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Sri Lanka Small Group Adventure – for solo travellers
This 11-day Sri Lanka small group adventure is specially designed for solo travellers in their 30’s and 40’s who are looking for a thrilling adventure in Southeast Asia with like-minded people. Experience lagoons, beaches, fantastic hikes, biking, and incredible wildlife.
If you want an adventure holiday with a distinct local flavour, then this is your trip. Your guides know the ins and outs of Sri Lanka so you can experience some of the country’s best kept secrets.
- Visit Yala National Park and scout for elephants and leopards
- Visit a conservation centre for an adorable look at baby turtles
- Enjoy staying in fabulous hotels and resorts
- Bike through the ancient ruins of Polonnaruwa
- Play a game of cricket with the village boys in Dumballa
- Experience an after dark tuk-tuk ride through Kandy
- Explore a tea plantation in the mountain village of Ella
- Discover Sri Lankan home cooking
- Two days on the beach to relax and soak in the culture
- Help a local school with one of their community projects
Your gateway to Sri Lanka is Negombo. Famous for its lagoon and fantastic dining options, you’ll have plenty of time to explore and get to know your fellow group members. There are nearby fishing villages to explore, the Kosgoda Turtle Hatching and Conservation Project, and boat rides with locals. Check out the impressive battlements of Galle Fortress before an evening game drive in Yala National Park. This is a place unlike anything you’ve seen before – boundless, open, and spectacular.
Next you’ll drive to Ella where some of the finest tea in the country is grown. Wander through spice gardens, hike to a waterfall, and check out an astonishing railway viaduct that serves the village. You’ll have a personal tour of the tea plantation and learn about the varieties and growing process. There’s a fast and fun train ride to Kandy and you’ll get to enjoy every minute of the country’s valleys and vistas. Ella and Kandy are great contrasts for each other. Ella, a quiet agriculture community, and Kandy a vibrant town with music, street markets, and an interesting nightlife.
The adventure winds up with a bang, as you visit the Sigiriya Rock Fortress – named as UNESCO’s unofficial 8th wonder of the world. The view here is the best you’ve ever seen. Then there’s a few days at Kalpitaya, a beach resort with plenty of opportunity for dolphin sighting before heading home.
Enquire today to learn more.
Day 1: Cocktails and catch of the day in Negombo
Touchdown at Colombo International Airport and expect to be treated like royalty, you’ll be welcomed in traditional Sri Lankan style with a garland of flowers so you can shimmy over to your English-speaking guide who’ll whisk you straight to Negombo. Just a 30 minutes drive away, the Jetwing Lagoon Resort is situated on the shores of a lagoon that was once a trading port for the Portuguese and the Dutch. Spend your afternoon relaxing at the resort or on the beach opposite, then gather by the Negombo Lagoon to meet your fellow travelers over a welcome cocktail. At dusk the city comes to life with many handicraft stalls, curio shops and gem stores and the famous Lewis Place is lined with many charming restaurants and bars. Enjoy Sri Lankan style fish & chips before returning to the resort to sleep off some of that pesky jet lag.
Day 2: Explore Negombo and become a turtle hero
Enjoy breakfast at the resort before a tour of your shoreside surroundings in Negombo. If we arrive early enough, you’ll be able to observe how the local fishing folk engage in negotiation with wholesalers at the fish market (you’ll be a pro-haggler in no time). After the tour, we’ll travel three and a half hours south to Balapitiya to visit a sea turtle conservation project, but trust us, this drive will be worth it as soon as you learn about the sea turtles in need of rescuing. You may even get an opportunity to help release tiny baby turtles into the sea, a truly memorable experience as you watch them face the open ocean on their own. After wishing them well on their journey into the wild, enjoy dinner on the coast complete with delicious egg hoppers and curries.
Day 3: Galle culture and poolside chilling
After breakfast at the resort, we’re heading to Yala: Sri Lanka’s most famous national park. Along the way we will stop at Galle Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site which is brimming with beautiful architecture and interesting history. We’ll arrive at our hotel in the afternoon and chill by the pool, it’s a hard life. In the evening, you can hit the town with your guide or get some beauty sleep in preparation for the beauty of a sunrise safari the following morning.
Day 4: Yala gonna love this national park
We arrive at Yala National park for sunrise and jump into jeeps for an adventurous journey to the country’s second largest park – known for its elephants, sloth bears, crocodiles and wild boar. It also boasts the highest density of leopards in the world, so if the saying ‘a leopard never changes its spots’ is anything to go by then you’re more than likely to see one! We then set off for Ella, this may sound like a friendly elephant from Yala but it’s actually a charming little town located in the Badulla district. Perched on a mountainside and surrounded by spectacular landscapes, the area is popular with trekkers and hikers due to its cooler climate. Along the way, we stop at the amazing, rock-carved Buddha statue of Buduruwagala that stands at an impressive 51 foot tall. Then check into your hotel and relax before dinner in the village.
Day 5: Fancy a cuppa in the Ella Mountains?
After breakfast and a beautiful cup of tea at the hotel (we are surrounded by tea plantations, after all), we will explore the town of Ella with its spice gardens, waterfalls and awesome railway viaduct. First we will walk to the Demodara Nine Arch Bridge arches and enjoy a stunning walk along the train track – fear not, it’s perfectly safe to do so! Continuing our tour, we will visit a tea plantation and factory to watch the process of turning the raw green leaf into the familiar black product we so know and love. Then end the day in style with dinner at your hotel with your trip family.
Day 6: Trains and Tuk Tuks in Kandy
We wave goodbye to the friendly people of Ella today and travel onwards to Kandy. The train from Ella to Nuwara Eliya spoils you with views upon views of mountainous magic. After a short drive we arrive at the Sacred City of Kandy. As the hill capital and last stronghold of the Sinhala Kings, the city retains an aura of grandeur, and colonial influences still remain (as well as some spectacular traditional dances!) Upon arrival, check into your hotel for some serious relaxation time. In the evening, we will head into the city for the chance to explore the sights of Kandy. Discover its array of vibrant shops and exquisite architecture, before heading back to the hotel in true tuk tuk style.
Day 7: Cricket Contests in Dambulla
After a three hour drive complete with a visit to a spice garden (your curries will never be the same again), we arrive at our stunning boutique hotel in Dambulla. There’s always a cricket match happening somewhere on the island, so after a few hours chilling at the hotel pool (you’re getting good at this by now) get ready for our team versus the local village in the Cultural Triangle in Dambulla. Our team still hasn’t managed to be victorious yet so no pressure but we’re counting on you, best of luck team!
Day 8: Sigiriya Rock Fortress, A Sri Lankan Must See
Here we like to dig a little deeper than just pools and views, so after breakfast you’re off to the local school to learn more about the local education system. We will then travel an hour more to one of Sri Lanka’s most famous attractions – the 5th century Sigiriya Rock Fortress. With its Water Gardens, the Mirror Wall complete with ancient graffiti, and SO much more, just make sure you’ve got your camera is all we’re going to say. After climbing the 1200 steps to the top you’ll work up an appetite, so we get to enjoy a traditional lunch at a typical farmer’s house overlooking the rice paddy fields. After you’ve eaten we proceed to the medieval city of Polonnaruwa, another UNESCO World Heritage Site (we’re getting so cultured by now). Here we will hop on bicycles to explore the city’s ancient wonders.
Day 9: Life’s a beach in Kalpitiya
Today we leave Dambulla and cruise down the highway to Kalpitiya on the east coast of Sri Lanka. We love it here because the hotels are rustic and have rooms right on the beach – it’s the perfect way to relax before returning home. Sun, sea and sand is usually the order of the day at most beaches, yet Kalpitiya likes to throw in some dolphin and whale watching too, just for good measure. Between December and March is the ultimate time to spot them, or if they’re feeling shy then there’s always excellent snorkelling and diving to enjoy from April to October. Or simply relax by the water with a cocktail in hand. No judgements here.
Day 10: A swimmingly good time in Kalpitiya
Today it’s recovery time – the only difficulty you may face is deciding whether to swim in the hotel pool or whether to dive into the turquoise waters of the ocean. Well fear not, the pool is literally on the beach so you can hop from one to the other to your heart’s content. Plus its a good chance to top up your tan one last time, you’ll soon be back in reality so it will be a nice reminder of your Sri Lankan adventure (and will conveniently make all your colleagues that bit more jealous…)
Day 11: So long Sri Lanka
Today it’s time to say goodbye to glorious Sri Lanka and check out of your resort. Make the most of your breakfast whilst admiring the sea views, before catching your return transfer to Colombo airport. Or for anyone with extra holiday time you can head back to Jetwing Lagoon in Negombo (our first hotel) to stay here for a bonus few days if you can’t bear to leave this beautiful country.
Dates & Rates
19 – 29 January 2017 – 1,795 GBP
2 – 12 February 2017 – 1,795 GBP
10 – 20 March 2017 – 1,795 GBP
7 – 17 April 2017 – 1,695 GBP
27 April – 7 May 2017 – 1,695 GBP
3 – 13 August 2017 – 1,645 GBP
24 August – 3 September 2017 – 1,645 GBP
9 – 19 November 2017 – 1,645 GBP
- 11 Breakfasts, 1 Lunch, 8 Dinners
- Boutique Hotel
- PRICES BASED ON TWIN/DOUBLE SHARE
- SINGLE SUPPLEMENT AVAILABLE ON REQUEST
- Air conditioned minibus
Sri Lanka really has it all. Blissful beaches stretching as far as the eye can see, amazing wildlife from elephants to leopards, ancient ruins with stories to tell, and flavoursome cuisine that the welcoming locals can’t wait for you to try. Our tour will take you above and beyond this Sri Lankan paradise, quite literally with a refreshing mountain visit to a tea plantation but also in our off-the-beaten-track attitude that will take you on one authentic ride. If doing your bit for the conservation of CUTE BABY TURTLES doesn’t have you booking immediately, then the tour also needs your help in giving some village locals a run for their money in a hotly contested cricket match!
- Visits to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites – Galle Fort, the Citadel of Polonnaruwa and Kandy
- Release baby turtles at a turtle hatching and conservation project
- Wildlife adventures with leopards and elephants in the Yala National Park
- Stay in the luscious tea estates of Ella and taste world-class Ceylon Tea
- Take one of the world’s most beautiful train rides with the locals from Ella to Kandy
- Climb the 1200 steps to the Sigiriya Rock Fortress
- Walk to the Demodara Nine Arch Bridge in Ella
- Stay in some of Sri Lanka’s best boutique hotels
- Explore Sri Lanka with a local guide
Did you do the backpacking thing when you were younger but now look for something just as fun but with a bit more luxury and style? You’re in good hands. These guys are all about crafting travel experiences that infuse the soul of a backpacker with the style of a jetsetter.
Experts in small group travel they offer smaller-sized trips especially designed for 30-40 somethings. Their travel style is about getting under the skin of a country, hunting down secret locations. Its adventure but with style and comfort!
Sri Lanka small group adventure
- Trip Code: AWA376
- Dates: various
- Price: from 1,645 GBP
- Depart: Negombo, Sri Lanka
- Arrive: Colombo, Sri Lanka
- Length: 11 days
- Adventure: Boutique hotels, tropical beaches, incredible wildlife experiences & a group of like-minded solo travellers to share it with.