A beach break with a difference
Floating in the Indian Ocean, not far from the equator, Sri Lanka boasts all the tropical island credentials. The weather is fantastic, the countryside is cloaked in greenery, and the beaches are accessorised with swaying coconut palms. But look a bit closer, and you’ll see there’s more to this place than meets the eye.
The elephant in the room
Sri Lanka is known for its elephants, and the island offers plenty of chances to hang out with them. Head to Minneriya National Park and spot them in their natural habitat on a 4x4 safari, or make tracks for Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, where you can help out with feeding time and enjoy a spot of lunch while the gorgeous mammals frolic in the river below.
Tea plantations and temples
Sri Lanka’s famous tea plantations are nestled in the heart of hill country. Make the trek, and you’ll be rewarded with sensational views and a top-class cuppa. Elsewhere, you can pay a visit to one of the country’s impressive temples. The Temple of the Tooth, in Kandy, is said to house the tooth of Buddha. Fancy a challenge? Try hiking to the top of Sigiriya Rock Fortress. Its 600-foot summit plays host to an ancient palace.