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Five Motorbike Trips to Enjoy Sri Lanka

Five Motorbike Trips to Enjoy Sri Lanka
  1. Colombo to Kitulgala: 95 Kilometers

  2. Colombo to Panadura Beach: 40 kilometres

  3. Colombo to Negombo beach: 35 Kilometers

  4. Colombo to Ingiriya: 56 Kilometers

  5. Colombo to Awissawella wet zone botanical garden: 46 Kilometers

Undertaking a motorbike tour is one of the best ways to discover Sri Lanka’s beautiful nature, quaint villages and cultured cities.

The island of Sri Lanka is experiencing motorbiking revolution. The number of people who have taken to two wheels has increased at least by 100% during the last several years. Most roads that are planned in the modern time are very spacious and provide a smooth surface to have a comfortable and safe ride; the popularity of motorbikes increasing rapidly among the young generation of the island.

It has also gone a long way and become a very popular household transport option with the availability of lightweight scooter type of motorbikes, which are very suitable for females. Sri Lanka was not a country like Thailand where females hit the road with motorbikes, but this trend is making gradual twist for the last few years in Sri Lanka and females are also starting to get familiar with motorbikes. The demand for scooters has gone up compared to other types of motorbikes due to the increasing demand especially from the female.

Large numbers of people jump on to the wheels to have a leisurely ride while some others using it to fulfilling their transport requirement. The numbers of foreign tourists, who take the motorbike tours in Sri Lanka also, have been increased because taking a motorbike tour is an ideal way to explore the natural beauty, quaint villages and cultured cities without burning your hard earned money.

Starts from Colombo, these 5 motorbike routes – ranging 50 to 100 km each way (and always with the availability of other transportation options such as buses and taxi) – is the best introduction to the different sides of the western province of Sri Lanka.

jungle trek kitulgala

Colombo to Kitulgala: 95 Kilometers

On the hunt for the natural beauty of Sri Lanka with a twist of a bit of adventure, Kitulgala, located in the outskirts of Rathnapura, just 95 kilometres eastward from Colombo, is the place to go. Adventure playground of Sri Lanka or better known as “Kitulgala” is just a 2 hours drive from Colombo and has a totally different setting than Colombo. Laidback small city has an overwhelming green treasure with rivers, lakes, waterfalls, mountains.

Kitulgala has become the most popular adventure holiday destination on the island and attracts a large number of local as well as foreign adventure enthusiasts. Kitulgala is not only suitable for adrenaline pumping activities but also for exploration of rich bio-diversity of Sri Lanka. The extensive rocky outcrop with rain forest cover offers a valuable opportunity for nature lovers to explore Sri Lankan plant life, avian fauna species, waterfalls, mountains, caves and remote villages.

The journey starts in Colombo’s busy Galle face neighbourhood on the Galle road, but the scenery starts to transform into a beautiful picture few minutes after starting the tour as you pass the quiet Sitawaka Kingdom passing through laid-back small cities, the farming community of Puwakpitiya and Awissawella.  With quite empty roads all the way except in the cities, this two hours motorbike trip is a fantastic introduction to long-distance motorbiking for novices or families with kids.

When you arrive at Kitulagala you are in for a workout. It offers many Zig Zag routes, few winding climbs that average about 10% gradient over 2 kilometres trek, is the easiest and fastest way to reach the rainforest. From the main road of Kitulgala, local village guides organize short nature walks into the rainforest providing an up-close introduction to the indigenous plants, trees, birds and few other animal species residing in the jungle.

panadura beach

Colombo to Panadura Beach: 40 kilometres

A mere 20 km south of Colombo, the beach park of Panadura is perfect for a family outing, with wide sandy beaches, open spaces, kids play area and sheltered woods for children to play and explore.

The coastal city of Panadura is one of the closest seaside resorts of Colombo, with the colourful and vibrant city, sandy, palm-fringed beaches and fairyland for sun basking enthusiasts.  Just 20 km south of Colombo – and doable in just 2 hours on a motorbike – the beaches of Panadura has become one of the favourite weekends escapes on the western province.

The tour from Colombo leads south-ward on Galle-Colombo main road along the coastal belt of Western province, and the journey is quite easy and comfortable due to the well-maintained roads and it is mainly a flat road.

Stop for refreshment in a charming city like Moratuwa 10 km from Colombo, with the daily market selling Fruit and vegetable. Here you can buy perfect picnic treats such as bread, pastries, salad, juices, warm soup.

If you have a religious or cultural buff, the nearby Buddhist temple is a bonus for your hard earned trip. Gangatilaka vihara is one of the oldest Buddhist temples on the island and one of the most beautiful temples located on the banks of Kaluganaga.  

beach hopping bentota

Colombo to Negombo: 35 Kilometers

The fishing village of Negombo is the centre of Sri Lanka’s Christian community, is an easy-to-tackle motorbike trip from Colombo. The three hours trip starts at Pettah railway station and heads north along Negombo-Colombo main road, passing Peliyagoda, Victoria Bridge, the Colombo international airport and into the beautiful beach resort of Negombo. With not much twists and turns and even some empty roads, the trip is very enjoyable, passing through small Christian towns.

Taking the less crowded road along the Dutch canal makes the trip even more enjoyable, especially if you are a type of person who loves nature. This road turns to be very verdant and passing through the small fishing villages of Wattala and Pamunugama.

Negombo is a fishing locality, therefore the Negombo fish market is a hot topic here, and the fishing market is very busy on all 7 days of the week at early hours. Negombo beach, where tons of fresh fish are dried under the scorching heat is also the main draw here. Take a ride along the Lewis lane, which is the tourist hangout in Negombo and place to encounter hotels, guest houses, eateries, pubs, beach Restaurants and a large number of medieval churches.

Negombo boasted to have one of the oldest forts built by Dutch on the island, the fort is to be found near the Fishmarket, and however, the fort is in very dilapidated condition due to the lack of maintenance.

Colombo to Ingiriya: 56 Kilometers

Bodhinagala is in one of the most beautiful located 56 km away from the capital of Sri Lanka.  Laid-back, wide rocky outcrop and a popular Buddhist hermitage in the west coast of the island – and doable in a 2 hours ride – It is one of the favourites for meditation, as well as for leisurely stroll and is a favourite weekend escape.

Start the journey at the Fort railway station and head east down Awissawella road. The mostly flat road skirts the popular towns like Battaramulla, Padukka, Horana, but mostly the road round through the picturesque countryside.  The beautiful scenery as you pass Padukka is a highlight of the day, a typical rural setting with paddy fields,  remote villages, patches of forests and sparkling streams.

seethawaka wetzone botanical garden

Colombo to Seethawaka wet zone botanical garden: 46 Kilometers

To explore the beautiful landscapes east of the capital, head to the route that leads to the interior of the country from the beach. Starting at the centre of Colombo, the road makes its way between busy towns such as Wellampitiya, Angoda, Kaduwela towards the hilly outcrop of Sitawaka Kingdom. The beginning of the journey meander through flat roads while towards the end of the journey is somewhat hilly.

Sitawaka is best known as the capital of Sri Lanka during the medieval period.  This south-central Sri Lankan kingdom had been the ruling capital of the island for 70 years established in 1521 AD. The best way to see and learn about the history of Sitawaka is to opt for short trips to historical places in the area.

Our destination, wet zone botanical garden is just 10km away from the Awissawella town, is a popular weekend anchoring spot for most families in busy towns on the western province. Being an attraction very close to Colombo it has become a popular as family pick garden. The park offers a large extent of flat grasslands wide range flowering plants as well as many other economically important flora species.

An excellent way to enjoy your trip is to take a duck boat tour in the shallow lake. These duck boats are driven by paddling and 2 persons can comfortably sit in the boat.

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Sanjeewa Padmal (Seerendipity tours)

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