The most popular starting point for a first time visitor to Sri Lanka is to head 3 hours inland for a few days in the Cultural Triangle, Sri Lanka’s historic heartland. With 4 UNESCO World Heritage sites and a National Park awash with elephants you could just base yourself here for your entire holiday. As its moniker implies, the Cultural Triangle offers visitors a definitive introduction to Sri Lanka’s ancient history.
Ancient History & Natural Beauty
As its moniker implies, the Cultural Triangle offers visitors a definitive introduction to Sri Lanka’s ancient history. Most will stay in Habarana or Sigiriya and then enjoy day tours from here. By basing yourselves here for at least 3 nights you can allow your body to adjust to Sri Lanka time and explore its ancient history and natural beauty from a great choice of hotels.
- Minneriya National Park: The best place to see elephants in large numbers by jeep safari
- Sigiriya: Climb the 370-metre citadel to see how the iconic “Lion Rock” dominates the surrounding plains
- Polonnaruwa: Sri Lanka’s 10th century 2nd capital is now a beautifully preserved archaeological park
- Kandalama: A beautiful ancient lake that draws in animals including elephants and balloon safari starting point
- Anuradhapura: Sri Lanka’s 1st capital flourished for 1,300 years and some of the temples are still in use
- Dambulla: Sri Lanka’s greatest cave temple complex in use for over 2,000 years alive with intricate and delicate frescoes & Buddha statues
Away from touring the area is also an ideal place to explore the surrounding countryside by bike or on a village walk. The sandy paths are relatively flat and it’s a great way to get out and see rural Sri Lanka.