Tour

fromUSD1,250.00

RAMAYANA TOUR

Departure Date

Daily

Duration

13 NIGHTS / 14 DAYS

Views

14

DAY 01 | AIRPORT / CHILAW

Meet and assist on arrival at airport and transfer to Chilaw and check in.

En-route visit Negombo.

Negombo is a major city in Sri Lanka, situated on the west coast and at the mouth of the Negombo Lagoon, in Western Province. Negombo is the fourth largest city in Sri Lanka and it is also the administrative capital Centre of Negombo Division. Negombo is one of the major commercial hubs in Sri Lanka and it is a very important economic Centre in the country with about 144,551 inhabitants within city limits.

Negombo is known for its centuries old fishing industry, with busy fish markets and long, sandy beaches. Negombo is a westernized, vibrant city and it is one of the major tourist destinations in the country. The main international airport (Bandaranayke International Airport) of Sri Lanka is in Negombo Metropolis.

Rest of the day at leisure.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 02 | CHILAW / ANURADHAPURA

Breakfast at hotel.

After breakfast visit the Munneshwaram Temple.

The Munneswaram Kovil close to Chilaw is one of the 5 major Shiva temples of Sri Lanka and Rameswaram islands. They are called Ishvarams. According to a Tamil legend, the temple is situated at a place where King Rama prayed to Shiva after committing the worst crime according to Hindu Dharma, namely Brahmahasti, the killing of a priest, because Ravana who had to be killed by Rama in order to liberate Sita, was of Brahmin caste. Rama stopped the Vimana vehicle at Munneswaram because of his feeling that the Doshana sin was not following him at this place. So he ascended from the vimana and prayed to God Shiva asking for a remedy. Shiva advised Rama to install four lingams at Manavari, Trinco, Mannar and Rameswaram for this purpose.

Visit Manavari Temple.

Manavari, about 6 kms north of Chilaw, is the first place where Lord Rama installed a Lingam, as a remedy to Lord Shiva after committing Brahmincide by killing the King Ravana who was a Brahmin. This Shiva Lingam in Manavari is called Ramalingam because it was made by Lord Rama. There are only two Lingams in the world named after Lord Rama, the other is in Rameswaram in India.

Transfer from Chilaw to Anuradhapura.

Arrive at hotel in Anuradhapura.

Afternoon Anuradhapura City tour.

Visit the 1st ancient capital of Sri Lanka and the city sacred to Buddhists. Visit the sacred Bo tree (Ficus Religiosa) the sapling brought from North India under which Buddha attained illumination. The Brazen Palace with its 1600 granite columns, the Ruwanveliseya. The ruins of the Abhayagiri and Jetavanarama monasteries, the Samadhi Buddha statue and the twin ponds.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 03 | ANURADHAPURA / TRINCOMALEE

Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer from Anuradhapura to Trincomalee.

Arrive at your hotel in Trincomalee.

Afternoon visit the Koneswaram Temple and Sankari Devi Temple.

Thiru Koneswaram is a wonderful temple located on a rock promontory of Trincomalee. It was built by Rishi Agastya on the instructions of Lord Shiva who was impressed by the devotion of King Ravana. This place is unique in this respect because the Lord built a temple for his devotee as a reward for his devotion. Lord Rama is believed to have offered his prayers here, too, in order to get rid of the malediction of killing Ravana who was a Brahmin, meaning Brahmahasthi Dosham. The famous temple built here during the glorious era of the Tamil Pallava and Chola and Pandya empires, was destroyed by bigoted Portuguese Christians between 1622 and 1624.

Adjacent to Trincomalee’s famous Koneswaram temple there is another shrine; it is small in size but of some significance for Hindu pilgrims. This Shankari Devi temple is a reconstruction at a new place. The original Shankari Devi temple, said to be built by Ravana, was the first in the list of Ashta Dasha (18) Shakti Pitas written down by Adi Shankara, but its whole cliff was destroyed by Portuguese cannon balls. Only a pillar for commemoration is placed on that spot now. And it is believed that the original idol of the Goddess has been preserved and replaced, being venerated now in this nearby new Shankari Devi temple.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 04 | TRIMCOMALEE / MINERAL POOL / POLONNARUWA / SIGIRIYA

Breakfast at hotel.

Visit Mineral Water pool at Kanniya.

Kanniya Hot Springs is famous hot well in Sri Lanka from the past. There are seven wells in a  square shape. Wells are only 3–4 feet deep and you can clearly see the bottom. The temperature is considerably high but varies from one spring to another. Wells run out of water, when 10-15 buckets of water are taken out.

The pre-history of Kanniya Hot water spring goes back Ravana era and the first written references to the Hot water spring is found in the epic Ramayana. According to the notice board displayed by the Provincial Council describing this hot water spring is connected with Hindu culture. Most of the Tamils in Sri Lanka doing the religious rites for their lost loved one in this hot water spring. It is believed King Ravana started these religious rites for his mother.

In the ancient time, there was a Buddhist temple complex in this site and the entrance is a part of a Buddhist monastery. Today this site is under the authority of Sri Lankan Archaeological department.

Transfer from Kanniya to Polonnaruwa.

Visit the ruins at Polonnaruwa.

Polonnaruwa is the 2nd ancient capital of Sri Lanka of the 11th century. On arrival at the city visit the modern archaeological museum followed by Royal palace of King Prarakrama Bahu the Great. The quadrangle of temples with its Thuparamaya, the Circular Temple (the Vatadage) the ancient temples of the sacred tooth relic and the Sath Mahal Prasadaya. The famous Gal Vihara with its colossal Buddha statues carved on monolithic granite. The Kirivehere and the Lankathilaka temple. Afterwards visit a wood carving centre to witness the art of mask making.

Transfer from Polonnaruwa to Sigiriya.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 05 | SIGIRIYA / DAMBULLA / SIGIRIYA

Breakfast at hotel.

Visit Sigiriya Rock Fortress.

Climb Sigiriya rock, the ‘Rock Fortress in the sky” built in the 5th century AD by the parricide king Kasyappa. The archaeological findings bear testimony to a well-developed urban planning, architecture, gardening, engineering, hydraulic technology and art. ‘The celestial ladies’ of Sigiriya, the mirror wall and the lion’s stair way bear testimony to the splendour of a bygone era.  Sigiriya has been declared a world heritage by UNESCO.

Afternoon transfer from Sigiriya to Dambulla.

Visit the Cave temples at Dambulla.

Visit the famous Dambulla rock temple dating back to the 1st Century BC. Which served as the refuge to King Valagambahu of Anuradhapura in 1st Century BC. The five grotto shrines contain numerous images of Buddha and guardian deities. The frescoes on the walls and ceilings date back to the Kandyan period. i.e. 15th to 18th centuries. The view from top of the rock is breath-taking.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 06 | SIGIRIYA / WERAGANTOTA / SEETA KOTUWA / KANDY

Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer to Mahiyanganaya.

Visit Weragantota.

Weragantota means “place of aircraft landing” in Sinhala language. It is believed to be the airport where Sitadevi landed when she was abducted to Lanka in King Ravana’s Pushpaka Vimana. In the surrounding area, now covered by jungle, once was the location of Ravana’s city Lankapura. According to the Ramayana the city had a beautiful palace for queen Mandodari.

Visit Seeta Kotuwa.

Seeta Kotuwa is situated close to Gurulupotha, Hasalaka. It is a beautiful remote spot, surrounded by streams and waterfalls and limestone caves and abundant flora and fauna, where ruins of a typical forest monastery from the late Anuradhapura centuries (7th to 10th century) can be visited. But the name Sita Kotuwa meaning “Sita’s fortress” connects it to the Ramayana Trail. The area is said to have been the beautiful palace of queen Mandodari. Sitadevi was held captive in this palace until she was moved to Asoka Vatika. Sita Kotuwa means Sita’s fortress.

Transfer to Kandy.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 07 | KANDY / PINNAWALA / KANDY

Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer to Pinnawala.

Visit the Elephant Orphanage at Pinnawala. Initiated in 1975 by the state zoological department with a few orphaned baby elephants today has developed into a major tourist attraction. The baby elephants are bottle- fed with milk and the hard numbering over 60 are driven to the nearby river Maha Oya for a refreshing river bath. It is a delight to watch them frolic in the water.

Return to your hotel in Kandy.

Afternoon Kandy city tour.

Kandy is the centre of Sinhalese culture and Buddhism in Sri Lanka. The Daladamaligawa, the Temple of the sacred tooth relic occupies a place of pride and devotion. The lake of Kandy adds charm and serenity to the ancient royal city. From the Upper Lake drive the visitor could enjoy a bird’s view of the city of Kandy.

Atend a cultural pageant depicting the Sri Lankan traditional dances at a cultural centre in the city.

Thereafter visit the Temple of the Tooth during the evening ‘pooja’ ceremony where the sacred Tooth Relic of Buddha is enshrined and venerated.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 08 | KANDY / HANUMAN TEMPLE / NUWARAELIYA

Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer from Kandy to Ramboda.

Visit Hanuman Temple.

The Sri Lankan branch of the Chinmaya mission, committed to promoting the Ramayana philosophy as well as Ramayana Trail pilgrimages, has built a temple with Hanuman as a presiding deity in Ramboda at the Kandy to Nuwara Eliya mainroad. There is a new five metres tall granite statue of Rama’s devote supporter. Hanuman is believed to have started his search for Sita in the Baroda hills. Hanuman traditionally was not as popular among Sri Lankan Tamil devotees as he indeed is in India, because he devastated parts of the island with his burning tail. But in recent times Hindu missionaries and local Tamil spiritual leaders began building shrines for worshipping Hanuman in Sri Lanka, too. The Tamil word for Ramboda, Rampadai, means “Rama’s force”, this is why Ramboda is believed to be the area where Rama collected his troops.

Visit Tea Factory.

Transfer to Nuwara Eliya.

Arrive at your hotel in Nuwara Eliya.

Afternoon Nuwara Eliya city tour.

Drive through tea country. Visit a Tea factory and see how black tea is manufactured and enjoy a freshly brewed cup of Ceylon tea. Arrive in Nuwara Eliya. Visit the ‘little England’ created by the British tea planters in the 19th century. The city at an altitude of 2000 meters is the summer capital attracting visitors throughout the year. The 18 hole golf course is considered to be the most picturesque in whole of Asia. The Victorian style buildings, the old race course and Lake Gregory are reminiscent of the British rule.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 09 | SEETHA AMMAN TEMPLE / HAKGALA GARDEN / DIVURUMPOLA / BANDARAWELA.

Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer to Seeta Eliya.

Visit Seeta Amman temple.

The Seeta Amman Temple, located halfway between the highland village Seeta Eliya and the Hakgala Botanical Gardens, has become the most venerated of all Ramayana Trail sites in Sri Lanka, because it is believed to be the place where Seeta lived most of the time of her captivity on the island of Lanka. After she refused to stay in Ravana’s magnificent palace she was transferred to Ashok Vatika or Ashokavanam where she lived under Ashoka trees. It was here that Ravana’s wife Mandodari visited her and that Hanuman met her for the first time, identifying himself with the finger ring of Rama. Seeta is said to have bathed in the nearby stream. There are remarkable holes in the rocks at the river bank believed to be footprints of Lord Hamunan.

Visit Hakgala Botanical Gardens.

Visit Divirumpola.

Divurumpola is said to be the location where Sita underwent the famous fire ordeal Agni Pariksha, in order to prove her chastity. From the flames arose the fire god Agni who was invoked by Sita. He lifted her from the flames unharmed and presented her to Lord Rama who explained this test was only necessary to prove the truth of her purity and innocence to everybody. Divurumpola is said to have been the location of this episode, because the Sinhalese name means a ‘marketplace of oath’. Today the temple is respected as a suitable place for oaths that can be helpful in settling disputes between parties.

Transfer to Bandarawela.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 10 | BANDARAWELA / RAVANA WATERFALL / RAVANA CAVES / KATARAGAMA

Breakfast at hotel.

Transfer to Ella.

Visit Ravana Waterfalls.

The Ravana Ella Falls and the Ravana Ella Cave are located close to the Wellawaya main road in the famous valley called Ella gap, only about 6 kms away from the town of Ella well known for its splendid views to the Ella gap. The cascading waterfall measures about 25 meters. It is believed that Seeta bathed in a pool that accumulated the water falling from this waterfall. The nearby Ravana Ella cave is quite small, only 50 meters long. As in the case of Ishthripura Cave in Welimada, legend has it that it was used by King Ravana to hide princess Seeta. It is believed to belong to a network of tunnels also connecting it to the Dova temple and to all the palaces and airports and dairy farms of King Ravana. Archaeological findings in the Ravana Cave include a human skull dating back to 20,000 BC.

Visit Ravana Cave.

These tunnels prove beyond doubt the architectural brilliance of King Ravana. These tunnels served as a quick means of transport through the hills and also as a secret passage. These tunnels networked all the important cities, airport and dairy farms. A close look at these tunnels indicates that they are where a palace and a tunnel existed. Existing tunnels mouths are situated in Ishtripura at Welimada, Ravana cave at Bandarawela, Senapitiya at Halagala, Ramboda, Labookellie, Wariyapola, Matale and Sitakotuwa Hasalaka. In addition there are many more tunnels.

Transfer to Kataragama.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 11 | KATARAGAMA

Breakfast at hotel.

Visit Kataragama Temple.

Kataragama is the name of the God and his hometown as well. Kataragama is the Sinhalese form of Skanda, also known as Subhramaniya. He usually is called Murugan or Karthikeya by Tamils. His local consort Valli and his Indian consort Teyvanai (Devasena) and his brother Ganesha are worshipped in their respective own shrines in the holy city of Kataragama, too. Sinhalese worship Skanda-Kataragama as one of their four or five national Gods, especially as protector of the island’s south. For Buddhists, Kataragama is a place additionally sanctified by a visit of the Buddha. Even Wedda Tribals and Muslim Sufis regard Kataragama as a prominent place of worshipping God. Kataragama deiyo furthermore is linked to the Ramayana Trail legend. Lord Indra is said to have given him orders to join the battle at the last day of the war to protect Lord Rama from the powerful wrath of Lanka’s demon king Ravana.

Rest of the day at leisure.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 12 | USSANGODA / COLOMBO

Breakfast at hotel.

After breakfast transfer to Colombo.

Visit Ussangoda en-route.

Ussangoda is a strange coastal area because of its lack of trees. Its serpentine rock contains heavy toxic metals. Only specific smaller plants were able to adapt to this soil. But according to the Ramayana legend, there are two more explanations for the baldness of Ussangoda. After meeting Sitadevi, Lord Hanuman provoked the mighty King Ravana and his army of Rakshasas. It resulted in Lord Hanuman’s tail being set on fire by Rakshasas. Hanuman in turn went on to torch parts of King Ravana’s empire with his burning tail. Ussangoda is said to be one of these burnt areas. Besides the Ramyana Trail legend has it that earlier on the Ussangoda plateau was used an airport by King Ravana for his Dandu Monara peacock chariot, before Hanuman devastated the landing site.

Arrive at your hotel in Colombo after visiting Roomassala temple.

 

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 13 | COLOMBO / ANJANEYAR TEMPLE / KELANIYA [VIBEESHANA] TEMPLE / COLOMBO

Breakfast at hotel.

After breakfast visit the first Anjaneyar temple at Colombo 06.

Hanuman is often called Anjaneyar by Tamils, as his mother’s name is Anjan. This Kovil is the first Anjaneyar temple in Sri Lanka and the only one on the island dedicated to Lord Hanuman in his Panchamuga form; meaning five faces. And it is said to be the only temple in the world to have a chariot for Anjaneyar. Its chariot festival is held annually at the end of December or in the beginning of January. It is one of the most popular processions in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo. Visitors are advised to wash hands and feet before entering the temple and not to cross hands inside the temple.

Visit Kelaniya temple and Gangaramaya.

Kelaniya is a Buddhist sanctuary because it was believed to have been visited by the Buddha himself. Within the temple premises there is a Hindu shrine, too. It is dedicated to Lord Vibhishana who was the younger brother of Ravana but during the legendary war on Lanka a supporter of Lord Rama, because he disapproved of Ravana’s abduction of Sita. After Ravana’s death Rama appointed Vibhishana as the new King of Lanka. Vibhishana is venerated by Sinhalese Buddhists as a God, they believe him to be one of the main protectors of the island, especially in its western territories.

Afternoon Colombo city tour.

Visit Colombo Fort, the old administrative and business center where the leading banks are housed. Pettah, the oriental bazaar, the street of the gold smiths, Slave Island with its Sri Murugan Hindu Temple, Colombo Town hall and Viharamahadevi Park. Visit Colombo 07 also known as the Cinnamon gardens where the affluent of Colombo society reside. Drive past the independence square, BMICH the International conference hall. Visit ODEL the shopping paradise for good bargains on renowned labels.

Overnight stay at selected hotel.

 

DAY 14 | COLOMBO / AIPORT

Breakfast at hotel.

After breakfast transfer to airport for departure on time

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RAMAYANA TOUR USD 1,250.00 USD 0.00 0 Anytime 13 NIGHTS / 14 DAYS

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