be able to find the perfect place for you. Here are some options…

Laughing Leopard Hostel, on Udapusewalla Road, is around 1.7 miles from Gregory Lake. It has free WiFi, a garden and terrace area, and a 24-hour front desk. There is free private parking, a shared kitchen and a buffet-style breakfast too. Choose from private rooms or a shared dormitory, and enjoy the laid-back atmosphere. Previous guests have praised the staff, the cleanliness and the common areas.

Heritance Tea Factory is the height of colonial-style. Right in the mountains, this luxurious hotel has a spa, organic tea leaves for you to make tea with, and rain showers in every bathroom. Mini golf and billiards add to the colonial feeling, and the restaurant serves a mixture of Eastern and Western dishes. You can even dine inside a train carriage! Free WiFi and parking are available, and the hotel has all the amenities you might need. Previous guests really rate the food, friendly service and the tea plucking experience.

UYOU Ceylon Guest House is a bright blue building just a 5 minute walk from the bus station. You can’t miss it! There is an on-site restaurant, free private parking and free WiFi. With twin, double and triple rooms available, there is something for everyone. There is a bar with a fire and a pool table, and everywhere is lovely and colourful. Previous guests praise the comfortable beds, great location and friendly staff.

Anuradhapura

If you are looking for a major city to visit in Sri Lanka, then Anuradhapura should be on your list as there are lots of tourist attractions in Sri Lanka here.

Located in North Central Province, Sri Lanka, Anuradhapura is a bustling provincial capital city. It is also the capital of the Anuradhapura District itself as well as being one of Sri Lanka’s ancient capitals! Th city of Anuradhapura lies on the banks of Malvathu River.

Now, the city is a UNSECO World Heritage Site. It is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities anywhere in the world, and is popular with history-loving tourists and travellers from across the globe. It is home to many of the historic tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Anuradhapura. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Colombo, the main capital of Sri Lanka, is around 205 km away from Anuradhapura. You can hire a car in Colombo and drive to Anuradhapura, which takes just under four hours. A taxi would cost just under £100 GBP.

If public transport is your preferred method, you can take either the train or bus to Anuradhapura. There are various trains that leave from Fort Station early in the morning, and it takes just over three hours. Leaving four times daily, the bus from Colombo Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal takes around five hours. The bus and train each cost around £1-3 GBP, so they are the perfect option for budget travellers.

Kandy is slightly closer. The drive to Anuradhapura takes around 2.5 hours – and a taxi will cost around £45 GBP. However, there is no direct train or bus from Kandy. You can get the train to Polgahawela Station from Kandy, and jump on another train from there to Anuradhapura. By bus, you have to get from Kandy to Kegalle and then from Kegalle to Polgahawela. The train is definitely more straightforward! Again, by public transport the journey only costs around £3.

You can also book a day trip to Anuradhapura, which can be a great option if you have a busy itinerary or are staying near by.

** Click here to book a day trip to Anuradhapura! **

Things to do in Anuradhapura

There are so many tourist attractions in Sri Lanka based in this ancient capital city. Here are some of the very best!

Mihintale, thought to be the birth place of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, is incredibly special. A hill with some rudimentary steps and a wobbling railing, this is somewhere that definitely requires sensible footwear!

The view from the top is spectacular, and it is obviously a sacred area. This is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Entry costs Rs500. This includes nearby religious sites too; make sure to cover your shoulders and knees when visiting.

Anuradhapura. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

GOOD TO KNOW: you might spot some monkeys at Mihintale!

There are so many ancient ruins in Anuradhapura- These are some of the most remarkable tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. Ratna Prasada, originally a 7 story jewel palace, has a beautiful guard stone at its entrance. Ranmasu Uyana is a great example of ancient archaeology and technology, while the Royal Palace, Vijayabahu Maligaya, is a fascinating site too.

Anuradhapura has plenty of other sites of religious significance too. Ruwanwelisaya is the tallest Dagoba in the whole of Sri Lanka, and is incredibly peaceful and pretty.

Jaya Sri Maha Boodhi, an ancient spiritual tree, is a popular place for Buddhist pilgrims. The atmosphere is one of absolute bliss making this one of the favourite tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

If you want to catch a stunning sunset, head to Tissa Wewa. This is an artificial reservoir, and provides space for a relaxing stroll. You’ll be able to spot two gorgeous white stupas (rounded structures used for Buddhist meditation) in the distance. This is one of the mopst relaxing tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

For animal lovers, Wilpattu National Park is the city’s go to. There is no end to the amount of different animals you’ll see on your Anuradhapura safari here. Keep your eyes peeled for elephants, deer, bears, foxes, leopards, birds and many, many more.

No matter what your budget is, you’ll find somewhere stay in this incredible city. Use the search box to find a list of available hotels on your travel dates. Or alternatively, check out my personal recommendations below!

Heaven Upon Rice Fields offer clean and bright accommodation, with a private bathroom in every room. There is free WiFi, air conditioning and free parking. Rooms have hairdryers and toiletries, and the hotel offers breakfast too. There is plenty of outdoor space, and you can even hire a bike from this hotel if you fancy cycling around Anuradhapura. 

Belmond Lake Hotel has everything you could possibly need – including a spa! There is free WiFi, a 24-hour front desk, room service and a children’s play area. Rooms have private bathrooms, and there is a terrace area as well as other outdoor seating space. Airport transfers can be arranged, and there is free parking should you need it.

Liyana Holiday Resort , just two miles from Anuradhapura Railway Station, is another great option. With free WiFi, free parking, easy check in and a restaurant, you’ll get on well here. The hotel has outdoor spaces for relaxing in the sun, garden view rooms and an airport shuttle service too!

If you are travelling to/around Sri Lanka on a budget, there are plenty of hostels in Anuradhapura . Whether you want a cheap private room or are happy to take a bed in a dormitory, there are ways to ensure that your trip fits with your planned costs.

With year-round temperatures falling between 22 and 24°C, the city has a warm climate. However, autumn/winter is incredibly rainy. June-September are the best months to visit to ensure sunny days!

For the equivalent of around £20 GBP, you can purchase a UNSECO cultural heritage pass. This allows you to gain access to many of the archaeological and historic sites around Anuradhapura. Grab one of these from the Archaeology Museum. They are open from 8.30 am until 5.00 pm every day, except for Tuesdays when they are closed.

If you are travelling around Sri Lanka, then aim for 2-3 days in Anuradhapura because there are so many of the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka that are based here. This is the perfect time to really make the most of this ancient capital city and everything it has to offer.

Bentota is a great place for a beach break, offering the perfect mix of culture, adventure and rest and relaxation. It is home to some of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Located in the Galle District of the Southern Province of Sri Lanka, Bentota lies on the coast. It’s around 40 miles (as the crow flies) south of the capital city, Colombo. It’s a haven for tourists because of its beauty and attractions, but it’s not somewhere that’s overcrowded. In my opinion, it is one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka for families . These beaches are some of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Getting to Bentota is fairly straightforward. The nearest international airport is Bandaranaike International Airport in the capital – you can fly into here from places such as Melbourne, Kuala Lumpar, Chennai and Dubai. We flew direct from London with Sri Lankan Airways and got a great price on Skyscanner .

From the airport, there are various ways you can travel to Bentota. Katunayake Airport Bus Station is a 16 minute walk from arrivals – jump on the 187-E CMB towards Colombo, which takes 45 minutes and will cost the equivalent of £1 GBP. At Colombo Bastian Maratha Bus Terminal, you can get a bus to Aluthgama (£1 GBP, taking 2 hours).

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Alternatively you can alight and walk to Fort Station (11 minutes away). You can get the train to Aluthgama Station from here, which again costs the equivalent of £1 GBP and takes around 57 minutes. Aluthgama is a mile from Bentota, and you can walk or get a taxi into town.

TIP: the train to Aluthgama only runs every 4 hours, so it might be worth spending some time in Colombo before heading to the station!

If DIY-travel isn’t for you, and you’d rather head straight to Bentota, you can get a taxi. This will take just under 1.5 hours and should cost around £40-55 GBP. Alternatively, you may be able to arrange a transfer with your hotel.

Because our visit to Bentota was part of a larger trip travelling around Sri Lanka, we didn’t need to worry about how we would get there. We booked this customised tour on Viator , which was just perfect for us and encompassed lots of the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Things to see and do in Bentota

As Bentota is a resort town, it’s mostly for relaxing. But if you’ve spent a bit too long lying horizontal on a sun bed with a Pina Colada in hand, there are some other tourist attractions in Sri Lanka to check out instead…

Whilst not technically tourist attractions in Sri Lanka, there are plenty of water sports on offer in Bentota.

The crystal-clear turquoise water is the perfect place for wind surfing, banana boat rides, canyoning, jet skiing, wake boarding and more. You will find plenty of water sports centres in Bentota, and your hotel will be able to provide information and recommendations too.

If the thought of bouncing around the water is a bit much for you, go on a safari! You can do both river and land safaris in Bentota .

Many land safaris take tourists to nearby Udawalawe. Here you can see wild elephants, Sambur deer, water buffalo and more! The river safari will take you down the Bentota River where you can appreciate the pure serenity of the river and also spot crocodiles, chameleons, snakes and lizards.

TIP: sometimes the skippers on the river safaris will take you to see a captive crocodile, which is a photo opportunity. As some people are morally against this , it’s worth knowing in advance and possibly checking if this is the case with your safari when booking.

Of course, the beach at Bentota is not to be missed as this is one of the major tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Often referred to as the most beautiful beach in Sri Lanka, it provides the perfect place to laze around in the sun or play in the shallows. There is beautiful white sand, and the beach itself is well-maintained. There are bars and restaurants just off the beach too!

Also in the vicinity of the beach you’ll find a major attraction: the turtle hatching centre. This is one of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

The Sea Turtle Protection Association is located on Galle Road, and gives you the opportunity to see and hold different species of turtles. You are also invited back at sunset to see the recently-hatched turtles being released into the water.

It costs 2000 LKR per adult, and 1000 LKR per child. This money goes towards the conservation efforts in the area.

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

There are plenty of other tourist attractions in Sri Lanka based in Bentota and the surrounding areas. You can go whale watching , spend the day on a fishing trip , head to the nearby UNSECO-listed city of Kandy or explore the local area by Beetle .

Being a coastal resort, there are plenty of places to stay in Bentota. You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to picking the perfect hotel, so here are a few of the best to get you started…

Taj Bentota Resort & Spa is an amazing hotel! It offers spectacular views of the Indian Ocean. It has a pool, spa, and four different restaurants. Rooms range from superior through to residential, and have either garden or sea views. There’s free WiFi and parking on site, airport transfers can be arranged and check-in is 24 hours a day. With room service, spa treatments and the beach on your doorstep, this is perfect for romantic getaways.

Heritance Ahungalla is a 5 star property with a pool, tennis court and golf course on site. There’s a gym and karaoke too – so something for everyone! The hotel has free WiFi and free parking, spa facilities, evening entertainment, a variety of food and 24-hour check in. Previous reviews praise the friendly staff and excellent breakfast.

Hostel Residence Bentota has private rooms and dormitories, an outdoor pool, plenty of outdoor seating areas and a terrace too. There’s free private parking, and you can do your laundry here too if you’re a long-term traveller. The beach is around 5 minutes walk away, and previous guests can’t rate the American-style breakfast highly enough.

For a full list of available accommodation options on your travels dates use the search box below.

Yala isn’t always on everybody’s Sri Lanka itinerary, but it should be as this is home to some of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka!

Located in the southeast part of Sri Lanka, Yala National Park actually borders the Indian Ocean. It lies across two of the country’s provinces: Southern Province and Uva Province. This national park is home to some of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

The park covers 378 square miles (979 square kilometres), and it is the second largest national park in Sri Lanka. Yala National Park is actually made up of five blocks, as well as adjoining blocks and sanctuaries. This is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Yala National Park is around 190 miles (300 kilometres) away from Colombo, the capital city of Sri Lanka. Many people stay in Colombo when visiting Sri Lanka.

You can drive to the Yala area if you charter a taxi – it takes around 4.5 hours.

Alternatively, for a budget DIY way of travelling from Colombo to Yala National Park, take the EX 1-12/32 bus from Colombo Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal (heading towards Kataragama). Alight at Tangalle and get a taxi to the Yala area. The bus will cost around £1-2 GBP, with the taxi costing around £13 GBP.

We opted to do a customised tour during our travels through Sri Lanka. This allowed us to plan the itinerary and make sure that all the best bits were included, including a trip to Yala! You can find the tour we did here.

The Yala National Park area is warm. It’s not quite hot, but it’s definitely warm! Temperatures tend not to fluctuate too much throughout the year, either.

The coldest months (December through February) see lows of 23°C and highs of 30°C, while the warmest months (March-May) have lows of 24-26°C, and highs of 31°C. So no matter what time of year you visit, it is likely to be warm

The rainy months are April, May, September, October, November and December. February is the driest month, and despite being the coolest month it still has temperatures of between 23 and 30°C making it an optimum time to visit the Yala area.

Most safari trips start early in the morning before it gets light. At this time it can be a bit chilly, so I recommend that you pack a jumper.

Tip: Don’t forget to pack your mosquito repellent! When it starts getting light the mozzies will be out and about…

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Things to see at Yala National Park

The park itself and the surrounding area is a complete hotspot for eco-tourism in Sri Lanka. There is so much to see, and with blocks 1, 4 & 5 of Yala National Park being open to the public, plenty of opportunity to see it!

Entry to the park costs the equivalent of around £12 GBP for (foreign) adults and around half of this for children. Here you can hire a jeep with driver; this costs around £30 GBP for a half day, and just under £60 GBP for a full day. Jeeps hold up to six people and the cost remains the same.If you want to book in advance you can find some good options with Viator .

All of the tours seem to collect people at the same time in the morning (before it gets light). They then race to the park in the jeeps, which can be a bit of a rough ride so make sure you hold on! They then have to go and collect the tickets, which takes a while. So be prepared to wait in the jeep while your driver organises everything. We were waiting around 45 minutes, but some people were waiting longer.

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

This national park is one of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka and a safari is the best way to explore.

There are so many beautiful animals in the area, and you’ll have the opportunity to spot plenty of them: leopards, elephants, crocodiles, peacocks, sloths and more. To see animals relatively up close in their own environment is a rare treat for most people, and something that can’t be taken for granted. It is an absolute must if you’re in the area!

Birds are some of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka and bird watching is another fun way to spend the day at Yala.

There is a whole rainbow of birds present at the national park: from the Lesser Whistling Duck to the Eurasian Spoonbill, and the Painted Stork to the Ruddy Turnstone – there is no shortage of bright and beautiful birds flying and swooping through the trees and around the water.

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DID YOU KNOW: there are 44 varieties of mammal and 215 species of bird in the national park!

There is also an area of the Yala National Park that offers space to walk along the beach. With stunning views, clear blue water and soft white sand it is a beautiful place to relax, reflect and soak in the atmosphere.

Here you will also find a memorial to the victims of the 2004 tsunami. Around 250 people died in the national park as a result of the tragedy, and of course the land changed completely. No animals in Yala National Park were harmed during the tsunami, which has fascinated scientists and researchers.

This is one of the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka that invokes sadness, but it is important to remember.

For a truly wild experience, you can camp in the national park or stay in one of the wildlife bungalows. For more information and to book, click here . By staying within the park, you’ll be the first ones out on safari the following day!

If you want some history and culture as well as all the nature, visit Sithulpauwwa. This is an ancient rock temple, the name of which comes from ‘Chittalapabbata’ meaning the hill of the quiet mind. It is something of a pilgrimage for a lot of people, and is believed to have housed 12,000 monks in ancient times.

There are plenty of hotels and accommodation options in the surrounding area, just a few minutes away from Yala National Park. Here are a couple of my recommendations.

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Cinnamon Wild Yala is pure luxury. Just a five minute drive away from the national park, there are stunning chalets with private balconies, beach or jungle views, and private bathrooms. There is an outdoor pool, free WiFi, a restaurant offering both local and Western dishes, and 24-hour check in services. Spa facilities are available, and the hotel can provide a packed lunch for your day in the national park, too!

Best Hostel Yala is also just a few minutes drive away from Yala National Park. There is free WiFi, and the hostel offers double rooms as well as dormitories. All rooms have shared bathrooms, and staff are happy to organise national park tours for guests. Rooms are clean and basic, and there is plenty of socialising space.

There are also several other places to stay around Yala National Park. For a full list of accommodation options available on your travel dates use the search box below.

Polonnaruwa

When I travelled to Sri Lanka I had never heard of Polonnaruwa. But I am so glad that I did some research before hand (from reading blogs like this one!) and added it to my tour around Sri Lanka with a baby . Polonnaruwa really is a Sri Lankan gem and it should certainly not be overlooked if you’re planning a trip to Sri Lanka as it is home to so many incredible tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Located in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka, South Asia, Polonnaruwa is a large town and home to many ancient tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. The town is split into two distinct areas: Kaduruwela, the new town, and the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa. The latter is the royal ancient city that draws so many visitors to the area.

Polonnaruwa is the second most ancient of the Sri Lankan kingdoms, making this one of the most important tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. It was first established in the 10th century by the Chola dynasty. The ancient city is classed as a World Heritage Site, while the new town is undergoing major development: the Awakening of Polonnaruwa project is set to improve the roads, education, agriculture, health and more.

sri lanka with a baby. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

If you’re remotely interested in history or archaeology, you should definitely consider visiting Polonnaruwa. No matter where you’re staying, consider taking a short trip to the area.

When flying into Sri Lanka, most people land at Bandaranaike International Airport. This is located in Katunayake, 20 miles north of Sri Lanka’s capital, Colombo. The airport is around 4.5 hours from Polonnaruwa by car.

For DIY and budget travellers, getting from Bandaranaike International Airport to Polonnaruwa is actually quite straightforward and it is easy to visit these tourist attractions in Sri Lanka by yourself:

  • Walk around 15 minutes to Katunayake Airport Bus Station, and take the 187-E CMB to Colombo. This costs the equivalent of around £1 GBP, and takes 45 minutes to get to Colombo Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal. The bus leaves every 30 minutes.
  • From Colombo Bastian Mawatha Bus Terminal, walk for approximately 10 minutes to Fort Station. Here you can catch a train (5 times per day) to Habarana. It’ll cost you the equivalent of £1-3 GBP and takes just over an hour.
  • At Habarana, take a taxi to Polonnaruwa. This will take just under an hour, and only cost you the equivalent of around £11 GBP – if there’s a few of you travelling together, or you happen to bump into some fellow travellers going the same way, splitting costs makes it even cheaper!

TIP: if you are already staying in Colombo, follow the above journey from Fort Station to get to Polonnaruwa!

Things to see in the ancient city of Polonnaruwa

Once you’re there, what is there to see? There are plenty of tourist attractions in Sri Lanka based here!

Polonnaruwa was built at a time when Hinduism was flourishing, so the ancient city has stunning temples and statues.

It also has an irrigation system so good that the kingdom was completely self-sufficient during the reign King Parakramabahu! Here are some of the best things to marvel at when visiting Polonnaruwa…

At the entrance of the ancient city you’ll find the Archaeological Museum. If you want a brief introduction to what you’re about to see, head inside!

TIP: the entry fee for the ancient city is 4500 LKR (around £19 or $25). Visitors from SAARC countries pay half price with a valid passport shown on arrival.

When you first enter the ancient city of Polonnaruwa, you’re greeted with a group of ruins known as the Royal Palace Group, which are some of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Here you can walk around what remains of the King’s Royal Palace, the Audience Hall (one of the most well-preserved structures, with elephants carved into the walls and stone lions greeting you at the top of the steps) and the king’s swimming pool.

tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

The Scared Quadrangle is another group of ruins, located within their own raised up platform. These are more of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

You can see The Vatadage, a circular house with four entrances. An enormous Buddha guards each entrance.

TIP: visitors are advised to cover their knees and shoulders, as many of the ruins in the ancient city are sacred.

Shiva Devale No.2 is the oldest building in the ancient city of Polonnaruwa, making it one of the most notable tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

It is a stunning Hindu temple, barely touched by time and weather – a real must see to get a feel for how the area once looked.

Gal Vihara is another part of Polonnaruwa that you simply cannot miss. It is a group of four buddhas, in perfect condition, cut from one long slab of granite.

There are hundreds of statues, temples, houses and buildings in the ancient city as well as jungle traces too. These are all very impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

A lot of the trees have boards built into them – why? You can climb up and look out for elephants who have wandered away from the nearby National Parks.

TIP: considering hiring a bicycle to get around the ancient city –  many people do this. You can also book a guide to take you around Polonnaruwa.

There are a variety of places to stay that are close to the ancient city of Polonnaruwa. Here is a handful of them…

Livinginn Polonnaruwa has single, double and family rooms available. There’s free WiFi and parking, and you can hire bikes here easily. The accommodation has a spacious garden, 24-hour check in, and the location is near to the ruins of the ancient city. Previous guests praise the food, and say that it’s safe for solo travellers.

Seyara Holiday Resort is 1.2 miles away from the ancient city. It offers budget, standard and deluxe rooms. The hotel has a pool, free WiFi and free parking. There is a restaurant on site, and they offer bike rental too. Reviews praise it as having great food and being child-friendly.

Pharo Lake , on the shore of the stunning Lake Parakrama, has incredible views and elegant decor. There’s an outdoor pool, free WiFi, an airport shuttle service and free private parking. With a 24-hour front desk, evening entertainment and bike rental, this is also a place where you’re likely to spot elephant while eating your dinner!

Adam’s Peak

Adam’s Peak is a wonderful sight to see and a lot of fun to climb! This was one of my favourite tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Nature is truly remarkable – and it’s no wonder that people flock from around the world to see certain destinations. Adam’s Peak is no exception to that.

Adam’s Peak is a mountain in Sri Lanka and is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

It is a conical mountain, standing at 2,243 metres (7,359 feet) tall, and famous for Sri Prada. This roughly translates to ‘sacred footprint’, and is located near the summit. It is a 1.8 meter (5 ft 11 in) rock formation that is important to various religious.

In Buddhism, Sri Prada is said to be the footprint of the Buddha. Within Hinduism, it is said to be the footprint of Hanuman or Shiva. And in some Christian and Islam traditions it is known as Adam’s footprint, or that of St. Thomas. Sri Prada was first mentioned in the 4th century: there is note of it in the earliest Pali chronicle, known as the Deepawamsa.

Adam’s Peak is a holy site, thus making this one of the most important tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. Buddhists, Hindus, Christians and Muslims visit it as a pilgrimage site – especially Buddhists.

There are thousands of steps, and the journey takes a good few hours at least. April is peak pilgrimage season at Adam’s Peak! You can read about my climb up Adam’s Peak here.

Adam’s Peak is located in central Sri Lanka and makes a great addition to any Sri Lanka travel itinerary . It is in the province of Sabaragamuwa, around 140 km away from Colombo. The nearest city to the mountain is Hatton, around 31 km away.

Adam's Peak. tourist attractions in Sri Lanka

Getting to Adam’s Peak isn’t too difficult. You want to head to Hatton first and foremost, which you can do via train. It takes around 5-7 hours to reach Hatton via train from Colombo; there are various trains from Fort Station to Hatton Station, and they cost less than £5 GBP. Kandy to Hatton is a much shorter journey at around two-three hours; there are a couple of different routes, including overnight trains, and these journeys cost the equivalent of £1-2.

Once you’re in Hatton – an incredibly picturesque area with waterfalls , reservoirs, rivers and more – you can head to Adam’s Peak! It is best to arrange accommodation in Hatton for a day or so, as it is around 2 hours by car to the mountain itself. This costs around £25 in a taxi, of which there are plenty. Alternatively you can get the bus to the nearby village of Dalhousie, where you can stay before your hike if you want to be super close to the mountain and start your hike early. 

TIP: this bus ride takes around 1.5 hours, and will set you back less than a pound. For a slightly more authentic experience you can get a tuk-tuk which takes around an hour, although this costs in the region of £7-10 GBP.

As one of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka you will surely want to climb Adam’s Peak if you have the time.

The best time to climb Adam’s Peak is between December and May, as it can get pretty rainy in the area. Add to this thick mist and strong winds, and you don’t want to be scaling a mountain!

The climb takes around 5-7 hours, and is classed as ‘easy to moderate’ in terms of how difficult it is. Guides are readily available in the village of Dalhousie, costing around the £10 mark, though you likely won’t need one if you’re in a big group and climbing during the day.

Solo climbers and those planning night hikes might benefit from a guide, however! There are various guided tours available in case you would rather someone else take care of the whole thing, too.

Locals climb the peak on Saturdays and Sundays – this is when you will meet a lot of pilgrims. If you are hoping for a quieter hike, choose mid week. It is extremely cold at the top of Adam’s Peak, so take warm clothes or plenty of layers with you in preparation! And be warned: during off season, there are leeches around!

There are six routes used to climb Adam’s Peak. The most popular is the Hatton Route, from Dalhousie, which takes around three hours. It is 5 km (one way) and involves 5,500 uneven steps. The Ratnapura-Palabaddala route, often just referred to as Palabaddala, is another more popular route for climbing Adam’s Peak. The Kuruwita-Erathna trail is another well-used route, but the remaining three – Murraywatte, Mookuwatte and Malimboda – are very rarely used.

TIP: one of the best ways to climb Adam’s Peak is to ascend via the Hatton route, and descend via the Palabaddala route. That way you can a fantastic view both ways!

Many people start to climb Adam’s Peak at some point between 11pm and 2am, meaning they get to watch the sunrise at the peak surrounded by pilgrims and other travellers. Whilst the climb is hard work, the stunning view at the top makes this one of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

There are plenty of hotels, hostels and other accommodation options in Dalhousie for those planning to climb Adam’s Peak. For example, Green View Guest Inn offers free WiFi, 24 hour check-in, an Asian or American breakfast and a comfortable place to rest before and after hiking. There are budget and more luxury options, and most places available in the area have stunning mountain views!

You will also be able to find plenty of hostels in the area if you are on a backpacking trip. These don’t even have to be booked in advance a lot of the time, so if you decide you really want to climb up Adam’s Peak then you should be absolutely fine to do so.

Little Adam’s Peak

You likely may have heard of Adam’s Peak, in the Sabaragamuwa region of Sri Lanka. But you may not have heard of Little Adam’s Peak, four hours away in Ella. This is another one of the most popular natural tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

Little Adam’s Peak is a great alternative for those who don’t fancy climbing the larger volcano and is one of the best tourist attractions in Sri Lanka for adventure tourists .

As the name suggests, Little Adam’s Peak is a smaller version of Adam’s Peak (but just because it is smaller, doesn’t mean it isn’t one of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka!).

If the idea of a 5 hour hike doesn’t pique your interest, then Little Adam’s Peak is the one for you! It is a similar shape to the bigger mountain, but does not hold the sam religious significance – so there are less pilgrims, but more tourists and families willing to take on an easy trek.

Little Adam’s Peak is 1141 metres tall – that’s 3743 feet. This places it at just under half the height of the original Adam’s Peak, and the climb is much easier because of this. It generally takes around 45 minutes to an hour to reach the summit, via a zig zag path. You will be greeted with 360° views of the area when you get there- its is certainly one of the most impressive tourist attractions in Sri Lanka.

You can find Little Adam’s Peak in Ella, Sri Lanka. It is on Passara Road, and can be reached on foot from Ella itself in around half an hour to forty minutes. Head down via the Namunukula Road, and there is a sign-posted turn off to the right. Alternatively you can take a taxi, which only takes around 5-10 minutes but will cost in the region of £6-8 GBP.

Ella is a small town around 200 km east of the capital city of Colombo. It is in the Badulla District of the Uva Province, and is rich in bio-diversity.

Here are a few more details about the last of the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka that I am covering in this post…

When it comes to climbing Little Adam’s Peak, it’s fairly easy.

Make your way there from Ella, and you’ll find a large white buddha marking the start of the mountain route. First you will pass through tea plantations – lush green spaces full of women plucking the tea leaves. There are stunning waterfalls and paddy fields too, and the climb gradually gets a bit steeper.

However, it is so worth it when you reach the top. Turn your head in every direction and you’ll see rolling green fields, beautiful skies and stunning scenery. See if you can spot the incredible Ella’s Rock, too!

GOOD TO KNOW: you will find local women – mainly those who pick the tea – willing to pose for photos with you in exchange for money. Make of that what you will.

Due to being a fairly easy climb, Little Adam’s Peak is definitely something you can do as a family – people often take their small children with them, and it can be a lot of fun. It is one of the most fun tourist attractions in Sri Lanka!

There are plenty of different plants, birds and insects to see on the way, many that your children probably won’t have seen before, so it’s a great learning opportunity.

On top of that, it’s a great way to introduce them to hiking. You can organise a private tour , to make things even easier for everybody! That way you’ll get picked up and dropped off, so the only walking you’ll need to do is the hike itself…

It is worth getting up and climbing Little Adam’s Peak early in the morning. That way, you’ll be able to watch a beautiful sunrise when you get to the top! Stop for breakfast at 98 Acres Resort & Spa on your way back down, and you’ve started your day in Ella, Sri Lanka perfectly.

Staying in Ella to climb the peak

The best place to stay when you’re wanting to climb Little Adam’s Peak is, of course, the town of Ella itself. There are plenty of places to stay here, whether you want budget or luxury. Here are some recommendations!

Hangover Hostels Ella offers private rooms and dormitories. There is a terrace with an incredible view and plenty of outdoor seating, free WiFi, a smoking area and the option to hire bikes for your time in Ella. Little Adam’s Peak is 2.5 km away, and this hostel is great for a younger travelling crowd! There are big lockers in the dormitory rooms, and previous guests have praised the cleanliness of the hostel as well as how helpful the staff are.

The Onestar Homestay has views that will take your breath away. Every room has its own bathroom and hot tub, and there is free WiFi and parking available. Little Adam’s Peak is around 1.5 miles away, and you can fill up on a classic Asian breakfast before you head out. Vegetarian options are available too! Previous guests praise the view, the helpful staff, delicious food and how peaceful this accommodation is. This seems to be a favourite with families visiting Ella!

EKHO Ella is the place to stay if you like to travel in style. It is slightly further away from Little Adam’s Peak, but offers incredible views and luxurious amenities. There is free WiFi and parking, a sun terrace and garden, and a restaurant/bar area too. EKHO even has a heated jacuzzi outside – almost entirely surrounded by lush green leaves, and with hat beautiful mountain view. There are sun loungers and comfortable outdoor seating, perfect for relaxing after a hike up the mountain. Previous guests praise the view, the food and the cleanliness of this hotel.

As you can see, there are many wonderful tourist attractions in Sri Lanka to visit and Sri Lanka has something to offer everyone and every type of tourist . The tourist attractions in Sri Lanka are varied fun and fascinating. I know I certainly can’t wait to visit the tourist attractions in Sri Lanka again!

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33 most popular tourist places in sri lanka.

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Sri Lanka is a beautiful country with a rich history and culture. It is home to a variety of tourist attractions, from ancient ruins to stunning beaches. Whether you are interested in history, nature, or simply relaxation, you are sure to find something to enjoy in Sri Lanka.

Here is a list of some of the 33 most popular Sri Lanka tourist places, along with brief descriptions of attractions, how to reach these places, the best time to visit them, and where to stay.

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1. Adams Peak – The UNESCO World Heritage Site

Adam’s Peak is one of the most popular Sri Lanka tourist places. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is known for its stunning views, its religious significance, and its challenging climb.

Sri Lanka tourist places: Adams Peak – The UNESCO World Heritage Site

The peak is located in the central highlands of Sri Lanka and is 2,243 meters (7,359 feet) tall. It is believed by Buddhists, Hindus, and Muslims to be the place where Adam first set foot on Earth. The summit of the peak is marked by a large footprint, which is said to be the footprint of Buddha.

The climb to the summit of Adam’s Peak is a challenging one, but it is also a rewarding one. The views from the top are simply breathtaking. You can see for miles in every direction, and on a clear day, you can even see the Indian Ocean.

Best time to visit Adam’s Peak

The best time to climb Adam’s Peak is during the months of January and May. The weather is cooler during these months, and there are fewer crowds.

How to reach Adam’s Peak

To reach the base of Adam’s Peak, You can take a train from Colombo to Hatton, then a bus or auto to Dalhousie.

Where to stay

There are a few different places to stay near Adam’s Peak. The closest town is Dalhousie, which has a number of hotels and guesthouses. There are also a few campsites in the area.

Tourist attractions near Adam’s Peak

In addition to the summit, there are a few other tourist attractions near Adam’s Peak. The Peak Wilderness Sanctuary is a beautiful area of rainforest and mountains. Laxapana Falls is a 60-meter (200-foot) waterfall that is located near the base of the mountain.

Whether you are interested in its religious significance, its challenging climb, or its stunning views, Adam’s Peak, one of the most popular Sri Lanka tourist places, is a must-visit destination for any visitor to Sri Lanka.

2. Ella – A Picturesque Hill Town in Sri Lanka

Ella

Looking for the best Sri Lanka tourist places to visit? Ella is a popular tourist destination, known for its stunning scenery, its laid-back atmosphere, and its many hiking trails.

It is situated at an elevation of 1,041 meters (3,415 feet) above sea level. Some of the most popular hiking trails in Ella include the Nine Arch Bridge Hike, the Little Adam’s Peak Hike, and the Ravana Ella Falls Hike.

In addition to hiking, there are many other things to do in Ella. You can visit the Ravana Cave, go white water rafting, or take a train ride on the Ella-Kandy Railway.

Ella is a great place to relax and enjoy the beauty of Sri Lanka. The town has a number of hotels, guesthouses, and restaurants to choose from.

Best time to visit Ella

The best time to visit Ella is during the months of March to September, when the weather is dry and sunny.

How to reach Ella

Ella is located about 200 kilometers (120 miles) east of Colombo. You can reach Ella by train, bus, or car.

Where to stay in Ella

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and homestays in Ella to choose from. Some popular options include the Ella Rock Hotel, the Nine Arch Bridge Hotel, and the Chill Out Inn.

Tourist attractions in Ella

Nine Arch Bridge

Nine Arch 1

Relates reading : Nine Arches Bridge in Ella

Little Adam’s Peak

Little Adam's peak, Ella

Related reading : Little Adam’s Peak Mountain Trekking

Ravana Ella Falls

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Related reading: Ravana Falls

Ravana Cave

Ravana Cave

Ella-Kandy Railway

Demodara Nine Arch Bridge

Realated reading: Kandy to Ella Train Journey

3. Dambulla Cave Temple – A UNESCO World Heritage Site

Dambulla Cave Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Matale District of Sri Lanka. It is the largest and best-preserved cave temple complex in Sri Lanka, and is home to over 1,500 statues of Buddha, as well as paintings depicting scenes from the life of Buddha.

Dambulla Cave Temple Sri Lanka

The caves were originally created by natural forces, but were later converted into a temple complex by King Valagamba in the 1st century BC. The temple complex is spread over five caves, which are interconnected by a series of walkways.

The caves are decorated with beautiful murals and statues, dating from the 1st to 18th centuries. The most famous statue in the cave complex is the 14-meter-tall (46 ft) reclining Buddha, which is located in the largest cave.

Dambulla Cave Temple is a one of the popular tourist destination, and is one of the most visited religious sites in Sri Lanka tourist places list. The temple is open to visitors from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM, and the entrance fee is 1,500 Sri Lankan rupees (about $5 USD).

Best time to visit Dambulla Cave Temple

The best time to visit Dambulla Cave Temple is during the months of March to September, when the weather is dry and sunny.

How to reach Dambulla Cave Temple

Dambulla Cave Temple is located about 160 kilometers (100 miles) north of Kandy. You can reach the temple by bus, train, or car.

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and homestays in Dambulla to choose from. Some popular options include Dambulla Golden Temple Hotel, Dambulla Village Inn, and Dambulla Rest House.

Tourist attractions in Dambulla

  • Sigiriya Rock Fortress
  • Knuckles Mountain Range
  • Minneriya National Park

Related reading: Dambulla Cave Temple Sri Lanka

4. Arugam Bay – A Surfer’s Paradise in Sri Lanka

Arugam Bay Travel Guide - Lanka Tour Experts

The list of the best Sri Lanka tourist places is incomplete without the mention of Arugam Bay. It is a small town on the southeast coast of Sri Lanka, known for its beautiful beaches, its laid-back atmosphere, and its world-class surfing. It is one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places.

The bay is located in a sheltered area, which makes it a great place to surf, even during the monsoon season. The waves are known for being consistent and powerful, making Arugam Bay a popular destination for both experienced and beginner surfers.

In addition to surfing, there are many other things to do in Arugam Bay. You can go for a hike in the surrounding hills, visit the local temples, or relax on one of the many beautiful beaches.

Arugam Bay is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, making it a sought-after destination among Sri Lanka tourist places. The town has a number of hotels, guesthouses, and restaurants to choose from.

Best time to visit Arugam Bay

The best time to visit Arugam Bay is during the months of May to September , when the weather is dry and sunny.

How to reach Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay is located about 320 kilometers (200 miles) east of Colombo. You can reach Arugam Bay by bus, train, or car.

Where to stay Arugam Bay

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and homestays in Arugam Bay to choose from. Some popular options include the Arugam Bay Beach Inn, the Happy Turtle Inn, and the Arugam Bay Surf Resort.

Tourist attractions in Arugam Bay

  • Arugam Bay Beach
  • Peanut Farm Beach
  • Elephant Point
  • Kumana National Park

Related reading: Arugam Bay Travel Guide: A Paradise for Beach Lovers

5. Galle – A UNESCO World Heritage City in Sri Lanka

Magnificent Galle Fort at sunset, epitomizing Sri Lanka's captivating history and architectural splendor - Galle Fort Tour Sri Lanka

Galle is a city on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka, known for its well-preserved 16th-century Dutch fort, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places.

The fort was built by the Portuguese in the 16th century, and was later expanded by the Dutch. The fort is surrounded by a moat and is home to a number of churches, mosques, and temples.

Inside the fort, you can find narrow streets, old colonial buildings, and a number of shops and restaurants. There are also a number of forts and museums to visit, including the National Museum of Galle and the Maritime Museum.

Galle is a great place to relax and explore, making it a sought-after destination among Sri Lanka tourist places. The city has a number of beaches, including the Galle Lighthouse Beach and the Dutch Bay Beach. You can also go for a walk along the Galle Fort ramparts or take a boat trip to see the surrounding islands.

Best time to visit Galle

The best time to visit Galle is during the months of March to September, when the weather is dry and sunny.

How to reach Galle

Galle is located about 120 kilometers (75 miles) south of Colombo. You can reach Galle by train, bus, or car.

Where to stay in Galle

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and homestays in Galle to choose from. Some popular options include the Amangalla Hotel, the Galle Fort Hotel, and the The Lighthouse Hotel.

Tourist attractions in Galle

galle dutch fort

National Museum of Galle

National Museum of Galle

Maritime Museum

Maritime Museum Galle

Galle Lighthouse Beach

Galle Lighthouse Beach

Dutch Bay Beach

Dutch Bay Beach Galle

6. Nuwara Eliya – A Hill Station in Sri Lanka

Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka

The next destination is one of the most beautiful Sri Lanka tourist places and is known as Nuwara Eliya. Nuwara Eliya is a hill station in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. It is known for its cool temperatures, its scenic beauty, and its tea plantations.

Nuwara Eliya was founded by the British in the 19th century as a summer retreat. The town is surrounded by mountains, and is at an altitude of 1,868 meters (6,128 feet) above sea level.

Nuwara Eliya is one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places and is known for its many attractions, including:

The Blue Mountain Railway

This scenic train journey takes you from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya, and offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains.

The Gregory Lake

The Ultimate Sri Lanka Itinerary for 2 Weeks!

This beautiful lake is located in the heart of Nuwara Eliya, and is a popular spot for boating and fishing.

The Hakgala Botanical Gardens

These gardens are home to a wide variety of tropical plants, and are a great place to go for a walk or a picnic.

The Lovers’ Leap

This viewpoint offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains, and is a popular spot for couples.

Best time to visit: The best time to visit Nuwara Eliya is during the months of December to March, when the weather is cool and dry.

How to reach Nuwara Eliya

Nuwara Eliya is located about 190 kilometers (118 miles) northeast of Colombo. You can reach Nuwara Eliya by train, bus, or car.

Where to stay in Nuwara Eliya

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and homestays in Nuwara Eliya to choose from. Some popular options include the Hill Club, the Queensberry Hotel, and the Grand Hotel.

Related reading: The 12 Best Hotels in Nuwara Eliya

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Our Sri Lanka tour packages offer the perfect way to explore this beautiful island. We have a variety of packages to choose from, so you can find one that fits your interests and budget. We can also create a custom itinerary for you.

7. Anuradhapura – A UNESCO World Heritage Site in Sri Lanka

Another one of the most popular Sri Lanka tourist places is Anuradhapura. It was the capital of Sri Lanka for over 1,000 years, from the 4th century BC to the 11th century AD.

Abhayagiriya in Anuradhapura - Sri Lanka Economy Tours

Anuradhapura is one of the most important archaeological sites in Sri Lanka, and is home to a number of well-preserved ruins, including:

Jaya Sri Mahabodhi Temple

This is the oldest Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka, and is said to have been built by King Devanampiya Tissa in the 3rd century BC.

The Ruwanwelisaya

Ruwanweliseya Stupa Sri Lanka Economy Tours

This is the largest stupa in Sri Lanka, and was built by King Dutugemunu in the 2nd century BC.

Read more: Tour to Ruwanweliseya Stupa

The Jetavana Monastery

The Jetavana Monastery

This was once the largest monastery in the world, and is now home to a number of ruins, including a large pond and a number of caves.

Read more: Jetavanaramaya Stupa: The Wonder of Ancient Sri Lanka

The Thuparama

This is the oldest stupa in Anuradhapura, and was built by King Asoka in the 3rd century BC.

Anuradhapura is a popular tourist destination, and is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Sri Lanka. The city is also home to a number of temples, monasteries, and museums.

Best time to visit Anuradhapura

The best time to visit Anuradhapura is during the months of January to March, when the weather is cool and dry.

How to reach Anuradhapura

Anuradhapura is located about 212 kilometers (132 miles) north of Colombo. You can reach Anuradhapura by train, bus, or car.

Where to stay in ANuradhapura

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and homestays in Anuradhapura to choose from. Some popular options include the Anuradhapura Hotel, the Jetwing Hotel, and the Tamarind Tree Hotel.

8. Tissamaharama: A Photographer’s Paradise

Tissamaharama Stupa

Tissamaharama is a town in the Hambantota District of the Southern Province of Sri Lanka. It is located on the east coast of the island, about 88 kilometers (55 miles) from Ella. The town has a population of about 100,000 people.

It is one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places on our list, known for its beautiful beaches, lush vegetation, and numerous historical sites. The town is also home to several temples, mosques, and churches.

For Photography Enthusiasts

Tissamaharama is a great place for photography enthusiasts. The town has stunning scenery, including the Tissa Wewa Lake, a large artificial lake that is home to a variety of birds.

There are also a number of stupas in the area, including the Yatala Vehera Stupa, which is one of the most important Buddhist sites in Sri Lanka.

Tissa Lake

Best Time to Visit Tissamaharama

The best time to visit Tissamaharama is during the winter (December-February), when the weather is warm and sunny. The monsoon season runs from May to September, so it is best to avoid visiting during this time.

How to reach Tissamaharama

Tissamaharama is easily accessible by road, rail, and air. There are buses from Ella, Matara, and Galle to Tissa. The town is also served by a train station and an airport.

Where to stay in Tissamaharama

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts in Tissamaharama to choose from. Some popular options include the Tissamaharama Resort, the Hotel Tamarind Tree, and the Yatala Lakeside Resort.

Tourist Attractions in Tissamaharama

In addition to the Tissa Wewa Lake and the Yatala Vehera Stupa, other popular tourist attractions in Tissamaharama include:

  • The Yala National Park, a wildlife sanctuary home to a variety of animals, including elephants, water buffalo, and crocodiles.
  • The Kataragama Temple, a Hindu temple dedicated to the god Kataragama.
  • The Tissamaharama Raja Maha Vihar, a Buddhist temple complex that is one of the oldest in Sri Lanka.

9. Yala National Park: A Safari Destination with a Variety of Wildlife and Birds

Yala National Park is one of the most popular national parks in Sri Lanka. It is located in the southeastern part of the country, in the Hambantota District. The park is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including elephants, leopards, sloth bears, water buffalo, crocodiles, and over 200 species of birds.

Yala National Park Safari Sri Lanka Economy Tours

Yala National Park is a one of the best tourist places in Sri Lanka , and is open to visitors year-round. However, the best time to visit is during the dry season, which runs from December to April.

There are a number of things to do in Yala National Park, including:

Game drives

Game drives are the most popular way to see the wildlife in Yala National Park. You can go on a game drive by jeep, van, or even on foot.

Bird watching

Yala National Park is home to over 200 species of birds, making it a great place for bird watching.

There are a number of hiking trails in Yala National Park, ranging from easy to challenging.

You can also camp in Yala National Park, if you want to experience the park overnight.

Yala National Park is a great place to see the wildlife of Sri Lanka. If you are a nature lover or a wildlife enthusiast, you should definitely visit Yala National Park.

Sri Lanka in September: Weather, Places, Tips and More

Here are some tips for visiting Yala National Park:

  • Book your game drive in advance: Game drives are very popular in Yala National Park, so it is important to book yours in advance. You can book your game drive through a tour operator or directly with the park.
  • Dress appropriately: Make sure to dress appropriately for a game drive, which means wearing long pants, closed-toe shoes, and a hat. You may also want to bring insect repellent.
  • Bring water and snacks: It is important to bring water and snacks with you on your game drive, as there are no restaurants or shops inside the park.
  • Be respectful of the wildlife: Remember that you are visiting the animals’ home, so be respectful of them and their space. Do not get too close to the animals, and do not feed them.

10. Horton Plains National Park – A Natural Wonder of Sri Lanka

Horton plains national park

Horton Plains National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the central highlands of Sri Lanka. The park is known for its stunning scenery, including the World’s End, a sheer cliff that drops over 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) to the plains below.

The park is also home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, leopards, sloth bears, water buffalo, and over 200 species of birds. Horton Plains is one of the best Sri Lanka tourist places.

A Hike to Remember

The most popular activity in Horton Plains National Park is hiking. The most popular hike is to the World’s End, which is a 4-kilometer (2.5-mile) round-trip hike that takes about 4 hours to complete. The hike is challenging but rewarding, and the views from the top of the World’s End are simply stunning.

Other Attractions

In addition to the World’s End, there are a number of other attractions in Horton Plains National Park, including:

Baker's Falls

  • Baker’s Falls, a beautiful waterfall that plunges over 200 meters (660 feet)
  • The Knuckles Mountain Range, a stunning mountain range that is home to a variety of wildlife
  • The Far Inn Hunting Lodge, a former hunting lodge that now serves as a cafe and visitor center
  • The Horton Plains Visitor Centre, which has exhibits on the park’s history and ecology

World's End Horton Plains

Best Time to Visit Horton Plains

The best time to visit Horton Plains National Park is during the dry season, which runs from December to April. However, the park is open year-round.

How to Reach Horton Plains

Horton Plains National Park is easily accessible by road from Nuwara Eliya. There are also buses and jeeps that can take you to the park.

Where to Stay near Horton Plains

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and campsites in Nuwara Eliya that offer easy access to Horton Plains National Park.

Tourist Attractions in Horton Plains

In addition to the World’s End, other popular tourist attractions in the area include:

  • Hakgala Botanical Gardens, a beautiful garden with a wide variety of plants
  • Bambarakanda Falls, the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka
  • Ohiya, a charming town with a colonial past

Related reading: Horton Plains National Park

11. Sinharaja Forest Reserve: A UNESCO World Heritage Site

Sinharaja Forest Reserve

Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the south-west of Sri Lanka. It is one of the last remaining areas of lowland rainforest in Sri Lanka, and is home to a wide variety of plants and animals.

The forest is a popular Sri Lankan tourist destination for eco-tourism, and offers a variety of activities, including hiking, bird watching, and wildlife viewing.

The Rainforest

White Monkey Sinharaja

The Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a lowland rainforest, which means that it is located at a low altitude and receives a lot of rainfall. The forest is home to a wide variety of plants, including trees, shrubs, and ferns. Some of the most common trees in the forest include the jak tree, the teak tree, and the ebony tree.

The forest is also home to a wide variety of animals, including elephants, leopards, sloth bears, monkeys, and birds. Some of the most common birds in the forest include the blue magpie, the Sri Lanka junglefowl, and the purple-faced langur.

Eco-Tourism

Sinharaja Forest

There are a number of different ways to experience the forest, including hiking, bird watching, and wildlife viewing.

Hiking is one of the most popular activities in the forest. There are a number of different trails to choose from, ranging from easy to challenging. Bird watching is another popular activity in the forest.

There are over 400 species of birds in the forest, making it a great place to see a variety of birds. Wildlife viewing is also possible in the forest. Elephants, leopards and monkeys are all commonly seen in the forest.

Best Time to Visit Sinharaja

The best time to visit Sinharaja Forest Reserve is during the dry season, which runs from December to April. However, the forest is open year-round.

How to Reach SInharaja

Sinharaja Forest Reserve is located in the south-west of Sri Lanka. The nearest town is Ratnapura, which is about 60 kilometers (37 miles) from the reserve. There are buses and jeeps that can take you to the reserve from Ratnapura.

Where to Stay in Sinharaja

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and campsites in Ratnapura and the surrounding area that offer easy access to Sinharaja Forest Reserve.

12. Unawatuna Beach: A Tropical Paradise

Unawatuna Beach, Galle

Unawatuna Beach is a beautiful beach located in the south-west of Sri Lanka. It is a popular tourist destination, known for its white sand, clear waters, and laid-back atmosphere.

The beach, one of the Sri Lanka tourist places, is a great place to relax and soak up the sun. There are also a number of activities available, such as swimming, surfing, and snorkeling.

Unawatuna Beach is a long, sandy beach with clear, blue waters. The beach is lined with palm trees and casuarina trees, which provide shade and a relaxing atmosphere.

The water is calm and shallow, making it a great place for swimming and snorkeling. There are also a number of surf schools in the area that offer lessons for all levels.

Related reading: Unawatuna Beach, Galle, Sri Lanka

The Surrounding Area

Unawatuna Beach is located in a beautiful area. The surrounding area is dotted with fishing villages, temples, and coconut groves. There are also a number of hills and cliffs that offer stunning views of the beach and the surrounding area.

Things to Do in Unawatuna

In addition to swimming and snorkeling, there are a number of other things to do in Unawatuna Beach. These include:

Stand-up paddleboarding, Unawatuna

  • Surfing: There are a number of surf schools in the area that offer lessons for all levels.
  • Stand-up paddleboarding: Stand-up paddleboarding is a great way to explore the beach and the surrounding area.
  • Boat tours: There are a number of boat tours that offer the opportunity to see dolphins, whales, and other marine life.
  • Visit the local villages: There are a number of fishing villages in the area that are worth visiting.
  • Hike to the top of the cliffs: The cliffs that surround Unawatuna Beach offer stunning views of the beach and the surrounding area.

Best Time to Visit Unawatuna

The best time to visit Unawatuna Beach is during the dry season, which runs from November to April. However, the beach is open year-round.

How to Reach Unawatuna

Unawatuna Beach is located in the south-west of Sri Lanka. The nearest town is Galle, which is about 10 kilometers (6 miles) from the beach. There are buses and trains that can take you to Galle from Colombo. From Galle, you can take a taxi or tuk-tuk to Unawatuna Beach.

Related reading: Galle Dutch Fort Tour

Where to Stay Unawatuna

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts in Unawatuna Beach to choose from. Some popular options include the Unawatuna Bay Hotel, the Jetwing Sea Breeze, and the Amaya Beach.

Pro tip: 12 Budget Hotels in Unawatuna, Galle

13. Temple of the Tooth: A Sacred Buddhist Shrine

Temple of the Tooth Sri Lanka Economy Tours

The Temple of the Tooth (Sri Dalada Maligawa) is a Buddhist temple in Kandy, Sri Lanka. It is one of the most important Buddhist temples in the world, as it houses the relic of the tooth of the Buddha.

The temple was built in the 15th century by King Parakramabahu VI. The tooth relic is believed to have been brought to Sri Lanka from India in the 4th century by Princess Hemamala and Prince Dantha, the children of King Ashoka.

The temple is a popular pilgrimage site for Buddhists from all over the world. The relic is only displayed to the public on special occasions, such as on Vesak Day, the Buddha’s birthday.

The temple is a beautiful example of Sri Lankan architecture. It is a complex of buildings, including the main shrine, a library, and a museum. The main shrine is a large, gold-plated dagoba (stupa) that houses the tooth relic.

The temple, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Sri Lanka tourist places, is a must-visit for anyone interested in Buddhism or Sri Lankan culture.

Temple of the Tooth Sri Lanka Economy Tours

Best Time to Visit Temple of the Tooth

The best time to visit the Temple of the Tooth is during the dry season, which runs from December to April. However, the temple is open year-round.

How to Reach Temple of the Tooth

The Temple of the Tooth is located in Kandy, Sri Lanka. The nearest airport is the Bandaranaike International Airport, which is about 100 kilometers (62 miles) from Kandy. There are buses and trains that can take you to Kandy from Colombo. From Kandy, you can walk to the temple or take a tuk-tuk.

Where to Stay

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts in Kandy to choose from. Some popular options include the Kandy Lake Hotel, the Jetwing Lakeside, and the Amangalla.

More information : Temple of Tooth Kandy

14. Gal Viharaya: A Rock Temple of Stunning Sculpture

Gal Viharaya is a rock temple located in Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka. It is one of the most important archaeological sites in Sri Lanka , and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The temple was built in the 12th century by King Parakramabahu I. It is made up of four large statues of Buddha, carved out of a single granite rock. The statues are seated in the bhumisparsha mudra, which is a gesture of touching the earth.

The Largest Statue

Gal Vihara Polonnaruwa

The largest statue is 18 meters (60 feet) tall, and is the largest standing Buddha statue in Sri Lanka. It is known as the Mahachaitya. The statue is carved in a very realistic style, and is considered to be one of the finest examples of Sri Lankan sculpture.

The Other Statues

The other three statues are 12 meters (40 feet), 10 meters (33 feet), and 8 meters (26 feet) tall. They are known as the Gal Viharaya Buddhas. The statues are carved in a variety of poses, including seated, reclining, and standing.

The Setting

The temple is located in a beautiful setting, surrounded by lush vegetation. The atmosphere is peaceful and serene, and it is a great place to relax and meditate.

How to Visit Gal Viharaya

Gal Viharaya is open to the public, and there is no admission fee. The temple is located in Polonnaruwa, which is about 160 kilometers (100 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Polonnaruwa from Colombo. From Polonnaruwa, you can walk to the temple or take a tuk-tuk.

Read more >> Gal Vihara in Polonnaruwa

15. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage: A Home for the Needy

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage - 3 day tour Sri Lanka

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is a 25-acre (10-hectare) wildlife sanctuary located in Kegalle District, Sri Lanka. It is home to over 60 elephants, including orphaned baby elephants, injured elephants, and those who have been rescued from the wild.

The orphanage was founded in 1975 by the Sri Lankan Department of Wildlife Conservation. The goal of the orphanage is to provide a safe and loving home for elephants who cannot survive in the wild.

The elephants at Pinnawala are cared for by a dedicated team of mahouts (elephant keepers). The mahouts feed the elephants, bathe them, and train them. They also provide the elephants with medical care.

The elephants at Pinnawala, one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places, are a popular tourist attraction. Visitors can watch the elephants being fed and bathed, and they can also take a ride on an elephant. The proceeds from tourism help to support the orphanage.

How to Visit Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is open to the public from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm daily. The entrance fee is 1,500 Sri Lankan rupees (about $5 USD) for adults and 750 Sri Lankan rupees (about $2.5 USD) for children.

The orphanage is located about 120 kilometers (75 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Pinnawala from Colombo. From Pinnawala, you can walk to the orphanage or take a tuk-tuk.

Read more about: Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

16. Mirissa Whale Watching: A Chance to See the Giants of the Ocean

whale watching mirissa Sri Lanka 8 Days Tour Package

Mirissa is a small town on the south coast of Sri Lanka, which is one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places, famous for whale watching.

The best time to go whale watching in Mirissa , one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places, is during the months of December to April when the waters are calm and the whales are more active.

The most common whales seen in Mirissa are the blue whale, the sperm whale, and the humpback whale. Blue whales are the largest animals on Earth, and they can grow up to 100 feet long.

Sperm whales are the largest predators on Earth, and they can grow up to 60 feet long. Humpback whales are known for their acrobatic displays, and they can breach the water up to 40 feet high.

Whale watching tours in Mirissa typically depart in the morning and last for about 3 hours. The boats travel out to sea where the whales are most likely to be found.

Once a whale is spotted, the boat will slowly approach it so that you can get a good view.

Whale watching is a great way to see these amazing creatures in their natural habitat. It is also a great way to learn about whales and their importance to the ocean ecosystem.

Here are some tips for whale watching in Mirissa:

  • Go during the months of December to April when the waters are calm and the whales are more active.
  • Choose a reputable tour operator that has a good safety record.
  • Bring binoculars or a camera with a zoom lens so you can get a better view of the whales.
  • Be respectful of the whales and do not get too close to them.

17. Trincomalee: A Historical and Religious City

Trincomalee is a city on the northeast coast of Sri Lanka, which is one of the most beautiful Sri Lanka tourist places. It is a major port city and a popular tourist destination, boasting a long and rich history. Trincomalee was once an important port for the ancient kingdoms of Sri Lanka and also served as a significant center during the Portuguese and Dutch colonial rule.

Nilaweli Beach

Trincomalee is home to a number of important religious sites, including the Koneswaram Temple, one of the five Iswarams (temples dedicated to Shiva) in Sri Lanka. The Koneswaram Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Trincomalee is also a popular destination for whale watching and other water sports. The city is located on a beautiful bay, and the surrounding waters are home to a variety of marine life.

Comprehensive Guide to the Best Water Sports in Sri Lanka

Things to Do in Trincomalee

  • Visit the Koneswaram Temple: This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most important religious sites in Sri Lanka.
  • Go whale watching: Trincomalee is a great place to go whale watching. The best time to go is during the months of December to April.
  • Visit the Dutch Fort: This 17th-century fort is a popular tourist destination. It offers stunning views of the city and the surrounding area.
  • Relax on the beach: Trincomalee has a number of beautiful beaches, perfect for relaxing and swimming.
  • Visit the National Museum: This museum houses a collection of artifacts from Sri Lanka’s history.

How to Get to Trincomalee

Trincomalee is located about 250 kilometers (155 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Trincomalee from Colombo. There is also an airport in Trincomalee, but it only serves a limited number of flights.

Where to Stay in Trincomalee

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts in Trincomalee to choose from. Some popular options include the Trincomalee Bay Hotel, the Hotel Lighthouse, and the Amaya Lake.

Related reading: Nilaveli Beach, Trincomalee

18. Colombo: The Commercial Capital of Sri Lanka

Colombo is the largest city in Sri Lanka and is the country’s commercial capital. It is located on the west coast of the island, and is a major port city.

Sri Lanka Tour Packages from Colombo

Colombo has a long and rich history. It was once the capital of the ancient kingdom of Kotte, and was later ruled by the Portuguese, Dutch, and British.

Today, Colombo is a modern city with a mix of old and new. The city is home to a number of historical landmarks, including the Galle Face Green , the Old Fort, and the National Museum.

Colombo is also a major shopping destination. The city has a number of malls, boutiques, and markets. Colombo is also a one of the most popular Sri Lankan tourist places, and is home to a number of hotels, restaurants, and bars.

Things to Do in Colombo

  • Visit the Galle Face Green: This waterfront park is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.
  • Explore the Old Fort: This 16th-century fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Go shopping: Colombo has a number of malls, boutiques, and markets.
  • Visit the Vihara Maha Devi Temple: This Buddhist temple is one of the oldest in Colombo.
  • Take a walk through Pettah: This bustling market is a great place to experience the local culture.
  • Relax on the beach: Colombo has a number of beautiful beaches, perfect for relaxing and swimming.

Read more : Exploring the 16 Best Tourist Places in Colombo

How to Reach Colombo

Colombo is the main international gateway to Sri Lanka. There are a number of airlines that fly to Colombo, including SriLankan Airlines, Emirates, and Qatar Airways.

Where to Stay in Colombo

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts in Colombo to choose from. Some popular options include the Shangri-La Hotel, the Cinnamon Grand, and the Taj Samudra.

Snorkeling in Bentota

19. Udawalawe National Park: A Home to Elephants

Udawalawe National Park is a national park in Sri Lanka. It is located in the Central Province, about 160 kilometers (100 miles) from Colombo. The park is home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, water buffalo, deer, monkeys, and crocodiles.

Elephants in Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe National Park was established in 1972. The park is named after the Udawalawe Reservoir, which is located in the park. The reservoir is a major source of water for the park and for the surrounding area.

The park is a on of the popular Sri Lankan tourist places, and is especially popular for elephant watching. Elephants are the most common animal in the park, and there are over 500 elephants that live in the park.

Things to Do in Udawalawe National Park

  • Elephant watching: This is the most popular activity in Udawalawe National Park. Elephants are the most common animal in the park, and there are over 500 elephants that live in the park.
  • Bird watching: Udawalawe National Park is home to over 200 species of birds. Some of the most common birds in the park include storks, eagles, and pelicans.
  • Boating: You can take a boat ride on the Udawalawe Reservoir. This is a great way to see the wildlife in the park, including elephants, crocodiles, and birds.
  • Hiking: There are a number of hiking trails in Udawalawe National Park. These trails offer stunning views of the park and the surrounding area.

How to Get to Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe National Park is located about 160 kilometers (100 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Udawalawe National Park from Colombo.

Where to Stay in Udawalawe National Park

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts in Udawalawe National Park to choose from. Some popular options include the Udawalawe Safari Lodge, the Udawalawe Elephant Camp, and the Udawalawe Lake Hotel.

Read more: Udawalawe National Park

20. Peradeniya Botanical Garden: A Tropical Haven

Peradeniya Botanical Garden is a botanical garden in Sri Lanka. It is located in the Kandy district, about 6 kilometers (4 miles) from the city of Kandy.

The garden is one of the most popular tourist places in Sri Lanka, and is known for its beautiful gardens, its large collection of plants, and its historical significance.

Royal Botanical Garden Peradeniya Kandy

Peradeniya Botanical Garden was founded in 1821 by the British colonial government. The garden was originally used as a research station for the study of tropical plants. However, it was soon opened to the public and became a popular tourist destination.

The garden is home to a large collection of plants from all over the world. There are over 10,000 different species of plants in the garden, including orchids, cacti, ferns, and trees. The garden also has a number of historical buildings, including the Queen’s Cottage, which was built in 1867 for Queen Victoria’s visit to Sri Lanka.

Things to Do in Peradeniya Botanical Garden

  • Explore the gardens: The gardens are a beautiful place to walk around and explore. There are a number of different paths to choose from, and you can easily spend a few hours wandering around the gardens.
  • Visit the orchid house: The orchid house is home to a large collection of orchids. There are over 1,000 different species of orchids in the house, and it is a great place to see these beautiful flowers.
  • Visit the cacti and succulent garden: The cacti and succulent garden is home to a large collection of cacti and succulents. There are over 1,000 different species of cacti and succulents in the garden, and it is a great place to see these unique plants.
  • Visit the Palm Grove: The Palm Grove is home to a large collection of palm trees. There are over 100 different species of palm trees in the grove, and it is a great place to see these majestic trees.

How to Reach Peradeniya Botanical Garden

Peradeniya Botanical Garden is located about 6 kilometers (4 miles) from the city of Kandy. There are buses and trains that can take you to Peradeniya Botanical Garden from Kandy.

Where to Stay in Peradeniya Botanical Garden

Suggested reading: Peradeniya Royal Botanical Garden

21. Bentota Beach: A Serene Coastal Escape

Bentota Beach is a beach located in Sri Lanka. It is a popular tourist destination, known for its beautiful white sand, clear waters, and relaxed atmosphere.

Sun bathing Bentota Beach

The beach is located in the south-west of Sri Lanka, about 65 kilometers (40 miles) from Colombo. It is a long, sandy beach with clear, blue waters. The beach is backed by palm trees and casuarina trees, which provide shade and a relaxing atmosphere.

Bentota Beach is a popular destination for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports. There are a number of hotels, resorts, and restaurants located along the beach, making it a great place to stay.

Things to Do in Bentota Beach

  • Swimming: The clear waters of Bentota Beach are perfect for swimming. The beach is also a great place to go for a swim early in the morning or late in the evening, when the sun is not as hot.
  • Sunbathing: The white sand of Bentota Beach is perfect for sunbathing. You can relax on the beach and soak up the sun, or you can rent a beach chair and umbrella.
  • Water sports: There are a number of water sports that you can enjoy in Bentota Beach, including surfing, windsurfing, and jet skiing. There are also a number of boat tours that you can take, which will allow you to explore the surrounding area.
  • Visit the Bentota River: The Bentota River is located near Bentota Beach. You can take a boat ride on the river, or you can go for a walk along the riverbank. The river is a great place to see wildlife, including monkeys, crocodiles, and birds.
  • Visit the Bentota Lighthouse: The Bentota Lighthouse is located at the southern end of Bentota Beach. It is a short walk from the beach, and it offers stunning views of the beach and the surrounding area.

Water Sports in Bentota

How to Reach Bentota

Bentota Beach is located about 65 kilometers (40 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Bentota Beach from Colombo. There are also a number of taxis and tuk-tuks that can take you to the beach.

Where to Stay in Bentota

There are a number of hotels, resorts, and guesthouses located in Bentota Beach. Some popular options include the Cinnamon Bentota Beach, the Jetwing Sea Breeze, and the The Amangalla.

22. Jaffna: A Cultural and Historical Gem

Jaffna, Sri Lanka

Jaffna is a city in northern Sri Lanka. It is the capital of the Northern Province and is the largest city in the north of the country. Jaffna is a major cultural and historical center, and is home to a number of important temples, mosques, and churches.

The city was founded by the Portuguese in the 16th century and was later ruled by the Dutch and the British. Jaffna has a rich history and culture, and is a popular tourist destination.

Things to Do in Jaffna

Visit the Jaffna Fort

Jaffna Fort

The Jaffna Fort is a 16th-century fort that is one of the most important historical sites in Sri Lanka. The fort is located in the heart of Jaffna and is a popular tourist destination.

Explore the Jaffna temples

Jaffna Hindu Temple

Jaffna is home to a number of important temples, including the Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil, the Thiruketheeswaram Temple, and the Vallipuram Sivan Temple. These temples are all worth visiting and offer a glimpse into the rich Hindu culture of Jaffna.

Visit the Jaffna mosques

Jaffna is also home to a number of important mosques, including the Grand Mosque of Jaffna and the Keerimalai Mosque. These mosques are all worth visiting and offer a glimpse into the rich Muslim culture of Jaffna.

Visit the Jaffna churches

Jaffna is also home to a number of important churches, including the St. Mary’s Cathedral and the Church of Our Lady of Madhu. These churches are all worth visiting and offer a glimpse into the rich Christian culture of Jaffna.

Learn about Jaffna’s history

Jaffna public library

There are a number of museums in Jaffna that offer insights into the city’s rich history. These museums include the Jaffna Museum, the Jaffna Public Library, and the Jaffna Kachcheri.

Enjoy the local food

Jaffna is home to a number of delicious restaurants that serve traditional Sri Lankan cuisine. Be sure to try some of the local favorites, such as string hoppers, kottu roti, and lamprais.

How to Reach Jaffna

Jaffna is located about 400 kilometers (250 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Jaffna from Colombo. There are also a number of flights that operate from Colombo to Jaffna.

Where to Stay in Jaffna

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located in Jaffna. Some popular options include the Jaffna Fort Hotel, the Lighthouse Hotel, and the Jetwing Jaffna.

23. Hiriketiya Beach: A Hidden Gem in Sri Lanka

Hiriketiya Beach, Sri Lanka

Hiriketiya Beach is a beach located in Sri Lanka. It is a popular tourist destination, known for its beautiful white sand, clear waters, and relaxed atmosphere.

The beach is located in the south-west of Sri Lanka, about 150 kilometers (93 miles) from Colombo. It is a long, sandy beach with clear, blue waters. The beach is backed by palm trees and casuarina trees, which provide shade and a relaxing atmosphere.

Hiriketiya Beach is a popular destination for surfing, as it is known for its consistent waves. The beach is also a great place to go for a swim, sunbathe, or simply relax and enjoy the scenery.

Things to Do in Hiriketiya Beach

Surfing : Hiriketiya Beach is a popular destination for surfing, as it is known for its consistent waves. There are a number of surf schools and camps located in Hiriketiya Beach, which offer lessons for all levels of surfers.

Swimming: The clear waters of Hiriketiya Beach are perfect for swimming. The beach is also a great place to go for a swim early in the morning or late in the evening, when the sun is not as hot.

Hiriketiya beach swimming

Sunbathing: The white sand of Hiriketiya Beach is perfect for sunbathing. You can relax on the beach and soak up the sun, or you can rent a beach chair and umbrella.

Visit the Hiriketiya Lighthouse: The Hiriketiya Lighthouse is located at the southern end of Hiriketiya Beach. It is a short walk from the beach, and it offers stunning views of the beach and the surrounding area.

Go on a boat tour: There are a number of boat tours that you can take from Hiriketiya Beach. These tours will allow you to explore the surrounding area, including the mangroves, the lagoon, and the nearby islands.

How to Reach Hiriketiya Beach

Hiriketiya Beach is located about 150 kilometers (93 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Hiriketiya Beach from Colombo. There are also a number of taxis and tuk-tuks that can take you to the beach.

Where to Stay in Hiriketiya

There are a number of hotels, resorts, and guesthouses located in Hiriketiya Beach. Some popular options include the Hiriketiya Beach Resort, the Hiriketiya Bay Hotel, and the Hiriketiya Surf Inn.

24. Sigiriya Lion Rock: A Majestic Rock Fortress

Sigiriya Sri Lanka the Lion Rock Fortress

Sigiriya Lion Rock is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Sri Lanka. It is a massive rock that rises 200 meters (660 feet) above the surrounding plains. The rock is topped by the ruins of a palace and a fortress that were built by King Kashyapa in the 5th century AD.

The rock is named after the lion’s head that was carved into the side of the rock. The lion’s head was destroyed by an earthquake in the 14th century, but the ruins of the palace and the fortress remain.

Sigiriya Lion Rock is a one of the popular tourist places in Sri Lanka. Visitors can climb the stairs to the top of the rock and explore the ruins of the palace and the fortress. The views from the top of the rock are spectacular.

Things to Do in Sigiriya

Climb the Lion’s Rock: This is the most popular activity in Sigiriya. The climb is challenging, but the views from the top are worth it.

Sigiriya Sri Lanka the Lion Rock Fortress

Explore the ruins of the palace and the fortress: The ruins of the palace and the fortress are fascinating. You can wander around the ruins and imagine what life was like in the 5th century AD.

Visit the Mirror Wall: The Mirror Wall is a polished slab of rock that was used by the king to admire himself. The wall is still in good condition and is a popular spot for taking photos.

Visit the gardens: The gardens at Sigiriya are beautiful. There are fountains, ponds, and walkways that wind through the gardens.

How to Get to Sigiriya Lion Rock

Sigiriya Lion Rock is located about 160 kilometers (100 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Sigiriya Lion Rock from Colombo. There are also a number of taxis and tuk-tuks that can take you to the rock.

Where to Stay in Sigiriya

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located in Sigiriya. Some popular options include the Sigiriya Hotel, the Kandalama Hotel, and the Heritance Kandalama.

Suggested reading: Sigiriya Lion Rock Fortress

25. Pigeon Island National Park: A Marine Park in Sri Lanka

Pigeon Island National Park is a marine park located in Sri Lanka. It is a small island off the coast of Nilaveli, in the Eastern Province. The park is home to a variety of marine life, including coral reefs, fish, and turtles.

Pigeon Island Trincomalee

The island is named after the large number of pigeons that live there. The pigeons are a popular tourist attraction, and you can often see them flying around the island.

Pigeon Island National Park is a popular spot for snorkeling and diving. The clear waters and the abundance of marine life make it a great place to explore the underwater world.

Things to Do in Pigeon Island National Park

Snorkeling and diving : The clear waters and the abundance of marine life make Pigeon Island National Park a great place to snorkel and dive.

Visit the pigeon colony: The island is home to a large colony of pigeons. You can often see them flying around the island or perched on the trees.

Go for a walk on the beach: The beach at Pigeon Island National Park is beautiful. You can go for a walk on the beach, swim in the sea, or sunbathe.

Visit the lighthouse: There is a lighthouse on the island. You can climb to the top of the lighthouse for stunning views of the surrounding area.

How to Reach Pigeon Island

Pigeon Island National Park is located about 15 kilometers (9 miles) from Nilaveli. There are boats that can take you to the island from Nilaveli.

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located in Nilaveli. Some popular options include the Jetwing Sea Breeze, the Nilaveli Beach Hotel, and the Pigeon Island Beach Resort.

26. Nine Arch Bridge: A Beautiful Railway Bridge in Sri Lanka

Nine Arches Bridge Ella, Sri Lanka

Nine Arch Bridge is a railway bridge located in Sri Lanka. It is a beautiful viaduct that spans the Kelani River. The bridge was built in 1921 and is one of the most iconic landmarks in Sri Lanka.

The bridge is made of concrete and is 91 meters (300 feet) long. It has nine arches that are supported by pillars. The bridge is located in the Knuckles Mountain Range and is a popular tourist destination.

The bridge is a popular spot for photographers. The bridge is especially beautiful when it is lit up at night.

Things to Do near Nine Arch Bridge

Visit the Demodara Railway Station: The Demodara Railway Station is located near the Nine Arch Bridge. The station is a beautiful old station that is worth visiting.

Go for a walk on the bridge: You can walk on the bridge and enjoy the views of the Kelani River.

Take a train ride: You can take a train ride across the bridge. This is a great way to see the bridge and the surrounding area.

Kandy to Ella train journey - Most beautiful train journey in Sri Lanka

Visit the Knuckles Mountain Range: The Knuckles Mountain Range is a beautiful mountain range that is located near the Nine Arch Bridge. You can go for hikes in the mountains or visit the waterfalls.

How to Get to Nine Arch Bridge

Nine Arch Bridge is located about 160 kilometers (100 miles) from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to Nine Arch Bridge from Colombo. There are also a number of taxis and tuk-tuks that can take you to the bridge.

Where to Stay near Nine Arch Bridge

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located near Nine Arch Bridge. Some popular options include the Ella Flower Garden Hotel, the Nine Arch Bridge Hotel, and the Ella Rock Hotel.

27. Spice Garden: A Tropical Paradise of Flavor

Herbs and Spices of Sri Lanka Economy Tours

A spice garden is a garden where spices are grown. Spices are the dried fruits, seeds, bark, or roots of plants that are used to flavor food.

Sri Lanka is known for its spices, and there are many spice gardens located in the country. These gardens are a great place to learn about spices and how they are grown.

Things to Do in a Spice Garden

Learn about spices: You can learn about the different types of spices, how they are grown, and how they are used.

See how spices are processed: You can see how spices are harvested, dried, and processed.

Taste spices: You can taste different spices and learn about their flavors.

Buy spices: You can buy spices to take home with you.

How to Get to a Spice Garden

There are many spice gardens located in Sri Lanka. Some of the most popular spice gardens include the Spice Garden in Matale, the New Ranweli Spice Garden in Kandy, and the Spice Garden in Galle.

Where to Stay near a Spice Garden

There are many hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located near spice gardens. Some popular options include the Matale Hotel, the Kandy Lake Hotel, and the Galle Fort Hotel.

Related reading: Herbs and Spices of Sri Lanka

28. Turtle Hatchery: A Place to Help Protect Sea Turtles

Sea Turtle Farm and Hatchery

A turtle hatchery is a place where sea turtle eggs are protected and hatched. Sea turtles are an important part of the marine ecosystem, but they are also threatened by many factors, including habitat loss, pollution, and poaching. Turtle hatcheries play an important role in helping to protect sea turtles by providing a safe place for their eggs to hatch and hatchlings to grow.

There are many turtle hatcheries located in Sri Lanka. These hatcheries help to protect a variety of sea turtle species, including the green sea turtle, the hawksbill turtle, and the olive ridley turtle.

Things to Do at a Turtle Hatchery

Learn about sea turtles: You can learn about the different species of sea turtles, their life cycles, and the threats they face.

See sea turtle eggs: You can see sea turtle eggs in their nests and learn about the hatching process.

Help release hatchlings: You can help to release hatchlings into the ocean. This is a great way to give back to the environment and help to protect sea turtles.

Turtle Hatchery

How to Get to a Turtle Hatchery

There are many turtle hatcheries located in Sri Lanka. Some of the most popular hatcheries include the Kosgoda Sea Turtle Conservation Project, the Hikkaduwa Turtle Hatchery, and the Pinnawela Turtle Hatchery.

Where to Stay near a Turtle Hatchery

There are many hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located near turtle hatcheries. Some popular options include the Kosgoda Beach Hotel, the Hikkaduwa Beach Hotel, and the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage.

29. St. Anthony’s Church: A Shrine of Miracles

St. Anthony's Church

St. Anthony’s Church is a Catholic church located in Kochchikade, Colombo, Sri Lanka. It is a popular pilgrimage site for Catholics from all over the world.

The church was built in 1889 by the Portuguese. It is dedicated to Saint Anthony of Padua, who is known for his miracles. The church is said to be a place of miracles, and many people come to pray for Saint Anthony’s intercession.

The church is a beautiful building, with a large dome and a bell tower. The interior of the church is decorated with beautiful stained glass windows and paintings.

Things to Do at St. Anthony’s Church

Pray for Saint Anthony's intercession

Pray for Saint Anthony’s intercession

Many people come to St. Anthony’s Church to pray for Saint Anthony’s intercession. There is a statue of Saint Anthony in the church, and people often touch the statue or leave offerings.

Visit the shrine

Shrine - St. Anthony's Church

There is a shrine dedicated to Saint Anthony in the church. The shrine is a place where people can pray and leave offerings.

Attend a mass

There are masses held at St. Anthony’s Church every day. These masses are a great way to experience the Catholic faith and to pray for Saint Anthony’s intercession.

Take a tour of the church

There are tours of St. Anthony’s Church available. These tours are a great way to learn about the history of the church and to see the beautiful architecture. How to Get to St. Anthony’s Church

St. Anthony’s Church is located in Kochchikade, Colombo. It is a short walk from the Fort Station. There are also buses and tuk-tuks that can take you to the church.

Where to Stay near St. Anthony’s Church

There are many hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located near St. Anthony’s Church. Some popular options include the Cinnamon Lakeside Colombo, the Jetwing Hotel Colombo, and the St. Regis Colombo.

30. Wilpattu National Park: The Land of the Leopards

Sri Lankan Leopard

Wilpattu National Park, located in Sri Lanka, is one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places. It is the largest national park in the country and is renowned for its rich biodiversity.

Wilpattu National Park is home to a variety of wildlife, including leopards, elephants, sloth bears, and water buffalo.

The park is named after the “willus” or tanks that are found in the park. The willus are natural lakes that are filled with rainwater. The park is also home to a variety of vegetation, including grasslands, forests, and swamps.

Things to Do in Wilpattu National Park

Spotting leopards

Wilpattu National Park is one of the best places in Sri Lanka to spot leopards. The park has a high density of leopards and you have a good chance of seeing them on a safari.

The best way to see the wildlife in Wilpattu National Park is to go on a safari. There are a number of safari companies that operate in the park and they will take you to the best spots to see the animals.

Paradise Flycatcher at Wilpattu National Park

Birdwatching

Wilpattu National Park is also a great place for birdwatching. The park is home to over 200 species of birds, including eagles, hawks, owls, and kingfishers.

There are a number of hiking trails in Wilpattu National Park. These trails offer stunning views of the park and the surrounding area.

How to Get to Wilpattu National Park

Wilpattu National Park is located in the north-west of Sri Lanka. It is about 300 kilometers from Colombo. There are buses and trains that can take you to the park. There are also a number of taxis and tuk-tuks that can take you to the park.

Where to Stay near Wilpattu National Park

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located near Wilpattu National Park. Some popular options include the Wilpattu Eco Camp, the Wilpattu Safari Camp, and the Wilpattu Village Resort.

31. Pidurangala Rock Hike: A Breathtaking View of Sigiriya

Pidurangala Rock Hiking

Pidurangala Rock is a rock located near Sigiriya Rock in Sri Lanka. It is a one of the popular Sri Lanka tourist places, as it offers stunning views of Sigiriya Rock and the surrounding area.

The rock is about 1,500 feet (457 meters) high and can be reached by a 500-step staircase. The climb is challenging, but the views from the top are worth it.

At the top of the rock, there are ruins of a Buddhist monastery that was built in the 5th century AD. There are also caves that were used by monks as meditation chambers.

Things to Do in Pidurangala

Pidurangala Buddhist monastery

Climb the rock: The most popular activity in Pidurangala Rock is to climb the rock. The climb is challenging, but the views from the top are worth it.

Visit the ruins of the Buddhist monastery: At the top of the rock, there are ruins of a Buddhist monastery that was built in the 5th century AD. These ruins are a great place to learn about the history of the rock and the Buddhist religion.

Visit the caves: There are also caves at the top of the rock that were used by monks as meditation chambers. These caves are a great place to relax and enjoy the peace and quiet.

Pidurangala Rock Hiking - Sri Lanka Economy Tours

Watch the sunrise or sunset: The views from the top of Pidurangala Rock are especially beautiful at sunrise and sunset. This is a great time to visit the rock if you want to see the stunning views and capture some amazing photos.

How to Get to Pidurangala Rock

Pidurangala Rock is located about 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) from Sigiriya Rock. There are buses and tuk-tuks that can take you to Pidurangala Rock from Sigiriya.

Where to Stay near Pidurangala Rock

There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and resorts located near Pidurangala Rock. Some popular options include the Sigiriya Hotel, the Kandalama Hotel, and the Heritance Kandalama.

32. Bambarakanda Falls, Ohiya: A Majestic Waterfall in Sri Lanka

Bambarakanda Falls is a waterfall located near Ohiya in the Central Highlands of Sri Lanka. It is one of the tallest waterfalls in Sri Lanka, with a height of 240 meters (790 feet).

Bambarakanda Falls, Ohiya

Bambarakanda Falls is formed by the Bambarakanda River. The Bambarakanda River flows down from the mountains of the Central Highlands and becomes a waterfall at Bambarakanda Falls, before flowing into the Bay of Matara.

Bambarakanda Falls is a popular tourist destination throughout the year. However, it is especially beautiful during the monsoon season, from July to September, when the water levels are highest and the falls are at their most majestic.

To reach Bambarakanda Falls, you can drive from Ohiya for about 30 minutes. There is a car park near the falls, as well as restaurants and souvenir shops.

Bambarakanda Falls is a must-see for any visitor to Sri Lanka. The sheer scale of the falls is awe-inspiring, and the beauty of the surrounding scenery is simply stunning.

Here are some tips for visiting Bambarakanda Falls:

  • The best time to visit is during the monsoon season, from July to September. However, this is also the wettest time of year, so be prepared for rain.
  • The falls are located at a high altitude, so be sure to dress warmly and wear sturdy shoes.
  • The falls can be crowded, especially during peak tourist season. If you want to avoid the crowds, try to visit early in the morning or late in the afternoon.

33. Polonnaruwa Sacred City: Unveiling Sri Lanka’s Glorious Past

Polonnaruwa was the second capital of Sri Lanka after Anuradhapura. It was founded in the 11th century by King Vijayabahu I, and it remained the capital of Sri Lanka until the 13th century.

Polonnaruwa Ancient City Sri Lanka Economy Tours

Polonnaruwa is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Sri Lanka . The ruins of the ancient city are spread out over a large area, and they include palaces, temples, and monasteries.

Some of the most popular attractions in Polonnaruwa include:

The Lion’s Gate

The Lion’s Gate is the entrance to the ancient city of Polonnaruwa. It is a beautiful archway that is decorated with sculptures of lions.

The Royal Palace

The Royal Palace was the home of the kings of Polonnaruwa. It is a large complex of ruins that includes palaces, temples, and gardens.

The Lankatilaka Temple

The Lankatilaka Temple is a Buddhist temple that was built in the 12th century. It is one of the most important temples in Sri Lanka, and it is known for its beautiful architecture.

The Gal Vihara

gal vihara polonnaruwa sri lanka economy tours

The Gal Vihara is a complex of three rock temples that were carved out of a single rock. It is one of the most impressive monuments in Polonnaruwa, and it is a must-see for any visitor to the city.

Polonnaruwa is a fascinating place to visit, and it is a great way to learn about the history and culture of Sri Lanka. The ruins of the ancient city are a testament to the power and wealth of the Sinhalese kings, and they are a reminder of the rich history of Sri Lanka.

Here are some tips for visiting Polonnaruwa:

  • The best time to visit Polonnaruwa is during the dry season, from December to April.
  • The ruins of Polonnaruwa are spread out over a large area, so be sure to wear comfortable shoes.
  • There are many different things to see in Polonnaruwa, so be sure to plan your time accordingly.
  • There are a number of hotels, guesthouses, and restaurants in Polonnaruwa, so you will be able to find accommodation to suit your budget.

Related reading: Polonnaruwa Ancient City

Sri Lanka in July: Weather, Activities, Places, Tips & more

33 Most Popular Sri Lanka Tourist Places

These places offer a wide variety of experiences, from exploring ancient ruins to hiking in the mountains to relaxing on the beach. Whether you are a first-time visitor to Sri Lanka or a returning traveler, these places are sure to amaze and inspire you.

What is the visa requirement for visiting Sri Lanka?

Citizens of most countries need a visa to visit Sri Lanka. You can apply for a visa online or at the Sri Lankan embassy or consulate in your home country.

What is the best time of year to visit Sri Lanka?

The best time of year to visit Sri Lanka is during the dry season, which is from December to April. During this time, the weather is warm and sunny, and there is less chance of rain.

Suggested reading: Best Time to Visit Sri Lanka – A Comprehensive Guide

What are some other activities that can be enjoyed in Sri Lanka besides the popular tourist places?

Sri Lanka is a beautiful country with a lot to offer visitors. In addition to the popular tourist places, some other popular activities in Sri Lanka include:

* Hiking and biking * Snorkeling and diving * Cultural experiences * Beaches * Shopping * Food and wine

What Languages Are Spoken In Sri Lanka?

The official language of Sri Lanka is Sinhala, but English is widely spoken.

What is the Currency in Sri Lanka?

The currency of Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan rupee.

Is Sri Lanka Safe to Travel Now ?

Sri Lanka is a safe country to travel.

Sri Lanka Wildlife Safari: An Unforgettable Journey into the Heart of Nature

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Sigiriya Fortress

Must Visit Places in Sri Lanka

Sigiriya

World's End Nuwara Eliya

World's End Nuwara Eliya

Yala National Park

Yala National Park

Galle Face Green

Galle Face Green

Sinharaja Forest Reserve

Sinharaja Forest Reserve

Declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Sinharaja Forest Reserve (kingdom of the lion), is a paradise for nature and wildlife lovers. It is home to a vast number of endemic species of birds and mammals of Sri Lanka. About 95 per cent of Sri Lankan endemic birds and more than 50 per cent of endemic mammals are known to have their habitats in this Forest Reserve. 

Year round, the forest is covered by plenty of rain clouds. It is one of the famous places to visit in Galle. You can experience the leisurely pace of wildlife and the splendour of dense and copious evergreen rainforests.  Location: Sinharaja Forest Reserve, Southern Province Timings: Opens daily from 6:30 AM to 6 PM Price: Approximate price ranges from INR 260 to INR460 (664 LKR to 1160 LKR) You Can Checkout Great Discounts On:  Overnight Desert Safari Dubai

St Anthony's Church

St Anthony's Church

Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue

Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue

The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic

The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic

Bentota Beach

Bentota Beach

St. Clairs Falls, Tawalantenne

St. Clairs Falls, Tawalantenne

International Buddhist Museum

International Buddhist Museum

Mahiyanganaya Sorabora Lake, Uva Province

Mahiyanganaya Sorabora Lake, Uva Province

  • Nuwara Eliya

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Ruwanwelisaya

Ruwanwelisaya

Ruwanwelisaya, located in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka, is a sacred Buddhist stupa. Dating back to 140 BCE, it stands as a testament to ancient craftsmanship and religious significance. The large hemispherical dome, adorned with intricate carvings and surrounded by a serene courtyard, attracts pilgrims and tourists alike. Ruwanwelisaya stands as a symbol of Sri Lanka's rich cultural and religious heritage, drawing visitors to its spiritual ambiance.

Polonnaruwa Sacred City

Polonnaruwa Sacred City

Visit Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage

Visit Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage

Anuradhapura

Anuradhapura

The Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications

The Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications

Horton Plains National Park

Horton Plains National Park

Dehiwala Zoo

Dehiwala Zoo

Bambarakanda Falls, Ohiya

Bambarakanda Falls, Ohiya

Nestled in the central highlands of Sri Lanka, Bambarakanda Falls, the island nation's tallest waterfall at 263 meters, stands as a captivating highlight on Sri Lanka tour itineraries. Accessible through Haldummulla, the journey unveils scenic landscapes and tea plantations. Visitors relish the refreshing mist and serene atmosphere, making it a tranquil stop. Serving as a base for treks to nearby mountains, Bambarakanda offers a perfect blend of natural beauty and adventure, making it a must-visit destination for those exploring Sri Lanka's diverse landscapes and seeking a picturesque escape into the country's pristine wilderness. The falls add a majestic touch to Sri Lanka tours , inviting travelers to witness the awe-inspiring beauty of this natural wonder.

Places to Visit in Colombo

Stroll dutch reformed church.

Stroll Dutch Reformed Church

Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe National Park

Tea and Herb Tour in Colombo

Tea and Herb Tour in Colombo

Gangaramaya Temple

Gangaramaya Temple

National Museum of Colombo

National Museum of Colombo

Sri Lanka Cricket Museum

Sri Lanka Cricket Museum

Panadura Beach

Panadura Beach

Viharamahadevi Park

Viharamahadevi Park

Places to Visit in Kandy

Kandy view point.

Kandy View Point

National Museum of Kandy

National Museum of Kandy

Arthur's Seat

Arthur's Seat

Royal Palace of Kandy

Royal Palace of Kandy

Udawattekele Sanctuary

Udawattekele Sanctuary

Independence Memorial Hall

Independence Memorial Hall

Dambulla Cave Temple

Dambulla Cave Temple

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Nestled in the heart of Kandy, Sri Lanka, Kandy Lake (Bogambara We) is a serene artificial reservoir that enhances the city's natural beauty. Constructed in 1807 by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe, the lake is surrounded by lush greenery and offers a tranquil escape. Visitors can enjoy leisurely strolls along its scenic promenade, soak in panoramic views of the city, and appreciate the cultural significance of this iconic water feature in the heart of the hill capital.

Places to Visit in Galle

Galle fort lighthouse.

Galle Fort Lighthouse

The Galle Fort Lighthouse, situated within the historic Galle Fort in Sri Lanka, is a picturesque maritime landmark with a storied past. Originally constructed by the British in 1848, the lighthouse stands proudly atop the fort's ramparts, offering panoramic views of the Indian Ocean and the charming coastal surroundings. Renovated in recent years, it continues to guide ships and stands as a symbol of Galle's maritime heritage, attracting visitors with its scenic allure.

Top Experiences To Do in Galle Fort Lighthouse

Excursion to Galle

Galle Dutch Fort

Galle Dutch Fort

Best of Malaysia

 Places to Visit in Malaysia, Tourist Places & Top Attractions

Unawatuna Beach

Unawatuna Beach

Sea Turtle Hatchery

Sea Turtle Hatchery

A sea turtle hatchery is a vital conservation initiative aimed at protecting endangered sea turtles. These facilities provide a safe environment for turtle eggs to hatch, ensuring the survival of vulnerable hatchlings. Dedicated to preserving marine biodiversity, hatcheries often engage in educational efforts to raise awareness about sea turtles' threats and promote responsible conservation practices. Visitors can witness the marvel of newly hatched turtles and learn about ongoing conservation efforts.

Jungle Beach

Jungle Beach

Jungle Beach in Sri Lanka is a pristine coastal haven, tucked away near Trincomalee. Accessible through lush jungle trails, this secluded paradise boasts golden sands, crystal-clear waters, and a serene ambiance. Surrounded by dense vegetation, it offers a tranquil escape for nature lovers and beach enthusiasts alike. Jungle Beach is renowned for its untouched beauty, providing an idyllic setting where visitors can relax, unwind, and immerse themselves in the natural splendor of Sri Lanka's coastline.

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Koggala Beach

Koggala Beach

Places to Visit in Ella

Mahamevnawa monastery.

Mahamevnawa Monastery

The Mahamevnawa Monastery is one of the most important and revered Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka founded by Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda Thero and is amongst the top places to visit in Ella. This monastery serves as an educational institution for young people and adults who want to be ordained as monks. 

Sri Lankan artists have adorned the Monastery with striking carvings, murals, and painting. Here, you can not only talk freely to the monks but also take personalised meditation lectures from them. Listening to the reverberating Buddhist hymns amidst the peaceful environs is a tranquil experience. 

Location: Bandarawela, Ella

Timings: 8:00 am- 9:00 pm every day of the week

Price: There is no entry fee

Ella Rock

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Dhowa Rock Temple

Dhowa Rock Temple

Ravana's Cave

Ravana's Cave

Places to Visit in Mirissa

Mirissa beach.

Mirissa Beach

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Polhena Beach

Polhena Beach

The Doctors House

The Doctors House

Places to Visit in Bentota

Bentota lake.

Bentota Lake

Best of Kuala Lumpur

 Places to Visit in Kuala Lumpur & Top Tourist Places

Moragalla Beach

Moragalla Beach

Kande Vihara

Kande Vihara

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Sri Lanka Top Attractions

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The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, nestled in Kandy, Sri Lanka, is a revered spiritual destination often featured in Sri Lanka tour packages. Home to the sacred tooth relic of Lord Buddha, the temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, boasting intricate Kandyan architecture and serene surroundings. Pilgrims and visitors are captivated by the rich cultural heritage and the daily rituals that honor the relic. The Esala Perahera, an elaborate annual procession, further enhances the temple's significance. Including a visit to the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Sri Lanka tour packages ensures a profound cultural and spiritual experience amidst the historical and religious grandeur of Kandy.

Adam's Peak

Adam's Peak, a revered pilgrimage site in Sri Lanka, stands as an iconic natural landmark and is often featured in Sri Lanka packages. Rising majestically in the central highlands, this sacred mountain is renowned for the "Sri Pada" or "Sacred Footprint," a revered indentation at its summit. Pilgrims and hikers alike ascend during the night to witness the breathtaking sunrise, creating a mystical experience. The journey offers not just religious significance but also panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes. Inclusion of Adam's Peak in Sri Lanka packages ensures a unique blend of spirituality and natural beauty, promising an unforgettable adventure for travelers.

Minneriya & Kaudulla National Parks

Minneriya and Kaudulla National Parks in Sri Lanka beckon wildlife enthusiasts with their breathtaking landscapes. Often featured in Sri Lanka packages, these parks are famed for their annual gathering of elephants, known as "The Gathering." The vast reservoirs and lush surroundings provide a haven for diverse wildlife, including leopards, deer, and numerous bird species. The unique spectacle of hundreds of elephants converging is a captivating experience, making Minneriya and Kaudulla essential stops for those seeking an immersive encounter with nature's wonders. Including these national parks in Sri Lanka packages ensures a thrilling exploration of the island's rich biodiversity and natural beauty.Best For: Getting close to large herds of elephants. Best time to visit is during May to September to watch large number of elephants. Location: 182-197 KM away from Colombo. Price: Safari Price is LKR 6,500 for each National Park. Additional Price: Tickets per adult is LKR 1,500 and per child is LKR 750. Duration: safari duration is 4 hours. Timing: Evening Safari 2.30am to 6.30pm and morning safari is 5:00am to 8:00am.

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Top 17 Places to See in Sri Lanka – Discover the Hidden Treasure

Sri Lanka has a variety of towns and villages to explore. From bustling cities with vibrant nightlife to quiet villages with picturesque landscapes, every town and village in Sri Lanka has its own charm and atmosphere.

Here are the top 17 must-see places to visit on your trip through Sri Lanka:

Nestled in the hills of the central highlands is Kandy, the cultural heart of Sri Lanka. It is known for its rich history and religious significance, being the site of the sacred Temple of the Tooth, one of the most important Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the world.

Highlights :

  • Temple of the Tooth – an impressive temple that houses the sacred tooth of Buddha.
  • Kandy Lake – an artificial lake in the heart of the city
  • Peradeniya Botanical Garden – a paradise for plant lovers
  • traditional Kandy dances – a fascinating display of art and culture.

Top 17 Places to visit|see in Sri Lanka - Discover the Hidden Treasure

2. Nuwara Eliya

Nuwara Eliya, known as the “City of Light” and “Little England,” is a charming mountain village known for its cooler temperatures, beautiful gardens and endless tea plantations. The breathtaking scenery and colonial architecture add a special charm to the town.

Highlights:

  • Horton Plains National Park – a breathtaking plateau with unique flora and fauna
  • Lake Gregory – a picturesque lake ideal for boat trips
  • Tea factory tours – an opportunity to experience the process of tea production first hand.

Nuwara Eliya in Sri Lanka

3. Anuradhapura

One of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Anuradhapura is a window into Sri Lanka’s rich history. With the ruins of ancient royal palaces and impressive stupas, this city is a paradise for history buffs.

  • Sacred Bodhi tree – the oldest historically authenticated tree in the world.
  • Ruins of ancient royal palaces and dagobas (stupas) – evidence of the city’s glorious past.

As the economic center and capital of Sri Lanka, Colombo offers a vibrant mix of old and new. Between skyscrapers and bustling streets, there are still traces of colonial heritage to be found in the city’s architecture and culture.

  • Galle Face Green – a seaside promenade perfect for a relaxing evening stroll.
  • National Museum – home to an impressive collection of artifacts
  • Beira Lake – a tranquil spot in the middle of the city
  • Pettah Market – a lively market offering everything from spices to textiles.

Galle, a city that offers a fascinating blend of European architecture and South Asian tradition, is a historical gem. The famous Galle Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a must-see for any visitor.

  • Galle Fort – an excellently preserved colonial fort with charming alleys
  • Dutch Reformed Church – a historic building with fascinating architecture
  • National Maritime Museum – offers a glimpse into the maritime history of Sri Lanka.

Ella is a small, quiet mountain village surrounded by the beautiful green hills of the highlands. With its hiking trails and breathtaking viewpoints, Ella is a paradise for nature lovers.

  • Ella Gap – a breathtaking viewpoint offering panoramic views of the valleys, tea plantations and mountainsNine Arches Bridge – an impressive colonial railroad bridge.
  • Little Adam’s Peak – an easy hike that leads to spectacular views.

7. Trincomalee

Trincomalee, a town on the east coast of Sri Lanka, is known for its pristine beaches and fascinating dive sites. With its rich coral reefs and diverse marine life, Trincomalee is a perfect destination for water lovers.

  • Koneswaram Temple – a Hindu temple with breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean
  • Pigeon Island National Park – a paradise for snorkelers and divers
  • Whale Watching – a chance to see humpback and blue whales in their natural environment.

Jaffna, the northernmost city in Sri Lanka, offers visitors a glimpse into the country’s rich Tamil culture and history. The city is known for its unique culinary offerings and fascinating historical sites.

  • Jaffna Fort – a historical fort with an impressive view.
  • Nallur Kandaswamy Temple – an important Hindu temple known for its magnificent ceremonies
  • Local cuisine – try the unique dishes like Jaffna Crab Curry.

9. Dambulla

Dambulla, known for its golden cave temple complex, is a must for any cultural traveler. The town also provides a good base for visiting the nearby Sigiriya Rock.

  • Dambulla Cave Temple – an impressive temple complex with Buddhist murals and statues;
  • Sigiriya Rock – a massive rock formation with the ruins of an ancient fortress at the top.
  • Elephant Safari – the opportunity to observe elephants in their natural environment.

10. Polonnaruwa

One of Sri Lanka’s ancient capitals, Polonnaruwa offers an impressive collection of well-preserved ruins and historical sites. Part of Sri Lanka’s “Cultural Triangle,” the city reflects the country’s glorious past.

  • Gal Vihara – an impressive rock temple with four giant Buddha statues.
  • King Parakramabahu Statue – a tribute to the king who led the city to its heyday
  • Parakrama Samudraya – a huge artificial lake showing the amazing irrigation techniques of ancient Sri Lanka.

11. Negombo

Negombo, a charming coastal town near Bandaranaike International Airport, is famous for its long sandy beaches and historic Dutch fort. With numerous water sports and a vibrant fishing community, Negombo is an ideal place to immerse yourself in local life.

  • Dutch Fort – a historical monument from the colonial era
  • Negombo beach – a popular place for relaxation and water sports
  • Fish market – a lively scene of daily life.

Yala National Park, although not a traditional urban center, is an absolute must for nature lovers. Known for its high density of leopards, the park also offers a variety of other wildlife and stunning scenery.

  • Leopard sightings – one of the best places in the world to see leopards in the wild
  • Bird watching – home to over 200 species of birds.
  • Safari tours – guided tours of the park to experience the diverse wildlife.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

13. Bentota

Bentota, a popular beach destination on Sri Lanka’s west coast, offers a wealth of water sports. It is also known for the Brief Garden, a beautifully landscaped garden, and its turtle conservation projects.

  • Water sports – a variety of activities such as jet skiing, windsurfing and diving.
  • Brief Garden – a landscaped garden designed by an artist.
  • Turtle Conservation Projects – insights into efforts to conserve endangered sea turtles.

14. Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay, located on the east coast of Sri Lanka, is a paradise for surfers. It is not only a hotspot for international surfers, but also offers a breathtaking natural landscape and the possibility to observe wildlife in the nearby Kumana National Park.

  • Surfing – one of the best surfing destinations in Asia
  • Kumana National Park – home to elephants, leopards and a variety of bird species.
  • Yoga and meditation – numerous retreats for spiritual relaxation.

15. Mirissa

Mirissa, a small town in the south of Sri Lanka, is known for its stunning beaches and as one of the best places in the world for blue whale watching. With its picturesque sunsets and laid-back lifestyle, Mirissa is the ideal place to relax.

  • Whale watching – a chance to see the majestic blue whales in their natural environment.
  • Mirissa Beach – a picturesque place to relax and surf; Coconut Tree Hill – a famous lookout point with magnificent views of the ocean.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

16. Hikkaduwa

Hikkaduwa , another popular beach destination, is known for its coral reefs, perfect for snorkeling and diving. The town is also home to a turtle hatchery that works to protect these fascinating creatures.

  • Snorkeling and diving – explore the colorful coral reefs.
  • Turtle hatchery – learn about the protection of sea turtles
  • Beach parties – Hikkaduwa is known for its vibrant nightlife.

17. Unawatuna

Unawatuna, with its beautiful crescent-shaped beach and stunning coral reef, is a true paradise for sunbathers and snorkelers. The town also offers a number of yoga retreats and is known for its relaxed atmosphere.

  • Unawatuna beach – ideal for sunbathing and swimming.
  • Snorkeling – explore the rich marine life of the coral reef.
  • Yoga retreats – perfect for a refreshing and relaxing getaway.

Sri Lanka is truly a treasure for any traveler, with its rich variety of experiences ranging from historical sites and cultural discoveries to breathtaking natural landscapes and adventure activities . The 17 cities and towns featured offer a comprehensive overview of what this fascinating country has to offer. Plan your trip now and be enchanted by the unique beauty and charm of Sri Lanka.

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15 Must See Attractions to Add to Your Sri Lanka Itinerary

Nov 17, 2021 | Popular Reads , Sri Lanka , Travel Tips

If you are like us and super excited to travel as soon as possible in 2022, the beautiful country of Sri Lanka is most likely the place for you. It will be one of the first countries operating for us here at One Life Adventures as they have already begun accepting tourists from some countries. This tropical destination lies just 30 kilometres south-east of India sitting in the Indian ocean. Sri Lanka obtained independence in 1948 after 150 years of British control, and has since become a renowned tourist destination. Beautiful beaches, fantastic wildlife, and unending tea plantations are all well-known features of this country. In this blog post, we’ll go through 15 must see sites in Sri Lanka that you should have on your itinerary for 2022!

1. Sigiriya Rock

Sigiriya Rock is one of Sri Lanka’s most popular tourist destinations and a must-see. It was formerly the royal palace of King Kassapa, one of Sri Lanka’s ancient rulers, and is now one of eight UNESCO World Heritage sites in the country. Sigiriya Rock, which rises above the lush green trees below and is known as Lion Rock, is home to Sri Lanka’s oldest surviving palace. This is because of the colossal lion statue that used to greet guests at the entryway. The lion’s paws, which may now be found at the bottom of Sigiriya rock, are all that remains of the statue.

Prepare for a strenuous hike up to the pinnacle of this historic fortification. The climb to the top is over 1200 stairs, and while it sounds exhausting (and it is), the views from the top are well worth it. Wearing lightweight clothing, comfortable shoes, and bringing lots of water are just a few of our top ideas for making your travel a little simpler. Sunscreen is also a requirement up here, as the scorching Sri Lankan sun will be beating down on you the entire time you’re walking, especially once you reach the summit.

During our 12 day Sri Lanka tour , we start hiking up Sigiriya Rock quite early in the morning. The views from the summit are breathtaking, so don’t forget to bring your camera. We’ll show you antique wall murals and a mirror wall with sanskrit markings, making you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. Why don’t you join us for this magical adventure?

an aerial photo of sigiriya rock in sri lanka

2. Dambulla Caves

Dambulla Caves are around 30 minutes from the world-famous Sigiriya Rock and two hours from Kandy. This religious site has the largest cave complex in Sri Lanka, as well as the best preservation. It is a UNESCO world heritage site that is made up of five caves, each with its own set of statues.

This Buddhist complex has been a pilgrimage attraction for over 2,000 years and is officially known as the ‘Golden Temple of Dambulla.’ Over 150 Buddha sculptures and several murals may be seen within these caverns. Maharaja Vihara Lena is the name of the cave that is the largest (or the Cave of the Great Kings). This is due to the presence of statues of two ancient Sri Lankan monarchs, Nissankamalla and Valagambahu.

One thing we’ll remind you of is to bring your water bottle! There are quite a few steps to the summit, and the humidity of Sri Lanka will make you sweat if you don’t stay hydrated. However, keep an eye out for monkeys who could try to steal it!

 reclining buddha statue in dambulla caves in sri lanka

3. Udawalawe National Park

A safari in Udawalawe National Park is a necessity for anybody that loves animals. This national park was founded in 1972 and has since grown in popularity among travelers. The main reason for this is that it is one of the top national parks in Sri Lanka for viewing Sri Lankan elephants. This is due to the presence of the Udawalawe reservoir, which attracts elephants, especially during the dry season. Leopards, jackals, sambar deer, water buffalo, and crocodiles are some of the other animals you might observe. That’s why Udawalawe National Park should be on everyone’s bucket list, especially animal lovers!

There are several different companies that offer safaris in Udawalawe National Park, but do your homework first. Some tour companies practice unethical practices, such as crowding around the animals to offer tourists a better view. However, because this is harmful to the local animals, it’s a good idea to check reviews before choosing a company. If you don’t want to worry about which company to choose, why not join us on our 12 day Sri Lanka tour . We’ll take care of everything, and you’ll even be able to go glamping only 45 minutes outside of the national park. You can watch our youtube video about glamping in Udawalawe National Park to see how cool the accommodation is!

elephants gathering at a watering hole in udawalawe national park in sri lanka

4. Coconut Tree Hill in Mirissa

Coconut Tree Hill is one of Sri Lanka’s most popular Instagram destinations. It is an outcropping of palm trees at the edge of the water, just past Mirissa beach. This location is stunning, and it’s the ideal spot for watching the sunset (or sunrise if you’re an early riser). If you’re a photographer, we recommend going early in the morning or late in the afternoon, as this site is very busy in the afternoon and at sunset.

You might even see a turtle pop its head up and surf the waves if you’re lucky. Take your time here to relax and take in the scenery, since watching these lovely creatures surface is a very spectacular experience. Coconut Tree Hill is, in our opinion, one of the nicest sites to visit in Sri Lanka and should not be missed!

an aerial photo of coconut tree hill in Mirissa

5. Mirissa Beach

Mirissa Beach is one of Sri Lanka’s most beautiful beaches, so don’t miss out on the opportunity to relax here on your vacation! This beach offers something for everyone, whether you just want to relax with your towel, try your hand at surfing, or go snorkelling. If you wish to go surfing, go to the western part of the beach, where the waves can reach rather large and the beach is more peaceful. If you enjoy snorkeling, we propose going to Parrot Rock, where you will be able to witness a variety of colorful fish!

There are plenty of wonderful dining options on the beach as well, ranging from tasty Sri Lankan curries to a wide variety of western cuisine if you’re looking for a taste of home. Restaurants prefer to light lights and lanterns when the sun sets, making this the ideal time to get a bite to eat! Mirissa beach, unlike many others in Sri Lanka, does not appear to be overcrowded and has a very calm ambiance, making it an ideal destination.

mirissa beach in sri lanka

6. Nine Arches Bridge

If you’re planning any future travels to this beautiful nation, the Nine Arches Bridge should surely be on your itinerary! This bridge is one of the nicest places to visit in Sri Lanka, and you can see it from a variety of vantage points. The Ella Highland Bridge is surrounded by lush green forest and tea plantations and is located in the mountain town of Ella.

Between Ella and Demodara train stations lies the Nine Arches Bridge, which rises at a remarkable 30 meters high. Trains pass over this bridge at various times throughout the day, providing you with an excellent opportunity to get some spectacular images. If you’re unsure about the train schedule, ask the owner of your lodging. While you wait, there are plenty of things to do in the area surrounding the bridge, including a cafe.

 aerial view of train passing over nine arches bridge in ella, sri lanka

7. Temple of the Tooth

The Temple of the Tooth is a Buddhist shrine in Kandy that houses Sri Lanka’s most precious relic. A tooth of the Lord Buddha himself is kept in a tightly guarded room within the temple, so you can imagine how sacred this site is. You won’t be able to see the tooth because it is stored in a gold coffin, but you will be allowed to visit the room at particular times of the day.

It’s important to dress respectfully when visiting this magnificent site, so make sure your legs and shoulders are covered. The complex can get rather crowded because it is a famous tourist and worship destination, however there are additional sites to explore within the complex if the main temple is too crowded. There are various additional museums to visit here, as well as a view of the King’s palace (which is not open to the public).

 temple of the tooth in kandy sri lanka

8. Ella Rock

Ella Rock is one of Sri Lanka’s best viewpoints, but the hike up isn’t easy. For this hike, there is no obvious trail or markers, and the paths seem to go here, there, and everywhere. Some of the signage has even been modified to point in the wrong direction so that locals can find you if you get lost and make money by driving you to the summit. Check with your hostel management beforehand to ensure you’re on the proper track, or simply follow folks up there if they’re heading that way!

There are a few distinct sights that you should see after you reach the summit. The first one has a small hut with great juice and smoothies, which are ideal after a sweaty climb. If you walk to the left of the cabin, you’ll come across two more viewpoints with breathtaking views. The walk is roughly 10 kilometres round the way, so wear appropriate shoes and bring lots of drinks and snacks.

When visiting Ella Rock, we recommend going early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the temperature is at its lowest. It’s a long trek up, but it’s well worth it!

9. Adams Peak

Adams Peak is the place to go if you’re looking for a hiking trip. Adams Peak, at 2243 meters, may seem intimidating, but the views from the top will be well worth your time and effort. This mountain, also known as Sri Pada, is a popular pilgrimage destination for a number of reasons. Adams Peak is thought to be the site of Adam’s exile to the Garden of Eden, as well as the site of Buddha’s final step on earth before entering Nirvana. This makes Adams Peak significant to many different religions, and around 20,000 pilgrims ascended Adams Peak each year before the pandemic. It’s not easy being the 5th tallest mountain in Sri Lanka!

There are several routes to get to Adams Peak, but they all need a decent level of fitness. The most common route begins in Hatton, which is also the route taken by the majority of pilgrims. This route is shorter than the others, but it is extremely steep, and it takes around 3 hours to reach the summit. There are, however, numerous rest stops along the road, including smaller temples and cottages selling tea and food. That makes the journey a lot easier!

10. Whale watching in Mirissa

Although this is technically not a ‘site,’ but rather an activity, we couldn’t leave it off the list! You have a rather good chance of spotting the world’s largest animal, the blue whale, if you visit Sri Lanka between November and April. Between those months, Sri Lanka’s whale-watching season begins, with a 90 percent chance of encountering one of these remarkable creatures. It’s important to remember, though, that these are wild creatures, and while sightings are likely, they’re not guaranteed.

Other whale species pass through this section of the ocean as well, so it’s not just blue whales you’ll see off the coast of Mirissa. These seas are frequently visited by sperm whales, fin whales, pilot whales, Bryde’s whales, and even killer whales. Bottlenose and spinner dolphins frequently swim beside you, putting on a show for you, and if you’re lucky, you may spot some turtles or even a whale shark!

If you travel with us during whale-watching season, we will take you on an ethical and enjoyable whale-watching excursion! You’ll get to spend the day out on the water looking for whales while also eating some delicious grilled cuisine. Who could possibly want anything more?

a whale’s tail fin coming out of the water in mirissa, sri lanka

11. Hikkaduwa beach

Hikkaduwa is one of the best spots to watch turtles in Sri Lanka and who doesn’t want to see turtles? Swimming with sea turtles is a dream come true for many people, and Sri Lanka is undoubtedly one of the best places to do it.

There are a handful of things to keep in mind when visiting Hikkaduwa. These turtles spend almost the entire year here, so it’s crucial to treat them with respect. They are frequently seen near the shore seeking for seaweed, so keep your distance and respect their space. Another crucial point is to avoid touching them! Because they are wild animals, they should never be poked, prodded, or grabbed. If you go further out into the water from the shore, you’ll often see additional turtles swimming about. Because most people prefer to stay by the beach, this will provide you with a more tranquil encounter with the turtles.

We visit Hikkaduwa during our 12-day Sri Lanka tour to view these magnificent sea turtles. There is a specific section of the beach where these turtles are most frequently seen, giving you the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream.

hikkaduwa beach in sri lanka

12. Pidurangala Rock – The Buddhist monastery of Pidurangala

We’ve already discussed how spectacular Sigiriya Rock is, but the view from the top of Pidurangala is unsurpassed! One of our favorite things to do in Sri Lanka is to watch the sunset from the top of this massive rock. It’s an unforgettable experience. Depending on your fitness level, the hike to the top normally takes 30-45 minutes. The trek up can be challenging at times, and there is a short piece of rock climbing at the end, but it is well worth the effort. When you reach the summit, you’ll be treated to a spectacular view of Sigiriya Rock in the distance, so bring your camera!

The remains of the Royal Cave temple, as well as the massive reclining Buddha that rests within, may be seen on the route up. King Kashyapa is claimed to have built the temple while constructing the old fortification that sits atop Sigiriya Rock. The monks who had been displaced during the construction of Sigiriya were relocated to this temple. It’s the ideal spot to recover your breath after a long trek!

We’ll trek up this amazing Rock together, and I’ll show you the breathtaking view from the summit. If you want to learn more, check out our   Youtube video of a sunset hike up Pidurangala Rock!

13. Galle Fort

Galle is Sri Lanka’s fourth largest city, but a portion of it distinguishes it from Colombo and Negombo. As you travel through the city, you will come upon the historic Dutch Quarter, known as Galle Fort, which is positioned directly on the coast. This district, which was first developed by the Portuguese in the 16th century, is Sri Lanka’s best surviving colonial town. The fort was then seized by the Dutch in the 17th century, who fortified the area until it was captured by the British. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of Sri Lanka’s most renowned tourist attractions.

It will feel as if you have traveled back in time as you enter Galle Fort from the city of Galle. The Galle clock tower, the Groote Kerk, and, of course, the famed Galle lighthouse are among the most popular tourist attractions. This lighthouse has gone viral on Instagram and is a favorite destination for aspiring photographers. You’ll want to set out a few hours to wander and take in the sights in this delightful town. You might even catch a glimpse of marine turtles swimming underneath the fort walls if you’re lucky!

Galle fort is one of the best places to visit in Sri Lanka and is a must for your trip! During our Sri Lanka tour we’ll go to this wonderful place and show you the greatest places to visit.

Galle Fort Lighthouse

14. Little Adams Peak

Little Adams Peak is located in Ella and provides breathtaking views to those who choose to hike to the summit. Little Adams Peak is not to be mistaken with Adams Peak, which has a much longer and more difficult hike. Despite the number of stairs, it is one of Ella’s most accessible walks. The route begins on a prominent road, making it simple to locate, and there are numerous signposts along the way.

The trek takes about an hour and passes through lush tea plantations on its way to the top. The surrounding panorama will astound you once you reach the summit, so allow yourself some additional time to take it all in. If you get up early enough to catch the dawn on Little Adam’s Peak, you’ll be rewarded handsomely. Similarly, the sunset is beautiful, but you’ll have a lot more company. The views from the summit are breathtaking at any time of day, but if you go in the afternoon, be aware of the heat. On your way down, you can stop at 98 acres resort if you’re hungry or thirsty.

little adams peak in ella, sri lanka

15. Take a ride on the famous Train

We understand that a train isn’t technically a travel activity, but we couldn’t leave this one off the list. As it runs through lush tea plantations and misty mountains, Sri Lanka’s legendary train journey is regarded as one of the most beautiful in the world. The railway journey begins in Colombo, but the Ella to Kandy segment is the most well-known (or vice versa). This section of the train travel takes about 6-7 hours and is the ideal time to unwind, so bring plenty of snacks. If you want to cross the famed Nine Arch Bridge, you should begin your journey in Kandy and purchase a ticket to Badulla station, which is one of the train stations just past Ella.

Tickets can be purchased online or at a train station, however it is recommended that you purchase them in advance. This train excursion is one of the most popular things to do in Sri Lanka, and tickets might sell out quickly, especially if you want to travel first class. However, with the windows open, the carriage humming with people, and the chance to walk around, 2nd class is usually a better experience. This is an experience not to be missed, regardless of the ticket class you purchase.

These are just a few of the fantastic spots to see in Sri Lanka. This country has something for everyone, whether you enjoy wildlife, relaxing by the beach, or wanting a daring adventure. We’ve gone over 15 of the best spots to add to your Sri Lanka itinerary throughout this blog post, but it’s safe to say that we haven’t even begun to explore what this country has to offer. This country is the ideal tropical vacation spot that won’t break the wallet. In Sri Lanka, public transportation is available across the country, making travel simple and inexpensive. The accommodation is also inexpensive, and the food is even less so! Is there any other reason to come to Sri Lanka?

Why not join us in experiencing this amazing country together if you’ve already fallen in love with the sound of Sri Lanka? Take a look at our 12 day Sri Lanka tour and let us show you the magic of this beautiful destination which is expected to be open again in January 2022!

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The Ultimate Sri Lanka Travel Guide

Published: October 12, 2023

Modified: December 28, 2023

by Helen Behrens

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Introduction

Welcome to the ultimate Sri Lanka travel guide. Nestled in the Indian Ocean, this beautiful island nation is a vibrant tapestry of history, culture, and natural wonders. From ancient temples and UNESCO World Heritage sites to pristine beaches and lush tea plantations, Sri Lanka offers a diverse range of experiences for every traveler.

With its warm and friendly locals, delicious cuisine, and breathtaking landscapes, Sri Lanka has become an increasingly popular destination for tourists from around the world. Whether you’re seeking relaxation, adventure, or a cultural immersion, Sri Lanka has something to offer for everyone.

One of the most appealing aspects of traveling to Sri Lanka is its compact size. Despite being a relatively small country, it packs a punch with its abundance of attractions and activities. You can explore ancient ruins, trek through lush rainforests, spot wildlife, relax on sun-kissed beaches, and indulge in mouthwatering cuisine all in one trip.

As you embark on your Sri Lanka journey, this travel guide will provide you with all the essential information to make your trip unforgettable. From visa requirements to the best time to visit, from transportation options to top attractions, we’ve got you covered.

So, pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready to embark on an incredible adventure in the teardrop-shaped island of Sri Lanka. Let’s dive into the details and discover everything you need to know to plan an unforgettable trip to this enchanting destination.

Visa Requirements

Before traveling to Sri Lanka, it is important to understand the visa requirements. Most visitors need to obtain an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) before arrival. The ETA can be obtained online through the official website or from the nearest Sri Lankan embassy or consulate.

The visa process is straightforward and can usually be completed within a few days. The cost of the ETA varies depending on your nationality and the duration of your stay. It is advisable to apply for the ETA well in advance to avoid any last-minute complications.

The ETA allows visitors to stay in Sri Lanka for up to 30 days. If you wish to extend your stay, you can apply for an extension at the Department of Immigration and Emigration in Sri Lanka.

It is important to note that passport validity is a crucial aspect of visa requirements. Your passport should be valid for at least six months from the date of entry into Sri Lanka. Additionally, you may be required to provide proof of sufficient funds for your stay and a return or onward ticket.

For travelers who plan to engage in work or religious activities, it is necessary to obtain the appropriate visa type that allows such activities. It is advised to seek guidance from the Sri Lankan embassy or consulate in your home country to ensure you have the correct visa for your intended activities.

Lastly, it is important to abide by the laws and regulations of Sri Lanka during your visit. Any violation of the visa rules can result in fines, deportation, or legal consequences. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the do’s and don’ts of your visa to ensure a hassle-free and enjoyable trip to Sri Lanka.

Best Time to Visit Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a year-round destination, but the best time to visit largely depends on what you want to experience during your trip. The island nation experiences two distinct monsoon seasons, which affect different parts of the country at different times.

From December to March, the west and south coasts, as well as the Cultural Triangle region, experience the dry season. This is considered the peak tourist season as the weather is sunny with minimal rainfall. The sea is also calm, making it ideal for beach activities and water sports. However, this is also the busiest time for tourism, so expect larger crowds and higher prices.

From May to September, the east coast and the north-central regions of Sri Lanka bask in dry weather, while the rest of the country experiences the southwest monsoon. The east coast is known for its pristine beaches, and this is an excellent time to explore them. The weather is hot and ideal for swimming and snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters.

If you are a wildlife enthusiast or plan to visit the hill country, the period from July to September is ideal as the weather is cooler and perfect for exploring national parks and tea plantations.

For those seeking to avoid crowds and find better deals, the shoulder seasons of April and November are great options. During these months, you can enjoy relatively good weather and fewer tourists, making it an ideal time for budget travelers.

It is important to note that Sri Lanka is a tropical country, and sudden rain showers can occur at any time of the year. It is always a good idea to pack a light rain jacket or umbrella regardless of the season.

Ultimately, the best time to visit Sri Lanka depends on your preferences and the experiences you seek. Whether you choose to visit during the dry season or the monsoon season, Sri Lanka offers a wealth of beauty and experiences that will leave you with lasting memories.

Getting to Sri Lanka

Getting to Sri Lanka is relatively easy with its well-connected international airports and seaports. The main international airport is Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), located in Katunayake, about 35 kilometers north of Colombo, the capital city.

Many major airlines operate direct flights to Sri Lanka from various destinations around the world. There are also several connecting flights available, making it convenient to reach Sri Lanka from almost anywhere.

Once you arrive at BIA, you can easily access Colombo and other parts of the country via taxi, ride-sharing services, or public transport. The journey from the airport to Colombo takes approximately an hour, depending on traffic.

If you are traveling to Sri Lanka by sea, the country has several ports that cater to international cruise ships and cargo vessels. The main port is the Colombo Port, which is one of the largest in South Asia.

For travelers coming from neighboring countries, such as India or Maldives, there are ferry services available as well. These services operate between Sri Lanka and select ports in India and the Maldives, providing an alternative and scenic way to reach the island.

Once you are in Sri Lanka, domestic air travel is a convenient option for exploring different parts of the country quickly. Domestic airports are located in cities like Colombo, Kandy, and Jaffna, and there are several domestic airlines offering regular flights.

If you prefer overland travel, Sri Lanka has a well-developed road network, making it possible to reach various towns and cities by bus or private car. There are also train services available, which offer a scenic and enjoyable way to travel between major destinations.

When planning your trip to Sri Lanka, it is advisable to check the latest travel advisories and make arrangements in advance to secure your preferred mode of transportation. With multiple options available, getting to and around Sri Lanka is convenient and adds to the overall experience of exploring this beautiful island nation.

Transportation within Sri Lanka

Getting around Sri Lanka is relatively easy, thanks to its well-established transportation network. Whether you prefer to travel by road, rail, or air, there are various options available to suit your needs and preferences.

One of the most popular modes of transportation for both locals and tourists is the extensive bus network. Buses connect almost every corner of the country, making it a convenient and affordable way to travel between cities and towns. There are different types of buses available, ranging from express buses to luxury air-conditioned coaches.

Sri Lanka also has an extensive train network that offers stunning views of the countryside. The train rides in Sri Lanka are not just a means of transportation but also a scenic experience. The journey from Kandy to Ella, for example, is renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, tea plantations, and mountain vistas.

If you prefer a faster mode of transportation, domestic flights are available between major cities. Sri Lanka has several domestic airports, and local airlines operate regular flights to various destinations. This is a convenient option for those who want to save time and skip long road or train journeys.

For shorter distances and exploring local attractions, tuk-tuks are a popular mode of transport. These three-wheeled vehicles are easily available in cities and towns, and they are a fun and adventurous way to get around. Negotiating the fare beforehand is advised to avoid any misunderstandings.

If you prefer more flexibility and convenience, renting a car with a driver is also an option. This allows you to navigate the country at your own pace and visit off-the-beaten-path destinations. However, it is important to note that driving in Sri Lanka requires caution and familiarity with local road conditions and traffic rules.

When traveling to remote areas or national parks, safari jeeps are commonly used to navigate the rugged terrain and spot wildlife. These can be hired through tour operators or at the park entrance.

Overall, transportation within Sri Lanka is well-organized and offers a variety of options to suit different preferences and budgets. Whether you choose the bus, train, plane, tuk-tuk, or hire a car, getting around Sri Lanka is part of the adventure and allows you to explore the country at your own pace.

Accommodation Options

When it comes to accommodation in Sri Lanka, you’ll find a wide range of options to suit all budgets and preferences. From luxury resorts to budget guesthouses, the country offers a diverse range of choices that cater to different travelers.

If you’re looking for ultimate comfort and indulgence, Sri Lanka is home to a number of luxury resorts and boutique hotels. These properties offer world-class amenities, stunning settings, and exceptional service. Whether nestled along pristine beaches, amidst lush tea plantations, or in the heart of ancient cities, these accommodations provide a lavish retreat for relaxation and pampering.

For those seeking a more authentic experience, Sri Lanka’s heritage homes, known as “boutique villas,” offer a unique stay. These beautifully restored ancestral houses provide an opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and history while enjoying modern comforts.

For budget-conscious travelers, there are plenty of guesthouses and budget hotels available throughout the country. These accommodations offer affordable options without compromising on comfort and cleanliness. They are ideal for those who prefer a more local and intimate experience.

In popular tourist destinations, you’ll also find a range of mid-range hotels and resorts that strike a balance between comfort and affordability. These properties offer quality accommodation, convenient locations, and a range of facilities to ensure a pleasant stay.

In recent years, Sri Lanka has seen a rise in eco-lodges and sustainable accommodation options. These properties focus on minimizing their environmental impact and offer an eco-friendly and responsible way to stay. Staying in an eco-lodge allows you to connect with nature while contributing to the conservation efforts of the country.

Another popular accommodation option in Sri Lanka is homestays, where you can stay with a local family and experience their way of life firsthand. This provides an opportunity to learn about the local culture, traditions, and cuisine while enjoying the warm hospitality of a Sri Lankan home.

When planning your accommodation in Sri Lanka, it is advisable to book in advance, especially during the peak tourist season. Research different areas and read reviews to find the best accommodation option that suits your needs and preferences.

Overall, Sri Lanka offers a wide range of accommodation options that cater to every type of traveler. Whether you’re looking for luxury, budget, boutique, or eco-friendly stays, you’ll find the perfect place to rest and recharge during your Sri Lankan adventure.

Top Attractions in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a treasure trove of incredible attractions, ranging from ancient historical sites to stunning natural wonders. Here are some of the top attractions that you should not miss during your visit to this beautiful island:

  • Sigiriya Rock Fortress: Rising majestically from the jungle, Sigiriya is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a must-visit attraction. Climb to the top of the rock and marvel at the ancient ruins and breathtaking views.
  • Golden Temple of Dambulla: This ancient temple complex is renowned for its stunning cave temples adorned with intricately painted frescoes and a vast collection of Buddha statues.
  • Ancient City of Polonnaruwa: Explore the well-preserved ruins of the ancient capital of Polonnaruwa, including the Royal Palace, sacred temples, and colossal stone statues.
  • Temple of the Tooth, Kandy: Visit the sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic in Kandy, believed to house the relic of the tooth of Lord Buddha. Experience the rich cultural heritage and witness traditional rituals and performances.
  • Galle Fort: Step back in time as you wander through the narrow streets of the UNESCO-listed Galle Fort. Admire the Dutch colonial architecture, visit the lighthouse, and browse through charming boutiques and art galleries.
  • Yala National Park: Embark on a wildlife safari in Yala National Park, where you can spot elephants, leopards, sloth bears, and a variety of bird species. It is renowned for having the highest leopard density in the world.
  • Nuwara Eliya: Known as “Little England,” this picturesque hill station offers stunning landscapes of tea plantations, waterfalls, and lush hills. Visit a tea factory, enjoy a scenic train ride, and immerse yourself in the cool climate of this charming town.
  • Adam’s Peak: Take on the challenge of climbing Adam’s Peak, a sacred pilgrimage site for multiple religions. Witness the sunrise from the top and marvel at the panoramic views.
  • Mirissa Beach: Relax on the golden sands of Mirissa Beach and enjoy the serene atmosphere and crystal-clear waters. Take a boat tour and spot dolphins and whales swimming in the ocean.
  • Ella Rock: Hike to the top of Ella Rock and be rewarded with breathtaking views of the surrounding tea plantations, valleys, and waterfalls. The journey itself is a scenic adventure.

These are just a few highlights of the many attractions that Sri Lanka has to offer. The country’s rich history, diverse wildlife, stunning landscapes, and warm hospitality make it a truly unforgettable destination to explore.

Cultural Experiences

Immersing yourself in the cultural fabric of Sri Lanka is an essential part of any visit to this enchanting island. From ancient temples and religious ceremonies to traditional arts and crafts, here are some cultural experiences that will offer you a deeper understanding of Sri Lanka:

  • Visit Sacred Temples: Sri Lanka is home to numerous sacred temples, each with its own unique architectural and cultural significance. Explore iconic temples such as the Temple of the Tooth in Kandy, Gangaramaya Temple in Colombo, and Sri Dalada Maligawa in Anuradhapura.
  • Participate in a Puja Ceremony: Witness or take part in a traditional puja (religious ceremony) at a temple to experience the rhythmic chants, the scent of incense, and the mesmerizing rituals performed by devotees.
  • Explore Ancient Ruins: Discover the ancient cities of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa, both UNESCO World Heritage sites, and explore the ruins of ancient civilizations. Marvel at the monumental stupas, intricate carvings, and ancient monasteries that provide a glimpse into the country’s rich history.
  • Attend a Cultural Show: Enjoy a vibrant cultural show featuring traditional dance performances, fire walking, and traditional music. These shows are a fantastic opportunity to witness the rhythmic movements and colorful costumes that showcase the country’s diverse cultural heritage.
  • Try Sri Lankan Cuisine: Sample the diverse flavors of Sri Lankan cuisine, which is influenced by various cultures. Indulge in traditional dishes like rice and curry, hoppers, string hoppers, and seafood delicacies. Don’t forget to try the mouthwatering variety of tropical fruits.
  • Visit Village Communities: Take a trip to a rural village and engage with the locals to experience the warmth and hospitality of the Sri Lankan people. Learn about their daily life, traditions, and customs, and perhaps even participate in activities such as cooking traditional meals or farming.
  • Explore Art and Craft Villages: Sri Lanka is renowned for its intricate handicrafts, including wood carving, batik, pottery, and handloom textiles. Visit art and craft villages, such as Ambalangoda and Kandy, to observe the skilled artisans at work and perhaps even purchase unique souvenirs to take back home.

These cultural experiences will give you a deeper appreciation for the traditions and customs that have shaped Sri Lanka’s identity. Engage with the locals, embrace their traditions, and create lasting memories as you delve into the vibrant cultural tapestry of this fascinating country.

Wildlife and Nature

Sri Lanka is a paradise for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers, with its diverse ecosystems and abundant wildlife. From national parks teeming with exotic animals to pristine rainforests and breathtaking landscapes, here are some of the wildlife and nature experiences that you can enjoy in Sri Lanka:

  • Yala National Park: Explore the wild wonders of Yala National Park, home to a rich variety of animals, including elephants, leopards, sloth bears, and endemic bird species. Enjoy thrilling jeep safaris that offer a chance to witness these majestic creatures in their natural habitats.
  • Wilpattu National Park: Known for its dense forest and natural lakes, Wilpattu is the largest national park in Sri Lanka. Embark on a safari and encounter leopards, elephants, deer, crocodiles, and an array of bird species in this untamed wilderness.
  • Horton Plains National Park: Trek through the misty landscapes of Horton Plains, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and marvel at the beauty of World’s End, a sheer cliff offering breathtaking views. Keep an eye out for elusive species such as the Sri Lankan sambar deer and purple-faced langur.
  • Sinharaja Forest Reserve: Explore the last remaining primary rainforest in Sri Lanka, Sinharaja Forest Reserve. This UNESCO World Heritage site is a haven for endemic bird species, reptiles, amphibians, and a variety of plant species. Guided walks allow you to discover its incredible biodiversity.
  • Whale Watching in Mirissa: Embark on a thrilling whale watching excursion from Mirissa and witness the magnificence of the gentle giants of the ocean, such as blue whales, sperm whales, and dolphins. This is an unforgettable experience that offers an up-close encounter with marine wildlife.
  • Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage: Visit the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, a sanctuary that cares for and rehabilitates orphaned and injured elephants. Observe these gentle giants up close as they bathe in the river and enjoy feeding times.
  • Minneriya National Park: Known for its “Gathering” of elephants, Minneriya National Park is a hotspot for elephant sightings. The park also offers opportunities to spot other wildlife, including sambar deer, sloth bears, and birds.

These are just a few examples of the incredible wildlife and nature experiences that Sri Lanka has to offer. The country’s commitment to conservation and its diverse range of ecosystems make it a haven for nature enthusiasts and a paradise for wildlife lovers.

Beaches and Coastal Areas

Sri Lanka is blessed with stunning beaches and picturesque coastal areas that offer tranquility, beauty, and a variety of water activities. From golden sand beaches to vibrant coral reefs, here are some of the top beach destinations to explore during your visit:

  • Unawatuna: Located on the southern coast, Unawatuna is known for its crescent-shaped beach, clear turquoise waters, and vibrant coral reefs. Snorkeling, diving, and beachside relaxation are popular activities here.
  • Mirissa: Mirissa is a laid-back coastal town famous for its pristine beaches and whale watching opportunities. Enjoy sunbathing, swimming, and catching spectacular sunsets on the palm-fringed shores.
  • Bentota: Located on the southwest coast, Bentota offers a mix of sandy beaches and serene backwaters. It is a popular destination for water sports like jet skiing, windsurfing, and boat rides along the Bentota River.
  • Arugam Bay: Situated on the east coast, Arugam Bay is known for its beautiful beaches and excellent surf breaks. It attracts surfers from around the world and offers a laid-back atmosphere, perfect for relaxation.
  • Trincomalee: The town of Trincomalee on the east coast is home to stunning beaches and warm azure waters. Nilaveli Beach and Uppuveli Beach are popular spots for swimming, snorkeling, and diving.
  • Kalpitiya: Situated on the west coast, Kalpitiya is known for its pristine beaches, dunes, and lagoons. It is a haven for water sports enthusiasts, offering activities like kite surfing, kayaking, and dolphin watching.
  • Pasikudah: Pasikudah, located on the east coast, boasts a long stretch of shallow waters and soft white sand. It is perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and enjoying water sports.

These are just a few examples of the beautiful beaches and coastal areas that await you in Sri Lanka. Whether you’re looking for relaxation, water sports, or simply a chance to soak in the sun, the beaches of Sri Lanka offer a perfect escape.

Adventure Activities

Sri Lanka is not only a destination for breathtaking landscapes and cultural experiences but also a haven for adventure enthusiasts. From thrilling water sports to adrenaline-pumping treks, here are some of the top adventure activities you can enjoy in Sri Lanka:

  • Whitewater Rafting: Experience the rush of navigating through fast-flowing rivers and challenging rapids. The Kitulgala region is known for its excellent whitewater rafting opportunities, offering an exhilarating adventure amidst stunning natural surroundings.
  • Surfing: Head to the southern coast, especially places like Arugam Bay, Weligama, and Mirissa, to catch some waves. Sri Lanka offers surfing spots suitable for all skill levels, making it a popular destination for beginners and seasoned surfers alike.
  • Hiking and Trekking: Lace up your boots and explore the stunning landscapes of Sri Lanka on foot. From the picturesque tea plantations of Ella to the challenging trails of Knuckles Mountain Range, there are plenty of options for all levels of hikers and trekkers.
  • Zip-lining: Experience the thrill of flying through the treetops on a zip-line adventure. The lush forests of Kithulgala and Ella provide stunning backdrops as you zip across the canopy.
  • Rock Climbing: Test your strength and agility by scaling rocky cliffs in Sri Lanka. The central region, including places like Sigiriya and Knuckles Mountain Range, offers excellent rock climbing opportunities.
  • Wildlife Safaris: Embark on an exciting safari adventure in one of Sri Lanka’s national parks. With a guide, spot majestic elephants, elusive leopards, and a variety of other wildlife in their natural habitats.
  • Hot Air Ballooning: Soar above the scenic landscapes of Sri Lanka in a hot air balloon for a truly extraordinary experience. Enjoy panoramic views of lush greenery, rolling hills, and historical sites.
  • Scuba Diving and Snorkeling: Discover the vibrant underwater world surrounding Sri Lanka. Head to popular diving spots like Hikkaduwa, Trincomalee, and Pigeon Island, where you can explore colorful coral reefs, encounter marine life, and swim with turtles.

With its diverse landscapes and thrilling activities, Sri Lanka offers endless opportunities for adventure enthusiasts. Whether you’re seeking an adrenaline rush or a chance to explore the natural wonders of the island, you’re sure to find an adventure that suits your taste.

Shopping and Souvenirs

Shopping in Sri Lanka is not just about buying souvenirs; it’s an immersive experience that allows you to explore the country’s vibrant culture and craftsmanship. From traditional handicrafts to high-quality tea and gemstones, here are some shopping highlights you can indulge in during your visit:

  • Handicrafts and Batik: Sri Lanka is renowned for its intricate handicrafts, including wooden masks, hand-woven textiles, and colorful batik fabrics. Visit local markets and artisan workshops to witness the craftsmen at work and purchase unique pieces as a memento of your trip.
  • Gems and Jewelry: Sri Lanka is famous for its precious and semi-precious gemstones, especially sapphires. Explore reputable gem stores to find beautifully crafted jewelry that can make for a valuable and lasting souvenir.
  • Tea and Spices: Sri Lanka is one of the largest tea producers globally, and you can find a vast range of high-quality teas to take back home. From aromatic Ceylon tea to herbal infusions, visit tea plantations or specialty tea shops to find the perfect blend. Don’t forget to also explore the diverse range of fragrant spices that add flavor to Sri Lankan cuisine.
  • Art and Antiques: Art enthusiasts can browse through art galleries and antique shops to find exquisite artwork, traditional masks, and unique collectibles. Authentic antique pieces require proper documentation for export, so ensure compliance with customs regulations if purchasing such items.
  • Handmade Jewelry and Accessories: Sri Lanka is a treasure trove for handcrafted jewelry and accessories. Explore local shops or designer boutiques to find intricate silverware, beaded jewelry, and fashionable accessories crafted by local artisans.
  • Spices and Ayurvedic Products: Sri Lanka is known for its ayurvedic traditions, and you can find a wide range of herbal remedies, oils, and beauty products. Visit herbal gardens or Ayurvedic centers to purchase authentic products that promote wellness and health.

When shopping in Sri Lanka, it’s always a good idea to compare prices, check the authenticity of goods, and purchase from reputable sellers. You can also visit government-run handicraft centers and authorized stores to ensure fair trade and genuine products.

Remember to be mindful of customs regulations and restrictions regarding the export of certain items, particularly antiques and wildlife products. Familiarize yourself with the appropriate guidelines to ensure a hassle-free shopping experience.

Bringing back a piece of Sri Lanka through shopping and souvenirs allows you to cherish the memories of your trip and support the local artisans and industries that make the country’s cultural richness shine through their creations.

Food and Drinks

Sri Lankan cuisine is a delightful fusion of flavors influenced by various cultures and traditions. From aromatic spices to fresh seafood and tropical fruits, here are some must-try dishes and beverages to explore during your culinary journey in Sri Lanka:

  • Rice and Curry: Rice and curry is the staple dish of Sri Lanka, consisting of a mound of fluffy rice served with an array of flavorful curries. Each curry, be it vegetable, seafood, or meat-based, is infused with aromatic spices like cinnamon, cardamom, and curry leaves.
  • Hoppers: Hoppers are a popular Sri Lankan breakfast dish made from a fermented rice flour batter. These thin, crispy pancakes with a soft center are often served with sambol (a spicy condiment) or with an egg cracked into the hoppers.
  • Kottu Roti: Kottu roti is a unique Sri Lankan street food made by stir-frying a combination of chopped roti (flatbread), vegetables, meat, and spices on a hot griddle. The rhythmic chopping sound of the roti being cooked is a familiar symphony in urban areas.
  • Seafood: Being an island nation, Sri Lanka boasts a bounty of fresh seafood. Indulge in succulent prawns, crabs, lobsters, and a variety of fish prepared in various delectable styles, such as grilled, curried, or butter-fried.
  • Hoppers: Sri Lanka is renowned for its aromatic tea production. Visit a tea plantation in the highlands and witness the tea-making process, from plucking the leaves to the final infusion. Sip on a cup of hot Ceylon tea while enjoying the serenity of the tea gardens.
  • Fruit Juices and King Coconuts: Sri Lanka is abundant in tropical fruits, and you have to try the refreshing fruit juices made from mango, pineapple, papaya, and watermelon. Additionally, enjoy the natural sweetness of a king coconut, a variety of coconut with a soft, jelly-like flesh and sweet water.
  • Wadiya (Street Food): Sri Lanka offers a plethora of street food options to tantalize your taste buds. From piping hot samosas and vadais (deep-fried lentil fritters) to crispy roti with spicy fillings, explore the vibrant street food scene and savor the diverse flavors.
  • Tropical Desserts: End your meal on a sweet note with traditional Sri Lankan desserts. Indulge in delicacies like creamy wattalappam (coconut custard), caramelized banana fritters, or refreshing curd and treacle (a sweet syrup made from the sap of the kitul palm).

Exploring the local food scene in Sri Lanka is best done by venturing into local eateries and street-side stalls, where you can savor authentic and flavorful dishes. Don’t hesitate to ask the locals for their recommendations and try the lesser-known regional specialties.

While enjoying the local cuisine, keep in mind the spice levels can be quite intense for those unaccustomed to spicy food. Feel free to request milder versions of dishes if you prefer a less spicy experience.

With its vibrant flavors and delicious aromas, Sri Lankan cuisine offers a culinary adventure that is sure to satisfy both your palate and your appetite. So, be sure to embark on a gastronomic journey and explore the diverse and mouthwatering food and drink options Sri Lanka has to offer.

Health and Safety Tips

Ensuring your health and safety during your trip to Sri Lanka is crucial for a smooth and enjoyable experience. Here are some essential health and safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Travel Insurance: Before traveling to Sri Lanka, make sure you have comprehensive travel insurance that covers medical emergencies, trip cancellations, and lost belongings.
  • Health Precautions: Visit your doctor or a travel health clinic well in advance to get up-to-date on vaccinations and discuss any necessary medications, such as anti-malarial medication for certain regions.
  • Water and Food Safety: Drink bottled water or boiled and filtered water to avoid waterborne diseases. Be cautious with street food; choose vendors with clean preparation areas and opt for thoroughly cooked or peeled fruits and vegetables.
  • Sun Protection: Sri Lanka has a tropical climate, so protect yourself from the sun by wearing sunscreen with a high SPF, a hat, sunglasses, and lightweight, breathable clothing.
  • Mosquito Protection: Mosquito-borne diseases like dengue fever are prevalent in Sri Lanka. Use mosquito repellents, wear long sleeves and pants, and consider staying in accommodations with mosquito nets or air conditioning.
  • Safe Transportation: Choose licensed and reputable transportation providers and follow safety instructions while using public transportation. Avoid traveling at night, particularly in remote areas.
  • Respecting Local Customs: Sri Lanka has a rich cultural heritage, so dress modestly when visiting religious sites and respect local customs and traditions.
  • Emergency Numbers: Save important contact numbers, such as the local emergency services (Police, Ambulance) and your embassy or consulate, in case of any emergency.
  • Personal Belongings: Take precautions to secure your personal belongings, including keeping valuables in a hotel safe, using a money belt, and being cautious of your surroundings.
  • Weather Conditions: Sri Lanka can experience heavy rainfall and natural disasters like floods and landslides during the monsoon seasons. Stay informed about weather conditions and follow instructions from local authorities.

It is always wise to stay updated on travel advisories and follow any specific guidelines and recommendations from your government or relevant authorities regarding travel to Sri Lanka.

By taking these health and safety precautions, you can ensure a worry-free and memorable trip to Sri Lanka, focusing on exploring the incredible sights, immersing in the culture, and creating unforgettable experiences.

Etiquette and Cultural Norms

When visiting Sri Lanka, it is important to be aware of the local etiquette and cultural norms to show respect for the country’s traditions and customs. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • Dress Modestly: When visiting religious sites, it is important to dress modestly, covering your shoulders and knees. This applies to both men and women.
  • Remove Footwear: When entering temples, homes, and certain shops, it is customary to remove your footwear as a sign of respect. Look for cues from locals or signage indicating the expectation.
  • Greet with Respect: Sri Lankans greet each other with a “Ayubowan” (May you live long) or “Vanakkam” (Hello). Use a gentle handshake or a slight bow when meeting someone for the first time.
  • Use Right Hand for Gestures: Sri Lankans generally use the right hand for eating, giving and receiving items, and handshakes. Avoid using your left hand for these activities, as it is considered unclean.
  • Show Courtesy to Elders: Respect for elders is highly valued in Sri Lankan culture. Use appropriate titles when addressing older individuals and offer them precedence in seating or in queues.
  • Avoid Public Displays of Affection: Public displays of affection, such as hugging and kissing, are not commonly practiced or appreciated in Sri Lankan culture. It is best to show restraint in public settings.
  • Observe Religious Customs: When visiting temples, follow the guidelines provided, such as removing headwear, refraining from taking photographs where prohibited, and participating respectfully in rituals.
  • Ask Permission for Photography: Always ask for permission before photographing individuals, especially monks or religious ceremonies. Some locations may have restrictions on photography, so be mindful of signage and instructions.
  • Respect Buddhist Traditions: When encountering Buddhist monks, show reverence by keeping a respectful distance and refraining from physical contact. Women should avoid direct contact or giving items directly to monks.
  • Be Mindful of Cultural Sensitivities: For conservative communities, it’s advisable to dress modestly and avoid displaying excessive skin in public areas to respect their cultural sensitivities.

By being aware of and adhering to these etiquette guidelines, you can show respect for the local culture and enhance your interactions with the warm and welcoming people of Sri Lanka.

Money and Currency

Understanding the local currency and the financial aspects of your trip is essential when visiting Sri Lanka. Here’s some helpful information about money and currency in the country:

  • Currency: The official currency of Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR). It is denoted by the symbol “රු” or “Rs.”
  • Availability of Currency: You can obtain Sri Lankan Rupees through currency exchange services at international airports, banks, and authorized money changers throughout the country. ATMs are widely available in most towns and cities.
  • Credit Cards and Debit Cards: Credit and debit cards are widely accepted in major establishments like hotels, restaurants, and retail outlets. Visa and Mastercard are more commonly accepted, while American Express and Diners Club may have limited acceptance.
  • ATMs and Cash Withdrawals: ATMs are the most convenient way to access cash. They are available in cities and towns across Sri Lanka. Inform your bank beforehand about your travel plans to avoid any issues with card usage abroad.
  • Tipping: While tipping is not mandatory, it is customary to leave a small amount of tip for good service. In restaurants, a 10% service charge is often added to the bill. If not, a small tip is appreciated.
  • Exchange Rates: The exchange rates may vary, so it is advisable to check the current rates before exchanging money. Banks and authorized money changers usually offer competitive rates.
  • Carrying Sufficient Cash: While credit cards are widely accepted, it is advisable to carry some cash, especially when visiting rural areas or smaller establishments where card acceptance may be limited.
  • Currency Exchange Receipts: Ensure that you retain currency exchange receipts to facilitate re-conversion of any unused Sri Lankan Rupees back to your home currency upon departure.
  • Counterfeit Notes: Be cautious of counterfeit currency. Familiarize yourself with the security features of Sri Lankan banknotes to verify their authenticity.
  • Local Expenses: Sri Lanka is generally an affordable destination, but the cost of accommodation, food, and transportation may vary depending on the region and the level of luxury you choose.

It’s always a good idea to have a mix of payment options when traveling, including cash and cards, for flexibility and convenience. Keep your money and valuables secure, and inform your bank about any travel plans to avoid any disruptions to your card usage.

By being informed about the currency and money-related aspects, you can ensure a hassle-free financial experience during your visit to Sri Lanka.

Communication and Internet Access

Staying connected and having access to communication services is important when traveling in Sri Lanka. Here’s what you need to know about communication and internet access in the country:

  • Mobile Networks: Sri Lanka has several mobile network operators, including Dialog, Mobitel, and Etisalat, offering reliable coverage across the country. You can easily purchase a local SIM card at the airport or from mobile network provider outlets.
  • International Roaming: If you prefer to use your existing mobile number, check with your service provider regarding international roaming facilities and associated charges before arriving in Sri Lanka. This option may be more expensive compared to purchasing a local SIM card.
  • Internet Access: Most hotels, resorts, and cafes in popular tourist areas offer Wi-Fi access for guests. Some may charge for usage, while others provide it as a complimentary service. Free Wi-Fi zones are also available in certain public places.
  • Internet Cafes: If you need internet access for a short duration, you can find internet cafes in major towns and cities. These cafes usually charge an hourly rate for internet usage.
  • Public Telephones: Public telephones are available, and you can use prepaid calling cards to make domestic and international calls. These cards can be purchased from shops or kiosks.
  • Messaging Apps: Utilizing messaging apps like WhatsApp, Viber, or Skype can be a convenient and cost-effective way to communicate with friends and family internationally via an active internet connection.
  • Emergency Services: The emergency hotline in Sri Lanka is 119, which can be used to contact the police. For medical emergencies, dial 110 or visit the nearest hospital.

It is always recommended to have a backup communication plan through various channels, especially in case of emergencies or when traveling to more remote areas with limited network coverage.

With the availability of mobile networks and internet connectivity, staying connected and accessing information is generally hassle-free, allowing you to share your experiences and communicate with ease during your journey in Sri Lanka.

Travel Tips and Recommendations

Here are some travel tips and recommendations to make your trip to Sri Lanka even more enjoyable:

  • Plan in Advance: Research and plan your itinerary in advance to make the most of your time in Sri Lanka. Understand the distances between destinations and consider the best modes of transportation.
  • Check the Weather: Sri Lanka has a tropical climate with variations across regions. Check the weather conditions for the specific areas you plan to visit and pack accordingly.
  • Stay Hydrated: Due to the warm climate, it’s important to stay hydrated. Carry a reusable water bottle and drink plenty of water to keep yourself hydrated throughout the day.
  • Try Local Cuisine: Sri Lankan cuisine offers a rich variety of flavors. Don’t miss the opportunity to try local dishes and explore different street food options to savor the authentic flavors of the country.
  • Respect Nature and Wildlife: When visiting national parks and wildlife sanctuaries, follow the instructions provided by park authorities and respect the natural environment. Do not feed or disturb the wildlife in any way.
  • Stay Sun Safe: Apply sunscreen regularly, wear a hat, and protect yourself from the sun to prevent sunburn and heat-related illnesses. Seek shade during the hottest hours of the day.
  • Be Mindful of Cultural Sensitivities: Respect local customs, traditions, and dress codes. Be mindful of religious and cultural sites, maintaining a respectful demeanor and following any guidelines provided.
  • Keep Essential Items Handy: Carry a copy of your passport, visa, and travel insurance documents. Keep emergency contact information and the address of your accommodations easily accessible.
  • Stay Alert and Keep Valuables Secure: Maintain situational awareness, especially in crowded places and tourist areas. Keep your belongings secure and be cautious of pickpocketing.
  • Explore Off-The-Beaten-Path: While popular tourist sites are a must-visit, consider exploring lesser-known destinations to discover hidden gems and have more authentic cultural experiences.

Remember to be open-minded, embrace the local customs, and approach your trip with a spirit of adventure. Sri Lanka offers a rich tapestry of experiences, and by following these tips, you can make the most of your journey and create unforgettable memories.

Congratulations! You are now equipped with a comprehensive guide to navigate your Sri Lanka adventure. From exploring ancient ruins and immersing yourself in the vibrant culture to indulging in delicious cuisine and embracing breathtaking natural beauty, Sri Lanka offers a plethora of unforgettable experiences.

Remember to plan your trip in advance, considering visa requirements, the best time to visit, and transportation options. Immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage by visiting temples, attending traditional performances, and engaging with the warm and friendly locals.

Take advantage of the stunning beaches and coastal areas for relaxation or adventure activities such as surfing, diving, or whale watching. Explore the incredible wildlife and nature through safaris, hikes, and explorations of national parks. Don’t miss the chance to shop for unique souvenirs, try local cuisine, and immerse yourself in the vibrant markets.

Traveling responsibly, respecting local customs and traditions, and taking necessary health and safety precautions will ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip. Stay connected with communication services and embrace the diverse culinary delights Sri Lanka has to offer.

So pack your bags with excitement and embark on a journey of a lifetime in the teardrop-shaped island of Sri Lanka. Discover the timeless beauty, immerse in the rich culture, and create memories that will last a lifetime. Get ready to make the most of your Sri Lanka travel adventure!

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  • Sri Lanka Tourist Attractions
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Sri Lanka Tourism Strategic Plane 2017 - 2020

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Anuradhapura

Bundala Nation Park

Hambanthota.

Horton Plains

Knuckles Range

Nuwara Eliy

Trincomalee

Yala National Park

Polonnaruwa

Wilpattu National Park

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Anuradhapura is one of the ancient capitals of Sri Lanka, famous for its well-preserved ruins of ancient Lankan civilization. From the 4th century BC, it was the capital of Sri Lanka until the beginning of the 11th century AD. During this period it remained one of the most stable and durable centers of political power and urban life in South Asia. The ancient city, considered sacred to the Buddhist world, is today surrounded by monasteries covering an area of over sixteen square miles (40 km²). Anuradhapura is also significant in Hindu legend as the fabled capital of the Asura King Ravana in the Ramayana.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Arugam Bay is a bay situated on the Indian Ocean in the dry zone of Sri Lanka's southeast coast. The bay is located 320 km due east of Colombo. It is a popular surfing and tourist destination. Due to its popularity among low budget tourists, the area has managed a slow recovery. By private initiatives only. The main road through town has still not been repaved. Work is in progress to improve road access to the area. But in Arugam Bay itself, little has changed. As late as May, 2009 no help has been received from any official source or international organizations. An exception is uncoordinated support for fishing folk as well as many school rebuilding programs, resulting in a continuation to provide only separatist schools for each community.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Adam's Peak

Adam's Peak is a 2,243 metres (7,359 ft) tall conical mountain located in central Sri Lanka. It is well-known for the Sri Pada "sacred footprint", a 1.8 m rock formation near the summit, in Buddhist tradition held to be the footprint of Buddha, in Hindu tradition that of Shiva and in Muslim tradition that of Adam.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Batticaloa is a city in the Eastern province of Sri Lanka. It is the seat of the Eastern University of Sri Lanka. It is on the east coast, 69 miles south by south east of Trincomalee, and is situated on an island.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

A Sri Lankan coastal city famous for golden beaches, Bentota is situated on the southern coastal tip of the Galle District of the Southern Province . The town is a popular tourist attraction. It is especially famous among the foreign tourists. The name comes from a mythical story which dates back to kings time saying a demon called Bem ruled this river ( tota = river bank. Bentota hosts a handful of world proclaimed hotels. It is the hosting land for the famous Sri Lankan Jeweler Aida. Bentota also delivers an ancient art of healing called Ayurveda . Bentota is also famous for its production in Toddy. An alcoholic beverage made out of cocunut nectar. The city's population is estimated to be between 25,000-50,000.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Beruwela, is a small resort town in the south western coastal belt of Sri Lanka. The name Beruwela is derived from the Sinhalese word Beruwela (the place where the sail is lowered). It marks the spot for the first Muslim settlement on the island, established by Arab traders around the 8th century AD. A large population of Sri Lankan Moors, many of them are gem merchants, still live in the town-- particularly in the "China Fort". Msjid-ul-Abrar , a landmark of Beruwela and Sri Lanka's oldest mosque, was built by Arab traders on a rocky peninsula overlooking the town.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Bundala National Park

Located about fifteen kilometers east of Hambantota Bundala National Park is one of Sri Lanka's foremost destinations for birdwatchers, protecting an important area of coastal wetland famous for its abundant aquatic (and other) birdlife. The park is also home to significant populations of elephants, Marsh & estuarine crocodiles, turtles & other fauna, including the leopard. Stretching along the coast east of Hambantota, Bundala National Park is ideal for instant gratification: in a four hour jeep ride, we can see elephants, 8ft crocs, giant squirrels & flamingoes. Afternoon safaris in the dry season (December - May) provide visitors with the best chance of seeing the wildlife.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

The name "Colombo", first introduced by the Portuguese in 1505, is believed to be derived from the classical Sinhalese name Kolon thota, meaning "port on the river Kelani". It has also been suggested that the name may be derived from the Sinhalese name Kola-amba-thota which means "Harbour with leafy mango trees". Due to its large harbour and its strategic position along the East-West sea trade routes, Colombo was known to ancient traders 2,000 years ago. However it was only made the capital of the island when Sri Lanka was ceded to the British Empire in 1815, and its status as capital was retained when the nation became independent in 1948. In 1978, when administrative functions were moved to Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, Colombo was designated as the commercial capital of Sri Lanka.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Major attractions of the city include the largest and best preserved cave temple complex of Sri Lanka, and the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium, famous for being built in just 167 days. The city also boasts to have the largest rose quartz mountain range in South Asia, and the Iron wood forest, or Namal Uyana. Ibbankatuwa prehistoric burial site near Dhambulla cave temple complexes is the latest archaeological site of significant historical importance found in Dambulla, which is located within 3 kilometers of the cave temples providing evidence on presence of indigenous civilisations long before the arrival of Indian influence on the Island nation.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Ella is blessed with some of the most beautiful views, you could find in Sri Lanka. Only 8 km from Bandarawela, this small town is used as a base for plenty of trekking expeditions to the surrounding countryside. A taste of the breathtaking scenery of Ella could be had, if you just walk into the Garden of the Grand Ella Motel (Formerly Ella Rest House), where you seem to be standing at the edge of the world, and everything around you seems to disappear at your feet. Another fine view is from the Ambiente Hotel, where the wide doorway, opens out to the mountains, creating a dramatic cinematic like experience, on entry. Some of the places you could see in Ella are the Ella Gap, Ravana Ella Falls, Little Adam's Peak and Bambaragala Peak among the other many varied pleasant walks with stunning scenery.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Galle"Gaul", and in Sinhalese IPA: [ɡaːlːə]) is a town situated on the southwestern tip of Sri Lanka, 119 km from Colombo. Galle was known as Gimhathiththa before the arrival of the Portuguese in the 16th century, when it was the main port on the island. Galle reached the height of its development in the 18th century, during the Dutch colonial period. The major river is Gin River Gin Ganga which starts from Gongala Kanda and passing villages such as Neluwa, Nagoda, Baddegama, Thelikada, Wakwella and kisses the sea at Ginthota. In Wakwella over the river there is Wakwella Bridge which is the longest bridge in Sri Lanka.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Hambantota is a rural town in southeastern coastal area of Sri Lanka. It is also the capital of the Hambantota District in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Hikkaduwa is a small town on the south coast of Sri Lanka. It is located in the Southern Province, about 20 km north-west of Galle. Hikkaduwa is famous for its beach and corals. Villages affected were Telwatta, Paraliya, Dodanduwa, Kahawa, Rathgama. The place is on the way from Colombo to Galle on the famous Galle road. It is primarily a tourist destination, and serves as a great beach with options to surf, snorkel and enjoy the sun.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Horton Plains National Park "Maha-Eliya" in Sinhala, is a national park in the highlands of Sri Lanka. It lies at a height of more than 2,000 m in the central highlands, and its altitude means that it has a much cooler and more windy climate than the lowlands of Sri Lanka, with a mean annual temperature of 16 °C rather than the 26 °C of the coasts. The area was named in 1834 after Lady Anne Horton, wife of Sir Robert Wilmot-Horton, then-governor of Ceylon.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Jaffna or Yazhpanam is the capital city of the Northern Province, Sri Lanka. Most of the residents of Jaffna are Sri Lankan Tamils with a presence of Sri Lankan Moors and Portuguese Burghers . Almost all Sri Lankan Muslims were driven off from Jaffna by the LTTE in the 1990s, as a result of the ethnic conflict which started in the 1970s [1] which leaves Jaffna exclusively Tamil, apart from the military personnel.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Kalkudah or Kalkuda (Pronounced Kal-Kuda, Tamil translation rock-bay) is a coastal resort town located about 35 kilometers northwest of Batticaloa, Batticaloa District, Sri Lanka. It used to be a popular tourist destination. Pasikudah and Kalkudah are located few kilometers apart

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Despite its natural beauty, the western peninsular area of KALPITIYA in the Puttalam district of Sri Lanka is remarkably untouched by tourism. But for those lucky enough to visit, there's a plethora of things to see and do! With the small close-knit fishing community dominating the lives of the local people, visitors can get a real insight into working life away from the city. After watching the night fishing boats return in the morning, a visit to one of the fish markets offers the opportunity to choose the evening meal direct from the fresh catch! The Dutch Fort and St Peter's Kerk church in the town itself are interesting examples of Sri Lanka's rich history and colonial past. Leisurely boat rides up the lagoon and canoe trips down the river are a pleasant way of exploring the coastline, whilst 4WD jeep rides along the deserted sand dunes between the ocean and the lagoon offer a unique way of watching the colourful evening sunsets.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Kandy in Sinhala, pronounced is the English name for the city of Maha Nuvara (Senkadagalapura) in the centre of Sri Lanka. It is the capital of the Central Province and Kandy District. It lies in the midst of hills in the Kandy Valley which crosses an area of tropical plantations, mainly tea. Kandy is one of the most scenic cities in Sri Lanka. Kandy is of both an administrative and religious city. It is the capital of the Central Province and also of the administrative district of Kandy.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Katunayake a town is situated on the west coast of the island of Sri Lanka near Negombo and close to the commercial capital of Colombo. It is the site of Bandaranaike International Airport, the primary international air gateway to Sri Lanka. With the change of government in 1977 and the introduction of the open economy policy a large area was allocated to create a free trade zone. This created a large amount of job opportunities for the local youth and has contributed substantially towards the country's economy.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Kitulgala is a small town in the west of Sri Lanka. It is in the wet zone rainforest, which gets two monsoons each year, and is one of the wettest places in the country. Nevertheless, it comes alive in the first three months of the year, especially in February, the driest month. The Academy Award-winning "The Bridge on the River Kwai" was filmed on the Kelani River near Kitulgala, although nothing remains now except the concrete foundations for the bridge Kitulgala is also a base for white-water rafting, which starts a few kilometres upstream.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

The Knuckles Mountain Range lies in central Sri Lanka, north-east of the city of Kandy. The range takes its name from a series of recumbent folds and peaks in the west of the massif which resemble the knuckles of clenched fist when viewed from certain locations in the Kandy District. Whilst this name was assigned by early British surveyors, the Sinhalese residents have traditionally referred to the area as Dumbara Kanduvetiya meaning mist-laden mountain range (Cooray, 1984). The entire area is characterised by its striking landscapes often robed in thick layers of cloud but in addition to its aesthetic value the range is of great scientific interest. It is a climatic microcosm of the rest of Sri Lanka.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Mannar Island is part of Mannar District, Sri Lanka. It is linked to the rest of Sri Lanka by a causeway.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Matara historically belongs to the area called Ruhana, one of the three kingdoms in Sri Lanka (Thun Sinhalaya). First Indians who arrived to the island country according to the Mahawansa settled in the area, along the banks of Nilwala river. Matara was ruled by Sinhala kings for thousands of years and this is evident by the ancient temples and shrines built by them such as temples in Dondra (Devinuwara) and Weherahena. The temple in the middle of the town is also built by ancient kings and now it is a very popular sacred place among the Buddhists in the area. In 16th and 18th centuries Matara was ruled by Portuguese and Dutch respectively.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Minneriya is a small town in Sri Lanka, and is famous for two things , for the great Minneriya lake build by King Mahasen and for the Minneriya wildlife sanctuary which is a hot spot for safari lovers because of the abandons of Elephants. Furthermore it is situated near Habarana which have some high class hotels for tourists and some famous world heritage sites like Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa and Sigiriya which are relatively close to Minneriya.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Negombo is a town of about 65,000, approximately 37 km north of Colombo, in Sri Lanka. It is located at the mouth of the Negombo lagoon, about 7 km from the Bandaranaike International Airport. Negombo has a small port, and its economy is mainly based on tourism and its centuries-old fishing industry, though it also produces cinnamon, ceramics, and brass ware.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Nilaveli is a coastal resort town located about 20 km North-West of Trincomalee, Trincomalee District, Sri Lanka. It used to be a popular tourist destination.

Nuwara Eliya meaning "city on the plain (table land)" or "city of light", is a town in Sri Lanka. It is located at an altitude of 1,868 m (6,128 ft) in the central highlands and is considered one of the most important locations for Tea production in Sri Lanka. The town is overlooked by Pidurutalagala, the highest mountain in Sri Lanka.

Pasikudah or Pasikuda is a coastal resort town located about 35 kilometers northwest of Batticaloa, Batticaloa District, Sri Lanka. It used to be a popular tourist destination, Pasikudah and Kalkudah are located few km apart.

The Pinnewela Elephant Orphanage is situated northwest of the town of Kegalle, halfway between the present capital Colombo and the ancient royal residence Kandy in the hills of central Sri Lanka. It was established in 1975 by the Sri Lanka wildlife department in a 25-acre coconut property near the Maha Oya river. The orphanage was originally founded in order to afford care and protection to the many orphaned elephants found in the jungle. As of 2008, there are about 84 elephants.

The second most ancient of Sri Lanka's kingdoms, Polonnaruwa was first declared the capital city by King Vijayabahu I, who defeated the Chola invaders in 1070 CE to reunite the country once more under a local leader.

The history of this dry zone district goes back to the arrival of North Indian Prince Vijaya, 2500 years ago in Tammanna in the coastal belt above Puttalam. This happened when his vessel was washed ashore. Thonigala the homeland of Kuweni is deep in the district. The name "Puttalam" may be a modification of in Tamil Uppuththalam , i.e, Uppu means Salt and Thalam means the place where salt production. So finally the name came Puttalam.

Ratnapura is the name of the provincial capital of Sabaragamuwa Province of Sri Lanka and the Ratnapura District in which the town is situated. Some say the modern name is derived from the Portuguese name Rapadura for jaggery, the palm candy produced traditionally in this region, but the more common explanation in Sri Lanka is that it comes from the Sinhala "ratna" meaning gems and "pura" meaning city. Ratnapura is also spelled as Rathnapura. Located some 101 km south east of Colombo, it is the centre of a long-established industry of precious stone mining including rubies, sapphires, and other gems. Apart from gem mining, the town is known for rice and fruit cultivations.

Sigiriya (Lion's rock) is an ancient rock fortress and castle/palace ruin situated in the central Matale District of Sri Lanka, surrounded by the remains of an extensive network of gardens, reservoirs, and other structures. It is a popular tourist destination, also known for its ancient paintings (frescos), very similar to those in the Ajanta Caves of India. The Sigiraya was built during the reign of King Kassapa I (AD 477 – 495), and it is one of the seven World Heritage Sites of Sri Lanka.

Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a national park in Sri Lanka. It is of international significance and has been designated a Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The hilly virgin rainforest, part of the Sri Lanka lowland rain forests ecoregion, was saved from the worst of commercial logging by its inaccessibility, and was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988. The reserve's name translates as Kingdom of the Lion.

Trincomalee is a port city on the east coast of Sri Lanka, about 110 miles northeast of Kandy. The city is built on a peninsula, which divides the inner and outer harbours. It is one of the main centers of Tamil speaking culture on the island. Historically referred to as Gokanna, or Gokarna it has been a sea port that has played a major role in maritime and international trading history of Sri Lanka.

Unawatuna is a beach resort, located on the southern coast of Sri Lanka. Described as most wonderful beach location by the nature, Unawatuna is one of the best Scuba Diving Locations in Sri Lanka. You can enjoy the beach, Scuba Diving, Surfing and Sea Food in Sri Lankan Style. The Jungle Beach, Roomassagla Hills, Kathaluwa Temple, Galle Fort are interesting places to visit.

Weligama is a fishing town in Matara district on the southern coast of Sri Lanka. The term Weligama literally means `Sandy Village' which refers to the area's sandy sweep bay. Situated at a distance of 143 km from Colombo, Weligama is a popular tourist destination and hosts several boutique hotels. It is most famous for its distinct stilt fishermen and an off shore islet known as Taprobane, where a dream house of French Count de Maunay was built.

Wilpattu National Park is a park located on the island of Sri Lanka. The unique feature of this park is the existence of “Willus” (Natural lakes) - Natural, sand-rimmed water basins or depressions that fill with rainwater. Located in the Northwest coast lowland dry zone of Sri Lanka. The park is located 30km west Anuradhapura and located 26 km north of Puttalam (approximately 180 km north of Colombo). The park is 131, 693 hectares and ranges from 0 to 152 meters above sea level. Nearly sixty lakes (Willu) and tanks are found spread throughout Wilpattu. Wilpattu is one of the largest and oldest National Parks in Sri Lanka. Wilpattu is among the top national parks world renowned for its Leopard (Panthera pardus kotiya) population. The Leopard population in Wilpattu is still not yet known.

Yala National Park is a national park in Sri Lanka. The reserve covers 979 km², although only the original 141 km² are open to the public. It was established in 1894 as a Game Sanctuary. Much of the reserve is parkland, but it also contains jungle, beaches, freshwater lakes and rivers and scrubland. The latter zone is punctuated with enormous rocky outcrops. The range of habitats give rise to a good range of wildlife.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

  • Attractions
  • Trips & Itineraries

Sri Lanka Travel Guide

sri lanka tourist attractions list

In recent years, the Sri Lanka Tourism industry has expanded significantly. Sri Lanka travel is renowned for its beautiful beaches, verdant landscapes, historic ruins, Many more things to do and lively culture. Although Sri Lanka is a year-round destination, the ideal months are between December and March because of the dry, bright weather. Millions of tourists visit Sri Lanka yearly due to its numerous tourist attractions. This travelogue will offer helpful advice and details if you consider travelling to Sri Lanka.

Places to Visit in Sri Lanka  

The island nation of Sri Lanka is home to stunning, breathtaking natural, historical, and cultural zones, including all eight of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It also has breathtaking landscapes, rolling peaks, lush forests, tea greens, wildlife, and sandy beaches. Sri Lankan people make your vacation unforgettable with warm welcomes and genuine smiles. Thus there is no reason why travelling to Sri Lanka alone, with family, or with friends would be unsatisfactory. Most parts of Sri Lanka have tropical temperatures between 27 and 30 degrees Celsius. The most tranquil and temperate area is the Hill Country in the centre, and Nuwara Eliya, with a mean average temperature of 16°C, rounds out the top three. A mild climate of 16°C or less also prevails in other highland locations.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Sri Lanka’s Top Tourist Locations

Galle, in Sri Lanka, is the most popular destination for foreign tourists because of its noteworthy colonial exhibits, sun-bleached coastlines, and rivers teeming with animals. However, Galle Fort is one of Sri Lanka’s most alluring tourist destinations. Since 1988, UNESCO has recognised it as a World Heritage Site for the Old Town of Galle and its Fortifications. Hence, we’ve provided a list of  25 Galle attractions  for you to check off your bucket list.

Colombo has developed into a well-liked tourist destination, offering a variety of social, historical, and nightlife activities. Colombo is one of Sri Lanka’s major cities and the most populous city on the island. Colombo was frequently well-known for its natural harbour. The village was on a port next to an early East-West maritime commerce route. In 1505, the Portuguese made their first foray into Colombo, and the city soon became a focal point for East-West social influences. In 1815, Colombo was designated as Sri Lanka’s capital by British colonial authority. Subsequently, Sri Lanka’s administrative centre was relocated to the adjacent neighbourhood city of Sri Jayewardenepura Kotte, while Colombo continued to serve as the nation’s financial and commercial hub. With this list of the Top Colombo attractions , you can be ready to explore this charming city.

The last Singhalese Royal Kingdom in Sri Lanka, Kandy, has a beautiful landscape with picturesque peaks found in the aisle’s centre and is about 1,600 feet above sea level. The city is widely renowned for the Royal Botanic Gardens, which has more than 4,000 designated types of flora, and the Holy Tooth Relic Temple, the most respected Buddhist temple. Moreover, Kandy was a carefully designed metropolis during Ceylon’s British colonial era (Sri lanka). Considering these arguments, UNESCO designated Kandy as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With a total area of 1,940 SQ KM, Kandy is the second-largest city in Sri Lanka and a significant tourist destination. Moreover, Kandy is essential to the unique Sinhala and Tamil cultures.

These are  Kandy’s most well-known landmarks  amidst abundant nearby attractions and intriguing locations to explore. Every tourist may find something to enjoy, from galleries to vantage places.

Sigiriya  is a rock stronghold and castle that can be located in Sri Lanka’s Matale region. It is also known as the Lion’s Rock. Gardens, ponds, and other buildings surround this ruin. King Kassapa erected Sigiriya, which is listed as a World Heritage Site. Asia’s best-preserved city centre is Sigiriya.

Moreover,  Pidurangala Rock , which is close to Sigiriya, has similarly impressive views of the surroundings, as well as having a well-known cave system of its own and several unfathomable viewpoints that face the fabled Sigiriya rock.

There are several attractions in Ella, Sri Lanka, including hills, cascades, tea farms, and clean, crisp air. Ella is a little village in the highlands. Several visitors choose Ella as one of their favourite hotels and vouch for its spectacular views. This is the ideal place for various treks, including some of the country’s most breathtaking ones, including the Little Adams peaks. In essence, travellers are familiar with this remote community. On your wish list of things to see on your trip to Sri Lanka, we’ve included the  top attractions in Ella and the surrounding areas .

One of the most excellent beaches in Sri Lanka is Mirissa, one of the most well-known seaside locations in the country’s southern region. Exceptional tides for surfing, abundant marine life, including turtles and enormous blue whales, fresh coconuts, delicious seafood from seaside cafés, and tubing and jet skiing at Hidden Beach. Of course, if you’re fortunate enough, you’ll get the opportunity to snorkel with turtles in that wonderful sun-drenched beach town, and we were compiling a list of  Mirissa’s attractions and things to do .

Anuradhapura 

Anuradhapura, sometimes called the Sacred City of Anuradhapura, is a city in Sri Lanka’s North Central Province. Anuradhapura is well known for its archaeological sites, culture, cuisine, and tourist attractions in an iconic historical environment.

The 4th century B.C. saw the founding of the holy city of Anuradhapura. As the Holy City of Anuradhapura, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1982—the long-standing epicentre of Theravada Buddhism. 

Almost three thousand years before Sri Lankan technologists and artisans created the unique, breathtaking structures in the ancient civilisation, Buddhism was carried down from India. These creations, built with bricks and sculpted with stones, may still surprise people worldwide. They were found in the  ancient city of Anuradhapura . 

Polonnaruwa 

While on vacation in Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle, take in the array of sights in Polonnaruwa. You range from seeing fascinating national wildlife safari parks like Minneriya, Angammedilla, and Wasgamuwa to viewing the historic relics of the old kingdom, like the Palace of King Parakramabahu. When you make your way to Polonnaruwa, there are many sights to see.

It would help if you caught Polonnaruwa whiffs, located a little over 3 hours northeast of Kandy, with enormous historical, cultural, and architectural worth.

Sri Lankan engineers and artisans created unique, breathtaking structures in ancient culture. These creations, seen in the historic city of Polonnaruwa, were built using bricks and sculpted with stones. See our list of the Top Tourist Attractions in Polonnaruwa .

The little hamlet of Habarana, situated in the middle of Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle, makes a fantastic starting place for exploring the country’s ancient towns. The city also acts as a centre for ecotourism and adventure sports and is encircled by lush forests.

A wildlife safari is a very well-liked sport in Habarana. Several national parks are adjacent to the town, including Kaudulla, Hurulu Eco Park, and Minneriya, which are well-known for their enormous elephant populations. For example, hundreds of elephants assemble in the park’s reservoir at the yearly elephant gathering at Minneriya during the dry season. Explore this link for  Habarana Travel Guide .

The Jaffna area is one of the most gorgeous places on the northernmost tip of Sri Lanka. Jaffna is known for having a large population of Tamil people, and any tourist will be impressed by the locals’ friendliness. Thus, Jaffna should be your next travel fantasy if you are looking for a place that offers tourists majesty and outstanding hospitality.

The town’s transportation system is excellent, making it simple for guests to travel within the area for sightseeing or shopping. Explore our list of  Jaffna’s best tourist attractions .

Nuwara Eliya  

One of Sri Lanka’s most dynamic areas is Nuwara Eliya town and the surrounding area, where you may spend much time in tranquilly and rich vegetation. Families and couples looking to enjoy a fantastic experience can head to The Area. Including Nuwara Eliya on your bucket list and learning about its top attractions can help you have a stress-free trip there the next time you visit. Moreover, Nuwara Eliya is a beautiful rural location for people who love nature combined with style. See our  list of Nuwara Eliya’s best tourist Attractions .

Trincomalee

A port city on Sri Lanka’s eastern coast is called Trincomalee. Contrary to the Indian Ocean, the beaches in the Bay of Trincomalee are the preferred locations for fishing, whale watching, scuba diving, and surfing. The town is also home to Sri Lanka’s largest Dutch fort. Also, most Tamils and Sinhalese believe this region is sacred to the Trincomalee, and its neighbourhoods contain historically significant Hindu and Buddhist shrines. There are plenty of sites to see in Trincomalee .

In Sri Lanka’s western Puttalam District, there is a seaside town called Kalpitiya. There are fourteen islands on the Kalpitiya peninsula. The most popular kitesurfing location in Sri Lanka is Kalpitiya, which welcomes enthusiasts of all skill levels for a fantastic lagoon tour to test the winds. In addition to being a kitesurfing haven, Kalpitiya is a well-liked location for dolphin-watching, diving, and snorkelling excursions. Due to the rich marine life surrounding Kalpitiya, the 14 islands comprising this group are home to several tiny fishing settlements. Enjoy this peaceful town’s sights and noises when visiting Sri Lanka. While visiting Kalpitiya Beach, the dry season lasts from October to May. Explore The top 14 attractions and things to do in Kalpitiya .

Mannar Because of its captivating geography and historical significance, Mannar has many places to see. From being the setting for renowned ancient tales to retaining some unexpected natural attractions, Mannar will surprise you, making it a location to be noticed when travelling through the north and west of Sri Lanka. So prepare to be engaged by this list of attractions and Experience checklist as you want to discover more about the stunning surroundings of Mannar .

Things to Do in Sri Lanka 

Surfing in Sri Lanka 

A severe query that is being pondered by many! Which season of the year is best for surfing in Sri Lanka?

As it’s always excellent, there isn’t the best surf season in Sri Lanka. However, you’ll be able to find swell somewhere for most of the year.

Typically, the south beaches are busiest from November through April (traveller and surfing season). The significant exception, in this case, is that you will always acquire waves.

The season for surfing at Arugam Bay is open! Sri Lanka’s long waves flow from May to September, build until the beginning of October, and roll back out. When the town closes, the rains intensify, and continuing east on a surf trip in Sri Lanka becomes meaningless. See our list of  Surfing beaches in Sri Lanka .

Scuba diving in Sri Lanka 

Sri Lanka is an excellent place for divers. With 1,600 kilometres of coastline, breathtaking diving opportunities are abundant. Even the most experienced divers will be amazed by the variety of Sri Lankan diving sites, which range from breathtaking wreck dives to stunning coral reefs teeming with life. In addition, the diverse marine life in Sri Lanka’s warm oceans will surprise you, whether you’re seeking encounters with enormous fish, such as the blue whale in Sri Lanka, or macro-organisms. Thanks to its top-notch diving locations, friendly people, and breathtaking topside scenery, Sri Lanka is a must-visit destination for divers. Please keep reading for more information about our recommended  diving spots in Sri Lanka .

Best Beaches in Sri Lanka 

The beach is a well-known Sri Lankan activity. The “no concerns” attitude that characterises so much of Sri Lanka is perfectly captured by coastal culture, whether it is a game of cricket, a snooze in the sun, or an early morning surf. So, it is simple to choose a calm section of the most incredible beaches in Sri Lanka that is all to oneself.

From March to September, the South and West coastlines of Sri Lanka frequently encounter rain and thunderstorms, while from October to February, the North and East coasts of Sri Lanka are typically the wettest.

The beaches on the list are divided into the East, South, North, and West coast zones, so you may visit Sri Lanka any time of year and have a fantastic beach holiday. Explore our list of the  best beaches in Sri Lanka .

Safari in Sri Lanka 

Without going on one of Sri Lanka’s magnificent Safaris, your schedule for a trip to this Asian splendour would be lacking. Although we often associate safaris with Africa, consider the benefits of a safari in Sri Lanka.

There are numerous possibilities when choosing which Sri Lanka safari to take. However, it is unquestionably one of the unique activities and locations to visit in Sri Lanka. Your life would be made more accessible with a handbook that has all the information you want about Sri Lanka and lists the best safaris there. So continue reading through this link and make  the best Sri Lanka safari trip  arrangements keeping that in mind.

Hiking and trekking in Sri Lanka

Trekkers and hikers will find Sri Lanka a tropical paradise with various beautiful landscapes and spectacular sights. This island nation has many routes to discover, from dense woods and gentle slopes to imposing peaks and rough terrain. Here are  Sri Lanka’s top 15 hikes and treks  to help you organise your upcoming excursion.

Bird watching in Sri Lanka 

Sri Lanka is a bird lover’s paradise. There are 439 birds known to live in Sri Lanka, an island with a rich biodiversity, including 236 permanent birds and 203 migrant birds. The remaining birds are vagrants and infrequent visits; Sri Lanka is home to 68 species of birds with indigenous resident forms and 33 endemic birds. One of the top birding destinations on earth, Sri Lanka boasts numerous excellent locations for bird viewing. In addition, during the winter, almost 200 seasonal migratory terrestrial and aquatic birds go from Europe to Sri Lanka. Learn more about The  top spots in Sri Lanka for birdwatching .

Night Life in Sri Lanka 

Your trip is incomplete if you have yet to experience the nightlife in Sri Lanka’s urban centres. There are plenty of pubs, nightclubs, live music venues, amusement parks, restaurants, and other locations to experience Sri Lanka’s vibrant nightlife, so finding one is easy. A journey to Sri Lanka enables you to explore new facets of your life and appreciate every moment. This nation offers you the chance to go on daring excursions and has unique nightlife experiences, from animal sanctuaries to live music venues. We’ve compiled a  list of the best five cities in Sri Lanka  to experience its legendary nightlife, keeping the nightlife activities in mind.

Experience Sri Lankan Street foods  

Although Sri Lankan cuisine is full of inventive delicacies, nothing beats the best street food. Visitors discover the finest mixed foods to consume while travelling to a new country—also, tourists like to sample the local cuisine wherever they go on vacation. Read our excellent introduction to understand  Sri Lankan street foods , which include extensive Vegan and vegetarian alternatives. Sri Lanka is one of the well-known places for street food.

Explore Events in Sri Lanka 

Sri Lanka is a nation rich in culture and history, as seen by the numerous events and festivals. Every taste in Sri Lanka has celebrations, from ancient religious festivals to contemporary literary and cinema festivals. To appreciate Sri Lanka’s unique culture, attend some of these events if you’re considering travelling there. Something always happens in Sri Lanka, from religious festivities to cultural events. Explore  the Sri Lanka event list.

Train experience in Sri Lanka Travelling by train in Sri Lanka is a unique and unforgettable experience that lets you see the nation’s varied landscape and enjoy its rich cultural history. The trip from Colombo to Kandy by rail, which passes through lush tea plantations, foggy mountains, and lovely hillside towns, is one of the most well-travelled itineraries in Sri Lanka. The train ride from Ella to Kandy , regarded as one of the most beautiful in the world, is another well-travelled route. This seven-hour ride offers breathtaking views of waterfalls, tea plantations, and mountains through deep woods, undulating hills, and small towns. In addition, the train journeys to Anuradhapura , Jaffna, Trincomalee and Seethawaka are also always to be noticed.

The train ride from Colombo to Galle is a must-try if you’re interested in experiencing Sri Lanka’s coastal districts . You travel down the scenic coastline for three hours, passing by quaint fishing towns, white sand beaches, and ancient fortifications.

Also, Suggest reading –   Top-Rated Outdoor Adventures in Sri Lanka.

Visa and Other information 

You should apply for a travel visa to visit Sri Lanka. Depending on whether you are travelling for business, pleasure, or transit, Sri Lanka provides a variety of visas. Travellers who want to visit Sri Lanka for touristic activities such as sightseeing, visiting friends and family, or engaging in leisure must get a tourist visa. After arrival in Sri Lanka, the tourist visa’s initial 30-day validity period may be extended for six months.

The application procedure for a Sri Lankan tourist visa is simple and may be finished online. The steps are as follows:

  • To submit your application, visit the Sri Lanka Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) website at  https://www.eta.gov.lk/slvisa/ .
  • Fill out the online application form with all the relevant elements, such as your contact information, travel schedule, and personal information.
  • Submit a scanned copy of your passport’s bio-data page and a passport-sized photo of yourself.
  • Visa charges can be paid online using a credit or debit card.
  • After 24 hours of submitting your application, you will receive an email confirming your visa.

Visa requirements for tourists

You must fulfil the following criteria to be qualified for a Sri Lanka tourist visa:

  • Your passport must be valid for at least another six months after the anticipated end of your trip to Sri Lanka.
  • A return ticket or plan for further Travel is required.
  • To cover your stay in Sri Lanka, you must have enough money.
  • You must not be a convict or convey security trouble to the country.
  • You must be in excellent health and free of any infectious disorders.

Online Arrival and Departure cards

Since January 1st, 2023, facilities have been made available for international visitors to Sri Lanka and Sri Lankan citizens departing the country to fill out their arrival and departure cards online.

The Department of Immigration and Emigration’s official website,  www.immigration.gov.lk , and its webpage at  https://eservices.immigration.gov.lk/emb/eEmbarkation/’ #/home-page , are where air travellers may fill out this form three days before departure.

The Sri Lankan rupee is used as the currency (LKR). In addition to English, Tamil and Sinhalese are printed on notes worth 10, 20, 50, 100, 500,1000 and 5000 rupees. The currency rates at banks and the majority of hotels are comparable. Many places allow take that takes bank cards. From 9:00 to 13:00 on Monday through Friday, banks are open.

Power Sources and Plugs

In Sri Lanka, the standard voltage is 220 volts. Although some hotels have conventional European plugs (2 cylindrical plugs), we urge you to bring an adaptor. Please be aware that power outages are common in Sri Lanka.

Travelling around Sri Lanka

By Tour Operators 

Travel agents with local connections, knowledge, and experience may enhance your vacation’s enjoyable and stress-free aspects. They can plan your holiday, find you the finest offers and give you the hotels, transportation, and other help required to make it unique. So visit  Sri Lanka Tourism  and find your next holiday dream maker with the accredited tour operator in Sri Lanka. 

By Car and driver

Hiring a car and driver to transport you is a standard way to see Sri Lanka. Your decision as to whether to use the service as a taxi to get you to your destination or to make use of your driver as more of a personal tour guide and chauffeur is entirely up to you. Costs start at around Rs. 4000 daily, including gratuities, and vary accordingly. Search for reliable businesses that use chauffeur guides who have received accreditation from the  Sri Lanka Tourism Board .

By Tuk-tuks 

Rickshaws – known as three-wheelers, tri-shaws or tuk-tuks – are everywhere in Sri Lanka, and you won’t have to try hard to hail one down. They operate like taxis and will take you from A to B, although they’re probably more of a novelty than a comfortable way to get around. You can haggle a driver down to whatever you think is a suitable price, but you should pay around 50-75Rs per km as a rough guide – and agree on the cost beforehand. 

In Sri Lanka, buses are inexpensive and widely available. You may go halfway across the island for as little as Rs 1000. However, air-conditioned buses would cost around twice as much. Local buses are the blue ones, whereas long-distance buses are the red ones.

The British constructed the railway system in the 19th century, and a lot has stayed the same. Many tourists who come to Sri Lanka use the trains only to enjoy the breathtaking countryside views, and since tickets are so inexpensive, it would be easy for you to do the same. Visit  railway.gov.lk .

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Sri Lanka – Travel

Explore Sri Lanka

Everything you need to know about sri lanka for the best experience, find the best attractions, hotels, restaurants and more, or browse featured categories:, restaurants, accommodations.

Sri Lanka

Your Next Adventure Awaits

Explore the land of endless beauty, rich culture, and warm hospitality: Sri Lanka is a stunning island waiting to be discovered. It features beautiful golden beaches, rolling hills, stunning wildlife, and ancient temples.

Attractions

Sri Lanka is a land for endless excitement, with a wide range of activities and attractions that can suit all interests. Whether you are looking to relax on a beach, explore rich culture, or embark on a adventure, Sri Lanka has something for everyone .

Ella Odyssey Train

Ella Odyssey Train

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Ravana Falls

Aberdeen Waterfall

Aberdeen Falls

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Arugam Bay: Sri Lanka’s Surfer’s Paradise

Sigiriya Lion Rock

Sigiriya Lion Rock

Yala National Park

Yala National Park

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Dambulla Cave Temple

Adams Peak

Adam’s Peak

Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe National Park

Temple of the Tooth

Temple of the Tooth

Sri Lanka has a wide range of choices for accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets. From luxurious resorts and hotels, to budget friendly guesthouses and homestays. Traveller can find a variety of options to make their stay in Sri Lanka comfortable and memorable.

Cinnamon Grand Colombo

Cinnamon Grand Colombo

Kings Bury Hotel

Kingsbury Hotel

Sri Lanka is a food lover’s paradise, it offers a rich and diverse experience. All from street food to fine dinining, Sri Lanka definitely has something to satisfy your taste buds. With a blend of Indian, Chinese and local food, you are guranteed to find something that is unique and delicious.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

Blue Orbit by Citrus

The Gallery Café

The Gallery Café

Ministry of Crab

Ministry of Crab

Endless opportunities.

Sri Lanka has a vast variety of activities and things you can experience, the Island is popular and known for these amazing traits.

Surfing Sri lanka

Sri Lanka is a small island located in South Asia, surrounded by the beautiful Indian Ocean. Despite the size, Sri Lanka is rich in history, culture and natural beauty. From beautiful cities to peaceful countryside. Sri Lanka offers a wide range of experiences for travellers. With rich history of kingdoms and empires, Sri Lanka is the home to various ancient ruins, monuments and temples that showcase the island’s culture. With its pristine beaches, beautiful rainforests, and diverse wildlife, Sri Lanka is a nature lover’s dream.

Sri Lanka Blog One inspiring story is worth traveling. Discover more about local food, tradition and history. Read the stories that make you want to travel.

sri lanka tourist attractions list

  • August 1, 2023 August 1, 2023

The 10 Essential Things to Know for a Wonderful Trip to Sri Lanka

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Visiting Sri Lanka: Unveiling Enchanting Beaches, Temples & More!

Visiting Sri Lanka Sri Lanka, also known as the pearl of the Indian Ocean, is a small island nation located in...

Begin your journey today!

Apply for eta.

To enter Sri Lanka, you must first apply for a Sri Lankan ETA. For your convenience, we've listed the correct website.

Fill out arrival card

When you arrive in Sri Lanka you have to fill out an arrival card, this can be done upon arrival at the airport or you can do it online beforehand.

Find Attractions

Plan your trip today by finding the best attractions, hotels, restaurants and more.

Most frequently asked questions and answers

Yes , traveling to Sri Lanka is safe despite some negative news that may circulate. The country is recovering from an economic crisis, but the situation has improved and will not significantly impact your overall travel experience.

If you’re planning a vacation to Sri Lanka, there are many wonderful attractions and experiences to consider. Some of the top must-visit destinations include the ancient city of Anuradhapura, the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, the Temple of the Tooth in Kandy, and the beautiful beaches of Unawatuna and Mirissa. You can also take a guided tour to explore the country’s rich cultural heritage and get a taste of its traditional cuisine. To get the most out of your trip, it may be helpful to consult with a travel specialist or do some research to create an itinerary that suits your interests and preferences.

The best time to visit Sri Lanka is from December to March, when the weather is dry and warm. This is also the peak tourist season, so visitors should expect larger crowds and higher prices.

There are several ways to get around Sri Lanka, including buses, trains, taxis, and tuk-tuks. However, it is recommended to avoid public buses, as the ride can be quite rough. Visitors can also rent a car or take a guided tour. The most popular way to get around is by private car, which is convenient and allows for flexibility in itinerary.

The currency used in Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR). Visitors can exchange currency at banks, hotels, and currency exchange bureaus. Credit cards and ATMs are widely accepted in tourist areas.

It is recommended to drink bottled water in Sri Lanka, as the tap water may contain impurities. Visitors should also be careful when eating raw fruits and vegetables, as they may have been washed in tap water.

Visitors should pack lightweight and comfortable clothing, as well as a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. It is also a good idea to bring a waterproof jacket or umbrella, as there are occasional rain showers throughout the year. Comfortable walking shoes are also recommended, as there are many places to explore on foot.

The local cuisine in Sri Lanka is a blend of Indian, South Asian, and Dutch influences. Popular dishes include rice and curry, string hoppers, and kottu roti. Visitors should also try traditional sweets such as wattalappam and jaggery.

Visitors should dress modestly when visiting temples and other religious sites in Sri Lanka. This typically means covering the arms and legs, and removing shoes before entering. It is also important to respect local customs and traditions, and to dress appropriately for the weather and activity.

Visitors should consult their healthcare provider or a travel medicine clinic to determine if any vaccinations are required for travel to Sri Lanka.

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sri lanka tourist attractions list

A Global Affair | Travel Sri Lanka: A Guide To Visas, Logistics And Must-Visits

Want to enjoy stunning white sand beaches, soothing natural beauty, and wildlife adventures pack your bags for this south asian island country, sri lanka, which lies in the indian ocean..

Sri Lanka Travel Visa Rules For Indian Passport Holders Travel Tips Currency Logistics Weather Places To Visit A Global Affair | Travel Sri Lanka: A Guide To Visas, Logistics And Must-Visits

Are you planning a trip to an island in the Indian Ocean where you can delight in pristine sandy beaches adorned with coconut trees, all set against the backdrop of turquoise seas? Look no further — as Sri Lanka beckons travellers with its captivating blend of natural beauty and vibrant culture, boasting a rich history dating back over 2,500 years.

Formerly known as Ceylon, the nation offers sun, sea, and ultimate seclusion, away from the demands of daily life. Here, you can witness picturesque natural wonders, indulge in thrilling wildlife sanctuary experiences, delve into the religious teachings of Buddha, and embrace tranquillity, all in one place.

Sri Lanka, separated from the Indian peninsula by the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, recently surpassed the Maldives regarding footfall from India. This indicates that Indian tourists are heading to the Island Nation more after the diplomatic row with the Maldives. A Male-based news outlet, Adhadhu, reports that in January 2024, tourist arrivals in the Maldives lagged behind Sri Lanka after 4 years.

So if you are heading to the island nation, let's unravel the essentials for Indian citizens.

Entry Requirements & Visa Procedures :

Sri Lanka is a small country surrounded by the Indian Ocean and has so much to see and do. A Sri Lankan Tourist visa is all you need to enter the country and experience it all. The pilot project, announced last year, offered free visas for the first 30 days of stay until March 31, 2024. However, after March 31st, 2024, the old visa process automatically resumed, where the standard cost for a tourist visa is around Rs. 1700 to grant a 30-day stay in the country with a maximum 2 entries.

Sri Lanka Offers multiple visa categories as mentioned below:

  • Tourist Visa
  • Business Visa
  • Transit Visa
  • Student Visa
  • Residency Visa

The visa process and charges may vary based on the purpose of the visit and visa type. However, transit passengers do not need to pay any fees for their transit visa.

Tourist Visa Application Process:

You should have an ETA (Electronic Travel Authorisation) to travel to and stay within the country. ETA can be obtained online via the official website (srilanka.visaonlinegov.org or www.eta.gov.lk.) or at Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) upon arrival.

Online Application Procedure:

  • Submit the application online
  • Receive ETA approval via email
  • Take a printout of the approval and present it to immigration officers at the airport
  • Validity upto 30 days from the date of issue
  • Stay Duration: Up to 3 months (extendable up to six months)

Required Documents:

  • ETA application form
  • Two recent passport-size photographs
  • Passports (Must be valid for a minimum of 6 months from the arrival date).
  • Confirmed return tickets 
  • Proof of accommodation/ /invitation from Sri Lanka
  • Photocopy of the passport's front and last pages
  • Bank statement

Points to be noted:

  • All passengers must fill out Arrival/Departure cards online at www.immigration.gov.lk within 3 days of departure.
  • Visitors not holding return/onward tickets could be refused entry.
  • Processing Time for your online visa is up to four working days
  • The ETA approval certificate must be used within 180 days after issued.

Sri Lanka offers visa exemption for Indian tourists during a specified period, with the possibility of extension.

Travel Logistics:

While Sri Lanka is a year-round destination, the best time to visit the place is from November to April in the southwest and February to September in the northeast part of the country. A short 5-day trip or a leisurely 15-day exploration both can be enjoyable options for visitors.

Colombo, the capital, provides direct flights to major Indian cities like New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, and Hyderabad. A round trip from India to Sri Lanka costs approximately between Rs 16,000 to Rs 90,000 per person, depending on the departure city and class of travel. Flight durations vary, with around 3 hours and 35 minutes from Delhi to Colombo, and approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes from Bengaluru or Chennai.

Alternatively, travellers can opt for cruise services, with prices ranging from Rs 55,000 to Rs 4,50,000 per person.

Within Sri Lanka, transportation options include taxis, scooters, and bicycles for budget-conscious travellers. Luxury train services by Expo Rail cover major routes, while air taxis operated by Sri Lankan Airlines offer quick connections between popular destinations. The Sri Lanka Transport Board facilitates online bus booking services for both locals and tourists.

Accommodation options range from budget-friendly hostels to luxury resorts. In cities like Colombo and Kandy, a night's stay at a 5-star property can cost Rs 15,000 to Rs 40,000, while budget accommodations may range from Rs 1,500 to Rs 5,000 per night. For a 5-day budget trip, costs may total around Rs 50,000 to Rs 90,000 per person. Also, remember to exchange your currency at the airport or in big cities; the exchange rate is 1 Sri Lanka Rupee = INR 0.28.

ALSO READ: Exploring Kazakhstan - Tourist Visa To Travel Logistics: All You Need To Know

Sri Lanka has a tropical climate, which means it experiences distinct wet and dry seasons. However, it stays hot and humid all year round. Even during the rainy season, there's usually plenty of sunshine, especially along the coast. The average temperature in Sri Lanka is 25°C throughout the year. Most tourists prefer to visit during winter because the weather remains dry and cool at that time.

Sri Lanka is a multilingual country with several languages spoken across its diverse communities. The official languages of Sri Lanka are Sinhalese and Tamil. However, English is widely spoken in tourist places or big cities.

Experience Rich Cultural Heritage And W ildlife:

Visitors can immerse themselves in the country's heritage by visiting 4 UNESCO World Heritage sites such as the Sigiriya rock fortress, the Dambulla Cave Temple, and the sacred cities of Kandy and Anuradhapura. 

Sri Lanka's wildlife sanctuaries, like Udawalawe National Park, and Wilpattu National Park offer opportunities to observe elephants and other native species in their natural habitats. You can hike through lush green hills in Ella or enjoy water activities in coastal towns like Bentota. Cities like Colombo, Kandy, Galle, and Trincomalee also have plenty of attractions for tourists.

The ancient ruins of Anuradhapura and Sigiriya are for history enthusiasts, while the tea plantations in Nuwara Eliya offer a serene retreat amidst stunning landscapes.

To enjoy breathtaking white sand beaches lined by thick palm tree forests, with clear waters and perfect waves for surfing, visit Mirissa, Unawatuna, Tangalle, Dikwella, and Nilwella. You can also spot scenic waterfalls throughout your jounney like Elle Wala waterfall, near Wellawaya and many more. After all the adventures, if you seek spirituality, you can easily find Buddhist temples there. The Sri Dalada Maligawa, also known as the Temple of the Tooth Relic in Kandy is a must-visit. ALSO READ: Travel Mexico: Types Of Visas, Document Checklist & Whole Procedure. Deets Inside

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COMMENTS

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    Here are some of the must-see tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. 18 Best Sri Lanka Tourist Places While planning your next vacation to this serene country, do check out these amazing Sri Lanka tourist places. Here is a complete list of the best places to visit in Sri Lanka where one can enjoy a great time away from the hustle-bustle.

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    16. National Museum of Kandy. Map of Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka. 1. Yala National Park. Sri Lankan leopard in Yala National Park. This is where you can do a safari experience Sri Lankan style. The huge national park borders the Indian Ocean and has a wide range of different ecosystems.

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    2023. 7. Galle Fort. 3,526. Historic Sites. Galle is located in the south of Sri Lanka. A journey to the past sees the remnants of a Dutch past at a World Heritage Site. Galle has been the emporium of foreign trade since the dawn of commerce. The Dutch Fort, which has been declared a World Heritage Site, surrounds the older part of the town and ...

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    Adam's Peak is a mountain in Sri Lanka and is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. It is a conical mountain, standing at 2,243 metres (7,359 feet) tall, and famous for Sri Prada. This roughly translates to 'sacred footprint', and is located near the summit.

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    While Ella deserves the hype, there are other quaint mountain towns that are also worth visiting: Ohiya, Idalgashinna, Haputale, and Wellawaya. 2. Taste the world's best cinnamon on Ganduwa Island. Southern Sri Lanka produces some of the world's best cinnamon, a lighter, more sweeter variety than is found in Indonesia and Vietnam.

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    8. Minneriya National Park. Best for witnessing the largest gathering of Asian elephants in the world. Herds of wild elephants - around 300 in number - graze nearly 9000 hectares (22,240 acres) of Minneriya National Park, where life centers around Minneriya Lake.

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    Knuckles Mountain Range (also known as the Dumbara Mountain Range) is one of the best places in Sri Lanka for hiking and is approximately 3 hours drive South of Kandy City. With multiple trails of varying lengths it is a great way to get back to nature, although be warned: you will be required to wear leech socks, and your guide will carry a ...

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    Welcome to Sri Lanka. See what's waiting for you on your next island getaway. Savour the unique experiences this island treasure has to offer. What the world has to say. The best destinations to travel to in 2023 mentions Sri Lanka as one of the tourist hotspots this year. Golden Paradise Visa - Department of Immigration and Emigration, Sri Lanka.

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    Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka Sri Lanka is also a land of staggering contrast and spectacular beauty due to its compactness.Along the coast, visitors can explore amazing beaches, safari tours, guided walks through ancient cities, experience the culture and bit of modern Sri Lanka.We welcome you to find your unique Sri Lankan travel experience.

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    Exploring the top Sri Lanka tourist attractions is a must, and no trip is truly complete without a visit to Sigiriya. This iconic site boasts a massive rock fortress housing ancient palace ruins, serene water gardens, and mesmerising frescoes, all located in close proximity to the majestic Pidurangala Rock.. For those who enjoy early mornings, don't forget to lace up your hiking boots and ...

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    There are so many reasons to visit Sri Lanka. Endless white-sand beaches with pumping surf. Lush tropical jungle and misty mountain towns.. Ancient World Heritage sites and safari plains where Asian Elephants and Leopards roam in abundance. Enchanting train rides through rolling tea plantations and vibrant cultural heritage.The friendliest locals you could ever hope to meet plus delicious food ...

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    Whether you are interested in its religious significance, its challenging climb, or its stunning views, Adam's Peak, one of the most popular Sri Lanka tourist places, is a must-visit destination for any visitor to Sri Lanka. 2. Ella - A Picturesque Hill Town in Sri Lanka. Image Source.

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    Sri Lanka Tourist Places. Sygiria, Nuwara Eliya, Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage, Polonnaruwa Sacred City, Mirrisa, Yala National Park, Jaffana, Ulpotha, Trincomalee, Udawalawe National Park, Sinharaja Forest Reserve, Horton Plains National Park, St. Clairs Falls, Tawalantenne, Arugam Bay and many more. Because of the artistic diversity of places ...

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    Sri Lanka is truly a treasure for any traveler, with its rich variety of experiences ranging from historical sites and cultural discoveries to breathtaking natural landscapes and adventure activities. The 17 cities and towns featured offer a comprehensive overview of what this fascinating country has to offer.

  18. 15 Must See Attractions in Sri Lanka

    1. Sigiriya Rock. Sigiriya Rock is one of Sri Lanka's most popular tourist destinations and a must-see. It was formerly the royal palace of King Kassapa, one of Sri Lanka's ancient rulers, and is now one of eight UNESCO World Heritage sites in the country. Sigiriya Rock, which rises above the lush green trees below and is known as Lion Rock ...

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    Welcome to the ultimate Sri Lanka travel guide. Nestled in the Indian Ocean, this beautiful island nation is a vibrant tapestry of history, culture, and natural wonders. From ancient temples and UNESCO World Heritage sites to pristine beaches and lush tea plantations, Sri Lanka offers a diverse range of experiences for every traveler.

  20. SLTDA

    Major attractions of the city include the largest and best preserved cave temple complex of Sri Lanka, and the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium, famous for being built in just 167 days. The city also boasts to have the largest rose quartz mountain range in South Asia, and the Iron wood forest, or Namal Uyana.

  21. Sri Lanka Travel Guide

    Sri Lanka travel is renowned for its beautiful beaches, verdant landscapes, historic ruins, Many more things to do and lively culture. Although Sri Lanka is a year-round destination, the ideal months are between December and March because of the dry, bright weather. Millions of tourists visit Sri Lanka yearly due to its numerous tourist ...

  22. Explore Sri Lanka: Attractions, Hotels, Dining & More!

    Sri Lanka offers a wide range of experiences for travellers. With rich history of kingdoms and empires, Sri Lanka is the home to various ancient ruins, monuments and temples that showcase the island's culture. With its pristine beaches, beautiful rainforests, and diverse wildlife, Sri Lanka is a nature lover's dream.

  23. Sri Lanka Tourism

    Explore the wonders of Sri Lanka, a land of rich culture, natural beauty and diverse attractions. Whether you are looking for a relaxing beach holiday, a scenic hill country retreat, a heritage tour or an adventure-filled journey, Sri Lanka has something for everyone. Visit the official website of Sri Lanka Tourism and plan your dream trip today.

  24. A Global Affair

    The average temperature in Sri Lanka is 25°C throughout the year. Most tourists prefer to visit during winter because the weather remains dry and cool at that time. Language: Sri Lanka is a multilingual country with several languages spoken across its diverse communities. The official languages of Sri Lanka are Sinhalese and Tamil.

  25. Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka

    Tourist Attractions in Sri Lanka Sri Lanka is also a land of staggering contrast and spectacular beauty due to its compactness.Along the coast, visitors can explore amazing beaches, safari tours, guided walks through ancient cities, experience the culture and bit of modern Sri Lanka.We welcome you to find your unique Sri Lankan travel experience.

  26. Sri Lanka Tops List of Best Places for Solo Female Travel in 2024

    Mon Apr 08 2024. In a recent ranking by Timeout.com, Sri Lanka has claimed the top spot as the best destination for solo female travellers in 2024. This recognition highlights the country's appeal and safety for women exploring the world on their own. Solo female travel is gaining popularity, with a significant number of Gen Z women expressing ...