Thrills

     Though not always recognized as such Sri Lanka is in fact a thrill seekers paradise. There are so many activities on offer that visitors might find it hard to pack it all into just one holiday. All the more reason to return to this beautiful island that has camping, trekking, kayaking and canoeing, while you can also enjoy the exhilarating experience of a hot air balloon ride. For an adrenaline rush with a difference try wave riding or paragliding.

Being an island it is easy to experience the country by cycling and backpacking which is a cost effective way to enjoy Sri Lanka. When it comes to island holidays, Sri Lanka is one of the forerunners, with its warm people, sunny climate and exciting adventures. Come visit Sri Lanka, the wonder of Asia.

Whale And Dolphin Watching
     The ever smiling, mischievous dolphins will put on a show while some of the oldest and the largest sea creatures, the humpback and the blue whales, will nonchalantly  glide past you, when you embark on a whale/ dolphin watching excursion off the Southern, Eastern or the West coast of Sri Lanka. The ideal locations for whale watching would be Dondra Point (accessible from Galle, Hikkaduwa and Mirissa) and Trincomalee while the sea off Kalpitiya teems with an abundance of dolphins.

Deep-Sea Fishing
As the waves plummet the sides of the boat and the sea birds call above your head, the ocean’s scent and the thrill of the chase is exhilarating.

Shark, Marlin, Tuna, the big names in deep-water game fishing roam Sri Lanka’s deep seas. Closer to shore the calmer waters teem with a variety of species, and the hospitable local fishermen are only too willing to invite visitors to join them on their daily or nightly excursions off the coastline.

Swimming
     The golden shores of Sri Lanka are the most idyllic in the tropics. With 1,300 kilometers of palm-fringed beach right around the island, swimming in the ocean is a thrill that must be indulged in. The beaches of the west and south coasts are ideal for serious and recreational swimmers between April and November. For those seeking an added bonus, a swim in the Southern coast of Hikkaduwa might result in a once in a lifetime thrill of swimming with the rare leatherback or olive ridley turtles when they approach the shore at high tide.

Diving
     The ocean around Sri Lanka whispers of tales bygone, ones of regal maritime visits, of bandits and pirates and journeys of explorers and spice merchants.  As you plunge into the warm waters and dive below, these stories come to life. The crystal clear waters of the Indian Ocean with a visibility of 20 meters (65ft)  provide perfect conditions for diving.  With wrecks as dated as the 18th Century dotting the seas, deep reefs and reef walls provide enthralling explorations for scuba divers. For the less adventurous on-shore coral reefs are ideal for snorkelling. The abundant marine life found around the island is surpassed only at Hikkaduwa in the southern coast where the reef is thought to contain more species of fish than the Great Barrier Reef.

Surfing
     Surf’s up in Sri Lanka! The east coast’s Arugam Bay is the best -kept secret among serious surfers, through gaining popularity worldwide not only for its waves but also for the pristine and beautiful beaches that surround it. Sri Lanka is a surfer’s paradise anytime of the year. Once the season ends at Arugam Bay, at another surfing hotspot especially for recreational surfers the season begins, along the southern coast in Hikkaduwa, Wewala and Narigama.

White Water Rafting
     After navigating the Virgin’s Breast, you move through another couple of rapids before hitting the Killer Fall, where a sudden 90-degree drop and plenty of churning water really gets the adrenalin going. As the rapids dwindle to a patch of calm waters, the rafters are encouraged to jump in and body raft, just going with the flow past the riverine scenery of towering stands of bamboo, fruit trees and palms. And at the end of it all a lavish Sri Lankan buffet awaits. This is the typical fare of a white water rafting experience that is refreshingly Sri Lankan.

Rock Climbing
With a large mountainous region in the centre of southern Sri Lanka, and with huge boulder outcrops in countless areas, the island is ideal for rope sports.

Visitors eager to experience a range of activities while discovering some of the most scenic landscapes in the country will find an increasing number of climbing circuits being developed. For example, a climbing trip in the hill country around Hatton, an area with amazing rocks, waterfalls, reservoirs and tea plantations rivals any adventure trail around the world.

Ballooning
As the multi-coloured hot-air balloon drifts silently above the forest, adventure takes on a whole new meaning.

Startled by the noise of a sudden burst of gas keeping the balloon aloft, a couple of peacocks take flight directly below the balloon’s basket, their outrageously long iridescent blue and emerald tail feathers streaming behind like a psychedelic jet stream. Several deer dart nervously across a clearing below, but the small herd of elephants continues feeding, utterly unfazed by this aerial intruder.

Balloons that travel with the wind, make for one of the most surreal  and tranquil sensations of flight. Following the initial adrenaline rush of the take off, one could settle down to absorb the wonder of the colorful earth below.

Hiking And Trekking
     Take a demanding trek high in the mountain rainforest of the Knuckles Range, and see the valuable spice - cardamom - growing in the forest, catch sight of rare orchids and birds, and enjoy the exhilaration of exploring spots where few have been before.  Traverse virtually unexplored country in the southeast, past the renowned Yala National Park where leopards prowl and elephants roam, past the bird-rich Kumana wetlands and into a region where literally hundreds of ruined temples and maybe even cities lie awaiting discovery in the forests.
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