Traditional Net Fishing on the Beach at Paraliya Hikkaduwa

The rhythmic chanting was matched by the lockstep motion of feet pounding along Peraliya beach outside Hikkaduwa on the South coast of Sri Lanka. It is a common sight along the coastline of this island nation to see two rows of fisherman laboriously pulling in large nets that are left floating out at sea.

Early in the morning, large nets are pulled out to into the ocean by boats and left to sit there for a few hours as they gather the day’s catch. The boats that pull them out sit at the end of the net and eventually, when the time is right, they stand up and begin waving their shirts or a piece of clothe in the air.

Then the work begins.

The fisherman hanging out in their beach huts come out from the comfort of the shade to the scalding sand and grab hold of the lines that extend out from both sides of the net. Then the pulling begins. They begin marching in lockstep, decades of family knowledge passed down to their skinny legs and scarred hands.

The pulling begins on the edge of the ocean and slowly they march along the scalding surface to the end of the beach. Then the last one in line walks to the front to start the whole process over again.

Slowly, slowly the nets come closer. Eventually, after around an hour the prize also comes closer and the singing and chanting becomes louder and more furious as the two sides cajole each other to keep working.

As the nets get a few meters from shore the yelling reaches a fever pitch as the fishermen run into their sea, yelling with tribal ferocity, to grab their booty.

Nets are pulled onto the sand then crowds gather to the see the haul and women in bright dresses pick up errant fish that have fallen out of the nets.

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Sri Lanka Air Force Helicopters

MI - 17

The Workhorse of the rotary wing aircraft, the MI 17 is a verstile aircraft , which is used to airlift combat troops as well as to fly VIP passengers. The aircraft was inducted to the SLAF in 1993 and has proven to be a very reliable Helicopter.

BELL - 412

A four-rotor version of the Bell-212. The Bell 412 is used exclusively for passenger transportation. These air crafts were initially inducted to the Sri Lanka Air Force in 1985.

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Surfing at Arugam Bay Sri Lanka

Arugam Bay is a bay situated on the Indian Ocean in the dry zone of Sri Lanka's southeast coast. The bay is located 320 kilometres (200 mi) due east of Colombo, and approximately 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) south of the market town of Pottuvil. The main settlement in the area, known locally as Ullae, is predominantly Muslim, however there is a significant Tamil and Sinhala population to the south of the village, as well as a number of international migrants, largely from Europe and Australia. While traditionally fishing has dominated the local economy, tourism has grown rapidly in the area in recent years. Tourism in Arugam Bay is dominated by surf tourism, thanks to several quality breaks in the area, however tourists are also attracted by the local beaches, lagoons, historic temples and the nearby Kumana National Park.

Surfing

The Arugam Bay area is home to a number of quality surf breaks, the most popular of which being 'Main Point' located towards the south of the bay. This is a right hand point break, with a rock/reef bottom, and has a number of sections with occasional barrels. Other breaks in the area include Whiskey Point and Pottuvil Point to the north, and Elephant Rock, Peanut Farm and Okanda to the south. These breaks have attracted a steady stream of international tourists for several decades. Arugam Bay has a good local surf scene and is home to some of Sri Lanka's most talented surfers and in recent years surfers from Arugam Bay have dominated national competitions. In mid-2010 the Association of Surfing Professionals hosted its first international surf contest in the Bay. The winner of such was Australian Julian Wilson . ASP repeated their contest tour in 2011 added a women's competition to the men's long board championship at Arugam Bay.

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