Cultural Tour with Kandy Esala Perahera


days
10

from
1299*

Kandy Esala Perahera - August

The Esala Perahera in Kandy is one in all the oldest and grandest of all Buddhist festivals in Sri Lanka, which includes jugglers, musicians, fire-breathers, dancers and lavishly adorned elephants. This ritual is performed by carrying the sacred tooth relic of the lord Buddha through the streets of the Kandy town that is completed with exceptional panache.

  •  ITINERARY 
  • INCLUDES & EXCLUDES
  • OPTIONAL EXCURSIONS
  • TOUR EXTENSIONS

DAY 1 | AIRPORT - NEGOMBO

On Arrival at Colombo International airport you will be welcomed by our representative/Chauffer guide/National Guide. Upon completion of arrival formalities leave for your chosen hotel at Negombo. 

 

NEGOMBO

The primary resort town on the western coast of Sri Lanka, Negombo is highly sought after for its long stretches of golden, palm fringed beaches and the buzzing, cosmopolitan lifestyle of the town and of course, its close proximity to the airport at Katunayake. The economy of the town and the region is mainly based on tourism and its centuries-old fishing industry which continues to thrive today – making it a paradise for seafood lovers. Here, myriad cultures mix and exist freely. The town, which is predominantly Roman Catholic, is called “Little Rome” due to the highly ornate Portuguese-era Roman Catholic churches found within it. However, Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims too have significant landmarks of their own – often next to each other. Several buildings also date back to the Dutch and Portuguese colonial era, including an ancient Dutch Fort gate built in 1672 now a part of the prison and the Dutch Canal which was a supply route to the administration. The 100km long canal – still very much in use, runs through and a boat ride will offer a different perspective of the city.  The wide beaches and the gentle surf are ideal for water sports and a few well preserved coral reefs and a 50 year old shipwreck attracts divers too.

 

Overnight in Negombo;

 ü  Option 1: Goldi Sands Hotel - http://www.goldisands.com/  

DAY 2 | NEGOMBO

After breakfast you will check out of the hotel and travel to cultural triangle where you will witness the rich heritage of Sri Lanka.  

 

ANURADHAPURA

 The ancient capital of Anuradhapura reigned supreme for over a millennium as one of the greatest monastic cities of the ancient world famed for Buddhist culture and architectural achievements across Asia and Europe. Ruled by 113 successive kings and four queens, Anuradharpura was a majestic sprawl of magnificent palaces, ornate pleasure gardens, exquisite sculptures and vast Buddhist temples. The three main ‘dagabas’ are amongst the biggest architectural creations of the ancient world smaller in size only to the pyramids at Giza. The ancient rulers also created impressive feats of engineering, building great reservoirs to preserve the monsoon rains and irrigation systems to produce great harvests of paddy.  Anuradhapura was founded in 377 BC by the third king of the Vijaya dynasty, Pandukabhaya, and was much fought over. Abandoned in 1073 when the capital was transferred to Polonnaruwa, it was ‘reclaimed’ by the jungle and rediscovered by British explorers in the 19th Century. Today, the surviving ruins are still spectacular even after thousands of years, and the ‘sacred city’ of Anuradhapura remains on the ‘must visit’ list of locals and tourists alike.

 

Overnight in Anuradhapura;

  Option 1: Rajarata Hotel - http://www.rajaratahotel.lk/ 

DAY 3 | NEGOMBO

After breakfast you will check out of the hotel and travel to cultural triangle where you will witness the rich heritage of Sri Lanka.  

 

ANURADHAPURA

 The ancient capital of Anuradhapura reigned supreme for over a millennium as one of the greatest monastic cities of the ancient world famed for Buddhist culture and architectural achievements across Asia and Europe. Ruled by 113 successive kings and four queens, Anuradharpura was a majestic sprawl of magnificent palaces, ornate pleasure gardens, exquisite sculptures and vast Buddhist temples. The three main ‘dagabas’ are amongst the biggest architectural creations of the ancient world smaller in size only to the pyramids at Giza. The ancient rulers also created impressive feats of engineering, building great reservoirs to preserve the monsoon rains and irrigation systems to produce great harvests of paddy.  Anuradhapura was founded in 377 BC by the third king of the Vijaya dynasty, Pandukabhaya, and was much fought over. Abandoned in 1073 when the capital was transferred to Polonnaruwa, it was ‘reclaimed’ by the jungle and rediscovered by British explorers in the 19th Century. Today, the surviving ruins are still spectacular even after thousands of years, and the ‘sacred city’ of Anuradhapura remains on the ‘must visit’ list of locals and tourists alike.

 

Overnight in Anuradhapura;

  Option 1: Rajarata Hotel - http://www.rajaratahotel.lk/ 

DAY 4 | ANURADHAPURA - DAMBULLA

After breakfast you will experience a village tour. Hiriwadunna is a village in the Habarana area. It is a village where you can get a glimpse of the typical village life style away from the city life and how they live, what they do for a living, what they eat and how they prepare it, their homes and their neighborhood. The excursion begins with a 30 minute bullock cart ride through the village roads which are not carpeted and is not the smoothest ride. It goes through shrub jungle, vegetation, village homes…etc. Thereafter, trek through a paddy field for about 20 minutes and learn how the paddy is cultivated, harvested, stored and distributed which is the staple diet of the islanders. Then, take a traditional boat ride for about 20 minutes with a local fisherman and learn about their fishing techniques and their livelihood. Thereafter, visit a village home and see how they live and the style of accommodation. If you come at the right time, you can see the type of food they eat, how they prepare it and even partake in a meal using your fingers which are customary and the best way to enjoy it! (For those you prefer) Later in the afternoon head towards one of the major icons of Sri Lanka “The Sigiriya Rock Fortress”. 

 

SIGIRIYA ROCK FORTRESS

The ultimate icon of Sri Lanka’s historic past, the giant rock fortress of Sigiriya arises high above the flat landscape, surrounded by jungle on all sides. A testimony to the inventiveness of the ancient civilizations of the land, the once impenetrable stronghold of King Kassapa, ‘Sihagiri’ or Lion’s Rock as it was called then, is considered to be the 8th wonder of the world today. The feats of artistry, architecture and engineering at Sigiriya continue to impress visitors with their utter magnificence, even thousands of years on. Intricately landscaped pleasure gardens sprawl out below the rock, giant lion paws hewn in stone mark the entrance to the fortress at its foot, a highly polished mirror wall still carries the scrawled writings of ancient poets. A somewhat treacherous climb up the rock is well worth it to see the impressive ruins of a once glorious city at the summit – 370m high. And the 360 degree view from the top is equally astounding. Even more amazing are the exquisite frescoes painted on to the sheer rock face – their beauty still unmarred despite the trials of time and attempts at destruction. The village and its surrounding areas also offer plenty of interest both historical and natural for those willing to explore. Sigiriya- height- 200m (04hours trekking)

 

The ancient city of Polonnaruwa 216 km northeast of Colombo is a cornerstone of Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle. One of the most significant kingdoms in Sri Lankan history this medieval capital (11th - 12th Century AD) remains a well-preserved city of ancient stupas, moonstones, beautiful parks, massive buildings and imposing statues. The ruins of this ancient city stay scattered over an extensive area of woodland and can be explored within a day. The city was enclosed by three concentric protecting the royal palace complex at its centre, the  religious buildings - called Quadrangle, lie to the North and are very well preserved to this day. 

  

DAMBULLA

The largest and the best preserved cave monastery in the island, Dambulla is a sacred pilgrimage site for followers of Buddhism for no less than 22 centuries.  A cave complex comprising five sanctuaries, they were already established as important monasteries as far back as the 3rd century BC. At first, the caves were a refuge for King Valagambahu in 1st century BC. Returning from exile to his throne at Anuradhapura, he turned the caves into a magnificent temple for the monks who sheltered him. Protected and enhanced by successive kings it has continued to be a place of great religious significance up to today. The cave complex serves as one extended Buddhist image house. Its rock ceiling and interior walls are covered with intricate murals – an area of 2,100 sq meters with some of the frescos dating back over 2,000 years. The paintings depict Buddhist mythology, and tales of Buddha's previous births. This cave complex has the largest number of Buddha statues housed in one place including a reclining Buddha figure carved out of the rock, 14 meters long; and 157 equally impressive statues of Lord Buddha, ancient kings, gods and goddesses.

 

Overnight in Dambulla;

   Option 1: Elephas Resort - http://www.elephassigiriya.com/

DAY 5 | ANURADHAPURA

After breakfast you will experience a village tour. Hiriwadunna is a village in the Habarana area. It is a village where you can get a glimpse of the typical village life style away from the city life and how they live, what they do for a living, what they eat and how they prepare it, their homes and their neighborhoodThe excursion begins with a 30 minute bullock cart ride through the village roads which are not carpeted and is not the smoothest ride. It goes through shrub jungle, vegetation, village homes…etc. Thereafter, trek through a paddy field for about 20 minutes and learn how the paddy is cultivated, harvested, stored and distributed which is the staple diet of the islanders. Then, take a traditional boat ride for about 20 minutes with a local fisherman and learn about their fishing techniques and their livelihood. Thereafter, visit a village home and see how they live and the style of accommodation. If you come at the right time, you can see the type of food they eat, how they prepare it and even partake in a meal using your fingers which are customary and the best way to enjoy it! (For those you prefer) Later in the afternoon head towards one of the major icons of Sri Lanka “The Sigiriya Rock Fortress”. 

 

SIGIRIYA ROCK FORTRESS

The ultimate icon of Sri Lanka’s historic past, the giant rock fortress of Sigiriya arises high above the flat landscape, surrounded by jungle on all sides. A testimony to the inventiveness of the ancient civilizations of the land, the once impenetrable stronghold of King Kassapa, ‘Sihagiri’ or Lion’s Rock as it was called then, is considered to be the 8th wonder of the world today. The feats of artistry, architecture and engineering at Sigiriya continue to impress visitors with their utter magnificence, even thousands of years on. Intricately landscaped pleasure gardens sprawl out below the rock, giant lion paws hewn in stone mark the entrance to the fortress at its foot, a highly polished mirror wall still carries the scrawled writings of ancient poets. A somewhat treacherous climb up the rock is well worth it to see the impressive ruins of a once glorious city at the summit – 370m high. And the 360 degree view from the top is equally astounding. Even more amazing are the exquisite frescoes painted on to the sheer rock face – their beauty still unmarred despite the trials of time and attempts at destruction. The village and its surrounding areas also offer plenty of interest both historical and natural for those willing to explore. Sigiriya- height- 200m (04hours trekking)

 

The ancient city of Polonnaruwa 216 km northeast of Colombo is a cornerstone of Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle. One of the most significant kingdoms in Sri Lankan history this medieval capital (11th - 12th Century AD) remains a well-preserved city of ancient stupas, moonstones, beautiful parks, massive buildings and imposing statues. The ruins of this ancient city stay scattered over an extensive area of woodland and can be explored within a day. The city was enclosed by three concentric protecting the royal palace complex at its centre, the  religious buildings - called Quadrangle, lie to the North and are very well preserved to this day. 

 

 

DAMBULLA

 

The largest and the best preserved cave monastery in the island, Dambulla is a sacred pilgrimage site for followers of Buddhism for no less than 22 centuries.  A cave complex comprising five sanctuaries, they were already established as important monasteries as far back as the 3rd century BC. At first, the caves were a refuge for King Valagambahu in 1st century BC. Returning from exile to his throne at Anuradhapura, he turned the caves into a magnificent temple for the monks who sheltered him. Protected and enhanced by successive kings it has continued to be a place of great religious significance up to today. The cave complex serves as one extended Buddhist image house. Its rock ceiling and interior walls are covered with intricate murals – an area of 2,100 sq meters with some of the frescos dating back over 2,000 years. The paintings depict Buddhist mythology, and tales of Buddha's previous births. This cave complex has the largest number of Buddha statues housed in one place including a reclining Buddha figure carved out of the rock, 14 meters long; and 157 equally impressive statues of Lord Buddha, ancient kings, gods and goddesses.

 

  

 

Overnight in Dambulla;

 

  Option 1: Elephas Resort - http://www.elephassigiriya.com/

DAY 6 | ANURADHAPURA

After breakfast you will experience a village tour. Hiriwadunna is a village in the Habarana area. It is a village where you can get a glimpse of the typical village life style away from the city life and how they live, what they do for a living, what they eat and how they prepare it, their homes and their neighborhoodThe excursion begins with a 30 minute bullock cart ride through the village roads which are not carpeted and is not the smoothest ride. It goes through shrub jungle, vegetation, village homes…etc. Thereafter, trek through a paddy field for about 20 minutes and learn how the paddy is cultivated, harvested, stored and distributed which is the staple diet of the islanders. Then, take a traditional boat ride for about 20 minutes with a local fisherman and learn about their fishing techniques and their livelihood. Thereafter, visit a village home and see how they live and the style of accommodation. If you come at the right time, you can see the type of food they eat, how they prepare it and even partake in a meal using your fingers which are customary and the best way to enjoy it! (For those you prefer) Later in the afternoon head towards one of the major icons of Sri Lanka “The Sigiriya Rock Fortress”. 

 

SIGIRIYA ROCK FORTRESS

The ultimate icon of Sri Lanka’s historic past, the giant rock fortress of Sigiriya arises high above the flat landscape, surrounded by jungle on all sides. A testimony to the inventiveness of the ancient civilizations of the land, the once impenetrable stronghold of King Kassapa, ‘Sihagiri’ or Lion’s Rock as it was called then, is considered to be the 8th wonder of the world today. The feats of artistry, architecture and engineering at Sigiriya continue to impress visitors with their utter magnificence, even thousands of years on. Intricately landscaped pleasure gardens sprawl out below the rock, giant lion paws hewn in stone mark the entrance to the fortress at its foot, a highly polished mirror wall still carries the scrawled writings of ancient poets. A somewhat treacherous climb up the rock is well worth it to see the impressive ruins of a once glorious city at the summit – 370m high. And the 360 degree view from the top is equally astounding. Even more amazing are the exquisite frescoes painted on to the sheer rock face – their beauty still unmarred despite the trials of time and attempts at destruction. The village and its surrounding areas also offer plenty of interest both historical and natural for those willing to explore. Sigiriya- height- 200m (04hours trekking)

 

The ancient city of Polonnaruwa 216 km northeast of Colombo is a cornerstone of Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle. One of the most significant kingdoms in Sri Lankan history this medieval capital (11th - 12th Century AD) remains a well-preserved city of ancient stupas, moonstones, beautiful parks, massive buildings and imposing statues. The ruins of this ancient city stay scattered over an extensive area of woodland and can be explored within a day. The city was enclosed by three concentric protecting the royal palace complex at its centre, the  religious buildings - called Quadrangle, lie to the North and are very well preserved to this day. 

 

 

DAMBULLA

 

The largest and the best preserved cave monastery in the island, Dambulla is a sacred pilgrimage site for followers of Buddhism for no less than 22 centuries.  A cave complex comprising five sanctuaries, they were already established as important monasteries as far back as the 3rd century BC. At first, the caves were a refuge for King Valagambahu in 1st century BC. Returning from exile to his throne at Anuradhapura, he turned the caves into a magnificent temple for the monks who sheltered him. Protected and enhanced by successive kings it has continued to be a place of great religious significance up to today. The cave complex serves as one extended Buddhist image house. Its rock ceiling and interior walls are covered with intricate murals – an area of 2,100 sq meters with some of the frescos dating back over 2,000 years. The paintings depict Buddhist mythology, and tales of Buddha's previous births. This cave complex has the largest number of Buddha statues housed in one place including a reclining Buddha figure carved out of the rock, 14 meters long; and 157 equally impressive statues of Lord Buddha, ancient kings, gods and goddesses.

 

  

 

Overnight in Dambulla;

 

  Option 1: Elephas Resort - http://www.elephassigiriya.com/

DAY 7 | DAMBULLA

After an early breakfast, head up the mountains through lush greenery to the last capital of the ancient kingdoms in the island, Kandy, the 2nd largest city in the island. It is also one of the most sacred places of worship to the Buddhist around the world because the city contains the ‘Temple of the Tooth Relic.’ The city is declared as one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites which is also famous for abundant shopping, arts & crafts, museums, lapidaries and lots more.

 

KANDY

The cultural epicenter and the hill capital of the island, Kandy is Sri Lanka’s second city and home to the Temple of the Tooth - the country’s most important religious shrine, and the traditional pageant the Esala Perahera. Although modernity and urban sprawl has changed the face of this once quaint hill station, it still carries a regal atmosphere with graceful Kandyan style architecture mingling with colonial buildings set around a tranquil lake surrounded by green hills. The kingdom of Kandy was the last stronghold of the Sinhalese, clinging to its sovereignty long after the island had fallen to the Portuguese and Dutch and the English, preserving its own unique customs and culture until the very last. These traditions live on today in the city’s unique music, dance and architecture. For cultural attractions Kandy is overloaded with historic sites and there is much to explore. For the nature lover the Udawattekelle forest reserve is right at the heart of the city. One can literally walk from the hectic city centre to the quiet stillness of thick jungle in minutes.

 

Overnight stay in Kandy :

 ü  Option 1 :  Hotel Hill Top - http://www.aitkenspencehotels.com/hotelhilltop/

 

 *Special surcharge will be added during the Perahara period

 

DAY 8 | KANDY

After breakfast you will check out and travel to much scenic area. On your journey you will be able to witness a lot of tea plantations and mountains. 

 

NUWARA ELIYA

Hidden away high in the central mountains at an altitude of over 6000 feet, Nuwara Eliya is the resort capital of the hills – and a world away from the hot tropical beach atmosphere of the coast, not just in climate but in its character too.  The British planters who flocked to the region to grow tea in the mid-19th century developed Nuwara Eliya as their summer retreat. Created as an exact replica of an English town it is often called ‘Little England’; and with its primarily colonial architecture, the stately Victoria Park, golf course, racing track, boating lake and grand period style hotels – and the cold, frequent showers of rain adding to the illusion, you could well be in an old English country town. This is the heart of the tea country, and is also a good base for excursions to discover other attractions of the hills. Sri Lanka’s tallest mountain range ‘Pidurutalagala’ looms over the landscape, the surrounding forest is a treasure for nature lovers and the Hakgala Botanical Gardens close by is known for its roses and rare ferns.

  

Overnight stay in Nuwara Eliya :

 ü  Option 1 : Hotel Daffodills - http://daffodilshotel.com/  

DAY 9 | NUWARA ELIYA

Enjoy your breakfast and be prepared to experience a very scenic ride back home.  Our chauffer guide will transfer you to the Nanu Oya train station where you will start your journey in the comfort of the train. This is the best way to travel from Nuwara Eliya to Colombo where the view is amazing.  Upon your arrival at the Fort Railway Station you will be picked up and transferred to the hotel. 

 

COLOMBO

The commercial capital of Sri Lanka and the true hub of all activity in the island, Colombo is a buzzing hotpot of cosmopolitan life. In this throbbing city, a heady mix of cultures thrives. Here, contrasting landmarks - ancient sites, colonial masterpieces and ultra - modern skyscrapers sit side by side. Quaint old shops and wayside stalls lie under the shadows of glittering stores and sprawling shopping malls.  Similarly, lifestyles and traditions old and new continue, making Colombo a unique and exciting city. Its history dates far back: the port of Colombo was influential as early as the 5th century when ships from Rome, Arabia, and China traded with Sinhalese kings for food supplies, spices and jewels. The subsequent colonial powers also left their individual legacies – and the Portuguese, Dutch and English influence remains very much to date.

 

Overnight stay in Colombo :

 ü  Option 1 : Mirage Hotel -  http://www.miragecolombo.com/

DAY 10 | COLOMBO

As it is the day of departure you will check out from your hotel to catch your flight back.

  We ‘Thank you’ for selecting GETAWAY SRI LANKA as your ‘Trusted Travel Partner’ and wish you a safe journey back to your destination. We hope to see you soon to discover the rest of our beautiful island. 

PRICE INCLUDES: - 09Nights & 10 Days accommodation in the hotels & room categories specified in the itinerary. In case of Non availability, similar hotels or higher room categories will be offered. - Meals on Bed & Breakfast basis. - Transport in an Air-Conditioned Luxury Van with an English speaking Licensed Chauffeur Guide including Airport Pick-up and Airport-drop. - Passenger Insurance. - Rail Tickets (Nanu Oya to Colombo) - All government taxes and service charges. PRICE EXCLUDES: - Any other meal other than what is mentioned under inclusions. - International Airfare, Airport Taxes, Visa. - Travel Insurance other than during transport during the tour. - Early Check-In and Late Check-out unless specified in PRICE INCLUDES. - Tips or fees of any kind. - Items of personal nature like drinks, laundry, telephone calls, tips, etc. - Lunch and any other meal that is not mentioned in the itinerary. - Any other item/meal/sites not specifically mentioned in above ‘PRICE INCLUDES’.

IMPORTANT

  • STANDARD CHECK-IN TIME AT HOTEL : 02.00 PM
  • STANDARD CHECK-OUT TIME AT HOTEL : 12.00 PM

Terms & Conditions :

  • Rates and fares are subject to change without prior notice
  • Hotels and airlines herein mentioned are subject to availability at the time of booking
  • Prices above are calculated based on the lowest available airfare and current applicable taxes
  • Rates are subject to availability and change at the time of booking
  • Rates are subject to change in case of any changes in hotel taxes, ROE (rate of exchange), transport rates, government taxes & entrance fees
  • Rates are based on current ROE and the same will be applicable at the time of hotels and/or airline confirmation which is also subject to change/availability at the time of making the reservation
  • The hotel would require a security deposit for incidentals by cash/credit card at the time of check-in
  • No amendments/refunds are possible once land arrangements (hotels, tours, transfers etc.)/airline tickets have been confirmed

The above rates are quoted inclusive of all applicable taxes at the time of the quotation. Any revision to the Air fares, Hotel rates, taxes and conversion rates will be notified and charged accordingly prior to making any reservations.

Confirmation :

50% non-refundable payment on confirmation, balance to be settled on delivery of the tickets and hotel vouchers

Confirming reservations are strictly subject to availability at the time of the booking

Cancellation Policy :

There will be no refunds made once the tickets are issued and paid for the tour package

For more optional excursions, Please contact your travel adviser: 03 8788 5152 or mail : info@gotravelclub.com.au

For more tour extentions, Please contact your travel adviser: 03 8788 5152 or mail : info@gotravelclub.com.au

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