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Updated by Joanna James on Feb 11, 2018
Headline for Top 05 Kalutara Activities – Enjoy Some Southern Coast Allures
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Top 05 Kalutara Activities – Enjoy Some Southern Coast Allures

Kalutara sits along the popular south coast of Sri Lanka. Home to the iconic Kalutara Temple, serviced by the Indian Ocean and River Kalu this popular beach resort has much to explore and enjoy.

1

Discover the Holistic Charms of Kalutara Bodhiya

Kalutara Bodhiya is the symbolic attraction that announces to all they are entering the town of Kalutara. Sitting at the end of the bridge spanning the River Kalu this temple is in two parts. The most historic aspect is the sacred Bo tree residing on the banks of the river opposite the road from the temple. This tree is believed to be a sapling from the Sri Maha Bodhiya which was brought over from India in the time of Buddha. Along the road facing the temple are roadside tills and no Buddhist will pass through the town without stopping to pray and offer arms; it is believed this gesture bestows the blessings of the dhamma for a safe journey. If you love culture and art do explore the hollow chediya hiding within its belly many artefacts pertaining to Buddhism.

2

Visit Richmond Castle

Of all the favoured things to do in Kalutara a visit to Richmond Castle comes highly recommended. Built at the beginning of the century this majestic structure once was the property of local philanthropist Padikara Mudali Nanayakkara Rajawasala Appuhamilage Don Arthur De Silva Wijesinghe Siriwardena; quite a mouthful and elaborate name that is well reflected in the structure of Richmond Castle. Sitting on the summit of a hill within a 42 acre estate; it consists of 99 doors and 34 beautifully decorated windows complete with elegant cut glass panes. No expense was spared during construction with 2 shiploads of Burmese teak being brought in for the construction of this building. The place which once served as a circuit bungalow for the British colonists is now a top tourist attraction as well as sanctuary for under privileged children.

3

Enjoy the Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery

A short tuk tuk ride for guests at Anantara Kalutara Resort the Kosgoda Turtle Hatchery takes every measure to protect and assist the regeneration of Sri Lanka's sea turtle population. Eggs are carefully gathered and hatched after which the babies when ready are released to sea. A visit will enlighten you on the conservation projects taking place as well as let you observe the turtles in many stages of development. Some of the permanent residents consist of maimed and deformed turtles unable to make it on their own.

4

Boat Rides on the Kalu Ganga

'Ganga' is the local name for river and the Kalu, once an important route in the spice trade has lent its name to the town flourishing within its folds. Many Kalutara resorts offer boat rides on this verdant river rewarding nature lovers with sights of verdant banks, rustic villages and indigenous wildlife such as water monitors and birds.

5

Check Out the Moonstone Mine

The moonstone cherished as a semi-precious gem is mined in abundance at a factory in Meetiyagoda; a suburb not far from Kalutara. According to local belief this stretch of land has been blessed by the moon god to yield from its folds a milky white stone that gleams and glitters when polished. You can visit the mine and actually amble along the dark narrow shafts for a taste of how the stones are mined.