Sri Lanka travel route


Sri Lanka travel route

Finding the best Sri Lanka travel route can be a daunting task for most travellers, who wish to have a memorable trip of Sri Lanka, especially for the foreigners. A large number of travellers write us emails and inquire about the best Sri Lanka travel route. Due to the ever-increasing number of questions such as what is the best travel route in Sri Lanka? and what is the best trip to Sri Lanka? we thought of writing this article elaborating several popular travel routes of Sri Lanka, that you least hit once in the lifetime.

We have already written a detailed blog post on Sri Lanka trips in a previous occasion. We carefully scratched the annal of Sri Lanka trips and formulated this blog post with 8 best Sri Lanka travel routes for holiday trips in Sri Lanka. If you are considering to have a Sri Lanka tour, one or several options below can be considered as the route/s for your trip.

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1. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo-Kataragama:

The beauty of this coastal travel route from Colombo to Kataragama cannot be convinced by words. It would definitely fun to cruise along the pristine beaches of west and southern Sri Lanka. There are many places on this route that you can’t simply ignore. So plan your tour with several hours more for the stops. This is a very popular route among the foreign travellers because it brings them to some of the best beach resorts in the island such as Bentota beach, Kalutara, Galle, Hikkaduwa and many other beach resort in Southern Sri Lanka.

Road Trip Condition:: the distance of the route from Colombo to Kataragama is 284 km, it lies very close to the sea, and it has an average altitude between 1-3 meters above sea level, throughout the trip. There are many attractions to stop along the way from Colombo to Kataragama and beaches are the main highlight on this Road trip, all the way from the beginning of the trip to the end. The road is open throughout the year and the road is in very good condition too. The journey takes about 2 days with stops for sightseeing and activities. Best time to visit from November to April.

Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route are:

Kalutara: Gamgatilaka temple, Kalido beach Beruwala: Kachchimale mosque Bentota: Bentota beach, water sport centre Balapitiya: Madu river safari, sea turtle farm Hikkaduwa: Hikkaduwa beach, Hikkaduwa marine sanctuary, Mask museum, Moonstone mines Galle: Galle fortress Unawatuna: Unawatuna beach, stilt fisherman Weligama: Weligama beach, Kustarajagala temple Matara: Polhena beach, whale and dolphin watching, blowhole, the star fort Kataragama: Yala wildlife reserve, Kataragama temple

2. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Matara – Expressway:

This is a very convenient weekend gateway from Colombo, a road trip of Sri Lanka to Matara is an activity that most local residents fond of. Don’t forget to make a whale and dolphin watching in Mirissa and beach hopping in the beaches of Mirissa. The picturesque palm-fringed beaches and shallow torque water of the Indian ocean calming those jittery nerves.

Drop into a beach restaurant and sample a fresh seafood dish, while enjoying the perfect sunset on the horizon. So if you are near Colombo or somewhere in the west coast pack your self and set off on this memorable journey. Road Trip Condition: The total distance of the expressway from Colombo to Matara is 158 km and time taken for the drive 2 hours (time required to reach the expressway entrance is not calculated). Two wheelers are not allowed on the expressway and the maximum speed that can be maintained is 100 km per hours. Best time to visit from November to April. Tea estate nuwara eliya

3. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Nuwara Eliya via Kitulgala:

The graceful blend of beautifully landscaped tea garden of Sri Lanka’s hill country and cascading waterfalls of perennial waterways in Nuwara Eliya are sights to behold. The newcomers in the city are taken by surprise by its sheer beauty. When the trip is extended from Nuwara Eliya to Kandy, the travellers are completely mystified by the breathtaking scenery along the way. The winding roads, high elevation and healing climate of the hills make it an amazing road tour of Sri Lanka and will etch a permanent spot in your heart for an eternity.

You traverse the mountain terrain and it is a challenging ride, need your best attention, but the beauty of this Sri Lanka trip hidden uncertainty of the terrain. Road trip conditions: The road spans 176 km through the mountains. A sharp increase of elevation of the road starts in Awissawella and it ends at an altitude of 1800 meters above sea level in Nuwara Eliya. The journey will take around 1 day with sightseeing stops. The best time to visit from November to April.

Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route are:

Kitulgala: Adventure sports centre for water rafting, trekking, bird watching etc Talawakele: Devon fall, St.clairs waterfall Nanuoya: Horton plains national park Nuwara Eliya: Ambewela farm, strawberry farm, Seetha Amman temple, Haggala gardens hikkaduwa beach sri lanka

4. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Arugam Bay via Kandy

This is one of the best roads in the island at present, and well worth your time. You start the journey on the west coast and end the tour on the east coast of Sri Lanka, at the widest point of the country. The journey will take around 8 hours without any stops, so calculate the time required for the tour with all the stops for sightseeing and other breaks along the way. The trip to Arugambe from Colombo is one of the most popular activity among the road trip enthusiasts in Sri Lanka. If you have a good driving stamina, you will be able to reach Arugam Bay within 2 days with visits to important tourist attractions.

This will be a very picturesque and experience rich road trip of Sri Lanka, you will encounter mountains, escapements, patches of forests, beaches and all other geographical conditions available on the island. The route from Kandy to Arugambe via Bibile is one of the most beautiful trips through forests in Sri Lanka, that you will ever take.  Plan your road trip on a motorbike, so that you can enjoy the refreshing, unpolluted air in this greenish area. Road trip conditions: The road spans 329 km through the central mountain range. You start the journey at lower elevated areas in the west coast and ends the journey at the east coast beaches, while halfway down the track you will touch the point, which is 500 meters above sea level.

Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route are:

Kandy: tooth relic temple, Peradeniya botanical garden Kegalle: Pinnawala elephant orphanage Arugambe: beach hopping Sri Lanka travel route, Sri Lanka travel, road trip of Sri Lanka

5. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Anuradhapura via Puttalam

The travellers can’t put forward an awesome road trip of this nature along pristine beaches and through the untamed wilderness.  This road trip will be a memorable experience due to the fascinating blend of wildlife, coastal, cultural and historical experience. So much in a one road trip! so, get prepared yourself and hit the road. This is a very picturesque Sri Lanka travel route through some of the least populated areas in the central province, you drive the large part of your trip through the wildlife reserve, there is a high possibility of spotting wild elephants as you travel from Puttalam to Saliyawewa.

Road trip conditions: The road spans 207 km along north-west Sri Lanka and makes sharp turn inland at Puttalam. The journey takes around 4 hours. The moderate traffic can be experienced between Colombo and Puttalam and the road is empty after that. Be careful as you have to travel through the forested areas after Puttalam. It is best to avoid travelling at night on this Sri Lanka travel route due to the wild elephants. Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route are: Wilpattu: for safari at the national park Negombo: for beach hopping Puttalam: Munneswarama and Manawari temple Anuradhapura: Historical monuments Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Trincomalee via Dambulla

6. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Trincomalee via Dambulla

This is another popular Sri Lanka travel route to reach the east coast of Sri Lanka from Colombo, you avoid going through the central mountain range in this road trip and your destination is located more towards the North-east part of the island. This is a popular road trip of Sri Lanka among the foreign travellers because of every year a large number of traveller heading to Trincomalee beaches in the month of July, August, September and October. This is one of the busiest roads in Sri Lanka and you have to pass many heavily populated cities such as Dambulla, Kurunegala.

Therefore it will take around 6 hours to reach the east coast of Sri Lanka from Colombo on this route. You will travel through the highly forested area after Habarana, which is a part of Gal Oya national park. There is a high possibility of encountering a family of the wild elephant as you traverse through the forest. The entire distance you have to cover is 268 km and it will take around 6 hours for this road trip of Sri Lanka. Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route is: Dambulla: Golden cave temple Kegalle: Pinnawala elephant orphanage Habarana: Minneriya safari Sigiriya: Visit Sigiriya rock fortress Kurunegala

7. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Kandy via Kegalle

By far this is the busiest Sri Lanka travel route and one of the most popular road trips of Sri Lanka, mainly due to the ending point of the route, which is Kandy, one of the most popular UNESCO world heritage sites in the country. Kandy is one of the most popular travel destinations in the mountains and harbours a large number of tourist attractions. It is believed that every Sri Lanka tour package should be included with Kandy.

Kandy is the cultural centre of Sri Lanka and most popular holiday destination on the island. Kandy is the most important transport interchange in the central province and connects all corners of the country and important cities. Therefore most road leading to Kandy is very busy, especially the route From Colombo to Kandy. You have to plan the road trip with the time you lose in the traffic. This Sri Lanka road trip to Kandy is something every traveller wishes to take, and it is an easy gateway from most parts of the country. The picturesque lush green foliage can be seen for the most part of the trip and this is a trip to relax and unwind you.

Road trip conditions: The distance you have to cover is 115 km. This Sri Lanka road trip requires little bit longer than usual due to the mountain terrain, and the journey takes around 4 hours from Colombo to Kandy. This is one of the best road trips in Sri Lanka for photography, be careful, the battery of your camera will be drained, sooner than you expect. Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route is: Kegalle: To visit Pinnawala elephant orphanage Mawanella: to visit Embekke Devala, Gadaladeniya Kelaniya: Kelaniya temple Peradeniya: Royal botanical garden Kandy: temple of the tooth relic Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Rathnapura

8. Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Rathnapura

This scenic road between Colombo and Ratnapura put most Sri Lanka western province road trips to shame; this main road is one of the most favourable among the nature lovers. The Ratnapura itself is a city in the woods and claim for a part of the most valuable patch of forest on the country known as Sinharaja rainforest. As you get nearer to Ratnapura the foliage gets denser and can see the canopy formed by the gigantic trees on either side of the road. Ratnapura is a major city with high rainfall on the island, and therefore coming often under water, during the monsoon rain.

Check on the weather before you start with this Road trip. And plan your trip with at least 2 days of sightseeing in the area, here you get waterfalls, rainforest, trekking sites, museum, and many many more. Road trip conditions: It will take around 2 hours to cover this short stretch of 75 km and makes an enjoyable road trip. There will be a noteworthy traffic congestion at the beginning of the trip but it diminishes gradually as you drive towards Ratnapura and road become very much empty once you have done with the first half of the trip. Some of the places to stop on this Sri Lanka travel route is: Rathnapura: Bopath Ella waterfall, saman Devala temple

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Sanjeewa Padmal (Seerendipity tours)

This blog is all about travelling in Sri Lanka, I am trying to illuminate my readers with a wide range of information related to Sri Lanka travel. Please feel free to contact me at any time if you need more information. Furthermore, we can organize your holiday package or any travel related requirement in Sri Lanka. Please contact us on

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