Hidden Gems of Sri Lanka

Highlights: Colombo - Makandura - Dambadeniya - Kurunegala - Sigiriya - Egoda Wewa - Pidurangala - Matale - Knuckles - Dimbulkumbura - Buttala - Yala - Kataragama - Hummanaya - Hiriketiya Other Departure: Manchester - £1815, Birmingham - £1845, Glasgow - £1859, Edinburgh - £1859, Newcastle - £1859 Inclusion:
- 4 x 4 Safari in Yala National park (Galge entrance Block 5)
- Excursion in Egoda wewa Village
- Tuk Tuk Ride In Matale
- Visit Matale Spice Garden
- Picnic Lunch during Knuckles trek
- Visit a tea plantation
- Excursion to Dikkele Forest
- Bicycle ride in Makandura village
- Visit Ridi Viharaya Kurunegala
- Visiting a Buddhist temple in Pidurangala
- Visit a Hindu Kovil in Matale
- Knuckles trek with a local guide or trekker
- Yoga session at Salt House hotel in Hiriketiya Hotels: (or Similar)
Makandura - The Notary's House
Sigiriya - Hotel Kumbukgaha Villa
Matale - Strathisla Tea Estate Bungalow
Dimbulkumbura - Marabedda Gardens Resort
Buttala - Hotel Wild Escape
Hirikketiya - Hotel Salt House Itinerary:
Day 1: Colombo Airport/ Makandura
Arrival at COLOMBO airport and welcome with a garland of flowers by a member of the Viluxur Holidays team and your guide. Transfer to Makandura through beautiful landscapes, lush vegetation, and various fruit and vegetable plantations. Arrival in Makandura and check in to the hotel. Welcome drink (non-alcoholic) and a refreshing towel. Afternoon bicycle ride in the village.
The Notary’s House has a selection of simple bikes and helmets for use free of charge by guests. Pick a bike that suits and set off on a tropical cycling adventure! Guests are most welcome to explore the area alone but they usually send a guide to lead to way.
The forest and village surrounding The Notary’s House offer some charming cycle routes which guests can take at their own pace. Ride past scenic paddy fields with resident buffalo and egrets and surrounded by rural households and their seasonal crops. You will be greeted with the warm smiles of the locals as you ride along and quite possibly have the occasional curious house dog tagging along for a while. Return to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 2: Makandura / Dambadeniya / Makandura
Breakfast at the hotel. After breakfast, you can do a small trek to the Dikkele forest. The dense foliage of the neighboring Dikkale forest reserve, a local biodiversity hotspot with a wide range of flora and fauna, offers some very pleasant trails. The reserve is 500 meters from the hotel but it is possible to extend this route when journeying by cycle to take in more of the local area. This is recommended for all nature lovers. Return to the hotel & spend some leisure time near the beautiful lake in front of the hotel. In the afternoon, Visit Dambadeniya Citadel and former ancient capital (30 minutes’ drive from the Notary’s House.) Explore the ruins of the Dambadeniya citadel which served as Sri Lanka’s 3rd capital after Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa. Much of this hidden gem still lies buried on top of a large rock fortress. A short hike to the summit offers excellent panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Dambadeniya is also home to the Wijesundararamaya, one of the best-preserved tooth relic temples which were once used to house Buddha’s sacred Tooth Relic, which currently resides in Kandy. The Dambadeniya excursion could be combined with a picnic breakfast or lunch on site. (Optional). Return to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 3: Makandura / Kurunegala / Sigiriya
Breakfast at the hotel. Then you will be transferred to Sigiriya. En route, visit Ridi Viharaya Buddhist temple Ridi Viharaya or the Silver Temple was built at the place where Silver ore was found, which was made used to build Ruwanweli Dagoba at Anuradhapura by King Dutugemunu during his rein. Ridi Vihara is an important Raja Maha Vihara Temple belonging to the Cultural Triangle. Historical Data on this Monastery complex is found in some Caves written in Brahmin Inscriptions. They dates back to the 2nd and 3rd Centuries BC. During the time of Arahath Mahinda, many Arahaths are believed to have resided in these caves which number around twenty-five in the surrounding area of Ridi Vihara and Rambadagalla area. The caves had been prepared by cutting into the rock and donated by chieftains of the area to the Sangha. Welcome drink (non-alcoholic) and a refreshing towel. Arrival in Sigiriya and check in to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 4: Sigiriya / EgodaWewa / Pidurangala / Sigiriya
Breakfast at the hotel. Then you will be transferred to Egoda Wewa, a typical village situated near Sigiriya or for a small trek. It's a unique experience in the jungle and the village. A surprising walk in the middle of the jungle on the trails of the village. Then, you will cross a river by a catamaran to join a farmer's house. The next stage of your journey, which will take you through vegetable plots and into a rubber tree forest. An unforgettable experience through the jungle and rice fields. Lunch at the Typical village house. You can help a village lady to prepare your lunch & learn about traditional cooking in Sri Lanka. In the afternoon, Visit Pidurangala temple & the rock. Pidurangala is an enormous rock located a few kilometers north of Sigiriya. The two rocks have an interlinked history: whilst King Kasyapa was building Sigiriya Rock Fortress in the 5th century, he moved monks living around Sigiriya to a new monastery on Pidurangala Rock. An ancient cave temple still houses objects from various vintages that reflect Buddhist, Hindu and western beliefs, and the stupa to the left of the temple entrance is believed to mark the spot where King Kasyapa was cremated. Pidurangala is a more challenging climb than Sigiriya, so it should not be attempted by those with poor physical fitness. There is no clear path to the top: steep, uneven steps give way to an expanse of boulders and crevices that climbers must navigate to reach the summit. From the top, there are glorious vistas of the surrounding landscape and an incredible view of the majestic Sigiriya Rock. Then you will visit Pidurangala temple & there you can meet Buddist monks. You can learn about Buddhist philosophy & a Buddhist monk will tie a thread on your wrist, or he will simply give it to you directly. Monks may chant a set of verses while they hand it to you. A blessing thread, or ( pirit nul ) is a string that has been changed over by the monks or nuns. When the Buddha was alive he mentioned that there were several of his sermons that were so powerful that the mere reciting of them could bring protection to our lives. These are the words and meanings... Sabbe Buddhā balappattā—paccekānañca yaṁ balaṁ
Arahantānaṁ ca tejena—rakkhaṁ bandhāmi sabbaso By the power of all Buddhas,
by the power of all Pacceka Buddhas,
and through the virtues of the Arahants,
I bind protection always. Return to the hotel. Dinner & overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 5: Sigiriya / Matale
Breakfast at the hotel & proceed to Matale. En-route visit a Spice Garden Visit a Spice Garden to see spices growing in their natural habitat. Learn about spices and their use in Sri Lankan cuisine. An agricultural zone in the Central Province, Matale seldom drops off the maps due to its remarkable contribution through flagship crops of the island extending from tea, rubber & vegetables to spices. Spearheading the Rebellion back in 1848, Matale today takes immense pride in its story woven around spices. Stop by the side of a spice garden - into which you will be most welcome - and observe the therapeutic values of spices & processes over a refreshing cup of herbal tea! Or spend some time idling on the hardened streets if you mean a real town adventure filled with voices and colors. Then, with the chef at the spice garden, you will go to the local market by tuk-tuk to buy some vegetables. Cooking demonstration & the lunch at the spice garden & you can note down those Sri Lankan recipes & cooking tips. Proceed to Alwatta, Matale. En route, visit the Hindu Kovil « Sri Muthumariamman » which is a popular Hindu shrine located in the middle of Matale town, Sri Lanka. This Kovil/ Hindu temple is famous among both Hindu and Buddhist people in the area. The Hindu goddess of rain and fertility, Muthumari Amman is venerated here by Hindus while Buddhists venerate this temple as a place dedicated to goddess Pattini, the patron deity of fertility and health. Then you will be transferred to the hotel. Welcome drink (non-alcoholic) and a refreshing towel. Check in to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 6 : Matale / Knuckles / Matale
After the breakfast at the hotel proceed to the Knuckles mountain range to do a half a day trekking
The Knuckles Mountain Range takes its name from a series of recumbent folds and peaks in the west of the massif which resembles the knuckles of clenched fist when viewed from certain locations in the Kandy District. Knuckles Mountain Forest Range consists of a range of vegetation types that have resulted from diverse climatic and topographic conditions. Among these are the humid tropical lowland semi-evergreen forest, tropical sub-montane humid evergreen forest, montane grassland (patana) and pygmy forest. The complexity brought to the area with vegetation types is further increased by the range of modifications made to the landscape by people since the British colonization. Knuckles Mountain Forest Range supports a rich biological diversity with 128 species of birds, 20 species of amphibians, 53 species of reptiles, 15 freshwater species and 31 mammal species. All species are not equally distributed throughout the range. Their distribution depends on multiple factors such as food availability, availability of nesting sites, etc. that vary with climate, elevation and land cover. Picnic Lunch is included. Return to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 7: Matale / Dimbulkumbura
After the breakfast at the hotel, you will be transferred to Dimbulkumbura passing tea plantations in Hanguranketha & Rikillagaskada
Arrival in Dimbulkumbura & Check in to the hotel. Welcome drink (non-alcoholic) and a refreshing towel. This is a very small village with a population of close to 300 & surrounded by lavish greenery, paddy fields, vegetable fields, water streams, spectacle mountains and many more. In the afternoon, while visiting the surrounding, you can plant a tree as a souvenir of your visit to Sri Lanka. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel Day 8: Dimbulkumbura / Buttala
Blessed with a breath-taking view of a Sri Lankan tropical mountain range, this is the perfect spot to have your breakfast. This colonial architecture inspired the resort to offer breathtaking views on places such as Piduruthagala, Maha Kudugala, Namunukula, Yahangala, Knuckles mountain range, Victoria Dam and many more. Then you will be transferred to Buttala. Arrival in Buttala & Check in to the hotel. Welcome drink (non-alcoholic) and a refreshing towel. Wild escape is situated in the deep south of Sri Lanka in Buttala on the Kataragama road, created in 5 acres of land amongst the natural surroundings of typical farmer's daily life. Wild escape borders the Menik river. It has 5 spacious rooms which are very similar to homestays in Sri Lanka. To refresh yourself, you can have a river bath in the famous Menik River. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 9 : Buttala / Yala / Kataragama / Buttala
Your breakfast will be served near the river. During breakfast, if you put your legs in the water, you can have a natural fish therapy or a massage and it will be a very nice experience. Then transferred to Yala for a 4x4 safari. Created in 1899, this 1249 km2 reserve, located in the south-east of the island, is made up of savannahs, rocky plains strewn with spiny trees and swamps. This is one of the best places in the country where you can see elephants and other big animals such as deer, wild buffalo, leopards ... Yala is one of the largest natural parks in Sri Lanka which has few entrances. Normally all tourists use the 1st entrance which is called Palatupana but for you, we use entrance No.5 is known as “Galge entrance” which is less crowded & non-touristic. Then proceed to Kataragama. Kataragama is a place of pilgrimage for a variety of religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam and is located in the south-east corner of Sri Lanka. Therefore it is a multi-religious sacred city. Visit Kataragama Shrine. Kataragama is a holy shrine and a popular pilgrim center for Buddhists and Hindus. In fact, Kataragama is one of the 16 principal places of Buddhist pilgrimage. Tamil Hindus of Sri Lanka and South India refer to the place as Katirkamam and it has a famous Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Katirkaman. Visit Kiri Vehera. The Buddhist Kiri Vehera Dagoba is located close to the Hindu Temple and is built by King Mahasena. Sinhala Buddhists believe that Kataragama was sanctified by the Lord Buddha. The Dagoba is said to be built right where the King listened to the Buddha's discourse.

Return to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel. Day 10: Buttala / Hiriketiya
Breakfast at the hotel & transfer to Hirikketiya. En route, visit Hummanaya Blowhole. Hummanaya Blowhole is the only known blowhole in Sri Lanka and it is considered to be the second-largest blowhole in the world. "Hummanaya" refers to the noise, "hoo", that can be heard a distance away when the blowhole is active. Welcome drink (non-alcoholic) and a refreshing towel. Arrival in Hirikketiya & Check in to the hotel. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 11: Hiriketiya
Breakfast at the hotel. Participate in a Yoga session at the hotel. Spend some leisure time at the beach. Dinner & Overnight stay at the hotel Day 12: Hiriketiya / Airport Colombo
Breakfast at the hotel. According to the departure time, transfer to the airport.                                                                                        End of our services, hoping to see you again soon!

Offer Includes

Flights from London Heathrow with Etihad Airways
Airport taxes
11 nights accommodation as per the itinerary
Traditional lunch in Egoda wewa
Cooking Demonstration & Lunch at Matale Spice Garden
Modern and Air Conditioned Car with an English speaking driver
Return Transfers
Entrance fees for all the sites and excursions as per itinerary

Meal Plans

  • As per Itinerary