Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka
Have you ever thought that far far away; deep in the land of Sri Lanka lies a coastal area that is known as surfers paradise? Well, I did not know that. Shame on me! Not having a 'travel bible' to guide me around seems to be rewarding at times, and this is one of the few that surprises me after spending some time volunteering days earlier in a village in Matara.
Quoted from Wikipedia "The bay is located 320 km due east of Colombo."Ullai" as Arugam Bay is locally known is a popular surfing and tourist destination. Beyond surfing there are many things can be enjoyable, Lagoon tour, bird watching, elephant watching, Kumana National Park, Kudumpigala monarchy and many ancient ruins & archaeological sites. After the war ended, there are lot of tourist not only surfers but many nature lovers visiting Arugam Bay."
|Location of Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka. Image from Google Map.|
Monsoon in Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka
Arugam Bay spread along the southeast coast of Sri Lanka bound to show you the best it has to offer. While it is best to avoid being under the weather during monsoon season, you might want to also consider avoiding the big crowd if you are not fond of it during peak season from May to September. As for me, I was there in January. Arriving Arugam Bay in the middle of a monsoon evening with a German couple (Ron and Leo), whom I met while in the bus from Monaragala.
|Empty road in Arugam Bay , Sri Lanka - paradise to me|
|Empty road at Arugam Bay, Sri Lanka - I love it !!|
No sight of tourists on a deserted road. This is perfect! No tuk tuk haggling, no big group of people promoting hotel, tour and transportation. I was comfortable walking around to absorb the essence at my own pace though I was getting wet from the pouring rain. Sigh of joy....Oh, what a happy day!
|My Rs1000 room per night entirely for myself - Green Beach Hotel, Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka|
|My en-suite room. Green Beach Hotel, Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka|
|My room is the one on the left in this picture - It comes with a front porch, what a luxury. Green Beach Hotel, Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka|
|This is the hotel I stayed in for Rs 1000 per night. Green Beach Hotel, Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka|
We walked down the deserted wet road looking for a place to stay. I settled in at Green Beach Hotel for Rs 1000 per night after agreed to meet for dinner with Ron and Leo. Best part, about traveling off season, is that I had the en-suite room at an incredible low price for all my comfort to enjoy. Again, this is depending on a person's budget and comfort level.
Having the famous Kottu Roti for dinner was a good choice, after all. You can hear it from a distance away from the making of it. Chopping away with two metal cutters on a big flat pan Similarly like Char Kuey Teow in Malaysia except that Kottu Roti is being made with a louder chopping sound on the flat pan. It would be a good workout and therapy for some.
How Kottu Roti is being made : Video from Youtube
|Kottu Roti at Sri Lanka|
I can't help but to relax and unwind by reading a book which I traded at Gecko Guesthouse by walking in the rain with my yellow rain coat on, situated not far down the street from where I was staying since not much can be done during monsoon season. I can imagine it must have been a complete different atmosphere during the peak season. As the night kicked in, I dozed off with the sound of raindrops on the roof of my room. At times, waking up to the thunder and lightning. I was glad to have a reliable roof to protect this little female solo traveler.
|Nice and funny book to read. Have you watched the movie yet?|
Waking up to an early wet morning the following day seemed refreshing though it was a bit gloomy. Nevertheless, it did not deter this little adventurous stint of mine to get out and start exploring. All set with flip flop; I walked out of my hotel room to grab a traditional Sri Lankan breakfast before I head down to the beach. Walking along the coast, I found myself being in the middle of local fishermen coming to shore after sailing out for the catch of the day. Business is officially open. You can witness how trading is being done here and try your skills before buying if you fancy cooking on your own. You might get a stare or two from locals out of curiosity, otherwise business is as usual.
|Open for business. Fishermen at Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka|
|The daredevil teenagers looking for a surf spot. Arugam Bay - Sri Lanka|
Continuing my walk along the shore, some daredevil teenagers were looking for the best spot to surf. After a short chat with them, they decided to surf elsewhere since the waves were 'breaking'. It was nice of them to invite me on a surfing trip under the monsoon weather, but decided to reject politely as I needed some quiet time. We managed to catch up later in the evening and chat about surfing and scuba diving. From the description of it, seems like Arugam Bay is THE place to be during peak season. Surf enthusiasts coming from as far as Australia with the surf board, spending hours by bus to Arugam Bay. Just so you know there is a surfers paradise in Australia which is Gold Coast. If this doesn't sound crazy to you, believe it! There are people doing it. Which means only one thing - come to Arugam Bay!
It was such a pity that I did not get to do many activities while there. However, I appreciate the quiet and solitude moment as a blessing to my soul. Looking forward for a return to Arugam Bay to get on that surfboard.
Personal expenses for 3 days 2 nights at Arugam bay ( Price as of 2013 ) :
Rs 190 - Bus from Monaragala to Arugam Bay
Rs 2000 - 2 nights at Green Beach Hotel
Rs 90 - Breakfast
Rs 870 - Western lunch
Rs 130 - Snacks
Rs 450 - Western breakfast
Rs 150 - Tuk tuk Arugam bay to Pothuvil
Total = Rs 3880 / MYR 98.28
**1 Malaysian Ringgit = 39.48 Sri Lankan Rupee(expenses were based solely at Arugam Bay area only, excluding other expenses as mentioned in my Sri Lanka post )
This blog post is written for Arugambay Bookings, to share my travel experience with them. To book your travel needs, Arugambay Bookings is here to help. They are available on Facebook too. All contents are based on my personal experience.
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