Sri Lanka

CYCLE SRI LANKA CHALLENGE

9 days

ITINERARY

5 days

CYCLING

475km

Distance

Dates

2025 & 2026

Tropical Island Adventure on Two Wheels

Cycle the width of Sri Lanka on this 9-day adventure encompassing 3 UNESCO World Heritage sites. This challenge is filled with breathtaking scenery and cultural landmarks, offering a deep dive into the island’s beauty and heritage. Challenging yet rewarding, you can expect unforgettable experiences, from friendly encounters to tranquil moments by the Indian Ocean.

The Challenge

Cycle Sri Lanka, Coast to Coast

The tropical island of Sri Lanka is a must-visit destination, with its vibrant and historically rich architecture and incredibly diverse scenery. This thrilling challenge takes us from Sri Lanka’s beautiful west coast, weaving inland over the central highlands, exploring tea plantations and beautiful landscapes, around Kandy and onto the principal port of Trincomalee. We will be soaking up the landmarks as we pass, including Dambulla Cave Temple a UNESCO World Heritage site. Our adventure concludes on the northeast coast, relaxing by the Indian Ocean. This is a challenging trip and not for the faint-hearted, but the stunning scenery, friendly people and rare insight into rural Sri Lankan life will not disappoint.

LAUNCH DEAL

Sign up for any of our overseas cycle challenges, and receive a free Action Challenge cycle jersey, worth £35!

Action Challenge Cycle Jersey

VALID UNTIL 30TH JUNE 2024

The Experience

Life on the Cycle

On an Action Challenge trip you’ll be part of a team which takes on an adventure together – and that’s what makes the experience so special. Getting to know others, supporting each other when the going gets tough, laughing together, and sharing those special moments & the new friendships that will stay with you for many years. Led by a UK Leader and supported by a Medic overseeing the group’s wellbeing – you’ll be in safe hands. Our expert local logistics team & guides will ensure each day runs like clockwork. These are ‘fully inclusive’ trips – leaving you to focus on your challenge, and to enjoy it!

An Action Challenge trip is much more than a holiday! It brings like-minded people together in fantastic landscapes, provides the best support & great hospitality, and enables the group to take on a tough & unforgettable challenge which forges new friendships, broaden horizons, and leaves you wanting more of life’s adventures!

The blueprint for Action Challenge trip is based on delivering a high quality enjoyable experience – and doing it all safely. An experienced UK Leader ensures that all aspects of the challenge run to plan – and one of our UK Medics with an expedition med kit is on-hand to look after the group’s wellbeing – enabling everyone to have the best chance of successfully completing their challenge.

We go to great lengths to ensure that we only use the best local organisations to supply the all-important ground logistics and the on-challenge support, catering, and hospitality teams – with experienced guides leading the way on the trails with their deep local knowledge and authentic style.

Like minded people with a similar sense of adventure – but often from very different backgrounds, and with a wide range of experience, ages, levels of fitness, and personal ambitions. Our trips are perfect for individuals, couples, and small groups of friends to join – and then to take on a unique challenge as part of a larger group which shapes & bonds as the adventure unfolds!

Whether it’s the hotels,  restaurants & transfers before & after the main challenge – or the challenge accommodation & meals whilst out on the trails – our all inclusive packages mean that you will get a top quality experience at a great value price! Flights are generally included, but there’s a ‘land only’ option if you’d prefer to book your own – and single supplement accommodation upgrades are available.

Visas- You must organise your Visa yourself prior to arrival in Sri Lanka. Advice on how to apply for this will be provided to you once booked onto the challenge in the App. 

The group comes together – takes on a tough challenge together – and then celebrates its achievements in style on the final night of the trip in a local restaurant or hotel, with medals, awards, and a maybe a bit of a party! Many of our participants make new special friends on our trips – and quite a few come back together for another challenge in the following years!

A successful challenge starts with good preparation. The better prepared you are the more confident you’ll be, and the more you’ll enjoy it! Our ‘Challenge App’ will have all the info & details of what to expect on your challenge – and how to prepare for it – and we have optional training walks, training weekends , and a place on one of our UK Ultra Challenge events to get out on the tails and test your fitness, kit, & equipment.

Itinerary & Route

Please note that some details of the itinerary may change, you will be provided with a detailed itinerary once you are signed up to the challenge.

We will depart London on an overnight flight to Colombo.

Meals: D (On Flight)           Accom: Flight

Upon arrival in Colombo, we will be met by our guides and driven by private bus to our hotel on Sri Lanka’s West Coast overlooking the Indian Ocean. Here, we will check in and we have a little time for relaxation after our long flight, before a bike fitting and briefing with our guides on the challenge ahead. This will be followed by a great Sri Lankan welcome dinner before we get some rest.

Meals: B,L,D   Accom: Hotel

For the first day of our Sri Lankan adventure, we start our challenge in the cooler air of the early morning. Following breakfast at the hotel, the first 35 km will be a gentle warm-up as we take the coastal roads south along the old Portuguese waterways. We will then head inland and tackle two short and steep roads which should shake the jetlag out of us! These are the foothills of the mountainous central highlands that we will be cycling through over the next three days. Once out of the hills at Ruwanwella, we will stop for lunch
and enjoy the scenery. Our cycle will re-commence in the afternoon with a final 30km of gentle uphill pedalling to our accommodation on the banks of the Kelani River, where a cold beer is waiting for
us. This was the site for the filming of David Lean’s masterpiece “Bridge on the River Kwai”. For our meal tonight we have a great buffet of local delicacies.

Distance Cycled- 76km

Meals: B,L,D   Accom: Hotel

This is one of our toughest days as we make our way into the heart of the central highlands. After breakfast, we will transfer to Kotagala 30 minutes to avoid the main roads and start our day’s challenge at Kotalgala. We will then start by cycling through the Thalawakelle Tea Estate, where we stop for a cup of the finest Ceylon Tea, overlooking the magnificent Devon waterfall. From here our route heads up through Watagoda on incredible estate roads cut into the escarpment, on 18km of the toughest section of our Sri Lankan challenge. Nothing quite prepares you for this and many of us may end up walking to the top. A challenging day, yet extremely rewarding! Upon reaching the top, we will stop for lunch and a rest before continuing with our adventure into the afternoon. The day finishes with a relaxing downhill to our comfortable hotel in Nuwara Eliya. Here, we will enjoy a group dinner before getting some much-needed rest. 

Distance Cycled- 78km

Meals: B,L,D   Accom: Hotel

Today will be an exciting although long day in the saddle. Following breakfast, we will leave Nuwara Eliyaand and embark on a 50+km
downhill that will take us down through more beautiful tea estate countryside. The views will be extremely picturesque.  As we get to Delpitiya, we will continue with our ride on quiet roads for the next 50km with the most spectacular landscape. We will stop for lunch near the village of Pupuressa with its wonderful waterfalls, and in the afternoon we make our way through Gallaha and into Kandy, located in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. A religious city rich in history and stunning architecture. We will enter alongside its beautiful University and continue through the bustling mayhem of the roads to our lovely hotel. As evening approaches, we will leave our bikes at the central hotel, and venture out to explore the delights of this colourful city. The evening will conclude with a group meal before returning to our hotel. 

Distance Cycled- 110km

Meals: B,L,D   Accom: Hotel

After a great breakfast, we will have a long day cycle ride once again, directly from our hotel through the bustling streets of Kandy to Wattegama where we return to quiet roads. A major contrast from the bustling city we just left.  We will continue by descending from the hill country to the flat “dry zone”, with great views of the Knuckles mountain range to the east. At a suitable point along the route, we will stop for lunch and enjoy the views. We will continue with our adventure into the afternoon, and from Matale the roads are flanked by giant fig trees, that provide welcome shelter from the sun and we stop for lunch at a local spice garden where we can see the abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables that are produced in this region. The last section of our ride today is to the famous Dambulla Cave Temple, from where we are transferred to the hotel
in Habarana to relax by the pool and recover from our long cycling day. We will then enjoy a group dinner before getting some much-needed rest. 

Distance Cycled- 124km

Meals: B,L,D   Accom: Hotel

This is the final day of our cycling challenge! The ride today will be almost completely flat, and the kilometres will pass quickly. This area is recovering from the effects of more than 20 years of civil war where the Tamil Tigers fought with the government forces for recognition and independence. As we continue, we will pass the Kantale Reservoir, one of the oldest and biggest in Sri Lanka. This is going to be a hot day and there is very little in the way of shade. We will take regular stops along the way, including a rest stop for lunch at around midday. Eventually, the air will get fresher as the sea breeze begins to blow from the coast. This will mark the imminent end of our ride, with an immense feeling of euphoria and pride. As we check in to our hotel, we will have the chance to relax before the celebrations commence. We will enjoy a celebratory meal at the hotel and enjoy a drink or two before getting some well-earned rest.

Distance Cycled- 87km

Meals: B,L,D   Accom: Hotel

This morning, after breakfast in the hotel, we will transfer back to Colombo. We should arrive in the afternoon and will be dropped off in the centre of town. The rest of the day will be free to explore at our own pace and visit the main sights of this city. This evening is then left free to decide whether we would prefer to relax or embrace the chance for those who wish to make their way into Colombo to see it by night.

Meals: B,L  Accom: Hotel

This morning, we will return to the international airport in Colombo in time for our flight back to the UK.

Meals: B

Costs & Fundraising

We have two payment & fundraising options for you to take on this challenge.

Self Funding

Sign up with a £295 online deposit & balance payment due 12 weeks before, with no fundraising target.

Fundraise for Charity

Sign up with a £295 online deposit & fundraise for a charity of your choice, with different target options.

Our Brochure

The Challenge brochure details the full itinerary, inclusions, and more – download for a full run down of the challenge details. 

Dates & Prices

GET IN TOUCH

Enquire with us below or if you want to speak to one of the team call on +44 (0)207 6695

About You
Trip Enquiry

e-bike rental

Not everyone is a regular cyclist – or perhaps you simply want the option to relax and take in the scenery. That’s why we offer e-bike rental on our cycle challenges. These lightweight mountain bikes come with a small electric motor that can be charged each evening – and will give you the option of a power boost on uphill sections, or the ability to ease off the pedals on the flat.

You can reserve your e-bike when registering, or contact us later to add it to your booking. 

FREE CYCLE JERSEY

Sign up to any of our NEW overseas cycle challenges before 30th June 2024, and you will receive a FREE Action Challenge cycle jersey, worth £35!

Be the envy of your friends, and look stylish while training for your 2-wheeled adventure!

PLUS – you’ll also receive a place on one of our famous ‘Ultra Challenge’ events, worth £139! Join over 30,000 other adventurers, and walk, jog or run your chosen distance in some of the UK’s most iconic locations. Visit the website for details:

WWW.ULTRACHALLENGE.COM

Register for your overseas Challenge – you’ll be sent a Discount Code worth £139 to sign up to a 2024 Ultra Challenge.

CONDITIONS

– Offer valid between 10th April & 30th June 2024

– Deal cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer

– If you cancel your overseas challenge, the value of the Ultra Challenge will be deducted from any refund issued, if you have used the free place.

How it works...

SELF FUNDING

It’s like paying for an all-inclusive holiday.

You pay the registration deposit. The final balance for the trip cost will be due no later than 10 weeks before your departure date

If you want to fundraise for charity, you may still do this separately – either on or offline. All fundraising will be a direct donation to your chosen charity. Please contact them for more information.

How it works...

CHARITY FUNDRAISING

Take on one of our challenges and support a charity of your choice. You can choose how much of the trip cost you want to pay, and support your charity by fundraising the rest.

You pay the registration deposit, then fundraise double the remaining trip cost for a charity of your choice.

Action Challenge will invoice your charity for your final balance 12 weeks before departure.

You must complete 80% of your fundraising by 12 weeks before departure, with the remaining 20% completed 4 weeks after departure.

Let us know what charity you want to support when registering so that we can set up your challenge agreement.