Flavours of Sri Lanka and Maldives-10 days
Places covered: Colombo, Dambulla, Sigiriya, Kandy, Nuwera Eliya, Ahungalla, Maldives
Day 1 Colombo - Dambulla:
On arrival at Colombo airport you will be welcomed by Concept Voyages’ representative who will assist you to reach Dambulla. Visit the cave temple in Dambulla. Dating back to the First Century BC, the Golden Temple of Dambulla has been the centre of pilgrimage for Buddhists and Hindus alike for 22 centuries. It is Sri Lanka’s most popular historic site. The Cave monastery, home to Buddhist monks is covered with exquisite 2,000 year-old murals depicting the life and times of the Lord Buddha. The shrines also house a collection of 157 statues of Buddha in various sizes and poses, including a 15 metre long reclining Buddha and vividly coloured frescoes on the walls and ceiling, making this the largest antique painted surface in the world. Transfer to Kandalama. Overnight stay at Kandalama.
Day 2 Kandalama – Sigiriya:
Breakfast at hotel. Transfer to Sigiriya. Visit Sigiriya Rock Fortress. Built by an obsessed monarch in the 5th century, Sigiriya or Lion Rock is an astonishing feat of engineering and construction. The most striking portion of Sigiriya, a terracotta and grey core of rock set in the cultural heart of Sri Lanka, rises a sheer 200 metres above a forested plain, its flattened summit sloping gently. A series of moats, ramparts and water gardens — remnants of an ancient city — spread out on two sides of the rock, with the remains of a pair of giant stone lion’s paws still guarding the staircase that leads to the summit, once occupied by a royal palace. Designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1982, Sigiriya is Asia’s best preserved city of the first millennium, showing complex urban planning around the base of the rock, combined with sophisticated engineering and irrigation skills in the palace perched on the summit. It is considered it to be one of the oldest tourist attractions in the world with visitors recording their impressions in some of the earliest-known graffiti. Overnight stay at Kandalama.
Day 3 Sigiriya – Kandy:
Breakfast at hotel. You will be transferred to Kandy enroute visiting Spice Gardens in Matale. Enjoy sightseeing tour of Kandy. Visit Temple of Tooth Relic and watch the spectacular Sri Lankan Cultural Show in the evening. The sacred Temple of the Tooth in the historic city of Kandy houses one of Buddhism’s most sacred relics and draws followers of the Buddhist faith from all over the world. The Royal Complex situated around the Temple of the Tooth and Kandy Lake – comprising of the King’s Palace, the Queens Palace, the Audience Hall, the Royal Boathouse and the Royal Summer House, represent the zenith of ancient Sri Lankan architecture. The Temple of the Sacred Tooth enshrines Sri Lanka’s most important relic of Lord Buddha. Constructed during the 17th and 18th centuries, this temple is surrounded by a deep moat. Nearby are three impressive shrines or devalas dedicated to guardian deities: Natha, Vishnu and Pattini. A fourth devala a short distance away, the Kataragama shrine, is famed for its wooden columns with exquisitely carved panels. Overnight stay at Kandy.
Day 4 Kandy – Nuwara Eliya:
Breakfast at hotel. Transfer to Nuwara Eliya, en route visiting the Tea Plantation. Enjoy a city tour of Nuwara Eliya. Visit Haggala gardens, about 27 hectares (67 acres) just 10 kilometers outside Nuwara Eliya, are quite different. They are best known for their gorgeous display of roses and tree ferns, which grow so well in this chilly zone 1,680 meters up (5,511 feet) and shadowed by the 457-metre tall (1,500-foot) Haggala peak. Bordering on closed nature reserve land, Haggala is also a good place to spot iconic wildlife like the Bear Monkey and the Blue Magpie. Haggala was the site where tea was first cultivated in Sri Lanka. The Garden’s plantation of roses, shrubs, fern, camphor, eucalyptus and montane woodlands make it one of the world’s most beautiful naturally landscaped gardens. The best time to visit would be from mid March to end April when the gardens put up its' best display of vibrant annual flowers, roses and orchids. Overnight stay at Nuwara Eliya.
Day 5 Nuwara Eliya - Ahungalla via Kitugala:
Breakfast at Hotel. Transfer to Ahungalla via Kitulgala. Free day at beach to enjoy the serene atmosphere. Overnight stay at beach resort.
Day 6 Ahungalla - Colombo:
Breakfast at Hotel. You will be transferred to Colombo. Enjoy a half day city tour of Colombo. Visit National Museum of Colombo, also known as the Sri Lanka National Museum is one of two museums in Colombo. It is the largest museum in Sri Lanka. The museum holds contains a collections of much importance to Sri Lanka such as the regalia of the country, including the throne and crown of the Kandyan monarchs as well as many other exhibits telling the story of ancient Sri Lanka. Overnight stay at Colombo.
Day 7 Colombo departure-Maldives arrival:
After breakfast proceed to airport in time to connect the departure flight to Maldives. On arrival at Maldives, you will be welcomed by Concept Voyages’ representative who will transfer you to resort by speed boat. Free day at leisure. Dinner and overnight stay at resort.
Day 8 Maldives:
Breakfast at resort. The Islands of Maldives appear in-between the trading route of the Indian Ocean. Thus settlers, and visitors from neighbouring regions and around the world have come in contact with the islands for as long as history has been recorded. The Maldives is considered by many to be the premier tropical beach destination in the world and the best place to relax and unwind from the hectic and chaotic lifestyle of the modern world. Free day at leisure. Dinner and overnight stay at resort.
Day 9 Maldives:
Breakfast at resort. Enjoy beach activities or soak in the serenity of Maldives. Free day at leisure. Dinner and overnight stay at resort.
Day 10 Maldives departure:
After breakfast, checkout from resort and you will be transferred to Male airport by speed boat for boarding flight to onward destination.
End of tour.