Exploring Sri Lanka with Kids: Part 2-Dambulla

And here is the Part 2 of our Srilanka holiday. If you have missed Part 1, you can read it here before you move to Part 2.

Kalundewa Mountain

Part 2 covers day 5, 6 and 7 and was probably my favourite part of the trip.

Our 11 Day itinerary

Day 1: Arrive at Colombo International Airport and drive to Kandy and check in to a hotel in Kandy

Day 2: Explore Kandy (Viewpoint, Botanical Gardens, Hindu Temple and Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic)

Day 3: Day trip to Nuwara Eliya

Day 4: Explore Kandy (Bahirawakanda Viharaya and Gem Factory) followed by a day trip to Pinnawala

Day 5: Check out from the hotel in Kandy and drive to Dambulla Cave Temple and check in to the hotel in Dambulla

Day 6: Nature walks, Pool and Relax at the resort.

Day 7: Day trip to Sigiriya Rock and Minneriya National Park

Day 8: Check out from the hotel and drive to Trincomalee and check in to a hotel in Trincomalee

Day 9: Pool and Beach all day

Day 10: Pool and Beach and check out from the hotel and drive to Negombo and check in to a hotel

Day 11: Pool Day and an evening flight back to Doha.

P.s. If I had to do it again, I would rather stop overnight in Negombo on Day 1, as the drive from the airport to Kandy is about 3 hours. And then drive to Kandy the next day while stopping over at Pinnawala

Where To Stay?

This hotel was recommended by our friends and I cannot recommend it enough! This hotel was probably the reason why I  loved our stay in Dambulla the most!

The lobby and dining area

Kalundewa Retreat is a 100 acre land, around the Kalundewa mountain and only has 7 rooms! We were upgraded to the Kumbuk Chalet, which had a private pool and a deck overlooking the lake. It was one of the most beautiful rooms I have ever stayed in! I loved the entire room made of glass (and no lizards inside)

Couldn’t get enough of this beautiful Kumbuk Chalet
The view of the room from the deck
I could sit here all day and watch the birds, read a book and just soak it all in!

Their service was absolutely amazing… the chef came to our room to take our order, they had club cars to take you around the property if you aren’t willing to walk or cycle around or are just plain scared of the water monitors that you might encounter on the way (although they run away from you cause they are more scared of you, but I can never take that risk and obviously used their club cars to go around)

Dinner on the lake

DSCF9656We all didn’t want to leave the hotel to go anywhere and just wanted to enjoy the peace and tranquillity at the resort. And that’s what we did.

The Lobby and the Dining area
Nature walks around the property
It’s an eco-friendly hotel and even have a chefs garden. The villagers growing crops on the property

While exploring we also went to have a peek into the Floating Villa.

The Floating Villa
View from the upper deck of the floating villa.

A true tranquil retreat!DSCF9741-Edit

Things to do/see around Dambulla

Golden Temple / Cave Temple

Golden Temple of Dambulla is a World Heritage Site is about 10 minutes away from the hotel.Dambulla_9505The Golden Buddha statue, Dambulla golden temple is just downhill from the Cave temple. You need to climb a number of stairs to reach the cave temples.Dambulla_9510We all braved the climb but the boys were too tired so they stayed back and Amna and I continued to the top. But when we reached the top, we realized that my wallet was with Mohsin and we didn’t have money to purchase the tickets. Hence we didn’t get a chance to go inside the cave temple as were not keen to go back and do the climb again! So we just took a photo at the top and came back.Dambulla_9518

Sigiriya Rock

Sigiriya Rock is an ancient rock fortress near Dambulla and is a World Heritage site. There are 1,200 steps before you reach the Lion Rock fortress on top of Sigiriya rock, so we (with 3 whiny kids who didn’t want to come and wanted to just stay at the hotel and play in their private pool) didn’t brave that one at all. Dambulla_9673Instead, we took a tuk-tuk ride that took us around Sigiriya rock, stopping at picturesque locations from where you get amazing views of the Sigiriya Rock.

Best View cafe, that was true to its name!




The beautiful lush green area around Sigiriya Rock



Ponds full of Lotus

And lots of monkeys monkeying around. In fact, we encountered a little monkey attack when the monkeys saw the ice lollies in our hands and came running to snatch them away (so yeah please don’t eat in front of these monkeys!)


Minneriya National Park

If you visit Sri Lanka, you MUST visit one of the national parks there to see the Elephants in the wild. The experience of seeing these giants out in the wild is not at all comparable to the experience you have at Pinnwala Elephant Orphanage. Dambulla_9859Minneriya National Park is reported to have the largest known wild Asian Elephant gathering at one place in the world. It was definitely one of the most amazing experiences of my life and would highly recommend it.Dambulla_9734




That’s it for now, but stay tuned for the last part… COMING SOON!



5 thoughts on “Exploring Sri Lanka with Kids: Part 2-Dambulla

  1. Zainab

    Love your blog! Your photography is a treat to the eyes. We’re planning a trip to Sri Lanka too, did you use a tour guide service to take you around?


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