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Pedal through Paradise: 10 Best Things to Do in Sri Lanka

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Pedal through Paradise: 10 Best Things to Do in Sri Lanka

Lirene CilliersBy Lirene Cilliers   Posted 22nd Aug 2023

Ah! Sri Lanka – an untouched paradise where the sun kisses the ocean and whispers secrets to the palm trees.  
If you’re reading this article it means you’ve wondered why adventurers, much like you, flock to Sri Lanka – could it be the allure of stunning landscapes? The opportunity to cycle beneath jungle canopies? The chance to spot a leopard on safari? Or perhaps savoring the local cuisine that tells tales of generations?  
You’re not alone – the idea of a Sri Lanka bike trip has sparked curiosity in countless souls.  
But Sri Lanka is much more than sparkling shores. In this article, we’re diving deeper – it’s not just ticking off tourist spots – it’s about finding experiences that resonate with the adventurer in you.  
From venturing up fog-shrouded mountains to marvel over the rolling tea plantations beneath, we’re unlocking Sri Lanka’s hidden gems. So, grab your helmet, hop on your bike, and let's plunge into a journey off the tourist map and onto the trails less taken.  

1. Cycle through the countryside around Sigiriya and explore its rock fortress: 

Let's start this adventure with a splash of history and a dash of pedal power. Hop on your bike and cycle through the charming countryside to Sigiriya's rock fortress where you can feel the echoes of an ancient kingdom, once ruled by King Kasyapa.  

Ruins of the historic citadel tower above the canopy, and below you can wander through the ingenious water gardens. A visit to this UNESCO World Heritage Site lets you imagine the lives that once thrived within its walls.  

With its beautifully landscaped gardens, water features, and frescoes of celestial nymphs, Sigiriya Rock Fortress paints a vivid picture of opulence in the 5th century. 

2. Mystical Caves of Dambulla:

Dambulla's mystical caves are more than just hollows in the earth – they're doorways to a world of spiritual wonder. 
As you step back in time into the cool embrace of these ancient chambers, adorned with countless Buddha statues and vibrant murals covering an area of 2,100 m2 (about four times the area of a basketball court), you'll realize that these caves are more than stone and paint. They hold stories of devotion and faith dating back to the third century BC, which is woven into the very fabric of rock.

3. Climb Little Adam’s Peak for Sweeping Views: 

Okay, so you've heard about climbing mountains for panoramic views – standard, right? But let us introduce you to Little Adam’s Peak.  
Named after the larger Adam's Peak, this summit stands as a testament to both nature's grandeur and the human spirit of exploration. The climb to the top is a gentle trek, making it accessible to both beginners and experienced hikers, so it is the perfect blend of challenge and reward. Once on top, you'll enjoy beautiful sweeping views of the surrounding countryside and a great photo opportunity. 

4. Spend a Night in Sinharaja Rainforest and Walk Through the Forest: 

Sinharaja Rainforest, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, is not just a haven for biodiversity, as a primary rainforest it is also a living link to prehistoric times. Within its lush embrace, species have thrived for millions of years, inviting you to be a part of this ancient tale.  

In addition to its rich flora and fauna, Sinharaja Rainforest is an area of deep ecological significance. An impressive 60% of the trees here are found nowhere else on Earth, and shelters more than half of Sri Lanka's exclusive mammal and butterfly species, alongside a vibrant tapestry of insects, reptiles, and elusive amphibians that defy the ordinary. 

5. Dramatic Mountain Views at Horton Plains National Park: 

Walking through this park is quite literally like stepping onto the edge of the world. The trail to World's End, though it might sound ominous, will take your breath away in more ways than one.

As you approach the precipice, the earth seemingly drops away, leaving you suspended between sky and land. The air is crisp, the view is endless, and for a moment, you're a solitary soul gazing upon a masterpiece nature has painted for you. 

6. Tea Plantation and Factory Tour: 

Walk through the lush rows of tea plants, you'll trace the journey of tea leaves from the earth to your cup. It's a lesson in patience, in the art of nurturing something until it transforms into perfection. 

By the time you leave, you'll sip your tea with a newfound appreciation, understanding that even the simplest things have intricate stories to tell.

7. Jeep Safari through Yala National Park:

A jeep safari through Yala National Park is the perfect way to experience Sri Lanka’s wildlife.  

The Park's history is a tale of conservation success, having transformed from a hunting ground to a sanctuary for wildlife. As you set out on safari, remember that each sighting is a testimony to the dedication that has revived and preserved these wild realms.  

Did you know that Yala National Park boasts the highest density of leopards in the world? The chance to spot these elusive creatures adds an extra layer of excitement to your safari adventure.

8. Take a Train to Ella: 

A journey to Sri Lanka would not be complete without this iconic and most beautiful rail route. The scenic train transfer not only offers stunning views but also a glimpse into the British colonial influence that left an indelible mark on Sri Lanka's landscapes.

9. Unveiling Galle's Coastal Fort: 

Navigate the cobblestone streets and thread through centuries of stories at Galle’s Coastal Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The fort's walls meet the ocean, where waves rhythmically crash against the ramparts, and inside is a living piece of Sri Lanka's rich history, intertwining with Portuguese, Dutch, and British colonial stories.
As you wander the ramparts on the southern tip of Sri Lanka, soaking in the sea breeze and the echoes of history, you'll find a connection with the country's past, and leave Galle understanding that every corner of Sri Lanka has layers waiting to be unraveled. 

10. Visit Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka's "Little Britain" 

Ah, Nuwara Eliya – the colonial-era hill station also known as "Little England," is a testament to Sri Lanka's past. The town's architecture and ambiance transport you to a time when British colonials sought respite from the tropical heat in the central highlands, amidst its charming landscape. This past has shaped the town's unique character to this day.  

The picturesque golf course, horse racing traditions, and Tudor-style architecture evoke the essence of British influence and contribute to it's undeniable charm. While the town itself is quaint and charming, the real beauty is in the surrounding forest and tea plantations which is why it's fantastic for exploring by bike.  

Packages That Promise Adventure 

Throughout this journey, the thread that binds these experiences together isn't just a physical path; it's a shared connection with the stories, history, and soul of Sri Lanka.  These experiences are like puzzle pieces that fit together to form a much larger and more colorful picture of the country.

Hungry for more insights? Check out our other Sri Lanka blogs— 
Wildlife in Sri Lanka: A Checklist 
Is Travelling Sri Lanka safe? 
Top 5 Bike and Beach Destinations 
And for those who've caught the travel bug, our Sri Lanka cycling trips offer the chance to dive even deeper into the island's wonders.  
So, let your curiosity and your spirit of adventure take the lead. Sri Lanka awaits, and there's no better way to experience it than by hopping onto one of our cycling tours


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