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Sri Lanka

Although Sri Lanka is a little island nation, it is packed with history, biodiversity, culture, and astounding places to discover. The blue sea, white-sand beaches, lush green landscape and palm trees swaying in the balmy sea-breeze make this small teardrop shaped island, undoubtedly a tropical paradise and it is only befitting that it is known as the “Paradise Isle”. The hill country is also home to lush green carpeted plantations of the celebrated Ceylon tea. The champagne of teas is delicately plucked by connoisseur hands and still processed in the same traditional methods, as they have been done for the past 300 years.

As you travel through this beautiful island you will be welcomed by the warm friendly smiles of a hospitable and proud people, eager to share their beautiful homeland with you. Don't be surprised if a stranger invites you home for tea or to a family meal - it's quite normal! Sri Lankans enjoy a leisurely pace of life and a flexible impression of time. Sri-Lanka has a multitude of religions and festivals, and its calendar just as many public holidays; all full-moon days are public holidays, in order to observe a Buddhist tradition of peace and serenity. So, while all banks and government offices remain closed, you can be enthralled by traditional Buddhist ceremonies at almost every temple on such a day. Their devotion to the religion has resulted in numerous beautiful landmarks around the country that are a delight to explore.

Though often simply considered India's tropical sister, Sri Lanka has a fascinating culture and history all its own. Marco Polo was so impressed with Sri Lanka that he declared it the most beautiful island of its size in the world, and most visitors tend to agree;  from dense jungles - home to shy leopards and wild elephants - to empty golden beaches; from monasteries and temples peopled by saffron-clad monks to cool, misty mountains contoured with tea and dotted with the bright saris of pickers. Choose from colonial history, the legacy of the Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa, the ancient cities of Polonnaruwa, Dambulla and Anuradhapura - which form the Cultural Triangle - the old capital of Kandy and the hill station of Nuwara Eliya. Sri Lanka is the epitome of paradise, and you cannot avoid being drawn to its treasures.

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When to go

Sri Lanka has a tropical climate. Upland areas are cooler and more temperate, and coastal areas are cooled by sea breezes. There are two monsoons, which occur May to July and December to January.

Flying time

From London to Colombo approximately 11-12 hours with Emirates via Dubai

Time difference

GMT +5  ½.


Passport & Visa

Visa Required?
British No
Other EU No

Passport should have one blank page and be valid for at least two months from date of departure required by all nationals. 


Health requirements

Diphtheria Sometimes
Hepatitis A Yes
Malaria  Sometimes
Tetanus Yes
Typhoid Sometimes
Yellow Fever No


Inoculation regulations can change at short notice. Please take medical advice in the case of doubt. Where 'Sometimes' appears in the table above, precautions may be required depending on the season and region visited.