Pre Trip Info

Sri Lanka has varied topography that produces a wide range of weather conditions. Being a small tropical island it can rain at any time of the year. However, a noteworthy feature of Sri Lanka’s climate is the small variation in the mean monthly temperatures throughout the year, that is, it’s pretty much always warm! Generally speaking, January to September inclusive is the best time to visit Sri Lanka. However it’s likely that you will see rain at some point during your trip, no matter when you visit. In March, April and May it’s likely that you’ll get afternoon thunderstorms, but it’s quite nice to experience a tropical country such as Sri Lanka when there is rain around. The weather is unpredictable in October and November and on the whole these are the wettest months of the year. However there are some parts of the country that are relatively dry at this time.

Sri Lanka is a very child-friendly country. People make a special effort to fuss and entertain children: when it comes to foreign children the effort is doubled. Hotels and guest houses often have family rooms. Children are well-catered for in restaurants. Baby food and nappies are available in supermarkets, though baby bottles are harder to find. Bring mosquito repellent and sunscreen. The main highlight for children is, inevitably, the beaches and all the delights that go with them. However, there are other attractions: A winding train journey into the hill country, the elephant orphanage in Pinnawela and the Dehiwela Zoo in Colombo. If you want your children to play safely while you eat or shop in Colombo, there are play areas in Odel, Urban Kitchen, and Cheers Pub, Cinnamon Grand.

Sri Lanka’s compact size and the accessibility of most major attractions means that even a week will allow you to visit a number of different areas. But to experience the island properly, a two-week stay is advisable.

We require you to take out travel insurance before your arrival in Sri Lanka. It’s wise to purchase travel insurance when booking your flights and confirming your trip with us.

It is recommended to seek the advice of a medical doctor around six weeks prior to your arrival in Sri Lanka. This will give you sufficient time to get any vaccinations that you deem necessary for your trip.

Sri Lanka is well served by many international airlines such as Emirates Airlines and Singapore Airlines. In addition, SriLankan Airlines will commence direct flights from Europe to Colombo.

You will need a visa to enter Sri Lanka. In addition, if you intend visiting Sri Lanka on a short visit, you will need to obtain an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) prior to arrival (35USD).

On Trip Info

Most of the larger stores and shops in Sri Lanka have fixed prices. Unlike India, there is not as much bargaining in the markets of Sri Lanka. Often the purchases you are looking to make in local shops and markets will be in the order of a couple dollars – try to keep this in mind when bargaining. What might be a few dollars for you makes a huge difference to a local making their living from a small stall holding or shop

In the low country, loose cotton skirts or trousers and tops, and a long-sleeved blouse for visiting temples, are ideal for women. Men should wear cotton trousers or shorts and a T-shirt, or even the local sarong. Take a sunhat and sandals, slippers or open shoes that are easy to slip on and off. Being a conservative society, especially in rural areas, very short skirts and short should be avoided. For hill country trips pack a light sweater, and if you intend to sample nature trails, bring a pair of walking shoes or trainers. If you are traveling with children, a sunhat, loose cotton shorts and tops, including long-sleeved tops to protect them from mosquito bites, will be needed.

We provide advice and guidelines on tipping in the documentation you receive prior to travelling.

Your mobile phone will work if you have global roaming activated; keep in mind the high data and call rates before using your phone extensively. Alternatively you can purchase a local sim card upon arrival in Sri Lanka. It is easy to purchase a local sim card at the airport (located in the arrivals area after customs and immigration), which will give you data and calls. It is easy to top this up during your trip too. Your driver will recommend a particular operator if you ask.

Food hygiene and preparation have improved markedly in Sri Lanka over the last 15 to 20 years. Your digestion might be slightly disrupted as you adjust to the different food – this is more to do with the different ingredients, the richness of the food and the spices/chilli than anything else. We’ve noticed the incidence of serious stomach upsets reduce over the years.

Sri Lanka employs a decimal system, with 100 cents equal to 1 Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR). The 15-year average exchange rate is LKR 150 per US dollar. ATMs are widespread in Sri Lanka so withdrawing rupees is the easiest way to obtain local currency. US dollars cash is widely exchanged. Pre-paid travel cards offer security and low fees and are also worth considering.