Highlights

Rainforest, unspoilt beaches, well-populated game parks, great surf, gorgeous hotels offering exceptional rates. Have we got your attention yet? Add into the mix a charming blend of Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Christian and indigenous cultures, along with spicy, traditional curries, rotis and egg hoppers – and you have the ideal Sri Lankan holiday.

Culture and coastlines
For such a compact island, there’s an astonishing number of heritage sites here – from colossal ancient monuments and rock carvings to sprawling ruined cities and a 5AD king’s palace in the clouds. That said, the beaches are pretty special too. From the airport all the way down to the south, there are sandy shores aplenty where you can sip from fresh coconuts in the shade of wind whispering palms. And for a refreshingly cool climate and ‘head in the clouds’ moment, head to the Hill Country, which is dotted with tea plantations, colonial villages and winding roads.

Road trip
With flights now to the south of the island, as well as to Colombo on the west coast, it’s never been easier or quicker to touch down in this land of plenty. Yes, the roads are still somewhat basic, bumpy and rather winding – and it will take you three or four times longer to reach your destination than you think – but treat the journey as part of the holiday rather than a means to an end. Buy freshly picked cashew nuts and baked rotis from street sellers, dodge roaming goats and cows, play I Spy for cotton trees, and simply admire the natural beauty as you pass by.

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