Sri Lanka & Maldives

This well-paced itinerary combines Sri Lanka’s highlights: culture, scenic beauty and wildlife experiences, with downtime on an idyllic Maldivian island.

The first eight days of your holiday is spent journeying through Sri Lanka. You will discover the historical, colonial town of Galle; enjoy wildlife spotting in Yala National Park; travel into the cool climate of the Tea Country and explore the sacred city of Kandy. It’s then time to relax and reflect on your experiences with 4 nights on a tropical Maldivian island, just a short flight away.

At a glance
  • Spot leopards at Yala NP – home to the world’s densest leopard population.
  • Wind your way through Sri Lanka’s countryside aboard a local train.
  • Sample the freshest tea you're likely to have tried at a tea factory
  • Stroll Galle’s historic walls above bustling streets and the Indian Ocean
  • Play at being Robinson Crusoe in the truly idyllic Maldives archipelago.
Itinerary
Price & Hotels

Galle - 2 nights

The historic colonial fortifications of Galle form another of the country’s UNESCO World Heritage sites, with signs of its time under Portuguese, French and British occupation evident in the architecture and extravagant interiors throughout Old Galle. New Galle, outside the walls, is reminiscent of a miniature Delhi or Mumbai, with its markets tempting you to explore. Stroll around the ramparts, looking over the streets and cricket ground and out to sea, as you chat with the locals who are up there with you enjoying breathtaking views of their town.

Day 1 - Arrive Colombo, drive to Galle

On arrival in Sri Lanka, you'll be met by your private guide, who will accompany you to your hotel in Galle.

Welcome to Selective Asia! This level of personal service (such as private transfers, private tours etc) is what you can expect throughout your trip. A few services (eg boat cruises) will be shared, but we'll always make sure you're aware of these.

Day 2 - Galle Fort Tour

Includes:

After a morning at leisure, head out with your guide to explore the Old Town of Galle and the impressive fortifications at Galle Fort, where a warren of narrow streets are surrounded by ramparts that overlook the ocean. Stroll around the old walls as your guide points out places of interest, and see how the area has transformed over the centuries to now include boutique shops, art galleries and cafes that sit alongside, and within, the historic buildings. Continue exploring independently,and ask your guide to recommend a restaurant where you can enjoy dinner amid the Galle evening hum.

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Yala National Park - 1 night

Yala National Park covers an area of around 129,700 hectares, with Yala West (or Ruhuna) National Park believed to have the world’s highest density of leopards, with about 35 believed to reside within the park's boundaries. Other animals in the park include elephants, sloth bears, deer, monkey, mongoose and crocodile, as well as over 130 recorded bird species at Yala East.

Day 3 - Drive to Yala National Park, dusk safari

Includes:

After breakfast depart the hills to the more arid lands of the south east and, in particular, Yala National Park. Having checked in to your lodge there will be time to freshen up before joining your guide & tracker for a dusk safari through the park.

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Ella & Tea Country - 3 nights

Sri Lanka’s southern heart holds an impressive range of hills known as Tea Country. Climbing into the low clouds, you’ll pass through mile after mile of some of the world's finest tea, and see it harvested by expert pickers whose bright saris stand out among the green fields. There are numerous waterfalls and deep, picturesque valleys dotted throughout the region,

Day 4 - Dawn safari, drive to Ella

Includes:

Rise early for a dawn drive through Yala National Park searching for wildlife as the park's inhabitants noisily greet the new day. Enjoy a sumptuous breakfast before departing for the hills. Having checked into your hotel, the remainder of your day is at leisure to explore Ella. Although there is a steadily growing handful of shops and guesthouses, and more opening frequently, it remains a close-knit, laid back place with perfect views through Ella Gap: a picturesque valley that cuts through the hills and far into the distance.

Day 5 - Tea Country Train

Includes:

Make a morning stop at Lipton's Seat, one of the highest look-out points in Sri Lanka, before transferring to Ella train station for a scenic train ride through tea country. From the comfort of your carriage, you’ll see mile after mile of tea fields rush past, dotted with waterfalls and valleys before arriving at Hatton train station. Having met your guide and transferring to your hotel, the remainder of your day is at leisure. Sitting 1,271 metres above sea level, deep in the heart of Tea Country, Hatton is surrounded by vast tea-plantations and forest-clad hills. Aside from its scenic setting, it's an ideal base from which to explore Adam’s Peak, Sri Lanka's most sacred mountain.

Day 6 - Tea factory visit

Includes:

Meet your guide for a tour of a nearby tea factory to learn about the history and modern-day production methods of the region's most valuable commodity. Return to your hotel where there will be time to relax in the cool shade, drinking as much of the region’s world-class tea as you can!

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Kandy - 1 night

Kandy, Sri Lanka’s ancient capital, is home to the sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic, and host to the most important festival in Sri Lanka's calendar; the Esala Perahera. Nestling within a steep, and strikingly picturesque valley, descending into the town for the first time feels pretty special.

Day 7 - Drive to Kandy, Temple of the Tooth Relic

Includes:

Morning departure for the sacred city of Kandy. In the late afternoon, visit Kandy's most famous site - the Temple of the Tooth Relic - where Buddhists believe a tooth of the Lord Buddha is enshrined. Wait with bated breath as the golden casket, which Buddhists believe holds a tooth of Lord Buddha, is revealed to a frenzy of prayers.

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Negombo - 1 night

Negombo is one of the island's most famous and longest established resort's with a wide sandy beach and a number of large beachfront hotels. There is also a traditional fishing village and when timed well, it's enjoyable to watch the local fishermen returning with their daily catch. Located just 30 minutes from Colombo's international airport, for many Negombo is the perfect spot for the first or last beach stop of an trans-island touring holiday.

Day 8 - Drive to Negombo

Includes:

After a leisurely breakfast depart for Negombo on the west coast, perfectly located just 30 minutes drive from the airport. Having checked into your hotel the remainder of your day will be at leisure to relax.

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Maldives - 4 nights

The Maldives are as picture-postcard perfect as you imagine them to be. Lying in the Indian Ocean to the south west of India and Sri Lanka, the Maldives archipelago consists of 26 atolls, spread over an area of 90,000 square kilometres. Nearly 1,200 islands make up this tropical paradise and many still remain uninhabited. It’s time to indulge in that Robinson Crusoe dream!

Day 9 - Fly to the Maldives

Includes:

Transfer to Colombo Airport in time for your onward flight to the Maldives. Upon arrival you will be met by our local representative who will guide you to either the seaplane or speedboat port, depending on your chosen island resort, for your onward transfer. Having checked into your resort the remainder of your day is at leisure to settle into the lap of luxury!

Days 10 to 12 - Enjoy a few days R&R

Includes:

While away your days sunbathing and snorkelling, punctuated by leisurely lunches and happy hour cocktails at sunset.

Day 13 - Depart Maldives

Includes:

Transfer from your resort by either seaplane or speedboat (depending on your resort) to Male International Airport in time for your onward flight.

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We only provide privately guided holidays - meaning that you will not be expected to share guides or transport for the duration of your visit. You can also start on any day you choose.

Please click on the hotel category buttons below to view hotel details. These are recommended properties only - we have many alternative options for you to choose from if you would prefer. You can mix hotel categories throughout your holiday.

Hotel class Price per person (based on total # travelling)
2 persons 3 - 4 5 - 6
First Class £2,034US$2,664 £1,994US$2,611 £1,971US$2,582

Deco on 44

As its name suggests, Deco on 44 is located in an outstanding Art Deco-style property that has been refurbished throughout to ensure your stay is as comfortable... See more

Chaarya Resort & Spa

Chaarya Resort is the perfect base for wildlife enthusiasts...

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98 Acres Resort & Spa

Built on (not coincidentally) 98 acres of historic tea estate with mind-blowing views across waves of emerald Ceylon tea towards Little Adam’s Peak... See more

Bungalows by Jetwing

Set deep in the heart of Sri Lanka’s tea country, Jetwing's three converted colonial period planter’s bungalows ooze nostalgia, heritage and colonial character... See more

OZO Kandy

If you’re looking for a convenient, central Kandy location, then the OZO Kandy certainly ticks that box: being close to the lakeside and within walking distance of the Temple of the Tooth. The design is more modern and sleek... See more

Pledge 3

From the outside you could be forgiven for confusing Pledge 3 for a nightclub, concealed as it is behind a concrete wall on an unassuming street, a neon sign the only point of reference. In actual fact, this secluded boutique hotel is... See more

Reethi Beach Resort

Offering excellent value for a Maldives dive resort, the Reethi Beach has comprehensive facilities, and is reached via a very pretty 35 minutes seaplane flight from Male... See more
Superior £3,665US$4,801 £3,275US$4,290 £3,210US$4,205

The Fort Printers

The utterly charming Fort Printers hotel was originally a school house, later a print house before being turned into its latest reincarnation: a boutique-style hotel... See more

Cinnamon Wild Yala

With its game-lodge style luxury bungalows and excellent location, tucked against the border of Yala National Park and next to one of the area's distinctive villu lakes, Cinnamon Wild is ideal for wildlife lovers... See more

98 Acres Resort & Spa

Built on (not coincidentally) 98 acres of historic tea estate with mind-blowing views across waves of emerald Ceylon tea towards Little Adam’s Peak... See more

Camellia Hills

Overlooking a picturesque view of sweeping tea fields and a mirror-like reservoir, Camellia Hills boasts an impressive location. With just five rooms, guests can enjoy an intimate experience of the tea region of ... See more

Elephant Stables

A beautifully restored Colonial property, the Elephant Stables was originally home to Kandy’s first elected mayor, and sits perched on the hillside with a superb view over the ancient capital... See more

Jetwing Sea

Boasting a direct beachfront location, a 20 minute drive from the airport, Jetwing Sea is an ideally situated hotel.… See more

Kuda Fushi Resort & Spa

45 minutes by seaplane from Malé, the Kuda Fushi Resort & Spa enjoys its own private atoll in the Maldives, and offers ideal facilities for families and couples... See more
Deluxe £4,219US$5,527 £4,039US$5,291 £3,975US$5,207

Taru Villas - Rampart Street

An elegant combination of colonial charm and modern amenities, The Taru Villas - Rampart Street also boasts an enviable location in Galle's Old Town... See more

Jetwing Yala Resort

Located just 10 minutes from the Yala National Park entrance, Jetwing Yala Resort is one of the closest properties to the park. Infact with no barriers between the resort and the park there is the very real possibility of wildlife wandering through... See more

Nine Skies

Named after the ‘nine skies’ which can be seen through the arches of the famous Demodara Nine Arch Bridge, Nine Skies is perfectly placed for those looking to admire one of Sri Lanka’s iconic views... See more

Tea Trails

With its selection of different lodges, each set in a stunning landscape, Tea Trails is rightly considered the premier of Tea Country experiences... See more

Stone House

Suave and sophisticated, the Stone House wouldn’t look out of place in the pages of an interior design magazine. Couple this with personalised service and attention to detail... See more

The Wallawwa

Opened in 2008, The Wallawwa is just 15 minutes by car from Colombo’s Bandaranaike Airport, making it the ideal stopover for your first or last night in Sri Lanka. In truth, however, you’d be happy to stay a week... See more

LUX South Ari Atoll

LUX* are known for their spotless approach, and in the Maldives resort this is complemented by a relaxed spontaneity... See more

Solo travellers are always welcome - please contact us for a tailored quote.

These prices are shown in GBPUSD.
Selective Asia is a UK-registered company, but our client-base spans the globe, so we bank in both GBP and USD and can therefore provide a fixed price in either currency.
We also have payment facilities in Canada, New Zealand, Australia and the EU, and can typically offer better-than-bank exchange rates on the date of payment in these currencies (against a booking priced in GBP).

Itinerary additions

  • For many the Cultural Triangle is a must-see. Give us two nights and we'll show you the highlights of the island's heritage.
  • An overnight in the capital city of Colombo is an easy addition before flying out to the Maldives.
At Selective Asia we specialise in creating unique, tailor-made experiences. The holiday itineraries provided on this website are intended to help you visualise what is achievable in your destinations of choice, over a given period of time and at an intended budget.
Whilst many clients are happy with of our recommended itineraries in the current form, there are those that wish to personalise their holiday in some way, whether it be a change of hotel, an additional destination or even start from scratch. This is when our tailor-made specialists come into their own; with many years of experience both living and working in the region they are ideally equipped to advise on alternatives and to facilitate any necessary changes.

The important stuff

Please note: Sri Lankan & Maldives hotel contracts are extremely seasonal in comparison to most of their Asian counterparts and therefore you should expect surcharges at various times of the year, not just festive periods. Your consultant will be happy to advise you of these.

The cost of the Colombo to Male flight is not included in this itinerary. This is because it is often possible to get this at a reduced cost as part of your international flight tickets. We will be happy to advise you further on this.

Inclusive:

  • English speaking, local guide in Sri Lanka
  • All accommodation listed
  • Land transportation in Sri Lanka by private air-conditioned saloon car / minivan (for small group). Please ask for vehicle upgrade supplement if required.
  • Return airport transfer by speedboat or seaplane in the Maldives
  • All admission fees at attractions, temples and activities as mentioned in the itinerary
  • All meals listed
  • International flight reconfirmation.

Exclusive:

  • Flights to/from Asia. We are an ATOL bonded operator and can arrange flights for all our clients, regardless of whether you are departing from the UK or from almost any other worldwide destination.
  • Entry visas
  • International airport departure taxes
  • Any meals not listed in the itinerary
  • Drinks, other than water on activity days
  • Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, drinks, tip...)
  • Travel insurance
  • All other services not listed in 'inclusive'

Please note

All prices are correct at the time of publishing. They are liable to change and can only be confirmed upon submitting an enquiry.

 

Extras

Flights

We will arrange all internal flights used within our holiday itineraries. We can also arrange discounted flights from all UK airports to Asia and we are a fully bonded ATOL operator. If you would like a quote for your international flights then please complete the required section on the enquiry form.

Visa

You may require a visa to enter Sri Lanka. For the Maldives, a 30-day free visa is issued on arrival for all nationalities. Your consultant will be happy to advise you on visa requirements.

Passport

Please ensure that you have a valid passport with at least 6 months validity remaining after your return date. You will also need at least one blank page for each of the countries you are visiting.

Insurance

You will require a comprehensive travel insurance that covers you for medical costs associated with hospitalisation, emergency travel and repatriation back to your home country. We offer our customers a specially discounted insurance policy, ideally suited to the needs that a trip such as this creates. Tick the insurance box in the enquiry form and we will send you a quote to suit your needs.

Vaccinations and Malaria Prevention

You will undoubtedly require vaccinations for your visit to Asia. Please consult your doctor or a vaccination clinic for the most up-to-date advice. They will also be able to advise you of the most suitable anti-malarial medication if required. It is important that you do this well in advance of your departure date.

Booking Procedure

Only once you are completely happy with any holiday itinerary we create for you will we ask for a payment. In order that we can secure availability for your booking we would typically require a deposit of 20%.

Travelling Responsibly

We care about the places and the communities that you will travel through. It is important to us that we travel as responsibly as possible throughout Asia and that we are giving something back to the regions and the people that make these journeys so special. Full details on our approach to responsible travel can be found on a dedicated section of this website.

Make it yours!

Call us on 01273 670 001

Get in touch

Claire – Sri Lanka tailor-made specialist

'This classic combination of Sri Lanka & the Maldives is a well-balanced mix of culture, wildlife and tropical beach. It makes for a particularly stylish honeymoon.'

ClaireSri Lanka tailor-made specialist

Speak to Claire on 01273 670 001


Proud to be supporting the Leopard Guardian Project at Yala National Park - read more

Make it yours!

Call us on 01273 670 001

Get in touch

Our tailor-made service costs you no extra

This itinerary is designed to work straight off the peg, but we'll happily tailor it until it's a perfect fit for you, to ensure we’re making the absolute best of your time and funds. All you need to do is ask...

Your own private guides & drivers

You'll typically have your own private guides & drivers throughout your trip. When you will be sharing a service (eg a boat cruise) with others, we'll always let you know.