Entry from £2200

SRI-LANKA

GRAVEL ADVENTURE

1 - 9 FEBRUARY 2025

“MORE ELEPHANTS PER MILE THAN ALMOST ANY RIDE I'VE DONE IN THE UK”
Tinks
Ride Captain

An incredible escape 

Sri Lanka has the warmest welcomes, the freshest and most delicious street food, the most exotic wildlife, and the most perfect network of gravel roads for endless miles of pure joy.

Following our Pioneer event in July 2024, our 2025 Sri Lanka Gravel Adventure promises to be a trip of a lifetime that’s perfect for partners who don’t ride a bike too. 

We have honed the very best gravel routes across the island, and paired them with superb hotels to create an unforgettable week in one of the most exotic locations on the planet. Non-riding partners can choose between soaking up the Sri Lankan hospitality, exploring the breath-taking scenery across a variety of regions, or spending their free time chilling out by the pool.

Premium Hotchillee members of can enter this event using a £150 membership discount.

Price from

£2200

530KM

Gravel

5770M

Elevation

6

Days in saddle

8

Nights included

4

Fitness*

Fully
Supported

*This is based on 1 being a beginner and 5 being an expert.

530KM

Gravel

5770m

Elevation

6

Days in saddle

8

Nights included

4

Fitness*

Fully
supported

*This is based on 1 being a beginner and 5 being an expert.

SPEAK TO OUR TEAM

If you have any questions or just need some advice why not book a call with one of our team members.

ITINERARY

The below itinerary is provisional. Routes are subject to change depending on terrain and weather conditions.

Arrival day.  We’ve partnered with SriLankan Airlines to make your journey as comfortable and efficient as possible. See the flight section below for details on how to book your flights.

Expect a very warm welcome at the airport in Colombo with refreshments and a performance by local musicians and dancers. 

Then, we’ll head straight to Sigiriya and check into Sigiriya Village Resort where you can set your bike up then relax by the pool in preparation for six days of the best gravel riding on planet earth.

Sigiriya loop, to include a stop at the UNESCO listed World Heritage Site iconic fortress to climb Sigiriya. 67km, 330m. 

We’re making the most of staying at the same resort for two nights by including an evening Elephant Safari. 

Sigiriya to Kandy.  122km, 1420m. 

Today’s ride marks the first epic day on the bike, leaving the ancient ruins and lush greenery surrounding Sigiriya, you’ll pedal along winding flat gravel paths flanked by towering palms and vibrant wildlife. You’ll then ascend into the often-misty hills, where you should enjoy some welcomingly cooler temperatures as gravel tracks twist and turn.

As you approach Kandy, the gravel gives way to smoother terrain, and you’ll descend through lively streets to the lakeside hotel, or if you’re still feeling fresh then opt to arrive with a detour via the ancient sacred city of Kandy, taking in the Royal Palace and Temple of the Sacred Tooth.

Nuwara Eliya to Nanu Oya.  16.5km, 380m.

Start the day giving your legs a break with an enchanting train journey from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya, winding through the lush hills and valleys of Sri Lanka’s central highlands. You’ll board the iconic service that chugs through emerald tea plantations on terraced hillsides, offering glimpses into the timeless beauty of Sri Lanka’s interior. 

At Nuwara Eliya you’ll hop on your bike for a short ride to the hotel at Nanu Oya, with optional bonus gravel riding through tea plantations if your legs feel up to the challenge!

Nuwara Eliya to Ella, 80km, 1350m. 

This route was only partly ridden during our recce in November, so in true Pioneer fashion you’ll be shaping the route as we pedal. It’s a treasure trove of great routing options and we can’t really go wrong!

Ella is known for its excellent places to eat, and the town is a good place to explore your palette with Sri Lankan food, so this evening dinner is at leisure.

Ella to Udawalawe.  124km, 780m. 

Another day of exploring and following our front wheels, since this route was also partly ridden during our recce in November, so in true Pioneer fashion you’ll be helping make it as challenging or as scenic as the mood takes you.

Udawalawe to Galle. 120km, 1510m.

The final day of route designing and exploration. This route was also partly ridden during our recce in November, so in true Pioneer fashion you’ll be shaping the route as we pedal.

Galle has a wide choice of superb restaurants to discover, therefore dinner tonight is at leisure.

Galle – non riding day.

Join us for some early morning Whale watching from trip to Mirissa.  Then spend the rest of the day in Galle. A Unesco World Heritage Site, this historic city is a delight to explore on foot, an endlessly exotic old trading port blessed with imposing Dutch-colonial buildings, ancient mosques and churches, grand mansions and museums. Wandering its rambling lanes you’ll pass stylish cafes, quirky boutiques and impeccably restored hotels owned by local and foreign artists, writers, photographers and designers.

Or if you just want to put your feet up maybe a day at the beach and a bit of surf is more your thing, or just relax at the hotel pool.

The day is finished off with a celebration meal with your fellow pioneers, Hotchillee ride captains and crew.

Transfer from Galle to Colombo.  Flight home c.12:55, arrive local time c.19:30 UK

PRICE & ENTRY

entry (sharing)

Sharing a room (twin or double) with another rider.  Price is per person. 

Premium members £2220 (when using £150 coupon code)

Non-members £2350

  • Airport transfers
  • 8 nights accommodation in 4* and 5* hotels
  • Breakfast at hotels
  • 6 days of guided rides
  • Lunch each day en route
  • 6 evening meals included 
  • 2 days off bike at leisure
  • GPX routes
  • Welcome reception at Columbo airport
  • Elephant Safari
  • Trip to Sigiriya
  • Whale watching from Mirissa
  • Flights
  • 2 evenings dinner are at your leisure
  • Alcoholic drinks

 

entry (single room)

Single room supplement for all 8 nights. 

Premium members £2700 (when using £150 coupon code)

Non-members £2850

  • Airport transfers
  • 8 nights accommodation in 4* and 5* hotels (single room supplement)
  • Breakfast at hotels
  • 6 days of guided rides
  • Lunch each day en route
  • 6 evening meals included 
  • 2 days off bike at leisure
  • GPX routes
  • Welcome reception at Columbo airport
  • Elephant Safari
  • Trip to Sigiriya
  • Whale watching from Mirissa
  • Flights
  • 2 evenings dinner are at your leisure
  • Alcoholic drinks

 

entry (inc non riding partner)

A double room sharing with your non riding partner.

Premium members £4095 (when using £150 coupon code)

Non-members £4245

  • Airport transfers
  • 8 nights accommodation in 4* and 5* hotels
  • Breakfast at hotels
  • 6 days of guided rides
  • Non riding partner transfers on Days 1, 3, 5 & 6
  • Train journey from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya
  • Lunch each day en route for rider
  • 6 evening meals included 
  • 2 days off bike at leisure
  • GPX routes
  • Welcome reception at Columbo airport
  • Elephant Safari
  • Trip to Sigiriya
  • Whale watching from Mirissa
  • Flights
  • 2 evenings dinner are at your leisure
  • Lunches for non riding partner
  • Alcoholic drinks

 

Other Activities

There’s so much to do in Sri Lanka off the bike, making it a fantastic holiday for non-riding partners too.

Non cycling activities include:

  • Hike up Sigiriya Fortress
  • Evening Elephant Safari
  • Train journey through rice fields and tea plantations
  • Whale watching from Mirissa
  • Exploring the magical city of Galle.

Become a Hotchillee Premium member and save £150 when entering this event. Premium membership costs £8 a month with your first 30 days free. Click here for full list of benefits.

If you are already a Premium Member you can access your discount code here.

FLIGHTS

Fly from London Heathrow to Colombo.  SriLanka Airlines will be offering Hotchillee a group booking discount – more information coming soon. 

Discounted group booking on the following return flights:

21:30 Friday 31st January LHR, arrives 12:45 Saturday 1st February CMB 

13:05 Sunday 9th February CMB, arrives 20:00 Sunday 9th February LHR

Current (non discounted) return flight is £1138

ACCOMMODATION

hotels

We’ve worked hard with local experts to choose the very best hotels and resorts to ensure that every moment spent off the bike is just as memorable as the beathtaking gravel trails. We’ve also tried to limit the number of transfers required by non riding guests by basing ourselves in the same hotel for two nights at the start and end of the trip. Read more below:

1 & 2 February – Sigiriya Village Sigiriya

3 February – Mahaweli Reach Kandy

4 February – Gallaway Heights Nuwara Eliya

5 February – Flower Garden  Ella 

6 February – Grand Hotel Udawalawe

7 & 8 February – TBC Galle

Faq

  • You must be 18 years or older on 1 February 2025 to enter.
  • The course is long and a good level of fitness and endurance will be required.
  • If you are in doubt as to your fitness then we recommend you have a medical check-up before registering.

If entering before the end of October you are able to pay a deposit of £750, followed by equal monthly instalments up to 31 October 2024.

There are 3 entry options for the Pioneer

  • Entry sharing with another rider (twin or double)
  • Entry including a single room supplement for all 8 nights
  • Entry including a non riding partner
  • Airport transfers
  • Welcome reception at Colombo airport
  • 8 nights accommodation in 4* and 5* hotels (twin sharing)
  • Breakfast at hotels
  • 6 days of guided rides
  • Lunch each day en route
  • 6 evening meals included, 2 evenings at your leisure
  • 2 days off bike at leisure (Sigiriya and Galle)
  • GPX routes
  • Trip to Sigiriya
  • Elephant Safari
  • Whale watching at Mirissa

More information soon about the group booking rate offered.

We recommend a Gravel bike or a Mountain bike with off-road tyres at least 38mm wide and set up tubeless.

Electric off-road bikes are also welcome. However, considering the long days of riding, you’ll need to ensure you have adequate range, and that your battery is detachable for charging in your hotel room overnight.

If considering an e-bike please check with SriLankan Airlines what their rules are regarding travel and batteries.

This is a fully supported off-road event. To minimise environmental impact to the beautiful trails, we don’t mark the route. Instead we issue GPX files to riders, and have incredible Ride Captains to show you the way. 

We expect to mainly ride together. The group will naturally split on occasions due to different speeds and abilities, however we have Hotchillee ride captains with us, so you’ll never be on your own.

February is one of the best times to visit the island nation. Average temperatures range from 24°C to 32°C (75.2°F to 89.6°F).  So expect plenty of sunny days out on the trails. It will be humid so we will start the days early to escape the hottest parts of the day and to ensure you are back in plenty of time to enjoy the hotel pool and spas.

 

All the Hotchillee ride captains selected for this event have good basic mechanical skills. We will also have a local mechanic/guide following the group on a motorbike. However you do need to be prepared to be self sufficient on this trip and ensure you have the necessary equipment with you.

Yes there will be regular water stops on the routes each day and a lunch/feed stop. This will be mainly local street food. The support vans will be strategically located with supplies of water, fruit and bars.

We recommend you bring your own bike for this event. Hire bikes are not easy to source currently in Sri Lanka.

As well as enough cycling kit, we recommend that you bring the following as they are difficult to source locally.

  • Any spares specific to your bike, like a derailleur hanger
  • Tubes, inflators, pump, plugs, patches
  • Allen keys, with chain breaker and spare link
  • Hydration tablets

Evening meals take place at the hotels each evening with the exception of the evening in Elle and the first evening in Galle where dinner is at leisure.

If Hotchillee cancels the event for any reason not listed in the conditions of sale, your entry fee is fully refundable.

If the event is postponed due to COVID-19, your entry will automatically be transferred to the new date. If you can’t make the new dates, you’ll receive a credit to use against any other Hotchillee multi-day event. The credit expires on 1 February 2026. 

If for any reason you need to cancel your entry there are several options available: 

  1. You are able to nominate a substitute rider for your entry (up to 60 days before the event start date).
  2. You may defer your entry as a credit towards another Hotchillee event in the same or following calendar year (up to 12 weeks before the event start date).
  3. You are entitled to the following refund on your entry:
  • 17 Weeks + before the Event start date: 66% refund of the full entry fee paid including any extra services and upgrades
  • 13-16 weeks before the Event start date: 33% refund of the full entry fee paid including any extra services and upgrades
  • 0-12 weeks before the Event start date: 0% refund of the full entry fee paid including any extra services and upgrades

Tinks once did 100 laps of Regent’s park in London. The proximity to London Zoo was such that he may or may not have passed an unknown quantity of elephants several times. He has added the “almost” caveat to his quote in order to ensure the kind of accuracy and fairness you would expect from a Hotchillee Ride Captain.

Let's prepare together

Hotchillee App

From the point you register chat directly with fellow participants, the Hotchillee team, and industry experts on dedicated event groups on the Hotchillee companion app.

SPEAK TO OUR TEAM

If you have any questions or just need some advice why not book a call with one of our team members.