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Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south westSurf Shop
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
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Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
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Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
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Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south westBrighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south westMessage Board
 
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west
Brighton Surf report for the South Coast with long distance surfing forecasts for Devon and Cornwall and the south west



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Sri Lanka

Since the end of the civil war in 2002, Sri Lanka has seen tourism begin to pick up - although surfers had been braving the gun-toting (easy) Tigers, landmined roads etc. all through the conflict. However, SL has been a big surf destination since at least the early 70s - even Vince went there when he was a hippy!

The main surf Mecca is Hikkaduwa - about 2.5 hours south of Colombo. Its got about 4 breaks, ranging from well overhead top to bottom A frame peaks over coral reefs to a gentle beachbreak. It's also the most crowded spot, with up to 40 surfers on one break in the morning rush-hour. However, with one exception, when some locals beat a visiting surfer over the head with:
a) a lump of wood, then
b) the hapless gringo's board,
I never saw any vexation or heavy dread. This may be because the majority of the surfers there are extremely polite Japanese who, while taking off 5 at a time, always pull out to let s/he with priority. There are plenty of boards to rent (£1/hour) including longboards, minimals and shortboards. And boogieboards for the kids.

Although there are plenty pukka spots further south and north of Hikkaduwa (see Stormrider Guide for details) I couldn't be arsed to go to them. After all, the waves were about a minute from the hotel, food and drink was unbelievably cheap (£10/day tops) and the place was horizontally laid-back. Even better, there was plenty evidence of a Brighton influence with Small Planet and Filf stickers adorning the place and even a couple of Filf boards in the line up. Home Sweet Home.

Travel info: Flights from about £500 in high (dry) season (Oct-May). Sri Lankan Airlines fly via Maldives (which are stupidly expensive for a surf trip). Cheaper flights are available in the rainy season when the mysto big wave spot on the east coast starts working. Expect to share the plane with serried ranks of beige, elasticated-waisted leisurewear-clad pensioners on Kuoni package trips. Take ear plugs to mask the snoring. Surfboards go free on SLA - one of the few airlines in the world to adopt this surfer friendly approach.

Take a van (10 seater taxi) to Hikkaduwa - should cost about £20 but a lot quicker and comfortable than ordinary buses. Try to get one with a/c.

While the wave and beach pictures make it look like an unspoilt wave Mecca, just behind the beach is one of the busiest roads in the country (and the drivers are maniacs) so take ear plugs and your wits when dicing in the traffic. And its a great place to get boardshorts tailor made to fit your lithe or otherwise torso - for about £5. The place most surfers go to is Dunstan's.


Andrew Coleman



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