Trip Overview

Experience the cultural kaleidoscope of Sri Lanka with AdventureWomen on a journey that calls each of your senses. Visit UNESCO World Heritage sites, experience wildlife, and learn firsthand about tea, cinnamon, and the art of batik that make Sri Lanka so exotic. Bike, hike, train, and walk through this memorable adventure’s views, sounds, and tastes.

Meet your guide and the women who will be joining you for this unforgettable adventure, get to know one another and discuss the exciting days ahead. You are also accompanied by an AdventureWomen Ambassador, committed to helping make your experience a fun and personally rewarding adventure and cheering you on as you reach beyond your comfort zone to take on new challenges in your own unique way.

Habarana, Polonnaruwa, and Habarana

Start by hopping on bicycles to pedal through archaeological monuments in the medieval capital of Polonnaruwa, the second kingdom of Sri Lanka and now a UNESCO World Heritage site. Balance this ride with a game drive by a local naturalist to one of the area’s national parks to view wildlife.

Take in an amazing 360-degree view after climbing 650 feet of the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, an enormous boulder that towers over the surrounding jungle. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the rock fortress was built in the fifth century and served as a royal citadel for many years.

Kandy, Bandarawela, and Galle

On your way to the Last Kingdom of Sri Lanka, stop to visit Dambulla rock caves and explore its renowned wall art, which dates back to the first century BC. Then a local workshop will allow you to try your hand at the beautiful batik art. Continue your immersion into this colorful culture by learning about traditional Sri Lankan costumes and heirloom jewelry. Behold the intricately carved, precious stones that are embedded in the design, and see how the Sri Lankan saree is distinctively different from its Indian counterpart. Then meet an expert gemologist who will show you how to identify the different gemstones before you can try gem cutting.

Set out on an early morning hike to the Hanthana Mountain range today. Offering picturesque landscapes, this four-hour hike will immerse you in nature and the beautiful landscapes of Sri Lanka.

Drive to the Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya where you will be met by an experienced botanist who has worked at the gardens for over 30 years. Listen as he shares stories of the garden’s history and the precious live collections that have been gathered over centuries.

Meet a Sri Lankan tea plucker at a working tea plantation, where you will spend a day getting up close and personal with this local woman. She will share her story of how she learned the practice of tea harvesting and give you behind-the-scenes access to life on the tea plantation. Later, put your skills to the test as you participate in an exciting tea-plucking competition! n addition to its famous tea plantations, Sri Lanka is also well known for its cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon is grown from a plant that is indigenous to Sri Lanka and is often referred to as the “real cinnamon..”

At your special farewell dinner, toast to new friendships and to the sensory journey that brought you deep into the heart of this mesmerizing, extraordinary land of Sri Lanka.

Main Attractions

  • Climb the rock walls of a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Sigiriya rock fortress, and bike and hike through beautiful landscapes
  • Meet and learn from powerful local women who have helped create the post-colonial Sri Lanka of today
  • Try your hand at the art of batik, gem cutting, and mask painting
  • Come up close, during exciting game drives, to the unique wildlife and diverse ecosystems of this island nation
  • Indulge in local teas and cinnamon-infused delicacies, and learn to make Sri Lankan specialty dishes

What You'll See and Do

  • Bicycling
  • Cooking Class
  • Cultural Exploration
  • Hiking
  • Historical Sites
  • Local Delicacies
  • Sightseeing
  • Wildlife Viewing

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive Colombo

Arrive at the Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) in Colombo, Sri Lanka before 2:00PM.

You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. There will be one group transfer included (time TBD). Transfers are available for an extra cost to accommodate other flight arrival times.

Check into your room and relax before dinner.

Enjoy a lively welcome dinner with the group as you get to know your fellow travelers this evening. Share stories and learn about why each woman is excited to explore Sri Lanka!

Dinner

Overnight: Galle Face Hotel

Day 2

Colombo to Habarana

After breakfast at the hotel, you will set off on a 4.5 hour drive to explore the region known as the Cultural Triangle of Sri Lanka. Enjoy lunch and stretch your legs along the way.

What better way to wake up your legs after a long drive than a little rock climbing? The Sigiriya Rock Fortress is an enormous boulder that towers over the surrounding jungle. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the rock fortress was built in the fifth century and served as a royal citadel for many years. Be sure to take in the mirror wall, Sigiri graffiti, and Sigiriya frescos that adorn the walls as you climb. The amazing 360-degree view will be the best reward after you complete the 650-foot climb to the summit!

After visiting Sigiriya, make your way to the hotel that will be your home for the next three nights.

For dinner tonight you will take part in a hands-on experience with one of the hotel chefs who will show you how to prepare Hoppers, a famous Sri Lankan delicacy that resembles a pancake and is quite delicious!

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Cinnamon Lodge Habarana

Day 3

Polonnaruwa

After breakfast, drive for an hour to the medieval capital of Polonnaruwa, which was the second kingdom of Sri Lanka and is now a UNESCO World Heritage site. Hop on your bike and pedal through many archaeological monuments. Look out for the famous Gal Viharaya, or “Rock Temple,” where you will see four colossal statues of the Buddha cut into the stone, reflecting peace, serenity, and strength. Continue biking through a rural village where you may have the opportunity to mingle with the local farming community. Enjoy a typical farmer’s lunch at a local restaurant after your ride

Later this afternoon, join a local naturalist on a game drive to one of the area’s national parks. See how many different animals you can spot along the way. After the game drive, enjoy exclusive sundowners while you bask in the glow of your wildlife discoveries.

Enjoy dinner as a group back at the hotel this evening

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Cinnamon Lodge Habarana

Day 4

Habarana

Today you are invited into the home of a local family who will show you how to make a meal comprised of 3 or 4 traditional dishes. Learn about their unique utensils and slow-cooking techniques.

After you finish preparing the food, take part in a traditional practice of alms giving where meals are offered to the monks in the village Buddhist temple.

The afternoon is yours to enjoy lunch on your own and time at leisure at the hotel before meeting back up with the group for dinner

Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Cinnamon LodgeHabarana 

Day 5

Sigiriya to Kandy

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before setting out on your journey to Kandy, known as the Last Kingdom of Sri Lanka. Along the way, visit the Dambulla rock caves and explore its renowned wall art, which dates back to the first century BC. You will be struck by the serenity and well-preserved nature of the site as you wander through the temple.

Visit a local workshop where you will have the chance to try your hand at the beautiful art of batik. The women who run the workshop will show you the traditional artistic batik techniques that have been handed down over many decades. Afterwards, enjoy lunch in the home of one of the local batik artisans before driving the last 90 minutes to Kandy.

Upon arrival in Bandarawela, check into your hotel before enjoying dinner with

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Jetwing Kandy Gallery

Day 6

Kandy

Today you will have the opportunity to learn about traditional Sri Lankan costumes and heirloom jewelry. Behold the intricately carved, precious stones that are embedded in the design, and see how the Sri Lankan saree is distinctively different from its Indian counterpart. Then meet with an expert gemologist who will show you how to identify the different gemstones before you can try your hand at gem cutting.

After lunch on your own, meet with a local single mother and hear how she supports her family by sewing. The group will collectively donate a sewing machine to help better her family.

Enjoy dinner as a group back at the hotel this evening.

Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Jetwing Kandy Gallery

Day 7

Kandy

Set out on an early morning trek to the Hanthana Mountain range today. Offering picturesque landscapes, this four-hour hike will immerse you in nature and the beautiful landscapes of Sri Lanka. Stop along the way and enjoy a picnic lunch before returning to the hotel.

The afternoon is yours to rest and relax at the hotel after your long hike.

During dinner tonight, you will enjoy a traditional Kandyan fusion dance performance.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Jetwing Kandy Gallery

Day 8

Kandy to Bandarawela

After an early breakfast, you will drive to the Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya where you will be met by an experienced botanist who has worked at the gardens for over 30 years. Listen as he shares stories of the garden’s history and the precious live collections that have been gathered over centuries.

You will spend the rest of the day traveling to the central highlands region of Sri Lanka, which is known for its tea production. After a drive, you will embark on a scenic 4-5 hour train ride for an authentic experience of traveling like a local! Make sure you take advantage of the incredibly beautiful scenery throughout your ride. From gushing waterfalls to vast tea terraces to expansive vegetable fields, there are many opportunities to capture captivating photos of your surroundings. Lunch will be on your own today.

Upon arrival in Bandarawela, check into your hotel before enjoying dinner with the group there tonight.

Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Anasa Wellness Resort

Day 9

Bandarawela

Today you will meet a Sri Lankan tea plucker at a working tea plantation where you will spend a day getting up close and personal with this local woman. She will share her story of how she learned the practice of tea harvesting and give you behind-the-scenes access to life on the tea plantation. Later, put your skills to the test as you participate in an exciting tea plucking competition!

Head back to your hotel for lunch and some downtime before enjoying a scrumptious high tea. Dinner will also be at the hotel with your group tonight.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Anasa Wellness Resort

Day 10

Bandarawela to Galle

After breakfast this morning, you will set out on a 5 -6 hour drive to Galle in the southern part of Sri Lanka. You will have the chance to stop and stretch your legs along the way, and you will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant while en route. Later this afternoon, arrive at your hotel and check-in. You will have the rest of the day at leisure until joining the group for dinner tonight

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Jetwing Lighthouse

Day 11

Galle

Set out on a 45-minute drive to an estate in the suburbs of Galle after breakfast. Upon arrival, freshen up with a cinnamon-infused towel before venturing on a guided tour of the estate. Learn about the method of growing and harvesting cinnamon as well as how a cinnamon tree can be transformed into the cinnamon sticks we purchase in the store. Watch a fascinating demonstration from one of the estate’s expert peelers to see how this intricate process is carried out. Continue to the estate’s factory and learn how this aromatic spice is gathered for grading and prepared for market. Cap off your morning with a delicious cinnamon-infused lunch.

After lunch, learn about the tradition of mask painting in Sri Lanka. You will have the chance to paint your own mask that you can take home with you!

Late this afternoon, take a guided tour of Galle Dutch Fort, another UNESCO World Heritage site. You will end your walk at the Moon Bastion, which overlooks the Indian Ocean. Enjoy dinner with the group later tonight.

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Jetwing Lighthouse

Day 12

Galle to Negombo

In addition to its famous tea plantations, Sri Lanka is also well known for its cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon is grown from a plant that is indigenous to Sri Lanka and is often referred to as the “real cinnamon.” This variety of spice is known for its distinct flavor, scent, and color.

Located north of Colombo lies the fishing town of Negombo. With its hectic harbor and bustling fish market, this town is a gourmet paradise with seafood aplenty. Palm-fringed beaches, old-fashioned catamarans, a Dutch-built canal, colonial architecture, and colorful boutiques all add character to this hub of activity.

After a leisurely breakfast, this morning set out on a 2-hour drive back to Colombo.

Enjoy some time in Colombo on a shopping tour in town where you can purchase vibrant clothing or handcrafted goods. Lunch will be on your own today.

Join your group tonight for a celebratory farewell dinner, as you reminisce about your favorite moments from your time in Sri Lanka!

Breakfast, Dinner 

Overnight: Jetwing Beach

 

Day 13

Depart Colombo

Transfer to the airport to catch your flight home.

Depart from Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) in Colombo, Sri Lanka at any time after 1PM today.

Breakfast

 

Please note: AdventureWomen will attempt to adhere to the itinerary as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, and cultural) may necessitate changes in the itinerary. AdventureWomen reserves the right to alter any itinerary at any time, if necessary. We will attempt to notify participants of changes as far in advance as possible. Costs incurred by such changes will be the responsibility of the participants. 

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Traveling to Sri Lanka



Arrival and Departure Information

May 6, 2024 Departure

Arrive: Arrive at the Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) in Colombo, Sri Lanka before 2:00PM on May 6, 2024

Depart: Depart from Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) in Colombo, Sri Lanka at any time after 1:00PM on May 18, 2024

We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. If you’d like to do anything prior to or following the AdventureWomen trip, we’d be delighted to help you arrange any trip extensions you’re interested in.

Note: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible booking last-minute registrants, we must release hotel rooms two to three months prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.

Preparation and Packing  

Please use the following guides as a reference when preparing for your adventure. We also encourage you to adapt the guides to your travel style as well as the destination’s forecasted weather.  

Gratuities  

Gratuities are a personal decision and are at your own discretion based on your level of satisfaction with the service provided. Gratuities are dependent upon the number of guests on your departure, and they vary greatly from trip to trip. As a general reference, AdventureWomen suggests you plan for $440-$450 (or more) worth of gratuities for this adventure. Specific tipping recommendations for your trip will be provided to you closer to your departure date and may fluctuate due to inflation, exchange rates, and the number of travelers on your trip. 

Passports and Visas

Citizens of the United States must have a passport valid for six months beyond your travel dates with at least two blank facing pages. If you do not have a passport, please apply now!

US Passport holders will need a visa to visit Sri Lanka. We will provide detailed information before your departure on how to obtain your visa.

Activity Level

We rate this trip as Active. Our Active adventures get you on your feet. You should be in good physical condition and be prepared to hike for up to five hours, multiple days in a row, on uneven surfaces with some steep ascents and descents. Please note that this is a general description of what you might encounter; for specific details about your trip, please consult the itinerary.

We recommend training before your trip (with your doctor’s permission!) to make the most of your adventure. We have a partnership with FitForTrips, a company that will design an individualized fitness plan for you with this itinerary in mind. Best of all, AdventureWomen guests get a 25% discount with the code FITWOMEN. Learn more on the FitForTrips website.

You should come with a flexible, adventurous, and enthusiastic spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor that adventure travel requires.

Health Considerations

Make an appointment with a travel clinic, as they may have recommendations for vaccines and medications based on the destination as well as your age, health, and past vaccination history.

For more health information, go to www.cdc.gov/travel and navigate to the page about Sri Lanka.

How to Register

Call the AdventureWomen office at (800) 804-8686 to determine space availability and register for this trip. We can complete your registration, including taking your credit card deposit over the phone.

If you prefer, you can register online by clicking “Sign Up for this Trip” on the trip page.

Please be sure to read the AdventureWomen policies before registering!

Forms and Final Payment

The deposit for this trip is $800, and is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Once you book, you will need to fill out and return to AdventureWomen:

  • Information Form
  • Booking Conditions Form
  • Copy of Flight Information
  • Copy of Issuing Page of Passport (Photo Page)
  • Supplemental Release for COVID

Final payment is due to AdventureWomen in a cash form (check, money order, or wire transfer). A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

May 6, 2024 Departure Final Payment Due Date: February 6, 2024 

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What's Included

Included

  •  Accommodations as per itinerary based on double occupancy
  • All meals as listed in the itinerary
  • Guided sightseeing and activities as indicated in the itinerary
  • English-speaking guide(s) throughout the trip
  • One group transfer on arrival and departure
  • All ground transportation
  • All gratuities except for main and assistant guides and driver

Not Included

  • International airfare to and from Sri Lanka
  • Optional activities
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages (unless otherwise specified)
  • Fees for passport, visas, immunizations, or travel insurance
  • Cost of hospitalization or evacuation
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities for main and assistant guides and driver

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Accommodations

Galle Face Hotel

Located adjacent to the green and the coast in Colombo, the Galle Face Hotel offers accommodations rich in history and tradition with modern furnishings. Relax and enjoy the sound of the water from your oceanview room.

Amenities: soap, shampoo, hairdryer, air conditioning, WiFi Cinnamon

Lodge Habarana

The Cinnamon Lodge Habanera is a sustainable lodge that is nestled in the heart of nature and surrounded by over 2,000 trees. Featuring traditional architecture with modern amenities, this lodge will leave you feeling relaxed and rejuvenated.

Amenities: soap, shampoo, hairdryer, air conditioning, WiF

Jetwing Kandy Gallery

Situated outside of the city center in Kandy and overlooking the Mahaweli River, the Jetwing Kandy Gallery is a lovely respite from the hustle and bustle of the city. Each room offers a river or garden view with a private balcony.

Amenities: soap, shampoo, hairdryer, air conditioning, WiFi, laundry service for an additional fee

Anasa Wellness Resort

A secluded, remote property located in the hills of Bandarawela, the Anasa Wellness Resort is focused on a holistic wellness experience. The resort has only 10 chalets surrounded by lush forests, guaranteeing a peaceful and restorative stay.

Amenities: soap, shampoo, hairdryer, air conditioning, WiFi

Jetwing Lighthouse

The Jetwing Lighthouse is an iconic hotel on the outskirts of Galle which overlooks the Indian Ocean. Each room has simple, tasteful furnishings and a private balcony or terrace with views of either the garden or the ocean beyond.

Amenities: soap, shampoo, hairdryer, air conditioning, WiFi

Jetwing Beach

The Jetwing Beach is located less than 30 minutes from the International Airport, the Jetwing Beach offers convenient accommodations in one of Sri Lanka's most popular beach towns. Each room features a private balcony where you can take in the ocean views.

Amenities: soap, shampoo, hairdryer, air conditioning, WiFi

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686