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40 Best Places to Visit in Sri Lanka

 
  • Relive the past at Sigiriya or 'Lion Rock', an ancient palace in the town in Dambulla with a renowned architectural style consisting of artistic frescoes, captivating mirror walls and massive gardens of the boulder, water, and terrace. The Golden Temple or the Dambulla Cave Temple is yet another attraction in these parts and it is virtuous, owing to its high level of preservation. In the town of Kandy lies the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic believed to be that of Lord Buddha. This site maintains its sanctity despite the throngs of visitors it gets every season. There are also rituals performed here thrice daily. The Elephant Orphanage located in the Pinnawala village will wow you as you watch more than 80 elephants being bathed, fed and protected. If you're looking to make a quick getaway from the big cities, a trip to Horton Plains National Park will do you good. Here is the confluence of three rivers - Mahaweli, Kelani, and Walawe, making it a stunning sight from the summit, Adam's Peak. 


    Here are some of the best places to visit in Sri Lanka:

  • 01Visit Casino

    Image Credit :  Miss Shari

    A visitor’s delight, Colombo is a place of many beautiful tourist attractions. When you are here, do not miss to visit the casinos of the place. These are perfect joints to keep you entertained with their world-class interiors and customised services. The four most attractive casinos in Colombo are Bally’s, Bellagio, MGM Colombo and Marina Colombo. Bally’s is located right in the heart of the city, Bellagio on the main Duplication Road, the highly-sought after MGM, in close vicinity to Majestic City Shopping Mall and Marina, a high-profile casino on the Marine Drive.


    Image Credits : Thomas Hawk



    Timings: The joints are opened 24/7 on all days of the week.

    Price: Approximate price starts from just LKR 100 onwards at joints like Bally’s. That’s not all! You get to taste some awesome dishes as well, while you try your luck at these places.

  • 02National Museum

    Image Credit : rapidtravelchai
    If you are a history lover and have a keen eye for architecture, the National Museum is probably one of the first few places that you need to visit, when you come to Colombo. Established during 1877, this is the biggest museum in the island nation and is undoubtedly the pride of Sri Lanka. The place houses some of the best and personalised collections of the ancient Kandyan dynasty rulers.

    Image Credits : calamur



    Location:
     The museum built in Italian architecture style, is located right in the heart of the Colombo city. 

    Highlights:
     The museum’s library deserves special mention as it contains rich manuscripts in palm leaves in languages like Burmese, Sinhala, Telugu, Tamil and much more. 

    Timings:
    The museum is open on all days except national holidays from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

    Price:  Approximate price for local adults and kids are 35 LKR and 20 LKR respectively, whereas, for foreign adults and kids, the prices are 600 LKR and 300 LKR respectively.
  • 03Colombo Tea and Herb Tour

    Sri Lanka is known for its exclusive varieties of tea. The capital city of Colombo is covered with a green carpet of tea plantations that demands a separate tour in itself. The aroma of tea and herbs in these estates lend an incredible magic to this place. And for the tea lovers, this is like a heaven where you will get to taste after manufacturing directly from the factory.



    Location: Starts from the Bogawantalawa valley and other plantations that range at 1500m above sea level. 

    Highlights:
     You not only get to witness the process of manufacturing tea in the factories here, but you also get to taste the different brands of tea. Sounds interesting, isn’t it? You will find tea of different kinds of price ranges here and you will get to know the minute differences among each variety. 

    Timings:
    These tours are available all through the year from leading tour operators. 

    Price: Approximate prices starts from 5700 LKR and can vary based on the processes covered in the tour.
  • 04Bentota

    Image Credit : Rajarshi MITRA
    An extraordinary experience amidst an ordinary setup lies 65 kilometres from Colombo and is named Bentota beach. Soak yourself in the ordinary golden sand while enjoying the marvellous sound of the mighty Indian Ocean crashing against the shores. The mesmerizing view of the sea will leave you speechless. If you are planning to break the monotony of the routine just try your hands at adventure sports found alongside the palm trees.

    Image Credits : Rajarshi MITRA



    Highlights: You can visit Kasgoda Turtle Hatchery and also go on a boat cruise on the Bentota River.

    Getting there: Bentota is very well  connected with the cities and is very easily accessible. You can ride from Galle or you can take a ride from Colombo. 
    Bentota is approximately 101km south of the airport from Colombo
  • 05Arugam Bay

    Image Credit : Alessandro Longhi - Flickr
    Welcome surfers! 320 km away from Colombo Arugam Bay is waiting for you to unveil your adventurous side. An ideal place to be when you want to break free from being just mundane. The bay will definitely fill in some adrenaline rush making you feel all charged up for the biggest challenges of life.  The most popular surfing break is ‘Main Point’ which is towards the south of the bay. This adventure spot is well complemented with a relaxing atmosphere. Although one might not find many inhabitants in and around the place as it was once victimised by Tsunami which caused a lot of damage to the bay.



    Highlights:
    Although, it’s quite ironic to its name but a visit to the Tsunami hotel is a must which serves some of the best rice and curries. If you are a nature lover you can also check out the nearby Kumana National Park which will be equally exciting.

    Getting There: The easiest way to reach the Arugam Bay is to take a can from the airport.

  • 06Explore The Temple of The Truth

    Image Credit : Hafiz Issadeen
    Nestled close to the Udawattakele Sanctuary, The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic is one of the most important shrines of Sri Lanka. Also named as Dalada Maligawa, this temple is based in the royal palace of the Kingdom of Kandy. Housing the legendary Budda tooth, the temple is a World Heritage site though very little are the remnants of the original temple built around 1600. Amazing ornamentation with golden fence and extravagant Canadian architecture makes it a blissful sight for the visitors. Dedicated monks unanimously chant the prayers of Malwatte and Aegirine , three times every day, during dawn, noontime and evening at the inner temple. Every Wednesday a holy symbolic bath of the Relic is done is fragrant water and that water is distributed among the visitors known to have healing powers.

    Image Credits : 4Neus



    Location: Royal Palace, Kandy

    Time: 5:30 AM to 8:00 PM

    Price: Approximate price starts from 1000 LKR  to 2134 LKR
  • 07Ceylon Tea Museum

    Image Credit : Dave Lonsdale
    Located at Hantane, the 1925 vintage Ceylon Tea Museum is one of the important attractions of the hill country, Kandy in Sri Lanka. The Tea Museum is a building of four floors where from ground floor to second floor it’s all old machineries, library and auditorium. For purchasing lip smacking variety and flavors of Sri Lankan tea one must visit the third floor which is sales unit. The fourth floor comprises of a magnificent restaurant where one can enjoy a free cup and the captivating and breathtaking surrounding view of the hill country from the top. One can visualize Matale Range and Kunckles Range through a telescope positioned here. From the top it’s an encircling view of green landscape comprising tea plantations of myriad types.

     Location: Hantane Road, Kandy



     Best Time: Tuesday – Sunday, 8:30am to 4: 30pm

    Price: 1070LKR for adults and 428LKR for child.(approx)
  • 08Sinharaja Forest Reserve

    Image Credit : Wikipedia

    Declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Sinharaja Forest Reserve (kingdom of the lion), is a paradise for nature and wildlife lovers. It is home to a vast number of endemic species of birds and mammals of Sri Lanka. About 95 percent of Sri Lankan endemic birds and more than 50 percent of endemic mammals are known to have their habitats in this Forest Reserve. Year round, the forest is covered by plenty of rain clouds. The area span of the reserve is about 21 KM from east-west and about 7 KM from north-south.

     

    Image Credits : Wikipedia

    Location: Situated in the Southern Province, a two-hour drive from Galle via Galle-Deniyaya-Madampe Highway.

    Highlights: Experience the leisurely pace of wildlife and the splendor of dense and copious evergreen rainforests. The guide will tell you about different endemic species of flora and fauna that you encounter during your guided tour.

    Timings: Opens daily from 6:30 AM to 6 PM

    Price: Approximate price ranges from 664 LKR to 1160 LKR

  • 09Pinnewala Elephant Orphanage

    Image Credit : Nigel Swales - Flickr
    Peradeniya Gardens is a spacious 147 acre of natural extravaganza consisting of more than 4000 species of plants, and 10,000 varied kinds of trees, incidentally serves as the largest garden of Sri Lanka. The unique and rarest collection in these gardens is the Giant Bamboo of Burma which grows 12 inches each day to a height of 40 meters. Apart from this other amazing collections include Javan fig tree, Cannonball tree, Double Coconut Palm and about 200 other varieties of palm trees and versatile collection of flora. 

    Image Credits : Nigel Wilson - Flickr



    Highlight:  
    One can pack some food to enjoy an open air picnic here or can relish the cafeteria inside serving local and western cuisine. The Peradeniya Botanical Garden is one prime tourist attraction of hill country and remains quite flooded with tourists every weekend. 

    Timings
    : Opened daily from 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM

    Price: Approximate price starts from 2353 LKR for adults and 1177LKR for child
  • 10International Buddhist Museum

    Located close to the Temple of the Tooth, inside the royal palace complex, The International Buddhist Museum is a complete knowledge base and a showcase of the spread of Buddhism throughout Asia. There are separate rooms dedicated to different countries illustrating Buddhism in that location. There are photographs, models and gigantic statues which portray the spread and influence of Buddhism on people in various places.



    Location
    : Close to Temple of Tooth, Kandy

    Highlights: 
    To get a better knowledge about the spread of Buddhism displayed here one can opt for a free audio guide which is available at the ticket counter or can opt for a tourist guide at 1070LKR who explains the whole location. Do wear covered clothes from shoulder to toe and remove the shoes. There’s an elevator in the Museum which allows disabled visitors to access the Museum. 

    Time
    : 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM

    Price: Approximate price starts from 1070 LKR per adult
  • 11Hike to Adam's Peak

    One of the natural landmarks is the summit of Adam’s Peak. A trek toward this colossal Adam’s peak can be very exhausting. Besides being just a natural landmark the place is also considered to be a sacred pilgrimage because of the curious depression which is found on the summit and is painted in gold people term this as Sri Pada or Sacred Footprint of Buddha. The trek starts from the far end of Dalhousie village and reaching the large standing Buddha. Trekking can be really exhausting especially when it is 5500 steps and do wear warm clothes as it is cold up there.



    Location: It is approximately 5 hours from the airport.

    Best time of visit: The Adam’s Peak should be made by night so that you reach them by dawn and the ideal month would be December and January.

  • 12Visit Polonnaruwa Sacred City

    Image Credit : Jonybraker - Flickr
    Just walk into the Golden age by entering the city of Polonnaruwa which is not only its capital but also an ancient kingdom of the Sri Lanka too. You will find some of the ancient remains of palaces, shrines and stupa. Each of these historical remains is blessed with a glorious past of their own.Once you have reached the place it will keep you glued to it that you wouldn’t even realize when time flies by.

    Image Credits : Antony Stanley - Flickr



    Location: Approximately a 5 hour drive from Colombo

    Highlights: You shouldn’t miss the chance to see the statue of Parakramabahu I who had his reign during the golden age. You can also witness a spectacular view of the Lotus Pond with its lotus shaped petals built on 4 tiers, the majestic view is not supposed to missed.


  • 13Visit Dambulla Cave Temple

    Image Credit : Joanne Goldby - Flickr
    Dambulla Cave temple is also known as the Golden Rock temple is also one of the world heritage city declared by UNESCO. The cave temple is made with a massive granite outcrop. The word ‘Damba’ means rock and ‘Ulla’ means fountain, hence you can see drip of water from the main house. If you have an eye for paintings then you can also see some of the historic paintings which shows the majestic manifestation of the first sermon of Buddha.

    Image Credits : Terry Feuerborn - Flickr



    Highlights: Don’t forget to visit the Golden temple Buddhist museum which will leave you jaw dropped with its spectacular entrance from the golden mouth of lion like beast.

    Location: You can come via Ambepussa and Kurunegala which is approximately 4 hours from Colombo.

    Prices: There are no prices charged for the same, however you have to pay  200 LKR for keeping the luggage.
  • 14Visit Sigiriya

    Image Credit : Pavel Dobrovsky - Flickr
    A visit to this place will show you a 1600 years old Sigiriya Fortress which was built by King Kasyapa. This massive compound is protected by two moats and three ramparts. It is once known to be the private residence of King Kasyapa. It is 165 km from Sri Lanka. Best time to visit: this area will be early in the morning or late in the afternoon.

     

    Image Credits : POTIER Jean-Louis - Flickr



    Highlights: Sigiriya Frescoes are truly beautiful which was hand painted by the king himself depicting celestial nymphs all around the circumference. And on top of these rocks, he built for himself a white palace which stands as an epitome of beauty.

    Timing:
    Opens daily from 7 AM to 5:30 PM.

    Price:  Approximate price starts from $15 to $25
  • 15The Old Town of Galle and Its Fortifications

    Image Credit : Suranga D Wijeratne - Flickr
    Even when in Sri Lanka you will feel as if you are in Europe. Get a chance to witness the works of Europeans in Sri Lanka by visiting the Old Town of Galle and its fortifications situated 120 km from Colombo. A perfect amalgamation of European architecture and South Asian traditions. The best way to explore this beautiful place is by hiring a bike and wandering the streets of Galle. Best time to visit is January and February which are comparatively drier periods. It is said that the mighty and the strong fortifications which were built around the city of Galle was started by Portuguese and was further developed by Dutch people. It is Galle which is the cultural world heritage site.

    Image Credits : Royston Rascals - Flickr



    Highlights: You can check out the gelato shop and the other restaurants which are around.

    Price
    : Approximate price starts from 3000 LKR to 30000 LKR
  • 16Yala National Park

    Image Credit : Kazue Asano - Flickr
    Spotting a leopard prowling in the Park of Yala is quite an ordinary spectacle. Witness the untamed world of nature in the Yala National Park and quench your eagerness to explore and learn more about wildlife. Yala National Park is located in the South-East part of Sri Lanka. Amidst both nature and wildlife, you will also find some faint cultural ruins which give the travellers a deeper insight about the earlier civilization. the Yala National Park lies in the south-eastern part of Sri Lanka closely hugging the Indian Ocean.

    Image Credits : Kazue Asano - Flickr



    Highlights: A safari to this natural park will surely leave you jaw drop as you will be able to witness Sri Lankan Sloth Bear, Leopards, and Elephants in big numbers.

    Prices: Approximate price starts from 3700 LKR

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  • 17Kandy Esala Perahera

    Image Credit : Charith Gunarathna - Flickr
    The biggest and the brightest Buddhist festivals celebrated in Sri Lanka is Kandy Esala Perahera. The festival is filled with glitzy and glamour, you can find dancers, jugglers and musicians all around, after all, that is what the word ‘Perahera’means. Mighty elephants are also beautifully decorated and are seen parading in the streets to add to the festivities. It is a ten-day long festival and is celebrated in the month of Esala, a month after which Buddha attained enlightenment.

    Image Credits : Denish c - Flickr



    Highlights: As per the customary ritual, it is important to plant a Jackfruit tree which leads to the commencement of the festival. During the festival, people also carry the sacred tooth relic of Buddha throughout the streets of Kandy. It is one of the major tourist attraction for all the people of Sri Lanka.RandoliPerahera- it is one of the most beautiful and magnificent Perahera with some 50 tuskers.



  • 18The Sacred City of Kandy

    Image Credit : Maximilian Imran Falee - Flickr
    Ignite your spiritual senses by visiting the sacred city of Kandy. The city of Kandy is situated on the lush green Hill Country in the central province of Sri Lanka. It is surrounded by tea plantations and hill stations. The city is dominated by a large and central lake. You can just walk and visit the several shrines which will come on the way.

    Image Credits : Koshy Koshy - Flickr



    Highlights: The Temple of Tooth is one of the famous amongst many tourists. This Buddhist temple is a part of the Kandyan royal palace. As per the age old tradition, it is said that the tooth of a Buddha which is saved from the funeral pyre and is protected by Sri Lankan for a very long time.Kandy Monasteries and Ceylon Tea Museum are other places of interest.

    Things to remember: One has to walk barefoot throughout the temple.

    Price
    : Approximate price starts from $20 to $100. 

  • 19Udawalawe National park

    Image Credit : Tim Ellis - Flickr
    You will be surrounded with herds of elephants once you reach Udawalawe National Park. The amazing jungle backdrop which this National Park provides will leave you totally mesmerized and will bring you much closer to nature. This National Park was an attempt to protect the wild animals who were displaced because of the construction of the Udawalawe reservoir. Location: South East of Colombo.

    Image Credits : Peter Nijenhuis- Flickr



    Highlights: Elephant Transit Home which is the elephant orphanage which has housed 25 baby elephants who have lost their parents. Pinnewala, is the spot where you can spot elephants quite closely because usually elephants are bottle fed there.

    Best time to visit: July and August

    Prices: is Rs.2195 along with 12%vat.
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  • 20World's End Nuwara Eliya

    Image Credit : Christopher - Flickr
    One of the most jaw-dropping experience you can ever have in Sri Lanka is the World’s End on the Horton Plains. Enjoy a tuk-tuk ride to the Horton plains from Nuwara Eliya. The best time to reach there is before 10:00 AM before it gets too cloudy because you will not be able to see anything after that. You can see animals such as leopards and deer. Experience the amazing flora and fauna which will be an amazing experience.

     

    Image Credits : Danushka Senadheera - Flickr



    Location: The nearest station is in Nanu Oya which is about 8km.

    Highlights
    : Baker’s fall which is truly spectacular

    Price
    : Approximate price starts from 3500 LKR 
  • 21The Sacred City of Anuradhapura

    Image Credit : Jonybraker - Flickr
    Anuradhapura is one of the world heritage site and the place gained importance only after the coming of the Bodhi tree which is known as the tree of enlightenment. The cutting of this tree was brought to Sri Lanka by Sanghamitta. The tree is well protected from wild elephants during the reign of King Kirthi Sri Rajasingha

    Image Credits : Charles Pieters - Flickr



    Highlights: Apart from the Bodhi tree, you can have a look at the Ruwanwelisaya which is one of the magnificent stupa.

    Best time to visit: April and September.

    Location: It is approximately hours from Anuradhapura-Padeniya highway

     Price: 25$
  • 22Gangaramaya Temple

    Image Credit : Nigel Swales
    Gangaramaya Temple is not only one of the most beautiful but also one of the most iconic Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka. It is more than a century since this temple was constructed; however even today, the temple doesn’t stop to surprise tourists and devotees. The pathways and doors that lead into the main sanctum sanctorum contain intricately carved sculptures that are simply breath-taking.

    Highlights: The ceilings and walls contain pictures and miniature paintings that explain stories from Buddhism religion. In the main sanctorum, a huge Buddha statue exudes a brilliant sense of calmness in the devotees. Built in a mix of various architectural styles including India, Burmese, Thai and Chinese, this temple also houses a museum.

    Image Credits : Charaka Ranasinghe



    Location: The temple is located right on the Jinaratana Road in the heart of Colombo city.

    Timings: The temple is open from 5.30AM to 10PM.

    Price: Entry fee is LKR200 per adult.
  • 23Independence Memorial Hall

    Independence Memorial Hall in Colombo, as the name indicates, was constructed to commemorate the occasion of Sri Lankan Independence from British Rule. The construction of this memorial was completed during 1953.

    Highlights: When you come here, you ought to visit the Independence Memorial Museum as well, which honours the people who fought for Sri Lankan Independence. Currently, this hall is the venue where Independence Day celebrations and other national events are being held. Prior to the construction of the Sri Lankan Parliament, this memorial Hall served as the ceremonial assembly as well. This place currently caters to the needs of fitness enthusiasts as the open spaces here are used for jogging, cycling, public gym, aerobic sessions and other relevant activities.

    Image Credits : Chamara Sumanapala



    Location:
    The hall is located in Cinnamon Gardens and was formerly known as Torrington Square.

    Timings: This hall is open all through the year.

    Price: Entry into the hall is free of cost.
  • 24Viharamahadevi Park

    Image Credit : DennisSylvesterHurd
    Named after Queen Viharamahadevi, this park is the largest and probably the only public park in Colombo. It is one of those places that never cease to excite you irrespective of the number of times you come here.

    Highlights: There are lots of places to visit here like the aquarium, mini zoo, children’s play zone, war memorial, lake and the dangerous-yet-adventurous suspension bridge above it. When you and your kids are tired of running round the park, you can just relax on the cool resting places on the park, eating local delicacies like candy floss, corn and ice-creams from the sellers here. A canopy of green trees lends a beautiful ambience to this place.

    Image Credits : cat_collector



    Location: The Park is located right next to the famous National Museum in the heart of Colombo.

    Timings: This Park is open all through the year.

    Price: Entry into the park is free of cost.
  • 25Dutch Reformed Church

    Image Credit : yeowatzup
    One of the finest and most traditional Tourist attractions in Galle which is worth to visit and admire is the Galle Fort. The Dutch Reformed Church is the ancient building located in the premises of the fort. The building’s date goes back the 18th century during the Dutch period.

    A walk through the Fort ground along with the humble caretaker, immersing in his never-ending fancy stories will take you back to the era whence it was built. The Church is also known as Groot Kert.

    Image Credits : Matthew Goulding



    Highlights: Many tombstones dating back to the 17th can be observed; this church also is a Cruciform with shorter transepts separated by two arches. The floor is marked with gravestones. The beautiful pulpit made from Malaysian wood, calamander is a beautiful sight and near to the pulpit is the memorial of De Ly Family.

    Location: Church Street, Galle fort

    Timings: 9 am to 5 Pm
  • 26Galle Fort/Dutch Fort

    Image Credit : Towle N

    Dutch Fort is one of the most extraordinary historical and archeological sites of the world. The fort was first constructed by Portuguese in the late sixteenth century and fortified expansively by the Dutch in the mid-seventeenth century. It is a stunning blend of archeology, architecture, and history in the backdrop of the tropical atmosphere.  Its appeal lies in that it is not just a historical monument. Even today the life is buzzing inside it, with a museum, gorgeous villas, administrative offices, antique shops, cafes, bookstores and lifestyle stores.

    Image Credits : Ankur P


    Location: Situated in the Southern Sri Lankan Coast in the Bay of Galle just 132 KM from Colombo.

    Highlights: A stroll on the streets will let you experience the beautiful architecture of the colonial style buildings that still exudes the warmth and charm. Visit National Maritime Museum, stop by Meera Mosque and enjoy delicacies at Lucky Fort Restaurant and Galle Fort Hotel Restaurant.

    Timing: Opened 24 hours a day 

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  • 27Mahiyanganaya Sorabora Lake

    Image Credit : Harshana W - Flickr
    Lush greenery, tropical climate and wilderness camping is the key essence of visiting Mahiyanganaya Sorabora Lake. This is a manmade lake believed to be constructed by King Dutugemunu's betel supplier named Bulata. There is a beautiful sluice gate here which is a known to be quite old built in around 162 BC but believed to be still in use.Camping here is a pleasure with unlimited leisure options of fishing and enjoying boat ride on the lake. The scenic extravaganza especially during the sunrise and sunset time is simply breathtaking.



    Highlights
    : Fish viewing and bird watching

    Location
    : Uva Province, Sri Lanka

    Best Season
    : Throughout the year
  • 28Dehiwala Zoo

    Image Credit : Harshana W
    Dehiwala Zoo or the National Zoological Gardens of Sri Lanka was set up during 1936 with the sole ambition of providing ultimate protection to a wide range of wild animals and birds. . When you are here, do not miss the impressive performances from elephants, chimpanzees and sea lions.

    Image Credits : Hafiz Issadeen

      

    Location: This zoo is located at 
    Anagarika Dharmapala Mawatha, Dehiwala.

    Highlights:
     This place is one of the members of WAZA (World Association of Zoos and Aquariums). In order to encourage breeding, this zoo is actively involved in animal exchange programs. The place is known for its exotic varieties of mammals, birds, fishes, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies and marine invertebrates

    Timings: The zoo is open from 8.30 AM to 6:00 PM on all days.

    Price: 
    Approximate price starts from 100 LKR for adult and 30 LKR for child, for foreigners 500 LKR for adults and 250 LKR for child.

  • 29St Anthony's Church

    St. Anthony’s Church is one of the most-visited places in the city. During weekends, Tuesdays and on major festivals, the church is flocked by devotees who come here from different parts of the world, as the place is believed to produce miracles. The church was constructed as a very small mud structure many years ago and it was made bigger during 1806.

    Image Credits : HumanityAshore



    Location: The church is located at Kochchikade. 

    Highlights:
    The main altar holds the statue of St. Anthony, which was brought all the way from Goa, in a safe bullet-proof glass container. Tuesdays are considered too special days here and there are special masses and benediction services in Tamil, English, and Sinhala all through the day. On week days, the church conducts Tamil and Sinhala Mass. During weekends, the church conducts Tamil, English and Sinhala masses.

    Timings: Open all through the day.

    Price: Entry is free of cost.
  • 30Attidiya Bird Sanctuary

    Image Credit : Madhawa Habarakada
    This is probably the only place in Colombo that provides shelter to at least 50 different species of birds (both local and migratory).

    Highlights: A large number of water monitors, butterflies, insects and other birds tend to catch your attention as you walk through the muddy paths of the sanctuary. The biodiversity of this place is highly commendable, as you cannot help but feel awe-struck at the diverse species of birds here. As the place is replete with mosquitoes, you need to be fully covered while visiting the park.

    Image Credits : Madhawa Habarakada



    Location: The sanctuary is located at Boralesgamuwa in Colombo.

    Timings: The sanctuary is open all through the day; however early mornings and evenings are best to visit migratory birds.

    Best Season to Visit: You must visit this place during the months between December and January, as this is the peak season for migratory birds to seek protection here.

    Price: Entry to the place is free of cost.
  • 31Mount Lavinia

    Image Credit : Greg Grimes - Flickr
    You will find an air of liberalism in the beaches of Mount Lavinia situated just 12 kms south of central Colombo. This virgin beach remains untouched by the damaging effects of industrialisation which can be easily seen in the nearby beaches of Sri Lanka.

    The beach is known for its fun nightlife which is why it becomes the biggest attraction for young travellers. Asia’s largest national zoological gardens can be found in Sri Lanka’s Mount Lavinia.The golden sandy beaches remain the hotspot for many travellers and tourists.

    Image Credits : John Piercy - Flickr



    Highlights: Barracuda Reef lies close to Mount Lavinia and is a great scuba diving sight. Mount Lavinia hosts Rainbow Kite Festival which allows people of every age group to show their artistic talent of flying colorful kites.
  • 32Old Dutch Hospital

    This building is one of those areas that have preserved their charm for quite a few centuries now. Constructed during 1681, this building crossed many stages before getting converted into a shopping complex that it is today.

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    Location
    : This shopping arcade is located in the Galle Fort area, at Hospital Street.

    Highlights
    : This is the most ancient building in Colombo Fort and was set up with the main purpose of providing medical assistance to people working for Dutch East India Company. Do not miss to visit Odels, one of the most decent joints selling high-quality souvenirs and clothes. If you are interested in shopping and eating good food, you have to visit this area as it lined with lots of cafés and eating joints.


    Timings
    : It is open from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM on all days of the week. 

    Price
    : Entry to this place is not chargeable.
  • 33Beira Lake

    Image Credit : Sujal Shah
    If there is one place where you can get the combined benefits of adventure, pilgrimage, picnic and fun, it is the Beira Lake. This is one of the hot tourist spots in Colombo as well. One can enjoy duck paddle boat rides on the lake.

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    Location: Located quite close to the famous Gangaramaya temple, Beira Lake offers an excellent view of the temple, especially in the evenings, when the temple is fully illuminated. 

    Highlights
    : There is another temple right in the middle of the lake – Seema Malaka Temple. This temple contains lots of Buddhist statues and a few Hindu idols.

    Timings: The lake is open all through the year to enable visitors; however evenings are the best to come here to get a panoramic view of the temple.

    Price
    Approximate price is 300 LKR however if you have paid for entry into the Gangaramaya temple,that will suffice here as well.
  • 34Royal Palace of Kandy

    The Royal palace of the Kandyan Kingdom is the last reminiscence of the reigning King of Kandayan, Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe. The palace dates back to the 14th century, yet witnessing the glory and glamour of the kingdom is stupendous. The Palace has seen scars from many wars and tremors of foreign invaders like the Portuguese.

    The Royal court, another architectural capture has confronted many meetings formed by the king and it is here that the end of Kandyan Kingdom convention was signed.
    The temple of Tooth contributes maximum attraction to the tourists. Even though, the original palace walls have been burnt and rebuilt, the interiors remain the same.

    Image Credits : Amila Tennakoon - Flickr




    Highlights: Dalada Maligawa - Temple of Tooth (relic of Buddha’s Tooth), Royal Court (Magul Maduwa), Queen’s Bathing pavilion – Ulpange and the Royal gardens inside the Palace gates

     Location: Sri Dalads Veediya

     Kandy Price: Rs 100 per head Timings: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
  • 35Udawattekele Sanctuary

    The Udawattekele Sanctuary, also known as Royal Park Palace is located at the hilly terrains of the Temple of Tooth Relic. The sanctuary scatters around 257 acres and is deemed as the most important Bio Reserve of the country. The sanctuary, centuries back was a kingdom named Kandyan and jungle area on the far side of the palace was known as the Uda Wasala Watta or the upper palace garden; hence the name.

    The forest reserve was made into a sanctuary in 1938. Additionally, the forest’s catchment areas provide fresh water to the lake and the city avail its air purification supplies from this royal forest reserve.

    Highlights: Quite a few Buddhist temples, water pond, Kodimale Peak, Senkanda Cave and Garrison Cemetery.



    Entry Fee: Rs. 570 for foreigners and Rs. 30 for Srilankans

    Location: Wevelpitiya Road, Kandy

     Timings: Everyday. But it is safe not to visit the sanctuary during rainy season
  • 36Horton Plains National Park

    Image Credit : gωen - Flickr
    Horton National Park is a ‘food for the soul’ kind of mesmerizing locale. The park is perched in the shadows of the country’s 2nd and 3rd highest mountains, Kirigalpota and Totapola. The place is also termed as world’s end due to its undaunting mysterious views of waterfalls, misted lakes and earthy species of flora and fauna. The national park is actually a plateau and is 2000m high.

    It is better to start early in the morning to witness this heavenly place.

    Highlights: An array of wildlife such as Samba deers, leopards, wild boars, purple faced langoor; an ideal site for birdwatchers as you may encounter a variety of flying wonders such as bulbul, Ceylon blackbird, Ceylon white eyed arrenga, mountain hawk etc; the epic walk to world’s end(4kms) and Farr Inn hunting lodge.

    Image Credits : Tjeerd Wiersma - Flickr



    Location: 11 kms approx from Ohiya.

    Price: Adult – 1895 Child: 1011.

    Timings: 6 am to 6 pm
  • 37Galle Face Green

    Image Credit : Richard Tanton - Flickr
    Avid Joggers, walkers and kite flyers for whom honking horns are a big turn off. We have Galle Face Green, a beautiful stretch of lawn facing the sea right in the very heart of Columbo. You will breath, the way a person from a crowded city would love to . This place is bustling with life all the time.
     
    For people who don’t mind putting on that extra calorie can try some street side food from the local hawkers, who gather there to fill up your stomach with some tasty food.The local food is too hard to resist for food lovers who would love to tickle their palate with the same

    Image Credits : Scott Edmunds - Flickr



    Highlights: If you breathe shopping then this place is aptly for you. You can buy hand-loomed bedspreads, cushion covers, lampshades available at different price range from Designer Barbara Sansoni which is located in old villa.
  • 38Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue

    Image Credit : Andy Nobes - Flickr
    This place showcases a breathtaking view of the entire Kandy town. The 88ft high statue of Buddha is something one should not miss while in Kandy. The white statue can be seen from any part of the Peradeniya city as it is strategically located on top of the Bahirava Kanda (devil’s) hill. You can either climb the steps to reach the viewpoint or else hire a tuk-tuk to do so. The beauty of the statue doubles during the night when it is lit by lamps. Best hour to visit this place is early morning or after sunset.



    Highlights:
    Panoramic view of the city down, including a view of the lake, tea factory, and football stadium; gallery that has artefacts based on life of Buddha; a souvenir shop which has lovely goodies at a much friendlier price

    Location: Peradeniya, Kandy.

    Price: Approximate price starts from 200 LKR.

    Timings: Open 24 hours a day.
  • 39Visit Spice Garden

    Spice Gardens forms a key attraction of Sri Lanka. The country is famous across the globe for its rare collection of herbs and spices. The key attraction of this location is to explore the popular as well as the rarest herbs being sown and processed in the most exquisite manner. Herbs those are common in a household like Turmeric, Pepper Corns, Cloves, Cardamom, Nutmeg, Vanilla, Cinnamon, Cocoa, Aloe Vera, etc are being processed here. The best part of visiting the Spice Garden in Kandy is to gather knowledge about the herbs, their growth process, their benefits and usefulness in Human life. The natural environment and serene beauty of the Garden is one of the mesmerizing experiences for every traveler. Away from the hustle of city life, this is a complete contrast of environment.

    Image Credits : Terry Feuerborn



    Located: Located at the Hill capital, Kandy this is close to Botanical Garden

  • 40Perandeniya Botanical Gardens

    Image Credit : Koshyk
    Peradeniya Gardens is a spacious 147 acre of natural extravaganza consisting of more than 4000 species of plants, and 10,000 varied kinds of trees, incidentally serves as the largest garden of Sri Lanka. The unique and rarest collection in these gardens is the Giant Bamboo of Burma which grows 12 inches each day to a height of 40 meters. Apart from this other amazing collections include Javan fig tree, Cannonball tree, Double Coconut Palm and about 200 other varieties of palm trees and versatile collection of flora.

    The Peradeniya Botanical Garden is one prime tourist attraction of hill country and remains quite flooded with tourists every weekend. One can pack some food to enjoy an open air picnic here or can relish the cafeteria inside serving local and western cuisine.



    Location: 5.5km from Kandy

    Best Time: 7:30am to 5:00pm

    Price: 2353LKR for adults and 1177LKR for child.(approx)