Depart your Kandy hotel and travel to Sigiriya by private, air-conditioned vehicle.
Learn about this UNESCO-listed, 590-foot (180-meter) rock from your driver-guide on route, and after roughly two hours, head inside (own expense) and climb to the summit.
Enter the stone lion paws gateway and see the stunning rock-face frescoes of maidens. At the top, admire the bird’s-eye views and explore the tiered gardens and frescoes of the 5th-century palace of King Kasyapa.
Next, visit a nearby village for a fascinating tour (additional cost). Enjoy a 15-minute ox cart ride and 15-minute reservoir cruise on a fishing catamaran, and visit a village house for a cooking demonstration. Then, prep a dish for yourself before enjoying an authentic Sri Lankan buffet of staples like curries, rice, river fish, poppadum, and fruit or curd with treacle for dessert.
Next, travel to Minneriya National Park, a forest and wetland reserve centered on a 3rd-century reservoir and famous for its elephants. Go inside (own expense) and enjoy a 3-hour safari to look for elephants as well as species such as leopard and sloth. Watch, too, for deer, saltwater crocodiles, monkeys, and the local and migratory birdlife.
Lastly, finish with a hotel drop-off in Kandy.