East Coast Sri Lanka 13 Days / 12 Nights

Our East Coast Sri Lanka holiday is perfect for those travelling during the summer, taking advantage of the wonderfully deserted eastern beaches. Explore the Cultural Triangle and Minneriya National Park, lay back on lesser visited east coast sands, travel by train through picturesque Tea Country and wander in Colombo’s historic streets.


  • Explore extraordinary ancient temples in the Cultural Triangle
  • Search for elephants in Minneriya National Park
  • Learn to cook Sri Lankan style by preparing snacks with the locals
  • Discover the tranquility of Sri Lanka’s eastern beaches
  • Stand with pilgrims to catch a glimpse of the Temple of the Tooth Relic
  • Tuk-tuk between traditional flavours on a streetfood tour of Colombo

Cultural Triangle, Minneriya National Park, East Coast Beach, Kandy, Tea Country, Colombo

Sample Itinerary

Arrive Colombo, drive to Kotugoda or Kaleliya

On arrival in Sri Lanka, you'll be met by your private guide, who will accompany you to your hotel in Kotugoda or Kaleliya.

Day 2
Drive to the Cultural Triangle, Minneriya National Park safari

Morning departure for the Cultural Triangle region. Late afternoon take a safari through the stunning Minneriya National Park, famous for its 200-strong elephant population, keeping your eyes peeled for some of the park’s 24 species of mammal, including sambar, spotted deer, those elusive leopards, sloth bears and toque monkey as well as water monitors, swamp crocodiles and over 160 species of bird.

Day 3
Sigiriya Rock, Rural Experience

After breakfast visit the rock fortress of Sigiriya – one of Sri Lanka’s seven UNESCO World Heritage sites. This immense rock dominates the surrounding landscape, rising 650 feet above the ground, and the view from the flattened summit is spectacular. Those without a head for heights can stroll around the ramparts and pleasure gardens, or take in the famous Sigiriya frescoes found partway up the rock, as your guide tells you some of the legends surrounding the site. In the late morning you will have the chance to experience traditional, rural life, away from the ruins and try your hand at preparing Sri Lankan food. In a small village close to Sigiriya you will be welcomed into the modest, mud-walled home of one of the families, where you will assist your host in the preparation of a typical Sri Lankan lunch, using authentic cooking methods and traditional clay pots. After eating return to your hotel for a relaxing afternoon.

Day 4
Polonnaruwa, drive to Passekudah

Head east towards the UNESCO listed, ancient capital of Polonnaruwa, built over a thousand years ago alongside carefully-engineered reservoirs that provide the region's water to this day. As you stroll around the ruins, you’ll get a feel for what Polonnaruwa was like during its heyday as a thriving commercial and religious centre, stopping to see the statue of the great Sinhalese King Parakramabahu, who built the reservoirs. Wander through the fascinating area known as the Quadrangle, and pause at the feet of the impressive Gal Vihara – four separate Buddha images perfectly sculpted into one large piece of granite. Leave atmospheric Polonnaruwa behind to head east to your beach resort, arriving mid-afternoon where the remainder of your day will be at leisure.

Day 5
Relax on the beach

Enjoy a day at leisure, soaking up the sunshine, feet in the sand.

Day 6
Batticaloa cycle tour, cooking class & fishing lesson

Make an early start and head south along the coast to Batticaloa. Known locally as ‘Batti’, this picturesque town on a narrow peninsula has a varied and turbulent history, but now exudes a very relaxed vibe. Explore by bike, focusing on the local food scene; visit a bustling morning market; and cycle to a local family home to learn a few secrets of Sri Lankan cuisine as you prepare traditional curries to enjoy together for lunch. Relax and chat with your host family, learning about their way of life, before getting back on your bike and heading to Batticaloa Lagoon - the largest lagoon in the region - to see the mangrove swamps and seagrass beds brimming with water birds and fish. Stop at Batticaloa Lighthouse, where the lagoon meets the Indian Ocean, then meet with a group of local fishermen for a hands-on taster of the traditional fishing methods passed down through the generations.

Day 7
A day of R&R

Another day at leisure to relax on the beach and make the most of the hotel's facilities.

Day 8
Drive to Kandy, via Dambulla Caves

Set off early for the sacred city of Kandy, stopping en route at the 1st century BC Dambulla Rock Cave Temple. Legend tells that during an invasion from South India, the Sinhalese king took refuge in these caves and, through meditation, gained the strength to drive away invaders. Having declared the caves as a sacred area, he built the first temple, with others added by later rulers. Wonder at the spiritually significant caves - an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists from around the world - and carry on to Kandy in the afternoon.

Day 9
City tour, Peradeniya Botanical Gardens, Temple of Tooth Relic

With your guide by your side, explore Kandy at your pace. Get an insight into local life at Kandy’s lively morning market, then perhaps retreat to the tranquillity of the Peradeniya Botanical Gardens, which house the largest variety of orchids found in Sri Lanka. Escape the heat in a tea shop along the main street, then maybe take a leisurely stroll around Kandy Lake, or a brisk walk through the Udawatta Kele Sanctuary ‘forbidden forest’. One must-see highlight is the Temple of the Tooth Relic, where Buddhists believe they have enshrined a tooth of the Lord Buddha in a golden casket; visit in the afternoon to avoid the crowds. At sunset, we suggest heading to the 88-foot tall Bahiravokanda Vihara Buddha Statue that looms protectively over the city, for unbeatable panoramic views.

Day 10
Tea Country train to Nuwara Eliya, Tea Factory visit

Depart from Kandy station for a scenic train ride through tea country. From the comfort of your carriage, you’ll see mile after mile of tea fields rush past, dotted with waterfalls and valleys. Nuwara Eliya town, in the cooling shade of Pidurutalagala (the tallest mountain in Sri Lanka) contains some intriguing remnants of colonial rule, including a village post office, an English-style church and the ‘St Andrew’s’ golf club, as well as the famous race course. Tour the town and a nearby tea factory with your guide, learning about the history and modern-day production methods of this region's most valuable crop.

Day 11
Relax & explore

Your day is at leisure to relax in the cool shade, drinking as much of the region’s world-class tea as you can!

Day 12
Drive to Colombo, foodie experience

Drive to Colombo, arriving mid-afternoon. There will be time to freshen up before heading out with your guide for a culinary exploration of the town’s vibrant foodie scene. Head for the sociable seaside promenade and lawns of Galle Face Green, where numerous streetfood vendors congregate. Try spicy isso wade prawn fritters, and traditional achcharu sweet-sour pickles, washed down with fresh lime juice. Nana’s serves arguably the best Tandoori Chicken in the city, and is a Galle Face institution - you can’t leave without trying some! Tuk-tuk to The Old Dutch Hospital (tastefully revamped to house shops and restaurants) to sample some of Sri Lanka’s finest tea and Pol Roti Kottu coconut-infused stuffed flatbreads. Leave room for traditional Sri Lankan jaggery sweets, and return to your hotel with your appetite fully satisfied

Day 13
Depart Colombo

Transfer to the airport for your onward flight..


Personalised design
We’ll plan your trip around your specific interests, tastes and preferences, providing helpful tips and honest advice based on firsthand knowledge of the destionation.
Authentic Experience
Our expert guides and brilliant travel concierges are hand-picked to provide a genuine experience, bringing you destination to life with care and passion.
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Our luxury trips are designed with responsible travel principles that priorities travel experiences that are both good for you and good for the planet.
It is easy to customize your East Coast Sri Lanka tours with us

What our clients say about us

Feb 2023
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An amazing trip out together by Stephen at My Way Travel! This was our second trip ( went to Vietnam and Cambodia 2019). Stephen is great to work with- very flexible and listens to what we wanted to do. This trip was originally scheduled for April 2020. A honest company that asked if I wanted my deposit back and I said no - that I would use it in a future trip! How many companies around the world did this???? We had great guides In Bangkok and Chiang Rai and Chiang Rai. Fon was full of energy and fun in Bangkok. Ann was one of the best guides I have ever had- she took us to a couple of places not noted on the tour. We went for a hike at a waterfall and visited the cave where the Thai boys were rescued in the cave. Both Ann and Fon gave us wonderful suggestions for restaurants. I would absolutely recommend Stephen and My Way Travel! We plan to use him again in planning Bali!
April 18, 2023
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Our group of 26 people traveled to Japan & Thailand with My Way Travel, and had an incredible time. This was our third trip with My Way Travel and the trip was planned perfectly with every detail accounted for. Our tour guides were exceptional in every way. They exuded a warmth and friendliness that immediately put us at ease, making our trip more enjoyable. Not only were they amiable, but they also had extensive knowledge about the places we visited. We would highly recommend My Way Travel to anyone planning a trip to Asia.
July 28, 2023
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We have just returned from a 16 Day/15 Night trip to southeast Asia including stops in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand planned by Stephen at My Way Travel. We reached out to My Way Travel with quite a tall order asking them to arrange a trip for us that included visiting 9 cities in 15 nights! From the first point of contact, our experience with My Way Travel was absolutely fantastic. Stephen was very attentive and let us customize our tour however we pleased. All of the hotels he booked for us were incredible and the tour guides and drivers made us feel like family. It was very easy to keep in touch with Stephen throughout our trip via Whatsapp. The only thing we really needed during our trip was to add baggage for one of our flights and he was able to take care of it the day before we arrived at the airport. All the drivers/guides showed up on time and made transferring from airport to hotel to tour to wherever extremely easy. I will definitely recommend this company to anyone that plans on traveling to Asia.
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