Pigeon Island is located around 1 km away from the Nilaveli beach.
This is consists of two islands, one is small and other one is larger
in size. This is one of the best places to see corals.
This island got it's name because of the Rock Pigeons live over there. In year 2003 Pigeon island was designated as a nation park in Sri Lanka. earlier it was a sanctuary. This island was used by British army as a place for shooting practice in early world war time.
In our stay at Nilaveli beach, we decided to visit to pigeon island. This island can be
seen clearly from the breach. There are boat services available from the beach and it will
cost around RS2000/= for round trip. Life jackets provided and operators says that they
have insurance also. This service operates from morning to 5.30pm. There are several
people who runs this service. You need to remember or get the contact number of the boat
operator, because you have to come by the same boat.
It took around 15 minutes to reach the Pigeon islands. From the Nilaveli beach you see this as a one island, but actually there are two. One small island and a larger island
The beach is covered with corals and I haven't got that experience in any other beach in Sri Lanka. It's difficult to walk here without slippers, because of these corals. Some times dead corals can make sharp cut, which can cause bad infection. You can have a sea bath in pigeon island, but I think Nilaveli beach better for it. Even sand was formed with the crushed corals.
Visitors can climb-up the rocks and get the view of the surrounding. You can see the real owners of the island, the pigeons in the other side of the island. If you comes to the island, don't forget the nature trail and climb up the rock.
We saw very lengthy dark patch in the sea water near the beach. Actually it's bunch of small fish moving around the island.
Large number of people visits this island week ends and public holidays so its under threat of pollution and reef degradation. This island is currently under supervision of Sri Lanka Navy and department of Wildlife Conservation . We saw the officials are taken some actions to prevent the pollution in the island.