Top seven places for Sri Lanka cultural holiday package

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Sri Lanka cultural holiday package

The most effective method of gaining knowledge about the extensive history of Sri Lanka is to undertake a cultural triangle tour of Sri Lanka. This article enumerates the seven most significant cultural sites in Sri Lanka that one should visit during a cultural excursion in the country.

The seven most significant cultural sites in Sri Lanka for cultural excursions

Sri Lanka was home to one of the most ancient civilizations on earth. Significantly, Sri Lankan culture has endured for millennia, notwithstanding the incursions of South India and Europe. It is believed that the Yaksas and Nagas, two Stone Age tribes that inhabited Sri Lanka, are the progenitors of Sri Lankan culture. Popular culture designates this small group of surviving descendants of these people as the “Vedda community” in Sri Lanka.
Following this, the prehistoric inhabitants of Sri Lanka assimilated numerous cultures to produce a culture with numerous distinguishing characteristics. Sri Lanka has thus become recognised as the cradle and birthplace of one of the most significant civilizations in the world.
Sri Lanka is a popular destination among global travellers due to its abundant cultural heritage and its collection of over six UNESCO world heritage locations. A wide variety of traditions and cultures enrich Sri Lankan culture. Numerous locations, including temples and churches, on the island discuss the same subject.
Sri Lanka’s tourism industry encompasses cultural tourism, which offers excursions beyond the country’s verdant highlands, palm-fringed coastlines, and the enchanting healing properties of Ayurveda. Cultural tourists who visit Sri Lanka have the opportunity to explore authentic culinary trails, ancient cultural sites, and a vast array of artistic mediums.
This compilation of ten cultural sites in Sri Lanka exemplifies the nation’s awe-inspiring architectural prowess and abundant cultural heritage. It is ideal for culture vultures who wish to explore a selection of the country’s cultural monuments.

Top 7 Cultural landmarks in Sri Lanka

  • Anuradhapura
  • Polonnaruwa
  • The Colombo
  • The Sigiriya
  • The Dambulla
  • The Kandy
  • Nuwara Eliya

Which are the top five cultural tour packages in Sri Lanka?

  1. A visit to Colombo’s Gangarama Temple and Wovendaal Church
  2. A Sri Lanka tour of two days to study in Sigiriya, Dambulla, and Pollannaruwa
  3. Cultural excursions for two days to Sigiriya, Dambulla, and Kandy
  4. Kandy, Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya, and Dambulla comprise a three-day cultural tour.
  5. A one-day cultural excursion of Galle, Sri Lanka

Five alternative destinations in Sri Lanka for cultural excursions

  1. Expedition to Adams Peak
  2. A cultural excursion to the Pidurangala Cave temple
  3. A cultural excursion to the Aukana Buddha monument
  4. A visit to the Kataragama Temple
  5. Seetha Amman Temple

Visiting Anuradhapura on a Sri Lanka cultural holiday package

Five hours are required to travel from the airport to the cultural metropolis of Anuradhapura.
Anuradhapura, established in the third century BC, is the northernmost point of Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle and the oldest city on the island, as well as one of the most prominent cultural destinations in the country. Hundreds of temples, palaces, stone sculptures, and other invaluable sites are located in Anuradhapura; therefore, the majority of Sri Lankan culture excursions include a visit there. During his reign, Walagambahu established the metropolis in the arid region of Sri Lanka’s central province.
From the tenth century AD onwards, Anuradhapura functioned as the political and military epicentre of Sri Lanka, accommodating over a hundred monarchs. As a result of the invasions from South India, the Sri Lankan monarchs largely disregarded the city. Conversely, it flourished for more than a millennium as a meticulously designed metropolis comprised of lakes, parks, palaces, temples, and an extensive road network.
Historiographers assert that the king’s residence and temples were strategically positioned in the heart of the inner city. After agricultural regions characterised by vegetable plots and rice fields, the immediate outermost stratum consisted of public accommodation. The jungle and lakes comprised the perimeter’s widest circle.
Notable attractions in Anuradhapura include the Ruwanweli dagoba and the Jetawanarama dagoba, Abhayagiriya, and Sri Maha bodhi (ficus religiosa).
For a cultural promenade throughout the city, this ancient city is home to a multitude of dilapidated monuments, in addition to those listed above. Dagobas (a type of stupa found in Buddhist temples), Buddha statues, stone sculptures, museums, and an abundance of other historical monuments make Anuradhapura one of the most significant historical destinations for studying Sri Lankan culture and heritage. Ruwanweli Seya, Isurumuniya, Thuparama, Jetawanarama, Abhayagiriya, Samadhi Buddha, and Twin Pond are the most visited locations in Anuradhapura. A stroll through the archaeological museum will provide one with a fruitful understanding of Anuradhapura’s illustrious past.
Cuisine in Sri Lanka: In addition to exploring the archaeological sites, a historical excursion to Anuradhapura should not be confined to its rich cultural heritage; one should also savour the region’s authentic Sri Lankan cuisine.

How to reach Anuradhapura

From major metropolitan areas such as Colombo and Kandy, Anuradhapura can be conveniently reached via air link. The historical site of Anuradhapura can be conveniently reached via the domestic airport located in Anuradhapura. Every day, flights depart from Colombo for Anuradhapura.
Train travel is the prevailing mode of conveyance between Colombo and Anuradhapura. Few express trains operate daily between Anuradhapura and Colombo along the railway line that connects the two cities. Train travel is economical, convenient, and quick.
The majority of foreign visitors who book package excursions or cultural tours of Sri Lanka travel to Anuradhapura by car, and they are provided with a vehicle, van, or coach to use during their travels. However, bus travel can be extraordinarily inconvenient. While public transport is affordable, it is time-consuming.

Sri Lanka cultural holiday package visiting Polonnaruwa

This cultural excursion in Sri Lanka will span a total of 230 kilometres.
The distance between the airport and the Polonnaruwa cultural capital is five hours.
Being the second-oldest capital of Sri Lanka, Polonnaruwa is among the most ideal places to learn about Sri Lanka’s customs and culture. Nissankamalla, Vijayabahu the Great, and King Parakramabahu were three notable monarchs who governed Polonnaruwa during the tenth century AD.
As a result of the Buddhist and Hindu cultures blending, the city is proud of its distinctive culture. Furthermore, during the reign of Parakramabahu, significant advancements were achieved in various domains, including literature, agriculture, water administration, culture, and religion. A multitude of noteworthy literary compositions authored by regional authorities, such as Dipawamsa and Thupawamsa, were generated throughout this period. Numerous significant irrigation projects, including Parakaramasamudra, were completed during this period.
Particularly noteworthy are the Alahana Pirivena Complex, Parakrama Samudra, Parakrama Palace, Gal Viharaya, and Ruwanweli Dagoba, which are the most frequented tourist attractions in Polonnaruwa.
Explore the city’s culture through a visit to the Polonnaruwa Archaeological Site, which contains a multitude of ancient structures such as temples, audience halls, and palaces. It has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Nakamalla, Parakramabahu, and Vijayabahu the Great, three notable monarchs, had contributed to the expansion of the city.
Other notable features of Polonnaruwa that are situated outside the ancient city limits include the Polonnaruwa history museum and the Parakramabahu statue.
Historical and cultural significance dictates that Polonnaruwa be a regular stop on cultural tours in Sri Lanka. Cycling is still a popular way to explore the city, despite some people using cars to get between landmarks.
Despite lacking recognition for its distinct gastronomic heritage, the island of Polonnaruwa is a significant producer of fruits and vegetables. Limited culinary courses are available in Polonnaruwa, with those that do cater primarily to international visitors.

Directions to get there

By road, one can travel Sri Lanka, including from Colombo to Polonnaruwa, in the most efficient manner. All major communities on the island have direct bus service to Polonnaruwa. This makes the island accessible to Colombo, Kandy, and Matara, among others.

Yapahuwa

Yapahuwa, an additional ancient city in Sri Lanka, is largely unknown to visitors. As a consequence, the volume of tourist traffic to Yapahuwa is relatively low. During a short period in the thirteenth century, Yapahuwa functioned as the capital of Sri Lanka prior to its abandonment due to South Indian invasions. Yapahuwa was once a fortification and had a belt of walls and ditches encircling it, similar to Sigiriya.

Kalawewa

During its zenith, the water supply for the ancient city of Anuradhapura was sourced from this reservoir, known as Kalawewa. The lake remains one of the most important bodies of water and retains a substantial volume of precipitation during the monsoon season. Kalawewa was the greatest irrigation project during the Anuradhapura period. Kalawewa was built during the reign of King Dhatusena in the fifth century AD.

Sandungira Raja Maha Vihara:

Historical records indicate that this antiquated temple was erected under the patronage of King Saddatissa during the Anuradhapura period (4th century BC–11th century AD). Locals and devotees comprise the majority of visitors to Sandungira Temple; the vast majority of Sri Lankan culture excursions geared towards foreign tourists do not encompass a stop at this sacred site.

Ayurvedic hospital

In the archaeological site of Anuradhapura, artefacts that date back to an Ayurvedic hospital have been discovered. There was a misconception regarding the Ayurvedic hospital’s existence from 898 to 914 AD. Hospital services were extended to the priests who called the Thuparama temple complex home.

Visiting Colombo on a Sri Lanka cultural holiday package

The city of Colombo is located approximately 30 kilometres to the south of Colombo International Airport.
One hour is the duration of the flight from the airport to Colombo.
An extensive variety of religions and cultures have had a significant impact on Colombo, the commercial and multicultural capital of Sri Lanka. Several ships from Greece, Mesopotamia, the Arab world, China, India, and numerous other nations docked at the port of Colombo in the sixth century AD in order to sell their wares and procure provisions for the voyage.
Additionally, the Dutch, Portuguese, and British had a significant impact on Colombo. Between 1505 and 1948, during the colonial period in Sri Lanka, Colombo functioned as the primary port and commercial centre of the nation. The colonial rulers’ legacies, including palaces, parks, monuments, artefacts, literary works, festivals, and customs, bear some resemblance to their identities.
At this time, Colombo is a cosmopolitan metropolis where a multitude of religious and ethnic communities reside.
Colombo’s Kaiman Gate, Parliament, Wolvendaal Church, Old Fort, and Gangarama Temple are among the city’s most heavily visited attractions.
A Colombo walking tour is the best way to see the city of Colombo and truly experience its culture. The majority of Sri Lankan historical excursions commence and conclude in Colombo, where tourists can see the Fort, town hall, Parliament, Viharamahadevi, and Gangarama temple, among other notable structures. Numerous theatres, museums, galleries, cultural institutions, and restaurants can be found in Colombo, which is one of the most significant sites for Sri Lankan cultural history.

How to reach colombo

Aeroline connections between Colombo International Airport and all major global destinations are exceptional. Domestic air travel to all of Sri Lanka’s main cities is facilitated by the Ratmalana airport, which is situated in close proximity to the city centre.
Colombo, the main port in Sri Lanka, annually receives hundreds of cruise ships.

Sri Lanka cultural holiday package with Sigiriya rock fortress

The distance from Colombo to Sigiriya is 177 kilometres.
The four-hour drive from the airport to the cultural site of Sigiriya
Sigiriya, one of the most renowned cultural sites and an iconic tourist destination in Sri Lanka, should not be missed. It is an essential stop on any cultural excursion within the nation and has received UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Regarding historical significance and enduring heritage, the magnificence of Sigiriya surpasses that of every other tourist destination within the cultural triangle.
Sigiriya is a naturally occurring granite concealed 160 miles from Colombo, as its name suggests. Elevated by 500 metres above mean sea level, the rock is noteworthy. His immense granite boulder is currently among the most frequented tourist destinations worldwide.
Established in the fifth century AD, Sigiriya Rock Fort is among the most ancient landscaped gardens in the world. There are walls and moats all around it. The Fort of Sigiriya is endowed with an intricate water management system comprising underground sewers, fountains, and swimming pools.
Sigiriya Rock Fortress was an impregnable stronghold that King Kashyapa built in the fifth century AD to shield himself from the wrath of his half-brother Moggalana. The monarch resided in the fort for a period of eighteen years, until Moggalana and his army reappeared and engaged in combat with him.
The Sigiriya fresco murals adorn the granite fortification of the same name. The fresco paintings depicting feminine figures are believed to have originated during the fort’s construction around 1500 years ago. An approximate count of 500 of these figurines was depicted on the exterior of the granite fort. However, the majority have faded with the passage of time, leaving only a tiny pocket of frescoes featuring 28 figures. The archaeological department, nonetheless, exercises strict supervision and management over the remaining paintings. The original hues of the paintings remain vivid, and the figures remain in pristine condition.
Notable palaces in Sigiriya include the Terraced Garden with Swimming Pool, Octagonal Pond, Fresco Pocket, Pleasure Garden, and Miniature Water Garden. Due to the risk of damage, visitors are prohibited from flashing in front of the fresco paintings, despite the fact that they are securely fastened.
While traversing Sigiriya, bear in mind that the edifice not only serves as a cultural and historical landmark but also as a testament to the ancient civilization’s sophisticated engineering prowess. The granite fortress of Sigiriya is indicative of the advanced knowledge of hydraulic principles and trigonometry possessed by ancient engineers.
Climbing Sigiriya Rock can be a daunting task for the elderly, individuals with back problems, and those suffering from knee injuries. All visitors have the expectation of ascending to the summit of the mountain. Behold the breathtaking vista of the environs that crowns the culmination of your arduous efforts. At the same time, numerous ruins, including a swimming pool, a granite throng, and the remnants of other dwellings, are visible atop the rock. It is believed that the royal residence of King Kshayapa was situated atop a rocky outcrop.

Directions to get there:

Driving is the most prevalent method of transportation to reach the Sigiriya Rock Fortress. Sigiriya and the neighbouring metropolis of Dambulla, which is of considerable size, are effectively linked. All visitors utilising public transportation must initially arrive in Dambulla City before boarding a bus bound for Sigiriya.
Travelling to Sigiriya Rock via air is an additional viable option. There are daily direct flights between Colombo and Sigiriya for those who wish to reduce their travel duration.

Visiting Dambulla cave temple on a Sri Lanka cultural holiday package

This cultural excursion spans a distance of 160 kilometres throughout Sri Lanka.
Four hours pass between the airport and Dambulla on the way there.

Visiting Buddhist temples is an integral aspect of the culture of Sri Lanka. A temple is the most ideal location from which to experience Sri Lankan culture and traditions. One of the cultural meccas of the island, the Dambulla Golden Cave Temple, is the subject of this chapter.
Due to its status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Dambulla enjoys international renown. Founded in the first century BC, the golden cave temple in Dambulla is among the earliest cave temples on the globe. Dambulla, a heavily visited tourist attraction, is a highlight of the majority of Sri Lankan culture excursions. Dambulla and Sigiriya, the two well-known cities in Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle, are included in every cultural excursion in the country.
Innumerable Buddha sculptures, deity figures, statues of rulers, and murals depicting various episodes from the life of the Buddha adorn the temples of Dambulla. Dambulla, situated within Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle, is an essential destination for tourists owing to its remarkable amalgamation of Hinduism and Buddhism in its cultural heritage.
Plentiful Buddha statues are concealed within the gilded cave temple situated in Dambulla. Wall and ceiling frescoes adorning the caverns’ hundreds of square metres each depict a unique scene from the Buddha’s life. The paintings and statues date to the reign of Sri Lankan monarchs. The temple stands as a remarkable example of Sri Lanka’s traditional artisans’ ingenuity.
Unique in that it is tucked away from the bustling community of Dambulla, the temple is perched on the western side of Dambulla Rock. The Buddha statues and murals are sheltered from the sun’s rays and precipitation in five natural caverns, an exceptional feature. However, humidity accumulation has caused some deterioration to the paintings over the past few decades.
A meander around the Dambulla Cave Temple: The ascent to Dambulla is significantly less strenuous than that of Sigiriya. Elevation Sigiriya comprises a total of 120 steps, characterised by their limited width and uneven height. However, the steps leading to the temple at Dambulla are quite contemporary, and the ascent takes no more than ten minutes.

Directions to get there:

Driving is the prevailing mode of transportation to reach the Dambulla Golden Cave Temple. Major cities such as Jaffna, Colombo, and Kandy all have direct bus service to Dambulla, which provides excellent connections to the rest of the island.
An additional pragmatic choice is to reach the Dambulla Golden Cave Temple via air travel. For those who wish to reduce their travel duration, daily direct flights are available from Colombo to Dambulla.


Sri Lanka cultural holiday package: Kandy is in the hill country of Sri Lanka.

This Sri Lankan cultural excursion encompasses a distance of 115 kilometres.
Three hours pass between the airport and the city of Kandy.

Established in the early 13th century by the Kandyan King, Kandy is a sprawling metropolis renowned for its rich cultural tapestry. The British army occupied the historic capital for nearly 150 years after a subsequent assault. As a result of the migration of individuals from diverse ethnic backgrounds into the city during the last few centuries, its population has experienced substantial expansion, transforming into a veritable convergence of cultures. The preponderance of migrants established themselves along the periphery of Kandy Lake.
In Kandy, tourists may, among other things, occupy themselves by exploring colonial architecture, visiting an oriental market, and meandering through mosques, temples, and churches. One can discover exceptional opportunities to acquire traditional handicrafts, tea, and seasonings crafted by indigenous artisans in Sri Lanka at the myriad of shops dispersed along the main road. In addition to tea and seasonings, handwoven garments, stones, wooden figurines, and jewellery are also available for purchase.
Kandy is replete with establishments where one can sample regional cuisine. “Gami Kade,” the village boutique located within the Gannoruwa Agriculture Research Centre, is one of the many dining establishments that offer an extensive variety of traditional cuisines. The Sri Lankan Department of Agriculture supports this initiative, which aims to increase tourist awareness of healthy indigenous cuisine options. Located adjacent to the Gannoruwa Bridge, the restaurant is situated just outside of Kandy. The establishment provides an assortment of reasonably priced regional dishes, such as thosai, samosa, wade, kos wade, helapa, hoppers, fruit beverages, and string hoppers.
Dishes specialising in both regional and international fare can be found in abundance throughout the city centre. Numerous tarp-covered vendors in the central market sell electronics, clothing, and fast food items deemed less nutritious, including samosas, egg rolls, fish rolls, and fish buns.

The mountainous interior of the island, which was bequeathed to British East India Company representatives by the monarch of Sri Lanka, is often regarded as the cultural epicentre of the nation.
Kandy is home to the most popular Buddhist temple on the island. It is known as the Temple of the Tooth Relic and houses the Buddha’s left eye tooth. The historical origins of the temple can be traced back to Kandy, the final kingdom in Sri Lanka, founded by King Vikrama Bahu III (1267–1301) and functioning as the nation’s capital until 1815 AD.
At an elevation of 2524 metres above sea level, the Sri Lankan mountains are nestled in the island’s interior. Kandy, a picturesque metropolis with tea plantations and hazy hills all around it, The city and the Udawattakele sanctuary both contain considerable quantities of vegetation. The lake, which protects the city from inundation and increases its aesthetic appeal, is one of Kandy’s most prominent characteristics. A boat tour of Kandy Lake offers the opportunity to observe an assortment of avian species, alongside fauna such as tortoises and monitors.
Due to its prominent status as a centre of culture, Kandy is included in the majority of Sri Lankan tour packages. Kandy is one of the most alluring cities due to its abundance of significant tourist attractions, in addition to its rich cultural heritage.
Highlights: The Buddhist International Museum, the Tea Museum, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and the Kandyan Cultural Show are widespread tourist attractions in Kandy.
Additional Kandy attractions that provide significant insights into the city’s abundant tradition and culture include Natha devala, Pattini temple, Kandy lake, the museum of the tooth relic temple, Udawattakele sanctuary, the Kandyan cultural display, and the Royal Botanical Garden. Rankoth Viharaya, Gadaladeniya Temple, and Embekke Temple are additional religious sites in Kandy; however, they are all within a brief distance of the city.

Directions to get there

From Colombo and other main cities, domestic plains provide easy air access to Kandy. Regularly, a limited number of flights depart daily from Colombo to Kandy via seaplane.
Through the hill country train route, Kandy is effectively linked to itself. The rail route, which is still in excellent condition, was established by a British East Indian company. Due to its affordability and convenience, train travel is considered one of the most optimal methods for transferring from Colombo to Kandy.
Road Infrastructure: Kandy’s central location on the island renders it the pivotal node of Sri Lanka’s road network. Exceptional modern road infrastructure connects Kandy to every other region of the island.

Visiting Nuwara Eliya on a Sri Lanka cultural holiday package

A total distance of 173 kilometres will be traversed during this cultural excursion in Sri Lanka.
Four hours separate the airport and the cultural city of Nuwara Eliya.

Nuwara Eliya is the optimal location from which to begin an urban trip. Early in the eighteenth century, this melting pot of cultures was established by Governor Edward Barns. Migrations from various regions of the island have established themselves along the shores of Gregory Lake, ultimately reaching Nuwara Eliya, over the span of several centuries. Presently, Nuwara Eliya is inhabited by Sinhalese, Muslims, and individuals belonging to a multitude of additional ethnic minority groups.
Nuwara Eliya is surrounded by verdant mountains and tea plantations. Nuwara Eliya is replete with verdant mountains, cascading waterfalls, rivers, vegetable plots, tea plantations, and woodlands, among other natural wonders. Consequently, Nuwara Eliya has gained significant recognition as a preferred destination among individuals with an affinity for the natural world.
During the period of British colonial rule, Nuwara Eliya was established by a British governor who was captivated by the region’s therapeutic climate and desired to convey this to the prosperous British colonists. After sunset, the minimum temperature ever recorded on the island occurs in Nuwara Eliya, where it can at times fall as low as -2 degrees Celsius.
The history of Nuwara Eliya spans approximately 7000 years, and the city is described in detail in the Ramayana. Nuwara Eliya is of profound religious importance in Hinduism due to its designation as the abode of King Ravana. According to Hindu mythology, Queen Seetha, the wife of the Rama, was abducted by Kin Ravana and subsequently held captive in Nuwara Eliya.
Hanuman Temple, Seetha Amman Temple, and Ashok Vatika are the most frequented tourist attractions in Nuwara Eliya, which is an intriguing fact.
In terms of cultural exploration within the city, natural vacations are more popular in Nuwara Eliya than cultural excursions. However, Nuwara Eliya remains a popular destination among Indian tourists who travel to Sri Lanka in order to explore significant sites mentioned in the Ramayana, such as the Seeth Amman Temple and Asok Vatika.

Directions to get there

Nuwara Eliya is accessible via air from main cities such as Kandy and Nuwara Eliya via domestic sea aircraft service.
It is widely believed that the most efficient mode of transport between Colombo and Nuwara Eliya is via train. The railway line that connects Kandy and Nuwara Eliya is among the most picturesque in the world.
Nuwara Eliya is conveniently reachable via automobile and is linked to the majority of the main urban centres in Sri Lanka.