Most visitors to Sri Lanka would have heard of Ella, Colombo, Galle, or Kandy; these famous destinations in Sri Lanka receive the lion’s share of visitors, but if it’s your first time in Sri Lanka you should know that despite its relatively small size there are a ton of things to do and see around the island.
I am going to share a lesser-known place here it is called Kalpitiya. Kalpitiya is one of the most attractive places for travelers It is a hub for adventure sports and could be a fantastic destination for anyone looking for an off-the-beaten-track experience in Sri Lanka. Here’s what you need to know about Kalpitiya before you go.
Kalpitiya is located in the Puttalam district approximately 4 hours by car north of Colombo. It is bordered by Puttalam lagoon and Dutch Bay on one side and the Gulf of Mannar on the other, which makes it a very popular destination for people who love water sports like kite surfing, windsurfing, kayaking, and jet skiing.
The best time to visit Kalpitiya
The best season to visit Kalpitiya is between May to September (kitesurfing season) and November to February (winter kitesurfing season and dolphin watching season). Outside of these two seasons, Kalpitiya can be quieter than usual and the weather might be more humid and stickier.
The best things to do in Kalpitiya
Kalpitiya is one of the most popular places for Kite surfing, in Sri Lanka. Kite-surfing is basically strapping yourself to a giant kite, and being dragged on a surfboard over the sea, by the wind. There are two main places where you could practice Kitesurfing in Kalpitiya One is called Wellai island, and the other is a thin long Sand Route on the west end of the Kalpitiya lagoon. The ideal time for Kitesurfing is May to September when there is a windy environment.
Kayaking and canoeing on Kalpitiya lagoon, or on the ocean can either be a lazy, tranquil day or an energetic workout. Life jackets must be worn at all times and don’t forget your hat, sunglasses, and sun protection. You can kayak any time of the year on the lagoon. The best time on the sea is November to mid-April.
Dolphin & Whale Watching
If you are up to watching these enigmatic creatures of the sea, then the best time to visit Kalpitiya Beach is from December up to mid-April, when the Whales occasionally come up. If you are like enough you can spot big schools of dolphins. It is a truly spectacular sight to behold, the adorable creatures swimming alongside your boat.
Navy personnel of Kalpitiya take you on tour around the old Dutch Fort, telling stories of history, and taking you back to the colonial Dutch era. The Dutch Reformed Church is situated between the town of Kalpitiya and the Dutch Fort and was built by the Dutch in 1706. It is one of the oldest Protestant churches in Sri Lanka. Free entry into the Dutch Church and times of entry is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Both places are of great interest and importance during the colonial era in Sri Lanka.
Paddleboarding on the lagoon, or on the ocean, can be great fun in many ways; sightseeing, exploring mangroves, fishing, and even paddleboard yoga! Paddleboarding is an all-around body fitness exercise with balance and paddling at the same time. You can paddleboard on Kalpitiya lagoon when there is no wind.
Bar Reef sanctuary is a highly biodiverse region and the marine life includes various creatures like Manta Rays, turtles, and Reef Sharks. The best time to go for scuba diving and snorkeling is during the months of November until early May when the action of the southwest monsoon is not prevalent, otherwise, these activities may become dangerous.
Boat and canoe rides across the Kalpitiya Lagoon are a good way to relax while you enjoy the scenic vistas of the water. A nice ride along the water is the most pleasant way to explore the waterfront of Kalpitiya Beach.
Situated close to Kalpitiya Beach, This Beach is a nature lovers’ haven. Here, at Alankuda, you can take boat rides to watch some of the magnificent dolphin pods. This beautiful natural retreat is also a dream destination for a Twitcher. Bird-watching excursions are arranged accompanied by local experts and you can go on a nice bird-watching tour, spotting numerous native bird species.
Personally, I recommend visiting Kalpitiya if you want to learn to kitesurf, have more than 2 to 3 weeks in Sri Lanka, or if it is not your first time on the island. If you are looking for a quiet vacation and understand that facilities may be different from what is available in established tourist towns then you are in a better position to make the most of your time in Kalpitiya.