A SALTY ADVENTURE TO SRI LANKA
Our Christmas holidays were spent on a two week adventure holiday to Sri Lanka. It’s the perfect destination for adventure girls as it really does have something for everyone.
You are spoilt for choice with surfing, SUPing, swimming, yoga and endless hikes. Mix this all in with the most incredible palm tree lined beaches, crystal clear waters and incredible national parks and you have one perfect place for adventure.
Our plan was to stick to the coast and hop from town to town starting on the west coast and heading south.
Flying in from Australia we landed in the capital Colombo. It’s very easy and definitely part of the adventure experience to jump on the train down to Hikkaduwa. The train takes about 2.5 hours and cost approx $2. It follows the coast so the scenery is beautiful and it's also a great chance to chat to the very friendly locals and fellow travellers on there.
Hikkaduwa is probably the most well known surf town on the west coast. It's definitely no secret and its close location to Colombo means it's now pretty touristy. It still has great adventure options however and plenty of cultural things to do from the town if you are looking for some day trips. The long sandy beach is a great running route too.
For surfing, Hikkaduwa has a great beach break for beginner/intermediates and then also an A-frame break for some more challenging waves. There are plenty of short, long and foamie boards to hire which are approximately $3 an hour or $10 per day. The surf season on the west coast goes from November to March and then May to September the swell is on the east coast. So we were right in season to catch some waves in this area.
Our next destination was Ahangama. We went out onto the main road and took the local bus there which took just over an hour. The buses are super cheap but they are crazy drivers, it definitely an adrenalin rush.
We stayed at MEMO Wellness Boutique Hotel. It’s just over the train track in Ahangama and about a minutes walk from one of the best surf spot in the area called The Rock. Ahangama moves into Midigama then Welligama and Marissa which have numerous surf breaks. This area is where you want to be if surfing is really what you are after. It’s got quite a surf culture/vibe to it now with plenty of quirky cafes, hostels and boutique hotels. The great thing is there are waves for all levels, breaks with sandy bottoms and reef breaks.
For days spent out the water there are plenty of great yoga studios around to enjoy some yoga sessions. There’s also a tea plantation up the road and a national park with loads of wild elephants that are great to go and explore. We got around on a scooter we rented for about $10 a day or you can use one of the many tuk tuks to get around.
We carried on south winding around the very tip of Sri Lanka so we were entering the south east coast. We arrived in Talalla. A really untouched beach covered in palm trees. There’s traditional fishing boats on the beach and little beach shacks that open up during the day for freshly made curries and fish. The food in Sri Lanka is incredible BTW!
Talalla beach itself doesn’t have surf but there's a big yoga retreat in the area plus you can reach quiet surf beaches a short Tuk Tuk drive away. Finding a beach with a quiet line up was a pretty special find due to it being Christmas but we did just that at a beach called SK Town. Ssshhhh keep it a secret!
Our last stop was Hiriketiya. This is an incredibly beautiful horse shop bay with gentle rolling waves. It's a beginners dream with turtles popping up next to you while you surf. Out the back there's also a reef break for more advanced surfers but can get crowed with a small take off zone.
The town itself has really turned into a little buzzing surf spot with cool cafes, boutique hotels and surf shops. It still has its charm too with loads of local homes to eat in and as always the locals were super friendly to see us.
You can't go wrong with an adventure holiday to Sri Lanka.