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Travelmarvel

Sri Lanka and Lower Ganges Cruise

Kolkata to Negombo

Trip Code: TINRS22
22 Days
47 Meals
  • Travel & Accommodation
  • Map & Itinerary
  • Similar Trips

Trip Inclusions

  • 14 nights in premium accommodation
  • Seven nights cruising the Lower Ganges
  • The services of a Travelmarvel Tour Director and Cruise Director
  • 47 meals - 21 breakfasts, 12 lunches and 14 dinners
  • All meals plus local soft drinks, beers and spirits are included during your cruise
  • Regional wines are available with lunch and dinner on board
  • Airport transfers, port charges, tipping, internal flights and porterage

Travel & Accommodation

Children of India playing soccer on the banks of the Ganges

Cruise the Lower Ganges

From Farakka to Kolkata, experience India in a unique way as you cruise the waters of the Lower Ganges.

A big cat of Yala National Park resting in the shade

Keep a Lookout For Leopards

Head out on a morning leopard safari in Yala National Park with an experienced guide.

Large rock with blue sky in background and vegetation in foreground, Sri Lanka

Sigiriya's Ancient Fortress

Visit the World Heritage-listed Sigiriya Rock and explore its impressive ancient fortress.

Map & Itinerary

Trip Notes

  • Itinerary and inclusions are subject to change
  • Prices include transfers, tipping, porterage and port charges
  • Low or high water levels may cause disruption to cruising
  • Flights to depart Negombo after 12.30am on day 23, after the tour
  • Prices are for land/cruise/rail and specified internal flights only. Flights not specified are not included
Asia Map TINRS22 2019 revised
Kolkata to Negombo

Designed exclusively for our guests

Insider Experience

Enjoy an included special or unique excursion or event

Insider Experience

Enjoy an indulgent stay at the Taj Bengal Hotel in Kolkata


Be met on arrival at the airport.

Stay: Two Nights, Kolkata, Taj Bengal

Today you will embark on a sightseeing tour to take in some of Kolkata’s famous landmarks, including the vibrant Mullik Ghat Flower Market. Other highlights include the Howrah Bridge and ‘Nirmal Hriday”, most commonly known as Mother Teresa’s House. Later this evening, get to know your fellow travellers at a Welcome Dinner.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

This morning, transfer to your river ship to begin your relaxing seven-night cruise along the Lower Ganges. Sail past the old Danish colony of Serampore before arriving in the city of Barrackpore, once a place of great significance during the British Raj. Here, walk through the city’s cantonment and get a better understanding of India’s journey from colonialism to independence. Highlights include the Semaphore Tower, Flagstaff House, Government House and the Temple of Fame.

Stay: Seven Nights, Lower Ganges River, RV Rajmahal

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Cruise to the former French colony of Chandannagar and spend some time exploring this small historical town. See the beautiful 18th-century French church before visiting the Dupleix’s House, once home to the former Governor-General of French India. Continue upstream, passing the old Dutch settlement of Chinsura. Stop in Hooghly and view the magnificent Muslim shrine of Imambara, which was built to provide employment to the citizens of Lucknow during a tragic famine.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Insider Experience

After breakfast, embark on a traditional rickshaw ride through the town of Kalna and take in all its main sights.


Named for the Hindu goddess Kali and often referred to as ‘Temple Town’, Kalna is famous for its iconic terracotta temples. See the eye-catching Nava Kailash, otherwise known as 108 Shiv Mandirs. This incredible structure was built in 1788 and is home to a number of remarkable terracotta sculptures. Continue on through the countryside to Mayapur. Believed to be the birthplace of an important Hindu saint, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Mayapur is a place of sacred significance for followers of the Hindu faith. Here you’ll see the ISKCON temple, which dominates the town’s skyline. Visited by over a million devotees a year, it is the headquarters of the Hare Krishna movement.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Insider Experience

See first-hand how the Matiari locals beat brass to make water pots and other utensils, while learning the heritage behind the workmanship.


Today you will explore the charming riverside village of Matiari. Later, pay a visit to the iconic battlefield of Plassey. It was here in 1757 that Commander-in-Chief of British India Robert Clive defeated Siraj-ud-Daulah and forever changed the course of Indian history.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Insider Experience

Visit the remarkable Hazarduari Palace dominates the Murshidabad waterfront and be wowed by its impressive eight galleries, each containing exquisite collections of china, weapons and art.


A day of exploring Murshidabad begins with a trip to the Khushbagh garden, which translates to the Garden of Happiness. Wander through the peaceful Mughal-style gardens and discover what is believed to be the final resting place of the last independent Nawab of Bengal and his family. Later, see the great Katra Mosque before driving out to visit the Nashipara and Kathgola Palaces, two beautiful 18th-century buildings steeped in history.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

This morning you’ll get to experience rural India at its most idyllic with a stroll through the fields of Baranagar. Here you’ll visit three gorgeous miniature terracotta temples before continuing up the Lower Ganges. Take in the stunning views as the river winds its way along banks lined with picturesque mango orchards and mustard fields. This evening you’ll moor close to the Farakka Barrage.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Today you’ll disembark the ship and go on a full-day excursion to the fascinating city of Gaur. Now in ruins, Gaur was once the capital of the Muslim Nawabs. The city is littered with ancient monuments and the remains of mosques. Rejoin the ship above the Farakka lock gate and make the most of your last evening on board the RV Rajmahal.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Disembark the ship early this morning and transfer by local train to Kolkata. Enjoy lunch on arrival before paying a visit to the poignant Victoria Memorial, an intricate marble building and iconic symbol of the British Raj. Built in memory of Queen Victoria to celebrate her 25 years of rule over India, the memorial houses a fine collection of artwork and is surrounded by lush green gardens. Later, head to St Paul’s Cathedral, a religious site and architectural marvel completed in 1847. This evening you’ll enjoy a delicious final dinner with your fellow travellers at Sonargaon Restaurant.

Stay: Kolkata, Taj Bengal

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Fly from India to Sri Lanka where you’ll be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel.

Stay: Negombo, Jetwing Lagoon

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Insider Experience

Overlook the rock fortress during your stay at Sigiriya Jungles.


Today, venture to the World Heritage-listed Dambulla Cave Temple. Home to over 150 incredible Buddha paintings and statues, Dambulla is the largest and most well preserved cave-temple complex in Sri Lanka. Explore the five sanctuaries, each containing ornate statues and ancient art relating to the life of Buddha. Later this afternoon, travel on to your hotel where you’ll enjoy a Welcome Dinner with your fellow travellers.

Stay: Three Nights, Sigiriya Jungles

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

This morning visit the World Heritage-listed ancient rock fortress of Sigiriya. Rising 200 metres above the central plains, this spectacular geological formation was once home to an ancient civilisation. If you’re feeling active, climb the open staircases to the top of Sigiriya and take in the impressive views at its summit. Alternatively, visit the Sigiriya Museum and learn more about the cultural significance behind the iconic rock mass. Take a guided tour of the area before returning to your hotel. The afternoon is yours to spend at leisure.

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Today after breakfast, head to the World Heritage site of Polonnaruwa for a tour of its ancient city. Once a prosperous religious centre, it was the second capital of Sri Lanka after the destruction of Anuradhapura in 993. Explore the fascinating ruins and discover a world of archaeological treasures, including beautiful Buddha statues, impressive stupas and intricately carved Hindu sculptures. Have lunch in Polonnaruwa before returning to the hotel. This afternoon, you may wish to embark on a safari to see the herds of elephants at Minneriya National Park.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Insider Experience

Nestled in the picturesque hilltops of Kandy, Amaya Hills is a breathtaking retreat that looks out onto the lush green mountains of Hanthana. With its design inspired by a traditional Kandyan palace, experience a tasteful mingling of Kandyan culture with fabulous contemporary trimmings.


This morning travel from Sigiriya to the historic city of Kandy, the last capital from the ancient kings’ era of Sri Lanka. Here you’ll depart on a guided tour of Kandy’s major sights, learning more about its intriguing history and culture. See the World Heritage-listed Temple of the Tooth, which houses one of Buddhism’s most sacred relics – the tooth of Buddha. Later this evening, experience the energy of a traditional Sri Lankan cultural performance before returning to your hotel.

Stay: Two Nights, Kandy, Amaya Hills

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Today you will visit the exquisite Royal Botanical Gardens of Peradeniya. Home to over 4,000 species of exotic flora and fauna, the gardens are renowned for their collection of beautiful orchids. The rest of the day is yours to spend as you wish. You might choose to set out on an optional trip to the sustainable farm at Tamarind Garden in the Digana country side.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Today transfer to Nuwara Eliya with a stop en route at a tea plantation and factory. Enjoy lunch in Nuwara Eliya before an afternoon tour. Relax in your hotel before dinner this evening.

Stay: Nuwara Eliya, Araliya Green Hills Hotel

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Insider Experience

Nestled amid splendid vegetation, enjoy both style and privacy at the premium Jetwing Yala.


After breakfast transfer to Nanu Oya Railway station for a scenic trail rail through the Hill country to Ella. Arrive in Ella in time for lunch. Later, travel to Yala where you’ll check-in to your hotel.

Stay: Two Nights, Jetwing Yala

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Board a Jeep and venture out on a morning safari in Yala National Park. The park is home to over 32 species of mammals including elephants, crocodiles and sloth bears. Its star attraction however is the spectacular Sri Lankan leopard. Spend the afternoon at your leisure, or head out on an optional afternoon safari for a chance to see more of the park’s wonderful wildlife.

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Insider Experience

Enroute to Galle, stop in at the Udawalawe Elephant Transit Home, where displaced baby elephants are cared for and rehabilitated.


Travel to Galle, a fortified port city steeped in history. Here you’ll depart on a tour and see many of its major landmarks. Admire the Dutch-colonial architecture and marvel at the ancient mosques, churches and grand mansions of this World Heritage-listed city. Continue to your beachside hotel in Ahungalla.

Stay: Two Nights, Heritance Ahungalla

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Travel to the Lunuganga Estate this morning. One of Sri Lanka’s most renowned architects, Geoffrey Bawa, spent over 40 years transforming an abandoned cinnamon plantation into what is now a beautifully landscaped estate surrounded by idyllic gardens. The afternoon is free for you to enjoy at your relaxing beachfront hotel.

Daily :
  • Breakfast

After a morning at leisure, venture to the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, home to diverse races, religions and cultures. Go on a guided tour of the city and see many of its major sights. This evening, enjoy a special Farewell Dinner at Lagoon Seafood Restaurant before being transferred to the airport for your evening flight home.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Everything was wonderful. There were great sight seeing trips and the guides were very knowledgeable.