In my original itinerary for Sri Lanka, I'd thought I'd have to head north from Kandy and spend a night or two in Dambulla or Sigiriya to see the cultural sites up there. But as soon as I arrived at my hostel in Kandy, the Canadian girl running the place assured me that seeing both could be done in a single day. Since this day trip is not detailed in either the Lonely Planet or online anywhere, I thought I'd spell out how you can make this trip.
1. Wake up early. Crazy early!
OK, so to my parents, this would not be early. But to me and all the other normal people on the planet, you'll have to rouse yourself at the ungodly hour of 6:30 or so as you'll want to be at the bus station between 7 and 7:30 and on a bus by no later than 8 am.