20 May 2014

Beautiful Kalpitiya

Back in 2011 and my 1st year of backpacking somewhere far from my continent Europe, with dear friend Marta...

Sri Lanka is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. I have had my 1st fresh coconut there, slept in a worst guest house ever, felt real humidity and met so many nice people on my travels.
If I have to choose what was my highlight, that would be Kalpitiya and also Sri Pada (known as Adams Peak).
I will share my experience about Kalpitiya this time.

After 3 days of meeting the local life and how the things are going on Sri Lanka, in small fisherman town Negombo, Marta and I decided to go by the west coast. We were googling a lot about Lanka and from all beauty we got so fascinated by Kalpitiya.
Kalpitiya is located in Puttalam distric, North Western province of Sri Lanka. It is known for its serene beauty.
North of Chilaw (and about 8km before reaching the town of Puttalam), a side road branches off west, threading its way across the beautiful, windswept Kalpitiya peninsula, fringed with unspoilt beaches and bounded on opposite sides by sea and lagoon. The peninsula’s considerable tourist potential (especially given its relative proximity to the international airport) remains largely unexploited as yet, and government plans to establish a $4 billion tourist zone near Kalpitiya town, complete with luxury resort, golf course and airstrip, have thankfully so far come to naught. For the time being, tourism remains low-key, centred on the marvellous cluster of eco-resorts at beautiful Alankuda Beach.

It was 2am when Criss (our host) woke us up. It was wet, sticky and hot morning in Negombo. 2:30am the bus was stopping here. 
Still sleepy Marta and I were on the main road, sitting on our backpacks. The bus showed up on time, we said hi to Criss and for the 1st time met craziness of a "morning music raping". The bus was in a bad condition, like all buses there. Ticket price very cheap. Up from a driver seat flashing lights all over with all gods (Hindu, Buddhist and Christian together). But what we really could not understand is very loud folk Indian music coming from a bad speakers like its a wedding, at 3am. 
The bus was stopping literally every 15min to pick up passengers or for conductor and driver to brush their teeth in the middle of nowhere. It was funny I have to admit. Landscapes on the way were amazingly beautiful with all those palm trees by the coast.


Main roads pretty much in bad conditions, most of them dirt roads, add to all of that monsoon rain and humidity... After 3 hours of ride I felt sick, hoping we'll arrive soon.    
Around 7am we arrived. Bus station was literally in mud. As nobody spoke English, we got it, it was our final stop.


Tuk-tuk is well known as taxi (all over Asia). -It's gonna be fun- Marta said stopping one ricksha. As we expected, no English speaking one :) 
Somehow, we agreed the price and where to take us. Hotel, international word for money. 
Guided by Lonely planet we were lucky to find backpack area in Negombo. This time, it was an adventure since not even in a guide book existed any info about Kalpitiya. No tourists or un-commercial travelers on this part of Lanka. 
1st guest house asked for 2000 rupee with no barging, 2nd one even 2200. Our budget was 1000 max. 3rd one was really spooky. The owner looked like a rapist from some horror movie, big bald headed guy. Price 2000 aswell. We were wondering, are they really that crazy? Having this high prices and empty rooms.. 
Desperate is a way we felt. -Please take us to some room, any room, cheap one. Do you have a brother, cousin? Do they have any room for rent? - I was almost crying and hoping that tuk tuk driver will understand anything I am saying but hotel. -My brother- he said. 
We were not sure if he understood what I was asking but this guy took us to some fisherman village. We stopped near by the ocean, just next to some blue house on the beach. He called someone in a foreign language. A young man showed up.  Hi, My name is Shaun. - he said. 

Blue house

Blue house by the ocean

He said they (his family) don't have room for rent but they can help us. In a small unfinished place (room) at the beach side they put a double bed in, mosquito net and showed us where the toilet is. 
They did not want money, they really wanted to help us.

 Our guest room

This fisherman family with a big heart shared with us everything, a house, food and I don't have words to describe their hospitality. 

Shaun and I

We could not secure our room, but we felt so safe there. We did not have to lock up anything. Nobody touched our things. 
Afternoon we spent on a beach, walking and swimming. We played with local kids and learned from them how to play cricket :) Was so nice, peaceful ... 


Marta and I

Well hello there!

Local people always friendly

Kalpitiya <3

Local life




Cricket time

Local boys

Marta with boys

My favorite cricket player 

Another new friend


Beach was amazing! Best beach on Sri Lanka. Long, sandy, wild... Untouched by the human technology and commercial tourism. I hope it will stay that way long time.  



Considering to local people, this is not iguana, it is a normal lizard  :)

I really can see beauty in anything <3


Late afternoon local kids came to us, as we were sitting on the beach, and cheerfully screamed: "Come, come to see the big fish!" We knew that Kalpitiya is also known as a place for whale spotting so we could guess what "the big fish" meant. The fact we could not guess is that "the big fish" could be dead. Poor little baby whale found on a local beach stranded. :(  I did not want to stay there seeing how local people putting dead giant fish on the truck. We left. Later we heard that is not happening often. 


Sunset and dusk we spent in front of our room, at the beach, talking with Shaun.

Shaun and Marta

Todays catch :)

Now, when I am thinking about this beautiful place I wish we could've stayed longer there. Thoughts about Shaun's family and everything those people did for us by having a big heart made this whole story and experience so positive. 

Shauns mom and sister 


We choose to leave other day afternoon. We did not want to bother them more. Of course we left some money. symbolically, even though they did not want to accept.  
Changing 2 buses, arriving in Puttalam reminded us about an extra mosquito protection as the dengue fever is well known in that town (not saying all the time, when we were there I meant). 
It was a great experience that will stay in my heart forever. I am 100% sure I'll be back there one day. 
For all of you future travelers, if you choose to visit Sri Lanka make sure you put on your list Kalpitiya, I guarantee you'll be amazed as I was and still am :) 
Safe travels.