Discover Sri Lanka for families
Rivers and Waves
As the Kelani River flows down from Adam’s Peak on its way to the Indian Ocean, it creates several opportunities for thrills on its rapids, waterfalls and tributaries. Depending on the level of adventure you and your family are ready for, you can either raft or kayak on the white water, both of which take you downstream through breathtaking scenery. You can whizz down natural waterslides, dip into plunge pools and follow the river as it weaves through rainforests.
For more water-based activities, Sri Lanka is one of the best places in the world to learn to surf. The beach breaks which smoothly roll onto the sandy bay are ideal for beginners, and instructors are on hand to help you hone your technique. You’ll be carving waves in no time.
Ideally located between Yala and Udawalawe, two of Sri Lanka’s best national parks for spotting wildlife, sits an eco-lodge with an inventive Naturalist’s Programme designed to capture younger visitors’ attention. You and your family will have the chance for some on-location learning about conservation, sustainable tourism practices and tracking wild animals. You’ll also experience a jeep safari, getting up close to elephants or even leopard. At this immersive eco resort you can also take part in cultural activities such as palmyrah leaf weaving, freshwater fishing and a village cycling tour.
Adventure and Tea Drinking
The lush green hills of Sri Lanka’s tea country are reason enough to visit with its encircling tea plantations dotted with sari-clad pickers; and working factories where you can learn the art of tea-making from leaf to cup. But now, we’ve discovered some new activities that will appeal to adventure-loving families. How does zip-lining past towering mountain ranges and scenic waterfalls sound?
Or for something more grounded, drive jungle dirt paths through tea plantations on an ATV tour, or keep your feet firmly on rocky escarpments as you abseil down cliffs. You’ll be grateful for a sit-down and a freshly brewed tea after a thrilling day in Ella’s scenic beauty.
Live with a Local
Sri Lanka is one of the friendliest nations on earth and rightly proud of their cultural heritage. For a privileged encounter, stay with a Sri Lankan family in their home. A homestay gives you a completely different experience to a hotel and will allow for interaction on both sides. Even just walking around a village with your host will mean an introduction to inhabitants and their customs, including learning the secret to mouth-watering Sri Lankan curries.
One of our favourite homestay’s is located near Kandy, and here you’ll visit the revered and holy incense-swirled Temple of the Tooth for prayers with your new family. You may even be invited to join cultural activities such as mask painting, which form a significant part of folk storytelling and devil dancing.