Best Beaches of the World: Tangalla Bay Beach, Sri Lanka
"One of the finest bays in Sri Lanka" R. L. Brohier: Seeing Ceylon
"Beautiful Bay" Bella Wolf: How to see Ceylon (1914)
Along the coast: Goyambokka Bay Beach, Pallikaduwa Bay Beach,
Tangalle Bay, Tangalla Harbour, Medakettiya Beach, Medila Beach
Just inland: Matara road, Tangalla Main road, Tangalla bridge
over River Kirama, Hambantota road, Kalametiya Bird sanctuary, Rekawa
Sea Turtle Nesting Beach
The uncrowded small resort of Tangalla, 295km (122 miles) from
Colombo, 48km (30km) east of
Matara, & roughly midway along the south
coast, is one of the most pleasant places in the region for a lazy beach
holiday. If you wish a blast with watersports, shops, restaurants &
nightlife, Tangalla isn't the place to come; Bentota Bay Beach Resort
is. But if your are in search of great expanses of beautiful golden
sandy beach to crash out on, you are on the right beach. Facing east,
the small town centre straddles a freshwater lagoon where a small river
flows into the sea, with a fishing harbour at its mouth. North of the
harbour are villages of Medaketiya & Medilla, To the south, beyond a low
headland, are villages of Goyambokka and Pallikaduwa.
Tangalle town itself is situated just back from a "projecting rock" from
which, it is said, the towns name Tangalle is derived. The town, in
spite of being beside the bay, fishing harbour & busy market has a
relaxed atmosphere with some reminders of Dutch days, including the Rest
House. It's one of the oldest rest houses in the Sri Lanka, originally
built, as a plaque on the front steps indicates, by the Dutch in 1774.
For its size, the town has a relaxed atmosphere with a busy market &
many reminders of the Dutch heritage.
Tangalle actually encompasses adjoining villages. To the west are the
picturesque upmarket villages of Goyambokka & Pallikaduwa. And to the
north, along the stretched arc of bay are Medaketiya and Medilla.
Goyambokka & Pallikaduwa Twin Bay Beaches
Made up of a sequence of beautiful rocky caves, the twin bays to the
west of Tangalle town in Goyambokka & Pallikaduwa are picturesque
upmarket villages in sharp contrast with the flatter coastline to the
north. Some guesthouses, located on the hillsides with spectacular sea
views, have their own private access to individual beaches of rich sand.
The village of Goyambokka, which sits atop the area's loveliest stretch
of coast, with a superb rocky promontory flanked by two gorgeous
beaches-that to the west of the headland, popularly known as Silent
Beach, is an absolute picture.
The bay, just on the town side of the Tangalla Bay Hotel, is probably
the most sheltered spot. Next to Tangalla Bay, right beside the Rest
House is a tiny bay with a roped-off swimming area that is shallow &
A series of spotless cabanas within an area of land flanked by the
The safest place for swimming is in Medaketiya, where most of the budget
accommodation is located along a beach road lined with guest houses.
From here, in the shelter of over hanging palms is an ideal stretch
beach for relaxation with a fine view of the harbour, many fishing boats
& shimmering sea.
From Medilla beach to Rekawa beach
This stretch of palm fringed beach is the most enticing. There are
shelves of rocks & coral in the sea, visible from the shore, which
create pockets of safe swimming. A natural swimming pool past Nature
Resort is safe most of the time for swimming.
Read more: Rekawa
Hoo-maniya blowhole at Kudawela
Around 7km west of Tangalla is the fishing village of Kuduwela. Therein
located Hoo-maniya blowhole. The fanciful name derives from the low,
booming "Hoo" sound that precedes the jets of water. The blowhole is
formed from a deep, narrow cleft in the cliff, around 20m deep & a meter
wide, which funnels plumes of water up into the air in great jets by
some terrific action of water pressure. It's most impressive during the
monsoon - May to Nov.
Kalametiya Bird sanctuary
20km beyond Tangalle, Kalametiya Bird Sanctuary comprises an area of
coastal lagoons & mangroves which is rich in marine & birdlife, similar
to that found in Bundala and best seen from November to March. Access to
the sanctuary is from the village of Hungama. No structured program to
Mawella, 6km west of Tangalla, this stretch of beach is coastline's
best-kept secret. Away from the busy main road, the 3km long, very wide
beach offers safe swimming.
Mulgirigala ( Mulkirigala) rock monastery
16km north of Tangalla lies the remarkable temple-monastery of
Mulkirigala, the only monument in the south to rival the great ancient
Buddhist sites of the Cultural Triangle.
on photo to enlarge