Tips and recommendations for healthy travel to top destinations
Learn more about your flu vaccine options
Learn more about the travel visa requirements for top destinations
Sri Lanka is a gorgeous tropical island full of exotic flora and fauna. Its mountainous inner country has stunning vistas and panoramic views.
Its popularity in tourism is due to its versatility. For the outdoor adventurer, Sri Lanka offers endless natural beauty. For the cultural tourist, there are delicious local dishes and historical sites to explore.
Yes, some vaccines are recommended or required for Sri Lanka. The CDC and WHO recommend the following vaccines for Sri Lanka: typhoid, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, rabies, Japanese encephalitis, and influenza.
Sri Lanka may also need vaccinations for entry. Travelers who have recently visited countries with yellow fever or cholera will need to have proof of immunizations.
Mosquito-borne diseases, such as dengue fever and chikungunya, are present in Sri Lanka. Travelers should do their best to avoid mosquito bites to prevent these diseases.
In the capital city of Colombo, there are six hospitals, including four with emergency trauma care. But, outside of Colombo, medical care can be more difficult to get. You should bring any necessary special medication with you.
See our vaccinations page to learn more about these infections and vaccines. Ready to protect yourself? Book your travel health appointment today by calling or schedule online now.
Yes, a passport and visa are required for visiting Sri Lanka. A visa, or Electronic Travel Authorization, must be obtained before arrival. These are generally granted for up to 30 days.
You should have a return ticket and proof of sufficient funds to cover your expenses in Sri Lanka. You will also need a passport with both six months’ validity from your expected departure date from Sri Lanka, and one blank page for the entry stamp.
For more information, see our Sri Lanka visa page. Or contact a Passport Health Passport and Visa specialist by calling 1-844-366-8472 or by filling out our online form.
Sri Lanka is a tropical country that generally has a warm and humid climate. The coastal areas are often warmer and more humid. Temperatures in the upland middle of the country can be a bit cooler, though still fairly warm.
Sri Lanka experiences monsoon seasons, but different regions are affected at different times. The northern and eastern regions of the country experience monsoons from October to January. The southern and western areas are affected from May to September.
The best time to travel to the country is during a dry season in the area you plan to visit. Because monsoon seasons differ in different areas, Sri Lanka can be visited year-round depending on where you plan to stay.
Traveling to Sri Lanka entails some safety risks. Crime in the country is common. Although most violent crime is not directed at foreigners, reports of assault and harassment are increasing. Travel in pairs or groups whenever possible to reduce the likelihood of harassment. Petty crime is also common, and travelers should always be aware of their belongings.
Protests and demonstrations are common in Sri Lanka, especially in Colombo. While most protests began peacefully, violence is possible. The best course is to avoid demonstrations and other large gatherings of people.
The northern areas of Sri Lanka have a military presence and unexploded landmines. When traveling in the north, stay on main, heavily traveled roads. Do not wander through forests or fields, and avoid any areas roped off for clearing landmines.
A few hours’ drive upcountry from the southern coast lies the Udawalawe National Park. This sanctuary for wild animals was established in 1972. This park is a haven for dozens of different species, including the Sri Lankan elephant.
The Sri Lankan elephant, one of three subspecies of the Asian elephant, is an endangered elephant native to Sri Lanka. Visitors to the Udawalawe National Park have a chance to see this rare and beautiful animal up close. If you visit the park’s Elephant Orphanage, you may even be able to assist with feeding or bathing one.
Many tour operators offer half-day or full-day safaris. Accommodation are available within the park itself for easy access.
For the best experience in Sri Lanka, you should pack the following:
Before traveling to Sri Lanka, all U.S. citizens are advised to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program to share your travel plans with the relevant embassy and to receive updates about any emergencies that may interfere with your travel plans.
The U.S. Embassy in Sri Lanka is located in Colombo, the country’s capital. Its address and contact information are as follows:
U.S. Embassy Colombo
210 Galle Road,
Telephone: +(94) (11) 249-8500
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(94) (11) 249-8888
Fax: +(94) (11) 249-8590
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