A tour of Sri Lanka offers a mix of adventures including the best of beaches, wildlife, sports, hiking, history, and culture. Make this island nation your ultimate holiday destination, abundant with activities for both adults and children. As we all learn to adapt to a new normal and accept Covid-19 to be a part of our lives for the next few years at the very least, it is time to plan that holiday and give your kids what they truly deserve.

1. Scenic and adventurous train rides

Be it from Kandy to Ella or Colombo to Galle, Sri Lanka has some of the most scenic train journeys! The hill country ride boasts views of lush tea plantations, beautiful mountains, cascading waterfalls, and plenty of greenery. Trains from Kandy to Ella are best booked in advance; observation deck for best views. Trains along the southern coast are also interesting for sea views and coconut trees on one side and road/village views on the other.

2. Personal encounter with wild elephants

The Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage is where kids can watch elephants while they are bathing and being fed. Kids are always keen on visiting this attraction. This is because they are allowed to touch the elephants and feed them if arrival is at regular mealtimes.
Udawalawe National Park and Minneriya National Park are known for their abundant elephant population. Minneriya is world renowned for the largest elephant gathering in all of Asia. A jeep safari at these national parks allows you and your family to experience a personal encounter with wild elephants. There are also other animals of the wild, including the endemic monkeys, sloth bear, water buffalo, and sometimes the leopard.

3. Child-friendly beaches in a tour of Sri Lanka

A tour of Sri Lanka offers the best of beaches for a family holiday! Whether you are in the south coast, east, coast west coast or north coast, simply head over to the closest beach and you are bound to have a fun-filled day building sandcastles and dipping in the water with your kids. On the south coast (Bentota) and west coast (Negombo), you have water sports such as jet skiing and banana boat rides. Locations such as Arugam Bay (east coast) are the best for surfing. Passikudah, Trincomalee (east coast) and Jaffna (north coast) are perfectly calm, swim safe beaches with white sands. And Kalpitiya in the west is known for kite surfing and its blue whale sightings.

4. Activities in Colombo

A couple of nights in Colombo is advisable for families travelling with kids. Shopping should be on the to-do list. Have a stroll around the supermarkets for interesting local chocolates, biscuits, and candy. Also, several retail clothing stores have an exciting range of kids clothing. In addition to that, the Dehiwala Zoo, the Airforce Museum (Ratmalana), the National Museum (Townhall), Port City, and Lotus Tower are a few places that children will enjoy visiting in Colombo.

5. Hiking adventures for the active ones

While Sri Lanka’s hill country boasts of thrilling nature treks, particularly in the Knuckles Mountain Ranges, we also have a few options that are do-able by kids when holidaying in Sri Lanka.

  • One is the 4.5km hike of Little Adam’s Peak in Ella, which will take about an hour or two, depending on how active your kids are! Don’t forget to pack snacks and water to keep them motivated!
  • The Horton Plains National Park trail to World’s End viewing point is an easy hiking activity in Sri Lanka. It rewards the young and old with a stunning 870-meter drop view that seems to stretch out to eternity. The trail is about 9kms both ways. It takes you through gorgeous open fields, beautiful waterfalls, a diverse range of flora and some unique birds.
  • In the cultural triangle of Sri Lanka, we have the Lion’s Rock – Sigiriya, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and undoubtedly one of the most popular tourist attractions in Sri Lanka. The climb up and down with kids is about two hours both ways. At the summit you can show them the remnants of a palace built by an ancient King of Sri Lanka.

6. Interacting with the friendly locals on a tour of Sri Lanka

Sri Lankans are well known for their welcoming nature and warm hospitality. Interacting with the village folk anywhere across the country can be fun and entertaining for curious adults and children. For an interesting conversation, you could ask them anything about a tour of Sri Lanka, about their lives or even try to learn a few words of the Sinhalese language!

7. Enjoying luxurious family-friendly accommodation

World renowned international hotel chains such as Riu, Shangri La, Marriott and Movenpick are now in Sri Lanka. They aim to promote family-friendly accommodation that includes well-designed swimming pools, carefully selected kids menus, children’s play area, and a variety of indoor and outdoor gaming options. Whether you want to visit Nuwara Eliya and the hills, or you want to do whale watching in the south coast, kite surfing in Kalpitiya, or simply observe sea turtles in Koggala, the tourism industry in Sri Lanka offers luxurious family-friendly accommodation options across the island.