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Day 01: London to Colombo

Depart from London Heathrow Airport terminal , on your scheduled overnight flight to Colombo . Your flight includes meals, drinks, and in-flight entertainment for your journey.


Day 02: Arrival Airport – Colombo – Negembo

Ayubowan! Welcome to Sri Lanka.

Welcome to Sri Lanka. Upon arrival at Bandaranaike International Airport, clear immigration, collect your luggage and follow exit sign. You will be met by our representative who will be holding a placard with “WELCOME COBRA HOLIDAYS” on it.

He will guide you to the vehicle and transfer you to your hotel in Negombo, a seaside town which is only 40 minutes away from airport.

Rest of the day at leisure or go shopping.

 

Meals: Dinner | Overnight: Negombo

 


Day 03: Negembo – Pinnawala Elephant orphanage – Habarna

After breakfast check out hotel, proceed to visit Pinnawala Elephant orphanage* for afternoon milk feeding at 1.15 p.m. Bottle feeding of the baby elephants is the highlight event of the place. We will also see the daily routine of care for baby elephants and other abandoned elephants.

Then drive to Habarna a journey of approximately 3hours.

*Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage – off Colombo-Kandy road is Pinnawela, where an orphanage was started in 1975 to house abandoned and wounded elephants. The number of elephants has increased to more than 65 now, including baby elephants brought from various parts, as well as the 14 babies born, as a result of the captive breeding programme. The best time to visit is the feeding time and the bathing time; when all the elephants are taken to the river close by.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Habarana


Day 04: Habarna – Anuradhapura  – Mihintale – Habarna

This morning after breakfast we proceed to Anuradhapura for a city tour of the ancient ruins and the Sri Maha Bodhi, the oldest tree on earth.

These ruins have the largest amount of ancient monuments of a great civilisation and is believed to be the home of Buddhism.

We visit and admire the Ruwanveli Seya Dagoba with its famous elephant wall from the 2nd Century BC and the Thuparama Dagoba from the 3rd Century BC. We will also visit  Abhayagiri  Dagoba, Moonstone or Sandakada pahana, Jetavanaramaya, Brazen Palace, Sri Maha Boodhi Temple, Isurumuniya Temple, Samadhi Buddha, Kuttam Pokuna and Mirisavatiya Dagoba.

In the afternoon, visit Mihintale, a mountain peak near Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka. It is believed by Sri Lankans to be the site of a meeting between the Buddhist monk Mahinda and King Devanampiyatissa which inaugurated the presence of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. It is now a pilgrimage site, and the site of several religious monuments.

Later return to your hotel in Dambulla for the night.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Habarana


Day 05: Habarna – Sigiriya – Polonnaruwa – Habarna

Today after breakfast we visit the famous Sigiriya Rock Fortress and Frescoes, Asia’s best preserved city of the first millennium. Soaring 200 metres above a forested plain, this ancient fortress dates back to the 5th century and has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its incredible feat of constructive engineering. Those who make it to the top are rewarded with astounding views. Make sure you are wearing sturdy footwear, as this is a very steep climb with some uneven slopes. Those unable to climb to the top can explore the gardens at the base of the rock and still get some fantastic shots of the fortress from below.

In the afternoon, visit the Walled City of Polonnaruwa, the second most ancient kingdom in Sri Lanka and another UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Explore the ruins Monasteries, Temples, Bathing Pools, Royal Palace, Audience Hall, Sacred Quadrangle, Dagaba Kiri Vihara, Shiva Devale No. 2, the daboga Pabalu Vehera, Buddha figures at Gal Vihara, Buddha statue at Lankatilaka  & buddhist statues all set in a forested Park surrounded by moats.

Evening: Proceed on Elephant back safari at Habarana Jungle.

All Elephant Back Safaris are accompanied by the mahout. A wooden saddle, a basket like enclosure upon a wooden platform is large enough to carry four passengers. Riders need to be on alert to stoop down to avoid being knocked by the overhanging branches of trees along the path.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Habarana


Day 06: Habarna – Dambulla Cave Temple – The Sacred Tooth – Spice Garden – Kandy

This morning after breakfast, we visit The Golden Cave Temple of Dambulla, Sri Lanka’s most exquisite cave temple a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are 153 Lord Buddha statues, 3 statues of Sri Lankan Kings and 4 statues of Gods and goddesses found here. The latter include those of Hindu Gods Vishnu and Ganesh.

We continue with our journey to Kandy. En-route we visit, a Spice Garden at Matale.

Sri Lanka is famous for many different types of Spices and you will be shown how some of these spices like the luscious Cinnamons, Cardamons, Pepper, Ginger plants etc. are grown and processed. You can also purchase your requirements of spices. At the spice garden enjoy a 10 minute free foot massage.

On arrival in Kandy, enjoy a sightseeing tour of Kandy city – the last kingdom of the Sinhalese, taking in the sights of Upper Lake Drive, and the Market Square. A walk around the town will let you indulge in some souvenir hunting with intricate treasures in wood, copper, silver, brass, ebony, bronze, lacquer work, handlooms, batiks, and reed-ware to choose from.

In the evening watch the Kanryan dance and cultural show, where the vibrant costumes and pulsating rhythms of traditional dance, drumming, music and fire walking from centuries old rituals will enthral you.

Then we pay homage to one of the most sacred religious sites in Sri Lanka, The Temple of the Tooth or Dalada Maligawa is believed to house the ‘tooth relic’ of the Lord Buddha.  This is a major shrine where pilgrims have revered Buddha’s tooth since the 16th century. Later we proceed to our hotel for check-in.

Note: Dress modestly and respectfully when visiting temples. Shoulders to knees should be covered, especially when entering places of worship. No shorts are allowed.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Kandy


Day 07: Kandy / Nuwara Eliya – Approx 03 Hrs Drive

After breakfast, we proceed to visit to a gem factory where you will see gems of all types that are found in Sri Lanka.

Then we head ‘up country’ to the city of Nuwara Eliya which resembles an old English town, complete with a lake, race track, well- kept lawns with hedges, an Anglican Church and an 18 hole golf course.

En-route we visit the staggering Ramaboda waterfalls (a 109 m high waterfalls one the highest in Sri Lanka). Then we visit Sri Baktha Hanuman Temple in Ramboda, after darshan visit the tea factory to see glimpse of the fascinating process that goes into making how the world’s favourite drink is prepared.

 

Then we drive to our hotel and check in.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Nuwara Eliya


Day 08: Nuwara Eliya – Sita Amman temple – Hakgala gardens

This morning after breakfast, we proceed to visit Sita Amman temple.

Then we visit Hakgala gardens known as Ashok Vatika – one of the pleasure gardens of King Ravana and Isthripura, where the exotic cave has a picturesque cascading waterfall that was in existence 2000 years ago.

Sita Amman temple – (Approximately 20 Minutes Drive)

Sitadevi was kept in queen Mandothari’s palace until she was moved to Sita Kotua and then on to Ashoka Vatika. The stream that runs from the hill, catered to the needs of Sitadevi during her stay at Ashoka Vatika. She is said to have bathed in this stream. Now there is a temple erected for Lord Rama, Sitadevi, Lakshmana and Hanuman by the side of this stream. It is interesting to note that foot prints akin to Lord Hanuman’s are found by this river – some small and some large.

The prominent temple architecture will not fail to attract your attention. Ancient statues of Rama and Sita can be seen on one side of the temple. The temple today is a modern building with its paintings, statues and pillars decorated with sculptures; all depicting the tale of Rama and Sita.

Hakgala Botanical Gardens – This is the exotic pleasure garden where King Ravana kept the depressed Sita, insisting that she marries him. It was here where the heartwarming meeting took place between her and Hanuman, who brought her Rama’s ring with the news that Rama was looking for her.

He offered to carry her back but she refused saying it would be an insult to Rama’s honor if she did so. Part of this majestic garden still exists. It is also said that Hanuman nearly destroyed it in order to prove to Ravana of the forces against him.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Nuwara Eliya


Day 09: Nuwara Eliya – Kithulgala – Ahungalla

After the breakfast, we travel to the Beach resort via Kithulgala (218 kms 5 hrs drive).

On arrival check in at your hotel. This evening is free time at leisure.

Dinner and overnight stay for 2 nights at RIU Resort and Spa 5* (All inclusive package)

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Ahungalla


Day 10: Ahungalla

Full day free time at leisure to enjoy the beaches etc.

Overnight stay at  5*  Hotel(All inclusive package) in your hotel

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner | Overnight: Ahungalla


Day 11:  Ahungalla – Anjaneyar Temple Colombo – City tour

Today after the breakfast we proceed to visit the Anjaneyar & Kelaniya Temple. This is the first Anjaneyar Temple in Sri Lanka and also the only Panchamuga (five faced) Anjaneyar Temple in Sri Lanka. It’s the only temple in the world to have a chariot for Anjanyear.

We also visit Kelaniya (Vibeeshana) Temple – After King Ravana’s death, Vibeeshana was coroneted as King of Lanka by Lakshmana at Kelaniya. There are murals enshrined outside the Buddhist temple depicting the crowning of Vibeeshana. The Kelani River is mentioned in the Valmiki Ramayana and Vibeeshana palace was said to be on the banks of this river. The reason Lakshmana crowned Vibeeshana, was because Rama had to return to India as he had to continue his self-exile of 14 years to honour the commitment to his father, King Dasarath of Ayodhya.

In the afternoon we depart for Colombo.

Upon arrival, we proceed for sightseeing city tour of Colombo.

We drive through the city taking you to the busy commercial areas as well as the tree-lined residential, Cinnamon Gardens. We visit Fort, the former British administrative centre and military garrison, Parliament, past the National Museum, Sea Street – the Goldsmith’s quarters in the heart of Petta, the bustling Bazaar area, a Gangarama Hindu Temple with elaborate stone carvings and the Dutch Church of Wolfendhal dating back to 1749.

The historic Dawatagaha Mosque and the former Eye Hospital are two buildings in Cinnamon Gardens worth looking at.

We will also visit the BMICH, see the replica of Avukana Buddha and the Independence Square.

After the city tour we will go for shopping at House of Fashions and ODEL the famous shopping stores.

Later proceed to check-in to our hotel in Colombo.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Colombo


Day 12: Colombo – Chilaw – Manavari Temple – Colombo

This morning after breakfast free time at leisure.

Later, we board our coach and drive toward Chilaw to visit Manavari Temple for Puja and Darshan (Approximately 120 minutes Drive).

Thereafter we proceed to visit Munneshwaram Temple (Approximately 20 Minutes Drive) situated in Munneswaram village, the center of the spiritual and religious life of the people dwelling in a medieval administrative division called Munneswaram Pattuva.

Manavari Temple is the first place where Lord Rama installed the holy Siva Lingam and prayed after the end of the war with King Ravana and till date this lingam is called as Ramalinga Shivan. Rameshwaram is the only other lingam in world named after Lord Rama.

Munneswaram Temple  is a temple complex of three shrines. The 1500-year-old inner sanctum of the main Siva temple has Tamil inscriptions and is an important pilgrimage centre.

It is believed that Munneswaram predates the Ramayana and a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva was located here. Munneswaram means the first temple for Shiva (Munnu + Easwaran). A Shiva Lingam was already here when lord Rama visited the place. Lord Rama after his victorious battle left for Ayodhya with Sita in one of King Ravana’s vimanas. He felt he was being followed by Bramhaasthi dosham (a malevolent black shadow) as he had killed King Ravana who was a Brahmin. When the Vimana was passing over Munneswaram, he felt the vimana vibrating, and realized the “Brahmaasthi Dosham” was not following him at this particular point. He stops the vimana at this juncture and asks God Shiva for a remedy. God Shiva blessed Lord Rama and advised installing and praying for four lingams at Manavari, Thiru Koneshwaram, Thiru Ketheshwaram and Rameshwaram in India, as the only remedy to get rid of the dosham.

Later return to Colombo.

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner | Overnight: Colombo


Day 13: Colombo – flight to London

After breakfast, free time at leisure.

Later in the afternoon, check out of the hotel and proceed to Bandaranaike International Airport Colombo to board your flight for London .

Your flight includes meals, drinks, and in-flight entertainment for your journey.

Meals: Breakfast


Day 14: London

Welcome to England. On arrival at London Heathrow Airport, follow signs for arrival/baggage claim, clear immigration, collect baggage and follow sign for exit.

Note:

  • Return flight – If your flight departs in the morning, you will arrive in U.K. on the same day.
  • Return flight – If your flight departs in the afternoon / evening, you will arrive in U.K. on the next day.

 ** Your tour ends, leaving you with many pleasant memories of a wonderful holiday. **

 

Highlights

Negembo (1 Night):

  • Beach

 Colombo (2 Nights):

  • City tour, Shopping, Hindu Temple

Habarana (3 Nights):

  • Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage, Dambulla Cave temples, Climb the Sigiriya  ‘Lion Rock’, Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Elephant Safari

Kandy (1 Night):

  • City tour, Spice Garden, Cultural show
  • The Temple of the Tooth (Budha Sacred Tooth Relic)

Nuwara Eliya (2 Nights):

  • Ramboda water falls, Tea Plantation, Sita Amman Temple, Baktha Hanuman Temple, Hakgala Botanical Gardens

 Ahungalla (2 Nights):

  • Beach
  • All Inclusive

 

Please Note:

  1. This holiday includes walking in some area of rough ground, gradient and steps.
  2. Your flight may depart just after midnight. Be aware, if it does, you must check in at the airport the evening prior to your departure date.
  3. Cobra Holidays itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider. The decision to participate in any such activities should be

Included/Excluded

Escorted Tour Package Includes:

  1. Meet and greet with our Tour Manager upon your arrival at London Heathrow Airport check in desk.
  2.  International flights in economy class departing from London Heathrow Airport with Full ATOL Protection. We can also arrange departures from your local airport upon request.
  3. Return hotel / airport transfers at your destination.
  4.  Twin / Double sharing room at quality hotels with private facilities including general hotel amenities.
  5.  Meals as per the itinerary – Key: B - Breakfast, L - Lunch, D - Dinner, N - No Meal. Indian dinners will be provided daily.
  6. All International and Domestic flights during your holiday including airport taxes.
  7. Sightseeing excursions and activities including entrance fees.
  8. Services of our multilingual Tour Manager including English speaking local tour guide.
  9.  Tips for local tour guides and drivers.
  10. Entertainment and surprises.

Escorted Tour Package Excludes:

  1. Travel & Medical Insurance – We request you to purchase your own comprehensive travel insurance to cover you during your holiday.
  2. Optional tours and Visas - Prices on the itinerary are approximate, subject to availability & can change at any time.
  3. Tourism and Room Taxes.
  4. Any expenses of personal nature, for example: Room service, drinks, porterage, telephone calls, laundry, bar service and beverages with meals etc.
  5.  Any additional expenses incurred due to flight delay, flight cancellation, unforeseen weather conditions, natural disasters, political unrests / closures and technical faults etc.
  6.  Excess luggage costs.
  7. Any surcharges, taxes, fuel increases and rate of currency exchange prior to your tour departure.

Visa Requirements

  1. British Citizens require a machine readable passport, valid for 30 days after the return date, when travelling to the Sri Lanka.
  2.  Visa Sri Lanka:- British Citizens require an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) to enter Sri Lanka. We are able to obtain this on your behalf, if requested, at a cost of £40 per person. If you do not require us to obtain the ETA you must make your own arrangements (please visithttp://www.eta.gov.lk), as you will not be able to travel without one. Please ensure you make your own arrangements to obtain the Visas if you require them.
  3.  Ensure sure your passport has sufficient blank pages. Most destinations require that you have adequate un-used pages in your passport, allowing for any necessary stamps upon arrival and departure. We recommend for each country you are visiting that you have at least two free pages in your passport before any international travel