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Discovering Sri Lanka: A Miniature Version of Asia

Sri Lanka, often likened to a smaller version of Asia, offers a rich tapestry of experiences. From tea plantations reminiscent of Malaysia, rice fields like those in Indonesia, temples that echo Thailand, to Indian curries, wildlife, and tropical beaches, this small island is a treasure trove of diverse attractions. It’s compact enough to explore by car in three weeks. If possible, hire a local driver who knows the country like the back of their hand and can often double as an excellent guide. We had a chat with the travel-savvy moms from Sri LankaKids about their top 5 highlights for a family trip to Sri Lanka. Interested in their tips?

Top 5 Family-Friendly Activities in Sri Lanka

1. Snorkeling at Pigeon Island

For the best snorkeling experience, Pigeon Island is the place to be. Located near Nilaveli and Uppuveli on the east coast, it boasts white beaches and swaying palm trees. Arrive early to enjoy the beach all to yourself. The highlight? Spotting a reef shark within seconds of snorkeling. After your underwater adventure, relax on one of the wooden benches lining the beach.

2. Safari at Yala National Park

Experience the thrill of a safari at Yala National Park. With its red sand, dry bushes, and muddy puddles, it’s the perfect setting for an adventure. Spot leopards, crocodiles, wild elephants, buffalos, and even a black bear. After a day of exploration, unwind in a luxurious safari tent equipped with a private toilet and shower, and enjoy a meal under the stars.

3. Climbing Lion Rock

Lion Rock, located near Sigiriya, is a must-visit. Standing 200 meters high, it offers a panoramic view of the surrounding jungle. The climb, though challenging, is rewarding. Along the way, you’ll find old rock paintings and playful monkeys. The view from the top is worth every step.

4. Exploring Temple Ruins at Polonnaruwa

Polonnaruwa, the old king city, is one of Sri Lanka’s major archaeological sites. The best way to explore this vast temple complex is by bike. Despite the heat, the friendly locals selling refreshing coconuts make the journey enjoyable. Start at the back and take your time cycling back to the entrance, where you might encounter some monkeys.

5. Visiting Ella

Ella, known for its tea plantations, is a laid-back village nestled in the cooler mountains. The best way to reach Ella is by train, which takes you through the tea plantations and offers stunning views. Don’t forget to hike to Little Adam’s Peak while you’re there.

If your kids are older and looking for more adventure, check out these 5 adventurous things to do in Kalpitiya, or this ultimate Sri Lanka itinerary. For solo travelers, here are some tips for travelling Sri Lanka solo.

Are you planning a family trip to Sri Lanka? SriLankaKids, a sister company of the tour operator RiksjaKids, specializes in creating unforgettable holidays for families with young children. Our travel experts have extensive knowledge of Sri Lanka and regularly travel there with their own families. They are eager to help you plan the holiday of a lifetime!


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