Okay I didn’t do the majority of what the title of post says but that’s what Hikkaduwa is all about! I left Unawatuna early and made my way to Hikkaduwa, just 45 mins away, in the hope of finding a hostel at a good price – Again winging it. I’ve had an alright experience winging it with accommodation but it can get annoying when it’s starting to feel like I’m wasting time looking for accommodation when I should be exploring. Anyway I finally settled with ‘Kind and Love Hostel’. I negotiated their set price of 1000 rupees, to 900 which includes breakfast. It was also heaps more spacey and clean than the other two I checked out on the same road (Traveller’s hostel and Beach Monkey Hikkaduwa). So anyway, it was just after 9am so I needed to find breakfast pronto!
The hostel is located close to the bus station and about a 10-15min walk from the main tourist strip, but I preferred this because it meant I was closer to the ‘local’ food places and people. I quickly found papaya, guava, and banana from a fruit vendor, and hopped over 50m to a local restaurant that was making fresh roti – yes! I ordered the hottest egg roti and headed behind the building to the beach. It was a short walk to the palm trees and where a lot of locals and tourists were snorkelling and boats were anchored for diving. This looked much more like my scene than Unawatuna. I found a shady spot to watch the surfers and snorkellers, and ripped into breakfast – all for 150 rupees, the sea salt breeze and morning sun, I was having a grand start to the day.
I walked along the beach and enquired with a few dive centres about pricing. I was tempted to go snorkelling or swimming but I also felt a little demotivated to do anything adventurous today. One diving place offered a refresher dive + a normal dive for $40USD and I considered it since I’d be doing some diving with the sis in Bali and it’d be good to get the refresher out of the way. I ended up scrapping the idea and headed back to the hostel to do a big session of laundry. I hadn’t properly washed all my clothes for the past two weeks (yeah, I was filthy), so I pretty much washed half of what was in my backpack. The sun was out and I was certain everything would dry by tomorrow. At which point I met Jaanock from Finland!
Jaanock was visiting the hostel owners as he stayed here a few weeks back. He seemed to have a good relationship with them and was known around the neighbourhood. He’s the first Finnish person I met, though he sounds a little Irish, and now that I think about it, looks a little like a lumberjack with his short beard and unruly orange/brown hair haha. We went for a walk around the villages then headed into town for lunch. I had my first ‘western’/’tourist’ food – a Chicken burger with french fries. Unfortunately I didn’t take a photo but after eating it I realised it was just as expensive as Maccas :O. I got given like 15 french fries haha, not the chunky fries that were advertised on the menu :P. Anyhow I just loved how the restaurant was under a beach hut roof. The ground was all sand too so my feet felt nice 🙂
Jaanock was cool to talk to. He’s a 32 year old architecht and he was staying in Sri Lanka for another two months, maybe doing a building project if it eventuates. I guess I could somewhat understand the appeal of Sri Lanka if you live that far away in nordic Europe but it just ain’t my cup of sunshine.
I took the rest of the afternoon pretty chill. Showering three times to get the dust and dry sticky-skin sunscreen feeling off me, and just chatting with some people in and out of the hostel – a dude from Iran, Dave from California, a girl from Australia, another from Manchester, and the first other Sydney-sider, Aleck! I got the impression that Russians owned the tourist population of south Sri Lanka, though I’ve just been meeting a lot of Germans.
Oh, this night was also my Indian Visa conundrum. I was too late to apply for the ‘visa on arrival’ and ended up paying almost three times the normal cost to have it processed within 24 hours. There’s so many sites offering the express service and you just don’t know which ones are legit. I tried swapping to my international sim to try and give the consulate a call but that didn’t work, so I tried emailing and chat services… Ugh the worry!
I ended up just going with a site called iVisa, something I found through a well-known blogger’s page, and it’s worked out well. Fingers crossed everything goes smooth at the airport!!
I have to also mention the hoppers I had for dinner! I thought I didn’t like them after trying them for the first time in Sigiriya, but apparently I just didn’t have a good one. So when I found a local place that was making hoppers, I ordered just one to see how it tasted. Now THIS one I could smell the coconut scent – it was soft like a coconut rice cake in the middle, and it had the thin and crispy shell on the outer bowl-shaped edge. YUM!! 3 more to go please 🙂 🙂