1. Watching Pinnawala’s baby elephants take a river bath
  2. Taking an elephant ride through the jungle
  3. ‘Glamping’ beside the Kelani River in Kitulgala
  4. Watching for endangered marine turtles in Kosgoda
  5. Exploring Galle’s 17th-century Dutch fort

Day 1: Arrive in Negombo

Be transferred to the seaside town of Negombo after landing at Bandaranaike International Airport, where the rest of the day is spent at leisure. Overnight at Jetwing Beach.

Day 2: Negombo

Spend a day at leisure in Negombo acclimatising to your new Sri Lankan surroundings, perhaps by relaxing on the beach or taking a ride on a local fisherman’s catamaran. Overnight at Jetwing Beach.

Day 3: Negombo to Dambulla

Begin your exploration of Sri Lanka’s fascinating interior with a visit to Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, home to around 90 orphaned pachyderms. Later, proceed to Dambulla. Overnight at The Paradise.

Day 4: Dambulla

The order of today and tomorrow’s activities is down to you. Perhaps start with an elephant safari through the nearby jungle or travel on a jeep safari through Minneriya National Park. Overnight at The Paradise.

Day 5: Dambulla

If yesterday’s activities weren’t split over two days then spend today at leisure, enjoying your accommodation’s wonderful pool and gardens. Just watch out for the monkeys, mongooses and rock squirrels! Overnight at The Paradise.

Day 6: Dambulla to Kandy

Transfer south to Kandy, Sri Lanka’s second city, where you’ll visit the famous Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic. After later checking into your hotel, the rest of the day is spent at leisure. Overnight at Victoria Country Resort.

Day 7: Kandy

Spend a day at leisure at your 500-acre resort. Located a few kilometres east of the city, there’s a pool, a tennis court, a golf course and a saddle club with riding lessons for all ages to enjoy. Overnight at Victoria Country Resort.

Day 8: Kandy to Kitulgala

Travel south-west via the Central Highlands’ western foothills to Kitulgala, where this afternoon you can try canoeing or some relatively gentle white-water rafting on the thrilling Kelani River. Overnight at Borderlands.

Day 9: Kitulgala to Beruwala

Journey further south-west to Beruwala ahead of a five-night stay at one of the coastal town’s finest resorts, located right on Moragalla beach. On arrival the rest of the day is spent at leisure. Overnight at Eden Resort and Spa.

Day 10: Beruwala

There’s plenty to keep the kids entertained on your first full day at leisure in Beruwala. The calm waters of the nearby lagoon at Bentota, for example, are perfect for boating and other family-friendly watersports. Overnight at Eden Resort and Spa. Image: Hafiz Issadeen/Flickr CC BY 2.0

Day 11: Beruwala

Both kids and grownups will no doubt love a visit to the Kosgoda Sea Turtle Conservation Project a few kilometres down the coast, where it’s possible to see five of the world’s seven endangered marine turtle species. Overnight at Eden Resort and Spa. Image: Amila Tennakoon/Flickr CC BY 2.0

Day 12: Beruwala

Take a day trip to Galle, a historic trade city on the south coast featuring magnificent 17th-century ramparts. The 36-hectare Fort area, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is famed for its charmingly bohemian atmosphere. Overnight at Eden Resort and Spa.

Day 13: Beruwala

There’s nowhere better to spend your last full day in Sri Lanka than the beach, and few in Sri Lanka are as beautiful as Moragalla in Beruwala, particularly when the sun starts its descent into the Laccadive Sea. Overnight at Eden Resort and Spa. Image: Aidan Jones/Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0

Day 14: Beruwala

Transfer to Bandaranaike International Airport ahead of your return flight home.

Activities to consider

  • Learning how paper is made from elephant dung at the Eliphus Maximus project
  • A jeep safari through Minneriya National Park
  • Indulging in a round of golf near Kandy
  • Horse riding lessons near Kandy
  • Family-friendly watersports in Bentota

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