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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Joanna James Joanna James
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Top 05 Attractions in Kalutara – City where River and Sea Meet

Enjoy the best of both worlds with a stay in Kalutara; where the mighty Kalu Ganga flows to the sea. The southern coast resorts are extremely popular as a playground & locale for tradition & culture.


Visit the Kalutara Bodhiya

The Kalutara Bodhiya is an iconic attraction as well as a revered pilgrimage site in the south. The temple warrants a stop by all Buddhist passing its site. Roadside tills are used by passing devotees to offer alms as a means of a safe journey. The temple is home to one of the oldest Bo trees in the country; it is now a towering tree that sits on the banks of the Kalu Ganga located opposite the main temple. The temple itself is a treat to explore if you are interested in Buddhist culture and traditions. Within are also artworks by prominent artists.


Head Over to Richmond Castle

Richmond Castle offers a taste of both colonial influences and Sri Lankan extravagance. The castle was built by a wealthy local 'Mudliyar', the architecture is reflective of British designs; influenced by the then occupation of Sri Lanka by the British. The castle and its surrounding grounds are quite extensive with staff available to offer comprehensive insights into the place and its history.


Chilling on Kalutara Beach

Beautiful Kalutara Beach stretches on for endless miles. Waskaduwa and Katukurunda home to AVANI Kalutara Resort are most popular as resort centres. You can swim, ski, Jet Ski, snorkel or simply laze on the sandy shores. Plenty of sunshine and swaying palms add to the holiday vibes as you relax unwind and enjoy the allure of beautiful Kalutara Beach.


Explore Fa Hien Caves

According to legend, the caves which by the way are easily reached from your Kalutara resort; were named after a Chinese Buddhist Monk Fa Hsien (Hien.)They are best known for the late Pleistocene skeletal remains found over a space of time from 1960's to 2013. Apart for the skeletal remains other artefacts found were remnants of ancient fires, stone tools or 'microliths' as well as remains of plants. The caves are also known as the Pahiyangala Caves; it takes a 20 minute climb up a staircase to reach the first cave. Apart from the immense historical aspect of the place, one can enjoy the verdant forest at the base of the mountain around which the caves are located.


Shop for Batiks and Wooden Artefacts

The southern belt is well known for its allure of artistic handicrafts; amongst these batiks in all hues and colours are sold at roadside kiosks. There are many friendly little shops which you could browse for batik bags, wall hangings, clothing, wraparounds, shawls, shirts and sarongs. Wooden carvings by master craftsmen too are available in the form of adoring little figurines and masks that resemble various deities while the large wooden carvings are beautiful works of art. On the Kalutara beach, you will come across Ranjith Carving and Batik Museum; a fascinating shop to explore.