Duration : 7 DAYS/6 NIGHTS
Period/Dates : 01-NOV-19 TO 30-MAR-20
AIRPORT – VEYANGODA
Meet and assist on arrival at Airport by Aitken Spence Travels Representative & proceed to Veyangoda Overnight Stay at The Covanro Hotel
VEYANGODA – ANURADHAPURA – MIHINTALE – ANURADHAPURA
After breakfast leave for Anuradhapura
Commanding a rich Sri Lankan heritage, Anuradhapura – one of the greatest and oldest civilizations in the world starring 113 kings & spanning over 1300 years in its peak – avows of being the greatest city of ancient Sri Lanka following its reign as the first capital. The sapphire of its crown is certainly the Sri Maha Bodhi – the sacred Bo sapling extracted from the tree under which Lord Buddha attained enlightenment – standing more than 2200 years in its pride. Stroll through the sacred trails of the venerated city to adore the legacy that interweaves Ruwanweliseya – the gigantic dagoba resting alongside the Basawakkulama Tank – shading the Samadhi Buddha Statue & Isurumuniya Rock Temple that empower the culture, heritage and supremacy of arguably the strongest kingdom in Sri Lankan history.
Lunch at a Local Restaurant
Thereafter leave for Mihintale
Just 16km off the sacred city of Anuradhapura lies the cradle of Buddhism in Sri Lanka as the stone carvings and unending stairways proclaim a legacy which hinges the philosophy sermoned by Buddha – ‘The Awakened One’. This is the holy land which sheltered the first Buddhist sermon by Arahath Mahinda to King Devanampiya Thissa, when the Poson full
moon brightened a forest used by the king himself for hunting. Walk passing a massive cooling fountain and head towards the renowned staircase of the temple. Feel the coolness of granite slabs as you shift from the ruins of a hospital to Kantaka Stupa built in 1st century B.C. enriched with magical hands of the Sri Lankan stone carver. Step into the courtyard and towards its left sitting calm, is the refractory. However, the highlights of the sacred land are Maha Seya – the main dagoba – and Aradana Gala, the peak of the rock assuring breathtaking viewpoints of the Kingdom of Lakes, Anuradhapura.
Dinner and Overnight Stay at Hotel Alakamanda
ANURADHAPURA – AUKANA – POLONNARUWA – DAMBULLA
After breakfast leave for Aukana Standing up to a solid 40 feet over Anuradhapura the Aukana Buddha Statue – a creation of king Datusena – happens to be one of the foremost cultural & religious attractions in Sri Lanka spearheading fantastic proof of carvings that date back to the 5th century. The standing Buddha statue chiseled out of a granite cliff with magnificently carved pleats of a robe worn over the left shoulder truly proves not only a subtle talent of a local stone mason, but also a masterpiece of a king who is still venerated by locals. Lunch at a Local Restaurant
Thereafter proceed to Polonnaruwa
Rising with the decline of Anuradhapura, the city of Polonnaruwa – medieval capital & crown jewel of King Parakramabahu I – remains superior proof of ancient culture & heritage blended with religious beliefs. Walk across its scattered walls of the World Heritage Site – blessed by stupas, resting Buddha statues, irrigation canals and fantastically carved Hindu sculptures – while observing the relic house – Watadage – which boasts of beautiful stone carvings. Take a close glance and you will realize a subtle Hindu influence on architecture and statues found in Polonnaruwa. Or sit by the side of Galviharaya and observe the absolute beauty gushing out of every bend of its huge Buddhist statues. Nissankamalla Council Chamber is however, a head-spinning beauty to just sit back and observe with its swaying pillars reminding the aesthetics of a powerful kingdom which rests beside Parakrama Samudraya – sea of Parakramabahu & masterpiece of irrigation!
Dinner and Overnight Stay at Pelwehera Village
DAMBULLA – MATALE – KANDY
After breakfast visit Dambulla Temple
In the city of Dambulla lies a hub which has been treasured by many kings since the 1st century B.C. Today, an icon in the face of Sri Lanka, Dambulla Rock Temple houses some of the most unique drawings in magnificently constructed 5 cave temples flanking the golden temple of Dambulla. Observe how exquisitely cave paintings are done along walls that shelter 150 statues of Lord Buddha. As you enter the retreat, look straight up to the gigantic Buddha statue glittering in gold over a land, which today houses an important junction in the country’s economic and cultural uplifting.
Proceed to Kandy. En route visit a Spice Garden & Alu Viharaya Temple in Matale
An agricultural zone in the Central Province, Matale seldom drops off the maps due to its remarkable contribution through flagship crops of the island extending from tea, rubber & vegetables to spices. Spearheading the Rebellion back in 1848, Matale today takes immense pride in its story woven around spices. Stop by the side of a spice garden – into which you will be most welcome – and observe the therapeutic values of spices & processes over a refreshing cup of herbal tea!
Lunch at a Local Restaurant
City tour of Kandy
Last ruled by King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe – before it was brought under the British rule in 1815, Kandy – the World Heritage Site & last royal capital of Sri Lankan kings – crafts an array of culture, history and heritage in the minds of visitors across the globe. Experience an ancient Kandyan legacy engraved around its crown jewel, the temple of the sacred tooth relic of Lord Buddha. A stroll across this small lakeside town – cradled among the misty hills – will feature the Kandy City Centre – bundled with latest and world class brands, bazaar, an arts & crafts centre, as well as a gem museum & lapidary.walk in color as you glide through fresh fruits and vegetables in the Kandy market. Fine tube your evening by stepping to the beat of traditional music & drumming amplified by a cultural show enhancing the rich and vibrant culture of the Wonder of Asia, Sri Lanka.
Visit Kandy Temple of Tooth Relic and witness a Cultural Show in the evening
Dinner and Overnight Stay at Oak Ray Regency
KANDY – WASKADUWA
After breakfast leave for Waskaduwa En route, lunch at a Local Restaurant Evening stays at leisure Dinner and Overnight Stay at Coco Royal Beach Resort
WASKADUWA – PAHIYANGALA – COLOMBO – KELANIYA – COLOMBO
After breakfast visit Pahiyangala Cave & Rock Temple
Later, leave for Colombo
Lunch at a Local Restaurant
Drive along the clean streets edging the crystal white Race Course – horse racing hub in 1893 & World War II airstrip – furnished today with lavish clothing, food & tea boutiques. Head along Bauddhaloka Mawatha towards ‘Arcade’ facing a historic waypost, the Independence Square. Every designer boutique, top-notch cuisine outlet and even the ‘walk-over fish tank’, have revamped this colonial masterpiece into one of the trendiest shopping and hangout zones in Sri Lanka. Smell the scent of incense while listening to the chiming bells of Gangarama temple. Or, jazz up to Colombo’s night life spiced by night clubs & casinos that borderline its bustle. If you’re lucky, head into an exhibition at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) before swaying your head to an opera or play at Nelum Pokuna that should just drive your day into perfection!
Visit Kelaniya Temple
Kelaniya draws an illustrious significance towards the country along the channels of both, culture and religion. Blended with an absolute importance following the visit of Lord Buddha to Sri Lanka, the Kelaniya temple thrives today drawing thousands of heads from all corners of the world. Built during the 3rd century B.C. today, Kelaniya lights up the entire city with its annual pageant ‘Duruthu Maha Perahera’ held in the months of January studded with fire dancers, majestic elephants and drummers that add to the glory of the religious and cultural fortress.
Dinner at a Local Restaurant Overnight Stay at Zmax, Colombo
COLOMBO – AIRPORT
Breakfast at the hotel Thereafter leave for Airport for the Departure