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Sri Lankan Surprise

Tour & Return Economy Class Flights From $6,352* per person

Dates: 12 - 25 April 2021

Fully escorted

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Duration: 14 days

Experience the Solo Connections difference when you join us in fascinating Sri Lanka! Solo Connections tours are fully escorted, unique small group tours designed specifically for solo travellers over 50. Our tour includes comfortable quality accommodation in Sri Lanka with your own private room, most meals and tailor-made sightseeing.

Take our 14 day tour to the island nation of Sri Lanka, home to eight UNESCO world heritage sites. Surrounded by the Indian Ocean, Bay of Bengal and Gulf of Mannar, Sri Lanka will delight you with their exotic fruits, food and spices. Not just world famous for it’s Ceylon Tea, Sri Lanka also has many animal and wildlife sanctuaries. Join us for an unforgettable adventure to this fascinating country.

Highlights

• Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
• Sigiriya Rock Fortress
• Polonnaruwa Ancient Kingdom
• Minneriya National Park
• Matale Spice Garden
• Temple of Tooth
• Scenic Train Trip
• Yala National Park Wildlife Safari
• Galle
• Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery

For more information, or to secure your place, call us today at 1300 044 444

14 Days
Fully Escorted

Departing Brisbane 12 April 2021

Pricing

$6,352* per person inclusive of return economy class airfares from Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne – ask us about departing from other capital cities.

Includes

  • • Economy class airfares including taxes*
    Private single rooms in quality accommodation
    • Meals as per itinerary – 12 Breakfasts, 1 Lunches, 11 Dinners
    • Sightseeing tours and airport transfers by private A/C vehicle
    • Tour Escort – travels with group from/to Brisbane
    • Local English speaking escort guide
    • Tipping (Guides, Drivers, Meals)

Excludes

  • Any meals other than mentioned above
  • Items of a personal nature i.e. laundry, drinks, phone calls, etc
  • Travel Insurance
  • Required Sri Lankan Visa

*Please note: Airport Transfers are only available with the group flights. 

For more information, or to secure your place, call us today at 1300 044 444

Day 1

Brisbane – Colombo via Singapore 
Today meet with your Tour Manager at Brisbane International Airport for our flight to Singapore and ongoing to Sri Lanka. When we arrive at Colombo international airport, our local guide will be waiting and will transfer us to our hotel to check in.

Accommodation:  Jetwing Colombo Seven (2 nights)

Day 2

Colombo  (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel we will take a guided city tour in Colombo. Driving through the city we are taken to the busy commercial areas as well as the tree-lined residential, Cinnamon Gardens. Visit Fort, the former British administrative centre and military garrison, Sea Street – the Goldsmith’s quarters in the heart of Pettah, the Bazaar area, a Hindu Temple with elaborate stone carvings and the Dutch Church of Wolfendhal dating back to 1749. If time permits, we may also be able to see the replica of Avukana Buddha & the Independence Square. Returning to our hotel to freshen up, we will then come together this evening for a Welcome Dinner.

Day 3

Colombo – Pinnawala – Sigiriya – Habarana (B-D)
Today after breakfast we start the day with a visit the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage which is situated approx 90 km from Colombo. The orphanage was originally founded in 1975 by the Sri Lanka Department of Wildlife Conservation. It is aimed at providing care and protection for many of the orphaned baby wild elephants found wandering in the forests of Sri Lanka. Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage also places an emphasis on breeding and ongoing research for these gentle giants.Later this afternoon we make our way to one of Sri Lanka’s major attractions, the Sigiriya Rock Fortress. Built by King Kashyapa (477-495 AD), it was for the sole purpose of protecting him from his rivals. An UNSECO World Heritage listed site, it is also known as the “Fortress in the Sky”. The climb up to the top of the fortress doesn’t only offer the reward of breathtaking views but there is so much to discover during your climb to the top. Highlights of the climb include water gardens, artistic frescoes, mirror wall, the lion gate and the magnificent views from the rock summit. A good level of fitness will be required to climb to the summit and involves a lot of stairs. Arriving into Habarana we will check into our hotel and then meet for dinner.

Accommodation: Habarana Village By Cinnamon (2 nights)

Day 4

Polonnaruwa – Minneriya (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel we depart for a guided tour of Polonnaruwa Ancient Kingdom. Polonnaruwa was founded in the 11th Century AD and was governed by many Kings. King Parakrambahu I’s reign was considered the most significant for this ancient kingdom. During his reign (12th Century AD) this second Kingdom of Sri Lanka (after Anuradhapura) was known as the Golden Age of Polonnaruwa, as Parakrambabu ruled during an era where trade and agriculture was at its peak. This afternoon we get to enjoy a game drive at Minneriya National Park. The extent of the Minneriya National Park is approximately 8,889 hectares. Dry zone plant and animal species are common. The elephants, however, are a highlight of the park. Approximately 160 species of birds, 9 amphibians, 25 reptile species, 26 fish species and more than 78 butterfly species can also be found here. There are also rare bamboo trees in this park which is unique to Minneriya National Park. Returning to the hotel we will meet this evening for dinner.

Day 5

Habarana – Matale – Kandy (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel we leave for Kandy. Along the way we will make a visit to Matale Spice Gardens which is located at Matale (in the Hill Country of Kandy). Sri Lanka is well renowned for its spices and natural ayurvedic remedies and Matale spice garden delivers it all! Stroll through the hand reared and harvested plantations of natural spices to satisfy the three main senses. See the large tropical trees and take in the fragrant aromas. Touch and learn about the popular and exotic spices that are so readily used in Sri Lankan cuisines and ayurvedic treatments. You will also have the opportunity to try some Sri Lankan cuisine using the popular spices, have a healing massage, purchase medicinal and cosmetic products created using the natural spices (at own cost). Upon arrival in Kandy we will be taken to our hotel to check in and then meet for dinner.

Accommodation: Ozo Kandy Hotel (2 nights)

Day 6

Kandy  (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel we visit Peradeniya Botanical Gardens. This beautiful garden is located 6km from Kandy and was first built as a pleasure garden by a Sinhala king and then expanded by the British. It covers approximately 147 acres and is a stroller’s paradise with extensive well-kept lawns, pavilions, an octagon conservatory, fernery, a giant Javan fig tree and numerous flower beds. The best attraction is the orchid House where you can discover more than 1000 plants. Afterwards we commence a city tour of Kandy. The Hill, capital of Kandy, lies picturesquely surrounded by mountains. Kandy is also the last kingdom of Sri Lanka and is a bustling city. Our tour, time permitting, can include Upper Lake Drive, a visit to a Wood carving & Gem shop, Gem Museum, Kandy Bazzar/markets and visit to a Batik Factory. This evening we visit The Temple of Tooth Relic (“Dalada Maligawa” as known to the locals). A sacred temple, it is also home to the palm-leaf transcripts and its history dates back to 1687. This stunning piece of architecture is instantly recognised by its octagonal shape and golden roof. Although you are not able to view the actual tooth itself, the casket within which it is held is occasionally displayed. Returning to the hotel, freshen up before we meet for dinner.

Day 7

Kandy – Nuwara Eliya (B-L)
After breakfast at the hotel we heading off to Nuwara Eliya with a part of our journey travelling via a Scenic Train ride from Peradeniya to Nanu Oya. A ride in the scenic carriage gives you an unparalleled view and penetrating glimpses both of the scenic beauty and culture of the hill country as we travel along. Continuing by coach, upon our arrival in Nuwara Eliya we will enjoy. Lunch at a local restaurant. Later we are taken to our hotel for check in and then the remainder of the day is Freedom of Choice, your tour host will be on hand to assist the group with afternoon and evening plans.

Accommodation: Jetwing St Andrews (1 night)

Day 8

Nuwara Eliya – Yala (B-D)
After we enjoy breakfast at the hotel this morning we have a travel day to Yala. This is going to be approximately 4 hours of driving, and we will have a few stops along the way. Upon arriving into Yala we will check in to our hotel, have time to relax and freshen up before meeting for dinner.

Accommodation: Jetwing Yala (2 nights)

Day 9

Yala (B-D)
We have an early start to enjoy a morning game drive at Yala National Park with packed breakfast. Embarking on an adventure of a lifetime we have a Wildlife Jeep Safari approximately 24km Northeast of Tissamaharama. Yala National Park is the best location to sight and photograph the rare and remarkable leopards. Other highlights of Yala include the herd of wild elephants, bears, wild boars, buffalos, deer, crocodiles and many species of birds. The vegetation ranges from open parkland to dense jungle. There are also an abundance of water supply for animals and birds ranging from waterholes, streams, small lakes to lagoons. Upon returning to the hotel spend the remainder of the day enjoying the hotel facilities before we meet for dinner in the evening.

Day 10

Yala – Galle  (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel we will proceed to Galle and commence a guided city tour upon arrival. Galle, recognised as the Southern Capital (116 km from Colombo) and home to the popular Fort called “Santa Cruz”, which is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The Fort which was initially built by the Portuguese in 1619 has been expanded and further developed by the Dutch and the British. Galle was the main seaport of Sri Lanka before Colombo and still handles shipping and cruising yachts to present. During the tour of Galle, we may also have the opportunity to visit Galle Fort, Old Dutch Church and Walk along the Rampart, time permitting. At the conclusion of the tour we will make our way to the hotel for check in and some time to relax. This evening we meet for dinner.

Accommodation: Amari Galle (2 nights)

Day 11

Galle  (B-D)
Enjoy a relaxed breakfast before having a full day at leisure. Your tour host will discuss options with the group as to what everyone would like to do, this may include some optional excursions (at own expense) or simply relaxing and enjoying the hotel facilities. We will come together tonight for dinner.

Day 12

Galle – Kosgoda – Bentota (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel we take the 2.5hrs drive to Bentota. Enroute we get to visit the Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery. The turtle hatchery in Sri Lanka is one of the most recommended things to do by Lonely Planet. The small town of Kosgoda, on the southern strip, is famous for its turtle hatchery which is operated by the Wild Life Protection Society of Sri Lanka. At the hatchery, fishermen are paid for rescuing the vulnerable eggs, which they collect at night, along the sandy beach. Visitors can witness the exceptional sight of them hatching or even see tanks filled with new born hatchlings. After being fed, the baby turtles are returned back to the sea where they are released when they are 2-4 days old. Once placed on the beach, most baby sea turtles start moving towards the water, flapping their tiny flippers. People love to visit the hatchery and watch the turtles being released back into their natural habitat. We continue on and arrive into Bentota to check into our hotel and freshen up before meeting for dinner.

Accommodation: Avani Bentota (1 nights)

Day 13

Bentota – Colombo – Airport (B-D)
After breakfast at the hotel, we have the day at leisure and a late check-out until 4pm. Your tour host will discuss options with the group as to what everyone would like to do, this may include some optional excursions (at own expense) or simply relaxing and enjoying the hotel facilities. After we check-out from the hotel we proceed to Colombo for a farewell dinner at a local Restaurant. Late evening we depart to the Airport for our flights home.

Day 14

Colombo – Brisbane (via Singapore) (B-D)

We say goodbye to Sri Lanka as we head home with newfound friends and fabulous memories.

 

For more information, or to secure your place, call us today at 1300 044 444