Natural bathing places in Sri Lanka – rivers and waterfalls

By on August 28, 2012

We all are having a tuff and busy time with all our studies. By end of this week we are getting a small vacation for two weeks. To get rid of this busy environment and to breathe some fresh air, all my friends and myself wanted to go on a trip. All of us got together and discussed about a place to visit this time. We have already gone on two trips since we started our college life, once to Minneriya again to Horton Plains. So we all wanted to visit a different place where we haven’t visited and a place we can enjoy together. We all started finding places in random ways. I thought of publishing about the places we found here to give an idea about these places so you can have an idea which places are good for a small trip.

Paravithota, Ingiriya
Paravithota, Ingiriya

It’s a wonderful place located in Ingiriya, just one hour drive from Colombo. This is an attractive place because of its little water stream and the natural pool which is very safe for a bath. Most of people around Colombo choosing Paravithota for their one day trips because it is very close to Colombo, the clean and tidy environment. There are hotels and other facilities as well. It cost only a little amount of money for a visit to Paravithota.

Kithulgala – Waterfalls and river inside Makanduwa/ kithulgala forest
waterfall inside kithulgala forest
This is a famous place among local people and foreigners as well. I must say this is only one another beautiful place made of Kelani River. People are attracted to here because of its natural beauty. In this area the river becomes totally white in colour because of the ups and downs and the barriers the river meets with. Visitors can have an adventure boat ride in the river as well. It is easy to reach from Colombo and it will only take less than 2 hours. The facilities are very high because the number of people who are coming here daily is a big number. More on Kithulgala River and Makanduwa Forest

Bopath Ella waterfall, Kuruwita, Ratnapura
Bopath Ella waterfall, Kuruwita, Ratnapura
This is located in Rathnapura, few kilometers from Kuruwita town. This waterfall has its uniqueness among all the others. The reason is this water fall look very much like a leap of the “Bo” tree. This is an attractive place where you can ever be. It is very safe to bath here. If we talk about the facilities and the hotels where you can get the services from, it is very good in here because many people are attracted by the beauty of this waterfall.

Polhena beach, Matara
Polhena Beach, Matara
This is one of safest beaches in Sri Lanka. And Polhena is very rich with its beauty as well. This is located away from the Colombo, in down south close to Matara. This beach is very safe because of the coral reef lying bit away from the shore. All the big waves crash on this reef and only a small wave in colour of white is finally washing the sand of the beach. This look like a small lake connected to the sea from a side. Polhena is very famous among the local guests more than foreign people as I think. However I must say this is one of the best beaches in Sri Lanka.

Nachchimale – Water falls and Natural Swimming PoolsNachchimalee water fall and Natural Swimming Pool
This is located in Ingiriya little bit away from Ingiriya junction to Padukka side. This is also a famous place which attracts lot of visitors. Nachchimale is a natural and safe bathing place. Nachchimale is very attractive because of the little water stream which supplies wather to the natural pool.

View Natural Bathing Places in Sri Lanka in a larger map
Google Map showing Natural Bathing Places – Click to explore more and to get GPS Locations.

I should mention that these are only few out of the natural bathing places located in Sri Lanka. Other than these places there are many places all over the country. Where ever you go in Sri Lanka you can find a nice place where you can have a safe bath.

Hiniduma Sri Lanka River Hiniduma Sri Lanka River

I’ll mention few more places where you can have a safe and great experience.
• Kahanawita ella (Thalduwa – Dehiowita – Kahanawita – Maha Oya- Deraniyagala route)
• Dehenwaka (Thalduwa – Dehiowota – few kms in Eheliyagoda route)
• The Bodhinagala or Dombagaskanda reservation in Ingiriya
• Thudugala ella at Kaluthara.
• Kiriella water fall in Ingiriya (Panadura- Rathnapura Road)
• Panawala – Watawala
• Belihuoya – In Sabaragamuwa Province. You can have a bath close to Rest House and also in River Garden Resort. Belihul Oya” and “Galagama Oya” flowing from Horton Plains meet at Belihuoya.
Sinharaja Rain Forest – There is a natural bathing spot close to Kudawa Camp
• There are many beaches where you can have a safe bath. Eg Hikkaduwa, Unawatuna, Negombo
River at Sinharaja Rain Forest
River at Sinharaja Rain Forest

Safety Advice on River Bathing: Note that though lots of people bath and swim in these places, water level may change from time to time, and shallow water can deepen suddenly. Hence, if you, your children or your friends cannot swim make sure you keep inside shallow areas. Also you have to be careful when walking on the slippery rocks in the rivers.

• In addition to these, there are lots of wild places where locals bath and swim. If you ‘ve been to such a place please make a comment.

Hashan Subasingha

About Hashan Subasingha

20 years old. Civil engineering student at ICBT. Facebook username is hashan.subasingha.


  1. carlamax

    August 28, 2012 at 4:10 am

    Bopath ella is a beautiful place for one day trip. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Anita Clark

    August 28, 2012 at 4:43 am

    Where is the Panawala mentioned here?

  3. Bimal

    August 30, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Peesa Ella in Lunugala in Uva Province is a very nice remote place to have a bath and fun.

  4. Pingback: Remote rural tourist destinations in Sri Lanka | Trip to Sri Lanka

  5. Dinuban

    June 30, 2013 at 8:44 am

    i wanted a place to visit like eg: sorabora wawe or something like that
    also a place to stay for a night with any kind of water

    • admin

      July 1, 2013 at 1:42 am

      Dinuban – Sorabora wewa is in Dry Zone (Mahiyanganaya). It has a nice dry weather. There are some poeople who arrange camping at Sora bora wewa, Search the internet.

  6. pasindu

    November 9, 2013 at 6:07 am

    can we have a drink at nachchimale water fall?

  7. Sunera

    March 30, 2014 at 4:13 am

    Try these river bathing places also.
    Kithulgala – Makandawa Forest Reserve
    Bopath Ella
    Olu Ella water fall in Yatiyanthota
    Fishing hut in Mooray Estate, Maskeliya, bordering the Peak Wilderness Sanctuary
    Sinharaja close to Kudawa conservation center
    Belihul oya
    Diyaluma falls

  8. Deepal

    April 17, 2014 at 8:45 am

    Are there any hotels near Nachchimale?

  9. Mike

    October 28, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    Kanneliya Forest in Southern Province has several natural water streams for nice, clean, cool bath: (1) Natural pool in front of the Kanneliya conservation center, (2) the pool behind the conservation center and (3) natural pool behind the Kanneliya Forest resort.

  10. Janidu

    October 28, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    Olu Ella (Waterfall) in Yatiyanthota is also a great palce for nice river bath

  11. Dimuthu

    August 1, 2016 at 10:43 am

    Katugas Ekka waterfall and surrounding area in Ratnapura is a very beautiful bathing area located inside the Forest.

    From Ratnapura Junction take Kos palawinna road and Walk into the Forest from the sign board.

  12. Dushi

    November 1, 2016 at 8:37 am

    please tell bathing places in kandy???

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