Last Updated on August 25, 2016 by Jenny Pena
Sri Lanka beaches and driving
We continue sharing about our Sri Lanka travels. Next we tell about our journey through the Sri Lanka beaches!
Beaches are absolutely beautiful! We are immensely grateful for the opportunity to visit this beautiful island! Driving on the other hand, well, it had its beautiful moments….
My husband was in charge of all the travel arrangements for our trip through Sri Lanka. That is, until we reached our third spot and so we completely rearranged all the bookings!
People, if you are looking to hangout at awesome beaches, do take the time to look up off season and peak seasons for each spot! Suffice to say that we realized we needed to cut short some of our beach spots until we reached the beach we could stay at and enjoy. Also try and look for places with a pool in the case the ocean isn’t good the kids have another option. Which reminds me, calling ahead of time to make sure the pool is open is a good idea!
After Negombo we took a drive to Beruwala. This was actually a pretty easy drive. Taking the highway mean no traffic, and beautiful scenery. Coming from the desert, we realllllly enjoyed seeing hills of green! Nature!
The beach was a bit choppy but there was a section some times of the day where the rocks blocked the waves and created a little swimming area! Yay so happy to be back in the ocean at this point, so refreshing! But no surfing here sadly. So we cut our trip to only 2 days
Once into Beruwala the streets can get a bit crazy. Not as bad as Negombo! Roundabouts, remember-clockwise. Stay on the left! Give way to buses and any vehicle bigger than yours. Feel free to honk. We nicknamed the beautiful island Sri Honka! Seriously, it’s safer to honk when passing others, and you can greet others passing you with a honk too.
(Not a driving tip, but if you feel uncomfortable from all the staring, just smile and wave. Hahaha )
Four days in Hikkaduwa Beach during low season was a little much. But seeing as we did not want to travel during Sabbath, and didn’t want to deal with cancelation fees, we made the most of it. Again, we looked for a spot during the day we could let the kiddos play on the beach. The water was rough so only my husband and I took a quick dip. But the buildings provided some shade for sand castles….and sand eating for Noah, ew!
I’m sure during surf season this place is hoppin, but we found some cool things to do. We went to a turtle hatchery. They weren’t releasing any that day but we got to see them, the kids loved it. As we left on the road we spotted a monkey dressed as a clown…weird. So we stopped to let Jasmin see and its owner opened a basket, our pooped a COBRA!
I said I’m keeping the same distance that monkey is, except there’s no tree for me to climb…just take a picture and get back in the car please!!! Two night during our trip I dreamt of Cobra attack after that, no, no, I don’t play with snakes!
The drive from Beruwala was also fairly easy, take the highway of course, once you’re in its fairly quiet unless its peak season then I’m not sure.
Ok so July is monsoon season therefore expect choppy waters, no surf, he less you’re awesome like that and can catch any way. We are not, we are definitely beginners. So we cut our trip short once again and stayed only one night in Mirissa.
This is where we sat and looked at all our booking to see which we could still move without a fee. We made calls, changed some things, left some days empty to book as we went along. We decided we’d go to the Safari then to the next beach, Arugam Bay.
We did have the best rotis if our trip in Mirissa so don’t miss out! Just search Trip Advisor for it should be an easy find. The place is in the kiddie of some weird roads so keep an eye out for signs as you get closer.
To Mirissa was a success, a short easy trip. By now my husband had the hang of driving and the road were nice. Later on in our stories I’ll write about the crazy roads!
We actually had a couple nights in udalwale before Arugam but I’ll leave that for a separate post.
Finally a place we can be on the ocean with the kids safely!!! Now we really saw a ton of foreigners, dozens of hotels, restaurants, and shops. Be sure to check your bookings if you’re traveling with kids, there are some noisy not child friendly places.
This is where we decided to stay for eight days. We booked two different hotels for sake of change on budget. AC is definitely needed, Arugam was very hot! Arugam was definitely in peak season, we got to watch awesome surfing, and even give it a try.
We were happy to be in this little town. Except, because there is much foreign influence, we experienced our first unkind Sri Lankans!
Some places are really beat up, the sand has trash scattered here and there. But then you see the point breaks. The surf, wow, no wonder it’s one of the best surf spots in the world! It is a really interesting break. We tried surfing but the boards we rented, well, I didn’t like mine. My husband felt bad to leave us alone on the beach so he only tried twice. The break was a bit crowded, the reef on the shore was scary, and the kiddos had us occupied with meal times, nap times, etc. so we enjoyed watching and hanging in the water.
Tip: there’s a spot that is really shallow and fills up into a little cove perfect for bathing with the babies. Jamin and Noah loved it. It does get pretty crowded after about 3. And if you look like a foreigner people will approach you, children will want to talk to you. If you have little ones they will touch them and talk to them, so expect no personal space and shock if you’re rude about it!
From udalwale to Arugam bay was a bit long, about three–4 hours but not too much curvy roads. Not a highway like the others so expect narrow roads. Monaragala is a good rest stop if you need it. Also there was a tree house spot we weren’t able to check out so if you’re around its worth giving a call to see, or even stay a night!
There you have it
All the beaches we visited. If we had planned better we would have spent less time in these off season spots and hangout up from Arugam perhaps Trincomalee.
If you’re up for volunteering or charity, a simple Google search will provide organizations such as orphanages that are in need of donations.
If you are planning your travel please feel free to ask any questions I might have missed some details! Enjoy the Sri Lanka beaches!