I’ll take you on your taste of WEST COAST beaches by starting in the north at KALPITIYA – one of my top beaches in this island of beautiful beaches.
It’s a get-away-from-it-all place, a less well known place – wish I could keep it that way ! It’s a place where a few in-the-know holidaymakers enjoy a sunrise walk along the shore, a paddle in the gentle waves, while watching the arriving night time fishing boats return with their catch. What could be better than ending the day on the sunset beach enjoying fresh, juicy seafood!
This serene area offers snorkelling, kite surfing, diving and more. Enjoy an early morning boat trip to see sperm whales, spinner, bottlenose and humpback dolphins leap playfully around you, creating splashes of white water hitting the deep blue. There’s the chance of coming across an elusive dugong, too.
As an excursion, the entrance to Wilpattu National Park is just 114km away but, due to the need to enter the park early morning, an overnight stay nearby would be needed.
Kalpitiya was once an important hub for Arab Merchants trading with the Anuradhapura kings. The peninsula was invaded in the 17th century by the Portuguese who built a fort, some of which, although altered by the Dutch when they chased the Portuguese out, can be seen today. It was an important post for the Dutch East India Company. Today fishing is still an important income earner for the local people although, with the resettlement of displaced Tamils from the North, crop farming has added a lush tinge to the area and is a big money earner. When the government’s tourism plan is finished, tourism will add to the economy in a big way. Go now, I say!
Just 145km from the International airport at Katunayake, Kalpitiya is an easy to get to beach destination. In addition, it makes a great end of tour beach stay as it is also a quiet 120km drive from Anuradhapura.