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Sri Lanka's oceanfront national parks, mangroves, swamps and tropical rainforests have given rise to the amazing range of animals and birds that inhabit its borders. Visit Yala National Park, home to the highest density of leopards in the world, trek through Udawattakele Nature Reserve to hidden forest monasteries and cave dwellings and spot endangered birds in the tropical undergrowth of Sinharaja Rainforest as you journey through the richest wildlife regions of this island nation.
Depart London on your overnight flight to Colombo.
On arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel with the rest of the day free before your welcome dinner.
Depart for Wilpattu with a stop at Anawilundawa, where the ocean, mangroves and lakes which meet attract flocks of birds.
Enjoy a full-day safari at Wilpattu National Park and the chance to spot Sri Lankan leopards and other wildlife. Enjoy a barbeque dinner in Wilpattu.
Depart for Kandy, stopping to see the Dambulla Rock Temple and have lunch in Matale. Take a short tour of Kandy, with a visit to the Temple of the Tooth.
Head to Udawattakele Nature Reserve for a forest trek, with the chance to spot deer, boar and monkeys. Return to your hotel for the afternoon at leisure.
Explore the spectacular botanical gardens of Peradeniya, then travel to Nuwara Eliya, stopping for a tea plantation tour. In Nuwara Eliya, take a short hike and scenic drive past rolling valleys and cascading waterfalls.
Trek the evergreen forests of Horton Plains, a 1.5-3-hour walk that takes you past thundering waterfalls, sheer cliffs and herds of wildlife. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure at your hotel back in Nuwara Eliya.
Journey to Lunugamwehera National Park for an afternoon jeep safari where you can observe the elephants, water buffalo and wild boar that inhabit the reserve. Continue on to Yala for the night.
In the early morning, travel by jeep through the oceanfront reserve of Yala National Park, home to the highest density of leopards in the world. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure, with the option to visit Kataragama Temple.
Witness an elephant feeding at the Elephant Transit Home, a rehabilitation centre for abandoned elephants, then go on a jeep safari in Udawalawe National Park.
Travel to Sinharaja Rainforest, where you can enjoy the tropical setting on this afternoon's nature trail.
Explore Sinharaja on another trail. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure or take an optional rainforest excursion.
Journey to the coastal town of Mirissa and enjoy an afternoon at leisure at your beachfront resort.
Enjoy Mirissa with the morning at leisure or take a seasonal whale watching excursion (at a fee). Today marks the end of the tour for those staying on for a beach extension, otherwise, transfer to Wattala.
Transfer to Colombo for your return flight to the UK.
A visa is required for entry into Sri Lanka. We work closely with The Travel Visa Company who will be able to arrange your visa for you on your behalf. Please call them on 01270 250 590 and quote "Mercury Holidays". The cost of the visa is from £39. The visas take around 10 working days to issue and are only valid for 3 months from the date of issue. Therefore, we recommend that you apply for your visa 8 weeks before travel, however, please be aware that your passport will be required for the application so make sure that you will not need it during this time. Alternatively, you can visit The High Commission of Sri Lanka at 13 Hyde Park Gardens, London, W2 2LU.
Please note: If you have chosen to add the 'Kerala Beach Stay' or 'Highlights of Kerala' extension to the end of your tour, you will need to obtain an Indian visa prior to your UK departure. The Travel Visa Company offers a service which takes can take up to 15 working days at busy times. The cost is approximately £72. Alternatively, you can apply for your own visa. You can apply in person or by post to the Indian Embassy in London: 142-148 Goswell Road, London, EC1V 7DU. There are also regional centres elsewhere in the UK. Full details on the process can be found on the Indian Embassy website www.in.vfsglobal.co.uk.
If booking more than 10 weeks before departure a deposit of £250pp will need to be paid at the time of booking with the full amount payable at 10 weeks prior to departure. The deposit applies to adults and children. If you are within 10 weeks of travel then the full balance of the holiday will be payable.
Your flight is to Indira Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo with Sri Lankan Airlines (UL) departing from London Heathrow Terminal 3. Each passenger is entitled to 23kg of hold luggage plus one item of hand luggage providing the exterior dimensions (height length width) do not exceed 115cm and 7kg in weight. Weight restrictions will be finalised on your e-ticket receipt. Should you wish to take additional luggage you will need to pay extra at check-in. Heathrow Airport advises that check-in should be three hours before your flight departure time. If you wish to arrange Airport car parking or accommodation at preferential rates, we recommend you book this in advance with Holiday Extras on 0871 360 2000, quoting HX313.
It is your responsibility to check any health and vaccination requirements applicable to your booked arrangements. We can only provide general information about this. Health and hygiene facilities and disease risks vary from country to country. You should take health advice about your own needs as early as possible and in sufficient time before your departure. Sources of information include; www.fco.gov.uk, www.travelhealthpro.org.uk, www.hpa.org.uk, your General Practitioner or a specialist clinic. It is not advisable to drink the tap water.
This tour is accessible to most people with a good level of fitness and able mobility. It involves walking trails and treks, climbing steep stairs and getting on and off coaches.
The minimum number of travellers in your group will be 10. If in the unlikely event there are less than 10 people booked on your tour date, we will endeavour to reduce any disruption to your holiday and try to operate your tour with lower passenger numbers. If we are not able to operate your departure date then you may be asked to change to a different date and a full refund will be made available to you should this alternative not be suitable.
This is a fully escorted tour, meaning that you will be met on arrival by your national guide who will remain with you for the duration of your trip. You will also be joined by a local guide in each of the cities which you visit, ensuring that you have first-hand knowledge at all times.
The currency in Sri Lanka is the Rupee or Rs. The Rupee is a closed currency and officially you are not allowed to take any cash out of Sri Lanka. US Dollars and GBP are also widely accepted in Sri Lanka should you wish to keep an alternative currency on you.
You will need to take some extra money with you to cover any personal purchases, such as souvenirs, laundry and extra drinks and snacks. Approximately £400 per person will be sufficient for the duration of the tour. Tipping is customary in Sri Lanka. Should you wish to tip, this will be collected by your guide at the end of your tour for your convenience. We would recommend approximately £3-5 per person, per day for the driver and guide and £4 per person, per day for the national guides. It is asked that if you do not tip in the local currency, please do not give coins as these are difficult to exchange.
|Depart UK||Arrive UK||Price|
|05 Jun 2018||20 Jun 2018||£1799|
|04 Sep 2018||19 Sep 2018||£1969|
|18 Sep 2018||03 Oct 2018||£2019|
|16 Oct 2018||31 Oct 2018||£2139|
|06 Nov 2018||21 Nov 2018||£2229|
|20 Nov 2018||05 Dec 2018||£2319|
|15 Jan 2019||30 Jan 2019||£2289|
|29 Jan 2019||13 Feb 2019||£2319|
|19 Feb 2019||06 Mar 2019||£2339|
|05 Mar 2019||20 Mar 2019||£2299|
|16 Apr 2019||01 May 2019||£2299|
|07 May 2019||22 May 2019||£1899|
|04 Jun 2019||19 Jun 2019||£1799|
|03 Sep 2019||18 Sep 2019||£1979|
|17 Sep 2019||02 Oct 2019||£2029|
|15 Oct 2019||30 Oct 2019||£2139|
|05 Nov 2019||20 Nov 2019||£2239|
|19 Nov 2019||04 Dec 2019||£2349|
The order of events and sightseeing may vary according to local conditions or for operational purposes. Your local guide will inform you of any schedule changes as they are informed of them. Some road construction and/or weather conditions may lengthen the driving times. Our intention is to adhere to the day-to-day itinerary as printed; however, the order of events and sightseeing may vary according to local conditions.
Please note that Yala National Park may close during September and October. If this does occur, you will visit the nearby Lunugamwehera National Park instead.
Please note that on 16/10/2018, 06/11/2018 and 20/11/2018 this tour's itinerary will be reversed. The Sri Lankan beach stay extension will also start on day 15 on these dates.
Extend your stay with an extension to the wonderful beach resort of Kalutara on the north west coast of the country. Indulge in a calming massage or relax by the beach before returning to the UK.
Extend your tour with a relaxing beach stay in the Indian State of Kerala. Relax in the popular resort of Kovalam, known locally as the paradise of the south, amongst the coconut groves for which the town is famous.
Why not continue your trip beyond Sri Lanka with a mini tour of the beautiful Indian state of Kerala from 399pp. This 4 night extension includes a tour of Cochin, one of India's major ports and trading centres and an overnight trip on an authentic Keralan Houseboat.
Indulge yourself with a fabulous extension to the Maldives. Arriving at Male airport you will be transferred to your hotel by speed boat for four nights of pure bliss. Enjoy spectacular views of the bluest seas from all directions whilst you unwind and relax on this island of paradise.
Experience the marble memorials, gilded domes and elegant minarets of India's lavish Mughal-era architecture as you explore the ancient palaces and forts of the north.
Travelling from Delhi to Agra, then Jaipur, this 10-day, 8-night tour of the Golden Triangle and the exotic Ranthambore National Park takes you through India's most famous sights.
Characterised by winding emerald rivers, exotic wildlife, spice plantations and lush landscapes, the south Indian state of Kerala exudes tranquillity and beauty.