Negombo is a place most people just drive past while on their way to the airport and miss out on arguably the most authentic Sri Lankan experience.
- Sunset at the beach
So while in this tiny beach town, the days are very hot and sticky. Head out to the beach post 16:30 HRS and you’ll get a fabulous sunset while sitting on the soft sand. You’ll see the sky changing from orange to red before if finally dips into the ocean.
- Beach snacks
Like any other tourist beach, Negombo also has its fair share of beach stalls which actually sell a lot of unique food products. From popcorn, ice cream, local fried bhaji for the vegetarians, for the seafood lovers there are a lot of options from crabs to lobsters and even grilled prawns. It’s worth trying out the crab and grilled prawns.
- Rent a cycle
Nearly every guest house, homestay and hotel in Negombo has a cycle you can rent and pedal around. This is surely the most efficient and economical way of getting around this tiny town.
- Try the seafood
Don’t leave Negombo without having the seafood. You’ll find seafood preparation of all kinds, from local Sri Lankan style fish curry and rice to more western pizzas and burgers. There are even Chinese, Sushi and Thai seafood options along the road. If you like seafood, then please don’t hesitate to go all out.
Along the beach road, there is plenty of fancy souvenir and clothing shops selling a host of things. It’s a good place to buy gifts for your loved ones. Bargaining is a skill which will come very handy while shopping in this market. Fridge magnets and leather articles are worth considering while at Negombo.
- Visit the Catholic church
Our Lady of Snows Church is just across the road and for those looking to find some inner peace, this is the place to go to. This Gothic-style themed church is worth a visit for the architecture.
- Evening walks
Post sunset, the humidity drops drastically and the entire beach road lights up with restaurants, hotels and shops. It’s the perfect time to go out and explore the place for food to get a first-hand experience.
- Experience a homestay
Even though Negombo is not yet a must-do on the Sri Lanka travel map, if you’re planning on staying a night here, then a homestay experience is highly recommended. The locals are extremely warm.
- Stay a couple of nights
Negombo is the kind place which you need to grow into to get a feel and experience. Just coming for a night halt on your way back to the airport is the worst way to experience the place. Stay a couple of nights and you’ll begin to love the place. It’s one of those laid back, lazy beach towns that every backpacker will like.
- Dinner at the beach
Most of the fancy restaurants have two kinds of sitting arrangements, one half is the regular cafe-style setup and the other half is table and chairs on the beach with a candle. The latter is an absolute must if you’re travelling with your better half. It’s a great way to end or start your journey through this island country.
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