Discover the “Indian Pearl” Sri Lanka , a country of 4000 years civilization, by bike. Amazing landscape that changes the skyline and a wide choice of options are waiting for you. The wide variety of the Island will fill up your mind with remarkable diversity of cultures, languages, ancient villages and historical buildings. Experience the very traditional and authentic , friendly people , the beautiful inner-country and the even more beautiful coastline in the south-west of the Island.
Tour profile / Level 2
90% of the roads in this itinerary will be Tarmac and the rest of the 10% is with little gravel roads. There is always the support vehicle which will accompany all bikers the whole cycling legs so you´ll have the opportunity to switch whenever you want to the van. We also recommend to bring your own, well fitted helmet and wear it throughout the whole cycling trip.
Day 1: Airport – Habarana
Your individual flight arrives at Bandaranaike International Airport and we transfer you to Habarana, (approx.. 4 hours) where we stay for the next 2 nights.
Day 2: Habarana Roundtrip, approx.. 23 km
After breakfast, we ride along back roads to Sigiriya in the morning we climb the 5th Century Rock Fortress of Sigiriya to see the beautiful frescoes painted onto the rock face (not recommended for those who suffer from vertigo). The ruins of the palace on the summit are surpassed only by the magnificent aerial view of the surrounding jungle. Rest at the afternoon at the hotel for a couple of hours. In the evening proceed for a bird watching session. Make the journey to the Birdwatching in Sri Lanka and greet the diverse avian life present in the area as you explore in search of rare birds. Catch glimpses of bright plumage amongst the greenery and try to identify them. Also get a chance to see some of the other wildlife. Back to the hotel. (180 hm)
Day 3: Habarana – Polonnaruwa, approx.. 39 km
After breakfast Proceed to Dambulla. Dambulla is a vast isolated rock mass 500ft high and a mile around the base. Here is found the famous Rock Temple dating to the First Century BC. The caves of Dambulla sheltered the King Walagamba during his 14 years of exile from Anuradhapura. When he regained the throne he built the most magnificent of Rock Temples to be found on the Island. In the first Cave is a recumbent image of the Buddha 47ft long cut out of the Rock. Afterwards transfer to Minneriya Junction by the coach and then start cycling up to the lunch. The lunch place is a typical Sri Lankan village house. You can interact with the locals and engage in a cooking activity prior to having lunch and then enjoy a Sri Lankan village lunch with the local family members. Later we tour the old ruined city of Polonnaruwa, which dates from the 10-13th Centuries. Then transfer to the hotel and relax for a while. For those who fancy a swim, the hotel also has a swimming pool, a pleasant place to spend the hot early afternoon. (90 hm)
Day 4: Polonnaruwa – Kandy, approx.. 30 km
We follow the local lake’s man-made 6km dam and feeder canal to its source, the Amban Ganga River. Then you reach Bakamuna and from there take the coach to Matale. We enter the spice growing region of Sri Lanka. Those who feel like an easy day can jump onto the bus for the 30km trip to Kandy, while the rest of us pedal away, riding through the Moorish town of Matale. Its inhabitants, descendants from Arab spice traders, still control most of the spice market, which is a good place to pick up some freshly ground curry powder. As Kandy’s roads are as old as the city itself, we may have to drive the last few kilometres to avoid the traffic. (500 hm)
Day 5: Kandy Sightseeing
Proceed by coach to the historic city of Kandy, the spiritual and cultural capital of the hill country. Surrounded by hills, the town is centered around a small lake and the Temple of the Tooth. The afternoon is free to wander through the streets and markets. Half way through the journey you get in to the coach and proceed to Kandy.
Visit the Royal Botanical Garden. This botanical garden was first built as a pleasure garden by a Sinhala king and was expanded by the British. It is 147 acres in extent and provides an amazing variety of trees, plants and flowers and the beautiful avenues and Sprawling lawns are breathtaking./ Cost Per Person – USD 10.00 , booking and paying locally
In the evening visit a famous local pub in the Kandy city and you can experience the way of local life in Kandy. (booking and paying locally) It will be a different experience for you as you can see how people get together in the evening to spend time with their friends while sipping a beer in their hand.
Visit the Temple of tooth relic A free day to explore the town. Kandy has many interesting attractions including the wonderful Botanical Gardens, the famous Temple of the Tooth, and streets lined with interesting curio shops. The surrounding hills are dotted with wonderful temples.
Cost Per Person – USD 10.00
Day 6: Kandy - Knuckles
Proceed to knuckles. The campsite is located 1½ Km off Thangappuwa which is the main entrance to the Knuckles Mountain Range from Theldeniya via Kandy. Also known as Dumbara mountain, Knuckles is located off Kandy, in the northern end of Central Highlands of Sri Lanka. Known as one of the most beautiful nature attractions of the island and named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the terrain of grasslands and rugged mountain peaks scattered with streams and waterfalls that cover an area of 18512 hectares, enables Knuckles mountain range to be a trekker’s paradise. Proceed to do the knuckles trek. The Knuckles Mountain Range is considered one of the toughest hiking trails in the country and is best attempted by those with prior experience in hiking. That being said, no matter how experienced you are, it’s mandatory to have a guide. Besides the area’s vastness and the possibility of getting lost, hikers are only allowed to enter the protected reserve with a qualified guide. Back to the campsite.
Day 7: Knuckles - Nuwara Eliya, approx. 30 km
Breakfast at the hotel and proceed towards Nuwara Eliya via Teldeniya, Medamahanuwara, Rikillagaskada to Nuwara Eliya. For the first part of the ride we take the old road, a far more pleasant route, and one of the few places where you see terraced paddy fields. Beyond the paddy fields is tea country and the area is reputed to produce the finest teas on the island. Those who like to experience cycling in the uphill can cycle up to Medamahanuwara and get in to the coach and complete journey to Nuwara Eliya. (1868 hm)
Day 8: Nuwara Eliya , approx.. 10 km
Breakfast at the hotel. Proceed to visit Victoria Park . In the evening Visit Victoria Park The Victoria Park of Nuwara Eliya was said to be named to Commemorate the 60th Jubilee Coronation of Queen Victoria in the year 1897. It is known that this park was established by planting an Oak tree by a German Princes who visited Nuwara Eliya at the latter part of the 19th Century.The park is 27 acres in extent and about 90% of the tree species available are those of foreign plants. Nanu Oya which flows through the park and a number of lakes within it enhances its beauty. A large number of rare bird species can be found in the park. The park is a great tourist attraction in Nuwara Eliya.Victoria park is a place to relax and enjoy the natural sights and clean mountain air. This place is famous for bird watching and there there are large verities of plants and trees available. Cycle to Pedro Tea Factory After a leisure walk around Gregory´s Lake back to the hotel. (1868 hm)
Day 9: Nuwara Eliya – Tissamaharama, approx. 55 km
Proceed to Ella by cycling and if incline cycling is a bit challenging the non-cyclists can take the train from Nanu Oya to Ella and then meet the cyclists at Ella and then continue the tour. (Approx 05 Hrs)
22 Kms – Downhill
20 Kms – Mix of Uphill and Downhill
10 Kms – Downhill
3 Kms - Uphill
Descending 1000m we leave the breathtaking scenery of Uva Province for the gentle rolling hills of the dry zone, stopping at the impressive rock-cut Buddha Statues at Buduruvagala. The giant 15m rock carving of Buddha is flanked by small figures depicting his helpers and a very rare image of Maitreya, the future Buddha, which dates from the 10th Century. The tranquility of the place is enhanced by the lotus‐covered lake; we will relax on the lakeside banks and enjoy some fresh fruit before the lunch. You will take the coach up to Tissamaharama.
Cycle Approx. 55 km +1040km.
Day 10: Tissamaharama Roundtrip, approx. 20 km
In the morning we cycle to Kataragama temple, which lies 16km northeast of Tissa. People of all faiths come to seek favour with the god Skanda, who is reputed to restore people’s health. The colourful and noisy pooja is always busy, with thousands of pilgrims during the festival season from July- August. Tissa is close to Yala National Park, the best park in Sri Lanka to see leopard. After lunch we have a safari in the park, when we may see elephant, deer, wild boar, sloth bear, asian jackal, lots of birdlife and if very lucky a leopard. We return to Tissa for the night (please note that the sanctuary may be closed for 4-6 weeks from September to October allowing the park authorities to check the animals. We therefore go to an alternative area close by, usually the Udawalawe National Park). (318 hm)
Day 11: Tissamaharama – Ahangama, approx.. 35 km
Leaving early to avoid the heat of the dry zone, we ride along the boundary of Bundala Bird Sanctuary. During certain times of the year thousands of flamingos can be seen wading in the brackish shallows, eyed up by crocodiles, basking in the early morning sun. We hit the main road for the final 30km to Hambantota, a series of sandy bays fanning out from this typical coastal town. Transfer from Hambantota to Ahangama by coach. For the next 2 nights we stay in Ahangama. (19 hm)
Day 12: Ahangama Sightseeing
Relax at the hotel or join a late morning ride along rural roads to the village of Wanduraba and then transfer to a small temple to back before returning via Koggala Lake and then transfer to the hotel. At the temple you can worship Lord Buddha and Buddhist monk will give you the blessings with chanting pirith. This afternoon is free to explore the beach area or swim and laze by the pool, late afternoon the stilt fishermen climb their poles to catch a few bites for supper which is worth a watch. Late afternoon we can enjoy some sun‐downers followed by evening seafood BBQ at the hotel. From November to April you can also go whale watching off Dondra head, near Mirissa, which is one of the best places in the world for seeing blue and sperm whales. Huge pods of dolphins are also often seen accompanying the boats. If you are going for whale watching you need to do leave the hotel early morning.
water sports activities or
a whale and dolphin watching tour in Mirissa which has to be as early as leaving the hotel around 6:30 am as the boats leave at 7:00 am. Approximately it will take 3 -3 ½ hrs for the whale watching program. Then clients will be returned back to the hotel around 11.00am. (This will vary according to the weather conditions/ time taken to witness the whales by the clients ect.) This can be done only on day 14 early in the morning. If so you will have to do the Galle Excursion late in the morning. / Cost Per Person – USD 65.00 , bookable and payable locally
Whale watching is seasonal and sighting whales can be arranged only during the period of NOVEMBER – APRIL
Day 13: Ahangama - Colombo
Leaving mid morning, we will stop to visit Galle. The Old Dutch fort was built in 1663 after the Dutch took the island from the Portuguese. The old ramparts and small back streets bring alive some of the history of the fight for colonial domination of this prized island. You’re free to find your own lunch, meeting back at the bus at 2.30pm for the 2hr drive to Colombo, arriving late afternoon. The rest of the day is free to relax by the pool or shop along the main street. For the last evening meal we can choose from one of the many restaurants in Colombo.
Optional – You can visit an Orphanage close by and do a service project to the small kids who lives in the orphanage.
Day 14: Colombo, approx. 3 ½ hours transfer
Morning transfer to the airport. Individual departure.