Inspiring • Authentic • Tailor-Made

Inspiring • Authentic • Tailor-Made

Pettitts Travel UK 01892 515966

Cultural Triangle Holidays

There are few regions in Asia that compare to Sri Lanka’s extraordinary Cultural Triangle. This broad area, located in the dry centre of the island, boasts five UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a plethora of other important historical-religious complexes which are both fundamental to understanding Sri Lanka’s cultural heritage but also its relationship with the Buddhist faith. Due to the size of the region and the number of different sites, most visitors focus on what are considered the key places of interest basing themselves in one location. These nearly always include the richly painted cave temples of Dambulla, the monolithic 1500 year old royal fortress of Sigiriya, the island’s medieval capital Polonnaruwa and the ancient city of Anuradhapura, all of which are extraordinary sites and rightly considered cultural gems. For those wishing to see more and to incorporate a selection of the region’s lesser-known monasteries, cave temples and hermitages such as Aukana, Mihintale, Yapahuwa and Medirigiriya, Dimbulagala, Ritigala, Sasseruwa and the Vessagiriya Cave Monastery, it is generally recommended to divide time between the north and south of the Cultural Triangle. This, in turn, reduces travelling and also makes it easier to reach some of the more remote sites. Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle is also the setting for a wildlife reserve called Minneriya National Park. Best known for its large elephant population, Minneriya is located midway between Sigiriya and Polonnaruwa making it easy to incorporate a nature element into your visit.

Holiday Ideas for Cultural Triangle

A Journey through Ceylon

18 days from
£4895 to £5990 per person


Hidden Treasures of Sri Lanka

16 days from
£4790 to £5750 per person


Sri Lanka - A Tropical Jewel

14 days from
£2970 to £3560 per person


Sri Lanka: A Summer Family Adventure

14 days from
£3100 to £3720 per person


When to visit Cultural-Triangle

Best Times
Good Times

The Cultural Triangle is arguably Sri Lanka’s premier tourist destination and, as a result, draws visitors the year-round. Predominately located within what is known as the island’s dry zone, the region receives less rainfall than the majority of Sri Lanka and remains mostly arid between the months of January and October. Within this time period, however, it is generally considered that the very best time to visit the Cultural Triangle is in January, February and March when the risk of rain is at its lowest, temperatures are comfortable and humidity is lower. From the end of March the heat steadily increases, pushing 35°C on some days, with temperatures hitting their peak in May and June. If travelling at this time of year it is sensible to avoid the hottest part of the day when out sightseeing by factoring in earlier starts and late afternoon visits which we will be happy to advise you on. From mid-October the monsoon arrives. The rains slowly push north through the region and reach their peak in November and December – rainfall is intermittent but can be heavy and humidity also increases too. As with much of Sri Lanka, the island’s tropical climate means that short, sharp showers could happen at anytime of year although, for the most part, the region is dryer, sunnier and less humid that most other parts of the island.

What is a Tailor-Made Holiday?

We create a holiday tailored to your specific requirements, including:

  • When you go
  • Duration
  • Time spent in each place
  • How much you want to spend

We offer our experience and knowledge to help create your perfect, tailor-made itinerary

What to do in Cultural Triangle

The Cultural Triangle is home to some of Asia’s most important archaeological, religious and historic sites and, for most visitors, forms an integral part of their holiday. From delicately frescoed cave temples and serene reclining Buddhas to ancient stupas and imposing rock fortresses, Sri Lanka’s Cultural Triangle has a plethora of sites to explore and discover. The majority of travellers to the region visit four key sites – Dambulla, an extraordinary series of 2000 year old cave temples with lustrous paintings and religious sculpture, the rock fortress of Sigiriya, formerly a royal citadel boasting a beautiful fresco gallery halfway to the summit, UNESCO protected Polonnaruwa, once Sri Lanka’s medieval capital, and the sacred city of Anuradhapura which is centred on a sacred ‘Bo’ tree grown from a sapling of the original tree under which Buddha attained enlightenment. Further cultural highlights include the standing Aukana Buddha statue, the monastic shrines of Mihintale where the first Buddhist sermon was preached in Sri Lanka, the Yapahuwa rock fortress, the archaeological remains at Medirigiriya, the forest hermitage of Ritigala and the temples of Sasseruwa. For those interested in wildlife, a visit to Minneriya National Park, famous for its large elephant herds, can also be incorporated.

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01892 515 966

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