An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas

Colombo, Sri Lanka

Singapore

This adventure is: #adrenaline pumping, #far far away, #scenic

Colombo: An action-packed date with nature in the Land of...

Your Organizer

“hi, I'm nicole! - I love uncovering hidden Travel gems & going the distance to experience them all around South East Asia over Singapore's various public holidays / long weekends! I'm particularly a fan of Animals, Wildlife & Nature - believe in taking the time to research about Ethical Animal Experiences, enjoy the most natural Wildlife Safaris, meaningful experiences, spend less time at touristy / but must see spots + dedicate most time in my itineraries to Nature. I believe in good planning with a dose of spontaneity / flexibility, comfort & value over cheapness, strive to keep prices at market rate / what you might usually pay. I like staying in more quaint / localised accommodations VS commercialised hotels, enjoying the local recommended food of each place I visit, and soaking in some good lively ambience and atmosphere, preferably with chill live music and a drink or two! I'm also really into Photography, picked it up since 10 years + ago, first as a hobby. I've now been working as a Photographer for 6 going 7 years shooting Events for companies. Happy to share everything I know about Photography / help you take some sweet new profile pics if you're coming on a trip with me! ;) got a question about a trip? WhatsApp message me at +65 9184 0209.”

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“The second-hand torn Atlas that I picked up when I was 7 years old. I flipped it every day and wonder what is happening in the world and to the people. I wonder why straight lines can be drawn on the map and then called country.”

32 Adventures organized
1,287 Friends came along
Total ratings:
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  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Highlights

Together, lets experience the wilderness of Sri Lanka! This island is a drop in the Indian Ocean, but a haven for endangered animals. Join me as we visit Sri Lanka's national parks, beaches, as well as the sightseeing while sitting on trains to tea plantations!

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaSunset view of Mirissa beach. Photo by Patty Ho is /CC BY-ND 2.0

Highlights of this trip:
  • Watching endangered 200-ton blue whales at Mirissa Beach (if we have time, we'll check out a secret beach!)
  • Looking at leopards at Sri Lanka's most popular Yala National Park, home to the highest leopard population in the world
  • Snorkeling at one of the world's shallowest reef coastlines at Passikuda
  • Climb up the Sigiriya Rock, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and dubbed the 'Eighth Wonder of the World'
  • Have a unique opportunity to pluck tea leaves at Nuwara Eliya, an important tea producer for Lipton
  • Trekking to a sheer cliff of 1.2km tall called "World's End", the best attraction at Horton's Plain, another UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Roam the Udawalawe National Park, the only place in the world with the highest density of Asian elephants
  • Mingle with the locals on a train ride through the Sri Lankan countryside

Day 1: We'll land in Colombo on our first day in Sri Lanka. We won't stay long here, as we prepare for our trip to Sigiriya Rock.


Day 2: We'll start our sightseeing at the 200m Sigiriya Rock (taller than the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt!), a UNESCO Heritage Site. If you climb to the peak, it boasts a breathtaking 360 degree view of the landscape. On the way up, other sights await, like the gigantic Lion's Paw statue. In my opinion, this is one of the outstanding aspects of this trip as this rock is unique.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaSigiriya Rock stands out over the surrounding area. Photo by Dennis Binzen is / CC BY 2.0

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaSigiriya Rock Fortress. Photo by S.G.Seyone is / CC BY-SA 3.0

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaThe view on the way up the Sigirya Rock. Photo by Mal B is / CC BY-ND 2.0

The Gardens of the Sigiriya are one of the most important aspects of the site and is among the oldest landscaped gardens in the world. I would also be looking out for monkeys as they love to hang around the railings.


On Day 3, we'll be snorkelling in the clear waters of Passikuda Beach, home to one of the longest shallow coastlines in the world. Get within touching distance of the damselfish, cardinalfish and butterflyfish! Snorkelling equipment will be provided. There will be time to swim leisurely as well.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaSnorkeling with the fishes in clear waters. Photo by Angelique800326 is / CC BY-SA 3.0

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaSunset at Passikuda beach. Photo by Michael Shehan Obeysekera is / CC BY 2.0


Tea lovers are in for a treat on Day 4! Sri Lanka are the world's biggest exporter for tea (and mass producer of Lipton tea) thanks to Nuwara Eliya, the most important location for tea production. Every day, 15 kg of tea leaves are plucked by women for 8 hours under the sun. We may even pluck some tea leaves ourselves.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaWorkers accumulating their plucked tea leaves. Photo by dronepicr is /CC BY 2.0


Day 5: We'll travel by car to Horton Plains to visit its best attraction, the cliff called "World's End". The 1.2km tall cliff feels like the edge of the Earth. On a cloudless day, we might be treated to a clear view of the mountains below!

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri Lanka'World's End' cliff at Horton Plains National Park. Photo by Scott Edmunds is / CC BY 2.0


Day 6: On the way to Ella, is the Nine Arches bridge (aka Bridge In The Sky), one of the best examples of colonial-era railway construction in the country. 

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri Lanka
The Nine Arches Bridge, also a train track. Photo by Dennis Binzen is / CC BY 2.0

The two and a half hour train ride amongst Sri Lankans from Nuwara Eliya to Ella brings us through tunnels, tea plantations, forests and villages.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaSri Lankan children in a train carriage. Photo by Garret Clarke is / CC BY-ND 2.0


Day 7 will be spent up close with elephants at Udawalawe National Park! Sri Lanka boasts the highest density of wild Asian elephants worldwide. Unlike a zoo, wildlife at the park are unrestrained by captivity and roam freely.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaA herd of elephants in Udawalawe National Park. Photo by Paul Keller is / CC BY 2.0

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaWater buffalos at Udawalawe National Park. Photo by Ji-Elle is / CC BY-SA 3.0

On Day 8, we'll make our way to Yala National Park, Sri Lanka's second largest and most popular national park. We will look out for leopards as Yala National Park has the highest population density of them in the world. But leopards are hard to spot as they blend seamlessly into the forest.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaLeopard camouflaged among the bushes. Photo by Chris Shervey is / CC BY 2.0


Its time for whale watching on Day 9! We'll be out at the blue-ish green hues of the Mirissa Beach waters to watch orcas and the endangered 100 feet long and 200 ton blue whales. I'm particularly looking forward to this one as its one of the very few places in Asia that we can whale-watch

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaWhale watching out at sea from Mirissa Beach. Photo by Jose Ozorio is / CC BY 2.0 

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaAerial view of Mirissa Beach. Photo by dronepicr is / CC BY 2.0


En route back to Colombo on day 10, we'll be dropping by Hikkaduwa and Galle. Hikkaduwa is blessed with clear waters and sea turtles. If time permits, I hope we visit a sea turtle hatchery.

An action-packed date with nature in the Land of Helas starting at Colombo, Sri LankaLighthouse in Galle built by the British, now a UNESCO Heritage Site. Photo by Patty Ho licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Flickr.

A throwback to its colonial past, the Galle Fort, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was built with European-style architecture. 

Itinerary

Day 1: Colombo airport
City tour of Colombo
Overnight stay Colombo

Day 2: Colombo (leaving for Sigiriya Rock)
Sightseeing at Sigiriya Rock
Arrival at Passikuda beach,
Overnight stay at Passikuda beach

Day 3: Passikuda Beach
Snorkelling and sailing (end around 12pm)
Overnight stay at Passikuda beach

Day 4: Nuwara Eliya
Nuwara Eliya visit tea plantation,
Overnight stay at Nuwara Eliya

Day 5: Nuwara Eliya
Trekking at Horton Plains
Overnight stay at Nuwara Eliya

Day 6: Nuwara Eliya
Train ride to Ella Nature View
Overnight at Ella

Day 7: Ella (leave for Udawalawe national park)
Udawalawe national park for safari
Overnight at Udawalawe national park

Day 8: Udawalawe national park (leave for Yala national park)
Yala national park
Overnight at Yala national park

Day 9: Yala national park (leave for Mirissa Beach)
Whale watching at Mirissa Beach
Overnight at Mirissa Beach

Day 10: Mirissa Beach
Visiting Galle and Hikkaduwa
Colombo airport