Sri Lanka Transport
Enjoy the variety of amazing transport modes.
Sri Lanka has some of the most beautiful train journeys in the world. An impressive rail network dating back from the British days when tea had to be brought down from the mountains to the ships in harbour.
Sri Lanka’s famous blue train is on most travelers to-do lists. Remember pictures of excited backpackers riding on door thresholds for hours on end whilst they enjoy unparalleled vistas of lush green mountain valleys passing through numerous tea plantations. This is like no other place on earth.
Buses are the most economical in terms of price and travel time saved.
Buses come in two main forms. There are the intercity buses which operate an express service, for example from the capitol Colombo to the unofficial capitol of “down south” Matara. This route takes the new highway through the middle of the country. Journey time is about 2 hours. The scenery is mainly lush green valleys and occasional tea plantations.
Airport buses are in two forms, A few buses as mentioned above, go direct to Matara from the airport. Otherwise you catch the airport “shuttle” bus which takes under an hour to the main bus stand in Colombo. This bus service is about every 15 minutes in the daytime. From Colombo main bus stand , you have a variety of choices to the main towns.
The local buses are an experience in themselves, brightly lit and decorated in amazing colours. Packed with local people listening to Sri Lankan “Bob Marley” music videos. There are no timetables as such, you just wait by the roadside bus stops where the locals are waiting. And you just hop on – when a bus comes. They are normally very frequent. Baggage – is what you can carry – there is not much space.
Tuk Tuk’s are very popular for local trips – the great advantage is traveling in the open air with unobstructed views. When you stop in traffic, you get to smile and nod at the ever friendly locals. Price is negotiable – very negotiable – so arrange a fixed price before you get in. A few will have a meter – like in Colombo. The other advantage of the Tuk Tuk is that when you are travelling, if you see something you like – you can ask the driver to stop whilst you shop of take photos.
Scooters are available – check what the real situation is with insurance and what licence you need!
Pre arranged airport pickups are the best options for most tourists, especially for first time visitors. After your flight, you want a simple journey to your destination. “Good Hotels Sri Lanka” and “Sri Lank Island Tours” are “obviously” more than happy to arrange airport pickup for you and your guests.