If you want to visit Sri Lanka, this 10 Day Sri Lanka itinerary is perfectly planned for you and ideal for families with kids!
The tropical island paradise of Sri Lanka is an incredible vacation destination for families! From majestic elephants to pristine beaches, this is an unforgettable destination that should not be missed.
After being there for 10 days, we feel like we only got a small glimpse of what Sri Lanka has to offer! With so many amazing attractions and activities to choose from, it can be daunting to create the perfect Sri Lankan itinerary. We’re excited to help you plan your trip with ease by suggesting the best spots to visit and offering tips to ensure your trip is a success.
The Perfect 10 Day Sri Lanka Itinerary With Kids
Here is a breakdown of our Sri Lanka itinerary with some subtle changes to plan the perfect family trip. I am sure there is so much more you could do and see in Sri Lanka but if you are looking for a less hectic trip with kids then this will be the perfect pace!
Day 1: Unawatuna Beach and Turtle Beach
Settle into your hotel and head out to Unawatuna beach! Sri Lanka has some of the most gorgeous beaches in the world. From the golden sandy beaches of the east coast to the secluded paradise beaches of the south coast – every beach in Sri Lanka has something special to offer. The beaches in Sri Lanka are perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and snorkeling, and there is a wide range of beach activities available for adventure seekers. Most of the popular beaches can be easily accessed and visited as day trips from major cities like Colombo.
Unawatuna is a stunning beach with fine white sand, crystal clear water, and plenty of activities to keep you busy. You can enjoy swimming, sunbathing, and snorkeling as well as biking and kayaking. You can even go on boat tours or dolphin watching excursions to explore the local marine life.
Want to really relax? Head to Angel Beach Club. We rented a day bed for about $20 and had some delicious food and drinks right by the pool. This is a great place to unwind for the afternoon after a crazy travel day or maybe towards the end of your trip to get ready for traveling.
A local secret, close to Unawatuna beaches is Turtle beach. Here you can feed green sea turtles.
@mrsblinks We are only on week two of our trip but it was our favorite so far!! #travelwithkids #srilanka #worldschooling ♬ Paper Birds (3 min) – Jordan Halpern Schwartz
Day 2: Turtle Conservatory & Galle Fort
Make sure you don’t miss a visit to the Koggala Sea Turtle Conservation Project. This Sea Turtle Conservation is a non-profit organization, doing their absolute best to create the ideal environment for injured turtles and also a place to breed and lay their eggs. They offer incentives to local volunteers to help protect and rescue turtles along this stretch of beaches. We learned so much about the different turtle species and what types of rehab they provide for specific injuries.
Here’s the Facebook page if you’re interested in supporting them:
After visiting with the turtles, another great stop is Galle city on the Southwest Coast of Sri Lanka. Galle is most known for Galle Fort, a popular tourist spot where you can explore the grounds. Galle Fort is a fortified old city founded by Portuguese colonists in the 16th century, then expanded by the Dutch. The Galle Lighthouse stands at the fort’s southeast tip and is such a great place to see the city.
@mrsblinks I will never be the same after that TukTuk ride 😳 #travelfamily #travelwithkids #srilanka ♬ Gentle and warm background piano(1262846) – Noru
While you are out sightseeing, head over and tour the Handunugoda Tea Estate where you can learn about the process of making tea from tea plantation growers who have worked at the estate for many years. Ask the experts all your questions about the production of tea, from the harvesting and production to the finished product. Our favorite part was visiting the Tea Museum at the end where we got to sample all the delicious teas they produce.
Day 3: Safari & Sunset Point
We didn’t do this, but we wish we had! Kalpitiya in Sri Lanka is an ideal destination for a safari adventure. It’s known for its stunning landscape and diverse wildlife! There are a variety of eco-tours available, from bird watching tours and highland safaris to whale and dolphin-watching tours. You can even take a boat tour to an uninhabited island and explore some of the hidden gems on the island. The best time to visit for a safari in Kalpitiya is between October and February, as the dry season gives you the best viewing conditions.
Sunset Point Sri Lanka is a popular tourist destination located in Kalpitiya. It is situated on a tiny island in the Indian Ocean, just off the north-western coast of Sri Lanka. This magnificent spot offers visitors breathtaking sunsets, as well as stunning views of the nearby coastline and islands. Activities available at Sunset Point, include snorkeling, scuba-diving, kayaking, and boat rides. Tourists can find a variety of dining options in the nearby area, as well as accommodation ranging from resorts to villas.
Day 4: Switch Hotels & Mirissa Beach
We didn’t switch hotels, but we wish we had! We spent most of our beach time at Unawatuna beach, but Mirissa’s unique bay has crystal clear waters that are great for swimming, fishing and surfing, and the beach is also a popular spot for boat rides out to view dolphin and whale species. Paragliding, paddle boarding, and kayaking are popular activities here too.
Day 5: Mirissa Beach & Secret Beach
Spend some more time at the beautiful Mirissa beach and then check out Secret beach! Secret Beach is a stunning white sand beach that is relatively unknown compared to some of the more popular beaches in the area. The beach is unspoiled and peaceful, with no crowds and no industry; it’s the ideal location to get away from it all and experience the tranquillity of the island. The beach also has plenty of opportunities for swimming and snorkeling, and the area is full of marine life and stunning coral reefs to explore.
Day 6: Yala National Park
Yala National Park is the country’s most visited and second-largest national park. It’s best known for its variety of wild animals. Your family will love seeing elephants, common leopards, sloth bears, spotted deer, sambar, monkeys, and even crocodiles. It’s also home to 215 bird species, 24 amphibian species, and 42 reptile species! If you and your kids are animals lovers, this is a very cool experience!
Day 7: Drive to Ella & Explore
Take the scenic route to Ella. If you have the budget to hire a private car, I highly recommend this as they are not too expensive and you will get to enjoy all the views and waterfalls. When you are in Ella, take time to tour the town, go on some hikes, visit the 9 Arch bridge and go on the train ride. I recommend you plan for a few days here so you have time to do everything.
Day 8: Hike 9 Arch Bridge + Adam’s Peak
9 Arch Bridge is a very popular tourist hiking destination in Sri Lanka! It’s a spectacular natural rock formation that resembles an enormous arch spanning over a large lake. The hike is considered one of the most beautiful scenic points in the region, featuring grand views of lush foliage and shimmering blue water.
After that, check out Adam’s Peak! Adam’s Peak is also known as Sri Pada or Sacred Footprint. It’s said in local tradition to be the spot where Adam first set foot on Earth after being cast out of paradise. The mountain is revered by Muslims, Buddhists, and Hindus alike, who all visit and climb it as a form of pilgrimage. There are numerous trails leading up to the summit and the peak is one of the country’s most sought-after tourist destinations!
Day 9: Train Ride to Kandy
The train ride to Ella to Kandy is a must-do! We took a chance to see if it was worth the hype and it definitely was! We bought our tickets the day before. You can choose between first, second, and third class. We went with second class because we heard it’s the best option. It does cost a little more, but it’s totally worth it! We each had our own seats with plenty of room.
It’s a super long train ride and can take up to 6 hours if you go the entire way, but the second class seats helped with our comfort level and we have a great time! There is so much to see! One minute you’re in the clouds and the next you’re in a tunnel. The train was nice and clean and we give it a 10/10!
@mrsblinks This train ride in Sri Lanka is just as amazing as everyone says it is and you should definitely bring your kids! #travelwithkids #srilanka #familytraveltips ♬ Paper Birds (3 min) – Jordan Halpern Schwartz
Day 10: Explore Kandy & the Tea Plantations
Kandy serves as an important cultural gateway to the country due to its iconic architecture and sacred sites. There’s so much to see in Kandy so make sure you take the time to explore. See the majestic Temple of the Tooth, historic Royal Palace, and breathtaking lakeside views of the scenic Kandy valley. This city offers plenty sights and experiences for those who take the time to explore.
Not far from Kandy you’ll find the tea plantations of Sri Lanka, one of the world’s leading tea producers. Take a tour through the lush, rolling hills of the plantations where you can explore the processing and curing of the world-famous Ceylon tea. Learn more about the farmers whose ancestors have been growing this famed brew for generations. Visit one of the many tea factories located throughout the region and take in the aroma of fragrant teas being processed and bottled.
Day 11: Drive to Colombo fly out
Rent a car or hire a driver to drive back to Colombo for your flight home.
Major Takeaways From Backpacking Through Sri Lanka
There are no shortage of incredible sites to see in Sri Lanka! From ancient cities to natural wonders, wildlife and beautiful beaches, your family will have the best time exploring this amazing country! I hope this 10-Day Sri Lanka itinerary will help you have an amazing trip!