06.12.2009 - 06.12.2009 31 °C
While we were in Negombo, we didnt even took time for first swimm in Indian Ocean and this was the reason why we decided to cycle first day or two on west coast. Our first goal was Anuradhapura in north/central part of island buit we couldnt reach it in one day. After breakfast we hit the road. It was still extremly hot with few clouds. We soon realized, that roads in Sri Lanka are not perfect for cycling. Sri Lanka has 22 milion people concentrate on relatevely small island, so it is logical that there is a lot of traffic. No metter that drivers drive like crazy we werent afraid of most of the traffic. Everybody is driving mostly 70km/h and we didnt see a single accident (but accidents happens a lot in rain season). Bigger problem are bus drivers in old Indian made Lanaka Ašoka Leyland buses. These are as we called them "kings of the road" and everybody respects them. They drive 100km/h and dont stop for nothing (only for passangers). This is because there is a lot of buses on the roads and they can not afford to let single bus to overtake them. Besides vehicles, it is normal, that also people and animals are on the road. There is plenty of vagabond dogs on the street sleeping or searching for food. Most of them are not agressive, but some are. We were really afraid of the agressive dogs first few days and run away when they start following us...Otherwise they are building new roads and in few years all main roads will be renewed. Some of the roads are still old and this are in really bad conditions but it still possible to cycle trough.
After 55km we reached town called Chillaw. Next bigger town with accomodation was 60km away and this was to much for us on first day. Chillaw is small town on each coast with no any special sights. We decided to overnight in 1 of only 2 pensions we saw in this town. I dont remember the name, but pension is placed on the beach on other side of the bridge. It is located 50 metters from coast with nice view on Indian Ocean.It is not possible to swimm here because of unstable floor which caused Tsunami 5 years ago.This pension is in bad condition, but we needed only a place for sleep with mosquitos net and ventilator.
After first day of cycling we got both sunburn on the face, but this is nothing unusuall for ciclers and we are used to it.