SRI LANKA IN TWO WEEKS

Unreal wildlife, scenic train rides, ancient culture, mountains, tropical beaches and the best tea in the world, Sri Lanka has it all!


If you are traveling to Sri Lanka, be prepared to be blown away by not only the beauty of this country and its stunning landscapes but also the charm and hospitality of the locals.

Whether you are a single traveller, a couple or you are traveling with your family, Sri Lanka is the perfect place to visit if you are looking for an entertaining but relaxing holiday experience.


Between two to three weeks is the ideal time to spend exploring the country, as there are so many beautiful sights to discover.

This 2-week itinerary through Sri Lanka is a day-by-day route that documents our personal experience. Please note that some days contain links to larger blogs about each specific location.


Day 1: COLOMBO

At whatever time you arrive in Colombo we recommend you to take that first day off to relax and get ready for the exciting journey ahead.

Though Colombo might not be the most popular place to spend your days in Sri Lanka, it is indeed a necessary stop before you start to explore the rest of this stunning country.

In our opinion, you don’t need to spend a lot more than two days in the capital as there aren’t a lot of things to do, compared to the rest of the country.


click HERE to see accommodation details


Day 2-3: SIGIRIYA

One of the most popular things to do here is to visit SIGIRIYA'S LION ROCK. You will have two options to experience this UNESCO World Heritage Site: climb the actual Lion Rock, which will cost you $30 USD per person, or climb Pidurangala Rock, which will only cost you a few cents and will offer insane views of Sigiriya Rock. We opted for the second option.


click HERE to see all Uga Escapes accommodation details


Day 4-5: TRINCOMALEE

Trincomalee is a port city on the northeast coast of Sri Lanka. Probably not the most touristy destination, but that’s why we loved it so much!

Even though most of the southern beaches are the popular ones, it is fair to say that Trincomalee’s beaches are way more beautiful and quiet. You would never expect to experience white sand beaches in this part of the country.

For us, this was the holiday within the holiday.

Some of the popular things to do here are: whale watching and snorkelling at Pigeon Island



Day 5-6: KANDY

Kandy is the second biggest city in Sri Lanka. It's set on a plateau surrounded by mountains, which are home to tea plantations and bio diverse rainforest.

The activities we’ve enjoyed the most here were tea plucking with the locals and visiting "The Elephant Freedom Project", a shelter for former captive elephants.

This is one of only places where there is no elephant riding ever, just accompanying on walks. This family run project is far from being a mass tourist attraction and don't like elephant tricks. They aim to give elephants a good and safe home.

You can find them in Kegalle, between Kandy and Colombo and only 2 hours away from the airport.

If you wish to learn more about them CLICK HERE





Other places to visit in Kandy:

  • The Botanical Gardens

  • The Temple of Tooth

  • Kandy Lake

click HERE to see accommodation details


Day 7-8: ELLA

This cute little town has to be one of the most chilled places in the country, offering epic sceneries and stunning hikes, ie: ELLA ROCK and LITTLE ADAM'S PEAK For this reason it is has become one of the major tourist hotspots in Sri Lanka.

One of the most unique attractions is the NINE ARCHES BRIDGE in between Ella station and Demodara station. A MUST SEE!



Day 9-10: YALA AND NATIONAL PARKS

YALA is the home to the second largest National Park in Sri Lanka. It hosts almost 50 species of mammals and it’s a great place for spotting several bird species, as well.

It has the highest leopard population density in the world so the chances of spotting a leopard in Yala are higher than anywhere else. For this reason, Yala National Park is a popular safari destination, but the major drawback is that it often gets crowded in the park.

But if you are not bothered to see these beautiful big cats and you only want to see elephants, UDAWALAWE National Park will be the your place. We were lucky to see more than 20 elephants in the first hour of the safari, crocodiles, birds, water buffalos and more!



Day 11 to 15: SOUTHERN PROVINCE

The best beaches in the country are located in the southern and eastern parts of Sri Lanka – with each beach having something unique to offer to every type of traveller.

This beautiful and sunny southern region is a popular destination amongst both tourists and locals and is visited throughout the year.


click HERE to see accommodation details


MIRISSA

It is for sure a great place to spend at least 2 days enjoying the sun and drinking coconut water under the palm trees. It really does have it all: whale watching, surf waves, and cool cafes and restaurants. Our favourite eatery: SHADY LANE.



WELIGAMA

If you love a good surf sesh, Weligama, translated as sandy village, is a great place to learn how to surf, about a two-kilometre stretch of shallow sandy beach, it’s one of the best places in South Sri Lanka to discover a connection with the ocean and catch your first wave.

Best places to hang out and have a bite: CEYLON SLIDERS and HANGTIME ROOFTOP



UNAWATUNA

This area is home to two of the most beautiful and popular beaches in the country: Unawatuna and Dalawella beaches.

The spots you want to check out:

1. The beach swing near Wijaya beach.

(if you actually ask the locals/Google Maps for Dream Cabana they will point you to the right place)

2. The big rock in the middle of Unawatuna beach

You want to spend in this area at least 3 days to make the most of this experience. It’s only an hour away from Colombo and has easy access to Galle Fort as well.

Best vegetarian and vegan resto: THE HIDEOUT, healthy and yummy Mexican fusion



Day 16: back to COLOMBO


WHEN TO VISIT

Contrary to what most people believe, this country is an all year round destination. There is no such thing as “the perfect time to visit” as each part of the island has its own best time to go:

  • North, places like Trincomalee or above: May to September

  • Center, places like Kandy and Ella: January to April

  • South, mainly Southern Province: December to March


WHERE TO STAY

We had the pleasure of staying in some amazing locations, all different from each other. We highly recommend you to have a taste of as much options as possible:

Colombo – Movenpick Hotel

Sigiriya – Hotel Sigiriya and Ulagalla by Uga Escapes

Trincomalee – Jungle Beach by Uga Escapes

Kandy – Aarunya Resort

Ella – Chill Ville Hotel

Yala – Chena Huts by Uga Escapes

Southern Province – Cantaloupe Hotels


GETTING FROM A TO B

There are many available options when it comes to traveling within the country. This will depend mainly on your budget.

We decided to do only one train from Nuwara Eliya to Ella and the rest by car as we only had two weeks to explore. And even though the island is easy to travel sometimes it can be time consuming to get to places.

The cheapest options to travel are: bus, train, tuk-tuk and motorbike. If your budget is not too tight you could also use taxis all over the country and Uber in Colombo.

If money is not an issue, hiring your own car + driver is a great way to go and it’ll only cost you around $50 USD per day.


ONLINE VISA FOR SRI LANKA

You will need a visa to be allowed into the country. Arranging this document is extremely easy if done online. Just make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months.

We recommend applying with time, at least a week in advance, but usually the applications get approved within 24 hours.

You will receive a 30-day visa that will cost you approximately $35 USD.

Get you online Visa HERE


If you have enjoyed this blog or have any questions, don't be shy, leave us a comment and we'll get back to you as soon as possible! For travel info, questions or collaboration enquiries drop us a line on youmentheseatravel@gmail.com and don't forget to follow us on Instagram @youmeandthesaltysea .