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Camellia Hills, Hatton, Sri Lanka

The Best of Sri Lanka and The Maldives

  • TAILOR-MADE HOLIDAY IDEA

Duration

14 Days

Prices Start from

$5,969 ex. flights

A holiday to Sri Lanka and the Maldives is a great combination and offers the perfect solution for anyone torn between an indulgent relaxing holiday and the desire to explore. Both destinations suit families and couples alike.

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Steps at Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka 1

Cycling the Sites

Cycle through the ancient city of Polonnaruwa in the Cultural Triangle.

Tea Pluckers, Galle, Sri Lanka 2

Ellerton Tea Experience

Take a walking tour through Ellerton Tea Estate to learn about tea production.

Amangalla, Galle, Sri Lanka 3

Historic Galle Fort

Stay at one of Galle Fort’s stylish boutique hotels amidst the cafes and shops.

Aerial View, Baros, Maldives 4

Maldivian Beaches

Spend a week on an easily accessible island, such as Baros, home to colourful reefs and white sand beaches.

Why we like it

The promise of adventure and mystique in Sri Lanka and the serenity and calm of the Maldives is a winning combination. Also, consider visiting these two countries all year round, and benefit from significantly lower rates for the Maldives during the summer months – a time when manta rays and whale sharks congregate, particularly the western side of the Indian Ocean archipelago.

Don't forget, we will customise this journey to suit you.

Explore our suggested itinerary

  • Day 1
    Colombo - Horathapola
  • Day 2
    Horathapola - Sigiriya
  • Day 3
    Sigiriya
  • Day 4
    Sigiriya - Kandy
  • Day 5
    Kandy
  • Day 6
    Kandy - Koggala - Galle
  • Day 7
    Colombo - Male
  • Day 8 - 13
    Male - Baros
  • Day 14
    Baros
Buddha, Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka
Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka
Base of Sigiriya, Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka

Stumbling Over Ruins in the Cultural Triangle

The historical Buddhist UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Sigiriya and Polonnaruwa in the Cultural Triangle offers ancient stupas and stone carvings. Often busy, the best time to view the popular sites is shortly after sunrise in the morning, avoid any crowds and be among the first few to visit that day. An entire morning is required to explore Polonnaruwa, the ancient second capital of Sri Lanka.

There is no better way to explore Polonnaruwa than pedalling the less trodden back roads. We organise a local cycling guide to accompany you – who is a villager and shares insider knowledge of the area. Starting off from Bendiwewa, the trail is 13 kilometres. Pass by a local house for kurumba made from coconut. Pass beautiful rural countryside, passing lakes and lush forests

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Sri Lanka, Galle, Fort Bazaar Courtyard
Fort Bazaar, Galle, Sri Lanka

Historic Dutch Heritage of Galle Fort

Discover the cultural and vibrant town of Galle, with its chic boho accommodation and arty eclectic shops and restaurants. The real draw of this UNESCO World Heritage site is the beautiful colonial houses, so many now lovingly renovated and opened as boutique hotels. Originally built by the Portuguese, the Dutch renovated all the house in between 1640-42 using traditional local building methods.

Occupying many of these buildings are classy retreats – restaurants and hotels offering the perfect setting for a great meal in colonial dining rooms. Original souvenirs are two a penny, ranging from a super stylish reproduction poster, from Stick No Bills, top quality teas from Withered Leaves, and local linen and rugs from Barefoot. Galle is also home to the very popular annual Literary Festival, every January – worth a look.

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Seaplane, Maldives
Maldives

How To Reach the Maldives

A short flight from Colombo takes you to Male, the capital of the Maldives. The airport is home to a fleet of seaplanes and sleek speedboats, ready to whisk guests to their respective tropical island paradises. Here, at your chosen island resort there is nothing more to focus on than the snorkelling, fresh seafood BBQ’s and choosing from the spa menu – total bliss.

Snorkelling, Maldives
Maldives

Set Sail from Baros

Set out early for a full-day of dolphin or whale shark watching, take off on a fishing expedition, or bask in the Baros sunset on a romantic cruise. The Maldivan dhoni, Nooma, gets you out on the water in the traditional way. Or the luxury motor yacht, Serenity, is ideal for a daylong adventure. Reef snorkelling adventures, sunset sailing or romantic dinner cruises for two, this is the perfect vessel for an authentic local experience. Featuring a sundeck, a private saloon lounge and an air-conditioned double bedroom – everything at your fingertips for a jaunt across the waves.

Manta Ray, Maldives
Manta Ray

Whale Sharks and Manta Rays

Whale sharks are year-round residents, tending to favour the western side of the Indian Ocean archipelago from May to December, then heading to the east until April. The South Ari Atoll is a Marine Protected Area. The Maldives Whale Shark Research Programme is a charity that carries out whale shark research and spearheads conservation initiatives in the Maldives. Snorkelling with Whale sharks is an unforgettable experience. There are a number of hotels that work alongside these respected charities and offer hands-on experience during your stay. We love the work that takes place at both Vakkaru Maldives, and Six Senses Laamu.

Accommodation

Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Six Senses Laamu £££££

  • Maldives
  • Beach and Island Escapes

Six Senses Laamu is stylish, yet an understated collection of over-water and land villas constructed from sustainable materials around the palm-fringed beach. It is the only resort within the atoll, therefore allowing peace and seclusion with access to some of the best snorkelling and diving in the Maldives. With a selection of six bars and restaurants, Laamu serves dishes prepared by experienced chefs with some ingredients grown on the islands own garden.

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Baros £££££

  • Maldives
  • Beach and Island Escapes

Baros Maldives is an exotic Maldives luxury resort on a coral-fringed bijou island in the heart of the crystal clear waters of the Maldives. Spacious retreats amidst lush jungle surroundings, a wide array of innovative cuisine and a host of modern amenities and facilities are offered at this Maldives resort to ensure guests have a relaxed and pleasurable holiday.

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Vakkaru £££££

  • Maldives
  • Beach and Island Escapes

Vakkaru Maldives is a brand new, lush, green tropical island resort offering a fresh holistic approach to unassuming luxury with superb eco-credentials. Famous for its manta rays, the diving here is exceptional, and the beach and water villas offer incredible space and ocean views.

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Fort Bazaar £££££

  • Sri Lanka
  • Boutique

The Fort Bazaar is a stunning boutique spa hotel in the heart of colonial Galle, with original coral walls and an atmospheric central thoroughfare. This handsome merchant’s home-turned-boutique hotel with 18 stylish guestrooms and fresh, contemporary interiors is located on Church Street within Galle Fort. The Fort Bazaar Galle offers peace and quiet, high-end service and gourmet modern dining.

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Amangalla £££££

  • Sri Lanka

Amangalla, a favourite with Steppes Travel, is the perfect home from which to explore the fort and town of Galle. It is within the walls of the fort and some of the buildings have an interesting history. Having once been used as headquarters for the Dutch commander and his officers and later as a billet for British soldiers, some date back 400 years.

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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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Let’s chat

Speak to our experts

Our team is waiting to help you tailor a trip that will leave you with stories for a lifetime. Call us on

01285 601 784

Send us an enquiry

Or send us a quick email below and start your next journey.

Call us

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

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
Price
From $5,969 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 sets us apart. So too our curiosity. A curiosity of the world and of you, and your passions. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary?


Why Steppes

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