Sri Lanka Holidays
Places to Visit in Sri Lanka
Fusing ancient spirituality with remarkable nature and some of the finest beaches in South Asia, the teardrop island of Sri Lanka is a country of serene mountain vistas, elephant-filled national parks, and no less than eight World Heritage sites. The Buddhist faith permeates every aspect of the Sri Lankan culture, from historic temples that still play a vital role in the people's lives to Ayurveda massage techniques, inspired by ancient wisdom. Come to explore the jungles and temples, or simply relax on the sands.
Below we've listed some of our favourite places to visit in Sri Lanka. For more ideas or to start planning your Sri Lanka holiday, talk to a Travel Expert today on 0800 707 6010.
Atop a 200 metre-high rock, thought to be a lava plug from an extinct volcano, stands the Sigirya Rock Fortress, a World Heritage site and one of Sri Lanka’s most impressive sights. With near vertical walls, the climb to the top of the outcrop is a tough one, but worth it for the breath-taking forest views, plus the atmospheric palace ruins, rock gardens and ancient frescoes on the top.
Something of a cultural hub, Kandy’s stand-out attraction is the Temple of the Tooth, one of the most sacred Buddhist shrines in the world. But that’s not all: as it stands at an elevation of 500 metres above sea level, Kandy is cooler than the rest of the country, making it a refreshing spot to escape from the heat. And don’t forget your camera: Kandy’s lake and surrounding forest look especially photogenic in the early morning mists.
Yala National Park
Yala National Park
If you’re looking for wildlife adventures, a safari in Yala National Park is where it’s at. For it is here, among the grasses and trees, that you’ll find wild Asian elephants, chattering monkeys, wallowing water buffalo and, if you’re very lucky, the odd leopard skulking through the undergrowth. To top it off, the park is a birdwatching paradise, with around 215 species spotted here, including hornbills, ibis and peacocks.
Primarily a beach destination, tranquil Bentota is home to a cluster of swanky resorts and villas, many of them overlooking the golden sands. Whether you spend your days chilling under a palm tree or trying some of the plentiful water sports on offer is up to you, but be sure to set aside some time for a traditional Ayurveda massage and a trip to see the resident sea turtles at the Sea Turtle Protection Association.