20.09.2013 - 23.09.2013 34 °C
After our amazing late night watching turtles we decided to move on. We never normally spend just one night in a place but we were just to eager too see more of Sri Lanka. We checked out and sat in one of the sleepy cafes watching the sea to have breakfast. We ordered Sri Lankan omelette and they were fiery with fresh green chilies and full of herbs, tomatoes and onions. It was delicious and we washed it down with a gallon of tea. With full bellies we then made our way to the bus station, bought some coconut biscuits and water for the journey and set off on the bus to Matara. We had to change here and get another bus to Mirissa. We are now working our way back along the south coast towards Colombo on the west.
It took a while but the busses were not very busy compared to normal and we enjoyed our biscuits and the views of the coast.
Once in Mirissa we pulled up at the bus stop outside a guest house and were offered a room for 1500Rs. We are staying at Ayodhya and it is cheap and comfortable. We are the only guests and the family who owns it are very friendly and helpful.
We were not really sure what to expect from Mirissa as it just looks like a collection of guesthouses and a few shops on a road but we went to explore the beach.
The beach is a tropical paradise, a thin strip of golden sand, palm trees and waves. It is gorgeous and we wandered down the beach watching people play in the waves. There are lots of beach shacks to eat and drink at and many have tables on the sand. The sea comes right up to the shacks, wetting your feet with the warm ocean while you are sat. It is lovely. It's small and ramshackled but very beautiful and laid back. We sat at one of the shacks and shared a beer, admiring the view and talking in the sea breeze.
We spent all afternoon walking in the sea and drinking at a few different shacks and came back to watch the sunset and have some fish for dinner. It is stunning and very romantic, with candles and tables for two. We went back early ready for an early start the next morning.
Our first full day in Mirissa we decided to book onto a whale watching tour. Mirissa is one of the best places in the world to see blue whales in the wild. We are too early for the watching season but it is still a good place to see whales all year round so we thought we would give it a try while we were here even though the chances are slimmer. We booked with Raja and the Whales as they have tons of amazing reviews and provide ethical and wildlife friendly tours for 6000Rs each. A lot of smaller companies get too close, disrupting the whales which may lead to them changing their migration patterns.
We were picked up from our guest house at 6.50am and taken to the harbour.
The boat was nice and the crew were lovely. They brought around ginger biscuits and tea and we set off. They handed out sea sickness pills to anyone who requested and Chelsea had one as last time the sea was rough in the dive boat she wasn't well.
The sea was really rough and the small boat rocked from side to side and periodically slammed into the waves. Chelsea immediately felt sick and laid down. After some time Liam was sick. It takes an hour to reach the right depth that the whales swim at and then they search around for the whales. There was none in sight but we kept searching. We had a plate of fresh fruit each and some eggs and bread and the crew give out water. It's an excellent service and the young men manning the boat can't do enough for you.
We were out on the sea for around five hours and unfortunately we didn't see any whales. The crew think they were just too far out today. Nevertheless it was a good experience and we got a full refund as we didn't see any whales.
We would fully recommend Raj and the Whale for anyone wanting to go whale watching. They are professional and polite and they care a lot about the environment and the whales. They put the whales first and the customers second as to not disturb them which we like.
The rest of our time in Mirissa has been spent on the beautiful beach. All the beach bars have free sunbeds and we have enjoyed laying in the sunshine and playing in the huge waves. The beach is not very busy and it is really relaxing. In the day we have spent all day on the sand drinking cold drinks and reading and at night we have returned to the beach to watch the sunset and have dinner.
Each place has small tables and candles and the fresh seafood of the day laid out for you to pick. We have had some amazing meals, grilled fish and jumbo prawns at one of the shacks further down the beach which has become our favourite.
It is really romantic and the small cove is lit up with candles and you can sit right at the water enjoying the sound of the waves. Mirissa is not what we expected but has the balance just right for us. There is a lot of choice of bars and restaurants, all which offer the same meals but which have lovely atmospheres yet it is not built up or crowded. It's a little slice of tropical paradise which we will be sad to leave.