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UNAWATUNA

The scenic coastal village of Unawatuna is located about 5 km south of Galle town. This enchanting stretch of beach is much sought after for its naturally protected ocean waters and beaches.

Due to the excellent swimming and snorkeling conditions, and the lovely golden sandy beaches, Unawatuna is generally a hip and happening beach location and the area is dotted with various eateries and lodging options which complement the lively atmosphere of the beach.The coral reef which protects the beach is an interesting exploration for snorkelers and scuba divers. The shallow calm waters are ideal for swimming. The stretch of beach being popular throughout the year has converted the area into a very attractive beach resort.

KALPITIYA

The scenic coastal village of Unawatuna is located about 5 km south of Galle town. This enchanting stretch of beach is much sought after for its naturally protected ocean waters and beaches.

Located on the western coast of Sri Lanka and about 150 km north of Colombo, Kalpitiya is a peninsular which lies between the Puttalam lagoon and the Indian Ocean. This beautiful stretch of coast is made up of mangrove swamps, salt pans, flat plains and sandy beaches.

A nature lover’s paradise the biggest attraction here is the Bar Reef, a coral reef which boasts a biodiversity which cannot be found anywhere else in the waters around the Indian Sub-continent. The reef complex stretches from the northern tip of the peninsular up to the islands located right between the Gulf of Mannar and the Portugal Bay. This pristine coral reef, which is a marine sanctuary, is home to 283 species of marine life and 156 species of coral. The Kalpitiya peninsular is dotted with small fishing villages providing an enchanting setting for any holiday maker. The main town of Kalpitiya shows signs of the colonial past with attractions such as the St Peter`s Kerk Church and the Dutch Fort. And for those who are not keen on diving to explore the reef, boat rides can be arranged to explore the interesting coastline and also for watching whales and dolphins that make the ocean waters in the area their home.

KALKUDAH

Kalukudah like its neighbor Passikudah is a popular stretch of beach in the East Coast of Sri Lanka. It is about an eight hour drive from the capital Colombo and comes within the Batticaloa region.

The area is steadily developing as a tourist destination with more and more guesthouses and hotels coming up. The area is a good destination for families as the waters are safe for swimming and snorkeling. Enter the world of tropical fish and awe inspiring coral reefs and enjoy nature`s wonders at your leisure. Due to the calm waters it is not really suitable for surfing but is the ideal sport for those looking to enjoy some beach-side relaxation. And at present as it is not overcrowded visitors can enjoy a secluded holiday soaking up the warm sunshine and cooling off in the clear ocean waters. With more and more facilities being offered, Kalkudah is an amazing destination worth visiting.

AMBALANGODA

Ambalangoda is sometimes overlooked by visitors on their way to the more popular beach resort of Hkkaduwa. However, Ambalangoda has a quiet appeal to it with a genuine village feel.

The people will welcome you with curiosity and warmth. Ambalangoda is very famous for its traditional mask making and it is fascinating to watch these master crafters at work. Other attractions of Ambalangoda include beautifully carved wooden doors, lintels and screens and hand woven cotton. If you are lucky you can witness an authentic devil dance, performed to ward off evil spirits. It is a spiritual experience you will appreciate having. Located on the South West coast Amabangoda has miles of un-crowded beaches and quaint shops including antique stores and a bustling fish market that are sure to keep you occupied and pleasantly entertained.

MNILAVELI

Nilavali is in the Trincomalee district and is a stretch of beach that truly makes you believe that heaven is a place on earth. Imagine warm golden soft sand stretching for miles with pure blue water gently lapping the beach, a sight that calms the mind and soul.

This can be your reality when you visit the area of Nilaveli and if you want some adventure try your hand at diving or snorkeling. The area provides the perfect conditions for these activities while also allowing you a glimpse into the treasures of the undersea world. Visit Pigeon Island for a proper getaway as you can scramble along the rocks or snorkel to take in the colourful fish. Emerging from the after effects of the civil strife, the Trincomalee district as a whole is now developed and rapidly gaining popularity as a tourist hot spot. With the development in infrastructure it is easy to find Nilaveli accommodation to suit your budget and needs.

BERUWALA

Located on the southwestern coast of Sri Lanka this charming little coastal town was the first mooring settlement on the Island. And even though it is located right next to two buzzing beach resorts, Bentota and Aluthgama, Beruwala has maintained its quaint old fishing village charm.

The tranquil setting of this town is enhanced by the morning buzz of the arrival of fishing boats and the busy fishermen mooring their colourful boats before comparing their night`s catch. The town centre of Beruwala is busy with commercial activities. And in contrast the surrounding beach provides the ideal setting for a holiday. The water is ideal for swimming and the lovely ocean breeze throughout the day makes it one of the best stretches of beach in Sri Lanka.

KALUTARA

Located on the southwestern coast of Sri Lanka this charming little coastal town was the first mooring settlement on the Island. And even though it is located right next to two buzzing beach resorts, Bentota and Aluthgama, Beruwala has maintained its quaint old fishing village charm.

The tranquil setting of this town is enhanced by the morning buzz of the arrival of fishing boats and the busy fishermen mooring their colourful boats before comparing their night`s catch. The town centre of Beruwala is busy with commercial activities. And in contrast the surrounding beach provides the ideal setting for a holiday. The water is ideal for swimming and the lovely ocean breeze throughout the day makes it one of the best stretches of beach in Sri Lanka.

HAMBANTOTA

Located on the southwestern coast of Sri Lanka this charming little coastal town was the first mooring settlement on the Island. And even though it is located right next to two buzzing beach resorts, Bentota and Aluthgama, Beruwala has maintained its quaint old fishing village charm.

The tranquil setting of this town is enhanced by the morning buzz of the arrival of fishing boats and the busy fishermen mooring their colourful boats before comparing their night`s catch. The town centre of Beruwala is busy with commercial activities. And in contrast the surrounding beach provides the ideal setting for a holiday. The water is ideal for swimming and the lovely ocean breeze throughout the day makes it one of the best stretches of beach in Sri Lanka.

CHILAW

Chilaw is a seaside town located in the west coast of Sri Lanka. It is home to a breathtakingly beautiful lagoon while in 1927 Mahatma Gandhi actually stayed in Chilaw.

Nowadays hotels in Chilaw are easily available which is why more people travel to this coastal fishing town. It is famous for crabs and coconuts while the family of Corea have played an important role in its history. The Munneswaram Hindu Temple is an interesting place to visit. Chilaw is filled with vast coconut estates with the blue ocean in the background. Accommodation in Chilaw comes in a variety of options so that you can pick a place that best suits your budget. Chilaw is a good destination from which to enjoy an easy paced holiday that does not involve massive crowds but instead loads of sun and sand. It is easy to travel to Negombo while a little further travel will take you towards Anuradhapura. So take time to experience Chilaw during your visit to Sri Lanka.

TRINCOMALEE

The port city of Trincomalee is located on the eastern coast of the Island. Since 543 BC, the natural deep-water harbor of Trincomalee, then known as Gokanna, had managed to attract sailors and traders from all over the world.

Being one of the finest natural harbours in the world, it had also been a much sought after strong-point by the Dutch, Portuguese and the British during the colonial rule, and also a significant port during the WWII.Today the main attractions in Trincomalee are its beautiful Koddiyar Bay, the vast China Bay, and the interesting rocky peninsular where the main town is located. Due to the changing terrain in the area the ocean waters afford the most amazing hues of blue, and the glorious white beaches around the area are unspoiled and scenic.The most enchanting stretches of beaches are located a little further up north. Uppuveli, 6 km, and Nilaweli, 16 km from the town are the best areas for swimming and snorkeling. The shallow seas around this area are ideal for a lazy dip and soaking in the sun. For the adventure lover the area also affords a couple of interesting underwater wrecks. For those keen on sightseeing the town boasts several interesting sites. The Swami Rock and the Koneswara Temple, one of the oldest Hindu Temples in Sri Lanka, are located on a sheer rocky outcrop which requires a climb through the Old Dutch Fort.

PASSIKUDA

Passikuda is along the east coast of Sri Lanka in the district of Batticaloa. The east coast of Sri Lanka is slowly gaining repute as an idyllic beach holiday destination after years of being inaccessible due to the civil conflict that rocked Sri Lanka.

With the end of the conflict Sri Lanka has gained much popularity as a paradise holiday location with the infra structure in the East coast being developed to cater to visitor needs. With Palmyra trees and coconut trees and the clear blue waters of the Passikuda Bay it is no wonder visitors feel as though they have travelled to paradise.The Passikuda Bay has shallow waters that make it safe for swimming and snorkeling. Many visitors now travel to the area to experience the soft sandy beaches and the cooling pristine waters of the ocean. Some like to relax in the relaxing atmosphere of the beach while others indulge in some kite surfing, boat or canoe rides or even some boogie boarding. It is the ideal location for family holidays as each member will find something interesting to do. Visit the nearby places of interest such as the Dutch Fort or the Chapel Hill Lighthouse. Sun, sea, sand and cultural history, all meet at one place in Passikuda which is an up and coming must visit for all.

MOUNT LAVINIA

Mount Lavinia is a popular beach resort town located very close to the capital Colombo. This suburban beach area is famous for the lovely golden beaches, fondly referred to as the `Golden Mile`, as well as a residential area.

Galle Road, the main road connecting Colombo and the Southern capital of Galle, as well as the rail links between these two main cities run through Mount Lavinia. From the main road to the sea side are a maze of small lanes with attractive old fashioned houses most of which have been converted to small guest houses and hotels. The beach in this area is popular among the local as well as foreigners and is ideal for picnicking, jogging and relaxation. The ocean waters are great for swimming and surfing. Being a beach resort town the main road, the sea side lanes, and the beach front boast various types of eateries and features and an especially lively atmosphere at night.

WADDUWA

Located about 35km south of capital Colombo, Wadduwa is an enchanting little coastal town. A much sought after destination by those seeking tranquility, golden sandy beaches and inviting blue ocean waters.

Locally Wadduwa is famous for coconut palm cultivation and also the production of coconut toddy, a local intoxicator, and vinegar, both byproducts of coconut. According to folklore the area got its name as it was popularly known as the village of native indigenous physicians. For those visiting Wadduwa today the attractions are the curvy strip of golden sands shaded by palm trees, the blue waters with the perfect undulations for water sports and the nearby fishing villages. The little town is ideal for treasure hunting and soaking up the culture. You can explore the various jewellery shops and hand-craft stalls and also enjoy local fare served at the various small wayside eateries. Overall Wadduwa offers a laid back atmosphere and even during the evenings the beaches afford a tranquil setting. Some of the hotels boast a lively night atmosphere but the beaches remain quiet and slow day and night.

TANGALLE

Located along the southern coast of Sri Lanka, Tangalle is small town in the Hambantota District. The main attraction here is its tranquil setting and the gorgeous sandy beaches.

Nestled in a rocky outcrop Tangalle is a thriving fishing port in the area and is a popular holiday destination for those seeking sun, sea and serenity. The ocean waters here provide good swimming conditions and hotels in the area feature other water sports as well. Off shore diving is also a popular sport especially as the area is famous for turtles.

NEGOMBO

Negombo is the most popular coastal town north of Colombo. A combination of resort town, fishing village and an enchanting lagoon makes it an ideal holiday destination.

Originally Negombo had been a famous cinnamon producing area and so it became a popular port under the Portuguese and Dutch rule. The influence of colonization is still visible in the area with ancient churches as the main religion in the area is Roman Catholicism. The old Dutch Fort Gate is now used as part of the local prison and the 100km old Dutch Canal which runs through the town is still being used. The stretch of beach closer to the main town features popular sea front lodging options. The waters are generally busy with fishermen on the `Oruwas`, a local version of a canoe, but afford excellent conditions for swimming. Those seeking adventure can dive to explore the wreck of the WW II British plane which is off the shores of Marawila.The Muthurajawela Wetlands off the lagoon features a unique coastal ecosystem. This is the Island`s largest marsh and home to pythons as well as other birds, butterflies, reptiles and fish. Negombo`s main industry being fishing it is the ideal place for a scrumptious seafood fare.

JAFFNA

Jaffna is another city that depicts the gloriousness of the Island`s past. Located in the northern most part of Sri Lanka it boasts one of the oldest human habitation areas is South Asia.

Spread across a peninsular attached to the mainland by a very narrow strip of land Jaffna`s close location to the Indian Sub-continent is evident in its cultural heritage. The terrain here is different to the rest of the Island and is mainly made up of low, flat limestone bed with shallow lagoons and tall Palmyra trees complementing the tranquil setting. Off shore there are a number of interesting little islands all featuring similar terrain and landscape. It is the unique culture in the area, the attractions from the vivid and vibrant history and the picturesque setting that makes Jaffna a much sought after holiday destination. The influence of the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British who colonized the Island are portrayed through some of the old buildings and the south Indian influence is portrayed in the various Hindu temples. The nature lover can explore the lagoons which boast interesting bird life and the Palmyra fringed beaches of Jaffna are simply exquisite. And one of the biggest attractions in Jaffna is the authentic `Yaal` cuisine which makes a visit to Jaffna well worth the effort.

BENTOTA

Bentota is a popular beach resort on the south western coast of Sri Lanka. About 65km from capital Colombo it is on your way to the southern capital city of Galle.

The setting of this lovely resort, surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the lagoon and the Bentara River, makes it an ideal destination for nature lovers as well as water sport lovers. The soft undulation of the river provides the ideal condition for novice windsurfers and the lagoon and the ocean waters provide the best conditions for all types of water sports. The area is also famous for the ancient Sri Lankan art of healing known as Ayurveda and the famous local intoxicator `Ra`, a beverage made out of fermented coconut nectar.

MATARA

Matara is one of the main towns on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, and the coastal stretch from Galle up to Matara (and even beyond) is a popular tourist resort. The town itself is home to several fascinating attractions and the fishing villages around the area add to the beautiful setting of Matara.

Being under the Portuguese and the Dutch rule, the architectural styles of the old buildings in this destination boasts a blend of east and west. One of the most interesting explorations is the unique star shaped Matara Fort which was built during the 17th century by the Dutch. The beautiful old Dutch church in the Fort is one of the oldest structures of the Fort. The area is also famous for stilt fishing. The villages of Ahangama and Midigama are popular for this form of fishing where the fishermen sit on stilts which are fixed in the water and fish with fishing rods. The southern most point of Sri Lanka, Dondra, is located just 6km east of the town. The main attraction here is the 40 meter high lighthouse which was built during the late 19th century. The various Buddhist temples in and around the area also add to the vibrancy of this destination.

MARAWILA

Marawila is located on the west coast of Sri Lanka and about 55 km north of capital Colombo. This quaint village boasts unspoiled tranquil beaches, shady palm groves and crystal clear ocean waters.

Though not too commercialized and less touristy compared to other coastal areas Marawila is ideal for a relaxing holiday and as a base to explore the small towns around the area. The little village itself is rather rural though the surrounding areas offer fairly comfortable accommodation options with modern facilities. There is much to explore around the area and you can even take on a short excursion to popular attractions in the nearby towns of Chilaw and Negombo. You can even explore the small fishing settlements in the area and watch the fishermen take their `Oruvas`, a local version of the outrigger canoe, out for fishing in the ocean. The dense forest areas are ideal for bird watching and nearby towns boast temples and churches to explore.

AHANGAMA

If you are looking for a quiet getaway then Ahangama is the place for you with its beautiful stretch of beach. Located between the famous towns of Galle and Matara, Ahangama is one of the best places in Sri Lanka for surfing.

You can hire surfing boards though there are no places selling boards outright. While in Ahangama visit a Sea Turtle Farm and Hatchery and be won over by the baby turtles that are to be released back into the ocean.Basically Ahangama is a small fishing town and is a great place to see the unique Stilt fishing. This is a form of fishing found only in Sri Lanka where fishermen with fishing poles, perch upon stilts set up out at sea. There is a certain picture book quality to the silhouette of these fishermen and you will not be able to resist snapping a few shots. Travel to Ahangama for a quieter beach holiday in Sri Lanka.

KOGGALA

Koggala has the distinction of having the longest stretch of beach in Sri Lanka. Koggala beach is ideal for beach lovers looking to enjoy soft sand and warm sunshine.

It is relatively un-crowded when compared to its neighbours Unawatuna or Hikkaduwa and has a more laid back quality to it. There are many places of interest to visit in and around Koggala such as a turtle hatchery, a blow hole which is a unique experience and a folk museum showing Sri Lanka`s more traditional aspects to mention a few. Koggala provides a great beach holiday option for people looking for absolute rest and relaxation. The area has great accommodation options as well which are experienced in the art of hospitality. You can always make day trips to the surrounding areas such as Galle for site seeing, shopping and dining options and return in the evening to your holiday haven, Koggala. Enjoy some diving and snorkeling in the cool waters of the Indian Ocean.

BATTICALOA

Batticaloa, or Batti, is not a destination for exploring sights and attractions. Rather it is a laid back lagoon town of the eastern Sri Lankan coast which boasts exquisite beauty and tranquil charm.

The town is set in the scenic Batticaloa Lagoon which spreads along 56km of shoreline and is home to several interesting and enchanting islands.The main attractions in Batti are the shimmering waters of the lagoon and the lovely sandy beaches in the area. The serene Kallady Beach is the closest to the town whereas the less explored Pasikudah and Kalkudah Beaches are the most amazing stretches of shoreline on the Island. As for sights the old town being a strong hold during the Portuguese and the Dutch Eras features interesting old churches, a fort and other structures.