Stef Lanka Tours


All about travelling in Sri Lanka

Art and Culture Tour in Sri Lanka

14 Nights/15 Days

The Sri Lankan Cultural tour gives you a deep appreciation of the island’s history. It will help you to gain a better understanding of Sri Lanka’s rich cultural and artistic heritage on a tour designed also to uncover lesser known, but still fascinating remains of Sri Lanka’s past.

Experience Sri Lanka as a local, piecing together the vibrant domestic culture which has mostly deep-rooted Buddhist rituals and art. Holidays in Sri Lanka will reveal the cultural activities and festivities unique to the island. The ancient civilization of Sri Lanka can be witnessed across the Cultural Triangle which encompasses the cities of Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa and Sigiriya. The archeological sites reveal the amazing reality of how technologically advanced Sri Lanka was compared to other nations in the past. The wooden art, sculptures and paintings say a lot about ancient Sri Lankan heritage. Sigiriya is a UNESCO heritage site and is a masterpiece making it a wonder of Asia. For lovers of History, a cultural tour to Sri Lanka will not just give a memorable experience, but also knowledge of the ancient Arts and Crafts of the island nation.

  • Upon arrival transfer to your hotel in Colombo
  • Overnight Colombo
  • Proceed to the Cultural Triangle in the North Central region.
  • Your first stop this morning is the architectural wonder of Yapahuwa. Climb an impressive staircase, decorated by murals and guarded by lions, to what remains of the palace.
  • Then onward to Aukana, where the wonderfully-preserved statue of Buddha stands 42 feet high.
  • Check in to hotel.
  • Overnight at Anuradhapura.
  • Explore Mihintale, the cradle of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.
  • Recommend an early-morning climb up 1,840 steps to the summit of Mihintale rock. The pagodas and monastic cave dwellings are more easily experienced.
  • Visit the ‘Mahakanadarawa’ stone bridge, which dates back to the 7C, hidden in the forest.
  • Later during the day discover the ancient kingdom of Anuradhapura, once the greatest monastic city of the world. It served as Sri Lanka’s capital for around 1,400 years until Polonnaruwa took precedence. Archaeologists in the 18C felt they were discovering a lost city, and you will understand why as you gaze upon the remains of the palaces, statues and pleasure gardens.
  • Return to hotel for overnight at Anuradhapura.
  • Morning visit to Polonnaruwa which became Sri Lanka’s royal medieval capital in 1073 and remained Sri Lanka’s capital until the late 13C. Today, the ancient city’s ruins remain in remarkably good order. The most impressive are the ancient sculptures of Lord Buddha at the Gal Vihara cut into Granite stone. The Archaeological Museum short drive away gives an insight into the kingdom.
  • Visit the Polonnaruwa tank and understand why many Sri Lankans revere Parakramabahu the Great above all other rulers.
  • Check in to hotel in Dambulla.
  • Relax for the rest of the day. Overnight stay in Dambulla.
  • Rise early and climb the magnificent Sigiriya Rock, another of Sri Lanka’s fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
  • No matter how often you climb to the summit of this one-time fortress of the rebel, Sinhalese king, Kashyapa, the pleasure remains. Many scholars believe that Kashyapa sought to rule as a God-king. About two hours can happily be spent walking through water gardens, and then up the steep steps – either hewn out of the rock or on circular iron staircases – past the frescoes.
  • In the afternoon, visit Dambulla Cave Temple and see the largest, best-preserved cave-temple complex in Sri Lanka.
  • Overnight stay in Dambulla.
  • After breakfast, head to Sri Lanka’s hill capital – the small lakeside city of Kandy.
  • On the way, visit the ancient Aluvihara rock temple, located in Matale. Aluvihara is of great significance in the history of Buddhism. It was here that the oral teachings of the Buddha were committed to writing – the Tripitaka – for the first time in 3rd century AD.
  • Visit the Temple of the Tooth where a sacred tooth relic of the Lord Buddha is enshrined since 4th Century A.D. The temple has decorative walls, a golden roof and fine woodwork. Religious services with traditional music and drumming are held daily at dawn, midday and in the evening where guests can participate.
  • Check in to hotel. Overnight in Kandy.
  • Explore around the lake of Kandy independently.
  • A guided tour of the city.
  • In Kandy, Buddhist temples displaying ancient Kandyan art sit side-by-side with buildings bearing British architecture and other British influences such as the delightful Royal Botanical Gardens, with its orchid collection and formally laid-out trees, or the British cemetery.
  • Look in at the Archaeological Museum.
  • Learn of Kandy’s rich ancient arts and crafts including traditional Kandyan dance and drumming and even have a drumming lesson.
  • This morning you hop on aboard a train and head to the one-time British hill station of Nuwara Eliya – a land of lush tea plantations, majestic peaks and attractive tea bungalows.
  • The British built the Railway System in Sri Lanka back in 1864 for coffee and tea transportation between Colombo and Hill Country. Railway connects the biggest cities in Sri Lanka and offers several classes for all kinds of travelers.
  • Enjoy a brisk walk at Lake Gregory.
  • Overnight at Nuwara Eliya.
  • Sir Thomas Lipton launched his tea empire in the Haputale Mountains. To see where it all began, visit Lipton’s Seat, his favourite vantage point to gaze upon his enormous estate.
  • The Nine Arches Bridge is one of the iconic bridges in Sri Lanka and can be found between Ella and Demodara railway stations.
  • Check in to hotel in Ella.
  • Overnight at Ella.
  • Today you travel to the south-east of Sri Lanka, a rural corner of the island famous for its huge game reserves, vast sugar cane and paddy fields, and rich cultural heritage.
  • En route, take a small detour to Buduruvagala to see Sri Lanka’s tallest rock-cut Buddha statue, 51 ft. in height, and other Mahayana Buddhist statues dating back to the 8th-century AD.
  • Check in to hotel.
  • The afternoon is spent at the sacred jungle shrine of Kataragama located nearby. This holy shrine was built by the warrior King Dutugemunu in the 2nd century B.C. to pay homage to God Kataragama. This shrine is worshipped by people of many faiths. Each day, the shrines come alive when poojas are presented to the Gods. The baskets filled with fruit and flowers, the aromas from burning incense and oil lamps, the sounds of dashing coconuts, clanging bells and continuous chanting all combine to provide a mesmerizing experience.
  • Overnight at Tiisamaharama.
  • If conditions permit and you are ready to wake up early morning a morning game drive at Yala National Park can be arrange.
  • Alternatively by late morning, you travel along the south coast to the historic city of Galle. Opt for the new motorway or amble along a beautiful coastline and grab lunch by the beach along the way.
  • Check in to hotel.
  • Overnight in Galle.
  • Enjoy an independent exploration or a guided walk at Galle Fort and learn the history and architectural features.
  • Galle Fort is a magnet for tourists eager to explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Hours can be spent exploring a maze of narrow streets lined with a collection of small art and craft shops, cafes and beautiful boutique hotels.
  • Leisure for the rest of the day.
  • Overnight in Galle.
  • Transferred to beach town of Bentota to wine down the tour with a relaxing time by the ocean.
  • Take the chance to learn about the ancient art of Sri Lankan puppet making and the history that they represent on the way.
  • Check in to hotel.
  • Overnight at Bentota.
  • Enjoy a leisurely beach stay.
  • Overnight at Bentota.
  • After breakfast, leave for Colombo International Airport.