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Motorcycle road trip Sri Lanka

On the Roads of Ceylon


Explore this lost paradise in the Indian Ocean, on a stunning motorbike tour.

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Benoît
Georgia

Georgia, Travel designer

An intrepid all-rounder, she has cruised India’s roads with many groups, and knows the country like the back of her leather-gloved hand.

Got a passion for motorbikes, nature and history? Then head off along Sri Lanka’s magical roads and trails. There are many Indian influences here, but they are lighter, softer, and restyled. Enter a radiant and luxuriant world – from the cultural triangle to the tea plantations, with a detour via Trincomalee before venturing into rainforests and national parks, then ending your trip near Galle, with feet dipped in the sea. For bikers who fancy intensely new surroundings and variety, this complete motorcycle tour blends cultural riches and beautiful landscapes.

Useful information
Period January to April
Duration 12 days incl. 9 days' riding
Level Intermediate
English-speaking tour leader
Accommodation Comfort or Boutique
From 3180€/pilot
2880€/pillion

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Your Motorcycle Tour in Sri Lanka 12 stages - 1300 Km


negombo sri lanka oruwa boat fisherman
D1 / Arrive in Negombo

You'll be met at the airport, and transferred to your hotel. Unguided visit of this coastal resort and fishing port and resort. R&R on the beach or by the pool.

sri lanka fisherman beach
D2 / Negombo - Kalpitiya - 110 Km

Your Sri Lankan motorcycle tour begins on a series of small ocean front roads, and a few trail sections. Coconut plantations and other tropical scenery scrolls by. Arrive in Kalpitiya, with its wild beaches.

sri lanka swimming pool hotel luxury resort
D3 / Kalpitiya - Sigiriya - 160 Km

You need to rise early to admire the dolphins' balletic frolics off Kalpitiya. Then back down to earth, for a ride to the centre/north of the island. You cruise through magnificent scenery - jungles, lakes, rice fields, plus coconut and banana groves.

sri lanka schoolgirl road
D4 / Sigiriya - Polonnaruwa Loop - 140 Km

This morning, you head off on an excursion to Polonnaruwa, whose wonderfully preserved remains bear witness to the past splendour of Lanka's former capital. Then back to the hotel, and a free late afternoon in Sigiriya.

sri lanka motorcycle couple paddy field
D5 / Sigiriya - Trincomalee - 140 Km

A morning ride to the fortress of Sigiriya, then we head for the east coast. Keep your eyes peeled, as wild elephants sometimes go walkabout on or near the asphalt! After settling into the hotel, a free afternoon or snorkeling with sharks and turtles if the weather allows.

motorcycle trip sri lanka landscape biker mountain
D6 / Trincomalee - Knuckles Range - 280 Km

You progress south, then west. You're at the foot of the Knuckles Range. The climb begins on a smooth road, and you reach your overnight address through pine forests, tea plantations and tropical forest.

sri lanka motorcycle tour
D7 / Knuckles Range - Nuwara Eliya - 140 Km

You ride deep into the heart of the island, and the highland plateaux region. A serious gradient - so hang on... up to nearly 2,000 metres. The road runs past reservoirs of light blue water, then winds through the tea plantations. You'll learn the secrets of tea making in Nuwara Eliya, the country's highest town.

sri lanka tea estate plantation pluckers
D8 / Nuwara Eliya - Ella - 90 Km

A short journey, along a very twisty mountain road, with regular vantage-points surveying verdant terraced crops and the surrounding summits. You settle into the hotel in Ella.

sri lanka route elephant
D9 / Ella - Uda Walawe - 170 Km

You leave the high plateaux behind and make for the south coast. After a refreshing break by the Ravana Falls, you carry on cruising along a magnificent mountain road, smooth but winding. In the afternoon, a jeep safari in Uda Walawe National Park, with scenery reminiscent of the African savanna.

sri lanka bathing river
D10 / Uda Walawe - Matara - 95 Km

After this wilderness immersion, you head back south towards the ocean. Enjoy this last proper day of motorcycling to lap up the scenery. En route, you'll stop off at the holy rock of Mulkiri Gala and ride as far as Matara, a city fortified by the Dutch in the 17th century.

sri lanka beach sea coconut tree
D11 / Matara - Galle - 40 Km by car

This morning, a four-wheeled trip along the coast to Galle via the pretty resort of Mirissa and the highly colourful port of Weligama Bay. In Galle, after walking the ramparts and patrol paths of the imposing Dutch-built fort, take time to wander through the alleyways of the fortified town.

sri lanka stilt fisherman
D12 / Galle - Negombo

It's the end of your road trip in Sri Lanka! Today you ride back to Colombo. Transfer to Negombo airport by private vehicle, based on your flight-departure time.

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The riders' opinions

Antz
Well organized

“Well organized, excellent tour lead with support crew.”

Doddy.
We were a bunch of mates from Norwich …

“We were a bunch of mates from Norwich in the UK looking for something different on bikes. We decided to email 2 company's, Vintage rides and another Aussie outfit based in Nepal. Both company's provided a detailed route in the Mustang Valley in Nepal. The Aussie company was slightly cheaper but the bikes looked older and most importantly sending 20,000 euro's abroad to either company did not appeal to me! However Vintage rides payments are covered via our version of ABTA. The Aussie company payments were not. Easy choice for us. We arrived in Nepal to be greated by the coolest dude at the airport in leather jacket, ciggy in one hand , his name Francois. I can go on and bang on about what an experience the ride was which it was but if you are looking for a company to to have the ride of your life then Vintage rides is at the top of the game. All hotels were fantastic, we bumped into another British company half way up the Mustang valley and I have to say I was glad I had booked Vintage rides. The bike the Britsh had were all sorts of old Royal Enfields and the hotel they were in looked terrible, even the Britsh tour t-shirts they were wearing looked like they were from pound land ! Francois our gide put up with 8 middle aged blokes on a 12 day bender! One hotel we drunk dry !! Brexit was mentioned once or twice but we all decided the French are not so bad after all they can drink as well !! Francois new exactly where to take us ,he has done these trips most of his life. The support crew were 10 mins behind us all the time to fix puncures and fix bikes. Vintage rides is a company that know's what it is doiing and I would have no hesitation in booking another trip (Mongolia) again. A big thankyou to Francois and Denise for organising such a great trip. Roll on next year we are booking again. Doddy.”

Paul
Vintage Rides - Simply the Best.

“Having joined two tours in India previously with Vintage Rides I have no hesitation in booking a third and recommending this company as experts in their field to anyone contemplating a guided tour on the sub continent or the far east. Vintage Rides is a French company and as expected many of the riders are French speakers but it is not a barrier. I speak English and have only a little of the French language but I have been welcomed by both the tour leaders and the other riders without any problems at all. Communication is not a problem in the brotherhood off the bikers. The tour leaders know their stuff and take you to places off the well beaten tourist track, always mindful of one's safety. The support team for mechanical issues that can occasionally arise with the robust Royal Enfield 500cc Bullet bikes and for transport of luggage and local knowledge remove any concerns, just sit back and enjoy the ride.”

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