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Culinary Break in Sri Lanka

Discover the exotic flavours of this paradise island with a delightful Sri Lanka food tour. Famed for its spices, abundance of tropical fruit and vegetables; we offer you a truly unforgettable journey into its vibrant markets and flourishing fields. So, come, enjoy an experience unlike any other!

day Location/Route duration Overnight
Day 01 Arrival and transfer to hotel in Dambulla Two nights in Dambulla Value: The Paradise Resort & Spa
Signature: Jetwing Lake
Day 02 Dambulla Last night in Dambulla Value: The Paradise Resort & Spa
Signature: Jetwing Lake
Day 03 Dambulla to Kandy Two nights in Kandy Value: Oakray Regency
Signature: Cinnamon Citadel
Day 04 Kandy Last night in Kandy Value: Oakray Regency
Signature: Cinnamon Citadel
Day 05 colombo Kandy to Colombo One night in Colombo Value: OZO Colombo
Signature: Jetwing Colombo 07
Day 06 Departure
Kandy Esala Perahera "Procession"

The Kandy Esela Perahera, which is also known as The Festival of the Tooth is a unique religious and cultural event that takes place every year in July. The procession features many dancers, drummers and elephants, who parade through the streets paying homage to the sacred tooth relic of Lord Buddha which is housed in the Sri Dalada Maligawa, Kandy.

The Temple of the Tooth Relic

The Temple of the Tooth Relic, which is known as the Sri Dalada Maligawa is in the sacred city of Kandy. It houses the tooth relic of Lord Buddha and is an important shrine of Buddhist worship. The annual procession known as the Kandy Esala Perahera marks an important day in the Sri Lankan calendar.

Matale Spice Garden

Sri Lanka is famous for its colourful and exotic spices which add flavour to the local food. From cinnamon, pepper to turmeric and lemongrass, walk through the aromatic spice garden before feasting on scrumptious meals served at the restaurant. Customers who shop at the store receive a complimentary 10-minute massage.

Dambulla Cave Temple

The Dambulla Cave Temple is known to be the best-preserved and largest cave temple complex that is found in Sri Lanka. With over 80 documented caves spread across the vicinity, the Dambulla Cave Temple has rightfully earned its name as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 153 statues of Lord Buddha can be found in this temple which is also known as the Golden Temple of Dambulla.

Wander Through History in Kandy

Visit the Suriyakantha Centre for Art and Culture, and delve deep into the fascinating annals of European and Sri Lankan history. Housed in the Naranwala Walawwa, an 18th century Dutch-style colonial manor house, the centre represents a unique effort between a Frenchman and Sri Lankan, to showcase talent from eras past.

Explore the vast repository of local and European works over the course of two to three hours and understand the richness of Kandyan culture. Observe the various manuscripts, furniture, handicrafts, artworks and photographs on display. Located near the town of Kandy in Sri Lanka’s Central Province, Suriyakantha is open to visits between 08:00am and 04:00pm, throughout the year.

Architectural Tour of Kandy

Discover the rich architectural heritage of Kandy, the last Sri Lankan Kingdom to fall to the invading British. Today, it is one of the island’s major cities and home to an array of renowned attractions such as the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, the Royal Palace and National Museum.

Begin your tour at the lively town centre, and observe the diverse mix of neo-colonial and colonial-style buildings. Enjoy quality time with celebrated architect Ruchira Wickremasinghe, a recipient of the Geoffrey Bawa Travel Award, as she walks you through the intricacies of Kandy’s architectural landscape. The 2.5 hour tour can begin at any time; however, the late hours of the afternoon are ideal.

Spice Identification

Since ancient times, Sri Lanka has been a key player in the world’s spice markets. Even today, Sri Lanka is the sole provider of the globally sought-after “true cinnamon” or Ceylon Cinnamon. Embark on a culinary adventure in Matale and challenge your senses. Learn to recognise a variety of famed spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, clove and cinchona by taste, smell and touch.

Enjoy a range of authentic local dishes prepared just for you using the spices that you have experienced. Then, separate into teams and put your newly learned skills to the test by guessing which spices are present in each dish. This activity is available in the mornings and afternoons and lasts around three hours.

Kandy Four Temple Loop Tour

Spend half a day exploring four of Kandy’s famed medieval temples. Join your personal archaeologist on an informative, 3.5 hour coach tour of the Degaldoruwa, Embekka, Lankatilaka and Gadaladeniya Buddhist temples. Feast your eyes on the magnificent Kandyan murals on the ceiling of Degaldoruwa Temple. Witness the wonderful fusion of Buddhist and Hindu culture at Gadaladeniya Temple.

Take in the exquisite craftsmanship of the woodwork at Embekka Temple. Observe the traditional Sinhalese design of the Lankatilaka Temple, and discover the inscriptions carved into the rocks. Setting off in the morning is ideal, as the tour involves approximately 1.5 hours of travel to / from your hotel.

Day 01

A warm welcome to Sri Lanka! Your chauffeur from Holidays by Design will be present at the arrivals hall to greet and assist you to your vehicle.
You could change your currency before departing the airport as this may come handy during your holiday.
We will then head to Dambulla (three hours). Settle in, rest and relax from your journey.

Day 02

This morning you will visit the chena lands, a popular cultivation method in the dry zone of the country.  You will also visit a local farm of tropical vegetables, cereals, grains, yams and corn.

We recommend visiting the Hiriwaduna village for a full days experience followed by a culinary demonstration by the locals. You will also be preparing Kokis – a golden brown star-shaped crunchy snack, commonly served during special occasions.

This evening you may opt to visit the Dambulla Cave Temple, or another option would be to visit one of the busiest markets in the country in Dambulla, crowded with wholesalers, retailers and trucks unloading piles of fresh vegetables for distribution around the country. This is an ideal place to hand pick an array of fresh fruit and vegetables.

We recommend heading to the Traditional Food Sales Centre run by the local government this evening. Try a portion of pittu - funnel cakes combining flour and shredded coconut, steamed and served with sweet rich coconut curry and chilli paste.

Day 03

This morning after breakfast we will be making our way to Kandy (3.5 hours).

On this day we will make a stop at Matale, the renowned region for spices.Your visit to the spice garden will not only introduce you to the different spices available in Sri Lanka but also to the different usages of the spices. Spices aren’t just used in food but also play a vital role in cosmetics and Ayurveda medicine.

You will be served lunch at the end of the experience. Inhale the fragrance of cumin, cinnamon and curry leaves with aromatic fenugreek in your pumpkin curry.Be cautious with the dry chilli sambol – as it can be incredibly hot!

This evening you will be introduced to the Dambulla Heritage Rest house for a mouth-watering meal. We recommend the pot roasted chicken, or the lake fish served here.

Day 04

After breakfast, we will head to Kandy city to visit its highlights. You may wish to try out some of the sweets from Mango Mango. Their date cake is not be missed.
Stroll through the city this afternoon. We recommend lunch at the Royal bar and hotel. Your lunch will be prepared with the seasonal pick of vegetables available on the day and served at the chieftain’s mansion, which dates back to the early 19th century.

This evening we will head to Helga’s Folly for an intriguing and different experience. Enjoy the cocktails and finger food at sunset with your hostess – a colourful character if you are fortunate to meet with her.
This evening you will be introduced to a popular street food & hangover meal prepared to the rhythmic beat often heard in small local cafes. “Kottu Roti” a local favourite is prepared with a base of wafer-thin sheets of dough cooked and sliced skilfully on a griddle with caramelized vegetables and your favourite meat / seafood and egg.

Day 05

After breakfast, proceed to Colombo (3.5 hours). En route you may wish to visit the Pinnawala Elephant orphanage if you are an animal lover.

This evening we will set off to the bustling streets of Colombo with a three-course street food dinner served at the end of the tour at the Galle Face Green.

Local attractions: the Navam Perahera (1st Mar 2018 – tickets should be pre-booked) / Street food festival – Hotel Fairway (first weekend of every month) / Nelum Pokuna Art Street / Shopping at Barefoot Gallery & Jazz Brunch every Sunday / Seafood dinner at the Ministry of Crab /Street Food at Galle Face Green / Authentic Sri Lankan meal in the beautiful setting of ‘Thunapaha on the Edge’- Waters Edge Hotel / Japanese cuisine at Nihonbashi or at the Dutch Hospital

Day 06

We will take you to the airport, to arrive two-three hours before your flight home.

Add on

  • A list of a few activities you may want to add on to your experience
  • In and around Negombo & Colombo – lagoon fishing / tea tasting in Colombo
  • In and around Kandy – Visit a spice garden / Peradeniya Botanical Gardens / Hike into Udawatte Kelle Sanctuary/ Temple loop experience / Garrison cemetery / Knuckles Mountain trek.

What to Pack!

  • Socks – as footwear must be removed when visiting places of worship. You could be walking on heated paving, gravel or cement. Also, shoulders and knees should be covered.
  • Footwear – choose comfy shoes - sneakers, sandals or similar.
  • Shawl – to cover your shoulders or dress up!
  • A sweater or light jacket if you plan to visit the Hill Country.
  • Sunscreen, sun hat, sunglasses, travel umbrella or lightweight raincoat.


  • All drive times are approximate and subject to road conditions
  • Alcohol is not served on “poya days” (full moon) and other days prohibited by the Government.
  • The standard check-in time is 14:00 at hotels.
  • The standard check-out time is 11:00 from hotels.
  • Gratuity: tour guides & drivers are tipped at the end of the tour.
  • Online visa application link:
  • Purposeful Tourism: Your support: one USD from every booking supports a cause.
  • Holidays by Design terms and conditions (
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Celebrate the rich flavours of Sri Lanka!