23 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

23 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Sri Lanka visit planner

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Route & dates

23 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Start: Melbourne
Fly:  12​h 45​min
1
Colombo
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Hikkaduwa
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
3
Mirissa
— 3 nights
taxi + Fly:  1​h 15​min
4
Kandy
— 3 nights
Fly:  1​h 30​min
5
Yala National Park
— 2 nights
Fly:  2​h
6
Dambulla
— 2 nights
Fly + taxi:  2​h 30​min
7
Uda Walawe National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 30​min
8
Ella
— 4 nights
taxi + Fly:  14​h
End: Melbourne

3
nights
Colombo

Colombo ©
The commercial capital of the country, Colombo has added modern touches to its colonial-era core, creating an exciting and eclectic coastal city.
When in Colombo, make a side trip to see Dolphin & Whale Watching in Kalutara, approximately 1h 30 min away. There's much more to do: don't miss a visit to Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara, paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour, get engrossed in the history at Colombo National Museum, and view the masterpieces at Ganeshism Studio Gallery.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, go to the Colombo trip itinerary planner.

Melbourne, Australia to Colombo is an approximately 13-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 4 hours traveling from Melbourne to Colombo. When traveling from Melbourne in December, plan for a bit warmer days in Colombo, with highs around 36°C, while nights are much hotter with lows around 28°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Hikkaduwa.

Things to do in Colombo

Outdoors Beaches Parks

Side Trips

Dolphin & Whale Watching, Selyn
Find places to stay Dec 15 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
Mount Lavinia Beach ©
Mount Lavinia Beach
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Kayaking & Canoeing

4
nights
Hikkaduwa

Hikkaduwa ©
One of the most scenic beach resorts in Sri Lanka, Hikkaduwa features a number of long white sand beaches with palm trees and gentle waves.
Get out of town with these interesting Hikkaduwa side-trips: Galle (Sinharaja Forest Reserve & Galle Fort), Bentota Beach (in Bentota) and Unawatuna (Scuba & Snorkeling, Jungle Beach, & more). There's lots more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Hikkaduwa Beach, enjoy the sand and surf at Narigama Beach, and look for all kinds of wild species at Turtle Hatchery Hikkaduwa.

To see more things to do, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Hikkaduwa trip planner .

You can drive from Colombo to Hikkaduwa in 2.5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. In December in Hikkaduwa, expect temperatures between 36°C during the day and 28°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sun) so you can go by car to Mirissa.

Things to do in Hikkaduwa

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Unawatuna, Galle, Bentota Beach
Find places to stay Dec 18 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Bentota Beach ©
Bentota Beach
Jungle Beach ©
Jungle Beach
Sinharaja Forest Reserve ©
Sinharaja Forest Reserve

3
nights
Mirissa

The fishing town of Mirissa has developed into a notable tourist destination.
Explore Mirissa's surroundings by going to Galle (Kayaking & Canoeing & Nature & Wildlife Tours) and Nandana Tea Factory (in Akuressa). The adventure continues: get outside with Outdoor Activities, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, stop by LAZY.RIDE, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Mirissa Beach.

For traveler tips, maps, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Mirissa trip maker app .

Drive from Hikkaduwa to Mirissa in 1.5 hours. In December in Mirissa, expect temperatures between 35°C during the day and 26°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Wed) so you can travel to Kandy.

Things to do in Mirissa

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trips

Galle, Nandana Tea Factory
Find places to stay Dec 22 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Mirissa Beach ©
Mirissa Beach
Nature & Wildlife Tours

3
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), Elephant Freedom Project (in Kegalle) and Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage (in Pinnawala). There's still lots to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, explore the different monuments and memorials at Kandy Garrison Cemetery, contemplate the waterfront views at Kandy Lake, and look for gifts at Prestige Selections - Batiks, Handicrafts and Gift Items.

To see traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Kandy day trip app .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from Mirissa to Kandy takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and taxi; or drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Yala National Park.

Things to do in Kandy

Parks Wildlife Historic Sites

Side Trips

Bambaragala Viharaya, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, Royal Botanical Gardens, Elephant Freedom Project
Find places to stay Dec 25 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic ©
Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic
Royal Botanical Gardens ©
Royal Botanical Gardens
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage ©
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

2
nights
Yala National Park

Yala National Park ©
One of the most popular national parks in the country, Yala National Park boasts a wide variety of animals, and does important work in conserving and growing populations.
Start off your visit on the 29th (Sun): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kataragama Temple and then explore the striking landscape of Yala National Park. Here are some ideas for day two: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kiri Vehera and then see exotic creatures in open habitats at a safari tour.

To find photos, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read Yala National Park road trip planning site .

Traveling by flight from Kandy to Yala National Park takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and flight; or do a combination of train and bus. In December, daily temperatures in Yala National Park can reach 35°C, while at night they dip to 26°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Mon) so you can travel to Dambulla.

Things to do in Yala National Park

Nature Wildlife Tours

Side Trips

Kataragama, Yala National Park
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Yala National Park ©
Yala National Park
Safaris
Kataragama Temple ©
Kataragama Temple

2
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.
On the 31st (Tue), explore the ancient world of Sigiriya, take in the exciting artwork at Pethikada, and then Head underground at Golden Temple of Dambulla. Keep things going the next day: identify plant and animal life at Dhilip De Alwis, explore the wealth of natural beauty at Minneriya National Park, and then indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To see ratings, maps, and other tourist information, read our Dambulla journey planner .

Getting from Yala National Park to Dambulla by flight takes about 2 hours. Other options: do a combination of flight and taxi; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 1st (Wed) to allow time to travel to Uda Walawe National Park.

Things to do in Dambulla

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Habarana, Sigiriya
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 1:
Highlights from your plan
Golden Temple of Dambulla ©
Golden Temple of Dambulla
Minneriya National Park ©
Minneriya National Park
Dhilip De Alwis ©
Dhilip De Alwis

1
night
Uda Walawe National Park

Uda Walawe National Park ©
One of the primary nature reserves in the country, Uda Walawe National Park provides vital habitat for a herd of Sri Lankan elephants.
Start off your visit on the 2nd (Thu): explore the striking landscape of Udawalawe National Park.

Planning Uda Walawe National Park trip won't be overwheling when you use's Insprock itinerary maker.

Traveling by combination of flight and taxi from Dambulla to Uda Walawe National Park takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and flight; or drive. January in Uda Walawe National Park sees daily highs of 36°C and lows of 26°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) to allow time to drive to Ella.

Things to do in Uda Walawe National Park

Nature Parks
Find places to stay Jan 1 — 2:
Highlights from your plan
Udawalawe National Park ©
Udawalawe National Park

4
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.
Ella is known for nature, spas, parks, museums, and classes. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Little Adam's Peak, admire the natural beauty at Ella Spice Garden, take in the dramatic natural features at Ella Rock, and indulge in your favorite hot beverage with a coffee and tea tour.

For photos, traveler tips, ratings, and more tourist information, read Ella online journey builder .

You can drive from Uda Walawe National Park to Ella in 2.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Mon) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Ella

Parks Nature Tours
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Little Adam's Peak ©
Little Adam's Peak
Ella Rock ©
Ella Rock
Ravana Ella Falls ©
Ravana Ella Falls

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