21 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

21 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Sri Lanka trip itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Drive
1
Galle
— 3 nights
Drive
2
Udawalawe National Park
— 1 night
Drive
3
Ella
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Polonnaruwa
— 4 nights
Drive
5
Sigiriya
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Kandy
— 5 nights
Fly to Diyawanna Oya, Taxi to Colombo

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Galle

— 3 nights
The southernmost city on the island, Galle combines colonial-era history with a tropical feel and climate.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Galle: Mirissa (Parrot Rock Bridge, Dolphin & Whale Watching, &more), Hikkaduwa Beach (in Hikkaduwa) and Bentota Beach (in Bentota). The adventure continues: steep yourself in history at Galle Fort, take in the spiritual surroundings of Unawatuna Devol Devalaya, don't miss a visit to Japanese Peace Pagoda, and enjoy the sand and surf at Jungle Beach.

For reviews, where to stay, photos, and tourist information, read our Galle travel planner.

Colombo to Galle is an approximately 2.5-hour car ride. You can also take a train; or do a combination of taxi and bus. In April, daily temperatures in Galle can reach 39°C, while at night they dip to 30°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sun) so you can go by car to Udawalawe National Park.

Things to do in Galle

Outdoors · Beaches · Parks · Historic Sites

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.
On the 5th (Mon), explore the wealth of natural beauty at Udawalawe National Park.

To see other places to visit, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Udawalawe National Park road trip tool.

Traveling by car from Galle to Udawalawe National Park takes 3.5 hours. In April, daytime highs in Udawalawe National Park are 38°C, while nighttime lows are 28°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Mon) so you can go by car to Ella.

Things to do in Udawalawe National Park

Wildlife · Parks · Nature
Highlights from your trip

Ella

— 4 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.
Get out of town with these interesting Ella side-trips: Nuwara Eliya (Horton Plains National Park, Gregory Lake, &more). There's lots more to do: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Little Adam's Peak, take in the dramatic natural features at Ella Rock, relax and rejuvenate at Yoga Ella, and admire the sheer force of Ravana Ella Falls.

To see more things to do, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Ella road trip planner.

Traveling by car from Udawalawe National Park to Ella takes 2.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Fri) early enough to drive to Polonnaruwa.

Things to do in Ella

Parks · Nature · Wildlife · Spas

Side Trip

Polonnaruwa

— 4 nights
Lying 216 km (134 mi) from Colombo, Polonnaruwa offers a rich history second in Sri Lanka only to Arunadhapura.
Get out of town with these interesting Polonnaruwa side-trips: Passikudah Beach (in Kalkudah) and Mihintale (in Anuradhapura). The adventure continues: steep yourself in history at Polonnaruwa, admire the striking features of Kumara Pokuna, delve into the distant past at King’s Council Chamber, and appreciate the history behind Gal Vihara.

To find maps, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Polonnaruwa trip planner.

Drive from Ella to Polonnaruwa in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, bus, and train; or take a train. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Tue) early enough to drive to Sigiriya.

Things to do in Polonnaruwa

Historic Sites · Beaches · Parks · Outdoors

Side Trips

Sigiriya

— 3 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.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Sigiriya: Dambulla (Balloon Rides & Golden Temple of Dambulla). Spend the 16th (Fri) exploring nature at Minneriya National Park. It doesn't end there: delve into the distant past at Sigiriya Fortress and make a trip to Pidurangala Rock.

For traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Sigiriya trip website.

Traveling by car from Polonnaruwa to Sigiriya takes 1.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Kandy.

Things to do in Sigiriya

Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Tours

Side Trips

Kandy

— 5 nights
Nestled between mountains in inland Sri Lanka, Kandy proudly bears its World Heritage Site designation while remaining culturally independent and colorfully picturesque.
Get out of town with these interesting Kandy side-trips: Devathura Falls (in Ramboda), Ramboda Waterfall (in Pussellawa) and Bluefield Tea Gardens (in Nuwara Eliya). There's lots more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, explore the activities along Kandy Lake, take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanical Gardens, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage.

To see traveler tips, where to stay, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Kandy trip itinerary maker site.

You can drive from Sigiriya to Kandy in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Wed) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Kandy

Parks · Wildlife · Historic Sites · Nature

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.