Getting Around Sri Lanka : Transport Tips

Sri Lanka, a small island filled with spectacular sceneries and there are plenty of things to do. However, sometimes getting around Sri Lanka can be frustratingly time-consuming experience. So it’s better to know about travelling options that are available to travel around this country. Taking public transport in any country is an easy method if it’s a long distance journey. In addition it’s extremely cheap to use and quite comfortable too.


Buses are the staple mode of transport in Sri Lanka. There are two main types of buses – public Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) buses and private buses. State or Government run buses tend to be painted red on the outside, while the privately owned buses can appear in other colors such as blue, pink or green. Private buses contain more seats when comparing with public buses.

The fare for either bus is about the same. Those heading to the south coast from Colombo have the option of travelling via the Southern Expressway on the specially-assigned highway buses. These buses run direct from one city until the destination and are much more comfortable for those heading to Galle, Mirissa or even Hambantota.


Traveling by train is one of the best ways to explore Sri Lanka. The most scenic train routes in Sri Lanka include Kandy to Ella and Colombo to Galle. The train journey to ‘Up Country’, offers the best of the country’s famously photogenic landscapes.

There are three train classes: first, second and third class. You can make reservations for all classes up to 30 days before departure. Train tickets start from $1. You can check for more information at the stations or visit the website Your best choice is to buy online train tickets for all train destinations in Sri Lanka at 12Go Asia. 12Go Asia is a reliable travel agency where you can buy train tickets, book taxis and buy bus ticket not only for Sri Lanka but for the whole of Southeast Asia.

Tuk-Tuk & Taxi

Tuk-tuks primarily called as three-wheelers is a very common mode of transportation in Sri Lanka. You will see tuk-tuks all over the country. A few of them are metered taxis (mostly in the capital Colombo). Moreover there are some taxi services called Uber and Pick Me. You can request a taxi or three-wheeler via these ride-sharing apps. Routing through the streets of Colombo in a tuk tuk, is probably the most convenient ways of getting around.


Long-distance cycling is best left for the north and east of the country, where roads are quieter Also, you can escape with the heavy traffic on roads in Sri Lanka. Cycling around historic areas such as Anuradhapura and Sigiriya will offer different experience for your journey.

Domestic Flights

Domestic flights are not a very common transportation in the island. There are a few service providers that offer this opportunity of travelling from a city to another in Sri Lanka by flight. One of the top leading providers is Cinnamon Air which connects with Bandaranaike International Airport, near Colombo with a number of domestic destinations including Batticaloa, Jaffna, Kandy and Sigiriya. Feel free to check out their website for more information.

Finally, we should need to make sure that each of these modes of transportation has its own pros and cons. It may vary with the destination, budget and other concerns. However a well-planned trip would take you to the right place, at the right time!

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