Now that we have the motorbike we decided to go and check out some of the surrounding areas near Hikkaduwa. A “highway” runs straight down the coast, passing through all the small coastal towns and villages so it seemed like the best place to start. When I say highway I mean a 2 lane road that is flanked on all sides by buildings in the towns and beach and houses in between. The traffic is chaos (more on that in the next blog) and to call it a highway is a generous statement however it was a lovely drive all the same.
We went to the town most acclaimed as being the best beach town in the region, Mirissa, and while it was a lovely spot we both felt that it was a little overdeveloped compared to our little Hikkaduwa and the beaches weren’t as nice. I swear the Indian Ocean produces some of the best beaches to be had. The water is so clean and clear and most importantly for me it is warm! Hikkaduwa also has the advantage of 2 different bays (similar to the shots of Mirissa) where one is calm due to the protection of an offshore reef while the second bay is more rolling waves and surf. A little bit of something for everyone.
Having lunched at Mirissa we decided to take the inland route home. Many of you may not know, but Dave has a passion for exploration and even at home, if we drive down one route to get somewhere, it is impossible to take that same road home if there is an alternative. Exploration is key to all journeys. So armed with a tourist map and the trusty map on the phone we headed inland. Somehow in the myriad of small villages we got turned around a bit and became a little lost 😉
I think the penny dropped when we stopped at a roadside stall to buy a coconut and the lady in very broken English asked us where we were going. Dave pointed down the road and told her Galle. She shook her head and in rapid fire Sinhalese told us something. Of course not speaking Sinhalese we didn’t know what that something was so we just smiled the tourist “I don’t understand” smile and carried on our way.
It did get Dave wondering though so we stopped at the next named town and checked our map again. Ooooops! We had taken a bit of a detour well north of where we though we were and unfortunately there were no direct routes to get us back to the coast. So …. about 4 hours riding, lots of “excuse me, Hikkaduwa this way?” with much pointing, and one very sore backside later we found our way back to the coast.
My only response to the unexpected journey was that the next day was not going to be spent on the bike. My poor old backside was definitely not meant to sit on that scooter for 8 hours 🙂 Other than that it was a joyous day of scenery and true exploration, the end of which deserved a few quiet beverages on the beach 😉
On a side note – I still haven’t quite got a handle on asking Dave to stop the bike so that I can take some photos so I am sorry but the selection is a little sparse. I promise to do better 😉