Work some of Sri Lanka’s best 2 bedroom family rooms to your advantage in this budget conscious 14 night tour. Family rooms can work out significantly cheaper than booking a separate double and twin room, while still affording both parents and children some privacy (bar a shared bathroom).
Without being too obscure, this itinerary also benefits from taking families away from the well trodden tourist path to some of the most beautiful spots in Sri Lanka. Watch elephants swim in Gal Oya National Park from within your own canoe, visit a truly ‘local’ tea factory in the hill country and learn to surf on the south coast’s prettiest horseshoe bay.
Land at Colombo International Airport and meet your private driver. Your driver will transfer you to Horathapola which is just over 1 hours from the airport. Here you can spend the afternoon by the pool or exploring the extensive coconut planation by bike or on the resident bullock cart.
You will stay in the 2 bedroom Family Lodge on a half board basis.
After breakfast your driver will collect you from the hotel and drive you up into the hill country. Stop in Kandy to visit the Temple of the Tooth, Royal Botanical Gardens and Commonwealth Cemetery, before driving the last 1hr 20mins to Rangala House.
Surrounded by tea fields with stunning views you will spend three nights here in their family studio on a bed & breakfast basis. This room is not strictly 2 bedrooms, but rather has a mezzanine level for the children.
There is plenty to keep you busy while at Rangala House. There is a truly ‘local’ tea factory nearby where the only tourists they see are from Rangala House. There are some wonderful walking trails and harder treks through the Knuckles Mountain Range. There is golf and horse riding at The Victoria Golf course. Or simply enjoy the hotel’s swimming pool and perhaps learn to make a Sri Lankan curry with the household staff.
From Rangala House you will drive east to Gal Oya National Park. Gal Oya is one of Sri Lanka’s lesser known parks and as such a very special location. There are no crowds, you can explore the park by jeep or boat and the area is still home to members of the native Vhedda tribe.
You will stay in a 2 bedroom villa at Gal Oya Eco Lodge on a bed & breakfast basis.
Gal Oya offer a vast list of activities. Some are free of charge such as participation in their animal monitoring programme, an early morning trek to the top of Monkey Mountain and bird watching walks. Then for a small additional charge you can do a safari with a picnic lunch in the national park, enjoy a cookery demonstration, visit a local farm house for lunch or take a discovery walk with the local Vhedda chief.
From Gal Oya you have a 3 hour drive to the beautiful hill station of Ella. Set amongst misty mountain peaks, with views of the Ella Gap and walks to lovely local waterfalls, this is a great place to spend a couple of nights and unwind.
You may decide to spend this day relaxing in Ella. There are lots of lovely walks in the local area and some hippy cafes down in the village. Alternatively you may take the opportunity to travel along the scenic railway to the old colonial town of Nuwara Eliya. The train leaves Ella in the late morning and takes just under 3 hours. You arrive in time for afternoon tea, before driving 1hr 20 minutes back to Ella.
Enjoy your last five nights in Sri Lanka relaxing on the south coast. Dine and shop inside the 16th Century UNESCO Galle Fort, photograph the iconic stilt fishermen, learn to surf in Weligama Bay, visit a local turtle hatchery and enjoy the string of pretty bays that run from Thalpe to Dickwella.
You will stay at Tisara Villas in one of their 2 bedroom pavilions on a bed & breakfast basis. Just a few minutes inland from a handful of lovely beaches the hotel’s lush gardens are home to an abundance of bird life and other animals.