Independence Square Monument : Located in the heart of Colombo city it is the National Monument built in commemoration of the Sri Lanka’s Independence from British rule on 4th February 1948. At the head of the monument you also find a statue erected in memory of the first Prime Minister of Sri Lanka the Rt. Hon. D.S. Senanayake – ‘The Father of the Nation”

Independence Arcade : Located in close proximity to Independence square the newly refurbished arcade is worth a visit. Maintaining its beautiful architecture it combines the bygone era and modern times. The arcade consists mainly of high end boutiques, the likes of FCUK, French Connection, Charles & Keith fusion restaurants and fast food outlets.

The Colombo Museum : The National Museum of Colombo was established in 1877 and houses collections of great importance to Sri Lanka including the throne and crowns of the Kandyan Monarchs.

The Parliament : The beautiful old parliament building is located approx. 10- 15minutes out of Colombo and is surrounded by the Diyawanna Lake. Though visiting the Parliament building itself may not be possible its surrounding areas are lovely for a nice stroll. There are also little outlets available there for a quick snack. The plant sale (every Friday – Sunday) and the Good Market (every Thursday – organic veges and foods etc...) are also held here.

Ape Gama : ‘Ape Gama’ meaning ‘Our Village’ is a replica of the typical village concept of former times. Here you can also experience the different arts and crafts/ handicrafts of the people.

The Floating Market – Pettah : The first of its kind in Sri Lanka, the new floating market offers guests a unique shopping and dining experience. The market consists of 92 stalls ranging from fresh produce to restaurants and refreshment stalls are a must see!
Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage : Located on 25 acres of land in Kegalle, Pinnawela is an orphanage, nursery and captive breeding ground for orphaned, unweaned wild elephants that are in need of care and protection. Visitors to the orphanage can participate in the bottle feeding and bathing of the baby elephants should they wish to do so.

Feeding times are at 9.15 a.m., 1.15 p.m. and 5 p.m. Bathing times from 10 a.m. – noon and from 2 – 4 p.m. The bathing takes place at the end of the road opposite the entrance to the orphanage compound.

The Sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic : ‘The Sri Dalada Maligawa’ Temple is one of the two most important Buddhist Temples in Sri Lanka. Located in the Royal Palace Complex of the former Kandyan Kingdom it houses the relic of the tooth of Lord Buddha. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Dress Code: Trousers, Sarongs, Long Skirts. Shorts, skinnys and three quarters are not allowed.

Arthur’s Seat : A point from which you can overlook (an aerial view) Kandy City and the Kandy Lake. Best visited at sunset.

Royal Botanical Gardens : Dating back as far as the year 1371, the Royal Botanical Gardens was declared a royal garden in 1747 by the ruling king at that time - King Kirti Shri Rajasinghe. Located on approximately 147 acres of land the garden houses thousands of varied flora, 1,127 of which are indigenous to Sri Lanka.

Kandy Lake : Built in 1807 by King Sri Wickrema Rajasinghe it is located in the heart of Kandy next to the Sacred Temple of the Tooth. It is a protected lake and has many a legend and folklore tied to it, one of them being that it was the bathing place of the Queen and the ladies of the court. The island in the centre of the lake is also a beautiful sight surrounded by bamboo trees and thickets.

Udawatte Kele Sanctuary: The sanctuary is a historic forest reserve in the hilly-region of Kandy. The Sanctuary is famous for its varied flora and birdlife. It is also of religious importance due to the Buddhist meditation hermitages and the rock shelter dwellings of the Buddhist hermit monks who live there.

Ancient Cities

Dambulla Cave Temple : “The Golden Temple of Dambulla” is the largest and best preserved cave temple in Sri Lanka. Though there are approx. 80 caves in the surrounding area it is the 5 main caves that house the statues of Lord Buddha and the Bodhisatta as well as the paintings. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Definitely a must see!

Iron Wood Forest & Rose Quartz Mountain Range : Called ‘Namal Uyana’ it is the largest Ironwood Forest and Rose Quartz Mountain range in Asia. This rare forest dates back to the 8th Century AD and contains the largest plant fossil deposit in Sri Lanka. It was declared a National Forest in 2005.


Sigiriya Rock Fortress : This historic world re-known rock fortress was deemed to be the 8th man-made wonder of the world. The palace atop the rock was built during the reign of King Kashyapa between approximately (477-495 CE). The palace atop the rock is adorned with beautiful frescoes painted on the walls of cloud maidens. Half way up the rock you also find a huge gateway carved in the shape of an enormous lion. Sigiriya is a UNESCO World Heritage site and definitely a must see/climb when you visit Sri Lanka.


Statue of King Parakramabahu : Known as King Parakramabahu the Great he ruled the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa from 1153 – 1186. He was truly a great king and was one of the last monarchs in Sri Lankan history to have unified the three kingdoms of the Island. He constructed irrigation systems, looked to the welfare of his people, built reservoirs, hospitals and beautified the Country. This statue was built in his memory by grateful a nation.

Parakrama Samudraya : “The Sea of King Parakrama”, this man made reservoir is vast and was built during the reign of King Parakramabahu the Great.

The Vatadage : Is an ancient structure built during the reign of King Parakramabahu to house the tooth relic of Lord Buddha.

Gal Vihare : Built in the 12th Century by King Parakramabau - it is the Rock Temple of the Buddha. The main features of the shrine are 4 statues of Lord Buddha carved in to the rock. The statues have been carved in different positions one seated, one reclining one smaller figure in a cavern/cave and standing.

Thuparamaya : It is one of the only structures that has a roof made totally of bricks and is still standing almost totally whole even though it was built over 900years ago.

Sandakada Pahana : Also known as the Moon Stone. It is a semi-circular stone slab generally placed at the bottom of a staircase or entrance. According to Historians it depicts/symbolises the cycle of Samsara in Buddhism. It is beautifully carved and showcases the unique architecture/stone carvings of ancient Sri Lanka.


The Atamasthanaya (Eight Great places of Veneration) : After the Sacred Temple of the Tooth in Kandy. The ‘Atamasthanaya’ is the most sacred place of worship to Sri Lankan Buddhists. They are the Shri Maha Bodhiya, Ruwanveliseya, Thuparamaya, Lovamahapaya, Abhayagiriya, Jetavanaramaya, Mirisavetiya and the Lankaramaya.

Shri Maha Bodhiya : This temple houses the sacred Bo-sapling brought to Sri Lanka by the Bikkhuni (female monk) Sanghamitta.

Ruwanveliseya : This dagoba was at one time the biggest dagoba in the World. It is a beautiful structure and a must see if you visit Anuradhapura especially at night when its pinnacle is lit. It is an amazing structure with masterful architecture dating back to King Dutugemunu in 140B.C.

Thuparamaya : It is considered the first dagoba ever built during the reign of King Devanampiyatissa after the introduction of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.

Lovamahapaya : Known as the brazen palace of Lohaprasadaya as its roof was made of bronze tiles. It is located between the Shri Maha Bodhiya and the Ruwanveliseya. It was completely destroyed during the reign of King Saddhatissa and now only the main chapter house and a number of the 1600 stone pillars remain.

Abhayagiriya : Was one of the most important/main monasteries sites for Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism. Founded on the 2nd Century B.C. Historically it was a great monastic centre and part of the Royal capital of Anuradhapura.

Jetavanaramaya : Built in 273 – 301A.D. by King Mahasena and thereafter completed by his son Meghavanna was believed to have housed the relic of the sacred sash tied by Lord Buddha.

Mirisavetiya : This dagoba was built by King Dutugemunu after defeating the Chola King Elara. It is said that the dagoba was built where King Dutugemenu had laid his sceptre.

Lankaramaya : Is an ancient Stupa built by King Valagamba.

Mihintale : A mountain peak near Anuradhapura. It is believed to be the meeting point of King Devanampiyatissa and the Buddhist Monk Mahinda.

Ritigala Nature Reserve : The Ritigala Mountain is located 43mins from Anuradhapura. It is approx. 766m above sea level and is not only known for being a nature reserve but also as an ancient Buddhist Monastery is located there whose rock inscriptions date back to the 1st Century B.C.E.

Aukana Buddha Statue: Dating back to the 5th Century this beautiful statue of Lord Buddha stands over 40 feet in height and is carved out of granite rock face.

Koneswaram Temple : Built from 205B.C. it is known as the Temple of the thousand pillars is a classical medieval Hindu shrine. The monument contains the main shrine to Lord Shiva and is one of the main Hindu pilgrimage sites. The shrine is located atop Swami Rock.
Jaffna Fort : Built by the Portugese in 1619 it is the second largest Dutch Fort built in Sri Lanka. It is located on the South side of the Jaffna peninsula at the edge of the Lagoon. Unlike the Dutch Fort in Galle and Colombo the Jaffna Fort an exclusively military function.

Nagadeepa : Is an ancient Buddhist Temple located in the Jaffna. It is one of Sri Lanka’s 16 or 17 most important Temples. According to historians it is the site where the Gautama Buddha visited a few years after attaining enlightenment to settle a dispute between the two Naga Kings Chulodara and Mahodara.

Nallur Shrine : Founded in the 10th Century it is one of the most significant Hindu Temples in Jaffna. The presiding deity be Lord Murugan in the form of the Holy Vel.
Hill Country
Nuwara Eliya

Nuwara Eliya & Fully Functional Tea Factories : The Tea Industry commenced in Sri Lanka in 1847 during the British rule and is now one of the main sources of export/trade. Though Tea is grown in the Southern provinces of the Country on a small scale it is in the cooler climes/regions of Nuwara Eliya (Hill Country) that you find the main tea plantations. There are many fully functional tea factories that can be visited on tour.

Bakers Falls : Is situated in Horton Plains. The height of the falls is approx. 20ft.

St. Clairs Falls : Is one of the widest falls in Sri Lanka. The falls consist of drops the main fall (Maha Ella) which is 80m high and the smaller fall (Kuda Ella) which is 50m high.

Horton Plains (Mini Worlds End) : Is a sheer precipice located in Horton Plains National Park 870m (2854ft) drop.

Seetha Amman Temple : This temple/shrine is located in close proximity to Hakgala Botanical Gardens in a town called Seetha Eliya in Nuwara Eliya. It is believed that the temple was the place Sita was held captive by King Ravana in the epic ‘The Ramayana’.

Adisham : Located in Haputale is a seminary run by the monks of the Sylvestro-Benedictine Congregation. There are orchards that surround the monastery where the monks help villagers to cultivate the land. The fruits of the land are then utilised to produce natural/fresh jams, jellies and cordials that can be purchased there.

Hakgala Botanical Gardens : Established in 1861 the gardens are situated approx. 1745m above sea level on 28ha of land. The flora of the gardens are distinctly sub-tropical .


Ravana Falls : Is one of the widest falls in Sri Lanka at a height of approx. 82ft it cascades down an oval shape rocky outcrop. The falls are named after the famous King Ravana from the epic ‘The Ramayana’. It is said that King Ravana kidnapped princess Sita and hid her in the caves behind the falls.

Dunhinda Falls : Located in the town of Badulla it cascades down from a height of 210ft. It is one of the most beautiful falls in Sri Lanka.

Little Adams Peak : Is located approx. 2Kms from Ella town. This mountain range is rich in bio-diversity and is approx. 10Acres in extent. The view from the top of the Peak is beautiful and you can see as far as the Kataragama and Hambantota Beaches. So if you are in the area its worth a visit.

The Nine Arches Bridge : Built during the British colonial period in Sri Lanka, this 99ft bridge is located approx. 3100ft above sea level. The bridge is built of solid rock and bricks with no use of metal. It is also called the ‘Bridge in the Sky’ due to its sheer height and also as you can see what seems to look like 9 skies through its nine arches when you stand below it.


Adams Peak : Known as ‘Sri Paadaya’ (Sacred Footprint) or ‘Samanala Kande’(butterfly mountain) is a very important part of the history of Buddhism. It is stated in the ‘Mahawamsa’ that Lord Buddha visited this mountain peak. A boulder at the peak of the mountain contains an indentation of a footprint that is said to belong to the Buddha when he visited Sri Lanka. It is also considered the highest mountain in Sri Lanka and definitely worth a visit. The climb generally takes a number of hours and should commence at dawn in order to experience the beauty of the sunrise from its summit.

National Wildlife Parks
Yala : The Yala National Park is the second largest park in Sri Lanka and definitely the most visited. It was designated a wildlife park in the year 1900. The Yala National Park is best known for its variety of animals like the Sri Lankan elephants, Sri Lankan leopard, sloth Bear, crocodiles, aquatic birds etc…

Yala National Park closes from 01st – 30th Sept due to the dry season and the scarcity of rains to that area.

Uda Walawe : This national park was originally created to take in wild animals displaced due to the building of the Uda Walawe reservoir. It is one of the main parks for the herds of Sri Lankan Elephant and a huge variety water birds. It is the third most visited park.

Wilpattu : Wilpattu is the oldest and the largest national park in Sri Lanka. A unique feature of this park is the existence of over 60 ‘Willus’ which are the natural lakes and tanks located there. The wildlife park also consists of many threatened species like the Elephant, Leopard, Sloth Bear, Sambhur, Large White Egeret, Painted Stork, Whistling teal, Pin Tail, Mugger Crocodile, Rate Snake, Pond Turtle etc…to name a few. The park is also rich in a variety of flora.

Wasgamuwa : The Wasgamuwa National Park was another park that like Uda Walawe which was created to take in the displaced animals due to the Mahaweli Development Project in 1984. Wasgamuwa is one of the main parks where you can see large herds of wild elephants as well as a small variety of other animals as well.

Bundala : This park is internationally important as it is a wintering ground to many migratory birds. The park has a 197 species of birds that visit and nest there. One of its main highlights are the flamingos that migrate in large flocks and are a beautiful sight to see. The park was designated a national park in 1969.

Kumana : This park is famous for its birdlife (avifauna). Particularly for its flocks of migratory birds like the wading birds and waterfowl. It is a part one of the blocks of the Yala National Park.

Minneriya National Parks : Minneriya was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1938. This park is re-known for the Elephant migration that takes place every year during the month of August. It is truly a fantastic site to see the herds of wild elephants that visit. It is the perfect opportunity to experience/see these gentle giants close up in their natural habitat feeding, bathing, fighting and caring for their young.

Horton Plains National Park : Is a located in the central highlands of Sri Lanka. It is approx. 2100-2300m high (6500-7500ft) and is rich in bio-diversity. It was designated a National Park in 1988. Many types of flora and fauna can be found here.

South & South West Coast
Kalutara Bodhiya : Is one of the most famous Sacred Buddhist Shrines in Sri Lanka and houses one of the saplings of the main Sacred Bo Tree in Anuradhapura. It is a shrine that is visited by many a traveler not only for its historical value but also to request for a safe journey.

Mask Factory Ambalangoda : Re-known for the making of wooden masks and puppets. It is a definite must see if you have the time. The beautifully handcrafted and hand painted masks and puppets depict the colourful and vibrant culture of dance and the folklore of Sri Lanka.

Madu Ganga (Madu River) Boat Safari : The Madu River boat ride through the wetlands of Balapitiya spans approx 61hectares. Upton 300 varieties of plants and 111 species of bird life many of them migratory birds have been identified in these mangroves.

Galle Fort : the historic Galle Fort was built by the Portugese in 1588 and then fortified extensively by the Dutch from 1649-17th Century. It is considered a UNESCO World Heritage site and is definitely worth a visit. Take a stroll down its quaint little avenues and visit its many little antique jewellery and craft shops as well its lovely little restaurants. The sunset from the Fort is a truly beautiful sight!

Kosgoda Sea Turtle Conservation Project : this project has been underway since 1988. The main aim being to monitor and conserve the local nesting sites and to protect the beautiful and endangered sea turtles in their natural habitat. It also houses a hatchery where the eggs rescued from predators are cared for and hatched and then released back to the sea.

Maritn Wickremasinghe Folk Museum Koggala : Located in the town of Koggala past Galle and open from 9am to 5pm. The folk museum is housed in the ancestral home of the re-known Sri Lankan author Martin Wickremasinghe. It has a fascinating collection of artefacts to do with Buddhism, the agro industry, fishing, pottery, metal artefacts and many others to do with Sri Lankan Folk Culture.

Hudungoda Virgin White Tea Estate : The estate spans approx 200acres and comprises of SpecialityTea, Rubber, Cinnamon, Pepper and Coconut Plantations. The conditions of this estate are almost like a rain forest and is home to many a variety of bird and animal life. The Estate produces a small amount of speciality teas free of insecticides or pesticides. Their flagship Virgin White Tea has won many an accolade and International acclaim.

Dolphin & Whale watching : A definite must-do! if you are visiting Sri Lanka during the months of November - April. It is a truly beautiful sight to watch the schools of frolicking Dolphins and the majestic rise and dive of the Whales. Dolphin and Whale watching excursions are possible in Mirissa (South Coast - Dolphin and Whales) and Kalpitiya (North West Coast - mainly Dolphin).

Sinharaja Rainforest : The largest rainforest in Sri Lanka. It has been designated a biosphere reserve and a World Heritage site by UNESCO. It is home to a treasure trove of endemic Flora & Fauna and it is definitely worth a visit if you are a nature lover.

Moonstone Mines : The mines and factories are located in the village called Meetiyagoda in Ambalangoda. The best quality and variety of moonstones are found here. The moonstones are found in 2 pigments of Blue and White. The Blue being more in demand.

Kanneliya Rainforest : It is a forest complex in the South of Sri Lanka. It has been designated a biosphere reserve by UNESCO a few years back. It is the last remaining rainforest in Sri Lanka after Sinharaja and harbours many animal and plant species.

Andalahena Waterfall : Though just 12Metres high this waterfall is a beautiful one. Located within the 4770hectares of the Beraliya Jungle it can only be accessed by foot after a certain point. The true beauty of this fall can only be appreciated close up.

Ramayana Trails
Sita Eliya : (translated as Sita\\\'s light) is located between Nuwara Eliya and Hakgala. Its is said to be the place (then referred to as the Asoka Woods) where Sita-Devi was held captive by King Ravana. It is here that she spent her days of captivity surrounded and taunted by the Rakshasas while waiting for Rama to come and save her.