By Jenna Jolie
Have you ever traveled to a new destination and had to say "wow" to the serene vibe that it brings to you? For many travelers, this sensation unfolds in the heart of Katunayake. While Katunayake might be less known than some of Sri Lanka's more prominent cities, its unique beauty will draw the attention of every traveler. If you're contemplating visiting Sri Lanka and are uncertain whether to include Katunayake in your travel itinerary, let us provide some insights.
In the article below, Sri Lanka Immigration Services will list the top-rated attractions within Katunayake and must-do activities there. We hold a strong belief that by incorporating this city into your travel plans, you'll ultimately be delighted that you did.
What state is Katunayake in?
Katunayake is a suburb of Negombo City located in the Western Province of Sri Lanka. This attraction holds a pivotal position as the home of Bandaranaike International Airport (Colombo Airport).
Katunayake witnessed a significant transformation in 1977 with a change in government and the advent of an open economy policy. This pivotal shift led to the allocation of a substantial area to establish what is now known as the Export Promotion Zone, a bustling hub of trade and commerce, further enhancing Katunayake's significance in the region.
Katunayake is a suburb of Negombo City in the western province of Sri Lanka
Getting to Katunayake
Getting to Katunayake from major cities in Sri Lanka is relatively easy, thanks to the country's well-connected transportation network. If Katunayake is your next destination, here are three common ways to reach it:
Colombo to Katunayake: Katunayake is just a short 30-minute drive from Colombo, the capital city of Sri Lanka. You can easily hire a taxi or use ride-sharing services like Uber to reach Katunayake from Colombo.
Negombo to Katunayake: Negombo, another popular tourist destination known for its beautiful beaches, is just a 15-minute drive from Katunayake. Buses and taxis are readily available for this short journey.
Bandaranaike International Airport: If you're arriving by air, you'll land at Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), which is located in Katunayake itself. Many international flights connect to BIA, making it an ideal entry point for your Sri Lankan adventure.
Why Is Katunayake Famous? Things To Do In Katunayake
Although Katunayake is a small town, it offers plenty of attractions and experiences to make your visit worthwhile. Don’t forget to check out these superb landscapes on your upcoming trip:
Soak in Negombo Beach
When it comes to Katunayake Beach, Negombo Beach is a top place to unwind and escape the urban clamor. Here, you'll find serenity amidst the verdant palm trees swaying gently in the breeze while the sunsets cast a spell of mesmerizing beauty.
Nowadays, Negombo beaches attract both foreign and domestic tourists, offering playgrounds for exhilarating activities like kite surfing, sailing, windsurfing, and jet skiing. At dusk, this is a place for couples to stroll along the shoreline, and after nightfall, you can find local people plunging into the waves for midnight swims.
For foodies, the beachfront is full of restaurants serving the freshest seafood straight from the ocean to your plate. There are also charming local stores that await tourists in search of unique souvenirs. Owing to its proximity to the airport, Negombo Beach is a favored stop for travelers seeking a tranquil beachside interlude before their flights.
Negombo Beach is a top place to unwind in Katunayake
Riding Boat in Muthurajawela Marsh
Located a mere 18 kilometers from Negombo, Muthurajawela Marsh is an ideal place for nature enthusiasts and wildlife explorers. This enchanting canal is the largest saline wetland in the region, being home to 75 species of birds and 48 species of butterflies. Today, Muthurajawela Marsh stands proudly as one of Sri Lanka's premier biodiversity hotspots, preserving a diverse array of endemic, resident, and common plant and animal species.
What makes the atmosphere within the sanctuary fresh is the lush, impenetrable mangrove trees. The most favorite activity here is joining a leisurely boat ride through this unique ecosystem. This fun-thrilling experience allows you to witness the diversity of flora and fauna that thrive in Muthurajawela. A visit to Muthurajawela Marsh promises an immersive journey into the heart of nature's treasures.
Visit Gangaramaya Temple
A visit to the Gangaramaya Temple is an absolute must for anyone visiting Katunayake. Known as one of the most sacred places of worship, this temple is among the top attractions in the city, offering tourists a sense of peace.
Gangaramaya Temple draws visitors with its architectural grandeur, which is a blend of diverse heritage and construction styles. A repository of spiritual treasures, such as Buddha's hair, elephant's skin, and various precious gems, along with a multitude of religious artifacts, is carefully preserved there. As you wander through the serene temple grounds, you'll encounter rows of serene Buddha statues, a large garden, a thoughtfully curated library, and an enlightening education center. While there, don't miss the chance to feed the temple's resident elephant or simply immerse in the spiritual atmosphere that permeates every corner of this sacred haven.
Savor local food
Last but not least, don't miss the opportunity to savor authentic Sri Lankan dishes while staying in Katunayake. This place has several local restaurants and eateries where you can try delicious curries, seafood, and tropical fruits.
Trying local food in Katunayake is highly recommended
Top Tips for Your Katunayake Adventure
It is always better to pocket some helpful tips before traveling to a new land, making your overall experience more enjoyable.
Currency: The local currency is the Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR), so make sure to have some cash on hand for small purchases.
Language: Sinhala and Tamil are Sri Lanka's official languages, but you'll find many people in Katunayake who can communicate in English, especially in the tourism industry.
Weather: Katunayake has a tropical climate, so be prepared for hot and humid weather, especially during the summer months. The months between November and March are probably the best time to visit Katunayake.
Respect Local Customs: Sri Lanka is a culturally diverse country with deep-rooted traditions. Dress modestly when visiting religious sites and be respectful of local customs and practices.
Travel Document: A visa is among the most important documents when you intend to travel to Katunayake, Sri Lanka. Obtaining a Sri Lanka visa has never been easier with the introduction of the online application system. Applicants can now complete their visa applications on the Sri Lanka Immigration Services website, eliminating the need for tedious visits to embassies or consulates. The efficiency of this online service is remarkable, as it can provide applicants with their approved visas in as little as five hours, making last-minute travel plans a reality.
In conclusion, Katunayake may not be the most prominent name on the Sri Lankan tourism map, but it has its unique charm and attractions that can enhance your overall Sri Lankan experience. So, when planning your Sri Lankan journey, consider starting it in this hidden gem of a town, and you'll be rewarded with unforgettable memories and experiences.