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Sri Lanka

20 expert recommended attractions

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Sigiriya Museum

Sri Lanka 88 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Ancient stone fortress considered by many to be the eighth wonder of the world.  — Atlas Obscura

rade routes are explained, showing Sigiriya's connections with the Gulf, China, India and the Roman empire. Among the artefacts, the large buxom stone deity stands out. — Lonely Planet

The Mount of Remembrance, originally a king's fortress, sits atop a 560-foot-high rock. Buses depart hourly from Dambulla. — Travel + Leisure

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Ceylon Tea Museum

Sri Lanka 86 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The Ceylon Tea Museum is located in an old tea factory in Hantane, on the outskirts of Kandy — Afar Magazine

Tea may not sound synonymous with travel but Tea Trails, a collection of former planters’ bungalows set among Sri Lanka’s lush estates infuses the classic brew with an unexpected new experience — Condé Nast Traveler

An essential stop on any Sri Lankan tea tour, this museum occupies the 1925-vintage Hantane Tea Factory, 4km south of Kandy on the Hantane road — Lonely Planet

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Wewurukannala Vihara

Sri Lanka 86 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

To gaze upon the visage of Sri Lanka's biggest Buddha, one must first pass through the Tunnel of Hell.  — Atlas Obscura

A 50m-high seated Buddha figure – the largest in Sri Lanka – is a highlight of this temple, which is often thronged with worshippers — Lonely Planet

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Royal Botanical Gardens

Sri Lanka 86 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Founded in the 16th century, the largest botanic garden in Sri Lanka is 2 1/2 miles from Kandy, the country's second-biggest city. — Travel + Leisure

These stunning gardens were once reserved exclusively for Kandyan royalty. Today, even commoners are allowed in to enjoy the most impressive and largest (60 hectares) botanic gardens in Sri Lanka. — Lonely Planet

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Gangaramaya (Vihara) Buddhist Temple

Sri Lanka 81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Gangaramaya is the focus of the Navam Perahera on the February poya (full-moon) day each year. This is the centre for the most extravagant Vesak celebrations in Colombo. — Lonely Planet

Elephants are part and parcel of the Sri Lanka identity and experience, and feature in processions held at a number of temples during the year. The Esala Perahera, held in July or August... — Afar Magazine

Why is there a vintage Rolls Royce in this Buddhist temple?   — Atlas Obscura

Founded in the late 19th century as an institute for training monks, it is full of Buddha statues—some of them massive—in various styles from Thai through Sri Lankan to Burmese. — Fodor's

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Temple of the Tooth

Sri Lanka 78 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This elaborate temple was built around one of the Buddha's teeth.  — Atlas Obscura

Erected in the 18th century to guard the Buddha's sacred tooth, the pink temple is open 24 hours; there are daily prayer sessions, and a museum open to devotees and tourists. — Travel + Leisure

The golden-roofed Temple of the Sacred Tooth houses Sri Lanka’s most important Buddhist relic – a tooth of the Buddha — Lonely Planet

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Wolvendaal Church

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The 1749 Wolvendaal Church is the most important Dutch building in Sri Lanka. — Lonely Planet

Serving as a reminder that Sri Lanka was once a colony of the Netherlands, this beautiful Dutch Reform Church—the oldest in Colombo—dates from around 1740. — Fodor's

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Colombo National Museum

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Antique furniture, Buddhist bronzes, and royal dress are all on display. There are live puppet shows on weekends in the first-floor Children's Museum. — Travel + Leisure

Also known as the Sri Lanka National Museum, this is the largest museum in the country. — Fodor's

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Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The Kelaniya Temple near Colombo makes a fine day trip from the city. — Afar Magazine

It’s believed Buddha visited the site of this temple on his third visit to Sri Lanka. — Lonely Planet

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Galle Fort

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The UNESCO-preserved fort, built by the Dutch in 1663 on Galle's southern isthmus, completely surrounds the city's Old Town. — Travel + Leisure

Ong oversees a daily menu of Asian favorites that draws deserved raves from across the island, particularly a kung pao chicken that elevates the take-out classic to haute cuisine. — Condé Nast Traveler

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Jaffna Fort

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Jaffna's fort has been fought over for centuries. Today you're free to explore its walls, admire its gateways and moats and view the city from its ramparts. — Lonely Planet

Galle fort and the city of Galle has a wonderful colonial past that differentiates this gorgeous city from the rest of the country of Sri Lanka. — Afar Magazine

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Polonnaruwa

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This Unesco World Heritage site is filled with amazing temples, one-of-a-kind landmarks and huge buddhas. — Afar Magazine

The ruins of Sri Lanka's medieval capital can be toured on foot or bicycle. Several buses make the trip from Kandy to Kaduruwela, the closest bus stop. — Travel + Leisure

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Polhena Beach

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The best beach in the area is a small sandy cove that's sheltered by a reef offshore — Lonely Planet

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Sri Dalada Museum

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The Sri Dalada Museum, which occupies the upper two floors of the Alut Maligawa contains a stunning array of gifts made to the Temple of the Tooth. — Lonely Planet

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Koggala Lake

Sri Lanka 75 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Next to the road, Koggala Lake is alive with birdlife and dotted with islands, one of which features a Buddhist temple that attracts many visitors on poya (full moon) days. — Lonely Planet

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Victoria Park of Nuwara Eliya

Sri Lanka 72 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This is one of the country's most attractive, and best-maintained, town parks — Lonely Planet

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Mihintale

Sri Lanka 72 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Today, a climb of almost 2,000 wide granite steps will bring you to the three peaks atop the 'mountain of Mahinda', which taken together, provide a 360˚ view of the countryside below. — Afar Magazine

A ceremonial staircase climbs past pools, monastery ruins and rock inscriptions to reach two large dagobas. — Lonely Planet

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Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

Sri Lanka 72 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The elephants are controlled by their mahouts, who ensure they feed at the right times and don’t endanger anyone. — Lonely Planet

The elephants' daily bath ritual is a popular tourist attraction. As much as I enjoyed watching them frolicking in the water, I was equally fascinated watching them heading down to the water. — Afar Magazine

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Japanese Peace Pagoda

Sri Lanka 72 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This pagoda, 4km west of town, is a graceful stupa with a twist or two, including a vaguely Roman-looking colonnade ringing its lower level. — Lonely Planet

This peaceful, round shrine in the middle of the Sri Lankan jungle acts as a beacon of peace.  — Atlas Obscura

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Udawalawe Nationalpark Elefant Trail

Sri Lanka

Huge herds of Asian elephants can be seen walking, bathing, and just chilling at this Sri Lankan park.   — Atlas Obscura

Located in south-central Sri Lanka, Udawalawe National Park is about 310 sq km (118 sq mi) in size and has a resident population of some 1000+ wild Asian elephants, which roam freely across the park — Afar Magazine

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  • Museums
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    2 parks, gardens and outdoor attractions

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