Adrenaline Rush!

Sri Lanka is known for its stunning vistas and cosmopolitan commercial capital – Colombo. Ranked by Lonely Planet as one of the best countries to visit in 2019, this tropical island paradise once known as Serendib is slowly but surely expanding its repertoire to reach out to travellers who are health conscious and thrive on exhilaration.

Since the pandemic continues to restrict travel around the world to varying degrees, group activities have to be handled with due care and cautious optimism – yes, even in a ‘paradise isle’ such as Sri Lanka!

Yet, there are plenty of adrenaline fuelled activities for the more adventurous visitors to the island. A number of such activities take place down south and in the central highlands – enter diving and rock climbing!


Sri Lanka was a popular stopover on the ancient Silk Road with a longstanding maritime and trading history. Visitors to the island still find themselves immersed in a rich blend of cultures and heritage; and it’s no less diverse deep in the ocean, thanks to a variety of marine habitats ranging from shipwrecks and thriving reef systems, to submerged ruins, caves and dramatic offshore sites.

Marine creatures great and small can be seen when diving in Sri Lankan waters – and there are seasonal sightings of blue and sperm whales to be enjoyed, as well as a plethora of pelagic hunters and a range of Indian Ocean reef fish.

Where you dive will depend on the seasonal monsoons and whether the island’s diving sites are open… either on the east coast from May to September or off its western shores between October and April.

Most of the sites are found along the southwest coastline and off Colombo’s shoreline. However, the wreck of the famous WWII aircraft carrier HMS Hermes is located in the east of the island and it should make your list of dives to do!


The craggy rocks and towering mountains of Taprobane, which have stood tall through time (they’ve only changed a little with the weather over the ages), represent a challenge for explorers. Scaling their heights is simply thrilling for hikers and climbers alike.

Rock climbing is an extreme sport that involves scaling upwards, downwards and across natural rock formations or artificial walls.

Sri Lanka’s impressive mountain ranges, amazing rocky outcrops and stunning views represent an attractive challenge for climbers.There are many natural rock formations so it doesn’t matter if you are a beginner, an experienced professional climber or a mix of the two – there’s a challenge for everyone!

If you’re trying out rock climbing for the first time, Sri Lanka is the ideal place to start as there are established sites for this activity around the country. This small island has many simple and safe climbing routes with guides who are ready to help you on your first ascent.

Rock climbing can also be a part of adven ture holiday packages where nature trails or hiking are included. So ask your hotel or travel agent to recommend packages that match your skills.

Most climbing locations are in the Knuckles Mountain Range; but Sri Lanka does have many rock formations around its central massif and adjacent hinterland in places such as Sigiriya, Dambulla, Adam’s Peak, Nuwara Eliya and around Bambarakanda Falls.

Compiled by Ashwini Vethakan

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