Tourism at Arugam Bay should be sustainable


The surfing season in Arugam Bay starts in May and the thousands of people who are dependant on the tourism industry in this Eastern coastal village in Sri Lanka eagerly await the arrival of the highest number of tourists this year. The tourism industry in the country is booming after the end of terrorism in 2009 and Arugam Bay is now ready to regain its full potential.

Arugam Bay i How much unisom to overdose s one of the world’s top 10 surf locations, known for its fantastic waves, which attract surfers from all over the world. The best time for surfing here is between May and November when strong winds are offshore for at least the first half of the day.

There are only a few tourists at Arugam Bay

However, some small scale hoteliers, tour guides and shop owners are disappointed because still there are only a few tourists at Arugam Bay. They have several reasons for the delay in tourist arrivals. Some of them believe that the IPL cricket series in India is one reason and that tourist arrivals will increase after the games are over.

A lodge owner said that a large number of local tourists visiting here has caused various issues and as a result the beach is now less attractive to foreign tourists. He said that some drunken local visitors harass foreigners and as a result foreign tourists are reluctant to come to the beach during the weekends. The officer in-charge of the police post at Arugam Bay beach said there were no complaints. However, the police regularly patrol the area and is vigilant on such developments.

A. Dixcey, a teacher from the Isle of Wight in England was ready to leave for surfing in the early morning. The only thing she is worried about is the difficulty she faces while travelling by public transport. Hospitality of the locals, quality of the service in hotels she stays in is excellent and cost affordable, she said.

The basic infrastructure in the area has improved making access to this remote coastal fishing village easy.

Reduction in travel time is unbelievable. It took only 40 minutes to travel from Siyambalanduwa to Arugam Bay and one-and a half-hours from Moneragala town.

The longest STF check point at Siyambalanduwa junction during the conflict era is no more and there are no obstacles for travellers other than traffic police whoare vigilant on high speed drivers.

Water supply and electricity are also restored but some hoteliers said the frequent interruption to the supply caused issues for them. They said these issues affect their service and they cannot keep their clients happy. As the number of tourists visiting here increases, environment issues emerge. Hoteliers said that the local authority is not efficient to keep the area clean and garbage collection does not take place properly.

To make Arugam Bay an attractive tourist destination the local authority needs to do something more than what the ordinary Municipal Council or Pradeshiya Sabha does.

There are no facilities for the large number of local tourists visiting. Most of them visit for a sea bath. Public toilets, fresh water and houses are needed for them, because they cannot afford hotels and lodges. Most of them do not stay the night over.

K.H. Chandrasena, the owner of the Sashini Beach Resort said that foreign tourists who come here for surfing usually stay for a long period of time. Some of them look for low cost lodgings and therefore cabanas at his resort are fully occupied during the season. He runs the hotel without professional staff.

He said that most of the small hoteliers are reluctant to invest money to improve their hotels due to construction restriction limits enforced by the government.

The government has banned construction in 50m limit from the shore, but this is not yet enforced. There are hundreds of small lodges in the area but only a few high end hotels.

Accommodation facilities have to be developed and there should be regulations and standards for these small hotels and lodges as the quality of the rooms, meals and services are extremely poor.

To meet the government’s targets in tourism special attention has to be paid to the many opportunities and issues in each tourist destination. Arugam Bay is a unique place and issues highlighted by stakeholders should be taken seriously by the authorities to make tourism at Arugam Bay sustainable.

source: Sildalis buy

2 Responses to “Tourism at Arugam Bay should be sustainable”

  • True there were many isreal visiter in abay when I was seemed to be a rough life in isreal and abay seemed to be a place we all can escape from the negative issues
    around the world .I hope abay can remain a place were all are welcome and we can put aside were we are from and enjoy the waves together

  • the main reason no one wants to go or return to abay is that its no secret that its full of and is been bought up by isreal surfers who treat the place like the gaza strip everyone
    knows this that why surfers prefer to go elseware.

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