Happy and unexpected discoveries
Emirates Holidays offers a six-day journey that allows visitors to explore the history, culture and natural beauty of Sri Lanka.
The tour starts from the coast and goes high into the mountains. Along the way, travellers will visit Sri Lanka’s ancient cities including Kandy, the capital from 1590 to 1815, Nuwara Eliya, also known as ‘Little England’ for its colonial architecture, and Colombo, the busy capital, where shopping for souvenirs is a must.
Sri Lanka has long attracted visitors to its shores. Arab traders, who came for cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and vanilla more than five centuries ago, called the place ‘Serendib’ from which comes ‘serendipity’, the faculty of making happy and unexpected discoveries.
Modern travellers tend to view Sri Lanka in the same way. It may be a small island, but it offers a staggering variety of lovely landscapes, intriguing cuisines, colourful festivals, colonial history and indigenous culture.
The warm, friendly people that inhabit this fertile land are the inheritors of an ancient heritage; civilisations that built the rock fortress of Sigiriya, the palaces of Anuradhapura and Kandy’s Temple of the Tooth have flourished here for nearly three millenniums.
Today, the capital Colombo’s architectural imprint includes churches with ornate Iberian façades, massive Dutch forts and assorted examples of British colonial buildings, all blending well with the city’s modern development.
Upon arrival at Colombo’s Bandaranayake International Airport, transport will be provided to the hotel. In the afternoon a visit to the cave temples will kick-start the adventure. The following morning there will be a visit to the world famous Sigiriya (Lion’s Rock), which is an ancient rock fortress and palace ruins situated in the central Matale District, surrounded by the remains of an extensive network of gardens, reservoirs and other structures.
Sigiriya is also renowned for its 1,500-year-old frescos, which are reminiscent of the Ajanta Caves of India. Later in the afternoon visitors will have the option of visiting Polonnaruwa, the 12th century capital.
On the third day, en route to Kandy, a visit to the elephant orphanage at Pinnawela is scheduled.
Once in Kandy, visitors can explore the Temple of the Tooth, the Royal Palace and the magnificent Peradeniya Botanical Gardens.
The following morning, visitors can enjoy the waterfalls on the way to visiting a tea factory and an overnight stay in Nuwara Eliya.
On the fifth day, vistors will be driven through splendid scenery to Colombo, Sri Lanka’s buzzing capital. There will be leisure time in the evening, when guests can visit tourist highlights such as Old Fort, Galle Road, Colombo 7 district, Racecourse Avenue, York Street, the port and Green Path.
On the sixth day transport will be provided to Bandaranayake International Airport for the return flight. The Serendib Explorer six-day package tour includes return flights on Emirates Airline, five nights accommodation on bed-and-breakfast basis and car transfers.
The Emirates Holiday Sri Lanka tour is also available as a private chauffer-drive which includes car, driver and pre-booked accommodation with a choice of three to four, or four to five star hotels.
Emirates Holidays also provide tailor-made excursions to accommodate personal needs. Visitors have the option of extending their stay in Sri Lanka to enjoy a couple of days relaxing on the beach.
Emirates Airline flies daily between Malta and Dubai.
Flight EK 108 leaves Malta at 3.40 p.m. and arrives in Dubai at 00.40 a.m. the following day.
Emirates flies thrice daily from Dubai to Colombo in Sri Lanka. The airline EK650 leaves Dubai International Airport at 2.45 a.m. and arrives in Bandaranayake Airport at 8.45 a.m.
For more details call the Emirates sales office on 2557 7255; visit www.emirates.com/mt or contact your travel agent.