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Cycling Holidays in Sri Lanka
Cycling Holidays in Sri Lanka

Cycling Holidays in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Cycling Holidays

Top 5 Places to Visit in Sri Lanka

Dambulla: Located in the central part of Sri Lanka, Dambulla is home to the iconic Dambulla Cave Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cave complex consists of five caves adorned with exquisite Buddhist murals and over 150 statues of the Buddha, and it is a significant pilgrimage site for Buddhists. The intricate cave paintings, depicting various scenes from the life of the Buddha, are a testament to the country’s rich heritage. Apart from the cultural treasures insidew the caves, you can also enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding countryside from the temple complex which is perched atop a huge rock.
Sigiriya: Another UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sigiriya is a must-visit site when visiting Sri Lanka. This ancient rock fortress, also known as the “Lion Rock,” stands majestically and gives you an insight into the country’s illustrious past. Climbing to the summit of Sigiriya rewards you with sensational views of the countryside and the remnants of the ancient palace complex, including well-preserved frescoes. The intricate water gardens at the base of the rock add to the allure of this historical site.
Kandy: Nestled among the pretty hills of the central highlands, Kandy is the cultural capital of Sri Lanka and home to the revered Temple of the Tooth Relic. This sacred temple houses a tooth relic believed to belong to the Buddha and is an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists. The annual Esala Perahera, a grand procession featuring ornately decorated elephants, traditional dancers and drummers, is a vibrant display of Sri Lankan culture and spirituality that attracts visitors from around the world. Apart from its religious significance, Kandy is also home to botanical gardens, serene lakes and tea plantations that showcase the natural beauty of the region.
Yala National Park: Located in the southeast of Sri Lanka, Yala National Park is a wildlife lover’s paradise and one of the best places in the country to spot diverse flora and fauna. Home to a variety of animals, including leopards, elephants, sloth bears and various bird species, Yala lets you experience the thrill of a safari among natural surroundings. The park’s rugged terrain, dotted with rocky outcrops and watering holes, is perfect for wildlife sightings.
Bundala National Park: Situated along the southern coast of Sri Lanka, Bundala National Park is a haven for birdwatchers and nature lovers. This coastal wetland sanctuary is renowned for its diverse bird species, including migratory waterfowl such as flamingos, pelicans and storks. Besides birdwatching, you can also observe other wildlife, such as crocodiles, elephants and various reptiles, in their natural habitat. The tranquil lagoons, marshes and sand dunes of Bundala National Park provide a stark contrast to the hustle and bustle of city life, where you can connect with nature and appreciate the beauty of Sri Lanka’s diverse ecosystem.

This was a good adventure through three countries, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. Starting with Thailand, the first day’s cycling had a mix of temples to see as well as cycling but I felt that day 2 and 3 we were just cycling to get out of Thailand with not much to see and was a bit boring. Cambodia was amazing with not just the amazing Angkor complex, but also the more sombre sights of Phnom Penh, S-21 and the Killing Fields, where our local guide’s personal stories really made you think. Vietnam was different again, with much better scenery for cycling and a lovely stay in the Mekong Delta. Saigon, you are left to explore on your own. I visited the War Remnants museum and the Independence Palace, which both were an interesting visit. The local teams who organised the cycling, were well organised with a special shout out to the Vietnam team, though their roads were the bumpiest.

Christopher Mather Cycle Indochina & Angkor

Good trip enjoyed by all

Robert Bowman Cycle the Baltics

Is Sri Lanka good for cycling?

Sri Lanka is home to diverse landscapes including verdant mountains, idyllic coastal roads and historical cultural sites, and is brimming with a variety of cycling routes for riders of all levels. The warm tropical climate ensures pleasant conditions throughout the year and the friendly locals, delicious cuisine and vibrant culture are sure to enhance your adventure. Although some roads may be challenging, Sri Lanka is a great destination for cyclists seeking adventure, captivating scenery and rich culture.

Where is best for cycling in Sri Lanka?

One of the best places in Sri Lanka to explore by bike is the Central Highlands, particularly around the town of Ella. The rolling hills, lush tea plantations and cascading waterfalls form a beautiful backdrop for a cycling adventure. Another great destination is the coastal town of Galle, where you can enjoy scenic routes along the coastline, passing through charming villages and historic sites. The Cultural Triangle region, including the ancient city of Sigiriya, is a great destination for immersing yourself in Sri Lanka’s rich cultural heritage.

FAQs on Cycling in Sri Lanka

What food do the locals eat in Sri Lanka?

In Sri Lanka, you can expect a vibrant and flavourful culinary experience that reflects the country’s rich cultural heritage. Some must-try dishes include rice and curry – a staple meal consisting of rice served with an array of curries such as fish, chicken and vegetable, accompanied by sambal (a spicy condiment). Another popular dish is roti, a type of flatbread served with various fillings like vegetable, egg or meat. Seafood lovers will enjoy fresh and flavourful dishes like fish ambul thiyal (sour fish curry) or prawn curry. For a unique culinary experience, try hoppers – bowl-shaped pancakes made from fermented rice flour, often served with egg or spicy sambal. Don’t miss out on trying kottu roti, a tasty and hearty street food made with chopped roti, vegetables and meat or seafood, all stir-fried together.

Which is the best national park in Sri Lanka?

Sri Lanka is home to many magnificent national parks, each with their own unique charms. Among them, Yala National Park stands out as one of the best in the country. Known for its diverse wildlife, including elephants, leopards and an array of birds, Yala boasts an unparalleled safari experience. As well as exploring the park’s picturesque landscapes, from dense forests to pristine beaches, you can also explore ancient ruins. With its rich biodiversity and incredible scenery, Yala National Park deserves its world-famous reputation.

Will I see tigers when cycling in Sri Lanka?

In the past, Sri Lanka was indeed home to a subspecies of tigers called the “Sri Lankan tiger” or the “Ceylon tiger” (Panthera tigris tigris). However, due to various factors such as habitat loss, hunting and conflicts with humans, this subspecies became extinct in the mid-20th century. The last recorded tiger in Sri Lanka was seen in the 1940s, marking the end of their presence on the island.

Despite the extinction of tigers in Sri Lanka, the country has taken significant steps towards wildlife conservation and protection. National parks and reserves have been established to safeguard the existing wildlife species and their habitats. Efforts are also being made to reintroduce species that have become locally extinct, although the reestablishment of tigers in Sri Lanka has not been attempted due to various challenges.

When is the best month for a cycling holiday in Sri Lanka?

The best month to visit Sri Lanka is generally considered to be between December and March due to the optimal weather conditions. This is the peak tourist season in the country, with plenty of sunshine, clear skies and minimal rainfall. The temperature during these months is comfortable, making it perfect for exploring the beautiful beaches, lush rainforests and ancient cultural sites that Sri Lanka has to offer.

How long is enough for a tour of Sri Lanka?

The ideal number of days needed for a cycling trip in Sri Lanka will vary depending on your interests and the areas you want to explore. If you are looking to cover the highlights of the country and cycle through some of its most scenic regions, a recommended duration would be around 14 days. This allows you to experience diverse terrain, from the lush tea plantations in the central highlands to the pristine beaches along the coast. Also, taking time to immerse yourself in the local culture and sample the delicious cuisine will enrich your experience.