17 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

17 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Sri Lanka trip itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Colombo
— 1 night
Drive
2
Nilaveli
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Sigiriya
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Kandy
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Ella
— 2 nights
Drive
6
Udawalawe National Park
— 1 night
Drive
7
Mirissa
— 2 nights
Drive
8
Galle
— 1 night
Fly

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Colombo

— 1 night
The commercial capital of the country, Colombo has added modern touches to its colonial-era core, creating an exciting and eclectic coastal city.
Start off your visit on the 28th (Sat): take in the spiritual surroundings of Shri Ponnambalawaneswaram Kovil and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Gangaramaya (Vihara) Buddhist Temple.

To find photos, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Colombo trip itinerary planner.

Toronto, Canada to Colombo is an approximately 21-hour flight. You'll lose 10.5 hours traveling from Toronto to Colombo due to the time zone difference. Prepare for much warmer weather when traveling from Toronto in December: high temperatures in Colombo hover around 36°C and lows are around 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Sun) early enough to drive to Nilaveli.

Things to do in Colombo

Historic Sites

Nilaveli

— 3 nights
The coastal resort town of Nilaveli draws visitors with its beaches, dive spots, and seaside hotels.
Relax by the water at Nilaveli Beach and Trincomalee Beach. Get in touch with nature at Marble Beach and Shark Diving. Get out of town with these interesting Nilaveli side-trips: Trincomalee (Arisimale Beach, Seruwila Mangala Raja Maha Vihara, &more). And it doesn't end there: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Pigeon Island National Park, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Sri Lakshmi Narayana Perumal Kovil, enjoy the sand and surf at Uppuveli, and brush up on your military savvy at Sri Lanka Navy Museum.

To see more things to do, ratings, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Nilaveli road trip planning website.

You can drive from Colombo to Nilaveli in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or do a combination of train and taxi. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Wed) so you can drive to Sigiriya.

Things to do in Nilaveli

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Beaches

Side Trip

Sigiriya

— 2 nights
The historic rock of the same name dominates the landscape of World Heritage-listed Sigiriya, where the steep and striking lava plug contains the ruins of an ancient empire.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Sigiriya Fortress and Golden Temple of Dambulla. Step out of the city life by going to Safaris and LG Lanka Tours. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Sigiriya: Polonnaruwa (Angammedilla National Park, King’s Council Chamber, &more) and Ritigala Forest Monastery (in Anuradhapura). There's still lots to do: contemplate the long history of kaludiya Pokuna and make a trip to Pidurangala Rock.

To find ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Sigiriya route builder website.

Getting from Nilaveli to Sigiriya by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and train; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Kandy.

Things to do in Sigiriya

Historic Sites · Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife

Side Trips

Kandy

— 2 nights
Nestled between mountains in inland Sri Lanka, Kandy proudly bears its World Heritage Site designation while remaining culturally independent and colorfully picturesque.
Start off your visit on the 4th (Sat): take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanical Gardens, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, stroll the grounds of Kandy War Cemetery, then stroll through Udawattekele Sanctuary, then soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic.

To find reviews, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Kandy trip itinerary maker website.

Traveling by car from Sigiriya to Kandy takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) so you can go by car to Ella.

Things to do in Kandy

Parks · Wildlife · Historic Sites · Adventure

Side Trip

Ella

— 2 nights
The relaxing hilltop village of Ella benefits from a more temperate climate than much of the rest of country thanks to its high elevation.
On the 5th (Sun), tour the pleasant surroundings at Mini Adams Peak, trek along Nature Trail Ella, take in the dramatic scenery at Ravana Ella Falls, take in the dramatic natural features at Ella Rock, then take in the views from Nine Arches Bridge, and finally take in the awesome beauty at Little Adam's Peak. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the fascinating underground world of Ravana's Cave, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, make a trip to Demodara Loop, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Dhowa Rock Temple, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Muthiyangana Raja Maha Viharaya, and finally take in the dramatic scenery at Diyaluma Falls.

To see photos, reviews, ratings, and tourist information, read our Ella day trip planning site.

You can drive from Kandy to Ella in 4 hours. Another option is to take a train. On the 7th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Udawalawe National Park.

Things to do in Ella

Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Trails

Side Trips

Udawalawe National Park

— 1 night
One of the primary nature reserves in the country, Uda Walawe National Park provides vital habitat for a herd of Sri Lankan elephants.
Start off your visit on the 7th (Tue): take an exotic tour of a safari tour.

To see photos, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, use the Udawalawe National Park holiday website.

Drive from Ella to Udawalawe National Park in 2.5 hours. In January in Udawalawe National Park, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 26°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 8th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Mirissa.

Things to do in Udawalawe National Park

Wildlife · Parks · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Mirissa

— 2 nights
The fishing town of Mirissa has developed into a notable tourist destination.
On the 9th (Thu), race across the water with a speed boat tour, kick back and relax at Secret Beach, stop by Dress Palace, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, then see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour, and finally cast your line with a fishing tour. On your second day here, identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas, enjoy the sand and surf at Mirissa Beach, contemplate the long history of Star Fort, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Matara Paravi Duwa Temple, then visit a coastal fixture at Dondra Head Lighthouse, and finally enjoy the sand and surf at Hiriketiya Beach.

To find maps, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Mirissa route builder app.

You can drive from Udawalawe National Park to Mirissa in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and taxi. Expect a daytime high around 37°C in January, and nighttime lows around 27°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Galle.

Things to do in Mirissa

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trips

Galle

— 1 night
The southernmost city on the island, Galle combines colonial-era history with a tropical feel and climate.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Sat): enjoy the sand and surf at Narigama Beach, steep yourself in history at Galle Fort, then see what you can catch with a fishing tour, then enjoy the sand and surf at Unawatuna Beach, and finally enjoy the sand and surf at Mihiripenna Beach.

To find ratings, reviews, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the Galle route builder website.

Traveling by car from Mirissa to Galle takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a train. In January, daily temperatures in Galle can reach 37°C, while at night they dip to 27°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 11th (Sat) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Galle

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trips

Sri Lanka travel guide

4.2
Sacred & Religious Sites · Beaches · Nature & Parks
India's Teardrop
Shaped like a teardrop and located just below the southern tip of India, lush Sri Lanka boasts some of the greatest biodiversity in the world. Unless you time your Sri Lanka holiday for monsoon season, you can expect bright blue skies and plenty of sunshine, perfect for exploring tropical forests, historic temples, colonial forts, and many other buildings dating back to Dutch rule. Popular things to do in Sri Lanka include swimming, sailing, and surfing, though a growing number of visitors come here just to eat their way around the country. Greatly influenced by nearby India, the national cuisine also features many elements of European cooking--a result of the Dutch and Portuguese colonial years. Of course, a trip to Sri Lanka would not be complete without a cup of its world-famous Ceylon tea.