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Take in the urban buzz of Colombo, Sri Lanka’s capital city. From the mass of historic buildings, which reflect the country’s rich colonial past to the thriving atmosphere of Pettah, with its open-air bazaars and markets. Absorb the vibrant atmosphere of this eclectic city, where sacred temples and churches exist alongside glitzy shopping malls. Walk along tree-lined Cinnamon Gardens or head to the energetic and modern Galle Road, which provides a fantastic contrast to the rural countryside that you’ll see elsewhere in Sri Lanka.
No cultural visit would be complete without a visit to the ‘Cultural Triangle’, where you can catch a glimpse of some of Sri Lanka’s beautiful temples and sacred sites. The lush core of the island is home to 2000-year-old ancient cities, that still today remain a devout Buddhist place of worship, and an abundance of UNESCO declared world heritage sites. See the rock frescoes of Sigiriya, the fascinating rock caves of Dambulla and Ritigale, the birthplace of Buddhism.
North of Colombo and only 20 minutes from the airport, Negombo has a resort-like feel. This humble beach town provides a wonderful contrast to the congestion of the capital, providing many points of interest that include canals and rich colonial history. Colourful fishing boats cluster in the harbour, vendor stalls line the narrow streets and churches adorn themselves with brightly coloured flags, bunting and ribbons to celebrate the frequent festivals.
Sri Lanka’s second largest city, Kandy is nestled beside a lake, high in the verdant hills at the centre of the island. Home to the Buddhist Temple of the Tooth, which is the country’s most holy place of worship. The surrounding areas include many shrines, spice gardens, elephant sanctuaries and the opportunity to buy local handicrafts. To the north of Kandy, you’ll find the cultural triangle, which incorporates the ancient cities of Sigiriya, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa. Trace the country’s historic past and Buddhist heritage.
Located at the centre of Sri Lanka’s famous tea growing region, where vast tea estates cling precariously to the side of steep mountain slopes. Nuwara Eliya has a strong British influence, where red telephone boxes and English-inspired architecture provide a throwback to colonial times. The cool climate and dramatic landscape makes this a popular retreat from the tropical beaches of the southwest and hustle and bustle of Colombo. Take an early morning stroll in Horton Plains National Park, which is home to many exotic animals and the scenic Baker Falls.
Hire an Economy car on your holiday for an unforgettable road trip.Choose car
Upgrade to an Intermediate car on your fly-drive holiday.Choose car
Hire a people carrier, great for groups with lots of luggage.Choose car