Birds & Bawa Architecture Tour
Enjoy the comfort of the Green Globe award winning hotel, Heritance Kandalama with Jetwing Eco Holidays Sri Lanka & catch a glimpse of the country’s endemic birds.
Arrival in Sri Lanka and transfer to Jetwing Beach, Negombo for one night. Jetwing Beach was designed by Sri Lanka’s most renowned architect, Geoffrey Bawa
After breakfast leave for Heritance Kandalama, Dambulla for three nights. Heritance Kandalama was the Green Globe award winner and a masterpice of Geoffry Bawa and is hidden within the surrounding jungle. In the evening explore the hotel, its surroundings and walk in the hotel’s nature trail.
After breakfast birding around the Sigiriya Sanctuary to look for dry zone birds. Look for Orange-headed Thrush, Purple Sunbird, Stork-billed Kingfisher, Asian Paradise Flycatcher, White-rumped Shama and Shahin. Look for also see the rare Blue-eared Kingfisher around the Sigiriya Moat.
After lunch climb the 5th century AD fortress palace built by King Kasyappa, but suspected to have been in use by Mahayana Buddhists for many centuries previously. Sigiriya Rock Fortress is situated in the north central province belonging to the ‘Cultural Triangle’, in the dry lowlands of Sri Lanka. The rock is an inselberg, which dominates the landscape and was both a military refuge as well as an aesthetic refuge for king who was a patron of the arts. The frescoes of the bare breasted heavenly maidens, which remain are a fragment of a band, which may have held over 500 figures. In Arthur C Clarke’s science fiction novel, ‘The Fountains of Paradise’, the king had the architect blinded so that he could not construct another heaven on earth.
After breakfast leave for cultural excursion to Polonnaruwa. (A UNESCO World Heritage Site), the medieval capital of Sri Lanka. Visit the world famous rock-cut Buddha statues of Gal Vihara and the Parakrama Samudra (‘Sea of Parakrama’) a 2500-hectare man made reservoir built by King Parakramabahu I (1153 –1186 AD) with a capacity of 134 million cubic metres. Birding highlights include Wooly-necked Stork, Sri Lanka Grey Hornbill, Large Cuckoo Shrike and Coppersmith Barbet.
Afternoon, visit the Minneriya National Park to see elephants
After breakfast leave for Villa Talangama, Colombo for one night. Be it relaxation or bird watching, Talangama Villa offers the weary traveler the perfect blend of Sri Lankan hospitality and colonial aestheticism. Overlooking the Talangama marshes, Talangama Villa is the perfect escape, taking the word “tranquility”, to a new level. Tastefully furnished with the customer’s maximum comfort in mind where relaxation is the name of the game. Artistic simplicity at its best!
Evening, do a city tour of Colombo to visit architectural cites done by Bawa. See the Parliament, The Gallary café and other buildings.
After breakfast, leave for Jetwing Lighthouse, Galle for two nights. Enroute, lunch at Heritance Ahungalla Hotel, another Bawa masterpiece. At Heritance Ahungalla, a mermaid welcomes you to a place of tranquility, where space and water rules, open terraces and flowing water.
After breakfast visit Kanneliya Rain Forest for some birding. Here we look for low-land endemics like the Sri Lanka Grey Horn-bill, Chestnut-backed owlet, ect. Evening, do a city tour of Galle or optional spend the rest of the day with Spa treatment. The hotel is one of two members of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World in Sri Lanka. The drive to Galle will give you an unparalleled view of the Indian Ocean with its ever-changing panorama of blues, greens and aquamarines. The hotel’s architecture is inspired by the majesty of the old Dutch Fort in the Southern capital of Galle. Designed by one of Asia’s leading architects, Geoffrey Bawa, this architectural masterpiece looks out to the Indian Ocean, and is bordered by a stretch of golden beach. You may take a walk around Bawa’s creation admiring the austere architecture. Alternatively, you may prefer to dive into the crystal clear swimming pool, which seamlessly blends into the adjoining sea.
After breakfast, leave for The Blue Waters hotel, Wadduwa for two nights. En-route visit Lunuganga Estate, the country home of Geoffrey Bawa. The garden led Bawa, a lawyer called to the Bar at the Inner Temple in 1940, to decide to become an architect. Following that visit Brief Gardens which was the HOME & GARDEN of Bevis Bawa who is the brother of Geoffrey Bawa. Created between 1929 and 1989, Brief is the most inventive, enchanting and influential garden in Sri Lanka. Primarily an artist’s garden it is a series of beautifully composed views and spaces created at different moods, and connected by colorful and circuitous woodland walks.
Morning, Visit Sinharaja Rain Forest or optional spend the day at leisure. Sinharaja rain Forest (A UNESCO World Heritage Site) for lowland endemics and mixed species bird flocks. According a study of the mixed species bird on average 42 individual birds occur in the flocks, which makes this the world’s largest mixed species bird flock. The mixed species Bird flock study of Sinharaja forest has been continuing since 1981 and is considered as the World’s longest studied bird flock study. Birding highlights include Red-faced Malkoha, Sri Lanka Blue Magpie, White-faced Starling and Scaly Thrush.
After breakfast leave for Jetwing Lagoon, Negombo for one night. Jetwing Lagoon is historically significant for being the first resort designed by Geoffrey Bawa. Graceful hues of white and brown adorn our living spaces, granting a sense of serene opulence and freedom. The expansive swimming pool, the longest of its kind in the area, is nestled in the middle of the property and complements the overall sensation of pure relaxation.
Transfer to International Airport for departure