North Sri Lanka holiday
Description of North Sri Lanka holiday
This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) holiday so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetWe work with selected local providers who are very committed to give guests the most authentic and original travel experience in Sri Lanka while leaving a lighter footprint on your trip. Our excursions maintain small-group sizes to limit the negative environmental impact in accordance to the carrying capacity of the visited site. In general, we are trying to keep the extra unneeded waste to a minimum in all our tours through our “bring it in, bring it out” policy for litter and rubbish such as food packaging and recycling wherever possible. In our UK and local offices we re-use or recycle the information booklets we provide to every client on arrival wherever possible. We also concentrate on providing information online via our website and electronically rather then producing a glossy brochure, hence reducing the use of paper and inks.
Our local partners are currently conducting audits with clients on how to make the journey more sustainable and include less plastic. There are plans to remove all single use plastic bottles from the vehicles. When traveling to Sri Lanka, you support a country that puts a lot of effort into sustainable tourism and good environmental management practices related to energy, water, waste water and solid management practices. For example, around 70 to 88% of Sri Lanka’s hotels use solar power and energy efficient lighting methods.
We select the most exclusive and responsible resorts for you, with a mix of sustainable groups and small places with local and personal character such as the Ibis in Wilpattu. Overlooking and bordering a local lake and nestled on a 2 ½ acre land surrounded and hidden by greenery, the Ibis is a four bed roomed exclusive and private ‘Villa’ styled property which lets you experience the absolute peace and serenity of rural Sri Lanka only to be broken by the twittering of over a hundred species of birds by day and at night. It gives you the impression that you could touch the moon and the stars making you feel that you are one with nature. All meals are made with local produce, sourced pre-dominantly from the surrounding home gardens, farms and lakes and cooked to traditional Sri Lankan village recipes.
With your stay with the Jetwing hotel group, you will contribute to a pioneer in Sustainable Tourism, committed to a harmonious relationship between community and environment for over 40 years. Its Sustainability Strategy is committed on key categories such as Energy & Carbon, Water & Waste, Biodiversity, Community & Culture, Family, Sourcing & Production. Initiatives range from the use of biomass fueled by sustainably harvested cinnamon wood, cocount shells or kitchen waste, the installation and use of photovoltaic parks and solar thermal panels, open architectural designs to maximise natural illumination and ventilation, pre-planned multiple switching circuits to reduce energy wastage from single circuit switches, the use of waste water systems, biogas digesters, and much more.
Another small sustainable place that you support with your stay is the Rosyth Estate. Blessed with excellent growing conditions, coconut, fruits, spices, herbs and other produce are grown on the estate and where ever possible, this produce is used as part of the menus. The water is heated with solar energy, and mainly comes from a well within the estate, whereas the gardens are maintained using water from a nearby spring & using harvested rainwater. Waste is composted or burnt and they ask guests, where possible to take back any plastic that they have brought with them. The Estate House is surrounded by a flourishing and bio-diverse ecosystem and through these green initiatives they hope to work in tandem with the environment in order to sustain and preserve it, so it remains unchanged for guests and locals alike.
- Culture & Buildings
Your entrance fees to visit Sigiriya, Polonnaruwa, Anuradhapura and Kandy with its Temple of Tooth will all contribute to the conservation and maintenance of those precious UNESCO listed World Heritage Sites:
- Sigiriya is one of the best preserved examples of ancient urban planning. Being sometimes called the 8th wonder of the world, this fortress-palace was built atop a towering rock in the 5th century and is one of the most dramatic, inspiring and beautiful historical locations in the world.
- Polonnaruwa was Sri Lanka’s medieval capital from 1073 until the late 1200s, and the ruins of the Kingdom of Polonnaruwa are incredibly well-preserved and include magnificant granite sculptures of Lord Buddha.
- Anuradhapura offers majestic remains of Sri Lanka’s first capital, originally built in the 4th century BC, the ruling place for over 100 Sri Lankan kings.
- The Temple of Toothes in Kandy is a Buddhist temple that houses the relic of the tooth of the Buddha. Since ancient times, the relic has played an important role in local politics because it is believed that whoever holds the relic holds the governance of the country. Kandy was the last capital of the Sri Lankan kings and is a World Heritage Site mainly due to the temple.
You will have a special and personalised learning journey with botany, the science of plant life, through a guided tour with our unique local botanist. Visiting the Peradeniya Botanical Garden will help the Division of National Botanic Gardens of the Department of Agriculture to grow and conserve more than 4000 species of plants, including orchids, spices, medicinal plants and palm trees.
You will be able to witness nature and animals in their natural protected habitats. You will visit the 1,317 km2 large Wilpattu National Park, which is famous for its unique "Willus" or natural lakes. Nearly 60 of those lakes and tanks are found spread throughout Wilpattu, and play an important role for resident and migratory water-birds. Wilpattu is the largest and one of the oldest National Parks in Sri Lanka, and is among the top national parks world-renowned for its leopard population. It is also home to other mammals like elephants, sloth bears, water buffalows, sambhur and spotted dear. 70% of the park is comprised of a dense forest system. Your visits at the National Park will contribute to the Wilderness & Wildlife Conservation Trust and the Department of Wildlife Conservation, who is the primary entity responsible for the maintenance of the national parks and wildlife reserves and the Sri Lankan Elephant Transit Home.
Other nature visits in this trip include a guided nature walk with a personal guide in Wilpattu, and visiting the Nebombo Lagoon, a large estuarine lagoon in Negombo which is fed by a number of small rivers and a canal and linked to the sea by a narrow channel to the north. The lagoon has extensive mangrove swamps and attracts a wide variety of water birds including cormorants, herons, egrets, gulls, terns and other shorebirds, as well as 140 species of fish. It is one of the most productive and sensitive ecosystems in Sri Lanka, so we give our best to protect it and leave a lighter imprint through our policies.
PeopleWe strive to help our clients connect with Sri Lanka and its local population in interesting and insightful ways. Our partners have a reputation for possessing an intimate, in-depth knowledge of Sri Lanka, with purposeful dedication towards enabling guests meaningful experiences. This has benefited not only clients and operators, providing more fulfilling trips, but is also positively impacting our host communities, providing immediate income and making their lives more sustainable and productive.
Our local partners have helped many hosts to develop their experiences from a product development and pricing perspective, elevating their experience and its value. They have developed experiences from scratch with many hosts and communities to provide jobs and income to local populations e.g. The Sri Lankan Garden (also incredibly sustainable operation) and most recently with the new East Coast Project, working with an Australian NGO to develop experiences on the East Coast of Sri Lanka, employing local staff and hosts in an area where there is a significant need. We choose our partners carefully and are constantly on the lookout for grassroots conservation projects and fair trade initiatives.
With your stay at the Ibis you will support a place that was built using only local craftsmen, materials and people from the village, Initially as a holiday getaway. The staff at The Ibis are extended family members who have been known to them for some time and they will take care of you like their own.
The ethos at the Rosyth Estate is to run a resort with minimal impact on the environment, whilst ensuring that the families living on the estate have an improved quality of life. It is only a few years ago since the area was connected to the grid for electricity and they are working to improve living and accommodation standards. A proportion of the service charge is used for local community initiatives.
When staying at Villa Hundira, a visit to the thimble Arts & Crafts workshop situated in the property is a must. In an effort to empower the women of nearby fishing villages, Indira, the proprietress of Villa Hundira launched the workshop that handcrafts a range of wall hangings, tapestries, cushions and stuffed toys that are flamboyant and distinct in style.
For many years our partners have worked with a small collection of schools where they have arranged for clients to help construct toilets, paint classrooms and have worked with charities such as The Foundation of Goodness and Child Action Lanka.