Passports and Visas
Please ensure your passport is valid for at least 6 months from the date of entry. You must obtain a US$35 visa (US$20 for SAARC countries and no charge for children under 12) via the ElectronicTravel Authorization (ETA)
system before entering the country. If you don't obtain a Visa Approved Reference number through ETA you can obtain a visa on arrival for US$40.
We recommend that you visit a travel medical doctor and ask about vaccines and /or antimalarial tablets. This is also a good opportunity to discuss important travel health issues including safe food and water, accidents, sun exposure and insect bites as the problems experienced cannot be prevented by vaccinations and other preventive measures need to be taken.
Sri Lanka has a tropical climate, with distinct dry and wet seasons. The seasons are slightly complicated by having two monsoons. From May to August the Yala monsoon brings rain to the island’s southwestern half and the Maha monsoon blows from October to January, bringing rain to the North and East. There is also an inter-monsoonal period in October and November when rain can occur in many parts of the island. Average temperatures for Colombo and the low-lying coastal regions are 27°C while at the higher altitudes like Kandy (500m), the average temperature is 20°C. A gortex rain jacket and a warm jumper for the central highlands are suggested clothing.
The best months to visit Sri Lanka are from December to March for the west coast, and from April to September for historical sites and the east coast. As we are traveling the length of the country it is likely for us to experience rain, however, it will be warm and we will likely continue riding through it.
The hotels listed are our first choice and where we hope you will stay, however, during festivals or other major events there is a chance we will have to substitute another hotel.
Meals are included as per the itinerary where B = breakfast, L = lunch, D = dinner. Most meals are local and feature rice and curries. Sri Lankan curries come in many varieties of colors and flavors and can be meat- or fish- based dishes, but there are also vegetable and even fruit curries. Many of the spices used have ayurvedic value when used in curries. Meals are a mixture of local and western cuisines, with the local key ingredients being rice, coconut and especially spices, reflecting the island's history as a spice producer and trading center for hundreds of years. Any special dietary requirements can also be catered for as well. Please let us know at the time of booking.
Keeping you completely hydrated is a job we take very seriously. Cold water, some energy-restoring local fruit, and soft drinks are included in the tour price while riding. Soft drinks and other beverages during meals are not included. Beer is readily available everywhere but is NOT included in the price.
SpiceRoads does not require you to pay a surcharge for traveling alone. We will arrange for you to share accommodation with another traveler of the same gender and if we can not match you up we will provide a single room at no extra charge. If you prefer not to share a single supplement is payable to guarantee your own room. The cost of the single supplement is listed above.
We recommend that you tuck away a few extra dollars, perhaps US$10 a day for incidentals.
The Sri Lankan currency is the rupee (Rs). There are several money changers in the capital as well as major tourist cities and attractions. They generally don’t charge commission and their rates are pretty good, with unlicensed money changers giving slightly better rates than officially licensed ones. However, ATMs are recommended if you are unsure and afraid of getting ripped off. ATMs have spread to all of the cities and major regional centers of Sri Lanka with Commercial Bank having the largest network of ATMs accepting international Visa, MasterCard, and Cirrus/Maestro cards. Any bank or exchange bureau will change major currencies into cash, including US dollars, euros and pounds sterling. To get the best rates, change rupees back into hard currency before you leave the country.