Nilaveli is a coastal resort town and suburb of the Trincomalee District. It is located 16 km northwest of the city of Trincomalee. A historically popular Tamil village and tourist destination of the district alongside the nearby Uppuveli, the numbers of visitors declined following the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and Sri Lankan Civil War, but have risen again since 2010. So let’s see now the best things to do in Nilaveli in 2022!
What to do in Nilaveli
Enjoy the calm sandy beaches
It’s hard to find calm beaches in Sri Lanka. The currents all around the island are constantly causing big waves, making Sri Lanka the perfect spot for surf lovers. But if you prefer calmer beaches, where you can just swim, snorkel, and relax in the warm water, this is your coastline. Starting from Mullaitivu, via Kuchchaveli till Nilaveli and Uppuveli. We could spend hours in the water just enjoying the perfect temperature of the ocean and meanwhile admiring all the palm trees and the sandy coastline.
Visit Pigeon Island
Pigeon Island National Park is one of the two marine national parks of the region. It is situated 1 km off the coast of Nilaveli. It has many species of vegetation, coral and reef fish. All are contributing to Nilaveli’s rich biodiversity. They are organising daily trips from Nilaveli, you can get there by a motorboat. Often they approach the guests of the hotels directly on the beach offering their daily snorkel or complete national park tours. You can also swim with turtles and sharks on Pigeon Island!
Go for Whale Watching
Sri Lanka is one of the best places in the world to go whale watching. You can almost find whales every month of the year. On the east coast, the season runs from May to August with the best times to see them in June and July. The tours leave from Nilaveli but as well as from the neighbouring Trincomalee too. There are three different types of whales you can spot. The Sperm whale, Bryde’s whale, and the Blue whale.
How to get to Nilaveli
Nilaveli is very well-connected with the neighbouring towns. From Elephant Pass the best is to take the amazingly beautiful coastal road to get to Nilaveli, you won’t regret it. And it’s easy to reach from Anuradhapura (A-12) and Dambulla (A-6) as well.
Where to stay in Nilaveli
We would highly recommend Cardamon Hotel in Nilaveli. We spent there two unforgettable nights, even though originally we planned to stay 1 night only. But we felt so great there, that we decided to extend our stay. How great we did, as it turned out that many roads were blocked on that day so we couldn’t even move around. The owners helped us with route planning, to avoid the road blocks and during the blackouts as well they were able to provide a nice atmosphere. The place offers breakfast, dinner and cold beers too. They have a big pool and amazing sandy beach area. Not to mention that they organised last minute laundry service for us too. If you check, you might find many hotels around Nilaveli, but if you want to stay in a clean & spacious room, with all services that you might need for a very reasonable price, go to Cardamon Hotel!
Things to do around Nilaveli
Kuchchaveli is a tiny village with an amazing coastline. The sandy beaches are nicely cleaned and all around the hotels it’s marked when it’s safe to enter the water. They always worn you about the currents as well.
If you hadn’t had enough from sandy beaches, you can also visit the neighbouring Uppuveli. Some of the locals prefer even more Uppuveli’s beach vs Nilaveli. It’s up to preferences, but it’s definitely worth the visit, if you want to enjoy a complete beach day. Not to miss the famous Fernando’s Bar, where you can get fresh cocktails and sun-beds to enjoy your day to the fullest. Be prepared to meet other tourists as well, as it’s a famous chill-out at meeting point for any kind of travellers.
Trincomalee, is sacred to Sri Lankan Tamils and Hindus around the world. The city has many Hindu sites of historical importance. These sites are sacred to the Hindus and some Buddhists also worship at these Hindu sites. Also, it’s a good place to spot blue whales!
Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya & Dambulla
Nilaveli, besides being located on the amazing sandy coast, has a relative close location to some of the most interesting archeological and sacred places all around Sri Lanka. Such as Polonnaruwa, Sigiriya & Dambulla. Make sure to combine your route with one of the below visits!
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