Some of the wildlife that can be spotted on a Sri Lanka holiday...
The teardrop island is particularly proud of its natural bounty, and rightly so. For thousands of years, vast swathes of land have been protected by Sri Lankan royalty, preserved as sanctuaries for nature to thrive and even today, countless areas of protected land exist on the island. Despite its small size, its diverse landscapes, contrasting seasons, unique climate and incredible biodiversity confirm it as an exceptional place for wildlife enthusiasts to enjoy year-round.
Whether you’re a culture vulture keen to explore the impressive temples and UNESCO sites of the Cultural Triangle, a wildlife fanatic who hopes to spot the elusive leopard in Yala National Park, or a fervent foodie whose mouth waters at the tantalizing aromas of cardamom and coriander, here's our pick of the top Sri Lankan experiences that are not to be missed...
Here’s a guide to our favourite local street-food delicacies to sample during your stay…
Mirissa is the gateway to Dondra Point. This is one of the best spots to witness the whale migrations in Sri Lanka from the Bay of Bengal - Sri Lanka’s southern sea is calm offering up the perfect conditions.
On a recent trip to Sri Lanka, Ellis was bowled over by this unique and calm country which is worlds apart from nearby India. From the fascinating culture of the north, to the scenic rolling hills of Tea Country and the beautiful golden beaches on the coast, there is no end to the country's beauty.
In Sri Lanka, festivals are an integral part of life and culture; with a population composed of many races and religions and given its long, ancient history – they are never short of celebrations. Here are a few of the significant festivals:
Tea is part of Sri Lanka’s unique cultural heritage and some of the world’s finest teas are produced here. Due to Sri Lanka’s diverse climate each tea variety is uniquely different. The country is particularly famous for Ceylon tea, recognised over the world for its high quality and distinct aroma (crisp and citrus).
The best of Sri Lanka and The Maldives in this luxurious journey that takes in Sri Lanka's ancient cities and tea plantations before flying off to one of the finest islands in The Maldives. It combines culture with some of the world's finest beaches.
Spotting the Big Five in Africa is often hailed as the holy grail of wildlife holidays, but plenty of other places around the world offer animal sightings impressive enough to rival Africa's, and Sri Lanka is certainly one of them. Here, we introduce you to Sri Lanka's own Big Five and give you all the information you need to go in search of these wild beasts...
Here’s a guide to our favourite things to do in Galle…
Passikudah, Sri Lanka
Best for: Beach, Culture History, Family
Uga Bay Resort is a 5 star, luxury hotel located on Passekudah bay, and exudes tropical-paradise charm. Untouched by tourism, the bay provides a serene beach getaway, and those in the know come here to get away and unwind.
To start planning your tailor-made holiday, call us on (646) 934-8916
With a fusion of tropical and Mediterranean architecture, it is a stunning hotel in a beautiful bay. Its design ensures all 46 studios, suites and villas have that perfect ocean view. Rooms range from the Bay Suite, with two bedrooms, separate living area and a private plunge pool, to the Beach Studio, with private beach access and terrace, to the Beach Villa, a romantic two story villa on the beachfront with beach access through a private luscious oasis. All suites and rooms come complete with a private terrace, tea and coffee, mini bar and safe.
Unwind around the spectacular infinity pool which blends with the sea creating a truly unforgettable sun-bathing spot. Enjoy sumptuous local produce and fresh seafood in the restaurant or private dining options, serving traditional Sri Lankan and Asian cuisine for you to immerse yourself in the culture. Rejuvenate in the underground spa complete with ocean vistas for you to relish your massage in style or take your treatment outside and choose the poolside cabana, with yoga and meditation options available on request, Uga Bay will not disappoint.
With a pristine beach of white sands and turquoise waters, guests can enjoy pure relaxation. If you fancy something a little more adventurous, take part in the available water sports, borrow a bicycle to explore the surrounding areas of Baticaloa, and local markets. Or if you fancy a bit of history and culture visit the ancient city of Polannaruwa to discover the ancient ruins.
When to go
Sri Lanka is considered a sunny year round destination; there is always somewhere experiencing good weather on the island. However, there are huge regional differences. The Southwest ‘Yala’ Monsoons brings rain to the west and southwest coast, as well as the hill country, from April/May to September. During this time the north and east coasts are good. The northeast ‘Mahe’ monsoon is less extreme and brings rain to the east and north during October and November. This monsoon can bring a bit of rain to the south as well. Put simply; head to the south, central, hill country and western areas between December and March and ideally head to the north and eastern areas between April and September. We can never guarantee good weather but believe this is a good guide to follow.
To start planning your tailor-made holiday, call us on (646) 934-8916
Things to do
Explore the immaculately preserved remnants of Buddhism’s second city. Polonnaruwa is grouped in clumps between enticing forests so that you can walk and cycle your way around giant Buddhas and impressive temples that are over 1,000 years old.
Uga Bay - Sea Kayaking
This thrilling sea kayaking experiences is a popular choice from Uga Bay’s selection of ocean adventures. Take out two kayaks, which can fit 4 people, for an unforgettable group experience.
Dambulla Rock Cave Temple
The rich history of the huge rock temples involves Indian invaders being driven away through the strength of meditation in the first century BC. Its just as exciting today as you are guided through five intricately carved caves past giant stone statues.
Uga Bay - Ideas for your free time
Uga Bay offers lots of fun activities for guests of all ages, which can be easily arranged. Track leopards in Wilpattu, tour the countryside on a bike, or try your hand at cooking. Enjoy a whale watching trip and explore the ancient city of Polonnaruwa.
Boat safari in Gal Oya Park
Enjoy a morning boat safari followed by a lovely picnic in the Gal Oya Park. This is a unique opportunity to observe the local wildlife from the stunning Gal Oya Lake.
Mask Making in Balapitya
Learn to craft your own mask in Balapitya using traditional tools at the workshop in Ambalangoda, supervised by an experienced master craftsman.
Uga Bay - Snorkeling and Diving
With kaleidoscopic marine life and miles of coral reefs and ancient shipwrecks, the ocean off Passikudah’s coast is an underwater adventure playground for snorkelers and divers alike.
Uga Bay - Sailing Trips
Uga Bay’s sailing trips are ideal for those wanting to explore the ocean on Passikudah’s coast. Enjoy a thrilling trip out on the water that lasts for a minimum of 90 minutes.
Holiday ideas including a stay in this property
Kotugoda, Anamaduwa, Pallepolla, Passikudah, Gal Oya National Park, Kandy
Designed with teenage families in mind, this adventurous and active journey explores Sri Lanka's wilder side, perfect for energetic teens looking for something unique. With time on the stunning east coast, this trip is perfect during the summer holidays.
Kotugoda, Cultural Triangle, Pasikuda, Kandy
Brilliantly diverse and blessed with an epic beauty, Sri Lanka is a great destination for a family holiday. This small island offers a remarkable range of experiences ideal for children of most ages and this itinerary really packs them in.
Colombo, Kotugoda, Pallepolla, Kandy, Gal Oya National Park, Passikudah, Sigiriya
Without compromising on comfort get off-the-beaten track and experience the unseen side of Sri Lanka. Secluded accommodation, ancient cities, incredible wildlife and pristine beaches allow for a completely unique experience.