Renowned as a water sports hub for the masses the coastal holiday hub of Negombo is an avid diver’s dream come true. Teeming with a variety of marine species this popular seaside resort named after the lagoon of the same name is strategically located within easy access to some of Sri Lanka’s most accessible and engaging diving sites. Regardless of experience and expertise novices as well as seasoned divers will find plenty to write home about on a diving tour of Negombo.
One of the chief highlights for divers exploring Negombo’s intriguing azure oceans is of course Ula Gala also known as Barracuda Reef by tourists. With a depth that varies between 2-12m this interesting dive site located a mere 5km from the shore is perfect for novices and snorkelers as yellow jacks, massive groupers, travellys and Oriental Sweet Lips are frequently spotted here. A portion of an Asia carrier wreck which is what remains of the ship that went down in 1980 is also found at the sea floor of Ula Gala while another 60 year old shipwreck is also located nearby.
The 25m deep Derana Gala dive site is also perfect for viewing diverse marine life such as blue stripe snappers, lion fish, barracudas, honey comb morays, travellys and fussliers while schools of Goldline Spinetreks also inhabit this renowned dive site which is considered among the best diving venue in the island let alone Negombo. Beginners can try their luck at the open water Mutian Gala which is between 12-14m in depth. Containing two reefs the fish species frequently spotted here include cave dwelling marble rays, blue stripe snappers and lion fish. Those with a flair for exotic marine species however must venture down to Maha Gala which is one of the largest sites in all of Negombo while snorkelers can explore the Shark Pit also known as Mora Wala where blue corals and beds of colourful corals are omnipresent.
Uravi Gala is the place to witness hoards of groupers and rays while Pearl Reef (Mutu Paraya) boasts hundreds of varieties of fish species as well as Teddy Bear corals. Wreck fanatics on the other hand can explore the Air Craft Wreck which contains the ruins of two English twin engine air crafts which plummeted to the sea in 1945.
Other points of interest for divers touring Negombo include sites such as Diyamba Gala, Kammala coral reef, Diyamba Suda, the Hipolis Pits and Maha Kabaru Gala.Travellers on the lookout for Sri Lanka hotels in Negombo should look to Jetwing Beach for all their accommodation needs. Offering guests a scenic hideaway in one of the country’s best beach hubs it is little wonder this elegant rest is among the finest hotels in Sri Lanka in the island.