Sri Lanka: Sun, Sea, and Safari | Yampu Tours

Custom Travel Experiences Since 1998


Sri Lanka: Sun, Sea, and Safari


FROM £$ 9648

Private Tour Highlights

  • Explore Negombo's medieval churches, bustling fish market, and picturesque beaches.
  • Safari adventure in Wilpattu National Park, home to leopards, elephants, and sloth bears.
  • Discover Sigiriya Rock Fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage site with a fascinating royal history.
  • Visit Dambulla Cave Temple, featuring ancient Buddha statues and religious art.
  • Experience local life in Hiriwadunna village with a trek, catamaran ride, and traditional lunch.
  • Jeep safari in Minneriya National Park to see elephants in their natural habitat.
  • Whale and dolphin watching in Trincomalee, famous for its blue whale population.
  • Hike to Little Adam’s Peak in Ella for stunning views of valleys and tea plantations.
Interested in this tour?   Let us build you a customized quote based on your budget.

Tour Overview

Discover the captivating essence of Sri Lanka with this diverse itinerary, which highlights the island’s natural beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture. Starting from the sunny coastal town of Negombo, known for its scenic beaches and bustling fish markets, you’ll venture into the wilderness of Wilpattu National Park for an exhilarating safari experience. The cultural heart of Sri Lanka awaits in Sigiriya, where you’ll explore the iconic Sigiriya Rock Fortress and the ancient Dambulla Cave Temple. Immerse yourself in the tranquil village life of Hiriwadunna and witness the majestic elephants of Minneriya National Park.

Continuing eastward, the picturesque beaches of Trincomalee offer a chance to marvel at the ocean’s silent giants during a whale and dolphin-watching excursion. Relax and enjoy the serene surroundings of Kalkudah before heading to the lush highlands of Ella, where tea plantations and breathtaking vistas abound. Conclude your adventure with a visit to the historic city of Galle, a UNESCO World Heritage site rich in colonial architecture and cultural charm. This itinerary promises an unforgettable experience, blending adventure, relaxation, and cultural immersion in the enchanting land of Sri Lanka.

- Accommodation in a Double / Twin on Bed & Breakfast Basis throughout the tour except Wilpattu which will be on Full board basis for Big Game and All Inclusive at Leopard Trails & Nine Skies
- The services of an English Speaking Chauffeur Guide throughout the round tour.
- Transportation by air-conditioned private car (sedan) as per the above itinerary (from arrival to
- Entrance fees to the sites & activities mentioned on the Itinerary
- Mineral water bottles in the vehicle
- Currently applicable government taxes.

- International or domestic flights (unless specified)
- Expenses of personal nature
- Entrance fees to the sites not mentioned above
- Cost for optional visits
- Lunch & Dinner during tour unless specified.
- Video and camera permits (where necessary)
- Any other services not specified above

Best Time to Travel

Best Good Consult

Package Price: From £$ 9648

Prices shown above are per person. Hotel categories do not adhere strictly to international ratings; Yampu has evaluated the hotels according to destination and availability. Prices include local airfare (where applicable), hotel accommodation including daily breakfast; all transfers with baggage handling, all guided tours in English and all entrance fees.

Please note that prices are subject to change based on availability and seasonality, especially during the holiday season from December 20th through January 5th each year. Please contact a Yampu Travel Specialist for more information on best times to travel.

Trip Type:

All our trips are operated on a private basis unless specified otherwise. This is only a sample itinerary; your Yampu Tour Consultant will personalize this trip for you according to your available dates, interests and type of hotels. This is your trip and we will work on making it perfect!

Tour Itinerary


Welcome to Sri Lanka – Negombo

Upon your arrival at Colombo airport, you'll be greeted by a Yampu Tours’ representative who will accompany you to your transfer vehicle for your journey to Negombo, where your hotel for the night awaits (Approximately 30 minutes' drive).

Negombo: Situated just 20 minutes away from the Bandaranaike International Airport, Negombo is a sunny coastal town that serves as an ideal starting or ending point for your Sri Lankan adventure. Known as ‘Little Rome’, Negombo offers diverse attractions including medieval churches, a bustling fish market, access to fresh seafood, and some of the most picturesque beaches in the country. The town's rich history, heavily influenced by the Dutch, is reflected in its architecture and culture.

Check-in at the hotel and unwind.

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Negombo – Wilpattu

In the morning, we'll head to the Negombo fish market, locally referred to as “Lellama” (Approximately 15 minutes' drive).

Negombo fish market: Once a quaint fishing village, Negombo still retains its charm with fishermen selling their fresh catch along sandy shores. Here, you can witness fish spread out on coconut fiber mats for sun drying, a traditional preservation method in Sri Lanka. This dried and salted fish is a culinary staple across the island.

After exploring the fish market, we'll continue our journey to Wilpattu (Approximately 3 hours' drive).

Wilpattu: Renowned for being the largest National Park in Sri Lanka, Wilpattu's name, meaning "Land of Lakes," perfectly describes its unique feature—numerous natural lakes that dot the landscape, providing essential watering holes for the park's wildlife.
Check in at your campsite and unwind for the remainder of the day.

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Experience

Experience the natural wonders of Wilpattu National Park.

Embark on an exciting safari adventure through Wilpattu National Park, Sri Lanka's largest and most famous reserve known for its incredible wildlife and stunning scenery. Explore dense forests, expansive grasslands, and serene lakes as you search for magnificent animals like leopards, elephants, sloth bears, and a variety of bird species. Wilpattu's untouched wilderness and diverse ecosystem promise an unforgettable safari experience for nature enthusiasts and wildlife admirers.

Spend the remainder of the day at your leisure, exploring the surroundings and enjoying the amenities of the camp.

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Wilpattu – Sigiriya

Today, embark on a journey to the culturally rich city of Sigiriya (Approximate driving time: 2 hours).

Sigiriya is renowned as one of Sri Lanka's top destinations, drawing travelers from around the globe. Its centerpiece is the awe-inspiring Sigiriya Rock Fortress, often hailed as the 8th wonder of the world. Yet, there's much more to explore, making Sigiriya a must-visit location in the country.

Upon reaching Sigiriya, settle into your resort and unwind.

Later in the day, explore the Dambulla Cave Temple: Nestled about 160m above the road in southern Dambulla, this magnificent Royal Rock Temple complex houses around 150 exquisite Buddha statues and paintings, showcasing some of Sri Lanka's most significant religious art. The origins of these Buddha images trace back over 2000 years, with successive kings contributing to and enhancing the cave's art.

Afterwards, return to your hotel and enjoy a leisurely evening.

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Sigiriya - Hiriwadunna – Sigiriya

Begin your day with a visit to the renowned Sigiriya Rock Fortress (Approximate drive time 25 minutes).

Sigiriya Rock Fortress: The story of Sigiriya is one of palace intrigues and royal drama, set against the backdrop of breathtaking landscapes. Prince Kasyapa's rebellion against his father, King Dhatusena, led to his imprisonment and the exile of his half-brother, the rightful heir, to India. Kasyapa established his reign at Sigiriya, constructing a remarkable rock fortress surrounded by moats and forests. His era, characterized by remarkable architecture and hydraulic engineering, met a tragic end in battle against his returning brother. Today, Sigiriya stands as a UNESCO World Heritage site, bearing witness to this tumultuous history.

Afterwards, immerse yourself in the local lifestyle at Hiriwadunna village (Approximate drive duration 15 minutes).
Hiriwadunna: Embark on a leisurely trek through the scrub jungle and village community, observing locals engaged in their daily activities of fishing and farming. Unlike the hustle and bustle of city life, here you'll find a serene ambiance filled with the chirping of birds and fluttering butterflies. Navigate through dense forest shrubs to reach a tranquil lake, where you'll board a catamaran to glide through waters adorned with green lily pads, offering picturesque views of surrounding forests, marshlands, and local farmers' vegetable plots.

Another highlight awaits as you embark on a land-master ride aboard a bullock cart, passing by paddy fields and rural vegetable plantations to reach a traditional village house. Here, witness the hosts preparing an authentic lunch using traditional Sri Lankan cooking methods. This adventure promises an unforgettable experience, allowing visitors to truly connect with Sri Lanka's rich culture.

After the excursion, return to the hotel and unwind amidst the cultural ambiance.

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Sigiriya - Polonnaruwa - Minneriya – Sigiriya

Begin your journey to Polonnaruwa (Approximate driving time: 2 hours).

Polonnaruwa ancient city: Nestled in the heart of the Cultural Triangle, Polonnaruwa stands as the remnants of the island's second kingdom. Established as the capital in 1056 AD, it served as the administrative hub until the 14th century when it succumbed to frequent Chola invasions from India. Despite its fall, the present-day city is adorned with remnants of its glorious past, including religious sites, monuments, and royal relics.

In the afternoon, set off on a safari adventure at Minneriya National Park (Approximate driving time: 30 minutes)

Safari at Minneriya National Park: Experience the thrill of a jeep safari through Minneriya and Kaudulla National Parks, where you'll encounter magnificent elephants. Listen for the resonating trumpet calls as herds gracefully traverse dusty trails, ensuring the safety of their young. Observe the nurturing instincts of elephant parents and their endearing interactions with their offspring. With luck, witness captivating displays of herd dynamics, including trunk gestures akin to a group handshake.

Return to the hotel after the safari and enjoy the remainder of the day at your leisure.

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Sigiriya – Kalkudah

Embark on a scenic drive eastwards to the picturesque beach destination of Trincomalee (Approximately 3 hours’ drive).

Trincomalee: Located on the eastern coast of Sri Lanka, near a historic natural harbor, Trincomalee is steeped in both mythological and historical significance. Offering a wide range of experiences, from cultural immersion to breathtaking scenery, it invites travelers to discover its charms. Explore Trincomalee to delve into its captivating beauty and rich heritage.

Upon arrival, settle into your hotel and unwind on the pristine turquoise beaches.

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Kalkudah - Trincomalee – Kalkudah

Today we will explore the silent giants of the Trincomalee waters.

Whale and Dolphin watching at Trincomalee: Sri Lanka's Indian Ocean offers diverse marine life, including dolphins, tropical fish, and various shark species. For an unforgettable whale-watching experience, visit Trincomalee, known for its vibrant surf scene and abundant whale sightings, including the world's largest resident blue whale population. Nilaveli and Uppuveli beaches are popular spots for whale watching and observing playful bottlenose dolphins, with occasional rare sightings of orcas (Early rise is required since the drive per way takes approximately 2 hours and the experiences starts at 0600 hrs).
On completion return to the hotel and relax the rest of the day.

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Leisure Day at Kalkuhah

Enjoy the resort amenities, services and the surrounding on a leisure pace.

Optional – Snorkelling: There is a world of wondrous life beneath the surface of the shimmering Pasikuda waters, and the best way to explore it is to put on some snorkelling gear and dive right in. Snorkelling in Pasikuda gives you plenty to explore as you experience its bountiful marine life and intricate stretches of coral reef. Wade out to the bay in front of the resort for a quick look at the surrounding fish life or inquire below for intermediate and advance snorkel locations (to be paid directly).

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Leisure Day at Kalkuhah

Another

Another leisure day at Kalkuhah!

Here are some optional activities to enhance your day: Start with a refreshing walk along Kalkudah Beach, enjoying the sunrise and the serene environment. Take a short trip to the nearby coconut plantations, where you can learn about the coconut cultivation process and enjoy fresh coconut water. For some adventure, head to the shallow waters for snorkeling and explore the vibrant underwater life and coral reefs. Later, stroll through the local market to experience its vibrant atmosphere and shop for local crafts and souvenirs. In the afternoon, enjoy a relaxing boat ride through the calm waters of the nearby lagoon, spotting various birds and taking in the tranquil scenery. End your day with a traditional Sri Lankan dance and music performance at a local venue.

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Kalkudah – Ella

Bid farewell to this charming location and make your way to Ella (Estimated travel time: 4 hours).

Ella: Tucked away in Sri Lanka’s highlands, Ella is a quaint town surrounded by towering peaks blanketed with verdant tea gardens and misty cloud forests. Embark on hillside treks, bathe in cascading waterfalls, and revel in Ella’s stunning mountainous scenery. Upon reaching Ella, check into your hotel and take some time to relax.

Enjoy an overnight stay in Ella.

Bid farewell to this charming location and make your way to Ella (Estimated travel time: 4 hours).

Ella: Tucked away in Sri Lanka’s highlands, Ella is a quaint town surrounded by towering peaks blanketed with verdant tea gardens and misty cloud forests. Embark on hillside treks, bathe in cascading waterfalls, and revel in Ella’s stunning mountainous scenery. Upon reaching Ella, check into your hotel and take some time to relax.

Enjoy an overnight stay in Ella.



Today we will explore the further beauties of Ella.

Ella sightseeing: Start your day with a visit to Halpewatta Tea Factory, offering insightful plantation tours and tea sampling. Tours run throughout the day, with morning visits recommended for optimal availability.

Then, marvel at the architectural feat of the Nine Arch Bridge, a colonial-era railway marvel. After lunch (to be paid directly), admire the majestic Ravana Falls, one of Sri Lanka's widest waterfalls. Conclude your day with a hike to Little Adam’s Peak, renowned for its stunning views. The hike, though moderate, rewards with breathtaking vistas of valleys and tea plantations. Wear comfortable shoes and prepare to be awestruck.
In completion, come back to the hotel and rest.

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Ella – Galle

Today your odyssey continues towards the UNESCO listed heritage city of Galle (Approximate drive time 4 hours).

On arrival in Galle, check-in at the hotel.

In the afternoon, enjoy walking tour across these historic streets.

Galle walking tour: Galle is a jewel. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this historic city is a delight to explore on foot, an endlessly exotic old trading port blessed with imposing Dutch-colonial buildings, ancient mosques and churches, grand mansions and museums. Wandering its rambling lanes you'll pass stylish cafes, quirky boutiques and impeccably restored hotels owned by local and foreign artists, writers, photographers and designers. less


International Flight Home

Check-out from the hotel well in advance and proceed towards the airport to connect with your departure flight home.

Check-out from the hotel well in advance and proceed towards the airport to connect with your departure flight home.

Negombo, Sri Lanka

Wilpattu National Park, Sri Lanka

Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

Habarana, Sri Lanka

Kalkudah, Sri Lanka

Passikudah, Kalkudah, Sri Lanka

Ella, Sri Lanka

Galle, Sri Lanka

Places You'll See

  • Negombo

    Negombo is a vibrant coastal city located just north of Colombo, known for its sandy beaches, fishing industry, and colonial-era architecture. The city’s bustling fish market, scenic lagoon, and Dutch Fort are popular attractions, offering visitors a glimpse into both local life and historical significance. Negombo’s proximity to Bandaranaike International Airport makes it a convenient starting point for travelers exploring Sri Lanka.

  • Wilpattu National Park

    Wilpattu National Park, the largest national park in Sri Lanka, is renowned for its unique “willus” or natural lakes and its rich biodiversity. Located in the northwest part of the island, Wilpattu is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts, offering the chance to spot leopards, elephants, sloth bears, and a variety of bird species. Its dense jungle and numerous water bodies create an ideal setting for safari adventures.

  • sigiriya-rock-srilanka


    Meaning “Lion Rock”, Sigiriya was once a palace and is now a historical and archeological site. The palace was built on the top of the 660-foot rock column, with a lion shaped gateway about half way up the rock’s face on a small plateau. The western face of the rock is covered in painted frescoes, and the Mirror Wall. There are also several beautiful gardens in within the city.

  • Kalkudah

    Kalkudah is a serene coastal village on the eastern coast of Sri Lanka, famous for its long stretches of unspoiled sandy beaches and clear turquoise waters. The calm seas make it an ideal destination for swimming, snorkeling, and other water activities. Kalkudah, together with its neighboring beach Passikudah, offers a tranquil retreat with a growing number of resorts and facilities catering to tourists seeking a peaceful getaway.

  • Ella

    Ella is a charming hill country village in Sri Lanka, renowned for its stunning landscapes, tea plantations, and laid-back atmosphere. Visitors are drawn to its picturesque vistas, including the famous Nine Arches Bridge, Ella Rock, and the cascading Ravana Falls. Ella offers numerous trekking opportunities and a cool climate, making it a popular destination for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts.

  • Galle

    Galle is a historic city on Sri Lanka’s southwest coast, known for its well-preserved colonial architecture and the iconic Galle Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The fort, built by the Portuguese and later fortified by the Dutch, encloses quaint streets lined with museums, galleries, cafes, and boutique shops. Galle’s rich history, charming seaside views, and cultural vibrancy make it a must-visit destination.

Hotel Options

4 Star Properties

Negombo : Jetwing Blue

Yala National Park Hotel : Big Game Camp

Sigiriya : Aliya Resort and Spa

Passikudah : Anantaya Passikudah

Ella : EKHO Ella

Galle : Radisson Blu -Galle

5 Star Properties

Wilpattu : Mahoora Wilpattu

Habarana : Cinnamon Lodge Habarana

Kalkudah : Amaya Beach

Ella : 98 Acres Resort & Spa

Galle : Le Grand – Galle

Luxury Properties

Negombo : Uga Riva

Yala : Leopard Trails

Sigiriya : Water Garden

Passikudah : Uga Bay

Ella : Nine Skies

Galle : Fort Bazaar


Lucy and John

Traveled April, 2012

India and Sri Lanka were an amazing combination

India and Sri Lanka were an amazing combination! The hustle of India is exciting, but also overwhelming so including Sri Lanka toward the end of our itinerary was an amazing way to relax and unwind! In India we were blown away by the service at the Deluxe hotels, and even the 4-star hotels. The hospitality in India is incredible with everyone working to make sure you are comfortable and happy. We loved the Oberoi hotels, the rooms were beautiful and the service was immaculate. The sites in India were truly amazing and we loved the elephant safaris and interactions were we were able to bathe and paint these gentle giants! During our long transfers in India our driver was pleasant, providing us with interesting facts but not overwhelming us with too many details or idle chatter.In Sri Lanka we absolutely loved the Temple of the Tooth, the atmosphere is so humbling and spiritual; absolutely a must-see! We loved the ancient site of Polonnaruwa and the lying down Buddha and the elephant orphanage at Pinnawela. We also really enjoyed climbing the Sigiriya rock fortress, although its not the best option for those who are scared of heights!

Traveled To


Traveled August, 2012

Had a wonderful time in Sri Lanka

Had a wonderful time in Sri Lanka and no small amount was due to my driver/guide Lankesh Peiris. He was knowledgeable, fluent in English and attentive to my needs and safety. His stellar driving skills were a marvel and so necessary in the Asian traffic dance! The cultural and wildlife experiences exceeded my expectations and perhaps most important was the hospitable, kind and gentle nature of the Sri Lankan people. As always Yampu has provided a first rate travel experience. Thanks!

Traveled To

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