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Security concers

UK
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5 posts
6 reviews
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Security concers

I'm thinking of booking a holiday to Sri Lanka - for August - and travelling to Arugam Bay. British government advice however is to avoid areas south of Pottuvil.

Given this specific advice, I'd welcome any thoughts on this issue.

Colombo, Sri Lanka
Destination Expert
for Sri Lanka
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54,788 posts
196 reviews
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1. Re: Security concers

Hi DeeBee,

We can only tell you the current situation, because no one knows what the next 8 months will bring in the East and North. Current is 'inquire locally' - it seems to depend really on what drivers you can get and whether the Arugam guesthouses find it safe to travel all the roads and checkpoints there.

As for the A-Bay area itself, that's safe as it has almost always been over the last few years. It's a Muslim area and that makes it mostly exempt from the regular Troubles in the east. But what counts is not only the area but also the travel from/to it; it seems to help to have a native Tamil-speaking driver for instance, so Muslim or Tamil and not a Sinhalese.

Maybe Nishanta or Treshi can check the latest status amongst tour operators and other local travel agents...

At your service,

<Erik> & [Sandya]

Ahungalla, Sri Lanka
Destination Expert
for Sri Lanka, Kalutara, Ahungalla
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5,464 posts
9 reviews
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2. Re: Security concers

Hi DeeBee

Just to add....

If there are places which the British Government via the FCO website are advising against, then you should follow that advice, failure to do so will make any travel insurance you have invalid should anything unfortunate happen, even an accident, or illness !

Regards

Dave

Colombo
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1,062 posts
23 reviews
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3. Re: Security concers

Hi,

As of my knowledge, most of the activities not allowed in Arugambay now due to security reasons. However, cannot predict about in August as Erik mentioned there an 8 months to go. In General, May to November are the best months to consider about Arugambay.

Nishantha

Birmingham UK
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169 posts
20 reviews
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4. Re: Security concers

Hi DeeBee

There is a blog and general information site about Arugam Bay at http://www.arugam.info/

This is generally up to date but of course it's written by local who are keen to get vistors back to AB

The issue that others have stated is correct in that the FCO do not advise travelling to Arugam Bay, or at least those areas east of the A2 and south of the A4 roads. The problem is that if you did go and had an accident then this would invalidate your travel insurance.

Interestingly, the AB site claims that an international windsurfing championship will be held in July 2009.

As has been mentioned Arugam Bay itself is safe, but the problem (for Singhalese drivers at least) is a small section of jungle road that they have to travel through to get to Pottuvil. When we went a coupel of years ago they were very relunctant to travel through this area.

If you do decide to go, the Arugram Bay area has excellent weather in August and is great for surf & swimming; but the hotels are all fairly basic. Probably the best hotel is the stardust; best food and bar is at the siam view hotel.

5. Re: Security concers

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