Travel through Horathapola, Anuradhapura, Mihintale, Habarana, Kandy and Colombo on an 8-day journey discovering the history and significance of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.
Starting with arrival in Horathapola, guests are then taken to the ancient city of Anuradhapura to visit the Arankele Jungle Hermitage and Hasthikuchchi Temple, one of the region’s earliest Buddhist temples. Proceed to Mihintale to visit the Mihintale Rock, which is an important Buddhist site as it is considered as the place where Buddhism was introduced to Sri Lanka.
On the fourth day, proceed to Habarana with en-route stops at such significant sites as the 40-foot Aukana Buddha statue (from the 5th century BC), the Enderagala Jungle Meditation Centre to witness meditating Bhikkhus at their cells and a pooja ceremony, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Sigiriya Rock Fortress.
Next, on the way to Kandy, travellers visit the Dambulla Cave Rock Temple complex, another UNESCO World Heritage Site which is famous for its Buddhist sculptures and murals. Upon arrival in the hill country capital Kandy, it’s time to wander and get a feel for this wonderful city. Then, in the early evening, enjoy a performance of Kandyan dancing and drumming followed by a visit the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha. To experience the Buddhist tradition and ways, we suggest staying for the evening pooja ceremony.
After a relaxed morning, enjoy a walk through the Udawattakele Sanctuary, a historic forest reserve on a hill-ridge in the city of Kandy. The sanctuary is famous for its extensive avifauna and also contains a great variety of plant species. Moving on from Kandy to Colombo, visit the ancient Kelaniya Raja Maha Viharaya with a history that dates back over 2,560 years and paintings depicting important events in the life of the Buddha and history of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.
Once in Colombo, begin exploring by visiting Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple and the Simamalaka Shrine designed by Sri Lanka’s most iconic architect Geoffrey Bawa. Other sites of interest include the Old Parliament House, Colombo National and Dutch Museums, Town Hall and Independence Square.
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