Attractions

Top Choice Buddhist Site in Tangalla & Around

Mulkirigala Rock Temples

Dangling off a rocky crag 16km northwest of Tangalla and nestled away among a green forest of coconut trees are the peaceful rock temples of Mulkirigala. Clamber in a sweat up the 500 or so steps and you’ll encounte…
Top Choice National Park in Bundala National Park

Bundala National Park

Bundala National Park is a fantastic maze of waterways, lagoons and dunes that glitter like gold in the dying evening sun. This wonderland provides a home to thousands of colourful birds ranging from diminutive litt…
Top Choice Buddhist Stupa in Tissamaharama

Tissa Dagoba

This large much-restored dagoba looming between Tissa town centre and the wewa is believed to have been originally built around 200 BC by Kavantissa, a king of Ruhunu, located in present-day Tissamaharama. The white…
Top Choice Plantation in Thalpe & Koggala

Handunugoda Tea Estate

This exquisite tea plantation in the hills above Koggala offers (free) highly informative tours of the estate. You'll sample and learn how they produce over 25 varieties of tea here, including the fabled Virgin Whit…
Top Choice Museum in Thalpe & Koggala

Martin Wickramasinghe Folk Art Museum

This interesting museum includes the house where respected Sinhalese author Martin Wickramasinghe (1890–1976) was born (the traditional southern structure dates back 200 years and has some Dutch architectural influe…
Top Choice Historic Site in Galle

Flag Rock

Flag Rock, at the southernmost end of the Fort, was once a Portuguese bastion. Today it is easily the most popular place to catch a sunset. During daylight hours you may see daredevil locals leaping into the water f…
Top Choice Fort in Matara

Star Fort

This fort was built by the Dutch to compensate for deficiencies in the neighbouring rampart, but it’s so small it could only have protected a handful of bureaucrats. Look out for the construction date (1765) embosse…
Top Choice Beach in Mirissa

Mirissa Beach

A vision of tropical bliss, Mirissa Beach boasts powdery pale sand, while its azure water is framed by an arc of coconut palms. The west side is the nicest and has the broadest expanse of sand; as the bay curves gen…
Top Choice Church in Galle

Dutch Reformed Church

Originally built in 1640, the present building dates from 1752. Its floor is paved with gravestones from Dutch cemeteries, while other impressive features include the organ and an imposing pulpit made from calamande…
Top Choice Hindu Shrine in Kataragama

Maha Devale

This is Kataragama's most important shrine. It contains the lance of the six-faced, 12-armed Hindu war god, Murugan (Skanda), who is seen as identical to the Kataragama Deviyo. Followers make offerings at daily puja…