The “Hummanya” blow hole is a well-known attraction in the deep South of the country and it certainly lives up to expectations. Seeing it was an exhilarating experience and one that shouldn’t be missed.
So how do you get there? Passing the Matara town and after Dickwella, one has to turn right at Kudawella and proceed about 1.1 km. Residents in the area offer to take care of your vehicle at a nominal fee.
About a 20-minute trek along newly built shallow steps brings you to the spot. All along the way little kiosks sell cool drinks and the fresh catch of the area – fish! The batter fried preparation of different kinds of fish, was delicious.
Even from far away, one can hear the sounds of the blow hole. There are intermittent periods of silence and then there are sounds similar to the faraway rumbles of thunder – “Ho-ho-ho”. This is when the pressure builds up. Then after a while one hears the delightful sound of the spray as it hisses high up-almost 120 feet into the sky at times.
Reaching our destination, what greeted us was a large expanse of rocky cliffs. In the middle, there seemed to be a split, within which was a fissure (a long narrow cleft or crack) – through which the water came shooting up, like a tall fountain that appeared momentarily with a huge ‘whooshing’ sound.
Once in every 10-15 minutes or so, the water pressure builds up to give out the stunning spray. Waiting for that moment can be quite tense, especially if one is hoping to capture it on film as it is over in a flash. I had to click many times and wait a long while to capture a few good shots. But I could have gone on waiting for hours, so special was the moment. For the hour of so that we were there, the spray reached up to about 120 feet once, while at other times it was less.
Going back down the steps one feels tempted to eat more of the delicious fish, salayas, kumbalawas and even sprats strung together on ekels- all batter fried and then wash it down with a cool Ginger Beer.
Before heading back home, we also visited the Dondra Head lighthouse. One has to turn right at Devinuwara and proceed 1.2 km to come to this, the southern most tip of the country.
The beach surrounding this area is beautiful and one can spot many rock pools with colourful fish swimming among the green seaweed.
by Lankika de Livera
- Heritage of Sri Lanka
- Waterfalls of Sri Lanka
- Attractions of Sri Lanka
- Other Places of Interest Within Close Proximity
Map of Monument of Blow Hole (Hummanaya) at Dikwella
The map above also shows other places of interest within a approximately 20 km radius of the current site. Click on any of the markers and the info box to take you to information of these sites.
Zoom out the map to see more surrounding locations using the mouse scroll wheel or map controls.
Travel Directions to Blow Hole (Hummanaya) at Dikwella
Route from Colombo to Dickwella Blowhole
Route from Hambantota to Dickwella Blowhole
|Though : Galle – Matara
Distance : 190 km
Travel time : 3.5 hours
Driving directions : see on google map
|Though : Tangalle
Distance : 63 km
Travel time : 1.15 hours
Driving directions : see on google map
Blow Hole : Dikwella
Dikwella, which means long bridge, is an unprepossessing coastal town 22km east of Matara. It is not mentioned in any of the old guide books, because it only started to attract foreign visitors in recent decades after guesthouses and a hotel sprung up along the beach. Buddhist pilgrims have also started to frequent Dikwella in the last thirty years, for about 2km from the town on the road towards Beliatte is their real destination, the Wewurukannala Vihara, the location of the tallest Buddha statue in Sri Lanka. This is a seated image 50 metres high, which was completed in 1970. There is an eight-storey building behind that emphasizes the size of the statue. Inside is a staircase from which can be viewed comic strip paintings of the Buddha’s life.
6km east of Dikwella at Kudawela there is a turning to the right that leads to a cliff where the only known blow-hole in Sri Lanka – and only one of a small number worldwide – is located. This spectacular natural phenomenon is known as Hoo-maniya, which is a rendering of the sound that it makes just before the water shoots up into the air. Water in a cave at sea level below the cliff is forced upwards through a fissure in the rock in high seas, especially during the southwest monsoon in June and July. After travelling several metres through the fissure to the top of the cliff, the water is then propelled into the air, sometimes to a height of 20 metres or more. The fountain of water assumes a mushroom shape at its apex and descends in a spray that drenches onlookers.
R. L. Brohier (in surprisingly recent times) was the first to describe this blow-hole in Seeing Ceylon (1965): “The hoarse gurgling roar gathers in volume – then suddenly, a pillar of water churned to a dazzling whiteness gushes out somewhere up the cliff and for the moment you stand aghast”.
Up, up it rushes, attaining even as much as 60 feet in height, then, standing vertically poised for a split second, it falls back in a glistening veil of spray.
First Published : April 19, 2008