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Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka

This island nation is one of the gems of the Indian Ocean, and a perennial favourite with backpackers and more adventurous holidaymakers. In this tropical paradise you’ll find sweeping palm-fringed beaches, historic forts, and dense jungles that are teeming with diverse wildlife.

Book a trip and travel to Sri Lanka with Qatar Airways Holidays, and discover the delights of the teardrop-shaped island, from surfing adventures in Ahangama and yoga retreats in the rainforest, to exploring the ancient Buddhist temples and ruins in Kandy, or walking along the huge bastions that surround the coastal town of Galle.

Sri Lanka Destinations

Sri Lanka Holiday Packages

Soak up the fresh sea air and stunning natural vistas with one of the many travel packages from Qatar Airways Holidays. Sri Lanka tour packages will take you to ancient archaeological sites and soaring temples, or along winding trails through verdant jungles where you’ll get close to local wildlife.

Plus, get a great price on rooms in beach-front resorts or luxury hotels in Sri Lanka, and sit back and relax with the holiday of a lifetime.

Sri Lanka FAQ (Frequently asked questions)

When is the best time to travel to Sri Lanka for a holiday?

If you’re hoping to get to grips with Sri Lanka’s dense jungles or lush valleys, then it will depend on where in Sri Lanka you go, and when. To the south, the months between December and April offer the best weather, just before the start of the monsoon season. To the north, the months between May and September offer temperatures between 22°C and 31°C. You’ll generally get high humidity all year round, but pre-monsoon season it’s not quite so hot and humid. It’s similar for those looking to enjoy a beach break. Between December and March, the temperatures on the south and western coasts reach around 33°C, with little chance of rain. For those heading east, July and August offer similarly balmy conditions.

Where is the best place to visit in Sri Lanka for a holiday?

To see the country’s wildlife at its best, the Yala National Park is home to almost 6,000 elephant and more than 40 leopards. Seeing them in the wild, alongside the likes of buffalo and sloth bears, is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. To fully immerse yourself in Sri Lanka’s elegant past, head to the Matale District of Dambulla, which is one of the central parts of the country. There, you’ll find the Cave Temples of Dambulla; a network of five subterranean temples lined with more than 150 statues and decorated with around 21,000 square metres of beautiful and intricate murals. However, if sun, sea and sand are more your cup of Jade Butterfly (tea), then take a trip to Wijaya Beach. There, you can scuba-dive along coral reefs, top up your tan and even spot passing turtles.

Latest travel advice for holidays in Sri Lanka

While the Sri Lankans are renowned for their warm welcomes, there are a few things worth knowing to ensure you make the most of your holiday. If you want to get around under your own steam, you’ll need an International Driver’s Permit or an International Driving Licence to rent a car. However, a better mode of transport (especially around town) is the tuk-tuk. Make sure you agree on the fee first before you set off. Perhaps the best way to see the country is by train. Much safer than driving and less busy than buses, Sri Lanka’s trains are a great way to get from A to B. Your credit or debit card will help you out with purchases in high-end restaurants, hotels and shops. However, if you’re in a market or a small town, you will need to have some cash on you as not everywhere will accept cards. Take care of your purse or wallets when visiting crowded areas, as pickpockets are common.

Sri Lanka: amazing facts and reasons to visit

Don’t confuse nods and shakes – In Sri Lanka, nodding indicates that you disagree with something, while shaking your head shows you agree.

Cinnamon from Sri Lanka – Sri Lanka provides around 90% of the world’s supplies of cinnamon.

Independence Day – If you want to see how Sri Lankans celebrate, book your break for February. The country achieved independence on 4th February 1948 and marks this event with huge carnival parades, fireworks, live music, delicious street food, and sports events.

Which are the best places to visit in Sri Lanka?

The Cultural Triangle is easily one of the best places to visit. Here, you’ll find some of Sri Lanka’s most popular cultural and natural attractions, such as the impressive ruins of Polonnaruwa, Lion Rock, and the Dambulla Cave Temples. However, if you want to combine metropolitan life with a dash of culture, head to the city of Kandy. While there are plenty of shops and restaurants, Kandy is full of cultural attractions such as the Temple of the Sacred Tooth, the Royal Botanical Gardens, and the beautiful Kandy Lake.

What are the best tour packages in Sri Lanka?

The OZO Colombo, in Sri Lanka’s capital, is ideal for those who want to immerse themselves in city life by day and leave it behind them when the hustle and bustle becomes a bit too much. Overlooking the Indian Ocean, it’s a short walk to the city centre. However, if you’d prefer a family beach break, check out the Hotel Riu Sri Lanka. Set on a pristine beach in Ahungalla, younger visitors won’t be short of things to do, with dedicated kids pools and a kids’ club onsite. For a romantic, luxury break, it doesn’t get much better than the Antara Peace Haven Tangulla Resort. Located on the south coast, the hotel is surrounded by a coconut plantation and is within easy reach of some superb cultural attractions. The hotel boasts a fully-equipped spa, where you can relax completely by indulging in a range of wellness treatments.

Why go on holiday to Sri Lanka with Qatar Airways Holidays?

Sri Lanka is a country of surprises, offering exotic beaches, emerald mountain ranges, sleek cities, authentic villages, together with spectacular sites of cultural interest. Thrown in national parks teeming with flora and fauna and you’ve got everything you need for an unforgettable holiday.

When you decide to book a package holiday to Sri Lanka with Qatar Airways Holidays, you can be sure that we’ll leave no detail overlooked and take care of everything from hotels and flights to transfers and car rentals. All that’s left for you to do is relax and explore the delights of the ‘Pearl of the Ocean’.

Good to know

Time Zone

GMT+5:30 hours

Languages

Sinhala, English, Tamil

Dialing Code

+94

Electricity

230V, 50Hz

Currency

Sri Lankan rupee

Sri Lanka Experiences

  • Located south of India, Sri Lanka is a country with a complex and fascinating heritage that dates back 3,000 years. This island is home to some of the oldest cities in the world, yet embraces the 21st century with open arms.
  • Explore the ancient ruins of Anuradhapura where palaces once stood tall, and walk past crumbled monasteries and sites that continue to attract Buddhists from all over the world. Then make your way back to the modern day with a trip to the island's capital Colombo, where you'll find ultra-modern hotels and malls sitting peacefully alongside the city's more ancient monuments.
  • Breath-taking natural landscapes blanket the island from north to south. Golden sandy beaches back onto lush jungles, and the turquoise sea is perfect for snorkeling, paddle boarding, and swimming. Deep in the UNESCO-listed Sinharaja Forest Reserve, you’ll find a myriad of animals, birds, and reptiles under the canopy trees and waterfalls, and in Yala National Park, open grasslands and lagoons are home to flamingos, elephants, leopards, and colourful butterflies.
  • For adventure lovers, there are many places to hike and climb, such as the Knuckles Mountain range in central Sri Lanka. You can go zip lining over the Kelani River or white-water rafting in rapids in Kitulgala. Surfing spots are abundant in Hikkaduwa and Unawatuna, or you can watch humpback and blue whales in the waters off Mirissa.
  • The capital port city of Colombo is a must-see with colonial architecture and old quarters blending with luxury hotels and exclusive restaurants. In fact, the city is a great place to enjoy a culinary experience in Sri Lanka thanks to the Pettah spice market and seafood restaurants on Mount Lavinia Beach.

Sri Lanka Travel Guides

Top weekend breaks