This is a 13 day holiday but could be customised for your requirements. (You can click on location images to see information about them)
Day 1 & 2
Arrive in Sri Lanka, to be met at the airport by our representative/guide. Transfer by air-conditioned vehicle to Negombo, probably slightly bleary eyed and in need for some rest. Stay at The Beach Hotel in Negombo, the plushest hotel with easy reach of the airport and a popular choice with families because of its chic luxury and wide array of activities available for children and adults, from sloshing in the swimming pool to sailing and windsurfing lessons in the well-equipped Mark Warner Watersports Centre. Spend two nights here to recover fully from the long journey. Overnight stay at The Beach Hotel.
Day 3 & 4
Drive south through Colombo for a two-night stay at The Colonial House, a small, recently refurbished inland bungalow on a 50-acre tea and rubber plantation close to Kalutara, the start of Sri Lanka’s west coast beaches. The bungalow, blessed with stirring views over the Kalu Ganga (Black River) from its infinity pool, is conveniently located for a variety of adventure activities, especially cycling and canoeing. We will organise one cycle and canoeing expedition with experienced local guides, allowing you to explore Sri Lanka’s rural life. The excursions will be carefully tailored to your needs and the age of the children. Overnight stay at The Colonial House.
Day 5, 6, 7 & 8
The journey southwards continues to Galle, one of our favourite corners on this magical island. Galle is surrounded by beautiful beaches and small bays, almost untouched by large hotels, but the area offers so much more than a beach holiday: the Galle Fort, a UNESCO-protected World Heritage site and a melting pot of cultural influences. Excursions can be made inland too to see rural temples. There are several excellent restaurants in the local area. Your destination is a lovely private beach villa, ideal for families, called Victoria. Overnight stay at Victoria.
Day 9 & 10
After four days of beach relaxation, travel along the southern coastal road, through the bustling town of Matara, the end of the train line and a key fishing center, and on past Tangalle towards your next destination: Galapitiya, a wonderful eco-retreat close to Yala National Park. We recommend stopping-off en route for lunch and perhaps a swim at one of Tangalle’s fine beaches. The following morning you will be picked up for a Safari Tour in Yala, a vast game reserve that has the highest population of animals of all the national parks. If you are lucky you catch a glimpse of a graceful leopard, now seen with increasing frequency in Yala especially. Overnight stay at Galapitiya Eco Retreat.
Day 11 & 12
After two nights in Galapitiya, head into Sri Lanka’s tea-growing highlands and another highlight of the trip: a two-night stay at Ceylon Tea Trails, a wonderful collection of refurbished tea planter’s bungalows in the south-west corner of the hills, an area renowned for its fine tea and beautiful countryside. The Tea Trails also provides an excellent base for a variety of adventure activities – if you can tear yourself from the old word luxury on the bungalows themselves, that is. There are mountain bike trails that loop through the surrounding tea estates and guides are available on-demand. The reservoirs of Castlereagh and Maskeliya offer a pristine lake environment for kayaking – stable one or two-man kayaks are available for hire (suitable for children over five years old). Maps, guides and safety gear are all provided. A number of treks and scenic walks are also available, including the famous pilgrimage site, Sri Pada, known in English as Adam’s Peak, which is a conical mountain 7,360 feet above sea level. Overnight stay at Castlereagh Bungalow.
You now travel out of the hills and head west towards Colombo, the leafy island capital, a laidback and interesting Asian city. En route stop for a whitewater rafting expedition on the Kelani River, which emanates from the mighty Mahaweli Ganga near Nawalapitiya and offers Grade Three rapids commence at Kitulgala. Travel on for a one-night stay at Galle Face Hotel, a much-loved creation from Sri Lanka’s long Colonial past. Overnight stay at Galle Face Hotel.
*Hotels are subject to availability and can be arranged to suit your requirements.