Top 5 Places to Visit in Sri Lanka With Family
Sri Lanka offers spiritual temples and pristine beaches – the ideal backdrop for family vacations! Let us help plan an adventure-packed journey full of fun, excitement, and memories that will stay with your family forever!
Be sure to pack all your summer wear for Ella or Kandy if visiting these destinations, including sunhats and water shoes.
Sigiriya Rock Fortress
History buffs looking for ancient palace and citadel ruins won’t want to miss Sigiriya, which has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and features iconic features like its Lion’s Paws and beautiful frescoes of Sigiriya maidens. Sigiriya also provides breathtaking views from its top, making climbing there worthwhile; just make sure that comfortable shoes and handrails are worn when climbing to reach it safely! Located in Sri Lanka’s North Province and approximately 182 kilometres away from Colombo city!
Sigiriya was constructed as a stronghold by an overly ambitious king over 1,500 years ago, and stands out as an impressive example of ancient urban planning. Its rocky spire reaches over 660 feet high, boasting frescoes, graffiti art, ornate gardens and water features that were so well polished they held reflections of its owner king’s face on their polished mirror walls!
Exploring the ruins, you’ll come across some of the oldest frescoes still intact after so long. Additionally, there may be ancient paintings or remnants on the rock fortress walls which once covered them in vibrant hues.
As soon as you’re finished exploring the ruins, be sure to visit the Sigiriya Museum for an in-depth understanding of their history. It offers visitors an unforgettable experience.
Sigiriya is an ideal destination during any visit to Sri Lanka, offering various accommodation options. Consider staying at Otunna Guest House which offers eco-friendly options or Il Frangipane which boasts spacious rooms and delicious meals.
Dambulla Cave Temples
Dambulla Cave Temple is an enchanting shrine featuring the world’s largest rock-cut Buddha statue and ancient frescoes. Situated in the central region of the island, it’s a popular tourist spot. Visitors who look closely will discover intricate details that only keen-eyed observers will catch; such as its 14-meter long reclining Buddha and other stunning images carved into its cave walls and ceiling.
Temple of Sri Lanka is famed for its ancient murals depicting scenes from Buddha’s life and Buddhist mythology. A visit here provides an ideal opportunity to learn about its rich cultural and religious history; ancient paintings still stand as testimony to Sri Lankan artistry and craftsmanship.
Dambulla Cave Temple is one of Sri Lanka’s most prominent religious sites, having been constructed during the first century BC by King Valagamba (also known as Vattagamani Abhaya), who sought refuge there during his exile from Anuradhapura kingdom and converted the caves into shrines with numerous paintings added over time by successive kings.
This cave temple complex, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, has been used as a pilgrimage site for more than 22 centuries. With five sanctuaries and 2100 square meters of paintings covering over 2100 square meters of space, Dambulla can be reached in about half an hour from central Dambulla, either walking or taking the bus route.
Yala National Park
Sri Lanka offers abundant wildlife, stunning natural beauty, and an exquisite cultural legacy, making it the ideal vacation spot for families. Enjoy spotting elephants and leopards while touring ancient temples. Savour its delicious cuisine as you roam palm-fringed beaches or explore soaring mountains covered with tea plantations to meet some of its warm people – the whole island will take your breath away!
Shoulder season at Yala National Park with children is ideal, as temperatures remain comfortable while crowds are less dense than during high season (July to October). You are more likely to encounter animals since morning activities increase their activity level – giving you better chances of sighting them!
If traveling with children, it’s wise to pack plenty of water and snacks as well as sun protection and insect repellent products.
At national parks across the country, safari experiences await visitors looking for an immersive safari adventure. Popular examples are Minneriya, Kaudulla and Hurulu Eco Parks which boast wildlife such as elephants, water buffalos, deer and wild boar. Yala National Park stands out among them all by housing an elusive Asian leopard!
To reach the park, two options exist for reaching it – either taking a train from Colombo or bus from other major cities. While train travel provides stunning panoramic views of Sri Lanka’s lush countryside and vibrant culture, bus rides tend to be more economical; however they’re usually also more crowded and require sharing cramped coaches with strangers.
Kandy Cultural Dance Show
Sri Lanka provides children with endless entertainment and amazing wildlife encounters. From viewing elephants in their natural environment to discovering ancient temples and making new friends – Sri Lanka boasts everything! Plus it boasts some of the kindest, warm-hearted people you’ll ever meet!
An ecotourism adventure to Sri Lanka is a must for nature lovers and culture vultures alike, from wildlife enthusiasts to culture vultures. Watch Asian elephants roam Minneriya National Park before hiking up ancient rock fortress Sigiriya with its 200 meter lion paws offering truly jaw-dropping views or visit Dambulla cave temples where prehistoric Sri Lankans once resided and ancient statues of Buddha can be seen displayed.
Temple of the Sacred Tooth in Kandy is another must-see, where you can witness exquisite temple architecture and monk-led rituals. Additionally, Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens offer an incredible variety of plants, trees and orchids for exploration.
If you want a true taste of Sri Lankan culture, nothing beats a cultural dance show. These captivating performances combine magnificent costumes, dance moves and music into captivating performances that exude solemnity, likening them to Sinhalese wedding ceremonies but often with more vibrant elements that wouldn’t be allowed there.
Participating in Sri Lanka’s rich cultural heritage can be a great way to bond with your kids while exposing them to its unique traditions. When visiting religious sites or learning basic Sinhalese or Tamil words and phrases can go a long way; simple gestures like taking off shoes before entering someone’s house or covering up appropriately when attending religious worship will go a long way towards helping your experience be memorable and enriching.
Kandy Viewpoint offers beautiful views of Kandy and its surroundings, featuring stunning waterfalls. Plus, this scenic overlook is home to various plants and animals such as an endemic hanging parrot and brown-capped babbler; plus you’ll also have spectacular views of Kirigalpotta Lake and Totapola Mountains!
The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy, Sri Lanka is one of the must-visit attractions and should not be missed during any trip to Sri Lanka. This iconic temple reportedly holds one of Buddha’s teeth as its symbolism – located inside a royal palace complex with beautiful gardens and trees surrounding it, this landmark must be visited.
Kandyan dance shows are another must-do in Kandy. This captivating art form blends rhythm with movement to tell the tale of Sri Lanka’s cultural heritage, so be sure to book tickets early as tickets may sell out fast!
Kandy would not be complete without visiting the Royal Botanical Garden. Home to over 4000 species of plants, it’s an enchanting park offering gorgeous scenery for you to take in as you stroll or admire its magnificent lake. Plus, check out one of Kandy’s other popular attractions like Kandy lake!
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage offers visitors a rare chance to view wild Asian elephants up close, as it houses over 90 elephants ranging in age and species. Visitors can observe bathing, playing and feeding of fruits while watching these magnificent beasts bathe and play!