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Keilor18 Mar 16th, 2017 04:40 PM

Sri Lanka for 13 nights -need advice
Hi All, I had originally posted that we would only spend 9 nights in Sri Lanka but what we have decided to do is spend 13 nights there this July. We had also planned Myanmar but decided we really couldn't fit it all in. There will be 8 of us traveling in one van.

Here is an outline:

Negombo -1 night

Kandy -4 nights (here is my question -can we make Kandy our base and take day trips to places around Hill Country/Tea Trails?

Trincomalee -3 nights

Dambulla -4 nights

Colombo -1 night

Does this all make sense in terms of getting around the country? Too much driving and being in the van.

Thanks for your help and advice!


Kathie Mar 16th, 2017 04:59 PM

Kandy is not a realistic base to visit tea country.

No matter what you do in Sri Lanka, you will do a lot of riding in the van. As much as I prefer staying in fewer places, I think if you want to see tea country, you will need to divide the time you have allotted to Kandy.

Are you working with a local agent in Sri Lanka? If not, I recommend that you do. They can be very helpful with drive times. For instance, your first day drive from Negombo to Kandy is very long.

Keilor18 Mar 16th, 2017 05:12 PM

hi Kathie, I have been working with Boutique Sri Lanka based on your recommendation here. With BSL, I have only arranged Negombo, Trincomalee, Dambulla and Colombo so we are adding an extra 4 nights and wondering how to see these places before we reach Trincomalee.

So 2 nights in Tea Country first then 2 nights in Kandy then onto the other areas?

And what is the town to stay that is considered Tea Country? Ella?

Keilor18 Mar 16th, 2017 05:21 PM

Never mind, just did a google search about distances. I will contact BSL and see what they come up with. Too long a drive from Negombo to Ella -maybe best to drive to Kandy (for 2 nights) then Ella (for 2 nights).

CaliforniaLady Mar 16th, 2017 05:51 PM

I am going to Sri Lanka in September, and, if you click on my name, you can see my planning thread. I have a couple of comments that may help you:

1. I started out working with BSL, and they quoted me $890 for nine days of driving, with a small car. I contacted three other agencies, and they are quoting about half that. I suggest you get a second,itemized quote before you commit to BSL.

2. I would ask your agency specifically how long the driving distances are from point A to point B, and from point B to point C, etc. The google map times are incorrect--they are way too low. That way, you can see if your itinerary makes sense.

Mohammed Mar 16th, 2017 10:44 PM


I would suggest you divide your time in the hill country to two locations to be decided as per your specific interests. Are you interested in stuff like white water rafting, trekking or just want to soak in the atmosphere of the tea country?

Suggest as follows

1 night Negombo (avoid if possible depending on flight arrival times)

2 nights Nuwara Eliya

2 Nights (Kandy or Knuckles)

4 nights Dambulla ( Habarana may be better)

3 Nights Trincomalee (which month are you coming Trinco is good from April - August)

1 Night Colombo (avoid if possible)

What are your priority interests? Culture/History/Ruins, Tea Country, Trekking and Adventure, beach, wildlife??

CounterClifton Mar 21st, 2017 03:16 PM

<i>Kandy is not a realistic base to visit tea country.</i>

I agree with this. "Tea country" is more of a region than a place to pop off for the day. Beautiful area though. We stayed several nights in a rural area between Nawalapitiya and Ginigathhena. The train ride from there on the Nuwara Eliya was one of the most beautiful I've seen anywhere. For me, the area is all about peace and quiety and getting some walks in.

Kandy is nice, worth seeing but not that much seems reachable from it for day trips. I'd agree with Mohammad that 2 nights is probably enough for most people.

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