Negombo
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Our most recommended Negombo Boats & Yachts

From Negombo: Bentota Full-Day Tour

1. From Negombo: Bentota Full-Day Tour

Begin your day at 8:00 AM at Madu River in Balapitiya for a boat safari. For one-hour, journey through the primitive depths of the mangrove marshes. Traverse the dark and dangerous caverns, formed by the thick mangrove forests, interspersed with stretches of bright open water.  The next destination is the Kothduwa Temple. This Buddhist temple is located on the island and is known as the Kothduwa Raja Maha Viharaya. The island is within the Madu Ganga Estuary. Madu Ganga is an archipelago of fifteen different islands and a lagoon. It is believed that a Relic of Lord Buddha was once sheltered in the Kothduwa temple circa 340CE.  Enjoy lunch then visit the Lunuganga Garden. Geoffrey Bawa was one of Asia's finest architects. He passed away in 2003. Lunuganga was Bawa’s country home. It sits in an enchanting atmosphere with glorious views. It is now managed by the Lunuganga Trust. Admire the home’s features and blissfulness. It is now run as a country hotel and the proceeds go to Colombo.

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Lunuganga, Kosgoda and Balapitiya Day-Tour from Negombo

2. Lunuganga, Kosgoda and Balapitiya Day-Tour from Negombo

Start your day of adventure with a pickup bright and early at 7:00 AM when your chauffeur arrives to pick you up at your accommodation. After a scenic car ride (2.5-hours) you will reach the destination of Bentota. The first location you will visit whilst in Bentota is the Bawa estate in Lunuganga. While visiting the estate you will get to see the beautifully designed gardens that are now open to the public. Some of the buildings of the estate are also now a country house hotel. The tour of the estate takes 2-hours, during which, you will learn of the fascinating history behind this place.  Continue on your travels to Kosgoda for your visit to the Turtle Hatchery. Whilst here, you will get to spend 30 to 40-minutes learning about sea turtles and their conservation. One of people's favourite parts of the hatchery is the touch pools, deep tubs of seawater with baby sea turtles swimming in them. Visitors are allowed to pickup and handle them under supervision. There are also fully matured sea turtles of different kinds, receiving treatment for various ailments or wounds. Once you leave the Turtle Hatchery behind, you will venture to Balapitiva for your chance to go on a lovely Boat Safari in Madu River. Balapitiya is a little southern town lying in marshy wetlands. The area is a high bio-diversity zone that relies on the lagoon created by Madu River as it flows into the Indian Ocean. Your safari will take you on a ride down the river. You will get to see the dense mangrove forest that grows along the marshy banks of the river and the forms of wildlife that call the roots home. Your guide will also take you to some of the larger free standing islands on Madu River. On one such island you will find an old Buddhist monastery.  During the safari, you will also get to try a very popular attraction, the fish massage. This ‘massage parlor’ is a hut standing on stilts in the middle of the river. A netted-in area contains the ‘massage fish’. You will be sitting on the deck of the hut with your feet in the water, while the fish work their magic. After this relaxing boat tour, you will return to Negombo around 2:30 PM. You will arrive back at your hotel at 6:00 PM for an evening of rest and relaxation after a long day of adventure.

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From Colombo: Galle and Bentota Full-Day All-Inclusive Tour

3. From Colombo: Galle and Bentota Full-Day All-Inclusive Tour

You'll be picked up from your hotel in Negombo, Colombo, or Mount Lavinia at 7:30 AM to drive to Galle and visit the Dutch fort. The fort is a historical, archaeological, and architectural heritage monument. Even after more than 400 years, it remains intact and well maintained thanks to the extensive reconstruction work done by Sri Lanka's archaeological department. Next, you'll visit Ambalangoda, known for its exquisite collection of native masks. Many generations of artisans have carved these beautiful artifacts. Afterwards, drive on to Balaptiva for lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch, you'll take a boat trip on the Madu Ganga River. Discover the unspoiled beauty of the Madu Ganga estuary, a wetland ecosystem that opens to the Indian Ocean. Finally, you'll visit a turtle hatchery in Kosgoda before heading back to your hotel. Visitors can see the newborn turtles and even be a part of the process of releasing them into the sea!  

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Galle Fort and Fish Massage from Negombo

4. Galle Fort and Fish Massage from Negombo

Begin your day at 8:00 AM at Madu River in Balapitiya for a boat safari. For one-hour, journey through the primitive depths of the mangrove marshes. Traverse the dark and dangerous caverns, formed by the thick mangrove forests, interspersed with stretches of bright open water.  The next destination is an outdoor fish massage parlor. Dangle your feet into a fenced section of the river to get treated to a massage by the fish. After, visit Galle Fort in Sri Lanka, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Galle Fort, or Dutch Fort as it is also known, is a fortification built by the Portuguese on the Southwestern coast of Sri Lanka. The final destination is the Ahangama fishing village for a stilt fishing photo shoot. 

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Negombo: Dutch Canal, Negombo Lagoon, Muthrajawela Boat Tour

5. Negombo: Dutch Canal, Negombo Lagoon, Muthrajawela Boat Tour

Start your memorable boat ride through the Dutch canal. This was at one time an important link in the transportation route which supplied the Dutch colonial administration. You will continue your ride through the Canal to the lagoon which is fed by a number of small rivers and a canal. It is linked to the sea by a narrow channel to the north, near Negombo city. It is surrounded by a densely populated region containing rice paddies, coconut plantations and grassland. The land is used for fishing and agriculture. The lagoon has extensive mangrove swamps and attracts a wide variety of water birds including cormorants, herons, egrets, gulls, terns and other shorebirds.  Finally, you will reach Muthurajawela Wetland that provides a home for a diverse range of flora and fauna, some of which are endemic and threatened. It is also an important area for migratory birds, making it a primary recreational and educational destination in Negombo. 

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Colombo/Negombo: Galle, Bentota, and Hikkaduwa Day Trip

6. Colombo/Negombo: Galle, Bentota, and Hikkaduwa Day Trip

Your tour begins as you are picked up from your Colombo hotel to be transferred to Bentota. Once there you will enjoy some water sports, before taking a river safari down the beautiful Madu River. This river is a wetland estuary spreading over 900 hectares of which 770 hectares are covered with water and inhabited with 64 islands. This boat ride is a wonderful way to take a closer look at this complex wetland ecosystem, which is a UNESCO-listed site. The area is also protected by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands as one of the last wetlands in Sri Lanka to contain a pristine mangrove forest. Once having explored the wetlands, you will transfer to Kosgoda to visit a turtle hatchery where you will see various breeds of sea turtles. Lunch at a recommended restaurant will follow before you transfer to Meetiyagoda, where you will visit the Moonstone Mine and workshop. Following the mine, you'll head to Hikkaduwa Beach to visit the Galle Dutch fort, which was first built in 1588 by the Portuguese. It was later extensively fortified by the Dutch during the 17th century, and in the modern age has become UNESCO-listed. At the conclusion of your cultural experience, you will transfer back to Colombo.

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From Bentota: Balapitiya, Handunugoda and Galle Guided Tour

7. From Bentota: Balapitiya, Handunugoda and Galle Guided Tour

Start your sightseeing adventure with a convenient pickup from your hotel and head to your first stop for the day, Balapitiya. Enjoy a boat safari down the beautiful Madu River. Take a closer look at this wetland estuary and explore its lush mangrove forests, gliding under the canopy of the forest tunnels. Take in the unique biodiversity of this region, keeping an eye out for the crocodiles and water monitors that inhabit these waters. Stop at one of the many islands to witness the locals harvest cinnamon and end your boat safari with a visit to the fish spa. Your tropical tour continues after a short break for lunch. Head to Handunugoda to visit the local tea estate. Discover the tea that this plantation is famous for, Virgin White Tea, and learn how this luxury product is made on a tour of the plantation. Next, head to Ahangama for a truly unique photo opportunity. Watch as local fishermen demonstrate on-water stilt fishing, one of Sri Lanka's most interesting traditional fishing methods. Speak to one of the local fishermen and learn how they do it. The final stop on your Sri Lankan sightseeing tour is the old colonial city of Galle. Explore the Galle Fort, one of the best-preserved fortifications in Asia. Visit the Maritime Museum, the Galle National Museum, and the local lighthouse. Stroll down cobblestone streets as you learn the history of this port city, including the periods of Portuguese and Dutch rule.

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From Colombo: Muthurajawela Sanctuary Bird Watching Tour

8. From Colombo: Muthurajawela Sanctuary Bird Watching Tour

Head to the Muthurajawela Marsh in Negombo to experience the vibrant birdlife at the bird sanctuary. Enjoy a day away from the hustle and bustle of the city and immerse yourself in Muthuajawela’s lush greenery and wildlife. Ride a boat across the lagoon.  From pickup in Colombo, it takes approximately an hour to get to Muthurajawela. En route, enjoy your included packed breakfast. Upon arrival, start your hike through the wilderness. A professional bird guide will help to identify birds you see along the way. Get a chance to see little green herons, black-crowned night herons, Indian cormorants, Eurasian curlew, shikras, white-bellied sea eagles, and many others. Later, complete your experience with a 2-hour boat ride on the lagoon and get a chance to see more birds such as waders or water birds. After, get dropped back off at your accommodation in Colombo. Muthurajawela, one of the 12 high-priority wetlands in Sri Lanka, has nearly 200 species of flora, 102 species of birds, 40 species of fish, 14 species of reptiles, over 20 species of mammals, and almost 50 species of butterflies in the sanctuary. The wetlands of the Muthurajawela Bird Sanctuary sprawls over 6230 hectares on the western coastline of Sri Lanka. Over 200 years ago, the area was prime agricultural land, which produced the beautiful pearl-like rice that was served to the kings of the Kotte Kingdom. Once the fields were abandoned due to saltwater seepage from the Dutch Canals, nature took over, and with time it became populated with the highly biodiverse ecology of the coastal wetlands that it is now.

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From Colombo: Negombo Lagoon Boat Excursion with Lunch

9. From Colombo: Negombo Lagoon Boat Excursion with Lunch

Escape the hustle and bustle of Colombo with a private boat excursion through the Negombo Lagoon. Feel relaxed on calm waters and idyllic scenes of local life and nature. Your driver will pick you up in Colombo and take you on an approximately 2-hour drive to Negombo. Board your boat and push out into the lagoon and through the mangroves. Enjoy the breeze and bright sunshine of the late morning. As you cruise along the water, watch as fishermen cast their nets and float beside sailing boats as they make their way out to the sea. See a wide range of water birds and waders. Depending on the tide and season, have the chance to see the gull colony on the sand flats. During your boat excursion, refreshments will be provided. Also delight in a Sri Lankan seafood lunch. At the conclusion of your boat excursion, safely return back to Colombo.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Negombo

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What people are saying about Negombo

AMAZING! We couldnt have asked for more in a day. Our first spot was Bentota beach for some adventure sports. We were so lucky to spot a crocodile resting on the shores of the river while we went speed boating. Next we stopped at the turtle conservation centre and learned about turtles and were lucky enough to meet some newly born turtles. From there we headed for the Madu river boat ride. The river safari was adventurous and lots of fun. Next and the last stop was Galle Fort. Loved every second spent in this beautiful UNESCO heritage site. Overall super satisfying experience. Loved each bit of it. Aarun was the best guide we could have asked for. 5 stars for the whole tour.

Nice morning sailing

Very enthusiastic and knowledgeable boat driver / guide. Lovely trip to lagoon. The Dutch Channel was contaminated by waste to great frustration for our guide who also told of a government turning a blind eye to the massive pollution and poverty that is. If you want to experience the contrast in Sri Lanka, then book a trip.

Great experience!

Was a pleasant trip to Galle, thanks to our driver Aaron! And thanks for the new experience having a fish massage, safari river and for the natural cinnamon tea which seems to be the best medicine!! Highly recommended!!

Very knowledgable and caring guide. You get a good understanding of the native life around the islands and mangroves of the lagoon plus a great description and presentation of local life and fishing.

Great tour of the wetlands and canals

What a lovely person. Very knowledgable about the wildlife and local history and geography. Plenty to see. Well worth the money