12 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

12 days in Sri Lanka Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Sri Lanka travel route builder

Make it your trip
Fly to Colombo, Taxi to Anuradhapura
1
Anuradhapura
— 5 nights
Drive
2
Trincomalee
— 1 night
Drive
3
Polonnaruwa
— 1 night
Drive
4
Kandy
— 1 night
Fly
5
Galle
— 3 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
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Anuradhapura

— 5 nights
Explore the well-preserved ruins of an ancient Sri Lankan civilization and its former capital at Anuradhapura, a World Heritage Site and erstwhile center of Theravada Buddhism set amidst peaceful green parks.
Take a break from the city and head to Golden Temple of Dambulla and Eth Pokuna. Explore hidden gems such as Isurumuniya Temple and Twin Baths (Kuttam Pokuna). Step out of Anuradhapura to go to Habarana and see Dhilip De Alwis, which is approximately 1h 5 min away. Next up on the itinerary: don't miss a visit to Jethawanaramaya Dagoba, take in the spiritual surroundings of Dagoba of Thuparama, explore the ancient world of Ranmasu Uyana, and take an unorthodox tour of Sakwala Chakraya (Star Gate).

For reviews, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Anuradhapura road trip site.

Hyderabad, India to Anuradhapura is an approximately 8.5-hour combination of flight and taxi. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Tue) so you can go by car to Trincomalee.

Things to do in Anuradhapura

Historic Sites · Parks · Nature · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 1 — 6:

Trincomalee

— 1 night
A center of Tamil culture and language, Trincomalee suffered greatly during the 30-year civil war, but the troubles haven't dimmed the natural and cultural charms of the place.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Wed): see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour, kick back and relax at Nilaveli Beach, and then take in the spiritual surroundings of Sri Pathrakali Amman Temple.

For more things to do, where to stay, photos, and tourist information, read our Trincomalee journey site.

Getting from Anuradhapura to Trincomalee by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a train. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Wed) so you can drive to Polonnaruwa.

Things to do in Trincomalee

Outdoors · Wildlife · Tours · Parks

Side Trip

Find places to stay Apr 6 — 7:

Polonnaruwa

— 1 night
Lying 216 km (134 mi) from Colombo, Polonnaruwa offers a rich history second in Sri Lanka only to Arunadhapura.
Kick off your visit on the 8th (Thu): get to know the fascinating history of Polonnaruwa, steep yourself in history at Gal Potha, appreciate the history behind Polonnaruwa Vatadage, contemplate the long history of Sathmahal Prasada, then steep yourself in history at Lankathilaka Image House, and finally take an in-depth tour of Archaeological Museum.

For traveler tips, photos, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Polonnaruwa day trip planner.

You can drive from Trincomalee to Polonnaruwa in 2.5 hours. Another option is to take a train. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Thu) so you can drive to Kandy.

Things to do in Polonnaruwa

Historic Sites · Museums
Find places to stay Apr 7 — 8:

Kandy

— 1 night
Nestled between mountains in inland Sri Lanka, Kandy proudly bears its World Heritage Site designation while remaining culturally independent and colorfully picturesque.
On the 9th (Fri), examine the collection at World Buddhist Museum and then stroll the grounds of Kandy War Cemetery.

To find traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Kandy road trip website.

You can drive from Polonnaruwa to Kandy in 3.5 hours. Another option is to do a combination of train and bus. On the 9th (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Galle.

Things to do in Kandy

Museums · Historic Sites
Find places to stay Apr 8 — 9:

Galle

— 3 nights
The southernmost city on the island, Galle combines colonial-era history with a tropical feel and climate.
Start off your visit on the 10th (Sat): steep yourself in history at Galle Fort, then browse the exhibits of Tsunami Photo Museum, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Sea Turtle Farm Galle Mahamodara. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: enjoy the sand and surf at Mirissa Beach.

To find ratings, maps, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Galle travel route planner.

Traveling by flight from Kandy to Galle takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. In April, plan for daily highs up to 39°C, and evening lows to 30°C. On the 12th (Mon), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly back home.

Things to do in Galle

Parks · Historic Sites · Beaches · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Apr 9 — 12:

Sri Lanka travel guide

4.2
Sacred & Religious Sites · Beaches · Nature & Parks
India's Teardrop
Shaped like a teardrop and located just below the southern tip of India, lush Sri Lanka boasts some of the greatest biodiversity in the world. Unless you time your Sri Lanka holiday for monsoon season, you can expect bright blue skies and plenty of sunshine, perfect for exploring tropical forests, historic temples, colonial forts, and many other buildings dating back to Dutch rule. Popular things to do in Sri Lanka include swimming, sailing, and surfing, though a growing number of visitors come here just to eat their way around the country. Greatly influenced by nearby India, the national cuisine also features many elements of European cooking--a result of the Dutch and Portuguese colonial years. Of course, a trip to Sri Lanka would not be complete without a cup of its world-famous Ceylon tea.