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Travelling with 3 yr old; please comment on 10 day itinerary

Travelling with 3 yr old; please comment on 10 day itinerary

Sep 21st, 2014, 09:30 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 110
Travelling with 3 yr old; please comment on 10 day itinerary

Hello,

We are planning a 10 day trip to Sri Lanka this November. I have been reading other fodorites' itinerary and trip reports and here is the rough plan for us:
- Day 1: fly to colombo, stay overnight at an airport hotel
- Day 2-4: next morning, drive to sigriya and stay there for 3 nights. Make that as the base to explore dambulla, sigriya and polonnaruwa.
- Day 5: drive to Yala National Park. Stay overnight
- Day 6: half day safari, then leave for Tangalle
- Day 7: R & R
- Day 8 - 9: Drive to Galle. Explore Galle
- Day 10: fly back to delhi

Few questions -
1. Is Kandy worth a detour? If we decide to go there, should we first go to Kandy from colombo en route to sigiriya? Or explore sigiriya and surrounding areas and see Kandy on the way to Yala?
2. It seems that taxis are the best option to move around within the country. We are staying at good properties in all the 4 places. Would it be better to organise transport from these properties? Or should we contact a travel agency for a taxi / driver? Would they then charge for all 10 days?

Many thanks.
shwets is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2014, 10:51 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 7,521
It is far easier to get an agency to arrange accommodation and transport and, given your intended itinerary I would suggest arranging for the tour to end in Tangalle. From their it is easy enough to get a taxi to gale and again from Galle to the airport (a long drive!) Boutique Sri Lanka and REDDOT are the best known agencies. We used reddot and had a few problems but met others who were pleased with them. whichever you use do not expect prompt replies! they will usually be able to source accommodation t a lower cost and charge for the driver and car per day with around 200km per day included which should be enough.

we didn't make it to Yala as it was all booked up so i can't comment except to say that it seems a very long way to go for a half day safari.

i would include Kandy. its a fascinating place and i am sure your 3 year old would enjoy a side trip to the elephant orphanage nearby.
crellston is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2014, 11:48 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 32,988
Fewer places, less moving around will help your three-year old be happier. I'd cut Yala and go to the beach from the cultural triangle.

As crellston says, it makes sense to have an agency arrange a car and driver for you. You'll need a driver the whole time you are in the cultural triangle - you can't see any of the world heritage sites without a car and driver. While the hotels can arrange a taxi for you, I expect it will all go more smoothly with a car and driver.

We used Boutique Sri Lanka and thought they were excellent. They may be able to get better prices on the places you want to stay as well. We stayed at the Kandalama near Dambulla - a lovely place.

I don't know if there are now any airport hotels (there were not when we were there), but most people spend the night in Negombo which is close by.
Kathie is offline  
Sep 26th, 2014, 12:56 AM
  #4  
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 110
Thanks for your responses.

1. I have noted the long drive to Yala just for a 1/2 day safari, so will make it 2 days there. My daughter enjoys animals and she will like the safari part. We are already doing 5 nights at beach places.
So the 11 night tentative itinerary now is:
- Day 1: fly to colombo, stay overnight at an airport hotel
- Day 2-4: next morning, drive to sigriya and stay there for 3 nights. Make that as the base to explore dambulla, sigriya and polonnaruwa.
- Day 5: drive to Yala National Park. Stay overnight
- Day 6: safari, overnight at Yala
- Day 7: Leave for Tangalle
- Day 8: R & R at Tangalle
- Day 9 - 11: Drive to Galle. Explore Galle
- Day 11: fly back to delhi

2. I will contact Boutique Sri Lanka for a car / driver trip starting from international airport till tangalle. Thanks for that tip.

3. Still not sure how to include Kandy, will check with Boutique Sri Lanka. One way ofcourse is to do Kandy instead of Yala.

4. Kathie - i noted from your trip report that you went to SL 7 years back. The recent reviews on Kandalama suggest that while the building is at a beautiful location and an architectural delight, the place is now a bit run down. I am thinking of Jetwings instead to explore the cultural triangle.
shwets is offline  
Sep 26th, 2014, 12:59 AM
  #5  
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 110
Kathie, we are figuring if we have enough miles to stay at the Taj Gateway hotel on colombo - negombo road for the first night.
shwets is offline  
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