Australian Motorcyclist Magazine “Readers Ride” Tour
Saturday - Transfer from Colombo Airport to hotel at Wadduwa or Kalutara. Introduced to bikes in the afternoon with a short ride to get used to the traffic in Sri Lanka.
Sunday - Wadduwa to Hambantota: Early morning departure from Wadduwa/Kalutara with breakfast on the way. Stop at Udawalawa Reservoir to see “Rambo” the elephant. Then down to the south-coast at Nonagama and along coastal road to the hotel in Hambantota.
Monday - Hambantota to Haputale: Relaxed morning start after breakfast. Visit old stupa at Tissamaharama. Then ride through a Jungle Corridor towards Wellawaya. Visit the ancient rock statues at Buduruwagala. Ride to Beragala passing the Diyaluma Waterfall. Climb into the hills to the hotel in Haputate.
Tuesday - Rest day. Anyone interested can join for a ride on tea estate roads to Lipton’s Seat, Adisham Manor House, the ancient Dhowa Rock Temple and Ravana Ella Waterfall.
Wednesday - Haputale to Hatton or Castlereagh Reservoir: Travel through Sri Lanka’s unique Horton Plains National Park. Then through the tea estate towns of Nanu Oya, Radella and Lindula with stops to view St Clair and Devon Waterfalls.
Thursday - Hatton to Nuwara Eliya: Ride through tea estates from Dickoya through Fordyce Gap to Agarapatana and to Talawakele. See huge mountains and massifs as well as Sheen Waterfall along the Punduloya to Ramboda Road. Climb up the Ramboda “Hairpin” Bends to the colonial hill station of Nuwara Eliya.
Friday – Nuwara Eliya to Kandy: Ride up Sri Lanka’s famous hill-climb race road at Mahagastota. Then through Hali-Ela, Passara, Bibile and to Mahiyangana. Ride up Sri Lanka’s famous “Mahiyangana 18 Hairpin Bends” to Kandy.
Saturday – Rest day in Kandy. Explore the “Temple of the Tooth,” Tea Museum, Trinity College Chapel, Peradeniya Botanical Gardens and other places in Kandy. Definitely drop in to the Royal Hotel for a drink in an old colonial pub that has been beautifully refurbished. Anyone wanting a day ride can travel to Meemure through Corbet’s Gap in the beautiful Knuckles Range.
Sunday – Kandy to Giritale: Early morning departure with breakfast on the way. Ride through the specyacular Knuckles Range to Giritale. Jeep safari in the afternoon to Minneriya National Park to see herds of elephants coming to graze on the shores and drink water at Minneriya Tank (Lake).
Monday - Giritale to Nilaveli: Early morning vehicle ride to Polonnaruwa to visit the ruins of the magnificent ancient city. Return to Giritale and then ride along the coastal plains to the seaside resort of Passikudah for lunch. Travel along the east coast road to Trincomalee and then to the hotel at Nilaveli.
Tuesday – Nilaveli to Sigiriya: Late start from Nilaveli, if anyone is interested in visiting Pigeon Island National Park by boat. Visit the old colonial Fort Fredrick, the Hindu Koneswaram Temple and “Lovers Leap.” Travel to Habarana and then to Dambulla to visit the old Rock Temple and back to Sigiriya. Evening drive to Sigiriya to view the magnificent rock in the setting sun.
Thursday – Partial rest day. Climb Sri Lanka’s most famous rock at the World Heritage ancient site of Sigiriya early in the morning. Leave late in the morning to Anuradhapura past Habarana and the very old Buddhist hermitage rock of Ritigala. This is a short ride as climbing the rock could be exhausting. Go on a tour of the historical ruined city of Anuradhapura in the late afternoon.
Thursday - Rest day in Anuradhapura. Visit the renowned Buddhist site of Mihintale in the morning. For those who want more riding a day-trip to Mannar to visit the sacred Christian Church of Madhu is an option. This will pass “Giant’s Tank” which has no known construction date and which even British engineers couldn’t understand.
Friday – Anuradhapura to Negombo: Leave late and travel to Puttalam and then up the peninsula to Kalpitiya. Lunch at Kalpitiya and then head south along the coastal road to Negombo.
Saturday – Negombo to Colombo: Day of rest and vehicle transfer to Colombo to explore the capital city of Sri Lanka. Evening transfer to Colombo Airport for flights back home.