Ancient cities of the North
Leaving the bustling capital Colombo behind, we base ourselves for the next three nights in our tranquil resort at Habarana - ideally positioned for exploration of the region's fascinating sites. We discover the medieval capital of Polonnaruwa and at Sigiriya make the giddy climb up Lion Rock - its ruined fortress precariously perched on top, and its famous 'heavenly maidens' painted in a niche in the sheer cliff face. At Dambulla, we enjoy the famous painted caves with their serene Buddhas.
The Hill Country
We make for the mountains and Kandy, where we visit the much venerated Temple of the Tooth and discover the rich flora of the botanical gardens. After a scenic drive through magnificent mountains cloaked in plantations of tea, we stay in the historic St Andrews hotel in Nuwara Eliya. The air here is refreshingly cool and clear - a place of perpetual spring. We plan to stretch our legs on the famous Horton Plains.
Wildlife & Beaches
Our next destination is the Yala National Park where a diverse range of habitats is home to leopard, elephant, wild boar, crocodile and langur to name but a few of the animals that we hope to be lucky enough to spot on our game drives. A scenic coastal journey to the old Dutch port of Galle takes us through a land where small fishing villages dot the shoreline, and stilt-fishermen, broad sandy beaches and outrigger canoes are commonplace. From December to April there's the chance to take a boat trip in search of whales from nearby Mirissa. Our final days are spent relaxing on the beach at Beruwala with the opportunity to return to Colombo for further sightseeing or shopping.
This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website
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