What to do and Where to stay in
The South Coast
This glorious stretch of coastline, from the fortified town of Galle to the beach resort of Tangalle, offers a wonderful insight into local life with traditional fishing villages, laid back surf towns and idyllic bays to discover. With some of the prettiest beaches in the country as well as a superb selection of boutique hotels and villas, this area of Sri Lanka is, not surprisingly, one of the most popular destinations for families.
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Experiences in The South Coast
The southern town of Tangalle is quiet and unspoilt, with a wide palm-fringed bay and rocky coves. In our opinion it is a strong contender for one of Sri Lanka’s most beautiful beaches with swaying palms, golden sands and turquoise waters, everything you want in a tropical beach!
A short drive from Tangalle is Rekawa Beach, an important nesting ground for sea turtles which come ashore from April-September. Volunteers from the Turtle Conservation Project take groups to the beach after dark for a chance to witness these wonderful creatures as they lay their eggs or return to the sea. To the west lies the colourful fishing harbour of Mirissa. From December to April it is also the base for whale-watching excursions with Blue Whales and Sperm Whales frequently spotted off the shoreline.
Further afield there are more opportunities for exciting wildlife encounters at Yala and Uda Walawe National Parks, which can be visited on a full day excursion from your beach hotel. While for bird-lovers Bundala National Park is an important sanctuary for migratory water birds the highlight being the flamingo, but there is also a strong chance of seeing elephants and crocodiles here too.
Sri Lanka’s south coast beaches have become a paradise for surfers. Weligama bay is a popular spot with a surf break ideal for the novice surfer and experienced instructors on hand to offer lessons. You may also be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of stilt fisherman who still today practice this age-old tradition of fishing.
Galle, made famous by its 17th century Dutch fort, is a destination in its own right. It’s a relic of Portuguese and Dutch colonialism with winding streets and a distinctively Mediterranean atmosphere. Some fabulous new restaurants and bars have recently opened and combined with the excellent shopping and cricket, there is much to keep you here.
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