travel info
Q: Do I need a visa to visit spend a holiday in Sri Lanka?
A: Nationals from 80 countries who visit Sri Lanka for tourism purposes are exempted from visa requirements and they automatically receive a free 30-day visa on arrival.
   
Q: What if the country of my nationality is not listed among those 80 countries?
A: For nationals of other countries there is a varying fee for the 30-day visa.
   
Q: Is it possible to extend my stay in Sri Lanka?
A: The 30-day visa can be extended up to 90 days on payment of a fee. You will need to show a return or onward airline ticket out of Sri Lanka, along with proof of funds, such as travelers cheques or credit card, and provide a copy of the bio-data page of your passport and 02 photographs.

More information regarding Immigration could be found on: www.immigration.gov.lk
   
Q: What are the procedures to be followed to visit Sri Lanka if I am on a Business visa?
A: Those who visit Sri Lanka for purposes other than tourism should obtain the visa in advance from a Sri Lankan Consular Office.
   
Q: I hear that certain sites and monument are classified as UNESCO World Heritage sites?
A: Sri Lanka’s cultural depth is recognized by the UNESCO, which has declared six archaeological World Heritage Sites in the country. The sacred city of Anuradhapura, The ancient city of Polonnaruwa, The golden temple of Dambulla, The ancient city of Sigiriya, The sacred city of Kandy, The old town of Galle and its fortifications and the seventh UNESCO World Heritage Site in Sri Lanka is an ecological lung to the planet; The Sinharaja Forest Reserve.
   
Q: I am a nature lover and I want to observe the jungle and the wild animals in their natural habitat.
A: With 13% of Sri Lanka being conserved as national parks, reserves, sanctuaries and jungle corridors, the country possesses a high degree of biodiversity. Indeed the island (together with the Western Ghats of India) has been identified by Conservation International as one of 34 world biodiversity hot spots. A safari in one of the 14 national parks offers the chance to see some of Sri Lanka’s 91 mammals, but  the island is an ornithologist’s paradise, with over 233 resident species, (33 endemic) - but migratory species stretch the number to an astounding 482.
   
Q: What types of accommodations are available for our stay in Sri Lanka?
A: Whatever type you seek is surprisingly available  in Sri Lanka’s wide range of accommodation options. Five-star hotels, resorts and spas, boutique properties, guest houses, home stays, and all manner of other establishments can be found, especially along the western and southern coasts and Kandy and the hill country of Sri Lanka. It is also possible to rent houses. In a category of their own are government-run rest-houses, originally used by British colonists on their travels. As a result many are colonial buildings which are perfectly located in peaceful locations.
   
Q: What is the best time of year to visit the island?
A: Sri Lanka is a year round destination as it is fortunate to have two monsoons that occur in different halves of the island at different times. So if you wish to enjoy in the western and southern coastal resorts when the weather is best, come between December and April. However, even during the monsoon, sunny, warm days are common, although afternoon or evening showers can be expected.
   
Q: I've heard of something called Ayurveda. What is that
A: Sri Lanka has always been a place that refreshes not just the mind and body, but also the soul and spirit. And for thousands of years, the most popular method used to restore and rejuvenate tired bodies and weary souls has been Ayurveda – the oldest and most holistic medical system available in the world. Sri Lanka has been a centre of spiritual and physical healing for more than 2,000 years. Ayurvedic programmes consist of a wide range of herbal treatments and various types of baths and massages, together with cleansing and revitalization techniques such as yoga, meditation and special diets.
   
Q: Is it possible for me to combine a visit to Sri Lanka with the Maldives?
A: Yes, this is a popular option for many travelers, who want to experience the diverse settings and unique culture of Sri Lanka, but also would like to experience the world renowned beaches and diving of the Maldives. Flights between Colombo and Male are numerous and take only 1 hour. You can book an itinerary taking in both countries with us. You can save more in air fare if you will combine your jorney so it would not require you to go to maldives for another journey.
   
Q: Is Sri Lanka a suitable destination for children?
A: Parents will find Sri Lanka a very child-friendly country. People generally make a special effort to fuss and entertain children: when it comes to foreign children the effort is doubled. Children are well catered for in restaurants, and hotels and guest houses often have family rooms. Baby food and nappies are available in supermarkets across the island, though baby bottles are harder to find. It is also wise to bring child friendly mosquito repellent and sun cream since this is also very hard to come by even in the capital. Some of the highlights for children are the Dehiwala Zoo in Colombo, the numerous beaches, train journeys into the hill country, and the elephant orphanage in Pinnawela. If you want to allow your children to play safely while you eat or shop in Colombo, there are play areas in Odel, Urban Kitchen, and Cheers Pub, Cinnamon Grand. For dedicated play in the capital there are PGMartin Wonderworld facilities which offer all kinds of gaming.
   
Q: Is it possible to witness traditional festivals?
A: Every full moon day is a Buddhist public holiday, a poya. The most important is in May . Vesak Poya . a festival that marks the Buddha.s birth, enlightenment and death. Worth seeing are the illuminated pandals (bamboo frameworks), hung with pictures depicting events in the Buddha.s life. Sri Lanka.s most tourist-oriented traditional festival is the Kandy Esala Perahera, held in Kandy over 10 days in late July to early August. Perahera means .procession. and that.s exactly what occurs nightly - a magical passing-by of drummers, dancers, whip-crackers, acrobats and robed elephants. A caparisoned tusker carries the reason for the festival, the sacred tooth relic of the Buddha for the people to venerate.
   
Q: What is the ideal length of stay?
A: Sri Lanka's compact size and the accessibility of most major attractions means that even a week will allow you    to see a number of different areas. But to experience the island properly, a two-week stay is advisable.
   
Q: What aquatic sports are available?
A: Sea temperature around Sri Lanka remains at 27° C, which makes the island an ideal location for wind-surfing, water-skiing, jet-skiing, surfing, sailing, scuba-diving (including wreck-diving), snorkelling, speed-boating and banana-boating. In addition, there are plentiful freshwater opportunities in rivers and .tanks. (reservoirs), such as kayaking and canoeing, and most adrenaline-pumping of all, white-water rafting.
   
Q: Are there any other sports to enjoy?
A:  Well, there is rock-climbing, caving, mountain biking and paragliding for the daring. For those who enjoy a more relaxed sport there is golf: there are three diverse courses across the country . Colombo Golf Club, Nuwara Eliya Golf Club and Victoria Golf Club near Kandy. There are excellent opportunities for trekking. Nature trails of exceptional interest include the Sinharaja rainforest, the cloud-forests of Horton Plains, the Knuckles (mountain range), and Hakgala Strict Natural Reserve.
   
Q: What clothes are ideal to be worn?
A: In the intense heat of the low country, loose cotton skirts or trousers and tops, and a long sleeved blouse for visiting temples, are ideal for women. Men should wear cotton trousers or shorts and a T-shirt, or even the local sarong. Take a sunhat and sandals slippers or open shoes that are easy to slip on and off. Being a conservative society, especially in rural areas, very short skirts and shorts should be avoided.

If you are to spend time in the hill country pack a light sweater, and if you intend to sample a nature trail, bring along a sturdy pair of walking shoes or trainers. If you are travelling with children, a sunhat, loose cotton shorts and tops, including long-sleeved tops to protect them from mosquito bites, will be needed.
   
Q: What kind of food is available in Sri Lanka?
A: Rice is consumed with curries (eggplant, potato, green banana, chicken, fish) that range from delicately-spiced to near-dynamite. There are also hoppers (a pancake-like snack), string hoppers (steamed rice noodles) and pittu (flour and coconut mixture). Lamprais - rice and accompaniments baked in plantain leaves - is a legacy of the Dutch. Fresh fish, prawns, crab, squid and crayfish are readily available. Desserts include buffalo curd topped with palm-honey, and the caramel-like wattalapam. Tasty snacks known as short eats are excellent for trips
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Delectable fruit includes the popular mango, pineapple, banana and papaya, and also the lesser-known but distinctive examples such as sapodilla, mangosteen, rambuttan, woodapple, custard apple and beli.Colombo has an impressive range of restaurants specializing in international cuisine.
   
Q: What kind of souvenirs can i take back from Sri Lanka?
A: Souvenirs often combine traditional designs such as makara (a mythical animal, lion, swan, elephant and lotus) which are most evident in brasswork (boxes, trays, lanterns, vases) and silverware (ornately carved and filigree jewellery, tea-sets). In addition, ritual masks, lacquer ware, batik and handloom textiles, lace, and wood carvings are popular. More importantly, Sri Lanka has the widest variety of precious stones among the world's gem producing countries - blue sapphires, star sapphires, rubies, cat's eye, garnets, moonstones, aquamarines and topazes being just a dazzling handful that can be purchased with care.
 
 
         
   
Sri Lanka has much to offer the traveler to its shores. For the historically minded its old royal cities offer a glimpse into a 2,500 year old past.
 
         
 
 
  Sri Lanka offers many possibilities. Cosmopolitan Colombo provides a range of activities and places to visit from museums and temples to street markets.
 
 
  Pearl Island Tours has put considerable thought and effort into finding exactly the right places for our guests to stay.
 
 
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