Even the most experienced salesperson planning Sri Lanka holiday itineraries can get caught up in sending clients along the typical tourist trail. We know that the ancient historical sites and dramatic central tea country are guaranteed to astound travellers, and many feel that a Sri Lanka journey is not complete without them.
However, it is important to remember that Sri Lanka has much more to offer than just its most popular tourist attractions – and not everyone is interested in experiencing the island’s culture and history, as awe-inspiring as these sites may be. This is especially true if it means travelling every other day to fit everything into a two-week Sri Lanka holiday itinerary.
Sri Lanka is so diverse that you can spend days just exploring one tiny corner of the island and experience just as much beauty and heritage as you would on the tourist trail. Take advantage of this incredible variety in such a small country and consider creating slow-paced holidays as well as the traditional fast full-island tour. Sri Lanka’s rich culture also lends itself to specialist tours – why not dare to design an itinerary solely devoted to wildlife, or heritage, or food?
Dig deep when speaking to your clients to discover their core desires and use these to design a Sri Lanka holiday that is truly unique to them. With our immense knowledge of the island and portfolio of unique Sri Lanka travel experiences, you can trust us to help you create an itinerary that will have them returning to the island time and time again.
Browse our 8 top tips on how to create unbeatable Sri Lanka holiday itineraries and take your tailor-made trips to the next level.
8 ways to create an unbeatable Sri Lanka holiday itinerary
On a traditional two-week full tour of Sri Lanka, clients have to travel every couple of days. Instead of trying to fit everything into one holiday, we recommend slowing down the itinerary to encompass the main interests of your client without frequent or long journeys. Be careful to base your clients in locations which allow for a variety of travel experiences – for example, staying in Ulagalla gives you easy access to historical sites and Wilpattu National Park and is just a short drive from Kalpitiya, Kandy and Trincomalee.
2.Keep it small
A current trend of modern travel is the desire to work through a bucket list, ticking off each destination after one visit and moving straight onto planning a trip to the next country. We believe that you need much more than one holiday to truly experience Sri Lanka – or any destination for that matter. Dissuade your clients from trying to do the whole country in one go and instead design an itinerary which focuses on one small section of the island. In peak season, why not try the Cultural Triangle, Kandy and its tea hills, and the west coast?
Each one of us is unique with our own personal interests, preferences and desires. Dare to design a Sri Lanka holiday itinerary that is truly tailor-made, specialised to the specific interests of your clients. Are they foodies? Create a tour that allows them to experience Sri Lanka’s culture through cuisine. Is it a family who love wildlife? Devote every day of the itinerary to an exciting adventure in nature. Do they want to be active? Fill their holiday with thrilling experiences in the great outdoors from rainforest treks to surfing at the beach.
4.Leave the tourist trail
The tourist trail becomes popular for a reason – because it is widely believed to be the best a destination can offer to travellers. But as each visitor is not the same, their favourite tourist attractions will not be the same either. Where on traveller might love the climb up Sigiriya Rock, another would prefer to meditate at Mihintale. While one client dreams of lazing on a tropical beach, another is driven by the colour and clamour of a big city. Have the confidence to recommend ‘less popular’ Sri Lanka experiences if they are better suited to your client.
5.Use unique experiences
We have spent the last two decades exploring every inch of the island and are proud to say that we have curated a vast array of unique Sri Lanka travel experiences. Set your itinerary apart from competitors with activities that your clients can’t find with any other company. Go on multi-day treks through remote countryside and stay in local villages; elevate your whale watching excursion by including a marine biologist guide or spotting them from the air; cook authentic Sri Lankan cuisine in a wattle-and-daub hut. The options are endless!
6.More than a place to sleep
When choosing accommodation for your clients, make sure that the hotel or villa is more than just a place to sleep. Even the most fast-moving and jam-packed itinerary involves plenty of hours in holiday accommodation, and it is this aspect of a trip that can make or break your clients’ experience of Sri Lanka. Be experimental: consider rural retreats or go glamping by a wildlife park; focus on beautiful design or the surroundings of the property; include in-house culinary experiences or unique guided activities – the list is endless.
Similar itineraries can lead to hugely different experiences depending on the authenticity of the elements that have been included. For example, staying in a remote community and living like a local will make much more of an impression than a half-day ‘village experience’ which has been created with tourists in mind. Don’t fall into the trap of using commercial gimmicks for your itinerary activities – prioritise authenticity and ensure that your clients not only experience the ‘real’ Sri Lanka, but also create strong memories that will last a lifetime.
8.Make special requests
Not sure if what your client wants is possible? Just ask! We love a challenge and we have created some absolutely astonishing tailor-made Sri Lanka tours in the past, from a four-day wedding party for 120 to a private experience of the Viceroy steam train for a VIP client. Speak to one of our talented travel consultants and we will endeavour to make dreams a reality.