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Srilanka Holiday Packages

Sri Lanka, officially known as the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, is an island country in the northern Indian Ocean, off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent in South Asia.

Colombo is the largest city of Sri Lanka, located on the west coast of the island and adjacent to Sri Jayawardenapura Kotte, the capital of the country and a satellite city.  This city has many canals and geographically is a mix of land and water. In the heart of the city lies the Beira Lake within which the Seema Malakaya temple and the Gallery Island can be seen. This lake is one of the most distinctive landmarks, and remains a popular attraction, hosting regattas and theatrical events on its shores. Pettah around the city is more crowded than its fort area and its roads are always packed and pavements are full of small stalls selling every requirement from delicious sherbet to shirts. Move on with the Sri Lanka Holiday Package!

Colombo is often referred to as the commercial capital of the country. Travellers visiting this place may feast their eyes with novices such as The National Museum of Colombo, situated in the cinnamon garden area and housing the crown jewels.  There is also the Colombo Dutch Museum, detailing the Dutch colonial history of the country.   A small collection of Sri Lankan masterpieces at the Art Gallery in Green Path might attract the crowds, next to which is the Natural History Museum.  The Dutch Period Museum displays Dutch legacy through artifacts such as furniture, ceramics, coins, arms,   weapons, pottery, portraits and furniture from the period of Dutch rule. The Maritime Museum transports visitors through maritime history and has some fascinating antiques that were used by lighthouse keepers, pirates, and sailors. The Kelaniya Temple is a splendid example of Buddhist architecture and art. At the temple entrance you would find the 'Makara Thorana' archway which is a symbol of protection in local mythology, and a stylized depiction of animals combined into an elaborate pattern.   

Colombo's Zoological Park has a wide variety of animals, birds, and reptiles and the most popular enthrallment in the zoo is the elephant show, which is held every day, and   also offers elephant and pony rides. The Casa Serena Art Gallery is a purpose built space, designed to exhibit a diverse array of art, photography, sculpture, video installations and craft. It focuses on contemporary and traditional arts and features the work of resident and international artists.  Gangaramaya Viharaya is probably Colombo's most famous Buddhist temple and has been making a valuable contribution to Buddhist traditions and learning as a centre for worship in Sri Lanka. Viharamahadevi Park,   is the green lung of Colombo,and is the largest, oldest and most colourful park.  There are small ponds, occasional elephants and some interesting Buddha statues with a special children's section which has a small train ride and a zoo of baby animals. There are swings, see-saws, and other amusement activities for children as well. The Dehiwela Zoo has a wide collection of fauna from all over the world and the Min Medura or aquarium displaying varieties of aquatic life is spectacular, with a well-stocked aviary and a Butterfly Park. The highlight is the elephant show in the evening.

Another incredible site is the Independence Hall at the Independence Square in Cinnamon Gardens.  Even before the Parliament was built, some claim that the Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque was recognized as the landmark of Colombo by sailors approaching the port, and the most visited tourist site in the city. The St. Paul’s Church Milagiriya, one of the oldest churches in Sri Lanka, is also a landmark, first built by the Portuguese and re-built by the British.  The Fort district also has the famous Cargills and Millers Complex that is protected by a special government law from demolition,  done mainly to preserve the historic beauty of the Fort area.The Wolvendaal Church is a living edifice of the Dutch colonial architecture and a monument of the Dutch Christian zeal.

The Galle Face Green is the city’s largest and most elegant promenade, lined with palm trees adjacent to the coast, and this mile-long stretch in the heart of the city is a constant beehive of activity, as in the evening it plays host to families and children playing sports and flying kites, lovers embracing under umbrellas and health enthusiasts taking their daily evening walks.  There are numerous small food stalls and a small stretch of beach to get wet.  .  The Green also frequently hosts numerous international and local concerts and performances, such as the recently concluded World Drum Festival. Several old clubs of the city give a glimpse of the British equestrian life style, and these include the Colombo Club, Orient Club, the 80's Club and the Colombo Cricket Club.

The following is a list of beaches in Sri Lanka, which could excite the tourists and tinkle their curiousity for discovering nature’s phenomena! Negombo which is a fishing town located  a short distance from Colombo has a beautiful beach and the surrounding star class hotels lend super attraction for the visitors, Mount Lavinia is a historical city and has a fantastic beach offering beach sports and activities such as swimming and surfing, offering a good deal for nightlife. Kalutara is another important spice trading centre and named as a sacred city of the Buddhist people, which has hollow dagoba, a Buddhist shrine, near the River Kalu.  Koggala is the place located towards the south of the country, some distance from Colombo, and has the  finest beach and  the historical  Madol Duwa, island surrounded by a lake, has been mentioned in Sri Lankan literature. You can spot the very famous stilt farmers here, who fish when there is a suitable tide. The Dickwella beach is towards the east of Matara and this long stretch of sand  is largely protected by headlands, reefs and sand-bars, making it safer for swimming.  The headlands have reefs along their rocks, close to the beach. At both the Pehambiya end and the western end, swimmers can snorkel out from the beach to watch colourful reef fish amongst the rocks.

Bentota, another locale in the south of the country, has romantic scenery hotels and is famed for wind surfing and water skiing, ringing a bell within you on the Sri Lanka Holiday Package! Facing the Indian Ocean, it is a tropical lagoon and major river, offering water sports possibilities nowhere else to be found. Apart from swimming, body-surfing or diving in the sea, you can jet-ski, windsurf, parasail or enjoy a romantic river safari on the river and lagoon. Being the most established beach resorts in Sri Lanka,  Bentota is known for its professional touristic infrastructure and is  ideal for activities ranging from water sports to excursion along the river, strolling through many small villages, temples and, of course, an abundance of tropical wildlife and plants. The Maadu river offers very ecstatic boat trips down the river, where you can arrange to visit temples, cinnamon estates and other nature resorts and the area is a preserved wild life sanctuary.

Kandy is located at the center of Sri Lanka and is generally recognized as the island nation's cultural capital and is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The town, and the countryside around it, is lush and green and there are many pleasant walk around the place and further afield. The town centre, close to Kandy’s picturesque lake set in a bowl of hills, is a delightful jumble of old shops, antiques and gemstone specialists, a bustling market, and a very good selection of hotels, guesthouses and restaurants. As the night falls, the city becomes serenly quiet.

Just north of the Kandy Lake, the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic houses Sri Lanka's most important Buddhist relic, a tooth of the Buddha. There are the principal Viharas or Buddhist complexes   which have considerable importance as in the Malwatte Maha Vihara complex. The Asgiriya Maha Vihara temple complex has a large reclining Buddha image and is also the headquarters of two of the main nikayas, or orders of Buddhist monks. The National Museum once housed the Kandyan royal concubines and now features the royal regalia and reminders of pre-European Sinhalese life. A bewildering centrepiece for the town is the Kandy Lake, which is encircled by a cemented footpath dotted with benches. The Tea Museum has exhibits on tea pioneers and lots of vintage tea-processing paraphernalia. The Udawwatakelle Sanctuary is a forested area with huge trees, interesting bird-watching and loads of cheeky monkeys to bring cheer to your faces on the Sri Lanka Holiday Package!

Sri Lanka is a land of waterfalls with plenty of rivers and streams, whereby the country boasts of the highest waterfall density in the world. However, only a small number of waterfalls can be viewed with ease since the majority are positioned amidst thick lush forests and tea plantations.

Completing its rich and diverse countryside are the numerous cascading falls that can be found throughout the country. With beautiful and pristine waters flowing through the rocks, guests to the country are in for a natural treat. Many of the most prominent and breathtaking waterfalls are located in the Rathnapura and Nuwara Eliya districts, scattered around the south-west and southern parts of the country. The folktales that accompany most waterfalls adds an aura of mystique to these magnificent natural wonders, which should not be missed on an entourage. The Devon Falls are known as the Pearl of the Indian Ocean, and a tourist’s paradise, boasting of crystal clear blue waters, pristine beaches, stunning lakes and rivers as well as stunning mountains, engulfing the remarkable waterfalls which further compliment the sheer beauty of the land. These Falls can also be reached via the Hatton-Nuwara Eliya road. The wide open space in front of the waterfall makes it look even more gigantic. Therefore, many national and international travellers visiting make it a point to stop at this stunning roadside waterfall to take in its beauty.  revel in the season of flowers, pony races, go cart races and auto rally. This exceptionally picturesque panorama can be witnessed at ease, and is renowned for offering its viewers a perfect sketch that will be etched in their minds forever.

Nuwara Eliya is a city in the hill country of the Central Province of Sri Lanka, and the name is interpreted as a “city on the plain or table land" or a "city of light". One of the distinctive features of Nuwara Eliya's countryside is the widespread growing of vegetables, fruit and flowers usually associated with temperate Europe, and this `Little England’ is covered with terraces growing potatoes, carrots, leeks, and roses, interspersed with tea bushes on the steeper slopes, as the tourists revel in the season of flowers, pony races, go cart races and auto rally. This exceptionally picturesque panorama can be Witnessed at ease, and is heralded for offering its viewers a perfect sketch that will be etched in their minds forever.

The slow growing tea bushes of this highland region produce some of the world’s finest Orange Pekoe tea, a famed product of the region for purchase. The town's attractions include the golf course, trout streams, Victoria Park, and boating or fishing on Lake Gregory. Victoria Park is an attractive and well-used oasis. It is popular with birdwatchers at quieter times because of the good opportunities it gives to see the various species. The city is a base for visits to the Horton Plains National Park which is a key wildlife area of open grassy woodland. Species found here include the leopard, sambar and the endemic purple-faced langur.  Other highland birds include the Dull-blue Flycatcher, Sri Lanka White-eye and the Yellow-eared Bulbul.   The plains also have a well-visited tourist attraction at World's End, a sheer precipice with a 1050 m drop. The return walk from here passes the scenic Baker Falls, where early morning visits are the best, both to see the wild-life, and to view World's End before mists closes in during the latter part of the morning The Seetha Amman Temple is located in the village called `Seethe Eliya’, to be revered as the place where Sitha was held captive by the King Ravana, as highlighted in the grand epic `Ramayana’.  Surrounded by lush tea plantations the Nuwara Eliya is the main hill resort of Sri Lanka and the heart of the tea industry and was once a pleasure retreat of the European planters, with English-style bungalows and buildings, appreciated and admired by all even today!

The Botanic Gardens at Hagkala are situated above sea level, as these gardens lie in the hill country amongst  tea plantations towards the south-east  in Nuwara Eliya,  in the shadow of the Hakgala Rock which means Elephant’s jaw rock towering to an amazing height behind the gardens and the surrounding forest reserves like a solitary giant. The gardens take the shape of several terraces upon the lower slopes of the rock and face the Uva Valley, across which great vies of the Madulsima and Namunukula range of mountains can be seen in the distant landscape. The climate of the Gardens is subtropical, cool and fresh, containing an alpine atmosphere.

St. Clair’s Falls, one of the widest waterfalls and referred to as the `Little Niagara of Sri Lanka’, derived its name from the nearby tea estate. This beautiful gift from Mother Nature is a sight worth viewing. Travel to the hill country and you may be awed by its majestic beauty as it cascades in shimmering white clouds down the lush foliage around.

Shopping:

Products that are worth buying in Sri Lanka include world famous Ceylon tea, clothing and jewellery, including the Sri Lankan blue sapphire. In Colombo, quality is generally assured at the higher end stores, and the House of Fashions with clothes, accessories and Odel, an upscale store featuring high quality designer labels of clothing, candles, Sri Lankan tea, jewellery, trinkets and some artefacts, are very popular with the habitants and tourists. The Crescat Boulevard is a fashionable, upscale shopping centre, food court and grocery store while Barefoot is a handicraft store, has a wide range of good quality souvenirs and handmade items, clothes, bags, and children toys, from some of the most beautifully-colored fabric that you have ever seen. Pettah is situated on the outskirts of the fort area and its pavements are full of small stalls selling delicious sherbet to shirts to clothes and handicrafts. The First Cross Street has electronic goods shops and the Second Cross Street has cellular phones and fancy goods. At the end of the street further away from Fort is the Sea Street, Sri Lanka’s Gold Market,That is surrounded by jewellery shops. Most of the said products may also be found on the beach resorts, mentioned above!

Cuisine:

For the night owl's Sri Lanka’s nightlife is at par with most other Asian destinations and features a number of nightlife establishments, that offer decent music and drinks, served in a pleasant atmosphere, such as  the Kelaniya Temple, in Colombo, which is a splendid example of Buddhist architecture and art. At the temple entrance there is the striking ‘Makara Thorana' archway,  a symbol of protection in local mythology, with a stylized depiction of animals combined into an elaborate

Pattern. It has the trunk of an elephant, the body of a fish, the feet of a lion, the ears of a hog, the teeth of a monkey and the tail of a swan. Sounds strange, but such is the charm of this complex! The Cricket

Club Cafe,   is a must for any cricket lover with its walls covered in autographed memorabilia and photos with sports, usually cricket, being screened on all the TV’s scattered throughout the rooms, serving authentic Aussie cuisine and a wide variety of drinks. The Bar is named after Donald Bradman. The Gallery Cafe, with a wonderful atmosphere is a beautiful building, designed by famous Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa, having a large food menu featuring many international dishes, decadent desserts and extensive cocktail menu. The Lagoon restaurant focuses primarily on seafood with colorful Sri Lankan flavours and the friendly, professional staffs is able to create a joyous dining experience. The Mango Tree, is the finest restaurant in the city with North Indian Cuisine, full of innovative dishes, and

Chesa Swiss, representing the best of Swiss cuisine, has all your favourites from fresh garden snails to Chateaubriand for two to steak Café de Paris style! The wine list is exclusively Swiss. The beach resorts and islands are also perfectly equipped to cater to palettes with varying tastes, Indian and International!

Climate:

Sri Lanka features a tropical rainforest climate and is fairly temperate throughout the year. The monsoon seasons vary from May to August and October to January when heavy rains can be expected and the winter months are drier than usual.

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