Getting around Sri Lanka

Due to the long distances between each of our trips and the heavy traffic on the roads, driving in Sri Lanka can be an adventure in itself. But because we want you to get the most out of your time in the country, we’ve chosen a private car with English-speaking driver and air conditioning as the primary form of transport during your trip. This way, you can see the best of the country at your own pace and stop off whenever and wherever you like en route.

woman next to car

Private car with local driver

We think this is the best way to travel around Sri Lanka; you can fully enjoy the journey and make stops to take photos. You’ll have your own private driver and air-conditioned car. Travel in comfort as you pass by vast tea plantations, temples and unspoilt villages. Your driver also speaks English, so feel free to ask them any questions along the way.

blue train in sri lanka

Train through the countryside

If you decide to travel to Ella, you’ll most likely get there by train. This train journey is known among travellers as one of the most beautiful in Sri Lanka, so it’s well worth giving up your private car and driver for this part of your trip. We’ll buy you a 2nd class ticket so you’re travelling with the local people. You’ll ride past impressive mountains and spectacular gorges until you arrive at the station where your driver will meet you.

sea plane in blue sea

Seaplane to the Maldives

If you’d like to combine your Sri Lanka trip with a visit to the Maldives then the transport between the two countries will most likely involve a seaplane. The flight duration is approximately one and a half hours. After takeoff, you’ll witness the atolls and an azure sea in the distance. As you approach the tiny islands you’ll realise that this really is paradise – green palm trees surrounded by white beaches. Depending on which resort you stay at in the Maldives, you may also travel by speedboat to the island.

Travel with meaning

Aside from the train journey to Ella, it’s not particularly easy to get around Sri Lanka by public transport, so you’ll mainly travel by private car. But you can make up for this by eating in local places as much as possible and exploring each destination by foot or bicycle if you can. You never know what you might find. There are some lovely short treks to enjoy in Horton Plains and around Ella, and travelling by foot is always a great way to meet local people. As your driver might not be with you at all times, why not test out those haggling skills and travel by tuk-tuk?

You might be interested to see…

David on a rickshaw

Speak to our Sri Lanka specialist, David

“There’s nowhere like Sri Lanka. Having travelled all over the country, it wasn’t long before I fell completely in love with its beaches, tea hills, wild rainforest and national parks. Oh, and did I mention the spicy curries? They knocked my socks off!”

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