Arrival in Sigiriya
Today you’ll travel north to Sigiriya. After a few hours’ drive, the giant Sigiriya rock will start to loom in front of you. In earlier times, this rock fortress, also known as the ‘Lion Rock’, was covered with hundreds of frescoes and a grand palace stood atop. Once you’ve reached the top, you’ll get the chance to take in the stunning panoramic views of the wild green jungle. For lunch, you’ll stop at a home restaurant in the countryside, and enjoy a traditional farmer’s lunch.
Next, you’ll have the chance to try something completely different as you hop into a jeep for an afternoon of wildlife spotting. Make sure you have your camera at the ready and your eyes peeled because today you’ll get your first glimpse of the wild Sri Lankan elephants that roam here. Depending on where the elephants are today, the park ranger will either take you to Kaudulla or Minneriya National Park which are located right next to each other. As the evening draws in, you’ll arrive at your Polonnaruwa hotel right next to the lake.
This morning, it’s finally time to discover Polonnaruwa and after breakfast, your driver will be waiting for you. Polonnaruwa was once the capital city of Sri Lanka and there are still many interesting relics leftover from this period from palaces and bathhouses to mystical temples. We’ll even arrange a bicycle rental for you. The rest of the afternoon is then free for you enjoy at your own pace. If you feel like some relaxation you can sit by the pool with a book and an ice cold beer. If you fancy something a little more active, you could hire a bike and take a trip around the lake.
Departure & Stop at Dambulla
After breakfast today, you’ll check out of your hotel in Polonnaruwa and head towards your next destination. En route, you’ll stop off at the cave temples of Dambulla, located up in the hills with sweeping countryside views. Here, you’ll find caves crammed full of statues and paintings of the kings of Anuradhapura. You’ll wander through each cave and discover fascinating statues of the grand Buddha.
At the end of the afternoon it’s time to journey onward.
Extension - 4 days / 3 nights
Culture & Elephants in Buddha’s Garden
Very interested in Sri Lankan culture? You can extend this trip and we can add a night in the former capital of Sri Lanka, Anuradhapura. You’ll start by exploring the ancient ruins, the sacred tree and famous stupas which are all found in Anuradhapura. The next day you’ll head to Mihintale, a sacred rock which is now a pilgrimage site. After this, you’ll continue onto Sigiriya and continue the trip above as normal. You can also visit Anuradhapura on our Leopards, Lakes and Royal Palaces trip.
|£365 - per person - Standard accommodation / £368 per person - In Style Accommodation|
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Upgrade to our In Style accommodation
If you fancy a little extra style and comfort during your stay, we can upgrade your Polonnaruwa hotel. You’ll stay in a cosy cottage set amongst tropical jungle plants. You’ll have your own unique open-air garden bathroom with an outdoor shower so you can enjoy the experience of a shower under the stars!
Prices from: £ 258 - per person - In Style accommodation
Combine this trip with...
Where to next? This trip goes together perfectly with these: