Ranlanka Jewellers Offers best rates for selling or even buying the US Dollar or British Pound.
The Shop is located at the intersection of Greens Road and the main street of Negombo.
A Bright Red Color Sign Board is visible and can be found easily.
Time on the beach of Negombo can be fun or it can be annoying. The beach is flooded with locals pedaling their goods and occasionally a beggar or two. I learned to have fun with the people bargaining for the best price, and getting into a conversation with them. They really appreciate that someone acknowledges them. One of my favorite peddlers was the snake charmer... He allowed me to handle his python, king cobra, the baby king cobra (6 weeks old)and his pet monkey. On this beach you will also be asked if you would like to go out on one of the local fishing boats...just remember bargain for the best price. (this is by unknown visitor & trying to find her details - Oscar Nonis
Negombo- Drop off
"First Stop - Negombo"
Negombo is a town that is only 20 minutes away from the Colombo airport. It a place away from the buzz of the city and more laid back. You can see christian.catholic churches here, Hindu temples and few Buddhist. An interesting place to stop after long hour flights. There are plenty of accommodation in this area and only 50 meters from the beach. We stayed at Ocean View owned by Mark who also cater group tours. Getting there you can take a taxi from the airport accredited by the airport for 1,500 sril lankan rupees. Or you may opt for tuktuk. Make sure that you agree on the price first before getting into one.
Have to be careful about ordering a food. My husband ordered a seafood pizza but it was only bread topped with carrots, 3 pieces of shrimps and a little tomato sauce on the top. Sri Lankan's are proud of their rice and curry and you can get plenty heap of serving so make sure you are the curry type of person.
"Beach in Negombo"
The beach is very nice except that it was hard for me and my husband to go swimming as the waves and current was strong. There were few westerners there getting there tan by standing on the shore without dipping themselves in the sea water.
The nice thing I like about the beach there is that it is not commercialize and laid back.
Negombo AKA Little Rome
Negombo has made its name as an youthful and western-influenced resort.
A new century has brought new ambition for a resort that had catered largely for the budget traveller. Its first five-star hotel – The Beach – has been followed by the opening of a Mark Warner watersports centre and that is already stirring new investment elsewhere.
Negombo’s proximity to the airport (and, don’t worry, that does not mean Heathrow noise levels!) makes it the first port of call for many backpackers and ensures that it retains a relative buzz for much of the year.
One hour north of Colombo, it also offers the chance to mix a beach holiday with forays into the capital.
Negombo is a relaxed environment where holidaymakers and Sri Lankan's haggle over this and that, flock to the numerous bars and restaurants, loll on a mile-long strip of broad, sandy tropical beach and generally mingle to an extent rarely seen elsewhere.
The broad, sandy beach now rivals all but the best on the west coast. For a convenient, value-for-money tropical holiday, there is no denying its appeal.
The Dutch colonial influence is most marked in the system of canals that extend all the way from Negombo south to Colombo and, more appealingly, north to Puttalam. You can hire a common-and-garden bicycle easily in Negombo to explore these canal paths,
Up the coast is Marawila, where the beaches are much quieter. Or you could visit Chilaw, a sleepy, picturesque fishing village, which attracts rather more prawns than tourists.
I was only in Negombo for the day, and by accident. The airline had overbooked my 7:30 am flight, and the next one didn’t leave until 6:30 pm, so they sent me to a hotel to wait. Which happened to be an upscale hotel in the major beach resort area of Negombo.
It’s amazing, like walking into a postcard of a tropical island. We hired a catamaran for an hour on the water (I don’t think I’ve ever seen water this color before). There are some aggressive hawkers on the beach selling beads, cloth, trinkets, etc, but they didn’t come inside resort grounds, and a nap under palm trees listening to the waves was undisturbed. The hotel was lovely, too.
I only saw the town driving through, but it looked fine – a lot of hotels, restaurants, the kinds of things you’d expect to surround resorts.
Because of that one partial day, when I needed a couple of days away from Chennai on short notice I came back. First impressions have been mostly confirmed, and haven’t been contradicted, but naturally it’s more complex than that.
First, I hadn’t seen the town of Negombo, I’d seen the roads leading to the beach resorts. The town is a regular small town, with a main street of stores a bit flashier than you’d think, about 3 blocks long, and a lot of side streets with mostly well-kept houses with flower boxes and the occasional larger gardened plot. There are a few ruins from the times of Portuguese and Dutch settlement and trading days, and a lot of Catholic churches and remembrances (read: statues you can pray to, in the old Buddhist/modern Hindu style) in glass cases on street corners. There are what look to be gems of small eateries, guesthouses, and cafes on the side streets – I was only here for two days, so I’ll have to let someone else find out whether they actually are gems.
Second, I hadn’t had any time to look around, and, more importantly, to talk to people. People here are friendly almost beyond reason. Yes, some have ulterior motives that could cost you dear, but it isn’t most people, and those who do are so nice about it it almost doesn’t matter. (Note, “almost.”)
Negombo is an old tourist destination, maybe now in decline – according to the books it’s not as flashy as southern beach destinations (sadly made more popular since the new beginnings of hostilities), and not as pristine as eastern beach destinations (sadly made more pristine since 12/2004). I got the sense that tourists at the resorts here don’t often leave them, and in fact my beach hotel reminded me of the old Catskills holiday resorts in its self-containment. I saw a few foreigners in town, but not as many as I thought there would be based on the numbers I heard.
I had it independently confirmed that the majority of the tourists coming here are German, Dutch, and English, with some Swiss and Russians, mostly as part of a packaged tour. German is surprisingly widely spoken, even though most people initially address tourists in English (at least they did me, and it turned out most of them thought I was German). There are a couple of restaurants one the beach hotel strip under German or Swiss management, and I saw a lot of signs for rentals and tours in German. I had longer and more interesting conversations with several people in German when their English broke down.
It seemed like a very large area of town smelled like fish. Fishing is a major industry here, and the morning fish market (auction, actually) is in all the guidebooks (I’m not sure why, it’s the livelihood for some very poor people, not really “local color”), so it’s to be expected, I guess. The extra-strong smell during my weekend could have been the way the wind was blowing, and the beach resort strip was not affected.
Come to think of it, the beach resort strip didn’t even smell like ocean, which is kind of unsettling in retrospect.
The only bad thing I saw was, in town, proportionally more dogs starving and diseased-unto-death than I’ve seen anywhere else, ever. (About one in three. Anyone who has read my Puppy page will understand why I saw this so clearly.) One person told me this has come about since the tsunami, and that everything has changed – weather (hotter, more humid, less predictable), people (more fixated on money), animals (dying of disease in the streets)…. I don’t know. Long before I see crows tearing apart a fresh carcass on Main Street I’m inclined to try to do something about it – if not for the animals, then for the public health issues the humans are going to face in, I’m guessing, about six months time. Apparently people here aren’t so inclined.
As far as the changes in people go, nine months ago I wasn’t ever approached with an aggressive “money money,” and this time I was several times, and even by a few who clearly weren’t hurting for food or the latest clothing. The beach vendors were as friendly and chatty as before, although I saw visible dejection when I declined, which I don’t remember seeing last time. Two tuk-tuk drivers did their spiel and followed up with a perfect sing-song “no thanks” before I could respond at all.
September might not be the best time to visit. The monsoon is just ending then, and when I was there the weather was more variable than usual, but very humid regardless of the variation. Not as hot degree-wise as India, but heavy, heavy sweating weather. The Indian Ocean was rough, with respectable waves and a deadly undertow – so no swimming in the ocean and no catamaran launches from the beach – and the water wasn’t the same spectacular color. The clouds were spectacular, though, which means the sunsets were too.