Places to visit in Hikkaduwa
Welcome to the enchanting world of Hikkaduwa! Located just a short distance from the bustling city of Colombo, this coastal haven beckons with its captivating beauty and a wealth of adventures waiting to be discovered. Join us as we embark on a virtual journey to explore the best places to visit in Hikkaduwa, showcasing the incredible sights and experiences that make this destination truly special. The Hikkaduwa Beach stands tall among the must-visit destinations in Hikkaduwa. This pristine stretch of sand is a haven for sun-seekers and beach lovers alike. With its crystal-clear waters and powdery sands, it offers the perfect setting for relaxation. For adventurous souls, Hikkaduwa offers an array of thrilling water sports. Grab a surfboard and ride the waves that grace the coastline, or try your hand at snorkelling and witness the mesmerizing marine life beneath the surface. Immerse yourself in the spiritual heritage of Hikkaduwa with a visit to Seenigama Temple. Located on a serene island, this sacred site holds centuries-old traditions and architectural marvels. Embark on a journey to these remarkable places in Hikkaduwa, and let the beauty and charm of this coastal paradise leave an indelible mark on your heart.
1. Hikkaduwa Beach
At Hikkaduwa Beach, you’ll be mesmerized by the rich diversity of marine life. Dive into the crystal-clear waters and encounter a myriad of fish species, each displaying vibrant colours and unique characteristics. Explore the mesmerizing coral reefs that serve as underwater gardens, teeming with life and offering a glimpse into an enchanting world beneath the waves. Hikkaduwa Beach is not just a paradise for beach lovers but also offers a plethora of places to visit in Hikkaduwa. One of the highlights of Hikkaduwa Beach is the opportunity to swim with sea turtles. Dive into the ocean and be captivated by these gentle creatures as they gracefully glide through the water. Experience the wonder of swimming alongside them, and if you’re lucky, you may even have the chance to feed these magnificent turtles, creating cherished memories that will last a lifetime. As the sun sets over Hikkaduwa Beach, the vibrant nightlife comes alive. The beach town is dotted with lively restaurants, bars and pubs that offer a vibrant atmosphere and delightful entertainment. Dance to the rhythm of music, mingle with fellow travellers and locals and savour delicious food and refreshing beverages. The nightlife in Hikkaduwa Beach adds a touch of excitement and enjoyment to your beachside getaway.
2. Hikkaduwa National Park
Hikkaduwa National Park is one of the 3 marine national parks in Sri Lanka. This coastal gem invites you to dive into a world of wonder and discover the remarkable beauty that lies beneath the azure waters, as well as the captivating attractions that await you on land. Designated as a national park on September 19, 2002, this pristine marine ecosystem has captivated visitors from around the globe. As you venture into Hikkaduwa National Park, you’ll encounter a typical shallow fringing reef, boasting an average depth of around 5 m. This vibrant coral reef stretches along the coast for a remarkable 4 km, offering an underwater paradise that beckons you to explore its depths. The reef at Hikkaduwa National Park is home to an astounding array of corals, with 60 species belonging to 31 genera recorded from the reef. As you navigate through the reef, you’ll also encounter over 170 species of reef fish belonging to 76 genera. Embark on a journey into this marine sanctuary and the places to visit in Hikkaduwa, and let the beauty of the underwater realm and the charm of the town leave you with memories to treasure for a lifetime.
3. Hikkaduwa Lake
Hikkaduwa Lake is a natural wonder that beckons explorers and nature enthusiasts alike. This pristine lake, situated a mere 2 km away from Baddegama road, offers a serene escape into the heart of Sri Lanka’s Southern Province. With its diverse ecosystem and exciting activities, Hikkaduwa Lake is not only a tranquil oasis but also a gateway to the great places to visit in Hikkaduwa. As you step foot into the enchanting realm of Hikkaduwa Lake, you’ll be greeted by a thriving ecosystem teeming with life. This natural lake is home to a fascinating array of wildlife, including monitor lizards, colourful birds, fish, and even crocodiles. Nature lovers will be enthralled by the sight of these majestic creatures as they gracefully inhabit the lake’s serene surroundings. For those seeking excitement and outdoor fun, Hikkaduwa Lake offers a host of thrilling activities. Hop aboard a boat and glide across the calm waters, feeling the gentle breeze on your face as you explore the lake’s hidden corners. If you’re feeling more adventurous, grab a canoe or kayak and navigate the shimmering surface of the lake, immersing yourself in its tranquillity. For a truly unforgettable experience, embark on a lagoon safari guided by knowledgeable professionals, where you’ll discover the wonders of Hikkaduwa Lake’s unique ecosystem.
4. Narigama Beach
Narigama Beach is a picturesque stretch of coastline extending for 3-4 km along the stunning shores of Hikkaduwa. Known for its incredible surfing opportunities, Narigama Beach offers much more than just waves. It’s one of the top places to visit in Hikkaduwa, combining thrilling water sports with a vibrant beach atmosphere. For surf enthusiasts, Narigama Beach is an ideal destination. The beach boasts consistent waves and a swell that attracts surfers from around the globe. Whether you’re a beginner eager to catch your first wave or an experienced rider seeking new challenges, Narigama Beach has you covered. Renowned surf schools with international acclaim line the beach, offering expert guidance and training for surfers of all levels. They’ll ensure that you have the skills and confidence to conquer the waves and make lasting memories. If you don’t have your surfboard, don’t worry. Narigama Beach is dotted with local shops that sell and rent top-quality surfboards. These shops cater to all skill levels and wave conditions, providing you with the perfect board to enhance your surfing experience. The friendly staff at these establishments are always ready to assist you in finding the right surfboard for your needs.
5. Tsunami Honganji Viharaya
Tsunami Honganji Viharaya is a place of solace and reflection, offering a unique experience for visitors. The highlight of Tsunami Honganji Viharaya is the captivating small island situated in the middle of a serene pond. It is on this island that you will find a magnificent statue of Lord Buddha, standing tall and majestic, facing the ocean waves. The statue, in the Abhaya mudra pose, symbolizes protection and fearlessness. It is a replica of Afghanistan’s Bamiyan Buddha, known for its historical significance and exquisite craftsmanship. Rising to an impressive height of 30 m, the Buddha statue at Tsunami Honganji Viharaya serves as a poignant memorial to the victims who tragically lost their lives during the devastating tsunami of 2004. It stands as a testament to the resilience and strength of the human spirit, offering a place for visitors to pay their respects and find solace. What makes Tsunami Honganji Viharaya even more special is the collaboration that brought it to life. Built with the assistance of Japan’s Honganji Temple of Kyoto, this sacred site represents the strong bond between Sri Lanka and Japan, symbolizing unity and international friendship. Include Tsunami Honganji Viharaya in your list of places to visit in Hikkaduwa, and allow yourself to be moved by its tranquillity and the meaningful experience it offers.
6. Sea Turtle Hatchery
The Sea Turtle Hatchery in Hikkaduwa is a place of wonder, where you can witness the incredible efforts to protect and conserve some of the most remarkable creatures on our planet. This sanctuary serves as a crucial hub for safeguarding sea turtle nests, incubating their eggs, and releasing adorable hatchlings into the ocean. As you explore the hatchery, you’ll have the opportunity to encounter five fascinating species of sea turtles: the Olive Ridley Turtle, Leatherback Turtle, Loggerhead Turtle, Hawksbill Turtle, and Green Turtle. These gentle creatures find refuge in this haven, where they are nurtured and protected with great care. But the Sea Turtle Hatchery is more than just a conservation centre. It’s also a must-visit place in Hikkaduwa, where you can witness the beauty of these majestic creatures up close and personal. The hatchery works closely with local communities and passionate volunteers, creating a strong bond in the collective effort to protect these endangered species. While exploring Hikkaduwa, make sure to include the Sea Turtle Hatchery in your list of places to visit in Hikkaduwa. Not only will you be captivated by the remarkable conservation efforts, but you’ll also gain a deeper understanding of the fascinating life cycle of sea turtles and the challenges they face in the wild.
7. Seenigama Vihara
Located in the heart of Hikkaduwa, Seenigama Vihara is a sanctuary of spiritual significance and a must-visit destination among the top places to visit in Hikkaduwa. Immerse yourself in the captivating allure of this ancient temple, where tranquillity and divine energy await. Divided into two sections, Seenigama Vihara offers a unique experience that blends natural beauty and cultural heritage. One section is nestled on the mainland, while the other is found on a serene island, accessible by a short boat ride. As you step foot on the island, you will be enchanted by the peaceful atmosphere and breathtaking surroundings. The temple is dedicated to the revered deity Devol Deviyo, drawing devotees and curious visitors alike. Take a moment to pay your respects and soak in the profound spirituality that fills the air. To reach the island section, hop aboard a local boat, gliding through the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean. Feel the gentle sway of the waves and let the ocean breeze invigorate your senses. The boat ride itself offers a picturesque view of the coastline, creating a memorable experience for all. Once on the island, marvel at the architectural splendour of Seenigama Vihara. Intricate carvings and ornate designs adorn the temple, reflecting the unique artistic heritage of Sri Lanka.
8. Tsunami Museum
Located in the serene town of Peraliya, just a stone’s throw away from the captivating destination of Hikkaduwa, the Tsunami Museum stands as a poignant reminder of a catastrophic event that unfolded on the 26th of December 2004. This fateful day witnessed a seismic earthquake measuring 9.1-9.3 on the Richter scale, unleashing colossal waves that grew up to an astonishing height of 30 m. The devastating impact resulted in the loss of 30,957 lives, with an additional 5,637 people reported missing, leaving a profound mark on the history of the region. As you step into the Tsunami Museum, you are transported to a time of great tragedy. The museum houses a collection of compelling images that offer a glimpse into the sheer power and devastation of the tsunami. It serves as a solemn tribute to the lives lost and the immense courage displayed by survivors. The exhibits convey the strength of the human spirit in the face of adversity, inspiring visitors with stories of resilience and hope. A visit to the Tsunami Museum not only offers a glimpse into a tragic chapter of history but also provides an opportunity to discover the captivating places to visit in Hikkaduwa.