How to get to Sri Lanka

By | May 4, 2022


Sri Lanka is a country in Asia according to hyperrestaurant. A teardrop shaped island in the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a country rich in cultural and natural treasures. The Indian, Portuguese, Dutch and British colonial powers left their mark on Sri Lanka and provided a fascinating mix of historic towns, monuments and impressive colonial architecture. But beaches lined with palm trees are always nearby, and inland luscious green mountain slopes beckon. In Sri Lanka, it quickly becomes clear why Marco Polo described the island as one of the most beautiful in the world. Sri Lanka is always good for unexpected but enchanting surprises, be it the elephant,

Getting there

Arriving by plane

SriLankan Airlines (UL), Sri Lanka’s national airline, connects Frankfurt/M. twice a week. non-stop with Colombo. Feeder flights to Frankfurt/M. are possible from Vienna and Zurich with Lufthansa (LH) and the respective national airlines Austrian Airlines (OS) and Swiss (LX). SriLankan Airlines (UL) also flies direct to Colombo several times a week from London and Paris. Edelweiss Air (WK) offers non-stop flights from Zurich to Colombo. Emirates (EK) flies from Geneva and Zurich via Dubai to Colombo.

Flight times

Frankfurt/M. – Colombo: 10 hours (non-stop); Vienna – Colombo: 13 hours; Zurich – Colombo: 11 hours (non-stop).

Departure fee


Arrival by ship

Numerous cargo, cruise and passenger lines call at the international ports of Colombo and Galle.

Cruise ships

Cunard, Phoenix and AIDA also have Sri Lanka as a stopover on their world cruises starting in Hamburg and Kiel. Coming from other European ports, cruise operators such as MSC, Costa, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Phoenix also dock in the port of Colombo.


Traveling by plane

FitsAir (8D) and Cinnamon Air (C7) operate both scheduled and charter flights to Sri Lanka from Colombo. With the tour operator Simplifly, tours throughout the country, including flights and transfers to places of tourist interest, can be booked.

Traveling by car/bus

The widely ramified road network in Sri Lanka has a total length of 114,093 km and reaches every town in the country.

Right-hand traffic/left-hand traffic


Condition of the roads

Most roads around Colombo are paved. Roads not marked ‘A’ on road maps are in poor condition. Traveling without a local driver who is familiar with the area is strongly discouraged.

Car rental

Rental cars can be booked and picked up in Colombo at the airport and in the city. Rental cars are also available in other larger cities. Drivers must be at least 18 years old. Due to the road conditions, it is advisable to hire a car with a driver.


Taxis are available in the cities; they are equipped with taximeters. So-called tuk-tuks, 3-wheeled vehicles with a back seat for 3 people behind the driver, are cheaper.


Bicycle and motorbike rentals are mainly found in Colombo and Negombo. Cycling is not advisable in island towns, but is becoming increasingly popular in rural areas.


Sri Lanka Transport Board government buses operate from Colombo to virtually anywhere in the country. Long-distance and express buses stop at the bus stations in larger towns, while short-distance buses stop at every bus stop. In addition to the state buses, there are also numerous private bus companies. Private buses are more often equipped with air conditioning and are more comfortable than state ones.


Traffic regulations: – Helmets are compulsory for motorcyclists and moped drivers. Speed ‚Äč‚Äčlimit: – in built-up areas: 50 km/h; – in Colombo: 40 km/h; – extra-urban: 70 km/h.

Roadside Assistance

The ADAC foreign emergency call offers ADAC members and holders of ADAC foreign health and accident insurance comprehensive assistance in the event of vehicle breakdowns, traffic accidents, loss of documents and money, and medical emergencies. The emergency number is available around the clock; in the event of damage to the vehicle: Tel. +49 (0)89 22 22 22, in the event of illness: +49 (0)89 76 76 76. In the event of breakdowns or accidents with the rental car, the car rental company should be contacted first.


In addition to the national driver’s license, the international driver’s license is required. This must be presented to the Automobile Association of Ceylon (AAC) in Colombo in order to have a so-called “Recognition Permit” issued for the recognition of the driver’s license. For a surcharge, car rental companies often offer support with the application process.

Traveling in the city

The Central Transport Board operates an extensive bus network in Colombo; private buses and minibuses are also used. The fare is paid to the conductor. The buses are often overcrowded. Taxis, identified by yellow roofs, are also available.

Locally on the way by train

Sri Lanka Railways, the country’s national railway company, operates a well-developed railway network covering 1,447 kilometers, on which most of the larger towns in the island state can be reached. Some trains have 1st class, air conditioning and dining cars. Advance booking is recommended. Express trains and intercity trains operate on the main routes. Trains run from Colombo to the main tourist areas. The Viceroy Special is the only passenger steam train in Sri Lanka. It runs on the island state’s various railway lines, including from Colombo to Kandy and the tea plantations in the highlands, along the west coast to the beach hotels or to the old port city of Galle. The train has a stylish restaurant.

How to get to Sri Lanka