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Sigiriya Fortress, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka – The Classic Journey



14 Days

Prices Start from

£4,500pp (ex. flights)

Suitable for

Couples Child Friendly Families

This 14-day introduction to Sri Lanka shines a spotlight on the wild side with wonderful walking trails and safaris. You are joined by outstanding guides throughout who have knowledge on all the local haunts.

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Sigiriya Rock Fortress, Sri Lanka 1

The Cultural Triangle

Visit the ancient heartland of Sri Lanka dating back to the 5th century.

Train into the Hills, Sri Lanka 2

Tea estates

Climb the scenic winding tracks to the heart of the tea country.

Leopard, Yala National Park, Sri Lanka 3

Tracking leopards

Feel the thrill of tracking leopards in the wild with an expert naturalist.

Colonial Pillarbox, Galle, Sri Lanka 4

Galle Fort

Explore the alternative Galle with a local guide.

Why we like it

This classic holiday covers all the highlights of this beautiful island whilst avoiding the crowds. Joined by expert guides in each destination, discover tea plantations, holy temples, national parks and white sand beaches. Stunning nature can be found just half an hour from the cities. Ride by train into the central highlands for sensational scenery. National parks shelter elephants, sloth bears, and leopard. The coastal UNESCO Galle Fort is a must-see.

Explore our suggested itinerary

Sri Lanka on your wishlist? Talk to our experts about tailoring this trip for you.

  • Day 1


  • Day 2

    Colombo - Thirappane - Anuradhapura

  • Day 3- 4


  • Day 5

    Anuradhapura - Knuckles Mountain Range

  • Day 6

    Knuckles Mountain Range

  • Day 7

    Knuckles Mountain Range - Kandy

  • Day 8

    Kandy - Hatton

  • Day 9


  • Day 10

    Hatton - Yala National Park

  • Day 11

    Yala National Park

  • Day 12

    Yala National Park - Galle

  • Day 13


  • Day 14


Day 1


Take a guided walking tour through Colombo and visit the Fort and Pettah to experience the colonial architecture.

Day 2

Colombo - Thirappane - Anuradhapura

Day 3- 4


The Cultural Triangle runs from the hill capital Kandy, the first Sinhalese capital of Anuradhapura to the medieval capital of Polonnaruwa.

Day 5

Anuradhapura - Knuckles Mountain Range

Day 6

Knuckles Mountain Range

The Knuckles range is a stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site and popular with wildlife enthusiasts and hikers.

Day 7

Knuckles Mountain Range - Kandy

The Knuckles range is a stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site and popular with wildlife enthusiasts and hikers.

Day 8

Kandy - Hatton

Day 9


Day 10

Hatton - Yala National Park

Day 11

Yala National Park

Avoid the crowds at Yala and still get a unique eco-friendly wildlife experience.

Day 12

Yala National Park - Galle

Avoid the crowds at Yala and still get a unique eco-friendly wildlife experience.

Day 13


Colonial Pillarbox, Galle, Sri Lanka

Galle is a microcosm of Sri Lankan society, resonating with magnificent sights and sounds.

Day 14


Colonial Pillarbox, Galle, Sri Lanka

Galle is a microcosm of Sri Lankan society, resonating with magnificent sights and sounds.

Our travel experts can tailor this itinerary to suit you.

More details

Konda Keum Sweet, Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka

Colombo Walking Tour

Uncover historical sites and discover new restaurants during your stay in this eclectic city with a local guide by your side. Gain insider knowledge on the best places, including the best kottu. Visit Galle Face Green at sunset and watch a local cricket game.

Lion Carving, Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

The Alternative Cultural Triangle

Explore off the beaten track with our favourite archaeologist, Nerina, who will ensure you avoid the crowds by visiting some little-known sites on the Cultural Triangle.

Madulkelle Lodge, Madulkelle, Tea Country, Knuckles Range, Sri Lanka
Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge, Madulkelle, Sri Lanka

Knuckles Mountain Range

The Knuckles mountain range, 1000 metres above sea level, offers the most fabulous opportunity for hikers. The mini Worlds End trek is easily completed in only two hours from Madulkelle Eco Lodge. Passing through dense forest, crystal clear streams and gorgeous waterfalls.

Blue Train, Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka

Train Travel

Grab a good book, perhaps a cushion, and settle in for a long but extremely picturesque journey on one of the most scenic train journeys in the world. Few locations in Sri Lanka can match the panoramic splendour of the island’s western hill country. An opportunity for some incredible photography.

Wild Coast Tented Lodge, Yala National Park, Sri Lanka
Wild Coast Tented Lodge, Yala National Park, Sri Lanka

Wild Coast - Yala

Safari drives by day, sea-turtles coming ashore to lay eggs by night, with the fleeting chance of an elephant coming down to play in the surf are some of the highlights of visiting Yala National Park.

Monks, Galle, Sri Lanka
Galle, Sri Lanka

Yatagala Temple

Take a 20-minute tuk-tuk ride outside of Galle to visit the Yatagala Temple – a mystical site explored barefooted. Your Buddhist guide will assist you with a puja ritual and the monks will offer a blessing. A wonderful way to end your time on this fabulous island nation.

Tea with Dushyantha De Silva, Kotugoda, Sri Lanka
Kotugoda, Sri Lanka

Time for Tea

Unravel the mysteries and discover the secrets that go into making that perfect cup of Ceylon tea. Find out how the tea leaves plucked by the female estate workers are sorted and processed into making Sri Lanka’s favourite beverage.


Below you can see some of the wonderful places we have recommended for this journey.

Kulu Safari Yala £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • Tented Camps

Kulu Safaris offer comfortable accommodation with a minimal ecological footprint while experiencing a definitive wildlife experience.

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Maniumpathy £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • City

Maniumpathy is located on the edge of Colombo’s most affluent neighbourhood, elegantly restored from a heritage home dating back to 1906. Named after family matriarchs, each of the eight rooms tell its own story through one-of-a-kind artefacts, sepia family photographs and aged Ceylonese prints. Four-poster beds, slipper bathtubs and strong showers all proffer 20th-century luxuries though the character of this grand abode which remains pleasingly unchanged.

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Vil Uyana £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • Wilderness

Surrounded by paddy fields and forest, Vil Uyana has 25 individual villas on stilts. Connected by wooden walkways and decked with wooden floors, each villa has a pitched rattan and bamboo ceiling and a sloping thatch roof made of coconut palms. In-villa dining is available here, while a small spa offers a range of treatments.

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Ceylon Tea Trails £££££

  • Sri Lanka

Ceylon Tea Trails located in the Central Highlands of Sri Lanka’s tea estates comprises of five restored colonial-era tea planter residences. The period furnishings, private butler service and gourmet cuisine create an ambience that has made Tea Trails the gold standard for luxury bungalows in Sri Lanka. Ceylon Tea Trails is surrounded by some of the most breathtaking views you will find in Sri Lanka. Each of the bungalows can be linked by a short walk or drive between locations around the Castlereagh Reservoir or simply choose to stay in one bungalow and visit some of the others for afternoon tea before returning to your base.

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Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • Wilderness

Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge is a fabulous property standing proud on a hillside, surrounded by a lush tea plantation with views of the Knuckles Mountain Range. Set in 18 unique tented lodges and one honeymoon suite, Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge is ‘glamping’ at its best. With top-class service, great food, a pool with a view and an excellent range of activities for all ages, this is a hidden gem close to the city of Kandy.

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Wild Coast Tented Lodge £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • Tented Camps

Resplendent Ceylon’s Wild Coast Tented Lodge (sister of Tea Trails and Cape Weligama hotels) offers a spectacular tented camp close to Yala National Park. A Relais & Chateaux property, this is a five-star resort offering state of the art amenities and unique accommodation. The incredible location, nestled in between the jungle and the Indian Ocean, combined with exceptional wildlife experiences makes this an incredibly special place to stay.

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25 Rampart Street £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • Boutique

Taru Villas 25 Rampart Street is a beautiful four-bedroom boutique hotel within the storied ramparts of Galle Fort. The villa has been restored into an intimate and luxurious place to stay providing an elegant combination of antique charm and modern amenities. Taru Villas 25 Rampart Street is also one of the few properties within the entirety of the Galle Fort that provides the luxury of a private swimming pool.

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It was all very last minute from us so Kate did a great job in responding to a change in dates and negotiating a good deal.

Sri Lanka

Kate Hitchen's help in organising this trip was excellent. She was very knowledgable and tailor-made our trip to suit our three teenage children.

Sri Lanka

We had the most amazing holiday. Thank you to all at Steppes and a huge thank you for our surprise meal at Ministry of Crab. We are so grateful.

Sri Lanka

A note on price

Prices will vary depending on the time of year you are travelling. Prices do not include international flights. Please ask one of our Travel Experts for an accurate quote. Flights purchased through Steppes Travel departing from the UK are ATOL protected.

This Itinerary
From £4,500 Per person

When to travel

Sri Lanka in January

Sri Lanka benefits from generally good weather all year round and experiences a tropical climate with the best and most popular to visit being during our winter months, from January to April.

Sri Lanka in February

Visit the Southern and Western coast of Sri Lanka to experience the hot and humid climate in coastal areas or visit the mountainous regions for cooler temperatures with less humidity.

Sri Lanka in March

In Northern and Central Sri Lanka, temperatures will start to rise, and these regions will become more humid with March being generally a dry month for Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka in April

Overall, April is a very good time to visit Sri Lanka, with most of the island experiencing high temperatures and lots of sunshine, all before the first monsoon rains of the year begin in the South.

Sri Lanka in May

From May to August, the country experiences the first of its two annual monsoon seasons in Southwest Sri Lanka. Therefore, during these months it is best to visit Northeast Sri Lanka including Batticaloa and Passekudah.

Sri Lanka in June

Rainfall with continue in the South during the monsoon season whereas in Northern Sri Lanka, June is one of the best times to visit this area with a warm climate and high temperatures throughout.

Sri Lanka in July

In Northern Sri Lanka, the months of June and July are particularly good times to travel to the area, with minimal rainfall, particularly high temperatures and long days of sunshine.

Sri Lanka in August

Throughout the country, you can expect excellent climate conditions. August is ideal month for those wanting to experience both the Northeast and Southwest regions of the island, typically quite unusual due to Sri Lanka’s monsoon seasons.

Sri Lanka in September

September will start to see the end of the monsoon season in the Southwest and whilst rainfall and thunderstorms are less frequent, are still likely across the region.

Sri Lanka in October

Prior to the monsoon season, rainfall is likely throughout the country and can sometimes be unpredictable, meaning disruptions in travel are likely.

Sri Lanka in November

From November to February, Northeast Sri Lanka will experience one of two annual monsoon seasons. Whilst most days will experience rainfall, it is a great time to travel to experience the lush, green countryside.

Sri Lanka in December

Due to the monsoon in the Northeast, it is best to visit the southwest coast of Sri Lanka prior to the second monsoon reaching this area in May. Experience high levels of sunshine, perfect for Sri Lanka’s beaches.

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise set us apart. So too our curiosity. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you, all the while ensuring we travel and operate sustainably.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary once again?

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