Bus to Sigiriya from Dambulla bus stand....
Dambulla: From the city bus stand at Trincomalee, I took a bus to Dambulla which is around 3 hours away....
Top Places To Visit 3 Spots
Sigiriya Rock Fortress
It was an ordeal to climb the 1200 steps in the scorching heat (up and down) but it was definitely worth the pain :), We hired a guide who charged us Rs 2500 (Srilankan rupees), we thought it was expensive but then we really didnt have a choice. There is no point in climbing all the way to the top without understanding the significance of every part of the fortress
Dambulla Cave Temple
Day 3: Dambulla and Sigiriya are part of Srilanka's cultural triangle which are situated approximately 80 km north of Kandy. Buses ply frequently to Dambulla which takes approximately 3 hrs from Kandy. The Golden temple and Rock cut caves of Dambulla are located in the Kandy road approx 2 km from Dambulla bus station. So you can ask the driver to drop you directly nearby the entrance.
But keep in mind, if you travel from Dambulla, you have to take one of the buses which are going from Colombo to Malee. No bus service was available originating from Dambulla when I travelled. And most likely, you'll not get a place to sit immediately after boarding the bus. For Solo Women backpackers - I travelled in shorts and it was comfortable in the bus. I didn't face any incident where people teased me or anything. By the time I reached Malee town, it was 1 pm (I started at 8 from Dambulla and this includes a bus repair on the mid way) and I saw the small harbours with pristine blue water. They were picture perfect. I was almost thinking this is it, nothing can beat this in such a place. I took a public bus from Malee bus station to Upuveli (Neelaveli is further and apparently more expensive). It took me a while to look for the hotels but I found few. It's a cluster of 8-9 shacks/hotels/resorts in Upuveli or may be a bit more. And you'll find all options starting from $7 (for a private room with bathroom No AC) to $$$ in big resorts, along with mid ranged hotels with pool and decorated bar in $40-$50. I chose the $7 one and that place happened to be the best bar at nights! French Hostel is what I remember the name was. Now you got there, there are plenty of things to do. Long bike rides, in empty roads, drenching in short and quick rains, the mountain temples, feeding the monkeys, trip to Nilaveli, morning breakfasts in near by villages are possible with a rented bike. I paid 250 SL Rupee, I had to keep my passport with the lady as deposit. I did both scuba and snorkelling, rate varies based on time. Dolphin watching and fishing is also possible. No whale watching in Malee, it happens in Merissa. Food is amazing, in all the restaurants, I chose typical SL food, with fish costing around $1.5 every meal. I also went to Nilaveli, for one evening. It is beautiful but expensive than Upuveli. And somewhere I found Upuveli more serene, calm and less crowded. There are also small beaches here and there in the city. Take your bike and just ride. Dip in the ocean and come back. On the way get into some temple, pose with kids, get fruits as blessings and ride on.