40 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

40 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

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Route & dates

40 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Start: Kolkata (Calcutta)
Fly + Taxi:  7​h
1
Bentota
— 4 nights
Fly + Taxi:  4​h 30​min
2
Trincomalee
— 5 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
3
Jaffna
— 5 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
4
Anuradhapura
— 6 nights
+2
Taxi + Fly + Taxi:  3​h 30​min
5
Udawalawe National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h
6
Tissamaharama
— 4 nights
Taxi + Fly:  1​h
7
Kandy
— 6 nights
Fly + Taxi:  1​h
8
Galle
— 6 nights
Taxi + Fly:  6​h
End: Kolkata (Calcutta)

4
nights
Bentota

Bentota ©
The coastal town of Bentota boasts a number of seaside attractions to draw in guests.
Take a break from the city and head to Safaris and Victor Hasselblad Sea Turtle Research & Conservation Center. Explore hidden gems such as Kande Viharaya Temple and Richmond Castle. Venture out of the city with trips to The Marina (in Kahapola), Scuba & Snorkeling (in Hikkaduwa) and Thudugala Ella waterfall (in Kalutara). And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Bentota Beach, visit a coastal fixture at Barberyn Island Lighthouse, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kowilawatta Temple, and stroll through Ahungalla Sea Turtles Conservation And Research Center.

To find topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the Bentota trip builder.

Kolkata (Calcutta), India to Bentota is an approximately 7-hour combination of flight and taxi. Expect a bit warmer evenings in Bentota when traveling from Kolkata (Calcutta) in February, with lows around 27°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Thu) to allow time to travel to Trincomalee.

Things to do in Bentota

Outdoors Wildlife Parks

Side Trips

Kosgoda, Beruwala, Kalutara, Kande Viharaya Temple, Scuba & Snorkeling
Highlights from your plan
Kande Viharaya Temple ©
Kande Viharaya Temple
Safaris

5
nights
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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Shark Diving and Polonnaruwa Vatadage. Get some historical perspective at King’s Council Chamber and Somawathiya Stupa. Venture out of the city with trips to Polonnaruwa (Dalada Maluwa, Hatadage, &more). Next up on the itinerary: take in the spiritual surroundings of Sri Pathrakali Amman Temple, brush up on your military savvy at Orr's Hill Army Museum, pause for some photo ops at Velgam Vehera, and take in the architecture and atmosphere at Saint Mary's Cathedral.

To see where to stay, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Trincomalee tour itinerary planning site .

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from Bentota to Trincomalee in 4.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a train. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Jaffna.

Things to do in Trincomalee

Historic Sites Outdoors Tours

Side Trip

Polonnaruwa
Highlights from your plan
Shark Diving
King’s Council Chamber ©
King’s Council Chamber
Polonnaruwa Vatadage ©
Polonnaruwa Vatadage

5
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.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Nallur Kovil and Kantharodai Viharaya. Escape the urban bustle at Thalaiyadi Beach and Kovalam Beach. There's still lots to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Naga Pooshani Ambal Kovil, admire the landmark architecture of Nagadeepa Rajamaha Viharaya, pause for some serene contemplation at St. Mary's Cathedral, and get engrossed in the history at Jaffna Archaeological Museum.

For photos, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Jaffna trip planner.

Traveling by car from Trincomalee to Jaffna takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and train; or take a train. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Anuradhapura.

Things to do in Jaffna

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

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

6
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.
Get a sense of the local culture at Isurumuniya Temple and Sigiriya. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi and Balloon Rides. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Anuradhapura: Golden Temple of Dambulla (in Dambulla), Pidurangala Rock (in Sigiriya) and Habarana (Dhilip De Alwis, Safaris, &more). There's much more to do: contemplate the long history of Ritigala Forest Monastery, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Mihintale, admire the landmark architecture of Ruwanwelisaya, and don't miss a visit to Jethawanaramaya Dagoba.

To see maps, topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Anuradhapura road trip planning tool .

You can drive from Jaffna to Anuradhapura in 3.5 hours. Another option is to take a train. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Udawalawe National Park.

Things to do in Anuradhapura

Historic Sites Tours Outdoors

Side Trips

Habarana, Sigiriya, Dambulla
Highlights from your plan
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi ©
Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi
Safaris
Ritigala Forest Monastery ©
Ritigala Forest Monastery

2
nights
Udawalawe National Park

Udawalawe 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.
Start off your visit on the 15th (Sun): get to know the resident critters at Udawalawa Elephant Orphanage and then explore the striking landscape of Udawalawe National Park. Keep things going the next day: see exotic creatures in open habitats at a safari tour and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Elephant Transit Home (ETH).

To see where to stay, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Udawalawe National Park online itinerary builder .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from Anuradhapura to Udawalawe National Park takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train, bus, and taxi. Expect a daytime high around 38°C in March, and nighttime lows around 26°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Mon) so you can drive to Tissamaharama.

Things to do in Udawalawe National Park

Wildlife Parks Nature

Side Trip

Udawalawa Elephant Orphanage
Highlights from your plan
Udawalawe National Park ©
Udawalawe National Park
Safaris
Elephant Transit Home (ETH) ©
Elephant Transit Home (ETH)

4
nights
Tissamaharama

Tissamaharama ©
Tourism in Tissamaharama revolves around the town's vast historic and cultural heritage, with the surroundings of scenic paddy fields adding to the ambiance.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Kataragama Temple and Kiri Vehera. Take a break from the city and head to Yala National Park and Bundala National Park. Step out of Tissamaharama with an excursion to Kahandamodara Beach in Kahandamodara--about 1h 15 min away. There's lots more to do: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, see exotic creatures in open habitats at a safari tour, and explore the activities along Tissa Wewa.

To see topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Tissamaharama day trip planning app .

Traveling by car from Udawalawe National Park to Tissamaharama takes 2 hours. March in Tissamaharama sees daily highs of 38°C and lows of 26°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 20th (Fri) early enough to travel to Kandy.

Things to do in Tissamaharama

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Kataragama, Kahandamodara Beach, Bundala National Park, Yala National Park
Highlights from your plan
Bundala National Park ©
Bundala National Park
Kataragama Temple ©
Kataragama Temple
Yala National Park ©
Yala National Park

6
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.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic and World Buddhist Museum. Get some historical perspective at Kandy Garrison Cemetery and Asgiriya Maha Viharaya. Get out of town with these interesting Kandy side-trips: Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage (in Pinnawala), Aluvihara Rock Cave Temple (in Matale) and Elephant Freedom Project (in Kegalle). There's lots more to do: admire the natural beauty at Royal Botanical Gardens, explore the different monuments and memorials at Kandy War Cemetery, take in the dramatic scenery at Ramboda Waterfall, and get lost in a book at Buddhist Publication Society.

To see reviews, other places to visit, maps, and other tourist information, use the Kandy online attractions planner .

You can do a combination of taxi and flight from Tissamaharama to Kandy in an hour. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and taxi; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Thu) to allow time to travel to Galle.

Things to do in Kandy

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites

Side Trips

Aluvihara Rock Cave Temple, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, Elephant Freedom Project, Royal Botanical Gardens, Ramboda Waterfall
Highlights from your plan
Kandy War Cemetery ©
Kandy War Cemetery
Elephant Freedom Project ©
Elephant Freedom Project
Kandy Garrison Cemetery ©
Kandy Garrison Cemetery

6
nights
Galle

Galle ©
The southernmost city on the island, Galle combines colonial-era history with a tropical feel and climate.
Get outdoors at Dolphin & Whale Watching and Kayaking & Canoeing. Galle Fort and Meera Mosque are good opportunities to explore the local culture. When in Galle, make a side trip to see Fishing Charters & Tours in Mirissa, approximately Mirissa away. There's still lots to do: enjoy the sand and surf at Narigama Beach, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Yatagala Raja Maha Viharaya, tour the pleasant surroundings at Mihiripenna Beach, and take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Rumasalla Mountain.

To find more things to do, photos, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Galle trip planner.

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from Kandy to Galle in an hour. Other options are to do a combination of taxi and flight; or drive. March in Galle sees daily highs of 38°C and lows of 29°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 1st (Wed) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Galle

Outdoors Tours Historic Sites

Side Trips

Mihiripenna Beach, Narigama Beach, Fishing Charters & Tours
Highlights from your plan
Galle Fort ©
Galle Fort
Narigama Beach ©
Narigama Beach
Mihiripenna Beach ©
Mihiripenna Beach

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