17 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

17 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

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17 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Start: Athens
+2
Fly + foot + bus:  17​h
1
Kandy
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Dambulla
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
3
Ella
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h
4
Arugam Bay
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
5
Galle
— 3 nights
taxi + Fly:  22​h 30​min
End: Athens

4
nights
Kandy

Kandy ©
Nestled between mountains in inland Sri Lanka, Kandy proudly bears its World Heritage Site designation while remaining culturally independent and colorfully picturesque.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Kandy: Bambaragala Viharaya (in Teldeniya), Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage (in Pinnawala) and Elephant Freedom Project (in Kegalle). The adventure continues: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, admire the natural beauty at Royal Botanical Gardens, don't miss a visit to Kandy view point, and stop by Prestige Selections - Batiks, Handicrafts and Gift Items.

For more things to do, where to stay, other places to visit, and more tourist information, you can read our Kandy trip planner .

Athens, Greece to Kandy is an approximately 17-hour combination of flight and bus. The time zone difference when traveling from Athens to Kandy is 3 hours. On the 17th (Fri), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Dambulla.

Things to do in Kandy

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites

Side Trips

Bambaragala Viharaya, Elephant Freedom Project, Royal Botanical Gardens, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
Find places to stay Jan 13 — 17:
Highlights from your plan
Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic ©
Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic
Kandy Lake ©
Kandy Lake
Royal Botanical Gardens ©
Royal Botanical Gardens

3
nights
Dambulla

Dambulla ©
On a trip to Dambulla, visit the largest and best-preserved cave temple complexes in the country, declared a World Heritage Site.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Dambulla: Polonnaruwa (Gal Vihara & Polonnaruwa Vatadage), Mihintale (in Anuradhapura) and Sigiriya (Lanka Silks & Pidurangala Rock). Next up on the itinerary: Head underground at Golden Temple of Dambulla, take in nature's colorful creations at Popham's Arboretum, examine the collection at Sigiriya Museum, and make a trip to Ibbankatuwa Megalithic Tombs.

For ratings, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Dambulla vacation tool .

You can drive from Kandy to Dambulla in 2.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Mon) early enough to drive to Ella.

Things to do in Dambulla

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

Sigiriya, Polonnaruwa, Mihintale
Find places to stay Jan 17 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
Golden Temple of Dambulla ©
Golden Temple of Dambulla
Sigiriya ©
Sigiriya
Pidurangala Rock ©
Pidurangala Rock

2
nights
Ella

Ella ©
The relaxing hilltop village of Ella benefits from a more temperate climate than much of the rest of country thanks to its high elevation.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Tue): take in the awesome beauty at Little Adam's Peak, snap pictures at Demodara Nine Arch Bridge, then take in nature's colorful creations at Honey Bee Garden, and finally admire the sheer force of Ravana Ella Falls. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 22nd (Wed): indulge your taste buds at Food & Drink and then explore the striking landscape at Ella Rock.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, photos, and tourist information, use the Ella road trip planner.

Traveling by car from Dambulla to Ella takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and train. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Wed) to allow time to drive to Arugam Bay.

Things to do in Ella

Parks Nature Tours
Find places to stay Jan 20 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Little Adam's Peak ©
Little Adam's Peak
Demodara Nine Arch Bridge ©
Demodara Nine Arch Bridge
Ella Rock ©
Ella Rock

2
nights
Arugam Bay

Arugam Bay ©
On the 23rd (Thu), don't miss a visit to Magul Maha Viharaya, take in the spiritual surroundings of Kudumbigala Monastery, then explore the ancient world of Sangamankandy Pilliyar Kovil, and finally make a trip to Muhudu Maha Vihara. Here are some ideas for day two: stop by Rice & Carry Bags Shop, explore the activities along Arugam Bay, enjoy the sea views from Sangaman Kanda Lighthouse, then contemplate the waterfront views at Pottuvil Lagoon, and finally indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find more things to do, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, use the Arugam Bay tour itinerary builder app .

Drive from Ella to Arugam Bay in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In January in Arugam Bay, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 26°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Galle.

Things to do in Arugam Bay

Historic Sites Parks Nature

Side Trip

Magul Maha Viharaya
Find places to stay Jan 22 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Sangaman Kanda Lighthouse ©
Sangaman Kanda Lighthouse
Pottuvil Lagoon ©
Pottuvil Lagoon
Muhudu Maha Vihara ©
Muhudu Maha Vihara

3
nights
Galle

Galle ©
The southernmost city on the island, Galle combines colonial-era history with a tropical feel and climate.
Get out of town with these interesting Galle side-trips: Mirissa (Dolphin & Whale Watching & Mirissa Beach). And it doesn't end there: contemplate the long history of Galle Fort, take a peaceful walk through Sinharaja Forest Reserve, look for all kinds of wild species at Sea Turtle Farm and Hatchery, and don't miss a visit to Japanese Peace Pagoda.

To find traveler tips, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Galle trip maker app .

Getting from Arugam Bay to Galle by car takes about 5 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and flight; or do a combination of taxi, flight, and train. In January, daytime highs in Galle are 37°C, while nighttime lows are 27°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Mon) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Galle

Parks Outdoors Wildlife

Side Trips

Mirissa, Unawatuna, Sea Turtle Farm and Hatchery
Find places to stay Jan 24 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Sinharaja Forest Reserve ©
Sinharaja Forest Reserve
Galle Fort ©
Galle Fort
Dolphin & Whale Watching

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