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TOURS

10 Nights / 11 Days Program - Ancient Lanka

PINNAWALA - HABARANA -ANURADHAPURA - POLONNARUWA - SIGIRIYA - DAMBULLA - KANDY - NUWARAELIYA -HORTON PLAINS - BANDARAWELA -YALA -GALLE - NEGOMBO

Day 1 - AIR PORT - PINNAWALA -HABARANA

Morning arrival to Sri Lanka, Windmill Tours chauffeur/ guide will meet you at the airport, and drive you to Habarana/Dambulla in the North Central plains of Sri Lanka, paying a visit to the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage en route. Providing a caring home for abandoned and wounded elephants, it is a much loved destination for tourists and locals alike. Here, adults and baby elephants from around Sri Lanka thrive, and a captive breeding program is also proving to be highly successful. The feeding and bathing times are generally the ideal times to visit when you can observe these gentle giants at their best.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT DAMBULLA


Day 2 - HABARANA -ANURADAPURA

After breakfast leave to Anuradhapura. En route visit Aukana Buddha Statue Our ancient sculptures in stone in the form of Buddha statues, sluices, guard stones , pillars and other such artifacts are over 2000 years old. Among the largest such standing Buddha statues is this famed Aukana Buddha statue lying amidst Raja Rata - the cradle of our ancient civilization. It is carved out of a rock boulder and lies close to the serene Kala Weva tank built by King Dhatusena of the 5th century AD.This Aukana Buddha statue is 46-feet high, resting on a fine lotus stone pedestal. The symbolic gesture carved on the statue, called Mudra is in the form of Ashiva Mudra which signifies giving or blessing.

Thereafter proceed to Anuradhapura and proceed city tour at Anuradhapura.

It was the first capital and undoubtedly the grandest city of the ancient Ceylon. Two of the World Heritage Sites are situated here and many places of historical and archaeological interest could be visited. Sri Maha Bodhi (Sacred Bo-Tree) was brought as a sampling of the tree under which Prince Siddhartha attained to enlightenment. It is over 2200 years old and is the oldest historically documented tree in the world. The Brazen Palace (2nd century B.C), the 1600 stone columns you see are all that is left of a magnificent multi-storied residence for monks. Ruwanweliseya (2nd century B.C) is the most famous of all the Dagobas. It originally depicted the perfect 'bubble shape" that modern restoration has not been able to accurately reproduce. 'Samadhi' Buddha statue (4th century AD) is one of the most famous statues, depicting the Buddha in a state of 'Samadhi' or deep meditation and Isurumuniya rock temple (3rd century B.C) which is well known for its rock carvings.

Transfer to Mihintale..Mihintale is where Buddhism was first introduced to Sri Lanka. Mihintale is regarded as the cradle of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. The rock is riddled with shrines and rock dwellings. A grand stairway of 1,840 steps made out of granite slabs of 15' wide leads to the summit from where one could get a splendid view of the surrounding countryside.

Thereafter transfer to Habarana and OVER NIGHT STAY AT HABARANA


Day 3 - HBARANA - POLONNARUWA

Morning,After breakfast visit Medirigiriya his site situated in a beautiful surrounding has a history going in to the pre-Christian times. The brami characters found on the bricks and the some of the stone carvings is an indication of the long history of this site. The first reference to this site in the chronicles is during the king Kanittha Tissa (192-194) of the Anuradhapura Era. Later many kings have contributed to this complex and finally after the invasion of Maga this site too was abandoned When the Sinhalese migrated to the southern parts unable to withstand the torture.

Thereafter Proceed to Polonnaruwa. Do city tour around Polonnaruwa which is a world heritage site and the 2nd capital city of Sri Lanka built in the 11th and 12th centuries AD. See the ruins of the Royal Palace, the Gal Viharaya where four splendid statues of the Buddha in 'Upright', 'Sedentary' and 'Recumbent' postures carved out of rock, the Audience Hall, the Lotus Bath, the statue of king Parakramabahu, and the Parakrama Samudraya - a lake built by King Parakramabahu the great. There are also monuments of famous places of worship such as the Shiva Temple, the Lankathilake, the Watadage, the Galpotha, the Kiri Vehera and the remains of a former Temple of the Tooth Relic.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT DAMBULLA


Day 4 - DABULLA - SIGIRIYA - KANDY

Morning,After breakfast climb Sigiriya Rock

Sigiriya Rock Fortress which is a world heritage site, built by King Kashyapa (477-495 AD). The 'Lion Rock' is a citadel of unusual beauty rising 200 metres from the scrub jungle. The rock was the innermost stronghold of the 70 hectare fortified town. A moat, rampart, and extensive gardens including the renowned water gardens ring the base of the rock. Visit the world-renowned frescoes of the 'Heavenly Maidens' of Sigiriya, which are in a sheltered pocket of the rock approached by a spiral stairway. These frescoes are painted on plaster using earth pigments.

Thereafter proceed to Dambulla Visit Dambulla rock temple which has been built by king Walagambahu in the 1st century B.C. It is a World Heritage Site. It is the most impressive of Sri Lanka"s cave temples. The complex of five caves with over 2000 sq. metres of painted walls and ceilings, is the largest area of paintings found in the world. It contains over 150 images of the Buddha of which the largest is the colossal figure of the Buddha carved out of rock and spanning 14 metres.

En route visit Ayurveda herbal garden in Matale and experience the demonstration of different spices.

Evening do Kandy City tour!!

OVER NIGHT STAY AT KANDY


Day 5 - KANDY

After breakfast proceed to Botanical Gardens Peradeniya. Botanical gardens was first built as a pleasure garden by a Sinhala king and was expanded by the British. It is 147 acres in extent and provides an amazing variety of trees, plants and flowers.

There do City tour Kandy with visit Gem museum and see the different precious stones are making.

Evening visit Kandy the Temple of the Tooth Relic in Kandy.

Visit the famous Temple of the tooth or popularly known as the "Dalada Maligawa" TEMPLE OF THE TOOTH RELIC - The famous Dalada Maligawa or the Temple of the sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy is the most venerated place of worship for Buddhists throughout the world. Built in the 16th century, this temple houses the Sacred Tooth Relic of the Lord Buddha, brought to Sri Lanka from the Kalinga province in ancient India in the 4th century AD. Several buildings have been added to the temple complex by successive rulers, the latest being the Golden Canopy over the inner shrine where the Tooth Relic is placed. Originally the Temple was within the King's palace complex as it was the symbol of Royal Authority.

Thereafter witness a cultural show.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT KANDY


Day 6 - KANDY - NUWARA ELIYA

After breakfast proceed to Nuwara Eliya. On route visit Tea Factory & Plantation. Nuwara Eliya, because of its invigorating mountain climate and scenery, is Sri Lanka's most popular hill resort. Nuwara Eliya is also the heart of Sri Lanka's tea country producing a significant share of the world's best tea. Sri Lanka's highest mountain Pidurutalagala (8282 feet) is located here. One of the finest 18 hole golf courses in South Asia is also situated in Nuwara Eliya.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT NUWARA ELIYA


Day 7 - NUWARA ELIYA - HAPUTHALE - BANDARAWELA

After breakfast visit Horton Plains, which is located on a high windswept saddle at about 2134 meters above the sea level. The plains are an expanse of misty grassland with scraggy trees and ice-cold rivulets. Visit the World's End considered to be the finest view in all of Sri Lanka. The awesome escarpment drops vertically for about 4,000 feet, hence its name. You can also see the beautiful Backer's falls. (walk is about 14 km). The park shelters mammals such as Sambhur, Leopard and endemic Bear & Monkeys. This area is the home for over 20 endemic bird species including Sri Lanka's Whistling Thrush, Orange-billed Babbler and Yellow-eared Bulbul.

Thereafter take the Breathtaking view of Train from NanuOya to Haputale.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT BANDARAWELA


Day 8 - BANDARAWELA - ELLA - YALA - TISSA

After breakfast proceed to Yalla. On route See the Water Fall Ella The falls have been named after the legendary king Ravana, which is connected to the famous Indian epic, the Ramayana. According to legend, it is said that Ravana (who was the king of Sri Lanka at the time) had kidnapped princess Sita, and had hidden her in the caves behind this waterfall, now simply known as the Ravana Ella Cave. The reason for the kidnapping is said to be a revenge for slicing off the nose of his sister by Rama (husband of Sita) and his brother Laxmana. At the time, the cave was surrounded with thick forests in the midst of wilderness. It is also believed that Rama's queen bathed in a pool that accumulated the water falling from this waterfall. They believed that Ravana has played the Ravanahatha over here.

Also on route visit Buduruwagala Temple.

Buduruwagala is an ancient Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka. The complex consists of seven statues and belongs to the Mahayana school of thought. The statues date back to the 10th century. The gigantic Buddha statue still bears traces of its original stuccoes robe and a long streak of orange suggests it was once brightly painted. The central of the three figures to the Buddha's right is thought to be the Buddhist mythological figure-the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara. To the left of this white painted figure is a female figure in the thrice-bent posture, which is thought to be his consort-Tara.

Evening do Safari in Yala National Park by Jeep. Yala is the largest National Park in Sri Lanka which is the home for wild elephants, wild boars, wild buffaloes, leopards, bears, deers and crocodiles. Large flocks of migratory and indigenous birds are also found here.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT TISSA


Day 9 - TISSA - GALLE

After breakfast proceed to beach hotel. On-route visit Mulkirigala Temple The Rock of Mulkirigala rises about 676 feet from the surrounding land mass. There are seven cave temples situated in five Terraced areas of different altitudes. They are the Lower Terrace (Patha Maluwa), Bo Tree Terrace (Bodhi Maluwa). Great King's Temple Terrace ( Raja Maha Vihara Maluwa), Upper Bo Tree Terrace (Uda Bodhi Maluwa) and Chetiya Terrace (Chaitya Maluwa). These terraces can be accessed comfortably through well paved granite paths and steps going right up to the Dagoba Terrace.

Thereafter proceed to Galle. On route stop & see . The Wewurukannala Vihara temple where there is one of the most amazing Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka. The Wewurukannala Vihara temple is dominated by an image of a seated Buddha. It is 160ft high, the largest statue in all of Sri Lanka and dates back to the time of King Rajadhi (1782 - 1798).The temple has three parts, the oldest being about 250 years old.

Also Visit Galle Fort Galle was once the chief port of Ceylon. It is still well known for hand-made lace. Visit the Galle Fort (spanning 90 acres) which has been originally built by the Portuguese and later extended by the Dutch in 1663. This is a World Heritage Site.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT GALLE


Day 10 - GALLE - NEGOMBO

Morning, After breakfast leave for an excursion to the Heritage city of Galle. For centuries Galle has stood strong against invasions - from colonial powers and nature's volatile outbursts. The famous Dutch Fort was first built by the Portuguese, fortified by the Dutch and preserved by the British. Battered daily for over 400 years by the ocean it even survived the onslaught of a tsunami and is enjoyed today by residents and visitors alike. The colonial architecture of the walled city too has resisted the advance of modernity and holds tightly to its past glory.

Afternoon, Continue the journey along the west coast to Negombo , taking in the unique sight of Stilt Fishing along the shores of Ahangama. An iconic image of Sri Lanka, Stilt Fishing is a skill handed down from one generation to the next: an ancient tradition that is sadly on the decline. Further along the coast, you will visit the Turtle Hatchery at Kosgoda - a successful conservation effort established to protect Sri Lanka's turtles from extinction.

OVER NIGHT STAY AT GALLE


Day 11 - NEGOMBO - AIRPORT


After Breakfast proceed to the airport for the departure. Bon Voyage!!!

~~ END OF PROGRAM ~~


OUR SERVICES INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING:

o Welcome and assistance at the Colombo International Air Port.

o Service of an English Speaking Chauffeur Guide or your own language Guide.

o Accommodation on Double Room sharing on Bed & Breakfast Basis.

o All sightseeing tour and transfer services with private air conditioned.

o One 500 ml Mineral Water bottle per person per day.

o All local Taxes.


OUR SERVICES DO NOT INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING:

o All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the program.

o Services not mentioned in our itinerary.

o Visa fees.

o International flight tickets .

o Expenses of a personal nature laundry, telephone calls,etc.