Price

$2041

Available: 1 space

Secure your place on this trip with $350 deposit. Final payment due 60 days before departure.

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      • Hotels: Standard Class

      • 07/17/2024 - 07/30/2024

      • Max Participants: 16

      • 14 Days / 13 Nights

      Overview

      Sri Lanka is a hidden gem that has reemerged as a tropical jewel that captivates travelers with vibrant colors, rich cultures, and palm-fringed landscapes. Begin in the bustling city of Colombo, exploring its vibrant streets before immersing yourself in the Portuguese and Dutch architecture of Negombo. Experience the local way of life as you observe fishermen at work and glide along the Dutch canal. Discover the awe-inspiring Sigiriya rock fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and share a meal with locals in a nearby village. Traverse the scenic central highlands, explore a traditional tea plantation, and take a scenic train ride, all while earning professional development credit with other educators.

      A map of the tour begins in Colombo and continues by bus to Negombo, Sigiriya, Kandy, Digana, and Nuwara. After a train ride to Ella, the bus journey continues to Yala National Park, Galle, and Mirissa, where the journey ends.

      GEEO will be partnering with the Center for South Asia at UW-Madison. Accompanying the trip will be a representative of UW-Madison who will provide guidance to teachers during the trip and help with the development of classroom activities and lesson plans that focus on the historical, cultural, social, political, economic, and environmental aspects of Sri Lanka.

      What's Included:
      • Lunch at Sthree Craft Shop and Cafe
      • Nature Resort Stay, Digana
      • Colombo orientation walk
      • Fishing village walking tour
      • Dutch canal boat ride
      • Dambulla Cave Temple visit
      • Sigiriya Rock Fortress tour
      • Village tour with local lunch
      • Spice plantation visit
      • Temple of the Tooth guided tour
      • Tea factory visit
      • Yala National Park safari
      • Galle Fort and city tour
      • G Adventures tour leader throughout
      • Hotels (13 nts)
      • 13 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 1 dinner – allow $225-295 USD for meals not included
      • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities using private van, boat, scenic local train
      What's Not Included:
      • International air travel
      • Incidentals
      • Travel health and cancellation insurance
      • Applicable visas
      • Tips or gratuities
      • Airport taxes
      • Beverages
      • Meals not mentioned in itinerary
      • Optional tours and admissions
      • Airport transfers

      Itinerary Download PDF

      Arrive at any time in Colombo, the capital and largest city of Sri Lanka. Due to the potential for flight delays or cancellations, we recommend that you plan to arrive in South Asia at least a day in advance. This will also give you time to adjust to the time difference and overcome any jetlag. We can book extra hotel nights for you in Colombo before the program begins. Please note that check-in at the hotel is usually around 2:00-3:00 p.m. There are no planned activities until an intro meeting around 6:00 or 7:00 p.m., usually in the hotel lobby. Check for a sign or ask at the reception desk about the exact time and location of the group meeting. Please make every effort to arrive in time for this meeting. If you are delayed and will arrive late, please inform us. Your tour leader will then leave you a message at the front desk informing you of where and when to meet up tomorrow. After the meeting, you might choose to get dinner at a nearby restaurant with your traveling companions and your tour leader to further get to know one another.

      Enjoy a guided city tour of Colombo, where you will visit the Pettah district and wind your way through a series of open-air bazaars and markets. The area is home to Jami Ul-Alfar Mosque, one of the oldest and most visited mosques in Colombo, and also hosts Kayman's Gate, Colombo Town Hall, and the Khan Clock Tower. Later in the day, drive to Negombo where you will have free time in the evening to explore the stunning Portuguese and Dutch architecture. Approximate travel time: 45 minutes by private vehicle

      We will begin the day by taking a walking tour of a fishing village. Learn about the life of the locals while you head out to the sea to take in the action. Watch the fishermen bring their boats to shore, clean their nets, dry their catch, and sell the fish to waiting buyers. We will then board a boat and cruise calmly along the Dutch canal, one of many canals in the city that links estuaries and lagoons. Watch as Negombo's residents collect coconuts, and keep an eye out for the multitude of bird species in the area. Afterward, we depart Negombo and drive to the Dambulla province, where we will visit the Golden Cave Temple of Dambulla, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Dambulla cave temples are one of the most well-preserved temples and cave sites in Sri Lanka. See the Buddhist mural paintings that line the walls of the seventh-century caves as well as a collection of hundreds of statues of Buddha in different poses. We will then drive to a hotel near Sigiriya where we will spend the next two nights. In the evening, try to catch a beautiful sunset over the Kandalama Reservoir. Approximate travel time: 3 to 4.5 hrs by private vehicle

      Wander through a typical Sri Lankan village to learn more about its residents and their way of life. For lunch, enjoy some local cuisine prepared by the families of the town and get a chance to interact with the community. Later, will visit the Sigiriya Rock Fortress and be mesmerized by the ancient complex built over 1,500 years ago. The fortress grounds captivate every visitor with its well-planned gardens, caves, monasteries, and palaces adorned with beautiful wall motifs. Start at the water gardens and climb more than 1,200 steps to reach the top. Pass boulders and caves with frescoes to find the ruins of a palace on the flat surface of the old volcanic magma rock. The rock rests 1,213 ft above sea level with a shear drop on all sides. In the afternoon, opt to go for a tour of Polonnaruwa, the ancient capital of Sri Lanka, where you can cycle through the ruins.

      While driving through the scenic Knuckles Mountain Range today, our first stop will be a visit to an herbal center of spices for an interactive session with students of Ayurveda. Learn all about the medicinal uses of various herbs used by the people of Sri Lanka in their massages and treatments. We will arrive in Kandy in the afternoon for an orientation walk of the city and area around Kandy Lake. We will have a delicious traditional Sri Lankan lunch prepared by Sthree Craft Shop and Café. This social enterprise offers opportunities for local women and youth living with disabilities, through handicraft and hospitality training. Enjoy a tour of the Temple of the Tooth, which houses an important relic: a tooth of Lord Buddha kept in a well-preserved golden casket. Learn about the importance of this site from local guides. In the evening, opt to attend an exciting Kandyan Cultural Dance. Approximate travel time: 3 hrs by private vehicle

      Enjoy a free morning in Kandy before traveling to Digana for a nature resort homestay. Upon arrival, we will get a crash course in local life with a village walk. Learn about some of the essential local industries like milk collection and dolomite mining. Meet with a local jeweler who creates handicrafts from copper sheets and precious stones, and then take home personally-crafted incense after a lesson in incense production by a local woman. She employs other women from the community to mix oils and resins in crafting perfectly scented incense. Lend a hand with the farm and learn to cook authentic Sri Lankan dishes. This project supports efforts for alternative income in Digana as well as improved access to food and water. Accommodations at the nature resort homestay are simple and authentic. Rooming will be in twin- and triple-share rooms. You will wake up in tranquility surrounded by palm trees. Approximate travel time: 1-1.5 hrs by private vehicle

      Enjoy a free morning of exploration at Gidana before transferring to Nuwara Eliya. The town of Nuwara Eliya produces the finest Orange Pekoe Ceylon tea and is inhabited mainly by tea planters and plantation workers. Pay a visit to one of the factories to learn all about tea production. The town, also known as 'Little England', offers a lot of options for visitors: Explore the nature trails, visit the plantations, or go horseback riding. Approximate travel time: 3 hrs by private vehicle

      Spend a free morning strolling local markets or hiking in the Horton Plains Nature Reserve. During the 6-mile trek, walk through the clouds to discover a majestic dropoff that provides amazing views over the plains into the sea. Later, we will hop on the local train and take the scenic route to Ella. There are amazing photo opportunities, but please don't hang out your body outside of the moving train unless you are a trained social media influencer with a significant life insurance policy. You will have some free time to explore Ella in the evening. Approximate travel time: 3 hrs by local train

      Enjoy a free day in the charming town of Ella. You can explore the provincial capital by visiting St Mark's Church, the Hindu Kataragame Devale, and Buddhist Muthiyagana Vihara. You can also head out to the iconic Nine Arch Bridge, which is made of stone and cement and is a viaduct connecting Ella and Demodara train stations. Don't look down—this 100-year-old bridge, also referred to as the "Nine Skies Bridge," is almost 3,100 feet above sea level. Train services still operate, so check the train schedule and be sure to catch a glimpse of the bridge in action! Another option is trekking to the picturesque Dunhinda Falls, located just outside the town of Badulla.

      This morning you can opt to hike to Little Adam's Peak. This 2-3 hour hike is fairly easy, and the path is marked by signs. In the afternoon, travel to Yala National Park. After settling in, head out on a safari and keep an eye out for leopards, elephants, jackals, sloth bears, sambars, spotted deer, crocodiles, and more than 200 bird species. Learn about the park's history and diverse wildlife. Approximate travel time: 2 hrs by private vehicle

      This morning, you will have the option to go on an additional safari ($36 USD per person). Keep an eye out for leopards, elephants, jackals, sloth bears, sambars, spotted deer, crocodiles, and more than 200 bird species. Learn about its diverse wildlife and the history of the park. Later, we will travel south to Mirissa Beach, where we will stay for the next three nights. Approximate travel time: 3 hrs by private vehicle

      Today, we take a day trip to Galle and visit the Galle Fort, a 16th-century fort first built by the Portuguese and later occupied by the Dutch. The ramparts are still standing even after being battered by Mother Nature, including the devastating 2004 tsunami. Explore more of the beautiful capital, taking in the Dutch architecture and lively atmosphere. The Dutch Hospital shopping complex is a great place to scoop up some souvenirs. Approximate travel time: 1 hr by private vehicle

      You have a full free day in Mirissa to relax on the beach, take a surfing lesson, rent a tuk-tuk, eat fresh seafood, or climb Coconut Tree Hill.

      There are no planned activities today, so you may depart Mirissa at any time. If you wish to extend your stay in Mirissa, consider booking post-tour accommodation with us. The Colombo airport can be reached by private taxi or bus from Mirissa; your tour leader can help you arrange a transfer. Please note that it will take about 2.5 hours to get to Colombo from Mirissa. Please note that check-out time from the hotel is usually mid-morning, but luggage storage services are available at the reception desk. Want more adventure? Book two or more GEEO programs in the same school year and receive a discount! GEEO will give you 10% off of the lesser value program(s) (up to 3 programs per year). If you would like to extend your time abroad but don't see another GEEO program that interests you, let us know. We can work with you to find a trip from our tour operator’s much larger catalog. Their tours are open to the general public and not designed specifically for educators, but we can still offer you and your travel companions a discounted educator price on any additional tours that you book.

      Details

      Frequently Asked Questions
      Please read our general FAQs, where you can find essential information that applies to all of our programs.
      Resources to Learn & Teach about Sri Lanka
      Visit our recommended reading page to see the list of books GEEO recommends reading before your program (this is not required reading). We also have lesson plans and Pinterest boards that may be useful for you as you learn about your destination and prepare to bring lessons back to your classroom.
      Terms and Conditions
      It is very important for you to visit our Terms and Conditions page before signing up for this program.
      GEEO Program Confirmation Process
      We require a minimum of 6 participants for most GEEO programs. We officially confirm that a program will run once at least 8 people have signed up, which provides a margin for individual cancellations. Nearly all GEEO programs ultimately meet this enrollment quota, and in the rare event that a program does not meet the minimum requirement and GEEO cancels the program, we will work with you to find a suitable alternative or provide a refund of your deposit if you prefer. We encourage you to sign up for any program that interests you, and we will notify the entire group once 6 people are booked and again once 8 people are booked. We always emphasize the importance of exercising caution when making non-refundable travel arrangements, especially given the unpredictable nature of travel. For example, we typically recommend booking flights with flexible change/cancellation policies.
      Cancellation policy
      All cancellations must be submitted to GEEO in written form by emailing your request for cancellation to travel@geeo.org. If you do not receive a confirmation that we have received your written cancellation request, please call us at 1-877-600-0105. Verbal cancellation requests will not be honored.
      • If you cancel 60 days or more prior to departure, all your program fee payments will be refunded besides your $350 deposit which is kept on file for future use
      • If you cancel between 30 and 59 days prior to departure, you will receive a 50% refund and your deposit is kept on file for future use
      • If you cancel within 30 days of departure, you will receive no refund, but your deposit is kept on file for future use
      Trip Notes
      1. TOURISM RULES: Some culturally significant sights in Sri Lanka may not allow entry to people wearing hats or hijabs, or to those with covered faces. Examples of cultural sites with such restrictions may include but are not limited to, the Sri Maha Bodhi Tree section or the Anuradhapura Cultural Site, the Dambulla Cave Temple, and Temple of the Tooth in Kandy. Displaying body art or wearing clothing that includes an image of the Buddha is illegal; please be culturally sensitive and respect the law and should you have any such tattoos, keep them covered at all times.
      2. ROADS: Traveling by road in Sri Lanka is certainly not what people are used to in Western countries. Many roadways are single-lane, rules are not always followed, drivers appear to speed, do not stay in their lanes, and overtake in seemingly dangerous situations. Although there are some improvements in the works to the road infrastructure, there is a lot more to be done. As a result, some of the roads are poorly maintained, and this gets even more pronounced during and after the monsoon. As a result, travel time covering relatively short distances is very long in comparison to Western countries.
      3. ACCOMMODATION: Please be aware that properties we stay in with only two stories may not have elevators installed and climbing the stairs with your luggage will be necessary.
      4. TOUR ENDING: Your tour ends in Mirissa. The Colombo airport can be reached by private taxi or bus. Your tour leader can help you arrange a transfer. Please note that it will take about 2.5 hours to get to Colombo from Mirissa.
      Group Leader Description
      All GEEO/G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of G Adventure’s group leaders, which they refer to as Chief Experience Officers (CEOs). The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are traveling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues, and introduce you to our local friends. Our itineraries often have plenty of free time to explore on your own. While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious, and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting – we think it’s the best of both worlds.
      Fitness Level
      This trip includes light walking and hiking that is suitable for most fitness levels. The hardest element to deal with is the heat and humidity.
      Single Travelers
      Half of GEEO’s participants travel by themselves, so please don’t worry if you do not have a travel companion for your trip. Our program fee is for one traveler in double-occupancy accommodation, and GEEO can find you a roommate of the same gender if you do not have a travel companion. Most of our programs have a “My Own Room” option, also known as a “Single Supplement,” which is an extra fee that you can pay to have a room to yourself. You will only incur an additional charge if you specifically request a single room. To see the price for the “My Own Room” option, please find your program on our extra services page. If you want to room alone, please email travel@geeo.org to request a single room. Please note: If you have booked the "My Own Room" option for this tour, you will receive your own single accommodation for all night stops except Day 6 (nature resort homestay).
      Joining Instructions
      Day 1 is an arrival day, and no activities have been planned. Upon arrival to the city on Day 1, or earlier if you have booked pre-accommodation with us, please make your way to the joining hotel. Please note: Check-in time will be in the afternoon. Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note at reception from your tour leader. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on Day 1, usually between 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., during which you will get a chance to meet your tour leader and other travelers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details. If you miss the Welcome Meeting, your tour leader will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need and with instructions for the next morning. The airport in Colombo (Bandaranaike International Airport, also known as Colombo International Airport and Katunayake International Airport) is around 32 km north of the Colombo city center. If you have paid in advance for an arrival transfer, a G Adventures representative will be at the airport to meet you. Your arrival transfer will be arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please call this support number for our local G Adventures Transfer providers: Chaminda Paranavitana Tel.: (+94)112 308 308 | Ext.: 5917 | Mob.: (+94)77 5222 800 (+94) 70 585 3952 Tharanga Siriwardhana Mob: +94 77 642 4060 Worst case, you can take a taxi to your start point hotel. If you decide not book an arrival transfer through GEEO, please be aware that taxi drivers often overcharge. We recommend using the prepaid taxi service offered at the airport – you can make the arrangements at designated counters outside the baggage-claim area after passing through several bank counters. You will be able to change money into the local currency (Sri Lanka Rupee) at exchange counters open 24 hours at the airport. The Airport Taxi service, supervised by the Airport & Aviation Services, operates a counter in the arrival lobby and accept Sri Lanka Rupees. Please hire the vehicle from this counter & make the full payment. They will provide you an official receipt. Unfortunately scammers have set up similar services, so make sure the counter is operated by The Airport & Aviation Services. Your destination, the time of your arrival and the amount of luggage determine the rate, which you pay in advance at the counter. A person will escort you to the designated taxi. If the driver demands more rupees, politely refuse, if they have driven safely you may like to tip him around SLRS 100.
      Emergency Contacts
      Should you need to contact G Adventures during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call their local G Adventures office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible. EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS G Adventures South Asia Manager, Sorab Jassawalla (Delhi, India) >From outside of India: +91 8851806614 >From within Delhi: 8851806614 >From within India, but outside Delhi: 0 8851806614 During Office hours (Weekdays, 9am-5pm Local Time): +66-02-3815574 If you are unable for any reason to contact their local office, they have a toll-free line for North America, which will connect you directly with their Toronto office. In the event that you cannot get through, you can reach a member of their Operations department at the mobile number below. Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100 Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
      Packing List
      Please read this article on GEEO’s blog for our staff’s suggestions on the best gear to pack for your upcoming travels. You must be prepared to carry your own bags and be comfortable carrying them up and downstairs, on and off transportation, and to hotels. As a rule, we try not to have to walk more than 15-20 minutes with your bags, which is why we recommend keeping the weight of your bags between 22-30 lb. Most travelers carry a backpack or rolling bag of small to medium size. No XXL bags please! A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person plus a daypack per person. Health & Safety
      • N95/KN95 face masks (at least a few just in case there is an outbreak within your group)
      • Hand sanitizer
      • Rapid Covid tests/antigen tests (at least 3)
      Suggested Checklist
      • Clothes for religious sites – knees and shoulders must be covered
      • Small towel and swimwear
      • Raincoat and/or umbrella
      • Personal clothing for hot weather – we recommend packing 8-9 days of outfits and doing laundry mid-way through your trip.
      • Shorts – covering knees is advisable for women; some would say men too
      • Long pants
      • Sturdy walking shoes
      • Sport sandals or flip-flops
      • Daypack
      • Insect repellent
      • Sunblock
      • Sunglasses
      • Sun hat
      • Watch or alarm clock
      • Toiletries – your hotels will have soap and shampoo
      • Camera
      • First-aid kit, including: lip salve, aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine, Dramamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, electrolyte powder, insect repellent, extra prescription drugs you may be taking
      Optional Checklist
      • Silk sleep sack
      • Travel pillow
      • Flashlight or headlamp
      • Money belt
      • Water bottle
      • Phone/tablet for internet – most hotels have WiFi
      • Chargers for electronics as well converters/adapters, if needed
      • AirTags or Tile trackers
      • Packing cubes
      • Flip-flops/sandals
      • Earplugs
      • Snacks – packing a few granola bars is a good idea; you can buy snacks when you get there too, so don’t go crazy here
      • Ziplock bags
      • Reading/writing material
      • Hand sanitizer/baby wipes
      • Head scarf for women
      • Light fleece top
      • Cover for backpack or plastic bags to keep clothes dry
      Document Checklist
      • Passport (with photocopies)
      • Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
      • Travel insurance ID card
      • Flight itinerary/boarding pass(es)
      • USD/EUR cash
      • Credit/debit card
      • G Adventures vouchers
      • GEEO Classroom action plans for your group – this is sent a few days before departure
      Laundry
      Laundry facilities are offered at some of our hotels for a charge, or ask your group leader where the nearest laundromat is located. If you want to do your own laundry, we suggest you bring your own non-polluting/biodegradable soap.
      Passports and Visas
      All GEEO trips require that the participant have a valid passport. Please see our general FAQ for information on obtaining a passport. As with all of our trips, we try to provide the most accurate information we can, but governments sometimes change visa rules. It is your responsibility to double check the information we provide below by searching here. U.S. citizens traveling to Sri Lanka for tourism require an electronic travel authorization (ETA) from Sri Lanka's Electronic Travel Authorization System. The visa cost is $75 USD, but after taxes and fees is closer to $100 USD. The ETA can be obtained online in advance or upon arrival, but visitors are strongly urged to use the online system to avoid lengthy delays at the port of entry. Applying in-person is also slightly more expensive.  You will need to upload a passport-sized photo and a scanned copy of your passport bio page (JPG files only—if you assistance converting your images to JPG files or reducing the file size, you can try using this website, or we can assist you). Information that you need for for the ETA/eVisa application:
    • Visa Type: Non-Resident
    • Visa Category: Tourist
    • Purpose of Travel: Sightseeing or holidaying
    • Sub Visa Type: Standard Visitor Visa (6 months)
    • Type of Travel Document: Ordinary Passport
    • Port of Arrival: Bandaranaike International Airport (if you are flying into Colombo)
    • Address in Sri Lanka: GEEO will provide
    • Please see more details about your destination from the U.S. Department of State. Non-American participants should check with their government to find out if they need a visa.
      Money Exchange
      The local currency in Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan rupee (LKR). As currency exchange rates fluctuate, we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com. We recommend that you obtain cash from ATMs while traveling; they will dispense the local currency. We do, however, recommend that you bring at least $200 USD in cash for emergency use or in case you have trouble with the ATMs. Major credit cards are accepted in most shops, but you may be charged an international transaction fee; ask your financial institution about their international fees. Please note that if you are carrying U.S. dollars, the bills should be in good condition (i.e., not torn, wrinkled, or marked on in any way) and dated recently.
      Tipping
      It is customary in Asia to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. Tipping is an expected, though not compulsory, component of this program and an expression of satisfaction with the people who assist you on your trip. Tipping is also one of the most direct ways that you can have a positive economic impact within the local community. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There will be opportunities during the trip to tip your local guides or drivers. You may do this individually, or your tour leader may offer to collect the money and give a tip on behalf of the group. Recommendations for tipping local guides and drivers range from $1-2 USD per person per day, depending on the quality and length of the service. Ask your tour leader for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and expectations. Also, at the end of your program, if you felt your G Adventures tour leader did an outstanding job, a tip would be appreciated. The amount is entirely your personal preference, but as a guideline, $20-30 USD per person per week would be appropriate.
      Vaccinations
      GEEO cannot provide any medical advice, so it is very important to consult your doctor or a travel clinic about which vaccinations you will need for your trip. We recommend contacting Passport Health (http://www.passporthealthusa.com/), which has travel clinics located throughout the United States. You can also check the CDC's recommended vaccinations for your destination. Please take this seriously!
      Flights
      We find the best prices for flights are often available around 90 days before departure, but of course this varies greatly from route to route and year to year. You should wait until this trip is confirmed before you book non-refundable flights. GEEO and G Adventures bear no responsibility for any flights purchased before the trip is confirmed. This program begins in Colombo and ends in Mirissa. Please double-check our itinerary for the date by which you must arrive in Colombo, which usually means departing the U.S. 1-2 days prior. You may want to arrive in Asia one or more days early in case you have flight disruptions. You can arrive at any time you choose, but try to make it in time for our 6:00 p.m. Welcome Meeting on Day 1. You can depart from Mirissa any time on the final day of the program. Your tour leader can help you arrange a transfer; please note that it will take approximately 2.5 hours to get to Colombo from Mirissa.
      Plugs and Converters
      There are two components to provide external power to your device: adapters and transformers (also called electrical converters). The adapter is for your device's plug, adapting the prongs on a standard U.S. two- to three-pronged power cord to fit the local outlets. The transformer/converter changes the local voltage to the voltage used in the U.S. Sri Lanka uses 230V, 50 Hz D and G type plugs. The D has three circular prongs. The G has three square prongs. The voltage is 230V. (Standard U.S. electrical outlets are 120V.) Most new devices, including phones and laptops, are made to work with the different voltage rates, but some devices, like hair dryers, may only work on the U.S. standard of 120V. Check your device's plug or manual to see what voltage range it requires. Most transformer blocks will have an “Input” line that defines its voltage capacity; for example, “Input: 100-240V” means that it will work with voltages between 100V to 240V. If your device can’t handle the higher voltage, you’ll need to purchase a transformer/converter. You can find world transformers/converters online or at many retail stores in the travel section.
      Expectations
      Before you decide to travel with GEEO, it is important that you read all of the information about the program you are considering. Remember, our programs are quite adventurous.
      • The purpose of the accommodation is to provide a safe, well-located place for you to sleep. Sometimes you will be pleasantly surprised, but do not expect luxury as we are trying to keep these trips as inexpensive as possible.
      • The same goes for transportation. We use a mix of transportation that gets our guests from location to location safely. Sometimes you will have full days and nights of transportation as our trips tend to cover a lot of ground. The transportation will often be an adventure in itself.
      • You must be able to easily carry or roll your luggage, so do not over-pack.
      • Many of our programs occur in locations where it is very hot during the day. Please make sure you have thoroughly read the itinerary and can handle the group activities, which sometime include day hikes with your daypacks.
      • We recommend always carrying snacks with you. Meals can sometimes be far apart.
      • Please make sure you understand the role of your tour leader on this trip as they are not the traditional “guide” you may be expecting. While our trips are educational, they aren’t study/lecture trips. We want you to learn through exploring, and much of your experience will be based on how active you choose to be in acquiring knowledge and interacting with locals.
      Hopefully this is the kind of adventure you are interested in!
      Itinerary Disclaimer
      While it is our intention to adhere to the routes described on our website, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable, to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The information on our website is a general guide to the tour and region, and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
      Weather
      Sri Lanka is tropical with distinct dry and wet seasons. The seasons are slightly complicated by having two monsoons. From May to August, the Yala monsoon brings rain to the island’s southwestern half. We will be in the southwestern half of Sri Lanka, as well as the highlands. Colombo and the low-lying coastal regions have an average temperature of 80°F. At Kandy (altitude 500 m), the temperature should be in the 70’s F, while Nuwara Eliya (at 1,889 m) has a temperatures in the 60’s F. The weather doesn’t follow strict rules, though – it often seems to be raining where it should be sunny, and sunny where it should be raining. Rainfall tends to be emphatic – streets can become flooded in what seems like only minutes. Out-of-season travel has its advantages: not only do the crowds disappear, it also doesn’t rain all the time.

      Costs

      Please keep in mind that this trip offers some free time to pursue activities that interest you. Make sure you look over all of the optional activities and note these additional costs when deciding whether you can afford this program. The prices below are rough estimates for budgeting your trip.
      Tour Company Fee
      See our price in the top right corner
      Optional Activities
      $50-250 USD
      International Airfare from the U.S.
      Roughly $1,400-2,000 USD If you require assistance in booking your international airfare, we would be happy to help you.
      Insurance
      $79-200 USD Please note: It is mandatory for all of our travelers to have Emergency Medical insurance that covers both emergency evacuation and repatriation to the sum of $200,000 USD. We also strongly recommend purchasing cancellation insurance as an add-on.
      Tipping
      We recommend $60 USD for your G Adventures tour leader. Another $50 for drivers and other tips.
      Visa
      $50 USD
      Meals Not Listed in the Itinerary
      $225-300 USD
      Laundry, Drinks, Phone Calls, etc.
      Make sure you budget for these types of expenses
      Vaccines
      Variable. Please consult your doctor.
      Souvenirs
      Variable. At your personal discretion.
      Non-Educator Donation
      $100 USD (suggested donation) This is only for non-educator guests traveling with an educator on a GEEO trip. Educators and retired educators should not make this donation.

      Optional Activities

      Most optional activities are booked and paid for locally, sometimes in the local currency, and you do not have to decide in advance which ones you would like to sign up for. The prices listed are based on the latest information we have received from our participants and G Adventures. They are not guaranteed to be accurate. Please use them as a rough guide for budgeting your trip.
      Kandy
      Kandyan Cultural Dance: $3-5 USD per person Be swept away by an entertaining performance that will provide insight into the local culture in Kandy. Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens: $10 USD per person In the colorful Royal Botanical Gardens in Peradeniya, you can see 300 varieties of orchids of Sri Lanka as well as a range of other plants. Visit to Ayurvedic Hospital: Rates depend on if you get an Ayurvedic treatment You might also want to visit the Ayurvedic Hospital to learn about the history behind Ayurveda and the role it plays in Sri Lankan society. At the Hospital, you will also gain an understanding of Ayurvedic oil massage treatments and their benefits.
      Nuwara Eliya
      Horton Plains Trek: 4-4.5 hrs, $25 USD per person, $35 USD per group Get close to nature and stunning scenery on this Horton Plains Trek. Hike 9km (6 mi) into the Horton Plains and walk through the clouds to discover a majestic drop that provides amazing views over the plains into the sea.
      Ella
      Badulla City Tour: $35 USD per person, 2 people minimum Explore the provincial capital on a city tour. Enjoy visits to St Mark's Church, the Hindu Kataragame Devale, and Buddhist Muthiyagana Vihara, along the way. Dunhinda Falls Excursion: $30 USD per person, 2 people minimum Trek to the picturesque Dunhinda Falls, located just outside the town of Badulla. Stop to relax and enjoy the view of this impressive, 64m-high (210 ft) waterfall. Demodara Nine Arch Bridge: $30 USD per person, 2 people minimum The iconic Nine Arch Bridge made of stone and cement is a viaduct connecting Ella and Demodara train stations. Don't look down, this 100 year old bridge, also referred to as the "Nine Skies Bridge", can be found almost 3100 feet above sea level. With train service still operating, check the train schedule and be sure to catch a glimpse of the bridge in action!
      Yala
      Second Yala National Park Safari: 5-6 hrs, $36 USD per person Head out on an additional safari in Yala National Park. Keep an eye out for leopards, elephants, jackals, sloth bears, sambars, spotted deer, crocodiles, and more than 200 bird species. Learn about its diverse wildlife and the history of the park.