Sri Lanka (known as Ceylon before 1972) is an island nation in South Asia, located about 31 kilometres (19.3 mi) off the southern coast of India. It is home to around twenty million people. Because of its location in the path of major sea routes, Sri Lanka is a strategic naval link between West Asia and South East Asia, and has been a center of Buddhist religion and culture from ancient times. Today, the country is a multi-religious and multi-ethnic nation. The Sinhalese are the majority, with Tamils, concentrated in the north and east of the island, forming the largest ethnic minority. Famous for the production and export of tea, coffee, coconuts and rubber, Sri Lanka boasts a progressive and modern industrial economy and the highest per capita income in South Asia. The natural beauty of Sri Lanka’s tropical forests, beaches and landscape, as well as its rich cultural heritage, make it a world famous tourist destination. This location has been recognized and published by the “New York Times” as one of the “52 Places to Go in 2015.”
PASSPORT REQUIREMENTS FOR SRI LANKA TOURS
American and Canadian citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond the intended return date in order to enter and depart the country. Please ensure that the name on your passport matches all travel documents we have issued. If this is not the case, please contact us immediately.
Please make a photocopy of your passport’s identification page and keep it separate from your original. It’s also a good idea to leave a digital copy with someone at home. This may speed up the replacement process should you lose your passport.
VISA REQUIREMENTS FOR SRI LANKA TOURS
Both Canadian and American citizens need a visa to enter Sri Lanka. Visas can be obtained online for a fee of $30. They are valid for 3 months starting from the day of approval and may be used to enter the country twice during the 3 month duration. Visitors wishing to stay longer than 30 days in Sri Lanka may apply for an extension. This may be extended for up to 90 days.
For more visa information please visit:
INSURANCE RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SRI LANKA TOURS
Cancelation and Medical Insurance is highly recommended as it can safeguard against in-country medical emergencies, lost or delayed baggage and emergency cancelation or interruption of your trip. Please ensure your policy will provide you with upfront medical coverage so that you are not responsible for a hefty doctor’s bill while away. Insurance can be purchased through us.
VACCINATION REQUIREMENTS FOR SRI LANKA TOURS
No vaccinations are required to enter Sri Lanka, although proof of Yellow Fever vaccination is required if you have traveled through an infected area. It is advised to consult a travel doctor 8 weeks before departure in regards to the recommended vaccinations below. Some vaccines require more than one dose or a major length of time to be effective.
DiphtheriaHepatitis A & BMalariaRabiesTetanusTyphoid.
For all vaccinations and health requirements, you can also refer to the recommendations from:
World Health Organization (WHO): http://www.who.int and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) http://wwwnc.cdc.gov.
MEDICATION REQUIREMENTS FOR SRI LANKA TOURS
If there are any medical items essential to your health, such as prescription drugs or corrective eye wear, bring duplicates and divide them between your checked bags and hand luggage. It is also advised to take iodine tablets to purify water if bottled water is not available. It is also strongly advised to take over-the-counter diarrhea medication. While non-prescription drugs such as aspirin are generally available, it is difficult to replace prescription items.
Other recommended Items:
WEATHER, SEASONS AND CLIMATE IN SRI LANKA
Sri Lanka is home to a tropical climate with distinct dry and wet seasons. From May to August the southwestern half receives rains from the Yala monsoon, with the dry season lasting here from December to March. The Maha monsoon brings rain the northeast from October to January, while the dry season is from May to September. There is also a period lasting from October to November when rain can occur in many parts of the island. The average temperature ranges from 27°C in the low-lying coastal regions, to 16°C in the higher regions.
For up-to-date forecasts, check www.weather.com.
CLOTHING AND ESSENTIAL ITEMS FOR SRI LANKA TRAVEL
Loose, natural fabrics all year are recommended, but warmer clothing is required in the highlands and in the winter in Sri Lanka. Winter in Sri Lanka isn’t typically cold, but sweaters are recommended for early mornings and evenings. Rainwear is essential during the wet season. As a rule shoulders and knees should be covered when entering religious sites.
FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS: Video camera, camera with zoom lens in a dust-resistant case, sufficient memory cards, a spare camera battery and charger. Photography is not allowed in certain religious buildings, especially temples. So be sure to ask permission before you take a photo.
CURRENCY IN SRI LANKA
Generally speaking, we advise bringing US$50-75 per day, per person, for spending money. Be sure to bring lots of small bills for porters, wait staff and housekeeping (not obligatory and based on your satisfaction). The national currency in Sri Lanka is the Sri Lankan rupee which comes in paper and coin form. Notes come in denominations of Rs10, 20, 50, 100, 500, 1000, 2000, and 5000. Coins come in denominations of Cts1, 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, and Rs1, 2, 5, 10.
We recommend that you get local currency from your bank before you leave home or from a bank machine in-country which is much cheaper than an exchange service at the airport or in tourist areas. Your bank card may work, but Visa or MasterCard are more widely accepted.
For current exchange rates please visit www.xe.com
QUICK FACTS FOR A SRI LANKA TOUR