Thorn Tree on AbaY

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Posted: 26 Feb 2007
Arugam Bay Ayurslim cheap

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I am arriving in Sri Lanka with my boyfriend in late March and was hoping to travel over to Arugam Bay for a couple of weeks to surf…the lonely planet site states that this is a no go area as the risk of terroism is too high. Is this true? Is it really a no go area where no one is? If not, are there any recommendations for accommodation, night spots etc ?

Thank you

Posted: 26 Feb 2007
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I have not been to Arugam Bay yet but plan to spend some time there in June.

According to this blog (it is a promotional site written by the local hotel association) it is safe and there is nothing to worry about. They do complain however about a dramatic lack of visitors and misguided tsunami relief efforts.

I have also checked a few other forums for the latest on Abay and don`t see any reason to doubt that it is very safe at the moment. However, there was a rare incident involving a tourist in nearby PottuVille a couple of weeks ago.

If you go, could you please give an update (PM?) regarding accommodation, restaurants, night life, prices etc?

Posted: 26 Feb 2007
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I havn’t been there so far, but according to the lates news from Sri lanka its safe at the moment.
I’ll send you a PM with more details.
Posted: 01 Mar 2007
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I live in Ampara working for an INGO and spend many weekends in Arugam Bay. The place is fine to visit, and a bit of a gem cause no one else goes there. You will see soldiers with big guns in nearby towns (not in ABay), and hear of the odd incident (although the last one was an Elephant killed a farmer) but that’s no different to Colombo. I still find London easily more dangerous.

A’bay is a bit more like the real Sri Lanka, its chilled and more family like. Oh and you’ll get to meet Sri Lankans who dont just work in the hospitality industry. Theres community based eco tours to go on such as lagoon tours (spot the crocs), sea safaris(sharks, turtles, whales dolphins) and its good for surfing, boogie boarding and fishing etc. Oh, and you will see Elephants, often we cannot leave A’Bay because the Elephants have boxed us in in both drections! (They are dangerous!) Facilities are far less developed and still tsunami battered but your phone will work and you’ll taste the best bbq sear fish fresh from the see that day…evening is beach fires and arrack or hammock and a good book!

How to get there? From Colombo head to Moneragala and change bus to Pottuvil. To make it in one day leave no later than 6.30am from the bus station at Pettah (or the private stand next door) you’ll be in Abay for 5pm. From Kandy go to Siambalanduwa (5/6hrs) and catch the bus to Pottuvl. Last Siam bus to Pottuvil is 3pm due to security restrictions on travel. Single women travellers be careful at Monaragala station its fully of creepy guys who will like to made obscene gestures and follow you relentlessly.

Hope that helps.



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