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Sri Lanka for Families
Only in Sri Lanka
- See leopards, sloth bear and elephants
- Learn how to be a stilt fisherman
- Drink from a freshly picked coconut
✓ Summer, October and Christmas school holidays
✓ Culture & Education
✓ 5 years +
Sri Lanka is known as the 'nation of smiles'... –with a friendly population, fascinating history and culture and adventure in spades, it's also a cracking family destination.
Begin your Sri Lankan discovery in rural Sri Lanka, at a plantation bungalow that's so charming you'll feel as if you're back in the colonial times –until you see the pool, that is. This is the perfect base for the start of your adventures to the Cultural Triangle. This area is pretty massive, and ranges from the tangled green hills of the central highlands all the way down to the dry plains, but it's absolutely jam-packed full of sights that will wow you with their size and detail. As well as visiting the grand statues and relics of the region, you'll meet and dance with locals, learn all about cashews and enjoy traditional rice and curry dishes that taste a million times better than you'll get back home. One of our favourite highlights is the Sigiriya Rock Fortress, a spectacular rock citadel and possibly Sri Lanka's most extraordinary sight, which you can climb to the top –if you dare!
For a taste of home, what about kicking back with a cuppa? Surrounded by tea plantations, Nuwara Eliya is a small town referred to as Little England, although the similarities are somewhat dubious. Yala –the island's most wildlife-rich national park that's teeming with animals. On a safari game drive you could spot sultry leopards and mysterious sloth bears, keep your eyes peeled!
Sri Lanka is also famous for its beautiful white sand beaches. You'll be able to slip off your sandals and relax on the beach at Coco Tangalla, where you'll be able to make a trip to the nearby Rekawa Turtle Sanctuary or perhaps take a boat trip out to sea to spot blue whale. If you're looking to recreate some of the delicious Sri Lankan cuisine at home, why not try a cooking class with Amme? You'll be able to eat your creations for lunch afterwards. Coco Tangalla is perfect for exploring nearby Galle Fort. Expect the unexpected on a walking tour that will take you into the maze of hidden backstreets, revealing secret unknown spots such as extravagant 18th century merchant houses complete with ostentatious gold bedrooms, lavish pools and characters straight from Hemingway.
And from one stunning town to another, your holiday ends in Sri Lanka's picturesque capital, Colombo. Here you'll learn about the enchanting history of 'old Ceylon' and the fabulous colours that adorn the buildings, visiting the bustling Pettah markets and shopping precincts. We highly recommend a farewell dinner at the Ministry of Crab –the perfect end to your adventure. After all that excitement you'll certainly sleep on the way home!
Did you know...
- You'll find more leopards in Yala than anywhere else in the world
- Sri Lanka's shape means it is known as the 'pearl of the Indian Ocean'
- Buddha's tooth lives at The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy
- Shaking your head in Sri Lanka means yes as well as no!
- The national sport of Sri Lanka is volleyball, not cricket
- Elephants here follow a migration route determined by the monsoon rains
The Boring Bit
- Airline routes –London Heathrow to Colombo
- Flying time –10+ hours (GMT +6 hours)
- Visas –Are required and can be organised pre travel online
- Health considerations –Please consult your GP. General jabs required. Yellow fever vaccination required if travelling from an endemic area
Family itineraries in Sri Lanka
Family Sri Lanka
Nights: 14 | from £2,995
A magical 14 night family trip to Sri Lanka where you’ll enjoy the beaches of Sri Lanka's southwest coast and visit Polonnaruwa by bike.
Our preferred family accommodation in Sri Lanka
The Cape Weligama
The Fortress Resort & Spa
Sample Itineraries which could be adapted for families
Classic Sri Lanka
Nights: 13 | from £2,475
The tear-drop isle is ideal for a two-week trip – that’s enough time to pack in ancient forts and temples, world-class wild-life, hill walks, historic cities and some relaxation by the sea.
Highlights of Sri Lanka
Nights: 8 | from £1,995
This journey takes in the key sites of Sri Lanka, combining history and culture. This short itinerary can be extended to include wildlife or time on the beach.
Alternative family friendly accommodation in Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka: A New Chapter
Sri Lanka is sparkling once again. Jess Andrews tells us about the gem of an island close to her heart.