All photographs are the original work of Nishan Perera, and cannot be used without the written consent of the photographer. Unauthorized use of images is a violation of intellectual property rights and may be subject to legal action.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Off the beaten path in Kayankerni

Large areas in eastern Sri Lanka remained inaccessible to outsiders for many years. Ravaged by war for decades the east coast is now safe and open to tourists. And with peace, the beauty of this area is making the news instead of tales of darkness and suffering. Shallow sunlit coral gardens with healthy corals and colorful reef fish are sure to put a smile on even the most jaded diver.  Kayankerni is a small, relatively unknown village north of Passikudah, that has some of the healthiest fringing coral reefs in Sri Lanka. Hopefully they will not be overexploited by the growing fishing and tourism industries like in other parts of Sri Lanka. Despite its negatives, the war ensured that many coral reefs on the east coast remained out of reach of illegal and destructive fishing fleets, mass development and irresponsible tourists that have degraded reefs in the south of Sri Lanka. Lets hope both the planners and the visitors act more responsibly to ensure that this last remaining bit of paradise is protected for future generations.