This small group tour is a superb introduction to the wildlife and beautiful scenery of Sri Lanka. A treat for the animal enthusiast, it offers the chance to see elephants and the elusive leopard as well as marine life on the island’s south coast. In the different national parks you will be guided by a naturalist who is an expert in the flora and fauna of their park, allowing you to explore in depth.

• Mount Lavinia: 1 night

• Nuwara Eliya: 1 night

• Yala: 2 nights

• Udawalawe: 1 night

• Deniyaya: 1 night

• Tangalle: 1 night

• Galle: 1 night

• Mount Lavinia: 1 night

10nights Escorted Small Group Tour
NATURE
CULTURE
ACTIVE

This small group tour is a superb introduction to the wildlife and beautiful scenery of Sri Lanka. A treat for animal enthusiasts, it offers the chance to see elephants and the elusive leopard as well as marine life on the island’s south coast. In the different national parks you will be guided by a naturalist who is an expert in the flora and fauna of their park.

• Colombo: 1 night

• Nuwara Eliya: 1 night

• Yala: 2 nights

• Udawalawe: 1 night

• Kalawana: 1 night
• Galle: 2 nights

For departures 02 and 16 Feb 2018
• Colombo: 1 night

• Nuwara Eliya: 1 night

• Yala: 2 nights

• Udawalawe: 1 night

• Kalawana: 1 night

• Tangalle: 1 night
• Galle: 1 night

9nights Escorted Small Group Tour
NATURE
CULTURE
ACTIVE
 
 
ITINERARY

Day 1: UK to Mount Lavinia Depart from the UK on your overnight flight to Sri Lanka.

Day 2: Mount Lavinia On arrival transfer to the Mount Lavinia where you have some time to relax. One of our closest hotels to Colombo, the Mount Lavinia is famed worldwide for its colonial charm and amazing location. This evening there will be a welcome dinner at Nuga Gama Restaurant at the nearby Cinnamon Grand Hotel. During your meal you’ll get to meet your group and tour leader in a relaxed and social atmosphere. Approx journey time: 1¼ hours; 31 miles. Stay: Mount Lavinia. D.

Day 3: Mount Lavinia to Nuwara Eliya This morning it’s onwards deep into the island’s beautiful hill country. Drive to Nuwara Eliya, stopping for lunch at Kitulgala where the film The Bridge Over the River Kwai was filmed. This afternoon join a tour of the city of Nuwara Eliya. Set in a mountain valley some 1800 metres above sea level, it is surrounded by rolling hills covered in vast tea plantations Approx. journey time 4½ hours, 124 miles. Stay: Jetwing St Andrew’s. B, L, D.

Day 4: Nuwara Eliya to Yala After an early departure you’ll arrive at Horton Plains National Park. The plains are characterised by rolling hills, forest and grasslands and are undoubtedly one of Sri Lanka’s best eco-tourism venues and nature reserves. It is home to an array of wildlife and is ideal for bird watchers with over 87 species, 14 of which are endemic. A three-hour trek over relatively challenging terrain takes you to the renowned World’s End precipice where you can enjoy incredible views over the surrounding countryside. You’ll then continue your journey south to Yala National Park. Get as close to the wildlife as you can with a stay at Cinnamon Wild Yala which spans 10 acres of jungle and beach. Approx. journey time: 4½ hours, 118 miles. Stay: Cinnamon Wild Yala. B, D.

Day 5: Yala Today’s exploration of the world-famous Yala National Park is a real highlight of the tour. It is known locally as leopard country as it plays host to one of the world’s highest density of leopards. You will rise early for morning 4x4 safari into the park before returning to the hotel for some free time. Later in the afternoon there’ll be another trip into the park – hopefully you’ll get to see some of the species you didn’t get to see earlier in the day. Stay: Cinnamon Wild. B, D.

Day 6: Yala to Udawalawe This morning depart for Udawalawe. Enjoy lunch at Athgira, a local restaurant serving Sri Lankan specialties, which sits just across the road from the Elephant Transit Home, the next stop on your tour. The transit home was established by the Sri Lanka Department of Wildlife Conservation in 1995 as a rehabilitation centre and here you’ll find a number of orphaned elephants being cared for before being released into the wild. There is a small museum to explore and you’ll receive a talk from one of the carers. Although you won’t get to interact with the elephants, this half-hour visit is a great opportunity to see the animals and discover the important and tireless work that’s done to get them back into the wild. Approx. journey time: 2 hours, 56 miles. Stay: Grand Udawalawe Safari Resort. B, L, D.

Day 7: Udawalawe to Deniyaya You’ll depart today before breakfast for an early morning safari in Udawalawe National Park. Lightly vegetated, the park is one of the best places in Sri Lanka to spot a variety of wildlife species including buffalo, elephants, and occasionally a leopard or two. After the game drive you’ll transfer to the Rainforest Eco Lodge in the Sinharaja rainforest in Deniyaya. The only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site in Sri Lanka, the Sinharaja rainforest offers guests the chance to walk amongst beautiful flora and fauna. This afternoon you will enjoy your first trek into the rainforest with the hotel’s naturalist (1-1½ hours). The night will be spent at the unique Rainforest Ecolodge – a wonderful sustainable lodge which has been designed to make as minimal impact on the surroundings as possible. Approx. journey time: 1½ hours, 45 miles. Stay: Rainforest Ecolodge. B, D.

Day 8: Deniyaya to Tangalle Following a leisurely breakfast travel south towards the coast and the beach resort of Tangalle. The rest of the day is free to relax. Following dinner you will be picked up from your hotel and transferred to Rekawa, one of the most important sea turtle nesting sites in Sri Lanka where, depending on the time of year, you may be lucky enough to see a turtle nesting on the beach or even watch hatchlings make their way to the ocean. Approx. journey time: 2 hours, 50 miles. Stay: Sooriya Resort. B, D.

Day 9: Tangalle to Galle Rise early this morning for the final wildlife-watching opportunity of the tour – an unforgettable whale-watching excursion. Join a three-and-a-half-hour cruise which departs from the town of Mirissa, on the island’s south coast. The blue whales – the earth’s largest creatures – are the real draw off the part of this Sri Lanka coast, however you may also be lucky enough to spot orca, humpback whales, turtles and dolphins. On return to dry land continue along the coast to the walled city of Galle. Your time here is free to explore the beautiful Old Town and its fortifications. Approx. journey time: 1½ hours; 43 miles. Stay: Lady Hill. B, L, D.

Day 10: Galle to Mount Lavinia After a late breakfast you will travel back north to Mount Lavinia for your final night, following a short city tour if time allows. En route you’ll visit the Galaboda Tea Factory to discover the history of one of the island’s most important exports. If you have chosen to extend your stay on the island’s south or south west coast you will transfer straight to your chosen resort from Galle instead of returning to Mount Lavinia. Approx. journey time 2 hours, 81 miles. Stay: Mount Lavinia. B, L, D.

Day 11: Mount Lavinia to UK Transfer to the airport (approx. journey time: 1 hour, 40 miles) for your flight to the UK. B.


Stay longer

Sri Lanka beach 3 nights

Kick back and relax after your tour with a short beach stay on one of Sri Lanka’s beautiful golden beaches.

Maldives 3 nights

Relax in paradise on your chosen Maldivian Island. Snorkel, dive or just dig your toes into the powder soft sand.

Day 1: UK to Colombo Depart from the UK on your overnight flight to Sri Lanka.

Day 2: Colombo On arrival in Colombo transfer to your hotel where you will stay one night. This evening there will be a welcome dinner at Nuga Gama Restaurant at the hotel. During your meal you’ll get to meet your group and tour leader in a relaxed and social atmosphere. Approx. journey time: 1¼ hours; 25 miles. Stay: Cinnamon Grand (or similar). D.

Day 3: Colombo to Nuwara Eliya This morning it’s onwards deep into the island’s beautiful Hill Country. Drive to Nuwara Eliya, stopping for lunch at Kitulgala where the film The Bridge Over the River Kwai was filmed. This afternoon join a tour of the city of Nuwara Eliya. Set in a mountain valley some 1800 metres above sea level, it is surrounded by rolling hills covered in vast tea plantations Approx. journey time: 5½ hours, 112 miles. Stay: Jetwing St Andrew’s (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 4: Nuwara Eliya to Yala After an early departure you’ll arrive at Horton Plains National Park. The plains are characterised by rolling hills, forest and grasslands and are undoubtedly one of Sri Lanka’s best eco-tourism venues and nature reserves. It is home to an array of wildlife and is ideal for bird watchers with over 87 species, 14 of which are endemic. A three-hour trek over relatively challenging terrain takes you to the renowned World’s End precipice where you can enjoy incredible views over the surrounding countryside. You’ll then continue your journey south to Yala National Park, stopping for lunch en route. On arrival, spend the afternoon relaxing and enjoying the facilities at your hotel. Approx. journey time: 4½ hours, 105 miles. Stay: Jetwing Yala (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 5: Yala Today’s exploration takes you back into Yala National Park – a real highlight of the tour. It’s known locally as leopard country as it plays host to one of the world’s highest densities of leopards. Rise early for a morning 4x4 safari into the park before returning to the hotel where you can spend the rest of the day relaxing by the pool or on the beach. This evening head back into the park for another game drive. Stay: Jetwing Yala (or similar). B, D.

Day 6: Yala to Embilipitiya This morning head back inland to another of Sri Lanka’s famed national parks – beautiful Udawalawe. Enjoy lunch at Athgira, a local restaurant serving Sri Lankan specialties, which sits just across the road from the Elephant Transit Home, the next stop on your tour. The transit home was established by the Sri Lanka Department of Wildlife Conservation in 1995 as a rehabilitation centre and is funded by Born Free. Here you’ll find a number of orphaned elephants being cared for before being released into the wild. Although you won’t get to interact with the elephants, this half-hour visit is a great opportunity to see the animals and discover the important and tireless work that’s done to get them back into the wild. Continue on for an afternoon safari in Udawalawe National Park. Lightly vegetated, the park is one of the best places in Sri Lanka to spot a variety of wildlife species including buffalo, elephants, and occasionally a leopard or two. Travel south to the town of Embilipitiya, one hour south of the national park, where tonight’s hotel is located. Approx. journey time: 3 hours, 65 miles. Stay: Centauria Hotel (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 7: Embilipitiya to Kalawana Following breakfast, the tour continues onwards to your next hotel, a tranquil property that’s located close to Kalawana, a small town close to the edge of the beautiful Sinharaja Forest Reserve. This tropical virgin rain forest is the only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site and biosphere reserve in Sri Lanka and it’s an incredible place to experience endemic flora and fauna species. This afternoon, head out on a rainforest trek with a knowledgeable naturalist (1-1½ hours). The trails may be wet under foot so be sure to pack suitable footwear. Approx. journey time: 2½ hours, 59 miles. Stay: Rainforest Edge (or similar). B, D.

Day 8: Kalawana to Galle There’s an early start this morning as you set off on a jeep ride into the Sinharaja reserve. You’ll have the opportunity to see more of the forest and spot endemic birds before your journey to the beautiful coastal city of Galle. On arrival, proceed to the Lady Hill Hotel for a lunch that will be accompanied by fantastic views over the city. A short introductory tour of Galle will follow, taking in the beautiful Old Town and its fortifications, before you return to your hotel for the evening. Approx. journey time 2¼ hours, 56 miles. Stay: Lady Hill (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 8 for departures 02 and 16 Feb 2018: Kalawana to Galle Following breakfast visit the village of Deniyaya where you can learn about the culture of the local people and enjoy a brief visit to a local school. Continue on to Tangalle where you will spend one night. From here head to the Rekawa Turtle Hatchery. Approx. journey time: 1 hour 50 minutes. Stay: Sooriya Resort (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 9: Galle If you are travelling between November and April you’ll have the opportunity to join an unforgettable whale-watching excursion. This three-and-a-half-hour cruise departs from the town of Mirissa (approx. journey time: 1 hour, 29 miles), on the island’s south coast. The blue whales – the earth’s largest creatures – are the real draw off the part of this Sri Lanka coast, however you may also be lucky enough to spot orca, humpback whales, turtles and dolphins. For those travelling between mid-April and October the morning will be free to explore Galle at your own pace or enjoy the facilities at the hotel. Later, the group will travel along the west coast to the Kosgoda Sea Turtle Conservation Project where they monitor sea turtle activity and conserve the local nesting sites. During the visit you will learn about the life cycle of the green and Hawksbill turtles and about the work that they carry out to protect the turtles. This includes collecting eggs, hatching the turtles away from predators and man-made dangers, releasing them back into the wild and ensuring the nesting beaches remain clear of any hazards. Return to Galle for your final evening and a special farewell dinner at your hotel. Approx. journey time: 1½ hours, 38 miles. Stay: Lady Hill (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 9 for departures 02 and 16 Feb 2018: Tangalle to Galle If you are travelling between November and April you’ll have the opportunity to join an optional and unforgettable whale-watching excursion. This three-and-a-half-hour cruise departs from the town of Mirissa (approx. journey time: 1 hour, 29 miles), on the island’s south coast. The blue whales – the earth’s largest creatures – are the real draw off the part of this Sri Lanka coast, however you may also be lucky enough to spot orca, humpback whales, turtles and dolphins. Form here continue on to Galle where you will have lunch at the Lady Hill Hotel before proceeding on a introductory city of Galle. Stay: Lady Hill (or similar). B, L, D.

Day 10: Galle Transfer to the airport (approx. journey time 2½ hours, 93 miles) for you return flight to the UK. B.


Stay longer

Sri Lanka beach 3 nights

Kick back and relax after your tour with a short beach stay on one of Sri Lanka’s beautiful golden beaches.

Maldives 3 nights

Relax in paradise on your chosen Maldivian Island. Snorkel, dive or just dig your toes into the powder soft sand.

ABOUT THIS TOUR

Is this for you?

If you have a particular interest in wildlife then this is the tour for you – there will be visits to fauna-rich national parks as well as unique wildlife-watching experiences.

Good to know

• All departures are guaranteed

• For guests over 16 (unless travelling on a private journey)

• Average group size of 7 guests

• A maximum of 14 guests.

What to expect

• A range of safari vehicles, both uncovered and covered

• Bring long sleeves, trousers and sensible shoes for the rainforest

• The Horton Plains trek is recommended for energetic individuals

• There are active experiences and early starts included so a relatively high level of fitness is recommended.

Themed itinerary

Private tour Upgrade to a private tour with a local tour leader on the same itinerary, departing on the date of your choice from £578 per person, ref IO0794.

Is this for you?

If you have a particular interest in wildlife then this is the tour for you – there will be visits to fauna-rich national parks as well as unique wildlife-watching experiences.

Good to know

• All departures are guaranteed

• For guests over 16 (unless travelling on a private journey)

• Average group size of 7 guests
• A maximum of 14 guests.

What to expect

• A range of safari vehicles, both uncovered and covered

• Bring long sleeves, trousers and sensible shoes for the rainforest

• The Horton Plains trek is recommended for energetic individuals

• A relatively high level of fitness is recommended

• The optional whale-watching excursion are available seasonally from November to April.

Accommodation on tour

The hotels have been chosen for their proximity to nature. In Yala we have chose the Jetwing Yala, a popular resort that’s located on the beach and just ten minutes drive from the entrance to the national park. The Centuria Hotel sits on the shore of the Chandrika Lake while the property in Kalawana, Rainforest Edge, really lives up to its name.

Single travellers

Single room supplement from £580

DATES AND INCLUSIONS

Tour dates

Jan 06, 20; Feb 03, 17; Mar 03, 17, 31; Apr 07, 21; Nov 10, 17, 24; Dec 01, 15

Included in price

• Quality accommodation

• Insightful local tour leaders

• Hand-picked itineraries

• Flexible arrival times

• Small groups and a relaxed approach

• Porterage and guide tips

• Meals where most convenient (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner), or the freedom to explore local restaurants independently

• All specified flights.

Upgrade your tour

Private tour Upgrade to a private tour with a local tour leader on the same itinerary, departing on the date of your choice from £422 per person, ref IO0794.

Tour dates

2018 Jan 19; Feb 02, 16; Mar 02; Apr 06, 20; Nov 09, 23, 30

Included in price

• Quality accommodation

• Insightful local tour leaders

• Hand-picked itineraries

• Flexible arrival times

• Small groups and a relaxed approach

• Porterage and guide tips

• Meals where most convenient (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner), or the freedom to explore local restaurants independently
• All specified flights.

Special offer
From
£2195
 
ESCORTED SMALL GROUP TOUR
Price per person for 9 nights
A treat for animal enthusiasts & superb
introduction to Sri Lanka's wildlife
Escorted small group tour departs 19 Jan & 16 Feb 2018
 
Fly with Sri Lankan Airlines from London Heathrow

Sri Lanka Wildlife Tour

Why Kuoni?

This is a true wildlife tour which focuses not on the island’s main sights but its natural habitats and the animal species. It also goes beyond the renowned Yala National Park, with rainforest explorations, whale watching and soft trekking in the nation’s hill country. You’ll visit a rehabilitation home for orphaned elephants, join a trek into native rainforest and visit one of the most important turtle nesting sites in Sri Lanka.

Why Kuoni?

This is a true wildlife tour which focuses not on the island’s main sights but its natural habitats and the animal species. It also goes beyond the renowned Yala National Park, with rainforest explorations, optional whale watching and soft trekking in the nation’s hill country. You’ll visit a rehabilitation home for orphaned elephants, join a trek into native rainforest and visit one of the most important turtle nesting sites in Sri Lanka.

Request a brochure

Escorted Tours 2018