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Best Things To Do In Sri Lanka 2024

If you’re planning a trip in 2024, you’ll be happy to know that there are plenty of amazing things to do in Sri Lanka and attractions to explore in this beautiful island nation. From stunning beaches to ancient temples, there’s something for everyone to enjoy in Sri Lanka. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best activities to do in Sri Lanka.

20 Things To Do In Sri Lanka In Details

Sigiriya Rock Fortress

Sigiriya rock fortress | things to do in Sri Lanka
Sigiriya rock fortress

Sigiriya is considered one of the first millennium’s most important urban planning projects and one of the oldest gardens in the world. It is one of Sri Lanka’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is one of the top things to do in Sri Lanka. There is a fort on the rock-top, which dates back to AD. While it is believed to have been built in the 5th century, evidence has been found that it existed as a Buddhist monastery before the construction of the palace and fort. The beautiful paintings, the defense system of the fort, the irrigation system, and the city-building technology are still surprising even present engineers.

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Dambulla Cave Temple

Dambulla Caves Temples | Dambulla | Sri Lanka |
Dambulla Caves Temples

Dambulla Cave Temple is one of the largest temples in Sri Lanka with a large number of Buddha statues built in the first century AD. It is said that these caves have been used by King Valagamba to escape from Indian invaders. After he became king again defeating the invaders, he sponsored to repair the caves as a cave temple. Today, this cave temple is full of ancient paintings and statues that amaze tourists from home and abroad.

Pidurangala Rock

Pidurangala rock - One of best places to watch morning sunrise
Pidurangala rock

Pidurangala is a 5-acre rock belonging to the Pidurangala temple beside Sigiriya. It is a destination approved by all tourists as one of the best things to do in Sri Lanka. Pidurangala is not only considered one of the best places to watch the sunrise in Sri Lanka while listening to the sound of the morning environment but also a great place to see the best morning view of Sigiriya Rock. From the top of the rock, you can see the 360-degree view and from there you can see the infinity view in every direction of Sri Lanka.

Kandy

queens hotel : Oldest hotel in Sri Lanka
queens hotel

Would you like to walk through the last royal palace of Sri Lanka’s last kingdom and see a Buddhist shrine? The Kandy temple of the tooth relic is the only place for that. Buddha’s left tooth is buried here and many other artifacts can be seen. The museums surrounding the palace will surely amaze you with priceless accessories including antique royal jewelry and costumes of Sri Lanka’s past.

Peradeniya Botanical Garden

Peradeniya botanical Agarden
Peradeniya botanical Agarden

Peradeniya Gardens is the largest botanical garden in Sri Lanka and covers a beautiful and spacious area of ​​147 acres. In the park, you can experience a forest reserve in the middle of the city, covered with various mature giant trees. The giant bamboo from Burma, the centuries-old giant Javanese fig tree, and the cannonball tree are among the plants that have caught everyone’s attention.

The gardens are filled with all the flora and tropical trees of Sri Lanka and various dignitaries such as Queen Elizabeth II, Marshal Tito, and Yuri Gagarin have planted trees to mark their visits to the gardens.

Ceylon Tea

Types of Ceylon Tea Flavoured You Can Try in Sri Lanka | Ceylon tea
Types of Ceylon Tea Flavoured

The Sri Lankan tea industry began in 1801 with a camellia sinensis plant brought from China in 1824 by the British. Tea production is currently a multi-billion dollar export industry in Sri Lanka. Tea tourism has become increasingly popular with the growing tea industry, and visiting tea factories and tea estates has become popular among tourists as one of the best things to do in Sri Lanka.

Adam’s Peak

Sri Padaya Adam's Peak Nuwara Eliya Sri Lanka | Cultural Tours Sri Lanka
Adam’s Peak Nuwara Eliya

One of the best places in Sri Lanka to watch the sunrise in the morning is the top of Adam’s Peak. Devotees who wish to witness the morning sun service usually start doing Sri Pada hiking at around 3 am or in the evening. However, the purpose of most tourists who climb Adam’s Peak is not to watch the sunrise, they go to worship a footprint set up on the top of the mountain.

Even today, all the religions of Sri Lanka, whether Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, or Catholic, come together in peace and happiness for pilgrimages, but it is a question of whose footprint it is. Buddhists believe it belongs to Buddha, while Hindus believe it belongs to Lord Shiva. Islamists and Catholics believe it to be that of Adam.

Horton Plains National Park

Horton Plains is a beautiful wild area spread over an area of ​​3.169 hectares at an altitude of about 2100 meters above sea level. This sanctuary is home to a large number of flora and fauna endemic to Sri Lanka and is a very important area in Sri Lanka’s water catchment areas. Every biodiversity-loving tourist must add this park to their bucket list.

Little England Nuwara Eliya City

Gregory Lake Park in Nuwara Eliya. The Lake in center of the Nuwara Eliya city in Sri Lanka - Sri Lanka Insta Tours
Gregory Lake Park in Nuwara Eliya

Fully developed by the British, Nuwara Eliya is known as Little England. The hilly area surrounding the city is filled with tea and produces some of the best teas in the world.

Moreover, Nuwara Eliya is also famous for the cultivation of European vegetables, fruits, and flowers, which are cultivated as the main source of income or as an additional source of income for the residents of the city. Local and Foreign Every traveler when looking for things to do in Sri Lanka, They do not forget Nuwara Eliya to add to their bucket list.

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EpicTrain Journey to Ella from Nanu Oya

Epic Blue Train Journey From Nuwara Eliya to Ella, Sri Lanka Holiday | Insta Tours
Epic Blue Train Journey From Nuwara Eliya to Ella

The train ride from Nuwara Eliya to Ella is one of the best train journeys in the world. The train showcases Sri Lanka’s amazing topography going through tunnels, waterfalls, and tea plantations. It is an indescribable experience and a must-do activity in Sri Lanka.

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Ella City

Nine Arch Bridge In Ella Sri Lanka
Nine Arch Bridge In Ella

Ella, which has an excellent percentage of oxygen content in the world and a mild climate, is a gathering place for all the tourists who come to Sri Lanka for a visit. Its mountains, waterfalls, and mild climate made the city a popular tourist destination, while the simple rural life offers a new experience to tourists. British engineering marvels such as the Nine-arch Bridge stand out as free tourist attractions, and many restaurants serving local cuisine are popular with tourists.

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Yala National Park Safari

Yala National Park Jeep Safari | the Best time to visit Yala Safari Tour
Yala National Park Jeep Safari

Yala National Park has become a worldwide tourist attraction as a forest sanctuary. Tourists looking for things to do in Sri Lanka tend to choose Yala National Park and the main reason for that is Sri Lankan leopards live there. In addition to them, The park has given the opportunity tourists to observe Sri Lankan wild elephants, deer, wild boars, reptiles, and many bird species. The park is filled with a variety of topography and ecosystems as well as a beautiful coastline.

Arugam Bay Beach

Arugam Bay Beach Sri Lanka
Arugam Bay Beach

Arugambe Beach in Sri Lanka is the place to go for a relaxing warm blue beach for those who are a little tired of the various stereotypical beaches around the world. The beach is one of the most popular beaches in the Eastern Province of Sri Lanka
The nature of the waves here is perfect for surfing. Apart from that, Arugambe has won the name for beach party life.

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Anuradapura and Polonnaruwa

Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa are at the top when it comes to Sri Lanka’s demographics and kingdoms. Tourists who are interested in what are the things to do in Sri Lanka always include these two kingdoms in their travel plans. Here in Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa, you can see Buddhist temples decorated with huge stupas and stone carvings, and these two areas consist of huge lakes that look like the sea.

Mirissa whale watching

The Mirissa town on Sri Lanka’s southern coast has been identified as a destination for blue whales. Due to the warm waters of the region, blue whales migrate to the Mirissa Sea region for their breeding. Due to this, Mirissa is famous as one of the 3 best places in Sri Lanka to start a Whale watching tour as well as the warm water and sandy beaches have also made the town a tourist attraction.

Galle Dutch Fort

Galla Dutch Fort is a popular destination among local and foreign tourists and is the best proof of Dutch power in Sri Lanka. The fort, which was created according to Dutch architecture, has a museum including the tools they used in those days, and one of the oldest lighthouses in Sri Lanka also remains in the Galle Dutch Fort. It must be said that this fort is a perfect place to spend an evening with a perfect sunset watching the ships traveling on the East-West Sea Route.

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

The Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is one of the largest elephant orphanages in South Asia and is managed by the Wildlife Department of Sri Lanka. The purpose of this grant is to breed elephants and protect elephants that have suffered from accidents as well as lost elephant calves in the wild. Some time ago, an elephant mother gave birth to twins and it was an incident that was talked about all over the world. At the same time, Another birth of elephant twins happened in Minneriya National Park.

Minneriya Safari

Minneriya is the only destination in South Asia where you can see 200-300 elephants at a time. Tourists can see a representation of elephants of all age groups, from newborn calves to large mature elephants at Minneriya. A large number of elephants come to the park’s reservoir in the evening during the dry season and many tourists like to witness that incident, so they add Minneriya National Park as an indispensable safari destination to their list of things to do in Sri Lanka.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • Is Sri Lanka safe for travelers?

Sri Lanka is generally considered safe for tourists. However, it’s essential to stay informed about current travel advisories and follow local guidelines to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

  • What’s the best time to visit Sri Lanka?

The best time to visit Sri Lanka is from November to April when the weather is dry and ideal for exploring the island. However, the hill country is best visited during the European summer months.

  • Do I need a visa to enter Sri Lanka?

Yes, most travelers require a visa to enter Sri Lanka. You can obtain a tourist visa online or upon arrival at the airport. Make sure to check the specific visa requirements based on your nationality.

  • What currency is used in Sri Lanka?

The currency used in Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR). You can exchange currency at banks, ATMs, and currency exchange counters at the airport.

  • Are there any cultural etiquette tips I should be aware of?

Yes, it’s important to dress modestly when visiting religious sites in Sri Lanka. Removing shoes and hats before entering temples is also a common practice. Additionally, it’s polite to ask for permission before taking photos of people, especially in rural areas.

  • What are some popular souvenirs to buy in Sri Lanka?

Popular souvenirs from Sri Lanka include handcrafted jewelry, tea, spices, traditional masks, and batik clothing. Don’t forget to haggle and explore local markets for unique finds.

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