If you’re looking for a long-haul school trip that will broaden your students’ horizons and give them the opportunity to explore an ancient and rich culture very different to that of the UK, then Sri Lanka is an excellent choice of destination.
Still not sure? Here are some more reasons why you should choose Sri Lanka for your next school trip.
Lonely Planet’s Top Country to Visit in 2019
Lonely Planet have named Sri Lanka the top country to visit in 2019.
The magazine cited its recent rejuvenation after decades of civil war, its ancient architecture and abundant wildlife, growing surf scene, friendly locals and wonderful mix of religion and cultures as just some of the reasons to go now.
Ideal for a Cross-Curricular School Trip
If you’re going to travel all the way to Sri Lanka on a school trip, it’s nice to be able to offer this opportunity to as many students as possible.
And the endless educational experiences available in Sri Lanka make it ideal for a cross-curricular school trip.
Visits to temples and mosques could be useful experiences for religious studies students, while geography students will enjoy learning about agriculture (in particular, tea plantations) and the impact of tourism.
And food tech students (as well as everyone else on the trip!) will enjoy exploring the delights and flavours of Sri Lankan cuisine.
As an island with a coastline 1,340km long it will be no surprise to you that Sri Lanka has lots of beaches.
But you will be surprised by quite how spectacular some of these beaches are.
The glittering white sand and sparkling blue of the sea mean this really does feel like paradise.
And, even better, Sri Lanka’s small size means that you’re never far from a beach!
Diverse Landscapes and Experiences
We’ve already mentioned the stunning beaches that encircle the island.
But head inland and you’ll come across the country’s Central Highlands, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you’ll find rainforests and a huge variety of flora and fauna.
Then there’s the lush tea plantations, where you can discover how tea is produced.
Plus, of course, there’s plenty of beautiful architecture and culture to explore in cities like Kandy and Colombo.
Rich Cultural History
Sri Lanka’s documented history spans 2,000 years and so the country’s culture has ancient roots.
And yet it has also been influenced by more modern elements, including Portuguese, Dutch and British colonialism.
There is a strong history of visual and performance arts in Sri Lanka and so, during a school trip there, we would advise that you don’t miss the opportunity to see these, whether its taking in some of the spectacular architecture, or catching a traditional dance or musical performance.
Home to 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites
•Ancient city of Polonnaruwa
oThe city of Polonnaruwa is the second most ancient of Sri Lanka’s kingdoms, having been made the capital in the 11th century.
•The ancient city of Sigiriya
oThis iconic large rock is home to the ancient palace and fortress of the 5th century King Kashyapa.
•The Golden Temple of Dambulla
oThe Golden Temple of Dambulla is the largest and best-preserved cave temple complex in Sri Lanka.
•The old town of Galle and its fortifications
oFrom the 16th to the 18th century Galle was Sri Lanka’s main port.
•The sacred city of Anuradhapura
oAnuradhapura was the first ancient capital of Sri Lanka and is home to the well-preserved ruins of the Great Sri Lankan Civilisation.
•The sacred city of Kandy
oKandy was the capital of the Sinhalese Kings from the 16th to the 19th century and has, in part, been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site because it is the home of the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, which houses the tooth relic of the Buddha.
•Sinharaja Forest Reserve
oThis national park is part of the lowland forests ecoregion and is packed full of wildlife, although it’s much harder to see here than in Yala National Park thanks to the thick vegetation.
•Central Highlands of Sri Lanka
oThis area consists of the Peak Wilderness Protected Area, the Horton Plains National Park and the Knuckles Conservation Forest and was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its incredible biodiversity.
Great Local Hospitality and Hotels
The accommodation options in Sri Lanka are excellent and there really is something to suit every group and tour. From historic hotels to modern ones, and city centre hotels to beachfront resorts, you will be spoilt for choice!
Some of the more unique accommodation options include chalet accommodation overlooking the iconic Sigiriya rock, villa accommodation in the heart of the cultural triangle and even a 4* safari resort just 500m from an elephant orphanage!
Whichever accommodation option you choose, you can be certain you will be greeted by friendly, smiling staff who won’t be able to do enough for you and your group.
Widely English Speaking
Thanks to its colonial past, English is still widely used in Sri Lanka and is a recognised language, alongside the official languages Sinhalese and Tamil.
Widely used for official and commercial purposes, you may well see English alongside the two official languages on signs as you travel around.
Sri Lanka has one of the highest rates of biological endemism in the world.
Elephants, lorises, sloth bears, leopards and macaques are just some of the animals that call Sri Lanka home, and one of the best places to see them is Yala National Park in the south east of the country.
Interested in arranging a school trip to Sri Lanka?