Sri Lanka Transport; All you need to know!

Travelling during your much-awaited Sri Lanka Tour is guaranteed to be easy and comfortable as there are many options and means to choose from! You have a choice with regards to price, comfort level and the kind of experience you wish to have! You can travel with ease in the small island of Sri Lanka where all you need to see is only a couple of minutes or hours away.
train (1)
Photo Credits: Sri Lankan Nature

Here’s a list of travel options to choose from and make your Sri Lanka Travels and Tours the best one yet:

1. Public Transport

Public Transport is definitely the cheapest means of getting about Sri Lanka but a fair warning that it can get a little crowded during peak hours or holidays. Trains and Buses are the means of public transport in Sri Lanka and offer a unique Sri Lanka travel experience to its travelers.


Bus routes cover about 80% of the nation’s 90,000km of roads and are the primary mode of transport for the locals. Tickets are quite cheap and are budget-traveler friendly. On average, the price of a bus ticket within city limits cost less than USD 0.5! Most buses now have part of their destination sign in English making it much easier and more accessible. Hop in to an intercity or a semi-luxury bus for a quicker and more comfortable ride to your destination.


Some of the most scenic train routes are available in Sri Lanka for a very low price. It’s a good idea to book your train ticket earlier as the Sri Lanka Railways Department opens up their pre-booking facility 30 days before the departure date of a specific train. You can choose the class you want to travel in or alternatively travel in the observation deck to enjoy the view. Tickets are quite cheap and you can get about from a price less than USD 10. It’s the best of both worlds indeed when you’re able to travel with the best views of mountains and greenery or the sandy seas and coconut trees surrounding you for a budget-friendly price.
Photo Credits: Ania Kępa

2. Hiring a vehicle

You can either hire a self-drive car for which you will need an International Driving Permit (IDP) sold by auto clubs in your home country or much easily hire a car with a driver. This will guarantee much flexibility in your travels and while the driver deals with the stress of driving, you can enjoy the view from your window!

Compared to public transport, as expected, hiring a vehicle is pricier! Various formulas exist for setting costs, such as rates per kilometer in addition a meal allowance and separate fuel payments. It’s east and best to agree on a flat fee with no extras for an average if about USD 60 excluding fuel. You may have to pay more for newer and air-conditioned vehicles.

Travel time in Sri Lanka is now shrinking owing to the new highways and expressways that have come up. The expressways are toll roads, however, the tolls are relatively quite cheap. You can easily cut down on your travel time to the Airport by using the Colombo–Katunayake Expressway or travel down south to Galle in an hour or so by using the Southern Expressway. Guess what? There are more expressways to come!

3. Other methods of transport


Worried about how you’re going to travel short distances without the hassle of public transport? Fear not! Here comes the tuk-tuk to the rescue! Three-wheelers, popularly known as tuk-tuks, are easy to find anywhere in Sri Lanka! You can travel in truly Sri Lankan style for super cheap. Make sure you always choose a metered tuk-tuk to avoid over-charging.
Photo Credits: Tuk Tuk rental

Order via app

The latest mode of transport that has taken Sri Lanka by storm are the transportation applications such as Uber and PickMe. You can get a tuk-tuk, car or even a van pick you up from your door step. It’s only a few clicks away; traveling around Colombo and its suburbs have been made that much easy.

All of the Cinnamon Hotels and Resorts are located in close proximity to public transport, especially our city hotels have bus stops right at the doorstep! Should you require any assistance getting around Sri Lanka, we will be happy to help, you only have to ask and our staff will help you make your way in perfect comfort and ease to your next destination.

Author: Shenella Fonseka

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