Despite its name, the blow hole is actually found at Kudawela, 6 kilometres to the east of Dikwella. Here, secreted in a beautiful beach of golden surf and turquoise sea is found the only blow hole in the country; one of the handful found in the world. This is locally known as the “Hoo-maniya”, named thus because of the sound the blow hole makes before the water spurts upward. R.L. Broheir first catapulted this site into the international awareness by including an account of it in his famous book “Seeing Ceylon”, published in the 1960s.
Today, the popularity of the blow hole as a tourist attraction is evidenced by the number of food and drink kiosks and vendors who cluster around the shallow stairs that lead up the cliff. The sea-food delicacies hawked here are a particular favourite among sight-seers.
The blow hole is seen upon a wide expanse of rock atop a cliff. The stream of water spurts up from a fissure that runs down a split in the middle of the rock. The ominous “hoo-hoo” noise that emanates from this opening can be heard like distant thunder from some distance away. This is the sound of the water pressure rising, causing onlookers to tense in anticipation.
However, the moment when the fountain erupts upward always catches them unawares. A loud whooshing sound accompanies a great sea spray shoots into the sky, reaching to a height of 120 feet at times before forming a mushroom at its apex and drenching sight-seers around.
Although this usually happens at 10-15 minute intervals, the wait is always tense, especially for a photographer waiting to capture the fountain in all its glory. Only the lucky and persevering few are rewarded in this respect. The monsoon season of June to July is considered the time when the blow hole is at its finest.
Visitors who travel here to view this rare occurrence can also delight in the surrounding shore, which is among some of the loveliest Sri Lanka beaches, with rock pools of vibrant fish and shallows suitable for swimming. The resorts of the John Keells Hotels Group are recommended options for those seeking accommodation at one of the nearby Sri Lanka beach hotels, as this chain of hotels is a well-reputed for its luxury hospitality.