Sri Lanka Culinary Journey with Geoff Jansz
Explore the idyllic island nation of Sri Lanka with Abercrombie and Kent in the company of renowned cook and self-proclaimed gastronaut, Geoff Jansz.
Blessed with a wonderful tropical climate and a go slow attitude, Sri Lanka is one of the most alluring destinations in the world and home to an extraordinary culinary heritage. With Geoff as your accomplished escort and teacher you’ll see ancient sites and modern day attractions, be part of unique cultural experiences and enjoy some specially tailored culinary experiences along the way. There’s no better way to experience this charming and diverse destination.
Sunday 2 October 2016: Arrive Negombo
Arrive into Colombo to a warm A&K welcome and transfer to your hotel at nearby Negombo. The rest of the day is at leisure.
Monday 3 October 2016: Negombo.
After breakfast at your hotel, the day is at leisure. An optional half-day city tour is available to the Colombo residence of renowned Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa. Later in the day meet your host Geoff Jansz, your A&K Tour Director and other travelling companions for a reception by the beach followed by a welcome dinner (B, D).
Tuesday 4 October 2016: Negombo – Sigiriya.
This morning enjoy a poolside breakfast in the company of the hotel’s executive chef followed by a visit to the Lellamat Fish Market. Here you will select the fish of your choice to be used in this afternoon’s seafood cooking class with Geoff. After lunch, travel north to the Cultural Triangle and the cliff top citadel of Sigiriya where you check in to your hotel (B,L).
Wednesday 5 October 2016: The Cultural Triangle.
This morning is a fascinating lesson in the art of cooking kiri bath (milk rice) and its associated dishes followed by a visit to a local family home where you will sample delicious homemade delicacies. View the many varieties of fruit and vegetables that are being cultivated there, and observe the traditional method of preparing rice and curry. Afterwards, Geoff will lead a hands-on cooking demonstration followed by a lunch of local specialties. Late this afternoon you are driven to Polonnaruwa to visit the superb 5th century city and the Archaeological Museum (B,L).
Thursday 6 October 2016: The Cultural Triangle.
Today visit Sigiriya, A UNESCO World Heritage site, Sigiriya is a fortress complex set 200m up on an enormous rocky outcrop. Dating to the 5th century, the site is a complex of buildings, part royal palace and part self-contained town with the famous Lion Gate, water gardens, walls and moats on par with the best in the ancient world. In a sheltered pocket approached by a spiral stairway are the famous Sigiriya frescoes, 21 figures of females depicted as rising from the clouds, some of the earliest surviving pictorial art in Sri Lanka. Following lunch visit Minneriya National Park for an afternoon game drive. The park forms part of an elephant corridor, guaranteeing sightings of elephants throughout the year. From August to October, during The Gathering, more than 300 elephants can be seen making their way to Minneriya Tank as the ancient tank slowly dries up, giving way to a carpet of fresh grass and shoots which provides an abundant feast for a huge species of birds and animals as well as elephants (B,L).
Friday 7 October 2016: Sigiriya – Dambulla – Matale – Kandy.
Today, visit the World Heritage site of Dambulla, known for its richly-painted cave temples. The temple’s frescoes are over 2000 years old, and a further highlight is the colossal 15 metre figure of the recumbent Buddha, carved out of the rock. En route to Kandy, visit the renowned Matale Spice Gardens. In the late afternoon, enjoy an intriguing cultural performance featuring traditional Sri Lankan dancing (B,L).
Saturday 8 October 2016: Kandy.
After breakfast, enjoy a visit to Kandy’s most sacred site, the Temple of the Tooth. Tradition relates that a sacred tooth relic of the Lord Buddha was brought to Sri Lanka in the 4th century A.D. and was enshrined here. Later, drive to Peradeniya to explore the Royal Botanical Gardens accompanied by a professor of botany. Founded in 1824, the gardens are home to some of the most valuable botanical collections in the world. This evening, join Geoff and the hotel’s chefs in a hands-on cooking class where you will learn to make traditional kottu roti and Sri Lanka’s famous egg hoppers (B,L,D).
Sunday 9 October 2016: Kandy – Nuwara Eliya.
Today, take a memorable railway journey through a truly beautiful landscape of mist-covered mountains and scenic waterfalls, widely considered one of the most scenic in the highlands of Sri Lanka. Catch glimpses of sari-clad plantation-workers as you pass through lush green tea estates. Enjoy a picnic lunch on board before arriving into Nuwara Eliya and transferring to your hotel. The evening is at leisure (B,L).
Monday 10 October: Nuwara Eliya.
After breakfast, Geoff will escort you on a morning “Tea Experience” at a tea plantation when the traditional manufacturing process will be explained. Continue with a city tour of Nuwara Eliya before returning to the hotel for lunch. In the late afternoon, High Tea will be served (B,L).
Tuesday 11 October: Nuwara Eliya – Galle.
Today you are driven southwest to seaside Galle, enjoying a picnic lunch en route. Arrive early evening (B,L).
Wednesday 12 October: Galle.
This morning experience the quintessential sight of Sri Lankan stilt fishermen perched over swirling waters on slender poles waiting for their daily catch. After lunch at the hotel, enjoy a tour of the fascinating city of Galle. An ancient trading post, this World Heritage-listed fortified town has been a stronghold of both the Dutch and the British. Today, narrow streets lined with old houses and pillared verandas display their rich heritage. This evening, enjoy sunset cocktails and Sri Lankan canapés before a “Rotti” dinner at the Paddy Island (B,L,D).
Thursday 13 October 2016: Galle.
This morning, Geoff along with your hotel’s executive chef will host a fascinating introduction to the iconic Sri Lankan ingredients of breadfruit and jackfruit. After a guided visit to the town’s markets, Geoff will lead a cooking class on archetypal Sri Lankan curry dishes. The rest of your day is at leisure (B,L).
Friday 14 October 2016: Galle – Colombo.
Drive to Colombo. In the early evening, take a walking tour of this fascinating city in the company of Colombo native Mark Forbes and his wife. Experience the chaotic and narrow winding streets of the Pettah Bazaar, and marvel at pillared colonial Dutch mansions and the 17th century Old Dutch Museum. Continue into the commercial hub of Colombo Fort where you’ll find another colonial treasure, the Old Dutch Hospital. Dating also from the 17th century, the complex is now host to high-end restaurants, bars and shops. This evening, a special farewell dinner is planned at Ministry of Crab, an iconic restaurant owned and managed by Sri Lankan celebrity chef Mr. Dharshan Munidasa, and renowned worldwide for its crustacean dishes (B,L,D).
Saturday 15 October 2016: Colombo.
Today you bid farewell to Sri Lanka as you transfer to the airport for your international departure flight (B).
Pricing from $8,475 per person twin share
Airfares not included. Payments made by credit card will incur a surcharge. Given the unique nature of this tour, only one departure is available as per the dates above, therefore places are strictly limited.