SRI LANKA ROAD TRIP
Sri Lanka is blessed with some of the world’s most beautiful and dramatic tourist places, that you should seriously consider visiting on a Sri Lanka road tour, such as pristine beaches, rainforests, wildlife reserves, UNESCO world heritage sites and mountains. Most of these places see a large number of travelers. However, apart from popular tourist places such as the Sigiriya rock fortress, the island harbors thousands of many other off-the-beaten-track tourist places. In this blog post, we bring to your notice some of the tourist attractions that can be easily added to your next Sri Lanka road trip.
Sri Lanka is a South Asian island, which is far smaller than India and lies to the south of its big neighbor. Sure, Sri Lanka has also taken a battering at the hands of power-hungry militant groups and politicians and has seen more than its fair share of war and misery (with civil war from 1983 to 2009), but today Sri Lanka is a totally safe country without any terrorist groups. The island is safe, stable and open to trailblazing visitors in search of the ultimate cultural, history, nature and jungle experience.
HOW TO PLAN YOUR BEST SRI LANKA ROAD TRIP?
Sri Lanka road trip itinerary should be included with several key components if it is to be a well-balanced experience. You might not be able to include all important activities and places in your Sri Lanka road trip, but it will not be a daunting task to pack most of those interesting things into your Sri Lanka road tour, of course with proper planning. Planning your Sri Lanka road trips is very important to have an unforgettable Sri Lanka tour. Keep on reading, this blog post is to help you to plan the best Sri Lanka road trip itinerary.
IS SRI LANKA A SAFE HOLIDAY DESTINATION?
Sri Lanka? Isn’t that the home for the militant group, which introduced suicide bombers to the world? Isn’t that where Sarath Weerasekara filmed “Gamani“, a film based on a true story of Sri Lanka’s civil war and where the blood-stained battlefields of Southern Asia’s World War could be found? Right. You are thoughts are correct, we are talking about Sri Lanka, the lumbering small island at the southern tip of Asia.
The Sri Lankan civil war ended in 2009, which was the most welcoming news for the present generation on the island. The civil war was a big blow for the island’s economy and caused a heavy toll among the civilians, soldiers and rebels. Today after more than 10 years, Sri Lanka is one of the safest holiday destinations in the world with political and economic stability.
- Top 35 Sri Lanka trip places
- 10 popular family trip places in Sri Lanka
- Snorkelling trips in Sri Lanka
- 10 Places To Visit In Sri Lanka Trip Itinerary
- One day trip places from Colombo
- Round trip Sri Lanka from India
- 10 Places For Short Trips From Colombo
- Sri Lanka Trip to Colombo, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya
- 3 Days in Sri Lanka and 3 Day Trip Sri Lanka
What are the important things to be added to the Sri Lanka road trip itinerary?
- Cultural triangle of Sri Lanka -Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa. …
- A national park-Yala, Udawalawe, Wilpattu. …
- Hill station-Nuwara Eliya, Bandarawela, Haputale. …
- Beaches West coast, southern coast or east coast beaches. …
- Galle Fortress. …
- Bit of adventure -whitewater rafting, trekking. …
8 travel routes for your upcoming Sri Lanka road trip
- Sri Lanka road tour on the route Colombo-Kataragama:. …
- Sri Lanka trip from Colombo to Matara – Express way: …
- Travelling Colombo to Nuwara Eliya via Kitulgala:. …
- Sri Lanka road trip from Colombo to Arugam Bay via Kandy. …
- The road trip of Sri Lanka on travel route Colombo to Anuradhapura via Puttalam. …
- Road tripping from Colombo to Trincomalee via Dambulla. …
- Sri Lanka travel route Colombo to Kandy via Kegalle. …
- The road trip of Sri Lanka from Colombo to Rathnapura. …
7 useful ideas for your Sri Lanka road trip
- Adventure trip Kithulgala Water Rafting Package
- Road trip to Sri Lanka upcountry with Kandy
- Road trip to Kandy from Colombo and Bentota
- 2 Days Kandy-Nuwara Eliya road trip
- The Essence of Sri Lanka Cultural Triangle- Kandy and Sigiriya Tour
- Sri Lanka road trip to Cultural Triangle
- Adventure Lanka road trip – Sri Lanka 5 Nights Tour
What are the 5 best selling Sri Lanka road trips?
- Sri Lanka splendour – 7 days Sri Lanka road trip
- Simply Sri Lanka-8 days tour with luxury accommodation
- Sri Lanka culture cocktail-6 days Sri Lanka road trip
- Essential Sri Lanka-11 days Sri Lanka road trip
- Sri Lanka classic tour- 7 days private Sri Lanka road trip
Venturing on a Sri Lanka road trip is the best way of exploring this fascinating tropical island and I believe every road trip of Sri Lanka should be planned carefully in order to reflect the natural, cultural, historical values of the country. This blog post is about road tripping in Sri Lanka and mean to serve travelers, who are looking for information to plan a memorable Sri Lanka holiday experience.
What are the top 5 places for a one-day Sri Lanka road trip?
Negombo-37 km from Colombo-1 hour drive
Colombo city tour
Kandy-117 km from Colombo-3 hours drive
Witpattu national park-166 km from Colombo-3 hours drive
Galle-126 km from Colombo-2 hours drive
IF YOU LIKE TO HAVE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THESE DAY TOURS FROM COLOMBO, KINDLY CHECK MY ARTICLE UNDER THE HEADING, “TOP 5 PLACES TO VISIT IN SRI LANKA IN ONE DAY“.
What are the top 5 places for two-day Sri Lanka road trips?
1. Nuwara Eliya – 175 km from Colombo
The duration of the road trip is 2 days and includes the elephant park, tooth relic temple, tea gardens, Nuwara Eliya, Gregory lake, Seetha temple, and many other interesting places. More information.
2. Yala National park – 281 km from Colombo
This 2 day Sri Lanka trip takes place along the western and southern coast of Sri Lanka. The 2 days trip allows you to visit many interesting places such as Yala national park, Hikkaduwa, Galle, Tangalle, Kataragama, and Kataragama. More information on this trip.
3. Polonnaruwa – 225 km from Colombo
Polonnaruwa is one of the most popular ancient cities on the island with many dozens of historical monuments. The ancient temples, palaces, statues, parks and hospitals are among the prominent exhibits in the old city. Read more on this Sri Lanka trip.
4. Kitulgala – 102 km from Colombo
This 2 days tour includes Whitewater rafting, bird watching as well a rain forest trek in Kitulgala. The tour also includes Kandy as well as the elephant park Pinnawala. Read more on this Sri Lanka road trip.
5. Mirissa Beach – 150 km from Colombo
The tour to this popular beach holiday in Sri Lanka includes visits to Hikkaduwa, Mirissa beach, Madu estuary, Galle fort as well as Whale watching trip off Mirissa. More information.
What are the top five 3 day trip places for a Sri Lanka road trip?
1. Anuradhapura – 200 km from Colombo
Anuradhapura is the most ancient city of Sri Lanka, which is tucked away 200 km from Colombo. This 3 days road trip of the cultural triangle includes Anuradhapura, Sigiriya, Dambulla, Kandy, and Polonnaruwa. These 3 days Sri Lanka road tour mainly covers the important religious and cultural sites of the cultural triangle of Sri Lanka.
2. Kandy – 117 km from Colombo
Kandy is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Sri Lanka and gateway to Sri Lanka’s hill country. The city of Kandy draws a large number of travelers every day due to its large number of tourist places. tooth relic temple, royal botanical garden, Pinnawala elephant orphanage, cultural show, museums, tea gardens, and a large array of shops are some of the favorite places for travelers. The 3 days trip to Kandy also includes many other tourist attractions like Nuwara Eliya, Elephant orphanage, tooth relic temple, royal botanical garden, and Kandyan cultural show.
3. Polonnaruwa – 225 km from Colombo
Polonnaruwa is the second most ancient city of Sri Lanka and attracts a large number of tourists of Sri Lanka. The ancient city of Polonnaruwa harbors thousands of ancient constructions, such as temples, palaces, stupas, gardens, audience halls, and many more. as Polonnaruwa is the place to many dozens of ancient monuments of Sri Lanka, which lies 225 km from Colombo.
4. Yala – 166 km from Colombo
Yala national park of southern Sri Lanka is the most popular national park for wildlife tours in Sri Lanka. There is a big demand for a wildlife tour of Yala from Colombo and west coast beach resorts. This 3 days wildlife tour starts from Colombo and includes many interesting places such as Yala, Galle fort, Mirissa, Hikkaduwa and Madu estuary, and Bentota.
5. Mirissa Beach – 150 km from Colombo
Mirissa is a coastal village in southern Sri Lanka and was a popular hideout for leisure seekers. But, today Mirissa is not only popular for beach holidays but also for whale watching. 3 days trip to Mirissa is a popular program, which allows you to spot a large number of blue whales and many other sea creatures as well as plenty of time for a leisurely beach holiday.
Sri Lanka in a holiday destination perspective
The island is small in size but the country is big from a holiday destination perspective. The country has a stunning landscape, pristine beaches, fascinating culture, and century’s old archaeological sites. Nestled kissing the southern tip of India, the island is inhabited by 21 million people, it is difficult to think that someone easily overlooks the island in favor of other holiday destinations in Asia, due to its popularity as a holiday destination.
History of Sri Lanka
The history of Sri Lanka goes back to many thousands of years and the island was inhabited even during the stone age. The stone age existed in the country in 2 phases pre-pottery and pottery. The stone age human being named homo sapiens Balangodensis lived in the area of Balangoda. Since then the island is continuously inhabited by humans.
The island is one of the few countries in the world, which was continuously inhabited by humans from the stone age period. Archaeologists have discovered a large number of stone implements, parts of the animal, seeds of plants and trees and many other objects that were used by these ancient people. Most road trips of Sri Lanka include a cultural triangle in the central province, where people can see the remnants of Sri Lanka’s rich historical past.
Colonial History of Sri Lanka
The island was occupied by Portuguese, Dutch and British for more than 400 years. Nevertheless, the island was frequented by Arab traders as early as the 15’s. The advent of the Portuguese in 1505 marked the setting off of colonial administration that existed more than 400 years on the island.
The country has a large number of colonial reminiscences, especially along the coastal belt, palaces, churches, fortifications, and aqueducts are most common among them. Portuguese ruled the country from 1505 AD to 1656 AD and the Dutch ruled the country until 1796 AD from 1656 AD.
Dutch administration was ceded to the British without any bloodshed in 1796 AD and rules the country until 1948 AD. Being a country that belonged to the British Empire and part of British allies, Sri Lanka suffered heavy casualties during the Second World War. Japanese had heavily bombed many parts of the island due to its strategic importance.
You need a multi-day Sri Lanka road trip to explore the island for sure because there is a large number of important places scattered on the island. The island boasts to have one of the best road networks in the region and travelers can reach any part of the island with ease, during their Sri Lanka road trip. There is a large number of options for travelers to get around the island such as taxis, public buses, trains, taxis, self-driven vehicles, TUK TUK.
Getting around on your Sri Lanka road trip
The most effective but expensive transport method is a taxi. If you have limited time and like to see and experience as much as possible during your Sri Lanka road trip, a taxi is the best bet for your success. A private vehicle with a local driver is the best way to embark on your road trip and it has a good ROI. Taxis fare is cheap on the island compared to most other countries in the region. The cost of a taxi is 60 Rs per kilometer and there are some additional charges if you keep the vehicle in your possession for a few days.
If you are not worried about time and considering to be sparse on expenses public transport such as Public buses and trains are the best options for you. It saves you a lot of money compared to what you need to pay for a Taxi. Whereas other methods are concerned, TUK TUK is suitable only for short drives and not good for a multi-day Sri Lanka road trip.
The self-driven vehicle can be obtained in the resort areas but is strongly not recommended for foreigners due to unfamiliarity on the roads and traffic. Therefore traveling by car with a local chauffeur is the best option in order to explore the island.
Sri Lanka road tour: exploring Cultural triangle
Kandy is one of the essential parts of a Sri Lanka road trip because Kandy considered being the cultural center of the island. Kandy was the capital and ruling center of the Kandyan kingdom until the Kandyan Kingdom was ceded to the British crown in 1796, and many of the old structures built by Kandy kings are still in very good shape. The historical part of the city is a UNESCO world heritage site and includes many prominent landmarks and buildings such as Buddhist temples, Hindu shrines, museums.
Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, and Kandy mark the 3 corners of the cultural triangle and are full of architectural goodness. The cultural triangle is not only abundant in cultural sites but also in many other important natural attractions such as national parks, mountains, forests. You can take a bullock cart ride, and do kayaking in a village tank, visit farmland or even have a cooking class at a village house. Drop into a village school if you can find the time, visiting school children will be a highlight of the day, while children also enjoy seeing the visitors.
Anuradhapura, the first base of Sri Lanka road trip
Usually, Anuradhapura is the first base of exploration for most travelers, who start the Road trip from Colombo (airport) and choose to explore the island from a historical angle. Anuradhapura is a true cultural and historical hub and you can spend months exploring the engineering and artistic feats of ancient people.
What do we see in Anuradhapura?
Every corner of Anuradhapura is bestowed with numerous historical monuments and several areas in the old city are declared as world heritage sites and boast to have staggering hundreds of temples, palaces, ponds, Buddha statues, hospitals built many centuries ago.
As you step into Anuradhapura, you feel like being at an archaeological zoo, you see numerous historical constructions all around you. In order to admire the artistic and historical jewel, a much-preferred transport mode is a cycle. As it allows you to move briskly while giving easy access to every piece of the monuments.
One of the wonderful things about Anuradhapura is that you can enjoy the priceless, historical monument at your own pace with freedom. Even though Anuradhapura attracts a large number of fans, due to the vastness of its area, you would miss much of the crowd, as they scattered over a vast area. The historical monuments in Anuradhapura are much older than the monuments in other historical places such as Polonnaruwa and Kandy. Some of the artifacts are more than 2 thousand years old.
Can I visit Polonnaruwa on my Sri Lanka road trip
It is Polonnaruwa you encounter after Anuradhapura in this road trip, which showcases some of the medieval constructions and another architecturally rich town; it showcases a large number of artifacts dating back to the 13th century. Most historical constructions of this magnificent walled city belong to King Parakramabahu, Nissanka Malla and King Vijayabahu. The archaeological leftover found in Polonnaruwa is in very good condition and much much younger compared to the artifacts found in Anuradhapura.
Is it possible to visit Sigiriya and Dambulla on Sri Lanka road trip?
“Is it possible to visit Sigiriya and Dambulla on a Sri Lanka road trip?”, this is a very common question among travelers. A large number of travelers are very interested in visiting these UNESCO world heritage sites. Therefore, Sigiriya and Dambulla are part of most Sri Lanka trips, especially if you book a multi-day Sri Lanka road tour, there is a high possibility of visiting these iconic tourist attractions.
Why is Sigiriya important?
Sigiriya rock fortress is another world heritage site, dating back to the 5th century AD. Sigiriya is one of the oldest landscaped gardens in Asia and part of most Sri Lanka road trips organized for travelers on the island.
Why is Dambulla cave temple important?
A visit to the cultural triangle is incomplete if you miss Dambulla golden cave temple. This is one of the most historical temples on the island as well as in the regions, dating back to the 1st century B.C. The temple is comprised of 5 spacious granite caves that cling to the southern slope of the mountain.
The upward trek to the temple is strenuous but well rewarded, a large number of ancient paintings and statues can still be seen as you stroll through the caves of this UNESCO world heritage site. Ceiling paintings with intricate designs and natural colorings decorate the temple for many centuries.
Hundreds of Buddha statues and god figures belong to different periods in the past resting here. The temple is under the supervision of the archaeological department and managed by the chief incumbent of the Dambulla temple. An entrance fee of 10 USD is charged to every foreign visitor.
Visiting tooth relic temple on the Sri Lanka road trip
Kandy is another landmark of the three corners of the Cultural Triangle, Kandy is a much younger historical site compared to its other 2 counterparts and has an extended colonial inheritance, while Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa hardly show any reminiscence of colonial influence.
Kandy is one of the most important holiday destinations on the island, due to its interesting mountaineering landscape and much cooler climate compared to low land areas of the country.
If you are fond of natural attractions such as cascading waterfalls, rivers, forests, mountains. Then Kandy should be given a prominent place in your itinerary. Don’t forget to visit the holy temple of the tooth relic or Dalada Maligwa. Kandy cultural show can be a nice surprise for you and it has a very cultural atmosphere as many dancers and drummers perform for more than 1 hour.
Visiting wildlife reserves on the Sri Lanka road trip
Wildlife is also abundant here with many national parks such as Minneriya, Yala national park. Making a safari in a wildlife park is the best way to experience the fascinating wildlife of this island during your Sri Lanka road trip.
What are the best national parks to visit on a Sri Lanka road trip?
Sri Lanka has several dozens of national parks and most of them are capable of giving you unforgettable wildlife experiences. However, by considering the most popular travel routes, I would like to suggest wildlife reserves.
- Minneriya National park
- Kaudulla National park
- Ecopark park
- Yala national park
- Udawalawe national park
Minneriya, Kaudulla, and eco-park are 3 prominent places for an interesting safari in the dry zone. These national parks are located within the cultural triangle. Due to the proximity of these national parks to the cultural sites, it can be easily added to a Sri Lanka road trip while visiting the cultural triangle. After all, having seen so many cultural and historical places it is time to dip into a bit of nature.
If you like to have the best Sri Lanka wildlife tour, I suggest you head to the deep south of Sri Lanka and take a wildlife tour at Yala. Yala is the most popular wildlife reserve, where the travelers are able to witness a wide range of animals such as Leopards, Elephants, Jackal, Bear, etc
Adding the scenic rail journey to the Sri Lanka tour
There is a well-developed railway network in the country and it allows travelers to reach many important cities on the island. But for leisure travelers, who wish to experience the beautiful nature of the island, it is the upcountry railway track between Kandy and Ella, the most suitable. You can enjoy breathtaking scenery in the lush green verdant hills.
Starting from Kandy the train moves slowly into the high altitude areas through the tea plantations, vegetable plots, tunnels, patches of forests, over the bridges and beautiful countryside, providing no excuses to omit this 4 hours spectacle.
Visiting Nuwara Eliya on the Sri Lanka road trip
Most probably, Nuwara Eliya is the next station on your Sri Lanka road trip; you will see a great number of beautiful scenery as drive uphill through the mountains and tea plantations. The city lies in a valley well above 1800 meters from sea level and is well known for its healing climate, alluring countryside, due to the very reason Nuwara Eliya is the most popular hill station on the island.
Nuwara Eliya is a popular holiday destination for many centuries, starting during the British administration in the early 1800s. Even today Nuwara Eliya is considered to be the destination with the best healing climate.
Adding a bit of adventure to your Sri Lanka road trip
You need to detour off the main road in Nuwara Eliya if you wish to get adventurous along the way. As you pass Nuwara Eliya take the first turn to the right and you are well on your way to Kitulgala, which is the main adventure sports center on the island. There are many hiking trails, adventure routes, nature trails, caving paths, waterfalls, rivers and rainforest for your disposal.
Exploring southern Sri Lanka on your Sri Lanka road trip
As you go downhill from Nuwara Eliya it is Yala, where you encounter several national parks such as Yala, Udawalwe and Bundala, where you could easily be lost with wildlife. Kataragama temple is the most important religious hub in the southern part of the island, where people of all three religions gather for religious activities.
Jeep safari at Yala national park
Yala national park is situated at the southern tip of the island. It is one of the best places to see leopards in the world with the highest concentration of leopards in a given land area of its size. Apart from Leopards, elephants, bears, deer, crocodiles, wild buffaloes, monkeys, jackals, and many species of birds can be seen here.
Usually, the Yala national park and southern part of the island including in Sri Lanka road trips that last more than seven days, the southern coastal area is not included in most short trips due to its remoteness from Colombo. If the road trip does not include Yala national park, one can opt for Minneriya or any other national park in the central province. Most Sri Lanka road trips that last about one week or less do not cover the southern part of the country, due to the remoteness from Colombo.
Adding a tour of Galle to Sri Lanka road tour
You may have lost at least five days of your trip so far since you started your Sri Lanka road trip from Colombo but have a wander around Galle, be sure to head to the Galle Fort, which is a world heritage site and one of the best-preserved fortification of Dutch administration in the region. Star bastion that lies overlooking the ocean is a gorgeous viewpoint to make beautiful pictures of the sunset.
Galle Fort is an architectural melting point where you witness a large number of houses, religious places, hotels, museums, and galleries in various styles. But most prominent is the Dutch architecture with a large collection of building inherited from the Dutch administration in the country.
This magnificent fort is dating back to the 15th century and is one of the best-preserved forts in the region. It served as the main bastion of Dutch occupants on the island from 1656 to 1796. There are a large number of houses, churches, shops, restaurants, hotels, museums, galleries within this walled city. Today Galle Fort is a UNESCO world heritage site and the most popular tourist attraction on the island.
See the whales on your Sri Lanka road trip
Whale watching tours are offered in southern Sri Lanka off Mirissa and Dewundara harbors as well as in the eastern part of the island. This is a highly seasonal activity and is available only from November to April on the west coast, while whale watching tours are offered from May to October on the east coast. With the whale watching trips, the travelers are able to have a closer look at blue whales at their doorstep.
If you have an overnight stay in the south during your Sri Lanka road trip, you might have an opportunity to spot blue whales off Mirissa or Duwundara. You can buy a ticket for a whale watching trip from a tour operator and it cost $ 40.00 per person with breakfast served onboard. The vessels set off either from Mirissa or Devundara fishing harbors in the early hours (06.00 hrs) every day during the season. Many boat owners offer whale watching trips but the advance reservation of seats is highly recommended to guarantee a seat in a vessel.
The road trip of Sri Lanka and Beach holiday
The entire belt along the ocean starting from Galle to Chilaw in northwest Sri Lanka is popular for tourism; fishing and toddy industries are the other noteworthy industries for the income of the people here. You can have a beach holiday in this part of the country if you plan your Sri Lanka road trip during the six months starting from November.
What is the best time for Sri Lanka road trip?
November to April considered being the best time of the year for a Sri Lanka road trip. A large part of the island is spared from the monsoon rain during this period. Therefore, the south coast, west coast, hill country, and the cultural triangle have dry weather making it suitable to travel on Sri Lanka tour. However, the same period makes it not suitable to travel to the east coast due to the heavy rain.
Sri Lanka road trip from April to November
If you wish to have your Sri Lanka road trip from November to April; the ideal place for a beach holiday would be the Eastern part of the country and beach resorts such as Nilaweli, Pasikudah, Kalkudah and Batticaloa are the best options with dry weather, calm and safe sea without underwater current. During this period the sea off west and southern part of the country is not very suitable for sea bath, diving, snorkeling and other activities in the sea, it is very windy and waves are choppy and accompany monsoon rain very often.
Sri Lanka road trip as a package tour-Sri Lanka splendour
A 7-day Sri Lanka road trip (Sri Lanka splendor) will allow you to experience most places highlighted above. With this road trip of Sri Lanka, 8 days the travelers are able to cover a lot of ground (suppose travel by private vehicle) but still miss several places such as northern Sri Lanka, the hiking trails in Ella and Kitulgala and beaches in the east coast.
A 7-day Sri Lanka road trip costs US$ 590 per person (all-inclusive price) on double sharing, the accommodation middle-class hotels (4* accommodation). However, the rates can be reduced by choosing a lower category of accommodation. The package includes daily two meals (breakfast and dinner), air-conditioned comfortable rooms, a private bathroom with hot/cold water, twin beds, a tea/coffee making machine and an outdoor swimming pool. This is a private tour, which means that guests get their own vehicle with a local driver/guide.
Most Sri Lanka road trips follow the same route, hitting the cultural triangle in the central province, up-country with tea plantations, southern Lanka with safari and beaches towards the end of the trip. All road trips come with added paid add-ons throughout the tour and tourists are free to choose any combination of them.
You can get more information on this road trip itinerary or any other tour package, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is the best Sri Lanka road trip itinerary for 7 days?
- Day 1 Colombo/Sigiriya
- Day 2 Sigiriya/Polonnaruwa/Sigiriya
- Day 3 Sigiriya/Dambulla/Kandy
- Day 4 Kandy/Nuwara Eliya
- Day 5 Nuwara Eliya/Yala
- Day 6 Yala/Bentota
- Day 7 Bentota/Colombo
Map of Sri Lanka splendour 7 days road trip
Going on your own Sri Lanka road tour
Sri Lanka is not a difficult country to do solo, however, I have written several articles on solo travel in Sri Lanka, please check these two articles, you might be able to get some information about your solo venture. There is only a handful of information about hotels and other facilities available for tourists.
You might be able to gather some information at the tourist board office in Colombo and they have 2 websites. The tourist board has a tourist information center, which is very handy if you are on your first visit to the island. You can find some general information that you need to plan your road trip to Sri Lanka. If you face any difficulty during your and you need help, you should contact the tourist board in the first place, and they help you to find the solution to your problem.
Gathering information for your Sri Lanka road tour
TripAdvisor, lonely planet websites are also very helpful to get the general information required to plan your road trip to Sri Lanka such as transportation, entrance fees but they do provide very limited information.
Due to the lack of information for tourists, it will be difficult to figure out the prices for accommodation, transportation, entrance, etc, but online portals and blogs will be useful sources to gather some information.
There are many online portals providing the possibility to book accommodation, transport, sightseeing tours online but they do charge as much as 15%-25% commission from the travelers. Therefore, the best way to book the accommodation you need is through local tour operators, because they do get a special discounted rate from the local accommodation provider, these discounted rates are not published on the internet. Usually, the discounted rates are applied when you buy a package tour.
As far as transportation for your road trip in Sri Lanka is concerned, it is a daunting task to go to the most interesting places using public transport and travelers are required to use the service of taxis. But traveling solo on the island is totally allowed – though very few people are doing so. If you have experience being a solo traveler life is much easier.
Tourist board contacts
DIAL 1912 from any phone within the island
Sri Lanka Tourism Head Office
No. 80, Galle Road, Colombo 03, Sri Lanka.
+94 112426900, +94 112 440001 / 2426984
Important tips for Sri Lanka road trip
Avoid pipe born water and Stick to mineral water for drinking water
A bottle of mineral water (1 liter) costs about 50 cents USD, but the price varies depending on the brand. Most hotels provide 2 bottles of mineral water per room per day without any extra charge and it is placed in the room by the room boy or girl. Running water can be used for the purpose of cleaning purposes, you can even wash your mouth with it. Drinking tap water is safe for local people but not for foreigners. The water may contain microorganisms that your body is not familiar with, and can cause you to have some trouble.
Taking enough of fluid is essential during the road trip of Sri Lanka
Taking plenty of fluid is very important during your Sri Lanka road trip to avoid dehydration. Sri Lanka is a tropical country therefore warm and humid one needs to take at least 1 liter of water per day. Add some minerals to your water because it is sweating here a lot.
Drinking king coconut on your road trip of Sri Lanka
If you like to drink something refreshing and delicious other than water try king coconut. They can be bought in every corner of the country. A coconut contains about 1 liter of fluid and includes a lot of minerals and vitamins. 1 coconut costs around 50 cents USD. Make sure the coconut is opened in front of you.
Visiting Temples in Sri Lanka
Foreigners are accepted in all temples around the island. Venturing on the Sri Lanka road invariably means visiting a couple of Buddhist temples. Visiting a Buddhist temple is undoubtedly the best way of learning the typical Sri Lanka life. If you travel to the Cultural triangle it is full of historical monuments are most of them have a close connection with Buddhism, which means most historical places in the cultural triangle are sacred places.
There are several important facts you need to know when you visit a Buddhist temple, such as a proper dress code. I have written a dedicated post on this matter under, “13 RULES YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE ENTERING A BUDDHIST TEMPLE”. Please check the article to know about Sri Lanka Buddhist temples and their rules and regulations.
What should you know about Sri Lankan food?
Avoid peeled fruits and salads as much as possible, if you have a meal outside the hotel. Avoid food sold in wayside meal carts, especially the peeled fruits and salads. They can cause you to have diarrhea and other abdominal problems, which are most common among foreign travelers. Because the hygienic standard of local food is questionable.
Eating Rice and Curry during the road trip Sri Lanka
One exception is eating rice and curry, it won’t cause you any problem because curry is prepared with a lot of spices such as cumin seeds, pepper, chili, cinnamon, saffron, etc and inherit germ-killing power. However, it is recommended have to have your meal in a clean and nice-looking restaurant.
Road trip Sri Lanka and Eating local food
Eating local food is one of the most exciting things for travelers in a foreign country. But if it poses a threat and can cause you to be sick avoiding such food is very essential. Even in Sri Lanka, one can enjoy local food as long as it is prepared to hygienic standards and stored properly. The food sold in tourist board registered restaurants or tourist hotels can be consumed without any fear, but we are talking about the food sold by street vendors, that are open to the dusty wind and vehicle smoke.
How to keep Mosquitoes away from you?
Avoiding mosquito bites are very easy and simple during your road trip to Sri Lanka. You just need to follow a few simple steps for it. Sri Lanka is a tropical country and mosquito is occurring in all parts of the country, especially in the low-elevated areas such as the Beach area, Colombo, cultural triangle. Mosquito is mostly occurring in the late evening and at night. If you stay outside the hotel in the evening use mosquito repellent to avoid mosquito bites.
If you see mosquitoes inside the room one can ask for a mosquito net from the housekeeping department. Keeping the air-conditioner running or keeping the ceiling fan working throughout the night is another 2 effective ways to keep mosquitoes away from you.
How to keep your valuables safe during your Sri Lanka road tour
Don’t leave any valuable items unattended in the hotel, which means don’t leave any items such as money, jewelry, passport, flight tickets in the room if you are not around. If something goes missing the hotels do not take responsibility for the lost items.
There are instances that travelers lost their value during the trips. Usually, most hotels provide safe boxes free of charge and keeping things locked in the safe is recommended. Is something lost in the rooms, the very first thing is to inform the hotel administration if there is no acceptable solution given from the hotel administration, you should rush to the tourist policies, which are available in all police stations.
Why you should choose Seerendipity for your Sri Lanka road trip
Seerendipity tour is a fully locally owned travel company with a head office in Colombo. The highly experienced local staff is a key strength of Seerendipity tours and they can plan your dream holiday to Sri Lanka.
Best price for your Sri Lanka vacation packages
When you book a tour with us, you directly book the tour with the local company, which means there are no middlemen and therefore you can guarantee the best price. Simply get in touch with us and let us know when you travel and what you like to see.
Plan your best Sri Lanka vacation packages with experts
Our staff makes a personalized program for you, which you can change until you find the best package for you. You can also browse our existing tour packages for inspiration; all our ready-made tour packages are customizable and can be tailored to meet all your expectations. Write to us at email@example.com