21 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

21 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Sri Lanka itinerary planner

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Route & dates

21 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Start: Colombo
Drive:  2​h 15​min
1
Hikkaduwa
— 3 nights
Fly + taxi:  3​h 45​min
2
Anuradhapura
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
3
Jaffna
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
4
Trincomalee
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
5
Polonnaruwa
— 4 nights
+2
taxi + Fly + taxi:  3​h 15​min
6
Uda Walawe National Park
— 2 nights
taxi + Fly:  2​h
7
Kandy
— 3 nights
Fly:  1​h
End: Colombo

3
nights
Hikkaduwa

Hikkaduwa ©
One of the most scenic beach resorts in Sri Lanka, Hikkaduwa features a number of long white sand beaches with palm trees and gentle waves.
Head to Tsunami Photo Museum and Cara Jewellersfor some retail therapy. Escape the urban bustle at Nature & Wildlife Tours and Dolphin & Whale Watching. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Hikkaduwa: Galle Fort (in Galle) and Scuba & Snorkeling (in Unawatuna). There's more to do: identify plant and animal life at Sea Turtle Farm and examine the collection at Community Tsunami Museum.

To see where to stay, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, read our Hikkaduwa itinerary planner.

Colombo to Hikkaduwa is an approximately 2.5-hour car ride. You can also take a train; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 37°C in June, and nighttime lows around 30°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Thu) early enough to travel to Anuradhapura.

Things to do in Hikkaduwa

Wildlife Tours Outdoors

Side Trips

Galle, Scuba & Snorkeling, Dolphin & Whale Watching, Tsunami Photo Museum
Highlights from your plan
Tsunami Photo Museum ©
Tsunami Photo Museum
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Scuba & Snorkeling

3
nights
Anuradhapura

Anuradhapura ©
Explore the well-preserved ruins of an ancient Sri Lankan civilization and its former capital at Anuradhapura, a World Heritage Site and erstwhile center of Theravada Buddhism set amidst peaceful green parks.
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi and Mihintale will appeal to history buffs. Get a sense of the local culture at Ruwanwelisaya and Isurumuniya Temple. There's much more to do: contemplate the long history of Ritigala Forest Monastery, snap pictures at Gal Palama (Stone Bridge) over Malwathu Oya, pause for some photo ops at Samadhi Statue, and make a trip to Isinbassagala.

To find other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the Anuradhapura trip itinerary maker site .

Getting from Hikkaduwa to Anuradhapura by combination of flight and taxi takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and flight; or drive. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 16th (Sun) so you can go by car to Jaffna.

Things to do in Anuradhapura

Historic Sites Wildlife Parks
Highlights from your plan
Ruwanwelisaya ©
Ruwanwelisaya
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi ©
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi
Ritigala Forest Monastery ©
Ritigala Forest Monastery

2
nights
Jaffna

Jaffna ©
A center of Tamil culture, the city of Jaffna remains in the process of rebuilding after suffering greatly during the civil war.
On the 17th (Mon), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Naga Pooshani Ambal Kovil, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Nagadipa Purana Vihara, then contemplate the long history of Jaffna Fort, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Nallur Kovil. Here are some ideas for day two: enjoy the sand and surf at Casuarina Beach, then kick back and relax at Kovalam Beach, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Dambakola Patuna Sangamitta Temple, and finally delve into the distant past at Kantharodai Viharaya.

To find ratings, photos, and tourist information, use the Jaffna online trip itinerary maker .

You can drive from Anuradhapura to Jaffna in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train. Cap off your sightseeing on the 18th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Trincomalee.

Things to do in Jaffna

Historic Sites Outdoors Parks

Side Trip

Kovalam Beach
Highlights from your plan
Nallur Kovil ©
Nallur Kovil
Naga Pooshani Ambal Kovil ©
Naga Pooshani Ambal Kovil
Nagadipa Purana Vihara ©
Nagadipa Purana Vihara

3
nights
Trincomalee

Trincomalee ©
A center of Tamil culture and language, Trincomalee suffered greatly during the 30-year civil war, but the troubles haven't dimmed the natural and cultural charms of the place.
Visiting Scuba & Snorkeling and Marble Beach will get you outdoors. Let the collections at Sri Lanka Navy Museum and Hoods Tower Museum capture your imagination. Go for a jaunt from Trincomalee to Nilaveli to see Pigeon Island National Park about 56 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: take in the spiritual surroundings of Koneswaram Temple, explore the different monuments and memorials at Trincomalee War Cemetery, and kick back and relax at Nilaveli Beach.

To see ratings, reviews, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Trincomalee trip itinerary planner.

Getting from Jaffna to Trincomalee by car takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of train and taxi; or take a train. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 21st (Fri) so you can go by car to Polonnaruwa.

Things to do in Trincomalee

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Nilaveli
Highlights from your plan
Koneswaram Temple ©
Koneswaram Temple
Nilaveli Beach ©
Nilaveli Beach
Trincomalee War Cemetery ©
Trincomalee War Cemetery

4
nights
Polonnaruwa

Polonnaruwa ©
Lying 216 km (134 mi) from Colombo, Polonnaruwa offers a rich history second in Sri Lanka only to Arunadhapura.
Get a sense of the local culture at Golden Temple of Dambulla and Polonnaruwa Vatadage. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Safaris and Gal Potha. Change things up with these side-trips from Polonnaruwa: Ancient City of Sigiriya (in Sigiriya) and Habarana (Dambulla Cave Temple & Minneriya National Park). Next up on the itinerary: steep yourself in history at Lankathilaka Image House and appreciate the history behind Gal Vihara.

For reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Polonnaruwa trip itinerary builder site .

Drive from Trincomalee to Polonnaruwa in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Tue) early enough to travel to Uda Walawe National Park.

Things to do in Polonnaruwa

Historic Sites Nature Parks

Side Trips

Habarana, Sigiriya, Golden Temple of Dambulla, Minneriya National Park
Highlights from your plan
Sigiriya ©
Sigiriya
Safaris
Golden Temple of Dambulla ©
Golden Temple of Dambulla

2
nights
Uda Walawe National Park

Uda Walawe National Park ©
One of the primary nature reserves in the country, Uda Walawe National Park provides vital habitat for a herd of Sri Lankan elephants.
Kick off your visit on the 26th (Wed): explore the wealth of natural beauty at Udawalawe National Park. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the striking landscape of Udawalawe Nationalpark Elefant Trail.

For other places to visit, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Uda Walawe National Park trip builder website .

Do a combination of taxi and flight from Polonnaruwa to Uda Walawe National Park in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. June in Uda Walawe National Park sees daily highs of 39°C and lows of 30°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Thu) early enough to travel to Kandy.

Things to do in Uda Walawe National Park

Wildlife Nature Parks

Side Trip

Udawalawe Nationalpark Elefant Trail
Highlights from your plan
Udawalawe Nationalpark Elefant Trail ©
Uda Walawe National Park ©
Uda Walawe National Park

3
nights
Kandy

Kandy ©
Nestled between mountains in inland Sri Lanka, Kandy proudly bears its World Heritage Site designation while remaining culturally independent and colorfully picturesque.
Step off the beaten path and head to Elephant Freedom Project and Commonwealth War Cemetery. Get outdoors at Royal Botanical Gardens and Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. There's lots more to do: stroll the grounds of Kandy Garrison Cemetery, see the interesting displays at Kandy Brasswear Village, take in the spiritual surroundings of Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, and stop by Jayamali Batiks Studio.

For reviews, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the Kandy day trip tool .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from Uda Walawe National Park to Kandy takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and train. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Sun) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Kandy

Wildlife Parks Historic Sites

Side Trips

Elephant Freedom Project, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, Royal Botanical Gardens
Highlights from your plan
Kandy Garrison Cemetery ©
Kandy Garrison Cemetery
Elephant Freedom Project ©
Elephant Freedom Project
Kandy War Cemetery ©
Kandy War Cemetery

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