The Sri Lanka Travel Specialists
Boutique Sri Lanka is a classic but leisurely journey around the most interesting and beautiful parts of Sri Lanka, which allows you time to enjoy luxurious accommodation that has won global acclaim. Experience the ancient heritage of the north-central Cultural Triangle, the tea plantations and misty mountains of the hill country, and finally the glorious beaches of the Deep South. We have selected stylish boutique accommodation with excellent food and service to make this an unforgettable holiday and, as ever, we ae entirely flexible if you wish to propose changes.
Upon arriving in Sri Lanka, transfer to your splendid boutique hotel conveniently placed a short drive from the international airport. Relax and unwind after your flight, preparing yourself for the adventure ahead.
Our Boutique Sri Lanka tour suggests three days in the Cultural Triangle. As you enter this dry, central region, you should visit Dambulla Cave Temple, a must-see with its rock ceiling covered in one large sweep of colourful frescoes, some of which dates back more than 2,000 years. This cave temple has the largest number of Buddha statues all housed in one place including a 14-metre figure of the recumbent Buddha carved out of the rock. You could also explore Polonnaruwa which became Sri Lanka’s royal medieval capital in 1073 and remained Sri Lanka’s capital until the late 13C. Today, the ancient city’s ruins remain in remarkably good nick, and are a fascinating site to visit. The most impressive are the ancient sculptures of Lord Buddha at the Gal Vihara cut into Granite stone dating back to the middle of the 12C while the nearby Archeological Museum adds extra interest. On the next day, why not rise early and climb the magnificent Sigiriya Rock, one of Sri Lanka's fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites? No matter how often you climb to the summit of this one-time fortress of the murderous, maverick Sinhalese king, Kassapa, the pleasure barely diminishes. Many scholars believe that Kassapa sought to rule as a God-king. About two hours can happily be spent walking through the water gardens, and then up the steep steps - either hewn out of the rock or on circular iron staircases - past the frescoes. You will be in no rush to abandon the spectacular views at the summit. There is much more you can potentially see and do in the Cultural Triangle – as well as other famous sites such as Anuradhapura and Mihintale, you can visit the game park at Minneriya or engage in activities such as bullock cart rides, boating on the lakes, nature trails, bird watching and fishing.
The journey from the Cultural Triangle to Sri Lanka's hill capital – the small lakeside city of Kandy – will occupy most of the morning. Experience the ancient Kandyan heritage. Visit the Temple of the Tooth in Kandy where a sacred tooth relic of the Lord Buddha is enshrined since 4th Century A.D. The temple has decorative walls, a golden roof and fine woodwork. Religious services with traditional music and drumming are held daily at dawn, midday and in the evening.
Today you begin your journey to the central highlands with its tea covered hills, gushing waterfalls, and scenic beauty. Travel into Sri Lanka’s tea-growing highlands and check-in at your beautiful hotel. The hill country also provides an excellent base for a variety of adventure activities, such as kayaking, trekking and cycling.
Time to experience Yala National Park in Sri Lanka’s south east and see elephants, water buffalo and, with luck, leopards in their natural habitat. Game parks don’t have to be all dust and grime – Yala has a choice of high-quality glamping and some stylish and innovative boutique hotels. En-route visit Buduruwagala to see Sri Lanka's tallest rock-cut Buddha statue. If game parks are not your thing we suggest you reduce your journey times and head straight for Galle, the epicentre of Sri Lanka’s boutique collection.
Journey along the scenic south coast to the historic city of Galle and stay a night in Galle's 17C Dutch Fort, a UNESCO-protected World Heritage site where glorious villas abound. Several hours can be spent visiting the lighthouse, walking the ramparts and nosing around the cafes and art and craft shops that have made the Fort a place to be seen. Employ the services of a local expert to bring the history of the Fort alive on a guided tour. While in Galle, you could go cycling down rural lanes or take a whale and dolphin spotting expedition from nearby Mirissa.
We have saved the last three nights for a taste of Sri Lanka’s beaches. Our Boutique Sri Lanka tour takes you to the highly-regarded boutique hotel strip in the west coast town of Bentota, where the beaches are as broad as anywhere on the island and there is accommodation suited to both couples and families. Although we have included Bentota, do remember that the choice is always yours, and this itinerary can be adjusted should you prefer to stay along the Galle Coast or South Coast instead. Whilst staying in Bentota, consider a visit to the Balapitiya puppet museum or indulge in water-sports in the Indian Ocean or along a river estuary. Bentota is conveniently placed within two hours of Colombo’s international airport.
Nestled amongst acres of beautifully manicured gardens, this colonial manor house, or Wallawwa, is now a luxurious boutique hotel. This old and new concept provides guests with unrivalled setting and style just 15 minutes from the airport. 18 bedrooms, Asian fusion cuisine, Z spa and The Wallawwa’s swimming pool – all set amongst one of the finest private gardens in Sri Lanka.
Vil Uyana spreads over scenic flatlands close to Sigiriya rock. This immensely tranquil development reawakens the efforts of ancient Sinhala kings who developed and irrigated this area. Large cabanas, luxuriously appointed, blend seamlessly into a rural landscape of marshes, lakes and paddy fields.
The Kandy House is a brilliant boutique hotel offering stylish and private accommodation, personal service, and delicious food - all in a stunningly beautiful natural setting. The manor house, has been refurbished to blend the old with the new- light white interiors, polished hardwood floorboards, Jack wood staircase, Dutch style antique furniture and careful injections of colour.
Camellia Hills is a modern interpretation of a tea bungalow. Offering accommodation in five ensuite rooms overlooking the majestic Castlereagh reservoir and surrounding tea plantations, the bungalow is great for relaxation and operate on all-inclusive basis.
Yala’s first boutique hotel, Chena Huts is comprised of fourteen private cabins sprawled across seven acres of scrubland, edged by the ocean and just five minutes from the entrance to Yala National Park. This luxurious accommodation offers exquisite food, excellent service and a peaceful atmosphere. There is a pool, spa, and each cabins is complete with a private plunge pool.
Taru Villas - Rampart Street is an appealing four-bedroom villa with pool and a prime position inside the historic Galle Fort.
Taru Villas - Rock Villa is a stunning beach villa of meticulous design adjacent to a quieter southern stretch of Bentota beach dominated by boutique properties. Concealed from the beach by mangroves and palm trees it offers high levels of privacy. Retreat to its peaceful atmosphere as you relax on your private veranda, or take a dip in the 50 ft. swimming pool.
Red Dot selects only the best accommodation in Sri Lanka, in its particular price range. Please suggest which of the three categories might most appeal to you. (You can tick more than one box).
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