South is, of course, a famous beach destination during September to April when is the dry season. It is an area that was devastated by the Tsunami in 2004 and took some time to developed new cities. Since many tourists came to this part, locals built many luxurious hotels, restaurants and resorts. It is even full of Airbnb places, guesthouses or to rent just a bed. With beaches and water come the water sports, activities and other business as turtle watching, fishing, diving, snorkelling and surfing. At the top of it are parties, loud music till late nights and drinking alcohol. Also here, we can find many temples, mainly Buddhist and sacred places. Nature, beaches are so beautiful.
With a hefty dose of tourists every year, there are cases of manipulation, scams and cheating. So be aware of this, take care and fully enjoy the south.
I am still adding new pictures and experiences, so stay in touch!
Buduruwagala is an ancient Buddhist temple with the largest of the standing Buddha statue with 16 m from head to toe. Do not expect any golding, paintings or other decorations. This place shows history and simplicity. Read more!
This place surrounded by the most beautiful and sandy beaches, fill your expectations perfectly. I have spent three times at different hotels. You can find there as a very luxurious resort as a cheap guesthouse.
Galle Fort is architectural and cultural considered as a place that was colonized by Dutch, Portuguese and British. Their history breathes through it. Be aware; there are many so-called Guides who want to tell you interesting facts and walk around with you for money. Entrance to the Fort is open every day till late hours and for free. It is just a few meters from the bus station, so you don’t even need a tuk-tuk. In case you need one, preferably use Pickme/Uber – drivers will ask a high price!
Galle is also famous for beaches with surfing and hotels, parties and tourists.
The most south point of Srilanka with a beautiful lighthouse and biodiversity around. It is easy to park around, and entrance is free of charge. At my time 2019, I haven’t been climbing the lighthouse since it wasn’t open, but that could change. You can walk around, make many pictures. There is no country below considering Srilanka is on the map the last island. I recommend you to go there in the late afternoon to see the sunset – that is something!
Dickwella is not only famous for beach time and surfing but also a nice Buddhist temple. The area of the temple is enormous with many places to see, from a Hell temple, a temple with the oldest paintings, a big Buddha statue etc. As other sacred places, you have to leave your shoes at the entrance and dress appropriately! There is a fee entrance. The true purpose of the temple and the mind of the local people got twisted. It seems to be a machine for tourists money, in each place they ask you for a small donation and they even look mad if you don’t give them any. And the saddest thing is one poor tightened elephant near to the temple. All his legs are tight; therefore, he/she can’t even sit or move. Part of the Buddhist mindset is to have an elephant near the temple to prove and show “something”. Unfortunately, I don’t understand, and for me, it seems just silly cruelty.
It is a trendy place for tourists, so there are a lot of hotels and places for accommodation and restaurants with seafood, local food, juices, tea and coffee and with fruits. The locals are very accustomed to tourists; therefore, the prices are adequately higher for everything. Tourists bring parties and ladies! be aware of beachboys.
Turtles are other attraction why to come here. Unfortunately, less a real business instead of genuine help to the wild animals. You have two options. Watch and swim with big sea turtles near Hikka Tranz Cinnamon resort. There are some tourists to watch and locals to collect money – they give you a piece of fruits or green grass to feed them. Afterwards, they ask you for money. It happened to me. Don’t take anything from anyone if you don’t want to pay. The area is free to visit, and you will find it easily, ask locals. PLEASE, don’t touch turtles and don’t feed them by anything of yours.
The second are small turtles, babies who are running to the water. Again, it is a business to collect money from tourist. Locals are catching eggs from turtles around to have something to show visitors. I don’t say all of them are that bad. Don’t support such a business. Every visit and more money give those people power.
You can visit Community Tsunami Education Center & Museum situated on the road to Galle. It is free for some donation. You can see pictures of the area before and after.
Tsunami Honganji Vihara is the big Buddha standing near to the main road. Location. Build after the Tsunami which hit a train where around 1700 people died. It is free to visit but expected a small donation.
And of course, to learn surfing, snorkelling, paddle boarding, sea fishing and appreciate sandy beaches. Location.