Top 10 Things to Do in Sri Lanka

by Emese Graham
sri lanka excursions

Vibrant with rich traditions, a beautiful guardian of untouched landscapes, from coast to coast, Sri Lanka is open for exploring. The country’s unique personality and warm temperatures make it a striking destination for travellers of all kinds. Whether you’re seeking wild adventure, relaxing days at the beach, or eye-opening interactions with diverse cultures, there’s always something for you to do in Sri Lanka. See for yourself!

1. Go on a Safari Tour

things to do in sri lankaSri Lanka is among the top 5 most biodiverse regions on the planet. Visit Yala National Park to see the wild wonders yourself – leopards, elephants, slender red lorises, oh my! Or spread your wings at Kalametiya Bird sanctuary, home to over 150 species of birds.

2. Explore Kandy Kingdom

things to do in sri lanka

The city of Kandy is a colourful hub of Sri Lanka’s diverse culture and beauty. Explore the orchids and palm trees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, the famous 16th-century Buddhist shrine, Temple of the Sacred Tooth, and stroll along the pristine, human-made Kandy Lake.  

3. Visit Elephant Freedom Project in Kegalle

things to do sri lanka

This family-run elephant sanctuary provides a safe haven for Sri Lankan elephants to live freely- without ever subjecting them to harmful tourism practices like elephant rides or show tricks. You can book a quiet visit to walk alongside the majestic creatures or, if they’ve captured your heart, you can plan an extended volunteer trip.

4. Hike to Little Adam’s Peak in Ella

things to do in sri lanka

Follow a local guide to Little Adam’s Peak, where a 45-minute hike brings you to gorgeous panoramic views from the summit. The walk is gentle enough for all ages, with plenty of picturesque scenes along the way, so don’t forget to bring a camera.

5. Pamper Yourself with an Ayurvedic Spa Treatment

things to do in sri lanka

Experience firsthand the ancient healing principles of Ayurveda with a traditional massage and spa treatment which attends to both the body and the mind, leaving you in perfect bliss and relaxation. Ask our Travel Experts to show you which Sri Lankan resorts offer the best spa experiences.

6. Hop on a Whale Watching Cruise

things to do in sri lanka

Sri Lanka’s wildlife is as diverse underwater as it is on land. For the best chances of spotting migrating whales, push off from Mirissa, at the southern coast. Depending on the season, you can witness blue whales, Bryde’s whales, sperm whales, fin whales, and bottlenose dolphins.

7. Take a Sri Lanka Food Tour

things to do in sri lanka

Visit a local market and take a guided tour of Sri Lanka’s culinary landscape, distinguished by full-bodied curries and spices, fresh-caught fish, and plenty of deep-fried delights.

8. Snorkel the Coral Reefs

things to do in sri lanka

Thanks to clear conditions and a striking abundance of coral reefs and underwater wildlife, Sri Lanka is one of the best places in the world to go snorkelling and scuba diving. Top snorkelling destinations include Hikkaduwa Beach, Pigeon Island National Park, Trincomalee, and Galle district.

9. Visit Nandana Tea Factory in Akuressa

things to do in sri lanka

What a shame it would be to visit Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon) without trying its world-renowned Ceylon black tea. You’ll get one of the best experiences at the family-owned Nandana Tea Factory. Walk their gardens, tour the factory, and of course, enjoy a tea tasting session with their friendly staff. That’s the tea!

10. See Lion Rock in Sigiriya

sri lanka attractions

Known by several names including Pidurangala Rock, Lion Rock, and Sigiriya Citadel Rock, this soaring plateau juts out from the surrounding jungle. In its lifetime it has served as a Buddhist monastery, a royal palace, and a fortress, with remnants of its long history still visible today. Seeing this UNESCO-protected wonder for yourself will be a treasured memory of a lifetime.

 

Spice up your Sri Lanka holiday with the perfect itinerary. 


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