A small town and a popular beach resort in the Southern region of Sri Lanka; Dickwella boasts great surf spots and sandy beaches. With the materialization of hotels, guesthouses and chic restaurants, Dickwella experienced a boom in tourism, and is now a somewhat popular tourist attraction. Dickwella is widely known for its beaches like all other major cities in the Southern region. The Dickwella beach protected by sand-bars, reefs and rocks is perfect to swim in. Visitors to Dickwella can enjoy some quiet and peace away from the crowded beach resorts. Even though the beach is not crowded and very busy, the town is the polar opposite of the quiet beach, with a large market, a handful of supermarkets, a few banks and ATMs in the vicinity.
The beach of Hiriketiya is a small bay in which visitors can either surf in or just loosen up and unwind. This horseshoe shaped bay is a hidden gem that is slowly attracting visitors from around the world. Stilt fishermen hard at work is an enthralling sight that cannot be missed.
Dickwella is also religiously important for the Buddhists because the largest seated statue of the Lord Buddha, which is 50 meters high, is located in Dickwella. This statue is situated within the premises of the Wewurukannala Viharaya, a few kilometers away from the town. Construction of this statue was wrapped up in 1970. At the rear of this statue there is an eight storeyed building with sketches portraying various incidents from the life of the Buddha.
The world’s second biggest blowhole in the world; namely Hummanaya, is located just outside Dickwella. It also happens to be the only blowhole in Sri Lanka. The water shoots up through the narrow crack amidst the expanse of rocky cliffs.
The swing located next to the Dickwella Beach Resort is yet another attraction. This swing provides perfect photo ops and is undoubtedly a thrilling experience to fly out towards the ocean.
Aside from these major attractions, visitors to Dickwella can also visit the Udawalave and Yala national parks because the location of this city makes it convenient. A visit to Dondra point (the southernmost point in Sri Lanka) and Devinuwara are a must. Visitors can also engage in whale watching, diving and snorkeling while in Dickwella. Rekawa; a picturesque and old fashioned town can easily be accessed from Dickwella and visitors have the opportunity to engage in bird watching and water sports and also to pay a visit to the renowned Turtle Hatchery.
In short, Dickwella is a hidden treasure yet to be discovered by many.
Dickwella is historically important because of the Wewurukannala Viharaya and the 50 meters high statue of the Lord Buddha which also happens to be the tallest seated statue of the Buddha. Construction of this statue had finished in 1970 and there is an eight storeyed building behind this imposing statue that has paintings depicting various incidents from the life of the Buddha. Visitors have the ability to view these comic strip paintings of Lord Buddha’s life.
The Boxing Day Tsunami caused considerable destruction to this small coastal town. Since then the infrastructure has been reconstructed.
How to get there
By road: driving or taxiing is without a shadow of doubt the most leisurely and relaxed mode of travel with the exception of flying. The quickest route is via the Southern Expressway (E01). This journey covers a distance of approximately 175 kilometers and takes roughly 2 hours and 45 minutes. Another possible route is via the A8 route (Ratnapura- Horana- Panadura highway). Travelling by this route would be considered somewhat time consuming because it takes over five hours.
By bus: the bus ride from the Colombo Bastian Mawatha bus terminal to the Matara bus station will take approximately 5 hours and ten minutes. From Matara you would have to take a Tangalle bound or Kataragama bound bus and get off at Dickwella. Another option is to taxi to Dickwella from Matara. Traveling by bus is an economical mode of travel.
By train: there are no direct trains to Dickwella. If you wish to travel by train the best option would be to catch a train to Matara (Kamburugamuwa station). This will take approximately 3 hours, because the train makes short stops at 11 stations on the way. The short distance from Matara to Dickwella takes only 30 minutes by road. Therefore taxiing this short distance would be the ideal option.
By air: traveling by air to Dickwella is the best way to witness the splendor of this small coastal village. These bird’s-eye views of this beach resort will leave you speechless. Since there are direct flights from Colombo to Dickwella it is not a hassle. Both Cinnamon Air and Sri Lankan Airlines provide domestic flight services along this route.
From Hambantota: the most scenic yet most costly mode of travel is flying. Those who wish to fly can board a flight to Dickwella at the Hambantota International Airport. When driving or taxiing the fastest route is via Colombo- Galle- Hambantota- Wellawaya highway (A2). The entire journey by road will take just 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you opt for a cheaper option, travelling by bus will be the ideal choice. With buses leaving the bus station at Hambantota every two hours, it is easy to catch a bus bound to Tangalle. Since Dickwella is nearly 16 kilometers away from Tangalle, you can taxi the rest of the way.
From Galle: the fastest route to take when traveling to Dickwella from Galle is via the Southern Expressway (E01), before proceeding on to the Colombo- Galle- Hambantota- Wellawaya highway (A2). In about an hour and 15 minutes you’d arrive at your target destination via this route. Those who prefer to travel by public transport can catch a bus bound to Matara. Travelling by bus is an easy option because buses leave the terminal hourly. From Matara one could taxi the short distance to Dickwella.
Vehicle or taxi arrangements and flight bookings can be made for you by our tour consultants at Epic Sri Lanka Holidays.
There is no need to fret over when to visit Dickwella, because Dickwella is an all-year round resort. The temperature here is not subject to great fluctuations. The temperature ranges in between 25 degree Celsius and 31 degree Celsius. Nonetheless, the best time to visit Dickwella is during the High season (from November to April).
Food and drink
There are many cafes and restaurants in Dickwella. The food here ranges from cheap eats to fine dining. Like all the other beach resorts, Dickwella too is known for its mouthwatering seafood. The ‘Blue Beach Paradise’, ‘Mahi Mahi Seafood Restaurant’, ‘Muthu Café’, ‘Coconut Palm Beach Seafood Restaurant’, ‘The Grove Lanka’, ‘Longbeach Restaurant’, ‘Salt House’, and ‘Dots Bay House’ are some restaurants with excellent reviews. Make sure to dine at these restaurants to enjoy some scrumptious meals.
Wevurukannala Viharaya: located in the town of Dickwella, this Viharaya is renowned for the largest seated statue of the Lord Buddha. This statue is 160 feet high and dates back to the rule of King Rajadhi. The temple is separated into three parts. The oldest of these three consists of a simple Buddha statue. The second part holds the monumental Buddha statue. The third part; also known as the Tunnel of Hell, shows in graphic detail, the end results and punishments faced when people give in to all the worldly temptations.
Hummanaya: a natural marvel formed by cliffs, where the high pressure, causes the water to spray through a blowhole up to 80 feet high or more, through a narrow crack. This blowhole is the only natural blowhole in the country and it also happens to be the 2nd tallest blowhole in the whole world.
Whale and Dolphin watching in Mirissa: Mirissa is undeniably the best place to watch whales and dolphins while in Sri Lanka because they flock together in this area (in order to breed in these warm waters). The whale watching season starts in November and continues till April; when the ocean is calmer. This is a must do and it will definitely leave you in awe and wonder.
Devinuwara: also known as Devinuwara or Devundara, this coastal town is located on the southernmost end of the country. In the ancient past, Devinuwara was an active seaport. A Buddhist temple, the Dondra Lighthouse and several ruins of Hindu shrines are found in the neighborhood. This place is called ‘City of God’ and the Dondra Temple is a temple devoted to the God Vishnu. The Dondra Lighthouse is the tallest lighthouse in the country and is also one of the tallest within the South East Asian region.
Dondra Lighthouse: this lighthouse located on the southernmost point of Sri Lanka (Dondra Head/ Devinuwara) happens to be the tallest lighthouse in Sri Lanka and one of the tallest lighthouses in South East Asia. The octagon shaped lighthouse is 49 meters in height and consists of seven flows and 196 steps to the top of the lighthouse.
Hiriketiya Beach: you’ll love everything about this beach from its horseshoe shape, palm trees, warm blue waters and perfect waves for surfing. It is one of the best and most beautiful beaches in the country and is less crowded. The moderate wave breaks in the middle of the bay are perfect for beginners and for more advanced surfers there are bigger wave breaks.
Dickwella Beach: this beach is protected by reefs and sand-bars and ergo it is one of the safest places to swim in, in Sri Lanka. However, since there aren’t any lifeguards around it is best to take necessary precautions. The months from October to April are best for snorkelers.
Diving, surfing and snorkeling: Dickwella boasts some great diving spots with PADI approved diving centers offering assistance and equipment along the shores. The beautiful coral reefs and the colorful coral fish make this snorkeling experience even more mesmerizing.
Surfing in Dickwella: It is also a great spot to surf in with the moderate wave breaks towards the center of the bay that are perfect for beginner surfers.
The Dickwella Beach swing: yet another astounding swing down the southern coast of Sri Lanka is found in Dickwella. This swing is located towards the very end of the beach, on a palm tree stretching out towards the vast ocean. Unlike the palm tree rope swing at Dalawella, there is an actual seat here, which makes it easy for anyone to try it out and take a swing on it.
Weherahena Temple: this temple is visited by many Buddhists from all over. It is a very tranquil and a perfect place for worship. This temple was first constructed as an underground temple and was kept hidden because the people at that time (the Buddhists) wanted to preserve this temple and avoid outside interference. There is a massive Buddha statue of 39 meters in height outside the temple, seated in a Samadhi position.