Everything you Need to Know about Beruwela - Sri Lanka
Located in the southwest of Sri Lanka, Beruwela is a charming coastal town. It is marked as the first Muslim settlement or port in the country and was set up by Arab traders in the 8th century.
Since it is just 56 km south of Colombo and has a good beach it is a popular excursion destination. The recent development of resorts in the area has added to its popularity.
Msjid-ul-Abrar is the oldest mosque in Sri Lanka and does merit a visit. It is also known as the Kachimalani Mosque and is a popular destination for Muslims during the month of Ramadan.
The Giant Buddha Temple
This is an appealing attraction. After all, the huge structure is, to say the least, impressive and a significant holy place for the local Buddhists. Located at the Kande Vihare temple the statue is over 160 feet tall and is in the Bhoomi Sparsha Mudra, which translates as 'touching the ground to ask the Earth to witness the Buddha’s enlightenment'.
Sri Pushparam Temple
Another nice place to visit. You can watch prayer flags flutter on the trees in the open courtyard and there's a very nice ambience in the temple surroundings.
Spending time at the beach is an obvious but immensely enjoyable attraction and it's the ideal location for a relaxed holiday with sun and sand. The clear skies and azure blue sea will make you feel that you truly are in a tropical paradise and the swaying palms just add to the feeling of well being.
Beruwela also has a harbour and you can pay a nominal fee to walk around it and explore. It is not for the faint hearted as the catch of the day will involve plenty of blood on the ground and a fishy smell that can stay with you even after you come away and have a bath. So if you dislike either stay away but if you want to buy the freshest possible lobster and seafood head here. Or you can take a trip to the lighthouse situated on an island nearby. The boat ride is a short one and the view from the top of the lighthouse is panoramic.
If you are into diving and snorkeling visit the coral garden just off the coast. Make sure you pick reliable help for your underwater adventure if you are going for the first time.
Yala National Park
You can also plan an excursion to Yala National Park in the south. It will take not more than a day for the full excursion so set one day aside for it. You can get a taste of the local wildlife as the elephants, crocodiles, jackals, boars, snakes and numerous birds make the visit memorable. Undoubtedly it is the elephants that will hold your attention here.
Beruwela Restaurants and Nightlife
As such there is no nightlife in Beruwela. The beachfront has a few cafes which are reasonable enough and provide fresh seafood. Ypsylon is a hotel with a great garden and a good restaurant located on Beruwela Beach. The Sunflower Restaurant on the beach itself just at Daddy’s Corner is also good and they even take advance orders in the morning for your meals later in the day and the fresh lobster is great here. Eden Resorts are a good place to visit, although they are marginally more expensive than the beach cafes.
There is a persistent beach sales force at work trying to sell you everything from doormats to leather goods. The locals are very determined but certainly not rude or violent and for many of them this is the only means of supporting their families. After the tsunami and widespread destruction many people lost their traditional jobs and took to selling items to tourists.