Explore Sri Lanka

Why visit Sri Lanka?

Golden sandy beaches, the lush greenery, friendly, helpful locals and eternal summer all year round - what more can you possibly ask for? With SriLankan Airlines offering direct flights to Sri Lanka from all corners of the world, this little piece of paradise is at your fingertips to explore and to discover.

Sri Lanka overwhelms the senses with its generosity – the breath stopping beauty of its surroundings, the smell of the enchanting temple flower, the piquant taste of myriad spices creating magical combinations, the feel of the warm ocean waters or the touch of the gentle mountain breeze - it truly is a treasure trove of experience.

When you’ve had too much sunshine, the mist robed mountains and cool, soothing climes are only a few hours away. Alternately, wade through exotic rain forests and create your own adventure, catch the sight of a majestic elephant or the imposing leopard roaming about in the wild. Explore the island steeped in centuries of history or be engrossed in a vibrant culture that wears its proud heritage like a bejewelled crown. Sri Lanka is truly a land like no other. Tempted to look up travel packages to Sri Lanka? Look no further. SriLankan Airlines is ever dedicated to take you wherever your heart desires.

So many places to go, so many things to see!

Colombo

Step on to a constantly bustling hub that rarely ever sleeps with an undeniable charm of its own. Visit Colombo, the country’s economic capital - a melting pot of culture which is also home to some of the best shopping and dining destinations in the country.

The legacy of the island’s quaint colonial heritage still remains intact in the Fort area amongst its imposing colonial buildings and shady boulevards where widespread restoration of its iconic colonial architecture has bestowed upon it an endearing old age charm. If you are keen on doing some shopping in Sri Lanka, Colombo is the place to be. Pettah brims with colour and vibrancy, rampant with bohemian markets where anything under the sun can be obtained at a reasonable price. But if you are looking for a more refined experience, a fascinating array of 5 star hotels in Colombo, boutique hotels and stylish eateries where you can indulge in the unique food culture of the country, galleries and museums to while away your time.

Soak up some sun and join in the fun!

Welcome to the land of eternal sunshine and never ending stretches of golden sand. Palm fringed beaches lapped at by azure waters warm with the sun’s languid embrace are dotted with tropical coves of picture-perfect beauty that your heart skip a few beats. Indulge in some surfing in Arugambay, snorkel and dive at Hikkaduwa and go whale and dolphin watching in Mirissa. Or simply lounge about the beach with a king coconut in hand with a view to kill for – either way you are going to be swept off your feet by these pristine stretches of sand that aim to please.

Don’t miss out on the island’s generous offering of seafood, fresh off the sea and prepared with expert finesse perfected over centuries of seafaring culture. You can also go out to sea with a local fisherman if the occasion rises and experience the sea their way while mingling with the locals, discovering their way of life.

Brush up on your history

Kings, queens, brutal wars, enigmatic plots, political kidnappings, malicious demons, primal gods and unsolved mysteries – the history of Sri Lanka is one of intrigue and fascination. Ancient temples, holy sanctuaries, remnants of the colonial era beautifully preserved with centuries of stories saturated within their walls. Explore the ruins at Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa amongst which history has been written and be amazed at the architectural wonders of Sigiriya, the ‘Fortress in the Sky’, known to be the 8th Wonder of the World. Don’t miss out the Dutch Fort in Galle, built by the Portuguese, fortified by the English through the doorway of which you step on to a different era.

Head on to Kandy, the last kingdom of Sri Lanka where the cobalt blue skies are occasionally pierced by mist-wrapped mountain tops with the glistening lake cradled amongst it all. Located 115km away from the capital at an altitude of 500m, this is a city steeped in centuries of history and eons of mystery which continue to lure visitors and mesmerize them with its effortless beauty.

Visit the Temple of the Tooth Relic – the crown jewel of Sri Lanka, a grand and ornate structure that holds within it the sacred tooth of Lord Buddha. Kandy is most renowned for Esala Perahara held between the months of July and August. This majestic procession is held in honour of the sacred Tooth Relic featuring exotic dancers, fire breathers, lavishly adorned elephants and stilt walkers in hundreds. Among the myriad temples and historic attractions, places that simply must not be missed are the Ambakke Temple, Gadaladeniya, Lankathilaka temple and the Degaldoruwa Raja Maha Viharaya hidden amongst its lush green foliage.

The wildlife awaits......

With one of the highest rates of biological endemism in the world, this tiny teardrop shaped island in the sun is second to none in the world when it comes to its inhabitants of the wild. Wildlife in Sri Lanka is definitely something to boast about. Majestic elephants roam about the wild in Uda Walawa while leopards roam about free, oblivious to their open mouthed visitors in the Yala sanctuary. And if you are really lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the silent Black Panther amongst the foliage stealthily gliding about!

Trekking in Sri Lanka is also a favourite past time of those who visit here. As you wade through the virgin rain forest of Sinharaja, who knows what you may come across! Look out for the dancing peacocks with their extravagant eye-spotted iridescent feathers and herds of white spotted dear roaming about. Endemic reptiles, insects and other never seen before animals await discovery within the depths of these pristine forests of Sri Lanka.

Bird lovers would be happy to know that, Sri Lanka is also known for its immense diversity in birdlife many of them endemic. For bird watching in Sri Lanka, head on to the Kumana sanctuary or take a boat along the Muthurajawela Marshlands and be mesmerized by these fascinating creatures of flight.

Ever seen an elephant orphanage? Head on to Pinnawala where you can frolic about with the elephants and perhaps even feed a baby elephant or two. You may also not want to miss the Minneriya elephant gathering when during the dry months of July and August herds of elephants gather at the Minneriya tank in large groups in an attempt to cool off.

Travel tips for Sri Lanka

  • The best time to visit the island is from November to April. The monsoons take place from May – August and December – March and it is best to avoid this rainy season.
  • Sri Lanka is a tropical country with warm weather all year around. Pack light cotton clothes in general and light woollen cloths for the hills. And don’t forget your swimming suit as it is also known for its resplendent beaches!
  • Public transport consists mainly of buses and trains and they are easy to get hold of. Three wheelers are also a convenient means of getting around as well but do be aware as they tend to overcharge! Alternatively, you can hire a car with a driver to get around the country at your own pace as well.
  • When visiting religious places, make sure that your shoulders and knees are well covered. Do not take photographs with your back to the religious statues and respectful behaviour is appreciated at all times.
  • Always carry around a water bottle so as to avoid dehydration. Or opt for a refreshing king coconut every once in a while!
  • Tap water is not safe for consumption. Filtered or boiled water at certain places may not be properly cleaned and therefore, it is safe to always opt for bottled spring water which you can purchase at any supermarket island wide.
  • Be vary of ice cream and street food sold by street vendors. Unsanitary preparation of food may lead to stomach problems.
  • Before heading out, lather on sunscreen generously to avoid sunburn.
  • When exchanging currency, do so only from authorized and trusted dealers. Banks are the most reliable form.