† Explanation of BAC Ride Fee – This fee is not included in the Estimated Cost and is non-refundable once submitted. The Ride Fee for US and Canada is $50 and $100 for all other countries, both are per participant.
OVERVIEW: Marco Polo called Sri Lanka the world's finest island, noting how it has seduced travelers for centuries. Surrounded by the Indian Ocean, its palm-fringed beaches are teeming with coconut trees and other exotic fruits while its in-land jungles are home to elephants, leopards and rare endemic bird life. The high hill country is carpeted with tea plantations and spice farms. Since early 2009, there is peace among the northern Hindu culture and the more prevalent Buddhists, which has transformed Sri Lanka into one of the world's hottest tourist centers and a must-do cycling destination. Over 15 days/14 nights, we will circle the lower portion of the island on road-bike friendly roads with full support from SpiceRoads. Along the way, we will visit many beautiful beaches along the coast and then turn inland to the hill stations and tea plantations with days off for a planned safari and tours of multiple ancient sites. Included in the tour are nearly all meals -- breakfast, lunch, dinner -- each day, full support, including RidewGPS routes, maps, GPX files, and front/rear support vehicles with bike racks, snacks, water, guides, BAC Happy Hours. The tour is limited to 25 participants who can reasonably expect to cycle the entire distance. If 16 or more riders signup, Spice Roads will reduce the price per person by $250.
RIDE RATING: 2B - . We will cycle ~400 miles in ten cycling days and climb ~17,000 feet. Based on average daily distance and climbing, this is a 2B ride. Day 8; is the hardest day with 32 miles and 3,970’. Day 11 has 63 miles, but only has 1,345 feet of climbing. Day 12 is 50 miles but has 2,300 feet of climbing. Our highest altitude for lodging is day 8 & 9 ~6,561’. We have arranged days off to fuel recovery, taking into account that January, while peak season in Sri Lanka, is not our prime training season. The Day-to-Day Itinerary has each day's mileage and climbing in detail below. Unfortunately on this ride, tandems cannot be accommodated
WEATHER: January is the ideal time and peak season to visit Sri Lanka, but we will be covering much of the island and venturing across ecosystems so 'prepare for the worst and hope for the best', meaning pack a good waterproof jacket for the jungle areas and a warmer sweater for the hill stations -- and plenty of sunscreen for the beaches.
Day 1 ( Wed 25 Jan 2023): Negombo Arrival Pick up from the airport and transfer to our beachside hotel. Enjoy the beach until we meet in the afternoon for bike fitting, a trip briefing and dinner at the hotel.
Accommodation: Suriya Resort
Meals:- /- / D Ride: 0 km
Day 2 ( The 26 Jan 2023): Negombo- Anuradhapura After breakfast and final adjustments to our bikes, we start riding out from the hotel heading inland along minor roads towards the ancient capital of Anuradhapura. Stopping after 30 kilometres at a local roti shop to regroup, snack and top up our water. The next 40 kilometres wending flat village roads are a joy to cycle along, experiencing rural Sri Lanka that most tourists seldom see, the simplicity of everyday life and friendly smiles are the highlights of this ride. After a late lunch, we transfer to our hotel.
Accommodation: Rajarata Hotel
Ride: 69 km +320M/-250M
Day 3 (Fri 27 Jan 2023): Explore the Ancient City of Anuradhapura by Bike Dating from the 4th century BC, Anuradhapura was the capital of the Sinhalese Kingdom until the beginning of the 11th century AD and has some of the oldest and largest Buddhist monuments in Asia. During this period, it remained one of the most stable and durable centres of political power and urban life in South Asia. Early evening, we visit the sacred Bodhi tree, just after the sunset when the pilgrims light “pahana” little clay lamps and incense sticks giving it a heady atmosphere. For dinner, we visit some street food stalls and try the Kottu Roti severed with spicy gravy. Accommodation: Rajarata Hotel
Ride: 19km +70M/-60M (can be extended depending in interest)
Day 4 (Sat 28 Jan 2023): Anuradhapura – Dambulla Ride through the ancient city region, dotted with temples and stupas along the old king’s route. There are lots of photographic opportunities along the route, so take it at your own pace, with a couple of local tea stops to regroup. In the late afternoon, we will visit the nearby Dambulla cave temple. Dating from the 2nd century BC it is the largest cave temple complex in Sri Lanka, adorned with 1000’s fresco’s depicting the life of Buddha.
Accommodation: Tropical Life Resort & Spa
Ride: 88 km +350M/-270M
Day 5 (Sun 29 Jan 2023): Short Ride to Sigiriya Rock Fortress The 5th-century Citadel built by King Kashyapa (477-495 AD) approached through the royal please gardens, climbing up through the boulder entrance and ascending 220 meters to Lion's Paws. The ruins of the palace on the summit are only surpassed by the magnificent aeriel views of the surrounding countryside.
Accommodation: Tropical Life Resort & Spa
Ride: 49 km +220M/-220M
Day 6 (Mon 30 Jan 2023): Dambulla to Kandy. Today we start with a 30 kilometres transfer from the hotel to avoid busy roads, starting in the foothills of the spice growing region of Sri Lanka, nutmeg and pepper plantations line the roads as they gradually rise to the start of the main climb, a 500- metre ascent, up through the Keppitigala Pass. The rewards are magnificent views and the rest of the day free day in Kandy. We’ll transfer the last 10 kilometres to avoid Kandy’s school traffic. Arriving at the Hotel for lunch, the rest of the day is free to relax and explore the town. Accommodation:
Suisse Hotel Meals:B/L/D
Ride: 46 km +800M/-420M
Day 7 (Tue 31 Jan 2023):
Rest Day in Kandy A free day to relax, but we do suggest visiting the lovely botanical gardens that boast an extraordinary range of flora. The Temple of The Tooth, the final resting place of the Sacred Tooth Relic, was once the symbol of royal power and now a holy pilgrimage site for devout Buddhists. The tooth taken from the Buddha's funeral pyre in 543 BC, is highly revered as every word the Buddha spoke, flowed over the tooth and during the Kalinga war around 320 AD, the tooth was bequeathed to Sri Lanka. It’s best to avoid the major Pooja times, especially on the weekends, it can be very crowded. Around the temple is the old quarter, which you can wander through and into town.
Accommodation: Suisse Hotel
Meals: B /- /-
Ride: 0 km
Day 8 (Wed 01 Feb 2022):
Ride to Nuwara Eliya. Our destination today is Nuwara Eliya the highest and most famous hill station situated 2000 meters above sea level, its cool climate and distinct architecture give it the nickname little England. The start of the ride is relatively flat for 18km then climbs for the next 15km (elevation gain of around 600m) before flattening out again for the following 19km. We end the ride here 52km, with a picnic lunch then transfer up to Nuwara Eliya avoiding the harder, steeper part of the climb. The rest of the day is free to enjoy the cool air.
Accommodation: The Hill Club Hotel
Ride: 52 km +1210M/-780M
Day 9 (Thu 02 Feb 2023):
Trek Horton Plains. Morning trek on Horton’s Plain to Totapolakanda Sri Lanka’s 3rd highest mountain, with great views and far less visited than the world's end drop, there are other interesting trails to explore on this strict nature reserve. The stunted mountain forest is home to several endemic bird species and sambar deer can be seen roaming on the open plains. Driving back to Nuwara Eliya with the afternoon free to explore the town. Then evening free to try some of the local restaurants.
Accommodation: The Hill Club Hotel
Ride: 0 km
Day 10 (Fri 03 Feb 2023): Ride to Ella
We start the day with a visit to the tea factory, to learn more about the tea making process and enjoy one of the finest teas from the island. We then begin a 1000 meters descent to Ella arriving for a late lunch and some free time to explore the town. Later afternoon take a scenic walk to Little Adams Peak for sunset, a rocky viewpoint that overlooks the Ella Gap. Accommodation: Oak Ray Ella Gap Hotel
Ride: 65 km +780M/-1670M
Day 11 (Sat 04 Feb 2023): Ella- Udawalawe
Spectacular ride down the Ella gap said to be one of the most beautiful roads, it’s almost pedal free for 25 kilometres! We head towards Udawalawe National Park, home to the magnificent Ceylon elephants, crocodiles, and grey languor monkeys. With a light lunch on route, we arrive early afternoon. In the late afternoon, we have a safari to Udawalawe National Park Accommodation: Grand Udawalawe Safari Resort
Ride: 102 km +410M/-1340M
Day 12 (Sun 05 Feb 2023): Udawalawe – Mirissa
As we cycle towards the southern most part of the island, we conclude our trip near Dondra Lighthouse, the tallest lighthouse in Sri Lanka. With a ceremonial beer overlooking the ocean, allowing us plenty of time to recollect on our achievement! We transfer along the busy coastal road finishing at our overnight beach hotel.
Accommodation: Mandara Mirissa Resort
Ride: 80 km +700M/-780M
Day 13 (Mon 06 Feb 2023): Mirissa Free Day
Today you will be at your leisure to enjoy the beach. Or visit the historical Galle Fort where the Portuguese arrived in 1505 and set up a trading post and later built the Black Fort to guard the harbour, which still exists today. The Dutch captured the fort in 1640 and expanded it, building ramparts and bastions to enclose the town within the walls. The British took over 1796, adding the front fortifications and enlarging the entrance. Most of the Colonial buildings are now boutique hotels and restaurants. Free day to enjoy the sights of Galle a walk around the ramparts and backstreets with your guide can reveal some of the secrets of the fort's history. Those wanting to be more active can hop on the bikes, ride to Koggala lake and end the ride at a beachside restaurant.
Accommodation: Mandara Mirissa Resort Meals:B/-/D
Ride: 45 km +250M/-250M
Day 14 (Tue 07 Feb 2023): Transfer to Colombo and Overnight Stay
Our final stop is the modern capital, Colombo. The hotel we stay in tonight is located in the heart of Colombo, along the seafront and famous for its colonial architecture. Today you can explore the town and some leisure time for shopping. On an evening stroll to Galle Face Green, you can visit small vendors who sell local street food and return to the hotel for dinner. Accommodation: Galle Face Hotel
Meals:B/-/D Ride: 0 km
Day 15 (Wed 08 Feb 2023): Departure
Free time until transfer to the airport. Meals: B /- /-
Ride: 0 km
TOTAL RIDING DISTANCE: 6311 km +5110M/-6040M
Arrival date is Wednesday January 25, 2023 starting and ending in Colombo, Sri Lanka (RML). The tour begins in the afternoon of January 25th, with a trip briefing and 5:30 PM Happy Hour at the Suriya Resort in Negombo, followed by dinner. Spice Roads will discuss the following day’s schedule.
You should fly into and out of Colombo, Sri Lanka International airport (RML). Airport transfers to the hotel will be arranged. If you plan to arrive early, SpiceRoads can assist with pre-tour hotel bookings. SpiceRoads will assign a company representative to assist the BAC riders with pre-and post- tour hotels, bike rentals, etc. Rental bike fitting will take place the morning of day 2.
BICYCLE RENTALS - Bicycle rentals are available directly through SpiceRoads and are $240-$475. Contact SpiceRoads direct - Kittisak (Sun) firstname.lastname@example.org. All of the roads are on tarmac, and it is suggested you bring your road or hybrid bikes. SpiceRoads offers road, hybrid, or E-bikes for rent. IF you rent, you should consider bringing your own clip pedals, shoes, cleats and helmets. Bringing your own bike: If you bring your own bike, be sure it is a road or hybrid bike and it is in good mechanical order with all parts necessary to maintain it during the ride. The cycle guides are trained in basic bike mechanics and first aid.
PASSPORTS AND VISAS NEEDED!
You must have a passport that is valid for a minimum of 6 months after your scheduled return. For residents of the USA using a USA passport, a visa is required to visit Sri Lanka. Visas must be obtained prior to arrival in Sri Lanka. You must have one (1) blank VISA pages in your passport. Note some passport pages do not have the word VISA stamped at the top. These pages are not acceptable. If your passport does not meet these requirements, you need to obtain a new passport prior to applying for a visa. You can apply for a visa on arrival, but it is suggested you can do this on-line - http://www.eta.gov.lk/slvisa/
For non-USA residents, you will need to research the visa requirement and obtain the appropriate visa for your country of residence prior to departure.
COST & ADMINISTRATION - The cost is $3,900 per person double occupancy plus the $100 BAC fee. The final payment of $2,000 is due September 30, 2022. The price includes 14 nights lodging, 14 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 11 dinners, 2 English speaking guides, support vehicles, RidewithGPS routes, BAC Happy Hour refreshments, cycling jersey, transport to and from the airport on first and last day, drinks and snacks while cycling. Happy Hour drinks each night - one glass of house wine or a beer, or a premium fruit. The tour price does not include:
non-refundable BAC ride registration fee
cost of optional activities
alcoholic drinks at included meals
Visa to Sri Lanka
Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary
Tips for guides, drivers, hotel’s porters
Early check-in or late check out
Any services not mentioned in the itinerary
SINGLES & SOLOS POLICY If space allows, a limited number of solo rooms may be available. The solo supplement is $995. For solo rooms, contact - Kittisak (Sun) email@example.com to make payment arrangements by October 31, 2022. It is recommended that singles who want a roommate try to find their own. However, after receipt of the initial deposit, a single without a roommate will be placed on the ride and given until (October 31 2022) to find a roommate. If they are unable to find a roommate, they will have the option to receive a full refund (minus the BAC fee and payment processing fee) or pay the ($995) solo supplement and stay on the ride. The Ride Leader will assist by attempting to match singles who apply for the ride.
CANCELLATION POLICY - The BAC ride registration fee and payment processing fee is not refundable unless the entire tour is cancelled due to participation below stated minimum requirements. Refunds of tour payments will depend upon whether a replacement rider signs up, and on costs that can be recouped. The amount refunded will be based on the principle that the tour’s remaining participants will not incur any additional cost as a result of cancellations. If the cancelling participant is replaced, a refund will be made at that time. If the cancelling participant can't be replaced, any refund will be determined after the ride and final expense report are completed. If a single participant cancels and another roommate cannot be found, in addition to other costs that cannot be recouped the cancelling roommate may also be liable for the solo supplement fee of the roommate remaining on the tour. BAC encourages members to purchase trip cancellation insurance.
For cancellations that go unfilled and without a replacement, the Spice Roads policy applies and is as follows:
Number of days prior to trip start, cancellation fee per person, if not replaced:
90+ days Administration expenses incurred*
60-89 days $1,005
45-59 days $1,675
15-44 days $2,345
0-14 days $3,350
*Bank fees and any tour costs incurred by the company as a result of the cancelation.
SIGN-UP To submit a request to join this ride use the "links" displayed above this Ride Description. When you are accepted, the Ride Leader will move you from the Waitlist to the Pending List. At this time, you will receive an email notification to login to the BAC website to sign the release of liability form and pay the non-refundable BAC ride registration fee and the initial tour deposit ($1,900 plus the $100 BAC fee) by credit card. ONCE YOU HAVE SIGNED THE RELEASE OF LIABILITY FORM AND YOUR DEPOSIT HAS BEEN PROCESSED, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List. BAC members with questions may contact the Ride Director Warner Griswold (775-843-3960) or by "clicking" the name at the top of this Ride Description.
COVID STATEMENT: All participants must be fully vaccinated including booster shots if applicable and be prepared to present vaccination documentation for viewing by Ride Leader if requested. If we still have a Covid 19 risk, we will follow all the necessary rules, and change activities as needed to remain Covid compliant, and can keep the tour as safe as possible. We will invite participants to a Zoom meeting approximately 90 days prior to the tour start date to finalize our COVID protocols. You may be asked to wear PPE in public, maintain social distance in public and limit social gathering in public according to the country’s/province’s mandate.
Here is info on what the situation is at the moment in Sri Lanka - https://www.srilanka.travel/helloagain/
RIDE PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITY Please remember that BAC Ride Leaders are volunteers, and that successful tours depend on participants providing much of their own support. Participants are expected to come to the ride well-trained, in good health and ready to accomplish the required daily riding using well-maintained bicycles. All participants should accept responsibility for a safe and enjoyable tour. We encourage you to read the ride description carefully and respond to requests from Ride Leader. While on the ride, support your Ride Leader with offers to help with various tasks such as happy hour preparation and clean-up. Please do not interfere with the ride by inviting non-participants onto any portion of the ride or tour. Please keep the Ride Leader informed of any special request you may have and respect the Ride Leader’s decisions.
You need to get compulsory COVID-19 Insurance for visiting Sri Lanka – Cost ~$12- https://portal.pionline.lk/covidinsurance/
Before participating in any BAC tour, members should review their medical coverage and assess whether what you have is sufficient. If it isn’t, you should purchase additional travel medical coverage. BAC maintains a policy that provides coverage for expenses related to medical emergencies and repatriation when members are on tours outside the US and their home country. The policy ceases to be applicable if a member makes a personal deviation (e.g., makes a side trip not related to the planned BAC tour. The insurance has limits on expenses covered for family members and only applies for 45 days following departure from home. None of the policies maintained by BAC will cover costs associated with self-quarantines that may be government mandated. Members should also ensure that vaccinations are up to date (e.g., annual influenza, tetanus, etc.). If travelling outside your home country you may wish to consult with a travel physician or nurse to ensure that the appropriate vaccinations are up to date.
Bicycle Adventure Club
PO BOX 23998 San Diego, CA 92193
Telephone (858) 715-9510 firstname.lastname@example.org