Tangalla

Strung out along one of the south's most beautiful stretches of coastline, Tangalla is amongst the region's most speedily growing tourist beach destinations, although despite the burgeoning number of guest houses and smaller hotels, tourism here hasn't yet taken off apart from a few upmarket boutique resorts which have sprung up, and the whole place remains resolutely low-key compared to Unawatuna, Hikkaduwa and Pasikudah on the east coast. If you want watersports, shops, restaurants and nightlife, this isn't the place to come; but if you just want great expanses of beautiful sandy beach to crash out on, Tangalla is worth a shout.

The area around Tangalla is also home to a number of rewarding attractions, including the Hummaniya blowhole, the giant Buddha statue and multicolored temple of Wewurukanala and the magnificent rock temples of Mulkirigala, all of which can be combined into a rewarding half-day excursion. In addition, the nearby beach at Rekawa is one Sri Lanka’s premier site for turtle-watching alongside with Kosgoda in the southwest coast, offering the opportunity to see these majestic creatures drag themselves ashore to lay their eggs in the sand. Dedicated ornithologists might also fancy a trip to the little-visited Kalametiya Bird Sanctuary, home to a rich selec­tion of marine birdlife and a boat trip along the Walawe river falling to the ocean at Ambalantota is a rich reward for bird and nature lovers who could observe the diverse flora and fauna in this rich mangrove are along the river bund.

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