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Updated by Roland Lefevre (Uditha Dharmawardhane) on May 07, 2015
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Best Places to Visit in Hikkaduwa - Top Attractions in Beach Hub Hikkaduwa

As Sri Lanka's beach party capital, Hikkaduwa is home to some of the southern coastlines' most intriguing attractions. From turtle farms to stunning coral reefs the top highlights are as follows.

1

Turtle Hatcheries

Ideal for nature lovers and marine life enthusiasts as well as conservationists alike the opportunity to visit and take part in Sri Lanka's turtle conservation efforts is open to all visitors touring Hikkaduwa. Facing extinction due to hunting and environmental causes sea turtles has been a part of Hikkaduwa's marine eco system since time immemorial. Villagers in and near Hikkaduwa trade in turtle eggs found on the beach to aid conservation efforts and visitors can visit a hatchery and watch how the conservationists protect the eggs and the hatchlings from a period of up to 2 months till the creatures are ready to be released back to the ocean. Visitors can witness the hatchery inhabitants and get up close and personal with these endangered animals while on holiday in Hikkaduwa.

2

Hikkaduwa Coral Reef

Undoubtedly it's most celebrated and coveted natural attribute Hikkaduwa owes its reputation and popularity as a beach hub to the breathtaking coral reef network that liters its sea bed. Travellers from around the country and across the world visit the seaside hamlet to explore the breathtaking coral gardens that lies beneath the ocean's surface at Hikkaduwa. Taking a tour on board a glass bottomed boat is the best way to uncover the underwater landscapes and the flora and fauna that inhabits the spaces while remaining dry while snorkellers and divers are welcome to explore what lies beneath on deep sea exploration tours. Visitors based in Chaaya Tranz Hikkaduwa or other strategically located Hikkaduwa hotels can book a glass bottom boat tour through the hotel.

3

Hikkaduwa Lake

Another scenic hotspot in the seaside resort haven visitors to Hikkaduwa should not miss an opportunity to witness the glorious Hikkaduwa Lake in all its splendour. Canoe rides across the lake are a popular past time among locals and foreign tourists in the area as visitors can explore the captivating natural environment on a leisurely cruise. Serving as the habitat of many a water bird, visitors will also spot monkeys, monitor lizards and local fisherman casting nets to catch prawns.

4

Water Sports Hotspots

Active travellers touring the sandy confines of Hikkaduwa on the other hand should also make time to stopover at its water sports hubs. Renowned as a snorkeller's and diver's dream come true water sports season officially kicks off between the months of November and April each year. Visitors who wish to learn the basics of both snorkelling and diving can also take lessons from the many PADI certified instructors and diving institutions in Hikkaduwa. Wreck divers can marvel at the underwater grave of not one but two well documented shipwrecks that took place in the late 19th century identified as The Rangoon and The Earl of Shaftesbury.

Wave riders on the other hand can hit the waves at Hikkaduwa's hottest surfing spots where killer breaks are expected during the peak surfing period. Board rentals and water sports centers are also available across Hikkaduwa to aid visitors find activities to suit their budget and needs.

5

Hikkaduwa National Park

Sprawled across the northern fringes of Hikkaduwa beach the Hikkaduwa National Park is a protected marine life heartland in the area. Inhabited by countless marine species and underwater flora the venue is a veritable museum of marine biology enthusiasts and nature lovers.

6

Seenigama Viharaya

Perhaps the most iconic cultural hotspot in Hikkaduwa no visit to the beach Mecca would be complete at the Seenigama Viharaya. Located 2km north of the heart of Hikkaduwa town the religious epicenter is a sacred space frequented by pilgrims from around the country.