The Cultural Triangle is a treasure trove of ruins, rocks and wildlife in Sri Lanka and over the years lake fishing has become a livelihood for many rural villagers within this space. Even though the Cultural Triangle is situated in the centre of the island and therefore not anywhere close to the ocean, the man-made water tanks in the Habarana/ Sigiriya area are teaming with small lake fishes.
Board a small wooden local catamaran and try your hand at fishing, using locally made fishing rods which are sometimes made from using branches of trees. The lake offers a panoramic view of the Sigirya Rock Fortress and Pidurangala, as you happily fish away.
There is nothing which brings people together in Sri Lanka more than 'Cricket'. After success on the global stage in the late 90's, the love and passion for cricket spread like wildfire all around Sri Lanka. Be it an alley, an abandoned garden or even a river bank, almost every Sri Lankan from their childhood can be seen engaged in this sport and is so creative to convert even the smallest of space into an imaginative cricket pitch.
You have the unique opportunity to join a group of young villagers for a game of Cricket. Equipment will be provided by our local experts, as well as a crash course on how to play, if you are new to the game. These games are highly competitive among locals so you can expect them to bring their 'A game' to you.
You will participate in a spiritual journey, as you discover the form of meditation which will be practiced in close proximity to the 'Kaludiya Pokuna'.
Just off the sacred grounds of Mihintale rock, we witness an example of ancient Sinhalese hydro engineering at the 'Kaludiya Pokuna' pond complex. 'Kalu-diya pokuna', literally translates to 'pond of black water'. It is said that the name evolved out of respect to the somber reflections of trees and boulders of the neighbouring forests and mountains, and is true to its description at most times of the day. Here, you will meet with a local monk who will introduce you to the basic form of meditation practiced by Buddhist Monks, and also guide you as you ingulge yourself in a session of meditation.
Visit a stunning lake in the area, for an exclusive morning/afternoon with a Sri Lankan Elephant, with an opportunity to feed & bathe one of these ‘gentle giants’ in their natural habitat.
The visit begins with a local boat ride in the magical lake and after spending time with the mighty animal, take a local tractor ride back to your vehicle.
Sri Lanka has long been renowned for its spices. Since ancient times, traders from all over the world who came to Sri Lanka brought their native cuisines to the island, resulting in a rich diversity of cooking styles and techniques. Additionally, some of the herbs & spices are also used for medicinal purposes in the indigenous medicinal method referred to as “Ayurveda”.
Saunter inside a private spice garden and learn about fragrant cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, mace and pepper, and many other favourites such as cocoa and vanilla. Your guide will explain the different spices and show how some of these spices are grown, processed and practically applied for cooking and medicinal purposes. After a tour of the garden, enjoy a delicious traditional rice and curry lunch, enriched with local spices. If you would like to, you also have an opportunity to take part in a hands-on cooking demonstration at the spice garden before lunch.
Saunter inside small lanes and back roads to discover the heritage of Kandy through its people, who carry on the traditions of the Kandyan Kingdom. From the keeper of a Buddhist temple, to a lady selling coconuts and several small mom and pop cottage industries. It may feel a bit like stepping back into a gentler time. We recreate the charm of Ceylon in the 1920s, an era where things moved at a slower pace.
Meet Mike Johnson, a resident of Kandy who will accompany you on a walking tour giving his own perspective on the streets he grew up in. The walk will end in a local pub for a chilled beer.
The Centre for Arts & Culture was established in the 18th century at ‘Walawwa’ (an ancient village chief's residence). The Walawwa, inspired by quintessential Dutch architecture houses an interesting panoply of ancient books, Buddhist manuscripts, photography, and traditional furniture and wall paintings.
Meet with the 'Professor', a French national who has been residing in Sri Lanka for over 40 years. He is the co-founder, who together with a Sri Lankan enthusiast in the arts, interestingly combined their interests and passion for collecting ancient Sri Lankan books, furniture and monuments. The Professor personally welcomes you to this establishment where he proudly takes you through the different sections of the house and helps you discover a piece of Sri Lankan history. Together with the Professor, enjoy a delicious Sri Lankan rice & curry lunch.
Sri Lanka boasts of a rich dance tradition and extraordinary style of drumming, one of the most exuberant in the world. Enjoy a private traditional Kandyan dancing and drumming performance, where the dances include the cobra dance, mask dance and the ‘Ginisila’ (showing power over fire). The dancers wear elaborate costumes including a headdress and a decorative beaded net corset. The Kandyan Dance is traditionally performed to percussion only; the most common drums are the 'Geta Beraya' and 'Yak Beraya.' The drummers have lyrics that are sung in tune with the movements of the dancer.
This experience is very engaging as our local dancing master will also teach you the basics of dancing and drumming after the performance and, if you are interested, you could also pose for some photographs clad in the traditional Kandyan Dancing attire.
If you are interested in martial arts history, this tour will enthral you immensely. Drive to a rural village, where you shall meet a guru who will introduce you to the ancient indigenous martial arts system known as 'Angampora' (Vishuddhi). This technique was used to protect Buddhism and the ancient kingdoms from foreign invasions. Witness high-level techniques of Angampora, in addition to demonstrations in: knife fights, gang fights, the art of swords, and other rarely seen skills.
This experience will open your eyes to a dimension and stories of martial arts yet unknown to the world.
Bid the rainforest goodbye and head to the beach town of Mirissa where the majestic Blue Whale, the largest mammal on earth, inhabits the Indian Ocean. Set out early on a private boat trip to see the Blue Whales in their natural environment jumping out of the ocean. A few weeks between February and March, is krill feeding time and this when the majestic animal puts up a spectacular show.
Along the way you shall also see sperm whales, pods of spinner dolphins, sea turtles, and a vast array of marine life.
Sri Lanka is a fantastic choice for a beach holiday and surfing the waves here is pure bliss.
There are some gorgeous spots for this activity and Trincomalee is one of them. Be welcomed by white sandy beaches, jump into the pristine blue waters and fight with waves to improve your talent with some thrilling surfing lessons.
If you're looking to catch a wave or two in Sri Lanka, head to Trincomalee and let the ocean take over you!
We had the good fortune this AM to have Yad as a guide, and to see a beautiful female Tiger along with many photo opportunities too. I will need some time to sort them, but will send you some of the best ones once sorted. Sandy was very helpful as well as Haji at the Taj. We know these are top notch people and it creates a small dilemma with the correct tips. ....
The Oberoi hotels and staff have been top notch. We now have a new favorite hotel and hope to see some of the others in the future! The drive to Ranthambore, while long and bumpy, was not to be missed. True India we had never known about. Wonderful people. Raj stopped at some great street markets so we could mingle a little. Raj has to be the best driver in all of India.
The trip has been fantastic, very educational, and a bit spoiling to us.
First of all, a big thank you to you and your team for setting up an awesome trip for us. The execution of the itinerary by your l team was great and it exceeded our expectations. Definitely wanted to give a shout out to our safari guide, and our driver, who went above and beyond to make sure we had a good time. I also appreciate your flexibility during the planning, as I know it was last moment. All in all a fantastic trip and I look forward to working with you again on a future trip. ....
Home now for 36 hours, I am still basking in the glow of the most amazing adventure that was our trip to India. And I have you to thank you for such an incredible experience.To say that you went "above and beyond" would be the world's biggest understatement. You met and exceeded our every need and desire, and that was no small task. Thank you, Balu. Your business acumen is now legend, but it is your heartfelt dedication to stellar and highly personalized service that I will remember always. ....
All my very, very best,
OMG! Still basking in the memories of such an amazing trip to India and Nepal. I want to see more tigers and experience more of India!!! Just amazing! Thank you again for everything!!! ....
We loved Nepal, but it has a lot of luxury travel catching up to do and they are still recovering from the earthquake ☹ It was sad to see so many buildings still in disrepair, but there is a lot of building going on. Being there during Diwali was so much fun and we got so many big smiles wearing our new Diwali outfits! It was great fun – thank you!!! In a nutshell:
Kathmandu: So interesting all the markets and heritage sights! Right out of national geographic – could not get enough! Again, loved turning stares into smiles and conversation.
Chitwan: Saw a one-horned rhino and 2-month old baby that was the highlight. We really liked the Taj and were treated with royal Taj hospitality! Highly recommend this property for sure! Here again we were upgraded to a villa!! Incredible! The food was also fantastic! Taj really has wonderful chefs! Our naturalist even picked a pomelo right from a tree for me (my favorite fruit) and gave it to the chef to create something for me! Dinner that night we had the most incredible pomelo salad – OMG!!! Can’t say enough about the food here!!
The drive to Pokhara was smooth and I would recommend it over flying from Chitwan so that was a good call. Flights gets changed a lot in Nepal so driving is the best option and only really took 3 hours since there was no traffic!
Staying at Tiger Mountain Lodge was wonderful. We liked being away from the city center too. Trekking is the activity here and so fabulous! One of the highlights of Nepal was taking a trek through the villages around the lodge for 5 hours with one of their great guides Hari! Loved every second!!!
Learned a lot about Nepal since this was my first visit. It is a shoppers paradise too. If one knows how to bargain it is a real deal!!!
We absolutely loved the entire experience!!!
I would like offer you our sincerest thanks for making this indeed a trip of a lifetime. Our initial feelings of apprehension quickly disappeared within a few hours of arrival in Delhi. On arrival we were met by Sandeep and the driver Altaf, who after many hours of driving together with us became very close to us. ....
We felt safe with knowing he was indeed looking after our safety first. Sandeep was always in touch and also efficiently made last minute changes for us when we decided to take a train. Your rep in Ranthambhore met us at the railway station at Sawi Madhopur, ensured we were safely on board and also contacted a friend who worked on the train to assist us and let us know when to get off in Bharatpur. The guides were knowledgeable and were always willing to work on our wishes and schedule. Needless to say we were very well looked after every step of the way. Kudos to your team!
I must also add that our choice of using the Oberoi Hotels was the best decision we made. Your influence in getting us the Virtuoso package was a real bonus and of great value and very much appreciated. We have traveled extensively in may areas of the world and have stayed at many First Class hotels but non compare to the level of service, the attention to detail, the quality of the food, the friendly staff, the beautiful design of the resorts and accommodations as with the Oberoi chain. We were personally met by the general manager at each and every property. Each property was like an oasis to come back to after a day of touring.
This combination of your staff and the Oberoi resorts made this an unforgettable journey to be remembered forever.
Thank you again and best wishes to all the staff that we came in contact with.
Thank you for all of your assistance organising and during our trip to India. It was definitely a trip we will always remember. Some of the experiences we had were completely unique and we are glad we chose Asia Luxe. ....
Rajesh, our driver was fantastic. He was always on time, polite and friendly. We couldn’t have asked for a better driver. He ensured all our belongings were always safe as well as keeping us safe on the crazy India roads.
Thank you Asia Luxe for helping me plan a beautiful holiday.
Thank you again and best regards,
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